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Old Man Mike

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This is something which has been puzzling me and maybe some of you smarter folks can give me some insights. We've been obsessing a bit on how well Hoke is doing recruiting at Michigan [The recent Kalis thing probably adds to that]. I'd like your views on this:

Michigan's 2011 class had 20 signees. Seven offense; twelve defense; one kicker. OK. Depending on how well that was "planned" to meet their defensive inadequacies, and given a coaching transition, maybe that's pretty good. To put in a little external perspective, though: Michigan had only five players rated PhilSteele#s 49 or less, while we had fourteen. The gem of the Michigan class [PS#s-wise] was Justice Hayes, whom we know. Still, OK, give him a break for a transitional recruiting/coach-change year.

This year's Michigan "haul" is already at last year's number of twenty. And people are wowing. It seems to be a higher rated class for individuals with half of them Rivals' 4*s. Well, great for Hoke. When I look at these two classes though I don't understand exactly what's going on. This 2012 version is also overloaded defense to offense by 13 to 7. Well, OK maybe he still doesn't think that most of his veterans OR his new class are very good. That's possible. But at what point do you overload D and starve O?

For 2011/2012, Hoke has recruited ten DBs, eight LBs, and seven D-line only one of which is a tackle. One specialist. Eight offensive linemen. Three tight ends. Two running backs and none this year yet. One quarterback and none this year yet. NO wide receivers.

What-the-h+ll does this mean? The offensive skills are about to pour in, or he isn't very good at getting them, or he doesn't think he needs any in two whole recruiting years?? Depending upon the answer to this, for me, boggling conundrum, I'm going to hold off a bit on my praise of Michigan's recruiting excellence, especially vis-a-vis Staff Kelly's. [p.s. even his TEs are rated three-stars].
 

NDOM

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I'm just curious to what his recruiting pitch is. I mean yeah it's Michigan and all but how much are they paying these players to commit to Michigan???? I just dont understand how they are getting all these players.

Hoke is an unproven coach so why would any of these kids want to play for him? I'm confused just as much as you are.
 
G

GBdomer

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Michigan is hitting area's of needs. But as i have said this before show me your Ishaq Williams, Aaron Lynch, Stephon Tuitt, Ben Koyack, George Atkinson. I think it is a great class but i believe it is lacking ELITE talent like we brought in last year. Kyle Kalis, Magnuson and Royce Jenkins Stone are really good. No RB, or WR so far in this class which confuses me. I like are class a lot better, but i believe Michigan is hitting a lot of their"need" areas. James Ross and Richardson are very short for there positions even though they are very talented. Old Man Mike great post i agree with everything you said. reps
 

aubeirish

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I'm just curious to what his recruiting pitch is. I mean yeah it's Michigan and all but how much are they paying these players to commit to Michigan???? I just dont understand how they are getting all these players.

Hoke is an unproven coach so why would any of these kids want to play for him? I'm confused just as much as you are.

I think he is selling playing time right now and kids are buying. Yes they do have a good class so far, but it's mostly numbers. The better proof of that is how poorly most of the Michigan recruits did this week-end. I like where we are sitting with the talents that are committed much better than what they have, especially since we are expecting a very good season on the field as well.
 

NDFANnSouthWest

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I for one think that UM recruiting came out of the gate fast...however, the real question is if they can retain these recruits.
 

IrishLax

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Michigan is hitting area's of needs. But as i have said this before show me your Ishaq Williams, Aaron Lynch, Stephon Tuitt, Ben Koyack, George Atkinson. I think it is a great class but i believe it is lacking ELITE talent like we brought in last year. Kyle Kalis, Magnuson and Royce Jenkins Stone are really good. No RB, or WR so far in this class which confuses me. I like are class a lot better, but i believe Michigan is hitting a lot of their"need" areas. James Ross and Richardson are very short for there positions even though they are very talented. Old Man Mike great post i agree with everything you said. reps

THANK YOU! Saved me a lot of typing. No denying that Michigan has a good class with some quality players at position of need... but they haven't landed a single guy that makes me go "oh ****." This was evident at The Opening where our recruits lit it up and theirs, for the most part, didn't show anything at all.
 

GoldenIsThyFame

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I agree with all that has been said.

The only elite talent they have landed is Kalis.

We can start worrying about Michigan recruiting if they start winning Big 10 (11) Championships.
 
