Senior defensive tackle Michael Williams has spent four years at Stanford but he's ready for a change of scenery. The 6-2, 290-pounder redshirted in 2016 but then became a regular along the defensive line for the Cardinal and ultimately finished his career out west as a two-year starter. As a redshirt junior this past year, Williams recorded 24 tackles including six for loss and a sack.
Now, a graduate transfer who will be immediately eligible in 2020, Williams is ready to suit up for a new program and Michigan might end up being the spot. Before he rules Michigan out or decided to move forward with them, he'll have a sit down with a couple coaches.
"Coach [Shaun] Nua and Coach [Jim] Harbaugh are coming out to see me," Williams said. "They're going to fly out to me after the bowl game to talk and see if we mesh with each other. We've only talked once but we agreed to talk more after the holiday season and their bowl game."
Even before meeting with the coaches, Williams already has a pretty idea about Michigan as a school and a program.
"I know it's a very well-connected school," Williams said. "I've also heard stories about Harbaugh as a coach. I feel like I know a decent amount but in-person visits will be the most important for me."
With those in-person meetings right around the corner, Williams knows what he's looking for and is excited to see if Michigan checks his boxes.
"I need to see the connections," he said. "I want to know how I will be used and see which program I can get into. Also I need to see how I mesh with Coach Nua."
Williams is also considering SMU, Vanderbilt and Rice, which would seem to indicate that Michigan is in the driver's seat, especially in terms of football. Williams is very serious about his academics, though, so that fit is going to be big for him. As Williams said, if Nua does a good job with him, there's a good chance he'll be in Ann Arbor next fall. I've spent a decent amount of time with Nua — there's no way he doesn't impress Williams in a big way.