Review of 2009 Recruiting: Quarterback

Tag: Eugene Smith

25Mar 2021
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Review of 2009 Recruiting: Quarterback

Tate Forcier (#5) and Denard Robinson (#16, image via Maize and Blue Nation)

The 2009 recruiting class was Rich Rodriguez’s first full recruiting class in Ann Arbor, and he did his best to bring in the type of running quarterback that had been successful for him at previous stops like West Virginia (Pat White) and Clemson (Woody Dantzler). Rodriguez did about as well as expected, landing two starting-caliber quarterbacks.

David Cone, RS Jr.
Nick Sheridan, RS Jr. (walk-on)

Tate Forcier
Ratings: 247 Composite 4-star, #4 dual-threat QB, #120 overall
High school: San Diego (CA) Scripps Ranch
College: Michigan San Jose State
Other notable offers: Florida, Oregon, Penn State, Stanford
Scoop: Forcier was an early enrollee in January 2009, the first true quarterback prospect to arrive on campus since Rich Rodriguez’s arrival.  He seized the starting job as a freshman and started all 12 games.  His most memorable game in a 5-7 season was against Notre Dame, in which he had a couple clutch touchdowns to finish off the Irish.  He finished the season 165-for-281 for 2,050 yards, 13 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions; he also gained 240 yards and had 3 touchdowns on the ground. However, Forcier fell out of favor with the coaches in the off-season and was demoted for his sophomore year in 2010 in favor of Denard Robinson. He played in 8 games and replaced an injured Robinson in the Illinois game, leading the team to a 67-65 victory in triple-overtime. Forcier finished his sophomore season 54-for-84 for 597 yards, 4 touchdowns, and 4 interceptions; he also rushed 22 times for 51 yards and 1 touchdown. He transferred to San Jose State University and sat out the 2011 season due to NCAA transfer rules, but left the school in January 2012 for academic reasons. He signed with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats of the CFL in spring 2012 but was cut from the team a month later.

Denard Robinson
Ratings: 247 Composite 4-star, #9 ATH, #121 overall
High school: Deerfield Beach (FL) Deerfield Beach
College: Michigan
Other notable offers: Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Ohio State
Scoop: Robinson was recruited by many schools as an “athlete” or defensive back, and Michigan was one of only a couple schools offering him a chance to play quarterback. He was a late addition to the 2009 class, committing on National Signing Day in February. After being a backup/gadget player as a freshman, he went on to start for most of the next three seasons, a run ended by an elbow injury halfway through his senior year. Overall, he completed 57.2% of his passes for 6,250 yards, 49 touchdowns, and 39 interceptions. His biggest impact came in the running game, where the lightning-fast Robinson ran for 4,495 yards on 6.2 yards/carry and scored 42 touchdowns. He was an All-American in 2010, a two-time First Team All-Big Ten selection, and finished #6 in the Heisman voting in 2010. He was picked in the 5th round (#135 overall) by the Jacksonville Jaguars as a running back and played for the Jags from 2013-2016, totaling 1,058 rushing yards and 5 total touchdowns.

Hit the jump for a look at the rest of Michigan’s quarterback recruiting efforts in 2009.

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20Dec 2008
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No more Beaver for Michigan fans

The interestingly named Shavodrick Beaver is no longer a Michigan commitment. Instead, he will be enrolling as a Tulsa Golden Hurricane come January. If that doesn’t make sense to you, that’s because it doesn’t make sense.

Apparently, he just wants his mom to be able to see him play in football games, which is admirable, I guess. He certainly won’t be attending Tulsa to get to the NFL; if he gets to the next level, he would join such memorable standouts as Garrett Mills (Vikings, TE) and Nick Graham (Colts, DB). It’s not exactly a factory for NFL players.

The situation is not dire. Recruiting services have current commit Tate Forcier ranked above Beaver in almost every category, although Beaver is probably a more skilled runner. Forcier will enroll in January and begin his fight with Steven Threet to start on Opening Day 2009. In my opinion, Beaver would have sat on the bench behind Forcier and Threet for at least a couple years. Former walk-on (and former starter) Nick Sheridan will likely be third on the depth chart, at best, followed by redshirt junior David Cone.

This does not account for other potential commits such as:

Tajh Boyd – formerly committed to West Virginia, then committed to Tennessee until new coach Lane Kiffin reneged on the school’s scholarship offer. He is Rivals’ #3-ranked dual-threat quarterback. Ohio State is also in the mix, although Boyd might be leery of being only one year behind Terrell Pryor.

Eugene Smith – currently committed to West Virginia. Smith’s interest in Michigan lasted for a long time, even throughout the commitments of Kevin Newsome (since decommitted), Shavodrick Beaver (ditto), and Tate Forcier. It would not surprise me to see Rivals’ #5-ranked dual-threat quarterback jump at the chance to work with Rich Rodriguez and Calvin Magee instead of Bill Stewart.

Denard Robinson – currently reported to be a Florida lean. He’s 6′ and 179 pounds and listed as the #12 ATHLETE by Rivals. If the whole quarterback thing doesn’t work out, he could be a solid wide receiver or cornerback.’s Tom Beaver is reporting that Robinson will be Michigan’s number one contingency plan, although he may be a long shot to pull away from the Gators.

With the recruiting dead period upcoming, it may be a bit before Michigan gains another QB commitment. My prediction is that the Wolverines will pull in two quarterbacks in this class: Tate Forcier and Eugene Smith.