If I Had My Druthers . . . 2020 Transfers

Tag: Michael Williams

23Dec 2019
Blog, homepage 9 comments

If I Had My Druthers . . . 2020 Transfers

Jovan Swann (#51, image via Rivals)

Michigan is rumored to have some interest in various potential transfers. I will address some of those rumored players here. I cannot claim to have watched all of these players play – especially in college – but I will do my best to evaluate how they would fit on Michigan’s roster.

NOTE: I am only looking at players that Michigan has been tied to in one way or another, because otherwise, obviously this would be way too overwhelming.

Hit the jump for the list.

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13Dec 2019
Blog, homepage 2 comments

Who’s available in the 2020 transfer portal?

Devery Hamilton (image via Twitter)

Some interesting names have popped up in the transfer portal recently. It’s impossible to keep up with this stuff – so don’t expect anything superhuman – but it’s something interesting to consider for Michigan, who could use some immediate help at defensive tackle (if Carlo Kemp leaves) and cornerback, if not other spots.

So here, my friends, is a list of players transferring who were offered by Michigan out of high school, as well as some notes on a few of them.

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9Dec 2019
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2020 Recruiting Update: December 9, 2019

Elijah Gaines (image via Hudl)


Elijah Gaines – S – Alexandria (VA) Episcopal: Gaines decommitted from Penn State. He’s a 6’2″, 193 lb. player who’s a 3-star, the #36 safety, and #511 overall. Gaines also has offers from North Carolina, Notre Dame, and Virginia Tech, among others. Gaines was initially scheduled to take an official visit to Ann Arbor for the Ohio State game, but that visit was canceled after he committed to PSU in September.

Hit the jump for more.

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18Aug 2010
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Troy Woolfolk has an Ouchie

I hope this makes you feel better.

Reports and statements after practice today strongly suggest that senior cornerback Troy Woolfolk dislocated an ankle today. If that rumored prognosis is accurate, Woolfolk will most likely miss the entire 2010 season.

Who will take Woolfolk’s spot at cornerback?
This practically cements the starting cornerbacks as redshirt sophomore J.T. Floyd and true freshman Cullen Christian. Floyd was probably set to be the #2 cornerback. Christian is the most talented of three incoming freshmen at the position, with more talent and potential than Terrence Talbott and Courtney Avery. Senior cornerback-turned-wideout-turned-cornerback James Rogers will also be in the mix.

Will any position changes occur to fill the void at cornerback?
Michigan doesn’t have the talent or depth at other positions to move many guys. Sophomore Teric Jones played cornerback last year but moved to Bandit in the spring. When redshirt freshman J.T. Turner decided to transfer last week, head coach Rich Rodriguez stated that Jones would get practice reps at Bandit and cornerback. I imagine that Jones will make a full-scale move to cornerback now. Another option is true freshman D.J. Williamson, a 6’1″, 170 lb. receiver who played a little defense in high school. Longshots to move include true freshman safety Ray Vinopal and redshirt junior safety Michael Williams, who has seemingly been squeezed out of the competition at Spur. None of these players should be considered as challengers for the starting cornerback job, however.

How did the depth at cornerback get so . . . shallow?
From the Class of 2007, wide receiver/cornerback Zion Babb ran off after Rodriguez arrived in Ann Arbor. Five-star cornerback recruit Donovan Warren entered the 2010 NFL Draft early, only to go undrafted. Cornerback/safety recruit Michael Williams suffered a knee injury and moved to safety full-time after Ron English was let go.

From the Class of 2008, Boubacar Cissoko took stupid pills once he arrived on campus and was booted from the team in mid-2009.

From the Class of 2009, athlete recruit Denard Robinson was pegged by some teams as a cornerback; he came to Michigan as a quarterback and has seemingly taken the lead in the race to be behind center in 2010. J.T. Turner arrived on campus out of shape and remained out of shape; he decided he’d had enough of Mike Barwis and his crazy “stay in shape” demands, so he received his transfer papers last week. Robinson’s high school teammate Adrian Witty failed to qualify initially, and then once he qualified, Michigan’s Admissions department failed to admit him for January 2010.

