Two of the biggest stars in sports will help welcome Michigan’s 2016 recruiting class, SI.com has learned.
Four-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback Tom Brady and five-time World Series champion Derek Jeter will be in Ann Arbor on National Signing Day for Michigan’s “Signing of the Stars” party. The event, to be held at the school’s Hill Auditorium, will be streamed live on The Players’ Tribune. The event is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday. The Players’ Tribune is co-hosting the event.
Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh will also attend “Signing of the Stars” to help promote his brother Jim’s program, sources told SI.
Brady played for Michigan from 1995 to 1999. He started every game his junior and senior seasons as the Wolverines went 20-5. Jeter briefly attended the university before launching his illustrious career with the New York Yankees.
Brady and Jeter will add undeniable buzz to a program that has generated plenty since Jim Harbaugh took over a year ago. From Harbaugh’s “Summer Swarm” recruiting tour to his sleepover at a recruit’s house, he has had Michigan in the middle of the college football conversation since he took over. The Wolverines went 10-3 in Harbaugh’s first season.
The “Signing of the Stars” event is the latest unconventional move by Harbaugh. Brady and Jeter will be the biggest stars at an event that will include pro wrestler Ric Flair; former Tigers manager Jim Leyland; former NFL coach Mike Shanahan; former Michigan players Desmond Howard, Denard Robinson and Jon Jansen; longtime collegiate head coach Lou Holtz; baseball pitcher Derek Holland; actress Jessica Szohr; NASCAR driver Brad Keselowski; musicians Josh Gracin, Jack Kennedy, Mayer Hawthorne and Migos; and ESPN draft expert Todd McShay.
Along with the obvious promotional benefit for the football program, Michigan hopes the event raises awareness and money for the ChadTough Foundation for pediatric brain tumors research. The ChadTough foundation honors Chad Carr, the grandson of former Michigan football coach Lloyd Carr, who passed away in November.
Michigan’s recruiting class is ranked fifth in the country on Scout.com and could move higher if the nation’s No. 1 overall prospect, defensive tackle Rashan Gary of New Jersey, chooses the Wolverines. Gary is expected to announce his decision Wednesday. Michigan is considered the favorite to land him.