B

Buster Bluth

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I think we've also got to realize that not only will the talent on the field get increasingly better over the next 2-3 years, but the coaching will too. Say what you want about Hoke's staff and the Ravens D, but it is so superior to Rodriguez's staff that is almost isn't funny.

The Michigan-Notre Dame game has been a game where the victor is overhyped only to fall flat on their face by the end of the season. That won't be the case in another year or two, this series is about to take a step up and return to the level of the other elite annual match ups.

I agree with all that has been said.

The only elite talent they have landed is Kalis.

We can start worrying about Michigan recruiting if they start winning Big 10 (11) Championships.

Fail. :)

Considering the Wolverines have won four of the last five, I'm worried regardless.
 
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Rocket89

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^ Coming out of the gate fast is right.

We really shouldn't be that surprised at what Hoke is doing to this point so far in the recruiting game. Whether you hate Michigan or not, it is a big (and easy) sell for a lot of kids.

And obviously with Mattison and the ability to sell playing right away, Michigan has been able to bring in some really good talent.

Two things to point out:

1.) This hot start does not really reflect Hoke as a coach. I know there are quite a few Michigan fans who want to believe this hot start means Hoke is the "real deal" but as we know with our recent experience, recruiting well doesn't necessarily mean you're a good or great coach.

Michigan should recruit at this level (and perhaps even better) on an annual basis.

2.) As some have already pointed out, how many of these kids are going to stick around through the new year? There will be defections at some point along the line.

And to what OMM is saying, their recruiting is very unbalanced and even the defensive players they have so far aren't THAT great. Like I said, Michigan should be recruiting this well, and they should be doing even better than this. When they start getting five or six truly elite players, including some playmakers at receiver and running back...then I think it's time to say wow.
 

Domina Nostra

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Agree that this is mostly due to:

(a) Michigan being one of the nation's elite programs with the history and the facilities to prove it.
(b) having a big-time pro coordinator who is selling his NFL bona fides. See ND recruiting 2005-2007. If they win, great, if they lose, see ND recruiting 2008-2010.

UM and USC should be hauling in players ever year.

I also agree that this is one of those Weis-like classes that looks great on paper (star-ratings) but only has a few true sure things. Time will tell.
 
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Riddickulous

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I'm just curious to what his recruiting pitch is. I mean yeah it's Michigan and all but how much are they paying these players to commit to Michigan???? I just dont understand how they are getting all these players.

Hoke is an unproven coach so why would any of these kids want to play for him? I'm confused just as much as you are.

1. They can pitch the "We can get you into the NFL" card with Greg Mattison, who inherited an already loaded Ravens defense that actually slipped in every statistical ranking after his hiring.
2. Most of these kids are from Michigan or Ohio. It was probably their dream school from the start.
3. Hoke shows them tape from 2010 and says, "Look, our defense blows. You could probably start right away."


We have every reason to worry. As someone stated above, we've lost four of the last five. Two of them were utterly humiliating.

"We have better talent" doesn't work here. We've been the far better team the last two seasons and lost both games.

Fortunately, this great Michigan recruiting class will not be experienced players until 2014/2015, which is what Michigan fans overlook.

However, I trust in this staff.
 

Old Man Mike

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I want to thank everyone for their views. I am still puzzled by Hoke's pattern, though. Sure I know as do we all that he's "recruiting to need", but you basically recruit for two or more years ahead, as they are not going to be there at all this year and just frosh the following.

So, take Michigan's Wide Receiver situation. They have a bunch of Rodriguez-studs up in the junior senior classes who will all be gone. Phil Steele thinks that their sophomores are pretty good. Let's say that there are five of them [that's how many he lists as good quality, even though they haven't proved it yet]. Now along comes the third season from now. These guys are more or less seniors, so maybe, if they ARE actually good, that's sort of OK, but you recruited NO WRs in either of the two classes behind them. How would WE feel at ND with say five passable receivers [if they stay healthy AND three of them turn out to be starter quality], and nothing else but freshmen? [Remember that the offense needs three of them at a time]. This is why I'm not sure that Hoke is REALLY getting who he wants --- but he's still willing to fill up the roster and Devil-take-the-hindmost. I can't imagine Kelly leaving holes like that.

And Hoke's RBs are similar --- two good sophs [they may actually BE good], but nothing obvious behind them and no new verbals. Once again: a couple seasons from now and you have two guys you're happy with and just frosh behind? Think how WE feel about Cierre and Jonas with only Cam behind; answer: nervous. The only thing that I see is that he's out there still recruiting hard in these areas but not getting results.