From the Class of 2010, prized defensive back recruit Demar Dorsey failed to meet Michigan’s admissions standards (and apparently Louisville’s, too). The late pursuit of Dorsey may have curtailed Michigan’s chase for a couple potential mid-level cornerback recruits, particularly Rashad Knight and Tony Grimes. Athlete recruit Conelius Jones failed to qualify.

Overall, that’s nine potential cornerbacks who are either playing other positions (Michael Williams, Denard Robinson) or no longer on the team. I can’t blame Lloyd Carr or Rodriguez for most of those position changes and such. However, the handling of the cases of Adrian Witty, Demar Dorsey, and Conelius Jones should come into question now. Why were those three allowed to sign Letters of Intent if they weren’t qualified? At such an important position – and one in such dire need – Rodriguez couldn’t afford to hand out scholarships to kids who would never play a down for Michigan. He did anyway. I hope I’m wrong, but this could be a major failure of the Rodriguez regime at Michigan.

Are there any positives that could come of this?
Well . . . uhhh . . . since Woolfolk played as a true freshman in 2007 (a waste of a redshirt at the time), he’s only a fourth year senior this season. He could possibly regain his health enough to play as a redshirt senior in 2011.

How much does this impair Michigan on the field in 2010?
Significantly. The likely starter at free safety is a true freshman who changed positions from wide receiver in the spring. One starting cornerback is a guy who many (including me) believed should be a safety . . . that is, if Michigan had enough depth at cornerback to move him. The other starting cornerback is either James Rogers, a senior who has barely seen the field in three years, or a true freshman. Michigan’s defense was going to be bad in 2010, anyway. The loss of Woolfolk not only affects the passing game negatively, but also exchanges a solid tackler for an 18-year-old kid who admittedly needs to improve his tackling (Christian). This injury probably lowers Michigan’s win total by one or two games.

26Jul 2010
Uncategorized 3 comments

2010 Countdown: #39 Mike Williams

Name: Mike Williams
Height: 5’11”
Weight: 190 lbs.
High school: St. Bonaventure High School in Santa Yuez, CA
Position: Spur
Class: Redshirt junior
Jersey number: #40
Last year: I ranked Williams #17 and said “Big hitter needs to solidify safety spot.” He did not, although he recorded 56 tackles.

By the end of last year, a lot of people had given up on Mike Williams. He came in as a pretty big-time recruit after playing in the Army All American Game but redshirted as a freshman, partly due to injury. With the regime change that came prior to the 2008 season, Williams was kind of thrown under the bus – not on purpose, but by circumstance. Under Lloyd Carr and Ron English, Williams was being groomed to play the slot corner position that Brandon Harrison played so effectively. That position was essentially eliminated with the hiring of new defensive coordinator Scott Shafer, and Williams moved to safety.

That’s where he remained in 2009 with the hiring of Greg Robinson, but Ron English had a bead on Williams (whom English recruited out of California) that the two subsequent coordinators have not. English could see that Williams wasn’t great playing in space, which is why he intended to play Williams over the slot. Due to shoddy recruiting, injuries, and what MGoBlog has deemed “Angry Michigan Safety Hating God,” Williams found himself covering deep zones in 2009. If you’re wondering how that worked out, check out the 2009 Michigan-Iowa game. Yeah . . . not good. In addition, Williams was prevented from playing special teams in 2009, a unit on which Williams blocked a punt and made 11 special teams tackles in the previous year.

For spring 2010 Williams moved to Spur, which is essentially the position Steve Brown occupied in 2009; it’s a linebacker/safety hybrid, one that won’t have deep responsibilities very often (if at all) and will largely be supporting the run. This fits Williams’s strengths well. He dropped to third on the depth chart in the spring (behind Thomas Gordon and Floyd Simmons), but the story’s not over for Williams. He’ll face stiff competition from incoming freshmen as well, but Williams has this year and 2011 to make his mark. If he can become more disciplined (Illinois quarterback Juice Williams embarrassed #40 several times last year), he has the speed and hitting ability to be a good player. If nothing else, he should be flying downfield on coverage units.

Prediction for 2010: Backup spur, special teams coverage