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Posts Tagged ‘Receiver’

New in Blue: 2017 WR Nico Collins

Wednesday, February 1st, 2017


Nico Collins – WR | 6-5, 195 | Pinson, Ala. (Clay-Chalkville)
ESPN4-star, #21 WR Rivals: 4-star, #17 WR 247: 4-star, #29 WR Scout: 4-star, 24 WR
247 Composite: 4-star #23 WR, #136 nationally
Other top offers: Georgia, Alabama, Clemson, FSU, LSU, Ole Miss, Tennessee, Florida, Miami, Auburn

After plucking five-star defensive tackle Aubrey Solomon out of SEC country on Wednesday morning, Jim Harbaugh won another highly prized recruit right out of the back yard of the big boys in the SEC on Wednesday afternoon. Nico Collins pledged to the Wolverines on National Signing Day, capping the best recruiting classes in program history. He then announced it via Twitter.

Collins is a consensus four-star recruit according to the four major recruiting services and they’re all pretty much in agreement about where he is ranked. Rivals ranks him the highest as the nation’s 17th-best receiver, while ESPN ranks him 21st, Scout lists him 24th, and 247 has him 29th. Nationally, Rivals ranks him 120th, ESPN 150th, Scout 178th, and 247 200th. According to the 247 Composite, he’s the nation’s 23rd-best receiver and 136th-best overall player in the class.

Collins chose Michigan over Georgia and his home-state Alabama Crimson Tide. The 6-foot-5, 195-pound receiver also held offers from most of the South’s top programs including Clemson, Florida State, LSU, Ole Miss, Florida, Auburn, Miami, and more.

Scout lists Collins’ strengths as catching in traffic, hands and concentration, red zone weapon, size, and toughness, while listing his area to improve as elusiveness with catch. Scout praises his ability to make plays and be a deep threat, something Michigan’s passing offense has sorely lacked in recent years.

“An outside wide receiver who has shown the ability to make plays down the field or across the middle. A very dependable wideout who catches the ball well in traffic. Has ideal size and length. Is more of a deep threat. Likes to run deep routes and can get behind defenders. A long strider who covers a lot of ground. Not elite quickness. Solid blocker and a very tough wide receiver.”

Collins joins a great receiving class that includes the nation’s top receiver, Donovan Peoples-Jones, as well as Tarik Black, Oliver Martin, and Brad Hawkins to round out Michigan’s 2017 recruiting class.

New in Blue: 2017 WR Oliver Martin

Monday, January 30th, 2017


(US Army All-American Bowl)

Oliver Martin – WR | 6-0, 188 | Iowa City, Iowa (West Senior)
ESPN4-star, #60 WR Rivals: 4-star, #35 WR 247: 4-star, #7 WR Scout: 4-star, 30 WR
247 Composite: 4-star #28 WR, #178 nationally
Other top offers: Notre Dame, Iowa, Michigan State, Ohio State, Oregon, Wisconsin, BYU

Michigan got most of its recruiting done before National Signing Day, leaving few surprises for Wednesday, and that trend continued on Monday night as Jim Harbaugh and staff stole a commitment from the backyard of another Big Ten school. Iowa City native Oliver Martin committed to the Wolverines at his high school with Harbaugh and new assistant head coach/passing game coordinator Pep Hamilton in attendance. He then announced it via Twitter.

Martin is a consensus four-star recruit in this year’s class by the four major recruiting services. 247 Sports ranks him the highest as the nation’s seventh-best wide receiver, while Scout ranks him 30th, Rivals 35th, and ESPN 60th. Nationally, 247 ranks him as the 170th-best overall player in the class, Rivals 206th, Scout 216th, and ESPN doesn’t have him in their top 300. He’s the 28th-best receiver and 178th-best overall player in the class per the 247 Composite.

The 6-foot, 188-pound receiver chose the Wolverines over Notre Dame. He also held offers from Ohio State, Michigan State, Oregon, Wisconsin, and BYU, to name a few.

Scout lists Martin’s strengths as competitiveness, hands and concentration, quickness off line, and route-running skills, while listing his area for improvement as frame. That means he’s already pretty polished and could add some muscle to fill out his frame at the college level. Scout expands on that.

“Very skilled, technical wideout. Excellent route runner with great hands and ability to make catches in traffic. Smart and understands how to get open. Very good athlete with good quickness, leaping ability and body control. Competitive, hard working kid. At 6-foot-1, 188 pounds, he has good size, but is not as big in comparison to other top outside receivers.”

With a pair of highly-ranked outside receivers already in the class in Donovan Peoples-Jones and Tarik Black, Martin is a perfect compliment as a slot receiver. Michigan hopes to land one more wideout on Wednesday in the form of Alabama native Nico Collins.