But the other thing that puzzles me a bit is that he had 116 guys on his roster, as far as I can tell. 97 spring plus 19 newbies coming now.) Yeh, walk-ons, I know; but I wonder how many scholarships he really has left?? 20 verbals already; 20 total last year. Would you as a coach just fill up your roster with "best player available" without thought for two years down the road?? He MUST NOT be doing this, but I still can't understand what he IS doing. That's why I made the thread; hoping someone could give some "inner wisdom" on what they actually have going on "over there". It's of interest to ND if they have a serious Achilles Heel as to their systemic planning.

Since the guys he's recruiting now can't help much for this season nor the next, AND if he's unbalancing his roster leaving offensive future holes, we might be getting set up for kicking butt for as long as they're still on the schedule.
 

Who'saWildManNow

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It is odd how similar their past two recruiting classes are. After this season they will be absolutely loaded (depth wise) on the defensive side of the ball.

I believe they have 6 scholarships left in this class. Looking at they're depth chart for WRs I see only 2 sophs and the rest jrs and srs. Ideally you would want 2 or more WRs in this class, but I have an assumption.

While looking at SDSUs stats last year I noticed the 2 top WRs had 700+ more yards than the 3rd leading receiver. Based on those stats and his "pro style" offense he could typically go without WRs in this class and be okay with the current depth.

I'd assume Hoke and Mattison would be of the mindset that defense comes way before offense.. With that mindset he's doing what he thinks is necessary to dominate the Big10. Also, Rich Rod tried the opposite and failed miserably... Learn from you predecessors! (That's why Kelly is building the BEAST)

Hoke would be wise to pick up a playmaker or two with the 6 remaining scholarships in this class. All in all, they're not getting the athletes that ND is getting. Kelly will prove to be the better developer and coach.. and we will dominate!
 

OCIrish

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Old added saying, "defense wins championships". Hoke isn't going to win with his offense until he gets that God awful defense fixed...the only way he's going to do that is to recruit some talent and depth for the defensive side of the ball. He may also think he can generate offense like BK, however I wouldn't buy that. I don't believe he's in the same category as BK in terms of offensive coaching yet, or maybe ever, we shall see. **** Rod recruited ok on offense, on defense though, think Weis.....
 

DaLastFarleyite

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He'll probably convert a couple of the DBs to WRs down the line. That would take care of the apparent hole in the WR recruiting. Can't get all the DBs on the field at the same time anyway.
 

Riddickulous

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Old added saying, "defense wins championships". Hoke isn't going to win with his offense until he gets that God awful defense fixed...the only way he's going to do that is to recruit some talent and depth for the defensive side of the ball. He may also think he can generate offense like BK, however I wouldn't buy that. I don't believe he's in the same category as BK in terms of offensive coaching yet, or maybe ever, we shall see. **** Rod recruited ok on offense, on defense though, think Weis.....

The problem is that he recruited pipsqueak spread players who do not fit well in a west coast offense.
 

Old Man Mike

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Alright, those sorts of thoughts go through my mind too ["concentrate on defense"; "convert DBs to WRs"; etc]. But either one of those philosophies can leave you with a superb defense down the road on a team which can't score. That sort of team will grind a lot of inferior teams up [by simple power], but will not beat Kelly. He will neutralize the power up front with his fast offense and outscore them.

It will be back to the old Big Ten which will kill you with wear-&-tear season-long, but cannot beat a high skill team with relatively equal lines. [i.e. Big Ten vs SEC lately]. One almost wonders if just competing at the top of the Big Ten is his goal [at least in the next few years]?

Of course all this cogitating goes away if he reels in three or four high skill offensive players down the stretch. Still I can't think of how his QB, RB, and WR coaches are feeling about their units right now, and whether they feel they have the necessary support in the war room.
 

phork

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Change Hoke to a certain coach we all know and love, named Kelly. I can't recall the quote he said recently but he reflected on how the offense only needs to function but the defense is where its all. Ask Weis how many games his offense won for him, and how many games the defense lost for him.

Hoke is building depth on D because of the constant rotation of personel it takes to run a defense at a high level. Once the defense is straightened out then you can tweak your offense. The Ravens won an NFL championship with killer D and a barely adequate O.

