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Lavert Hill came to Michigan out of Detroit (MI) King after his brother, Delano, also came to Michigan after playing high school ball at Detroit (MI) Cass Tech. The younger brother was a 247 Sports 4-star, the #12 cornerback, and #132 overall. He was a U.S. Army All-American, too. I initially gave him a TTB Rating of 81 (LINK) before bumping him up to an 84 (LINK), which was good but still behind classmate David Long.
Hit the jump for more.
Hill was not expected to contribute greatly as a freshman, so he had an opportunity to apprentice behind the likes of Channing Stribling, Jourdan Lewis, and Jeremy Clark. By his sophomore year he was a twelve-game starter and Second Team All-Big Ten. In the 2018 season, he came to be a First Team All-Big Ten player and a Third Team All-American. Despite some flirtations with the NFL draft after his junior year, he came back for a senior campaign that saw him repeat as First Team All-Big Ten.
57 tackles, 7 tackles for loss, 6 interceptions (for 70 yards and 2 touchdowns), 29 pass breakups, 1 kickoff return for 14 yards, 3 punts returns for -1 yard
All-Big Ten (Second Team, 2017; First Team, 2018-2019)
AP All-American (Third Team, 2018)
Hill was a standout recruit who played up to expectations in college. Michigan has done a good job of coaching up cornerbacks since Jim Harbaugh’s hire, and Hill was no exception. The Wolverines have taught their corners to be very grabby, and Hill took that part of his coaching well. On the other hand, there were constant intimations from cornerbacks coach Mike Zordich that Hill needed to toughen up; Hill missed quite a bit of time during the spring due to injury, but during the season, he was almost always ready to go. On the field Hill was a sticky corner who wasn’t tested very often. I think he missed some opportunities to make some big plays throughout his career, and while he locked down a lot of receivers, he didn’t come up with key plays against the better passers and receivers.
I WILL REMEMBER HIM FOR…
…getting called out by Mike Zordich. This has less to do with Hill than it does with Zordich, because it’s rare that you see college position coaches call out specific guys. Obviously, Zordich’s style has worked with several corners, so I don’t question Zordich but I just found it interesting. Regardless of whether that was a great move or not, it obviously didn’t spill over into costing Hill a starting position, which he held down for his final three years on campus.
I wanted to see Hill, who had a chance to get drafted after his junior year, make some more big plays and become more physical as a senior. Neither one of those things really happened. Hill got invited to the NFL Combine but did not do any of the physical testing, and his pro day was ruined by the coronavirus pandemic. I have seen a few pundits say that Hill fits in well as a slot corner because of his physicality, and I have no idea what they’ve been watching to view him as a physical player. He’s not particularly strong (though he did measure in at 5’10”, 190 lbs. a the Combine, up from 182 at Michigan), doesn’t tackle extremely well, and sometimes shows a little lack of game awareness. I think he will probably get drafted somewhere around the 5th round.
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