New in Blue: 2017 WR Tarik Black

Wednesday, December 14th, 2016


2016 Champions Football Camp (Ian Behune)

Tarik Black – WR | 6-4, 208 | Cheshire, Conn. (Cheshire Academy)
ESPN4-star, #31 WR Rivals: 4-star, #10 WR 247: 4-star, #29WR Scout: 4-star, #13 WR
247 Composite: 4-star #17 WR
Other top offers: Alabama, Auburn, Stanford, UCLA, Georgia, ND, Wisconsin, WVU, Tennessee

To kick off what could be a huge recruiting week for Michigan, the Wolverines received a commitment from receiver Tarik Black on Wednesday afternoon. The Cheshire, Conn. native pledged his commitment during a ceremony at his high school and then posted the announcement video on Twitter.

Black is a consensus four-star according to the four major recruiting services. Rivals ranks him the highest as the nation’s 10th-best wide receiver. Scout ranks him 13th, 247 ranks him 29th, and ESPN ranks him 31st. He’s in the top 200 overall according to three of the four, with Rivals listing him 76th overall, Scout 99th, 247 197th, and ESPN the lone outsider at 223rd. According to the 247 Composite, he’s the nation’s 17th-best receiver and the 124th-best overall player in the class.

The 6-foot-4, 208-pound receiver selected Michigan over a final group that consisted of Alabama, Auburn, Stanford, and UCLA. He also held offers from Wisconsin, Georgia, Notre Dame, West Virginia, and Tennessee, to name a few. Black’s high school, Cheshire Academy, hosted one of Jim Harbaugh’s satellite camps last summer. He then took an official visit to Michigan for the season opener against Hawaii and received a visit from Harbaugh last week.

Scout lists Black’s strengths as ability to beat jams, hands and concentration, and size, while listing his areas to improve as blocking ability and strength — both aspects that he can improve upon at the college level. Scout’s Brian Dohn expands on that.

“Black is a big target who tracks the ball well and high-points his catches. He goes over the middle and can also get down the field. He has big hands to secure the ball and tucks it quickly. He gets off the line well and is quick in and out of breaks. He knows how to use his size against the defensive backs. He needs to add strength to be more physical down the field and also to be a more effective blocker.”

Black is the second receiver commitment that will head to Ann Arbor next year, joining Brad Hawkins, who reclassified from the 2016 class and attended Suffield Academy (N.J). He’s the 21st member of the class and the ninth on the offensive side of the ball after the Wolverines lost a commitment from running back A.J. Dillon earlier in the day.

Black’s size will give him a chance to compete for a role next fall with the departure of senior receivers Jehu Chesson and Amara Darboh. He’ll be the tallest scholarship receiver on the roster along with Drake Harris, but he’s also 20 pounds heavier than Harris was this season. By comparison, Chesson was an inch shorter and five pounds lighter and Darboh was two inches shorter and seven pounds heavier.

The big recruiting week continues tomorrow with an announcement from the state of Michigan’s top player and the top receiver in the country, Cass Tech’s Donovan Peoples-Jones. He will make his announcement live on ESPN around 8:30pm Eastern. His list is narrowed down to the Wolverines, rivals Ohio State and Michigan State, Orange Bowl foe Florida State, and next year’s season opener, Florida.

New in Blue: 2016 WR Eddie McDoom

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016


Eddie McDoom(247 Sports)

Eddie McDoom – WR | 5-11, 170 | Winter Garden, Fla. – West Orange
ESPN: 4-star, #23 WR Rivals: 3-star, #75 WR 247: 3-star, #67 WR Scout: 3-star, #68 WR
Other top offers: Oregon, Clemson, Michigan State, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Florida, Tennessee, Texas

Michigan added a piece to its all-name team — and also its 2016 recruiting class — with a commitment from Winter Garden, Fla. receiver Eddie McDoom on Wednesday morning. McDoom committed to Oregon on December 13, however, the Ducks pulled his scholarship on Jan. 17 when he told them he wanted to visit Michigan. He came to Ann Arbor this past weekend and didn’t wait long to pledge his commitment to Harbaugh’s Wolverines.

McDoom is an interesting prospect as he’s not rated very highly, but has an impressive list of offers. ESPN is the only recruiting service that has him listed as a four-star, their 23rd-best receiver and 184th-best player in the class. Scout, 247, and Rivals all rank McDoom as a three-star and the 68th, 67th, and 75th-best receiver, respectively. However, McDoom holds offers from the likes of Clemson, Michigan State, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Florida, Tennessee, Texas, Mississippi State, Miami, and South Carolina, in addition to Michigan and Oregon.