The thing that puzzles me is why Mattison would go to UM. Its a step down from NFL, hell its a step down from being a college head coach. IMO I think its a retirement job where there isn't as much pressure for you as a coach. It was a head scratcher for sure, but one where Hoke can sell a NFL calibre coach as the real deal bill of goods. Kids love that.
 

Riddickulous

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Change Hoke to a certain coach we all know and love, named Kelly. I can't recall the quote he said recently but he reflected on how the offense only needs to function but the defense is where its all. Ask Weis how many games his offense won for him, and how many games the defense lost for him.

Hoke is building depth on D because of the constant rotation of personel it takes to run a defense at a high level. Once the defense is straightened out then you can tweak your offense. The Ravens won an NFL championship with killer D and a barely adequate O.

The thing that puzzles me is why Mattison would go to UM. Its a step down from NFL, hell its a step down from being a college head coach. IMO I think its a retirement job where there isn't as much pressure for you as a coach. It was a head scratcher for sure, but one where Hoke can sell a NFL calibre coach as the real deal bill of goods. Kids love that.

Correct.

Michigan's last championship season (1997) featured an excellent defense and an utterly anemic offense.
 

NYIrish14

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What suprises me about Michigans recruiting is that their able to still get good players to commit when they havent been a very good football team for some time. For the past four years, Rod has had some pretty crappy seasons and so had ND under Weis. However, what really ticks me off the most is the fact that ND has to prove more that they can win in order to get recruits than Michigan does. Hoke has done absolutely nothing at Michigan yet they havent even played a game, but somehow their selling recruits on the program. It just confuses me how Michigan can recruit so much easier, not saying that its hard for us to recruit. I do feel like Hoke is a very likeable guy and can understand why so many players want to play for him, but its just puzzling. I also want to say that even though they are recruiting very well, they have not gotten elite talent yet. Dont get me wrong hes recruited some solid players but their not elite. One thing is that hes getting almost all of his players from the midwest.Not to knock on the midwest but they dont produce as much talent as the likes of FL, GA, TX etc. I really feel like Hoke is preparing for a not so great season and is grabbing as many players as he can be the poop hits the fan. There will be decommits.
 

adm1n

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A few other things

A few other things

Hoke is recruiting defense because he knows that if he gets a good defense he can get good linemen and play power football. If you have good linemen on offense your skill players don't have to be very good and they will look good with a good line. Kelly is doing the same thing and he is adding his scheme to the offense side. He said he can't scheme defense.

Also, I think Hoke is selling playing time as many have said but that only works with the guys who are not elite. All elite guys think they can come in right away and start. See USC in 2007 when they have 7 five star RBs either on their roster or committed. That was when Marc Tyler committed there. Michigan can't sell PT to elite guys one reason why I think they won't get many. The other reason will be their record. I'd be surprised if they got more than 6 wins.
 
K

koonja

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Michgan's class is rock solid. If their class was ours, we'd be calling every guy the 'RKG' and raving about our class. If you don't think it's solid, you're in denial and having a hard time taking off the bias shades. The only question is if they keep it together.
 

Cali_domer

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Michgan's class is rock solid. If their class was ours, we'd be calling every guy the 'RKG' and raving about our class. If you don't think it's solid, you're in denial and having a hard time taking off the bias shades. The only question is if they keep it together.

+1,If it was our class I would be tickled. It is a strong class and there is no denying it. It is still along way to signing day though.
 

NDPhilly

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Went through Michigan's commitments and made list of who I would have liked ND to have gotten.

Jarrod Wilson- nice frame for a Safety and would have topped of our DB class very well
Tom Strobel- 6'6" DE that seems like if he has the athleticism would be a perfect fit as a OLB in our 3-4
James Ross- undersized MLB (5'11") that reminds me of Greg Jones from MSU
Erik Magnuson- Top 100 OL that any team would want
Kyle Kalis- top 50 OL that would probably be a guard with how we like our OT very athletic
Royce Jenkins-Stone - very athletic OLB that reminds me of David Perkins
Pharaoh Brown- another 6'6" DE that would fit well into our 3-4 as a OLB
Joe Bolden- our staff didnt offer him because he didnt match the 6'4" frame he wanted for LB but has solid offers
Blake Bars- OL with offers from LSU and Florida
 

Old Man Mike

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Each to his own. I wouldn't trade our guys for theirs if I had a gun to my head. They have a few nice linemen, that's true. We've got two ourselves already, and Harrell impressed more than Magnuson at the Opening. but.....Shepard, Greenberry, Ferguson, Darby, Perkins, .... where's anything like that? Now along comes Okwara. [somebody who looks to be off the charts on current and forecasted strength and explosiveness]. By the time Kelly gets a few more verbals [like Peat, Day, etc etc], this will be out-of-sight.
 

