The second National Signing Day for the class of 2023 is tomorrow, February 1. While most recruits signed back in mid-December, there are always some high-profile players still lingering in February, along with kids who were just unsure or who were fielding late offers. Below are a few of the big story lines for Michigan fans, along with the uncommitted offerees:
Cameron Brandt – DL – Chatsworth (CA) Sierra Canyon Brandt is “committed” to Stanford, but he committed last summer when David Shaw was still at the helm. Now that Shaw has been replaced by Troy Taylor, all bets are off. He’s a 3-star, the #51 defensive lineman, and #453 overall. Brandt took an official visit to Michigan this month, and the Wolverines now hold a 2-to-1 advantage in crystal ball picks. It appears likely that he will end up sending in his National Letter of Intent to the Wolverines on Wednesday.
The first National Signing Day takes place today, December 21, 2022. Michigan has landed a number of commitments in recent days, both from the transfer portal (QB Jack Tuttle and TE A.J. Barner from Indiana; OL LaDarius Henderson from Arizona State; OL Drake Nugent and OL Myles Hinton from Stanford; LB Ernest Hausmann from Nebraska; and EDGE Josaiah Stewart from Coastal Carolina) and from the high school ranks (LB Hayden Moore, DT Roderick Pierce, DB D.J. Waller).
Michigan has offered upwards of 330+ players in the class of 2023, so I will not do a rundown here of every single uncommitted prospect. But there are some uncommitted players of note that are still available and being pursued by Michigan. Here are some of the more noteworthy ones:
Karmello English – WR – Phenix City (AL) Central: English (4-star, #25 WR, #178 overall) was previously committed to Auburn, but the coaching change altered that situation. His final five includes Alabama, Auburn, Kentucky, Michigan, and Jackson State. Some crystal balls came in last night for him to pick Michigan.
Chance Fitzgerald – WR – Nolensville (TN) Nolensville: Fitzgerald recently committed to Virginia Tech and was being slow played a little bit while Michigan prioritized English.
Aaron Gates – S – Sharpsburg (GA) Trinity: Gates (4-star, #21 ATH, #382 overall) has been committed to Florida all along, but at one time, there was optimism that Michigan could get him to flip. That appears unlikely at this point and he will probably stick with the Gators.
Nyckoles Harbor – WR/TE – Washington (DC) Archbishop Carroll: I throw 5-star athlete Harbor in here just to reiterate that he is not signing until February.
Jyaire Hill – CB – Kankakee (IL) Kankakee: Hill is a 4-star, the #23 cornerback, and #194 overall in the 247 Composite. He released a top five that does not include Michigan, but the Wolverines had appeared to be battling Illinois neck-and-neck for his services. It will be interesting to see whether his top five was a smoke screen or if he truly has eliminated the Wolverines.
Jamel Howard – DT – Chicago (IL) Marist: Howard is also not signing until February. Some southern schools like LSU and Ole Miss have come in with offers lately, and he will likely take some more visits in January.
Taliafi Taala – OT – Sandy (UT) Alta: Taala (3-star, #38 OT, #508 overall) has been a target for Michigan, but he appears unlikely to end up in Michigan’s class at this point.
Another story line to watch is that of Michigan defensive end commit Enow Etta, who has been courted by Miami to join Collins Acheampong. Etta has said all the right things to the media about remaining committed to Michigan, but crazier things have happened.
I will keep a running list below of updates:
RB Cole Cabana – SIGNED NLI
RB Benjamin Hall – SIGNED NLI
WR Kendrick Bell – SIGNED NLI
WR Karmello English – SIGNED NLI
WR Fredrick Moore – SIGNED NLI
WR Semaj Morgan – SIGNED NLI
TE Zack Marshall – SIGNED NLI
TE Deakon Tonielli – SIGNED NLI
OT Evan Link – SIGNED NLI
OG Nathan Efobi – SIGNED NLI
C Amir Herring – SIGNED NLI
DE Enow Etta – SIGNED NLI
DE Aymeric Koumba – SIGNED NLI
DT Brooks Bahr – SIGNED NLI
DT Roderick Pierce – SIGNED NLI
LB Semaj Bridgeman – SIGNED NLI
LB Jason Hewlett – SIGNED NLI
LB Breeon Ishmail – SIGNED NLI
LB Hayden Moore – SIGNED NLI
CB Cameron Calhoun – SIGNED NLI
CB Jyaire Hill
CB D.J. Waller – SIGNED NLI
K Adam Samaha – SIGNED NLI
PLAYERS COMMITTING ELSEWHERE
DE Malachi Coleman – Nebraska
DE Matayo Uiagalelei – Oregon
CB Daylen Austin – Flipped from LSU to Oregon
CB Daniel Harris – Georgia
CB Kayin Lee – Flipped from Ohio State to Auburn
S Peyton Bowen – Flipped from Notre Dame to Oregon
With the early signing day approaching tomorrow, December 15, it certainly seems like things have gone wacky. Gone are the days when teams lost and hired new coaches around the New Year, giving those staffs five or six weeks to come together and sign players in early February. Welcome to the days of coaches being fired or jumping ship so the school can have someone in place to try to salvage recruiting classes for mid-December. I won’t say it’s an unforeseen problem – plenty of us talked about it – but it has put fans, players, coaches, and schools in positions we’ve never seen.