Michigan reportedly didn’t stop recruiting McDoom even after his commitment to Oregon and that paid off, according to Brice Marich of The Michigan Insider.

“The opportunity is there and is greater for me than Oregon,” McDoom told Marich. “They weren’t too confident about me and I feel comfortable with Michigan. I had an in-home visit with Michigan earlier this week. It was with (pass game coordinator / receivers) Coach (Jedd) Fisch and it went great, which is when we scheduled the official visit for this weekend.”

During his junior season at West Orange High School, McDoom caught 47 passes for 854 yards and 15 touchdowns. He also caught a touchdown pass in the Under Armour All-American Game on Jan. 2.

Scout says McDoom can make an impact both at receiver and in the return game and compliments his crisp route-running and running ability after the catch. His main knock at this point is his hands, but that’s something he can improve on.

McDoom joins an impressive wide receiver haul in Harbaugh’s first full recruiting class — Dylan Crawford, Brad Hawkins, Ahmir Mitchell, and Nate Johnson. — though they all likely won’t end up at receiver in Ann Arbor.

Countdown to kickoff: 66 days

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014


Countdown to kickoff-66

Countdown to kickoff: 86 days

Thursday, June 5th, 2014


Countdown to kickoff-86

Denard to don the winged helmet one last time

Friday, January 25th, 2013


Four years ago, a shy kid that no one wanted to play quarterback arrived in Ann Arbor, hundreds of miles north of anything he knew, eager to get a chance to play the position only one coach gave him a shot to play. Tomorrow, as he prepares to don the winged helmet a final time in the Senior Bowl (4pm EST on NFL Network), Denard Robinson will officially close out one of the most impressive careers the famed helmet has ever seen. And it won’t be at quarterback.

The man everyone calls Shoelace shattered records like they were windows on a driving range and etched his name into more spots in the Michigan annals than anyone can ever dream of. And while he ended his Michigan career fourth in passing attempts, sixth in completions, fourth in yards, and fourth in touchdowns, his future is at another position.

This week in Senior Bowl practice in Mobile, Ala., Denard spent his time running pass routes instead of throwing them and fielding punts and kickoffs. He was limited on Monday and Tuesday due to the elbow nerve injury that has plagued him since the Nebraska game, but was given clearance for full contact on Wednesday. The consensus seems to be that he has immense potential, but he’s a work in progress.

“He has a lot of confidence in his ability, but at the same time he understands that he doesn’t know everything that he needs to know about playing the wide receiver position,” said Oakland Raiders head coach Dennis Allen. “But he’s very willing to learn. That’s the biggest thing, is guys understanding and being willing to put forth the effort to try to learn the position.”

Allen, who will be coaching the North team that Denard is a part of tomorrow, has raved about Denard’s athleticism and potential all week. But it’s his work ethic and attitude that will allow him to succeed. Every NFL Draft is full of talented college stars who are character risks, but throughout his career Denard has shown himself to be a hard-working, humble guy who won’t let fame and stardom get to his head. And that’s the type of kid an NFL team will take a chance on.

He’s trying to fit the mold of other college quarterbacks that have made the transition to receiver at the next level, such as Indiana’s Antwaan Randle-El, who had a productive career with the Pittsburgh Steelers and Washington Redskins, and Kentucky’s Randall Cobb, who now stars for the Green Bay Packers. But it certainly hasn’t come easy, especially judging punts and kickoffs, which he has struggled at this week.

“I want to be good already,” Denard said. “I want to be great already, so of course I thought I could be better. I’m always striving to be better.”

He’s not slated to return kicks tomorrow, but he will see plenty of snaps at receiver and could drastically improve his draft stock with a head-turning performance. The ideal situation would be to get the ball in space in several different ways, whether on end-arounds or quick screens, but he’s going to have to prove he can run efficient routes and catch the ball when given opportunities in order to earn a high draft slot.

Of course, following the Senior Bowl, Denard will have either a pro day in Ann Arbor or the NFL Combine in mid-February to continue to hone his skills and prove draft-worthy. That means a subpar performance tomorrow won’t destroy his chances, but an impressive performance could really help them.

“Really, it’s the more you can do. That’s the way the NFL is,” said an NFL general manager. “He’s out there trying to return kicks, he’s out there trying to return punts, trying to learn the receiver thing. You’ve got a lot of guys who can kind of do multiple things. If he wants to be in the NFL that’s got to be his approach. And he’s attacking it, he’s trying to show everybody he’s trying to do whatever. That’s what it’s all about. You just want to see him try to get in the game and hopefully have a little bit of success.”