D.J. Turner II, Wolverine

D.J. Turner II, Wolverine


June 25, 2018

Suwanee (GA) North Gwinnett CB D.J. Turner II (image via Recruit Georgia)

Suwanee (GA) North Gwinnett cornerback D.J. Turner II committed to Michigan on Monday afternoon. He picked the Wolverines over offers from Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Oregon, Penn State, and Stanford, among others.

Turner is listed at 5’11”, 170 lbs. He claims a 4.63 forty.

RANKINGS
ESPN: 4-star, 80 grade, #23 CB
Rivals: 3-star, #52 CB
247 Sports: 3-star, 88 grade, #41 CB, #450 overall

Hit the jump for more on Turner’s commitment.

Turner has been high on Michigan since he visited unofficially prior to his junior year. His quotes have been pro-Michigan for a while, and when he set his announcement date for June 25, it was a foregone conclusion that Michigan would be his choice. After he took an official visit this past weekend, he was one in a long list of players bound to commit to the Wolverines.

Turner has a variety of skills to offer Michigan’s secondary. First of all, North Gwinnett plays him at safety on a team that appears to run a lot of quarters coverage, so there’s a lot of pattern matching and almost man coverage to see from him in his highlights, even though he’s not playing corner. North Gwinnett has a lot of talent in the secondary, but teams will frequently put their best players at safety because opponents have a harder time throwing away from the guys who are in the middle of the field. Turner has the ability to be physical both in coverage and when tackling. He does a good job of reading quarterbacks’ eyes and breaking on balls thrown underneath, where he will try to undercut and/or play the ball at its highest point. He has decent speed but is not a gamebreaker in that area.

Some work will need to be done with Turner’s technique, at least from the safety position. Perhaps he’s more refined at cornerback, but Michigan would not be satisfied with his stance or backpedal. Since he’s playing off the ball quite a bit, we’re unable to see how well he would handle press man coverage. He also needs to work on his change of direction, which is related to the issues mentioned earlier in this paragraph. These are critiques of his technique, which will almost certainly improve once he gets to college.

Overall, Turner is a high-quality corner prospect who should be able to handle the demands of playing physically as a press man corner. He lacks the speed and playmaking ability of some other corners, but his physicality should make up for some of those deficiencies. I see him in a similar vein as David Long in that I would expect him to redshirt or play sparingly as a freshman, and then be capable of stepping in to play during his second year. He’s also capable of playing safety at the next level, at least once he bulks up a little bit.

Michigan now has 15 commitments in the 2019 class. Turner is the first true defensive back, while Joey Velazquez will play a safety/linebacker hybrid role. Turner would be the first football player to come to Michigan from North Gwinnett, which is a talent-rich program.

TTB Rating: 79 (ratings explanation)

3 comments

  1. JC
    Comments: 232
    Joined: 8/17/2015
    JC
    Jun 26, 2018 at 10:45 AM

    Not complaining, because it’s awesome, but did something happen recently? Why are the croot flood gates wide open right now?

    Thank you for putting all these together. I haven’t had time to watch all their tape for fun let alone digest it. I’m hopeful I have more time to dive in over the next week or so to make some sort of comment contributions (valuable or not is up for debate).

    • Thunder
      Comments: 3015
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Jun 26, 2018 at 1:07 PM

      I don’t really have the resources to tell you for sure whether this is true or not, but anecdotally, I believe this has a lot to do with the early official visit calendar. College football just completed its early official visit period, and players can’t take officials anymore until the beginning of football season. But kids were able to get to campus on the school’s dime over the past few weeks, and now they can make a more informed decision.

      If a kid took two or three officials this spring, he’s now at a point where he can only take two or three officials this fall for games or over the winter prior to NSD. So the new rules changed that dynamic. We might not see so many kids waiting until December and January to visit and decide, because they only have maybe two chances left to go somewhere unless they pay for it themselves. A guy like Eddie McDoom, for example, he might have used up all his officials before December/January, so he might not be visiting Michigan at that point if he were in the 2019 class.

      • JC
        Comments: 232
        Joined: 8/17/2015
        JC
        Jun 26, 2018 at 3:08 PM

        That’s something I never would have considered; I was unaware of that change. Still interested in seeing the downhill effects of that in terms of decommits because of feeling pressure of time/visits running out.

        I watched his tape twice all the way through, haven’t taken it frame by frame, but he looks like he diagnosis plays well. He’s often lining up between 5 – 8 yards off the play, but he’s great coming in for run support.

        Defending against the pass is a mixed bag. He appears to make some good moves on the ball, and I usually like his patience when routes are developing. There are times I feel he’s baiting the QB into trying to make a throw, and he doesn’t have the athleticism to continue that baiting at the next level. Most interceptions I saw were gifts and not plays made. I only saw him open his hips wrong once.

        Biggest question mark for me comes in where he plays. He has the size for corner, but he doesn’t have Long or Hill speed. To mirror your concerns, I haven’t seen press coverage or much in terms of a back pedal. If he plays safety I think he’d have to put on at least 20 lbs.

        I like him as a prospect, I’m interested in seeing where he ends up and how he develops.

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