NDPhilly

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Each to his own. I wouldn't trade our guys for theirs if I had a gun to my head. They have a few nice linemen, that's true. We've got two ourselves already, and Harrell impressed more than Magnuson at the Opening. but.....Shepard, Greenberry, Ferguson, Darby, Perkins, .... where's anything like that? Now along comes Okwara. [somebody who looks to be off the charts on current and forecasted strength and explosiveness]. By the time Kelly gets a few more verbals [like Peat, Day, etc etc], this will be out-of-sight.

oh I 100% agree with you. There not getting near the athletes that we are. I also think Okwara will have a Councellesque jump up the rankings once he shows himself at the shrine bowl.
 
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IrishLax

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Good snippet of their impact recruits. There is no denying that Michigan has a good class, but I also don't think they're world beaters.

Went through Michigan's commitments and made list of who I would have liked ND to have gotten.

Jarrod Wilson- nice frame for a Safety and would have topped of our DB class very well Agreed he would be a good capstone to the class but he is no better than Prosise imo. Just gets more pub because he plays in Ohio versus middle-of-nowhere VA. Watch their highlights and look at the ESPN profiles side by side if you don't believe me.
Tom Strobel- 6'6" DE that seems like if he has the athleticism would be a perfect fit as a OLB in our 3-4 To my knowledge never really pursued by staff
James Ross- undersized MLB (5'11") that reminds me of Greg Jones from MSU potential impact player, one of ND's few ILB offers, but size is definitely a question
Erik Magnuson- Top 100 OL that any team would want Definitely a good player, but totally sucked at the opening based on what I read today
Kyle Kalis- top 50 OL that would probably be a guard with how we like our OT very athletic Really far down on our "big board" from what I read at ISD and considered overrated
Royce Jenkins-Stone- very athletic OLB that reminds me of David Perkins NO OFFER (or from OSU)
Pharaoh Brown- another 6'6" DE that would fit well into our 3-4 as a OLB NO OFFER (or from OSU)
Joe Bolden- our staff didnt offer him because he didnt match the 6'4" frame he wanted for LB but has solid offers NO OFFER (or from OSU)
Blake Bars- OL with offers from LSU and Florida NO OFFER

Also, you left off Terry Richardson who (while talented) I would not take over Tee or Darby... or Reeves or Davis. Richardson, along with all of the other Michigan recruits, showed absolutely nothing at The Opening.

So to break it down... 4 of their impact recruits had no offer from us. They have two OL who are quite highly touted BUT the staff on ISD doesn't like Kalis very much at all and wouldn't take him over Harrel and Magnuson sucked when put up against good competition at The Opening. They have a safety == to Prosise. And they have a DE we never really pushed for (correct me if wrong) and James Rosse.

So of all of their super-awesome class they only have one guy, James Ross, who we would even really consider a "miss" for ND. I just don't see the "wow" players outside of maybe Ross... but again, there is no denying that this is a strong class with a lot of great depth pieces. Certainly not quaking in my boots right now though.
 

NYIrish14

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I was happy when we first offered Okwara because he reminds me alot of Shembo. Not because they went to the same high school but that their both very strong for high school players and already seem to be physically ready for the game. However, Okwara might need more time to develop fundamentally but he has the same type of player as Shembo.
 

Who'saWildManNow

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Michgan's class is rock solid. If their class was ours, we'd be calling every guy the 'RKG' and raving about our class. If you don't think it's solid, you're in denial and having a hard time taking off the bias shades. The only question is if they keep it together.

I beleive OMMs reason for this thread was to point out the recent lack of offensive skill player recruiting for Michigan, not to bash the talent of the class. It is a talented class, no doubt. This and last years class for UM are loaded with defensive talent and he even got necessary OL kids this year. IMO, it is obvious what Hoke is doing. He has enough on offense, especially with Denard, to run the pro. He has 6 spots left in the class to get skill players. If not, he has next year. Hoke and Mattison are simply living by the "defense wins championships" motto.
 
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