Nikhai Hill-Green, Wolverine

Nikhai Hill-Green, Wolverine

May 24, 2019
Baltimore (MD) St. Frances LB Nikhai Hill-Green (image via 247 Sports)

Baltimore (MD) St. Frances linebacker Nikhai Hill-Green committed to Michigan on Thursday afternoon. He picked the Wolverines over offers from Nebraska, Pitt, West Virginia, and Wisconsin, among others.

Hill-Green is listed at 6’1″ and 230 lbs.

ESPN: 4-star, 80 grade, #25 OLB
Rivals: 3-star, 5.7 grade, #30 OLB
247 Sports: 4-star, 90 grade, #22 OLB, #274 overall

Hit the jump for more on Hill-Green’s commitment.

Hill-Green is the third commitment from St. Frances to pick Michigan in the 2020 cycle, joining linebacker Osman Savage and offensive tackle Micah Mazzccua. He was offered in January by the Wolverines, and that turned into a commitment after a spring visit. A lot of out-of-towners attend St. Frances, and Hill-Green is no exception, as the Pittsburgh native was also considering the hometown Pitt Panthers.

Hill-Green is a big, thick linebacker with middle linebacker written all over him. He’s a powerful hitter and run-stopper with good instincts.

What Hill-Green isn’t is an elite athlete. He’s a bit of a lumberer, and his range is limited. I have questions about his angles, because I think he’s going to keep up with Big Ten players in the speed department.

Overall, Hill-Green is a decent pickup for the Wolverines, but he’s not a game-changing player. He’s reminiscent of former Michigan linebacker Mike McCray II, who took a lot of flak for being unable to cover running backs out of the backfield and play in space. It seemed like Michigan was trending toward smaller, faster inside linebackers (Devin Bush, Jordan Anthony, Cam McGrone), so this is a bit of an awkward fit. However, Michigan fielded good defenses with both McCray and Bush playing inside linebacker, so Don Brown will find a way to make it work.

Michigan now has eight commitments in the 2020 class, including three linebackers: Savage, Hill-Green, and Cornell Wheeler.

TTB Rating: 74 (ratings explanation)


  1. Comments: 82
    Joined: 1/10/2017
    May 24, 2019 at 2:37 PM

    Thunder, are all these St. Frances recruits going to be used as bait for a “Devin Bush” (substituting SF for Pembroke Pines) equivalent?

    • Comments: 3844
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      May 26, 2019 at 7:12 AM

      No, I don’t think it’s a ploy to get other recruits. And with the way Josh Metellus has panned out (and Devin Gil, to an extent), maybe we were wrong at the time about those guys being ploys to get Bush. But regardless, I think Osman Savage is probably the prize recruit of St. Frances’s 2020 class, so unless they’re playing the long game and trying to get in on the elite 2021 and 2022 guys, then I think these guys just happen to be good players at a solid program.

  2. Comments: 1863
    Joined: 1/19/2016
    May 25, 2019 at 2:46 PM

    Can he play a Uche type role?

    • Comments: 3844
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      May 26, 2019 at 7:13 AM

      I don’t think he has the athleticism to pull off that kind of role.

  3. Comments: 295
    Joined: 12/19/2015
    May 27, 2019 at 12:33 AM

    Hill-Green is s strange recruitment. I actually kind of like him but not sure where he plays. Considering Wheeler and Savage are similar it seems like a weird commitment. Not much hype about the kid.

    From looking at his game film, he shows decent speed and athleticism. Not a quick-twitch kid but tough, one who has some unique abilities. First, his looooong arms jump out at film. Will he be able to fend off blockers? I guess we’ll find out after some coaching. What is evident is that his reach keeps him in on plays. Whether it’s tracking the runner or reaching to deflect a pass he shows controlled awareness. I’m slightly more impressed after looking at film as I never heard of him until 2 days ago.

    Never going to be an All American but could surprise some people with his heart and intangibles. I’d give him a 77.

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