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Recruiting 2010 - The Insider Answers, Part 7
Michigan head coach Rich Rodriguez
Michigan head coach Rich Rodriguez
CollegeFootballNews.com
Posted Jan 29, 2010


Is Rich Rodriguez getting the right pieces in place? Are the Urban Meyer health issues affecting Florida in any way? Is Oregon State suffering after the Mike Riley to USC rumor? These questions and more in Part Seven of the key questions and insider answers for the 2010 recruiting season.


Recruiting 2010 - Key Questions

The Inside Info - Part Seven

 
What's happening this recruiting season? Several Scout publishers provide their insider info on the key questions that matter to the real world of college football.
 
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 1 - Is Bama taking advantage?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 2 - Is Miami keeping the top players home?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 3 - Do recruits care about JoePa's future? 
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 5 - Does the loss of Carroll matter at USC?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 6 - Did the rumors about Stoops matter at OU?
- Recruiting 2009 - The Key Questions

Q: RichRod made nice strides last year to get some of the pieces in place (like Tate Forcier), and is he close to getting all the right guys with this class? What is he doing to upgrade the Michigan defense?

A:
The next 'big piece' for Coach Rod was landing quarterback Devin Gardner. In any offensive system the quarterback is the key guy, but this is even more true in a spread offense. And now, with Gardner and Tate Forcier plus Denard Robinson, U-M is well stocked with QB talent - although the position will still be a little too-young in 2010. 

The defense is the unit that needs the most talent-infusion for Michigan, and Coach Rod has landed headliners CB Cullen Christian, DT Jibreel Black, LB Josh Furman, S Marvin Robinson and super-sleeper DE Kenny WIlkins so far. In fact U-M's nine most recent commitments all have been defensive players, as well as 15 of the Wolverines' currently-25 commitments overall -- so a strong effort is being made to shore up the D.

In addition, Michigan's three remaining recruits going into Signing Day are all defensive backs: CA S Sean Parker, and FL S/CB's Demar Dorsey and Rashad Knight. If the Wolverines can manage to snag even one of those guys, it's further boost an already-strong defensive class. ... From Tom Beaver, GoBlueWolverine.com

Q:  Have the Urban Meyer health issues had any effect whatsoever? What is Meyer telling recruits?

A: When Urban Meyer first resigned and then decided to just take a leave of absence, it sent a shock wave among recruits like it did everyone else that followed the Gators. The uncertainty involved was like having a program with a coach that was fighting for a winning season in order to keep his job. However, the one thing the situation did do was give Meyer a platform to show everyone that he really cares for the university and that is the last place he wants to coach. That bit of testimonial has gone a long way in erasing any of the nonsense about him possibly wanting another job.

In essence, the situation actually galvanized the group of 19 commitments already in the bag and then pushed them to spur on a bevy of prospects that committed at the two high profile All-American game. It actually really sparked the recruiting for the Gators moving forward and it appears they will land the number one class in the country. ... From Bob Redman, FightinGators.com

Q: Did the Mike Riley to USC rumors hurt Oregon State recruiting at all? Is he able to go head-to-head with Oregon for prospects?

A: Because it only lasted a couple days before the contract extension was announced, it didn't have much of an effect, if any. The Beavers are getting higher rated prospects than they have but Oregon seems to be trending towards a more national recruiting approach than ever before. Oregon State's bread and butter continues to be the Northwest and California, with Hawaii a key recruiting ground. The Beavs are however holding their own when the two schools go head to head in a lot of cases -- 5-star prospect Owamagbe Odighizuwa from Portland being one example. Owa has eliminated Oregon from consideration, and is now deciding between Oregon State, Nebraska and UCLA.

Q: How is Paul Wulff selling the Washington State program and is he getting any upgrades in talent to provide immediate help?

A: Wulff is explaining, in detail, his plan/vision to recruits. For 2 reasons, it looks to have been effective. 1) Recruits talk often that one big reason they decided to go to Washington State is because they have faith in the coaches and that the program is on the rise, and that it will be apparent this season. 2) Wulff has mentioned more than once over the past few months that the Cougars’ 2010 class is among the very best Washington State has ever brought in. There are certainly some players who will get a chance to start, though who they will be is difficult to project. Some of the candidates include DE Brandon Rankin, (holdover from 2009 class) TE’s Aaron Dunn and Asante Cleveland (the Cougs may well have both starting, both on the field at the same time, such is their versatility and athleticism), RB Rickey Galvin, JUCO o-linemen Wade Jacobson and David Gonzales, DT Kalafitoni Pole, as well as others. ... From Barry Bolton, CougFan.com

Q: Has Bret Bielema and his staff given up on going after any of the top national prospects? Under Barry Alvarez, Wisconsin was one of the top recruiting schools and now it seems to just go after the guys who fit the system.

A: Wisconsin will never shy away from going after a top prospect in the Midwest, but what the Badgers won't do is comprise their system. Head Coach Bret Bielema has done a great job of continuing the legacy of Barry Alvarez in closing the state of Wisconsin's borders. This season - the Badgers got every Wisconsin-based athlete it offered, getting talented linebacker Konrad Zagzebski (D.C. Everest), state champion safety Michael Trotter (Milwaukee Marquette). and dominant offensive teammates Jeff Lewis and Bryce Gilbert (Brookfield Central).

The head coach of Wisconsin will always have a challenging job of convincing top out-of-state athletes, especially from southern hotbeds of Florida and Texas, to leave the warm weather of the SEC and come to Wisconsin. Even with that obstacle, the Badgers still got a commitment from St. Thomas Aquinias Running Back James White, the third Raiders player to come to UW in the past two seasons. Not too bad considering Aquinas with the mythical national champion last season.

This year, Wisconsin was able to re-establish roads to the East Coast, something that was prominent under Alvarez. UW got its top quarterback target from New Jersey (Joe Brennan), his multi-dimensional teammate (Sherard Cadogan) and two prospects from Maryland, including Robby Havenstein, who many consider the top lineman on the East Coast. Throw in the fact that UW grabbed the top player from Minnesota (Beau Allen), and life is good for Badgers fans.

UW will continue to recruit hard-nosed, blue-collared guys to fit its system (not only is Archbishop Alter LB Cody Byers a former teammate of Big Ten Rookie of the Year Chris Borland, Borland considers him a better athlete) and with the way things have gone lately for Wisconsin, that's not necessarily a bad thing. ... From Benjamin Worgull - Publisher/Editor Badger Nation

- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 1 - Is Bama taking advantage?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 2 - Is Miami keeping the top players home?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 3 - Do recruits care about JoePa's future? 
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 5 - Does the loss of Carroll matter at USC?
- Recruiting 2010 - The Key Questions, Part 6 - Did the rumors about Stoops matter at OU?
- Recruiting 2009 - The Key Questions