Name: Dionte Sykes Height: 6’4″ Weight: 200 lbs. High school: Gilbert (AZ) Williams Field Position: Wide receiver Class: 2014
Notes: Holds offers from Arizona, Arizona State, Colorado, Michigan, Oregon State, Syracuse, and UCLA . . . Reports a 4.80 forty time . . . As a junior in 2012, had 42 catches for 708 yards and 5 touchdowns . . . ESPN Watch List . . . 247 Sports 4-star WR, 90 grade, #34 WR . . . Attended same high school as former Michigan targets Christian Westerman (Auburn, now Arizona State) and Brett Hundley (UCLA)
Strengths: Big frame . . . Long arms . . . Can threaten teams due to size advantage . . . Shows ability to catch balls thrown outside body framework . . . Also capable of using body to shield defenders from football . . . Aggressive runner who will lower shoulder for extra yardage . . . Willing blocker who drives feet and stays on blocks . . . Hustles and shows positive on-field demeanor
Weaknesses: Limited speed . . . Not a whole lot of ability to making things happen on his own . . . Occasionally looks for cutbacks when he should look to get upfield . . . Not particularly elusive or explosive . . . Route running needs to improve, though his routes look rather simple and don’t require much refined technique
Projection: Wide receiver. Sometimes big kids like Sykes get projected to tight end, but he doesn’t have the current bulk to be a surefire prospect there. He looks like someone who will remain on the outside, but he probably won’t develop into a consistent deep threat because of a lack of speed. Sykes looks more like a possession receiver, but he has a chance to be very productive because of his frame. Guys like Mike Williams and Dwayne Jarrett, for example, had a lot of success at USC without being burners. I also like the way he blocks and hustles, so I think he would fit in well where he doesn’t have to get 80 catches a year to be happy.
Six degrees of Kevin Bacon: Maurice Hurst, who spawned 2013 defensive tackle Maurice Hurst, Jr., tries to tackle former Michigan running back Leroy Hoard
Harper Woods (MI) Chandler Park wide receiver Csont’e York was offered by and committed to Michigan. (Commitment post here.)
ADDED TO THE BOARD (2013, 2014)
Seffner (FL) Armwood wide receiver Alvin Bailey was offered by Michigan. The 5’11”, 170-pounder has also been targeted by Arkansas, Auburn, Clemson, Florida State, Georgia, Notre Dame, Penn State, and South Carolina, among others. He plays quarterback for Armwood, passing for 872 yards and 12 touchdowns, rushing for 872 yards and 6 touchdowns, and catching 22 passes for 404 yards and 3 touchdowns. Bailey is the teammate of fellow Michigan target Leon McQuay III, a safety.
Piscataway (NJ) Piscataway cornerback Nadir Barnwell was offered by Michigan. The 5’11”, 180-pounder is a lefty quarterback for his high school, but his quarterback days are likely over when he hits college. He also holds offers from Florida, Georgia, Notre Dame, Penn State, and Rutgers, along with many others. During his junior season, he passed for 1,364 yards, ran for 452, and made 40 tackles to go with 3 interceptions. (Highlights here.)
Brooklyn (NY) Poly Prep offensive tackle Jay Hayes, a 2014 prospect, was offered by Michigan last week. The 6’5″, 270 lb. athlete, who could also play defensive line, holds offers from Connecticut, Rutgers, and UCLA, too.
Westwood (MA) Xaverian Brothers defensive tackle Maurice Hurst, Jr. was offered by Michigan. Hurst is a 6’2″, 285 lb. lineman with offers from Nebraska, Ohio State, and many others. He is the son of former New England Patriots cornerback Maurice Hurst, who had 27 career interceptions from 1989 to 1995. As a junior in 2011, “Junior” had 65 tackles and 11 sacks.
Mansfield (TX) Timberview safety Edward Paris, a 2014 prospect, was offered by Michigan. He stands 6’2″ and 188 lbs. and claims a 4.4 forty. Teams like Clemson, LSU, Notre Dame, and Oklahoma are already after him. He carried the ball 12 times for 179 yards (14.9 yards per carry) and 3 touchdowns, but he also broke up 20 passes and notched 8 interceptions. That’s pretty good production for a sophomore defensive back. (Highlights here.)
Tuscaloosa (AL) Northridge athlete Bo Scarbrough, a 2014 prospect, was offered by Michigan. The 6’1″, 215 lb. is projected by some sites as a running back and as a linebacker by others, but after I watched his highlights, he looks like a running back to me. He also doesn’t look like he’s 215 lbs. unless he’s put on some serious weight since football season, but oh well – he’s only a sophomore. Scarbrough already holds offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Clemson, UCLA, and a few others, but since he’s in the Crimson Tide’s back yard, I won’t hold my breath that he’ll head to Michigan.
Olathe (KS) South offensive tackle Braden Smith, a 2014 prospect, was offered by Michigan. The 6’6″, 285 lb. lineman also shows offers from Iowa, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, South Carolina, and Stanford.
Chandler (AZ) Williams Field wide receiver Dionte Sykes, a 2014 prospect, was offered by Michigan. He’s currently about 6’1″ and 175 lbs. As a freshman in 2010, he was timed at 4.69 seconds in the forty and had a 245 lb. bench press, both of which are very impressive numbers for a freshman (and maybe too good to believe). He also has offers from Arizona State, Colorado, and UCLA. (Highlights here.)
Saluda (SC) Saluda defensive tackle Dexter Wideman, a 2014 prospect, was offered by Michigan. He’s 6’3″, 276 lbs. as a sophomore and also holds offers from Clemson and South Carolina. As a sophomore in 2011, he had 61 tackles, 14 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble, and 1 fumble recovery.