Recruiting Rundown: Week 2 - Washington

Michigan's game against Washington is going to be one of the biggest recruiting events of the season.
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Each week on Thursday (or Friday), we'll take a look back at the week's developments on the recruiting trail. When Michigan is home, obviously visitors will be in town, and when Michigan is away, offers are still going out and the coaches will be out on the road scouting players. Combine that with prospects trimming lists, recapping their visits and competing for their high school teams, and there's plenty to talk about. 

Massive Visit Weekend

Michigan is set to host several five-star prospects, top targets and commits during the Washington game and with the Huskies reeling a bit after the loss to Montana, U-M could really capitalize on the opportunity.

Biggest Fish

Miami Gulliver Prep 2023 wide receiver Jalen Brown

As a Florida kid, The Sunshine State schools, specifically Florida State, are the biggest threat to land Brown, but he likes Michigan a lot. The fact that he's coming in this weekend on his own dime obviously suggest that and he's close with U-M legend Desmond Howard, who volunteers at his high school. Brown is one of the top receivers in the entire country and can absolutely fly. He's not the biggest at 6-1, 170 pounds, but is he considered one of the best.

Seattle Rainier Beach 2022 offensive tackle Josh Conerly

This one is obviously really intriguing because Conerly is a Washington kid. He's very high on Michigan and will be in town in an official capacity this weekend. He's arguably Michigan's top offensive target at this point and he knows it. Texas, USC and Washington are all heavily involved as well, so U-M beating the Huskies would go a long way with the 6-5, 275-pounder.

Merrillville (Ind.) High 2022 defensive tackle Kenneth Grant

At 6-4, 335 pounds, Grant is a big boy and definitely a priority for Michigan along the defensive line. He's not the highest-rated prospect on the visitor list, but he's up there in importance. He told Wolverine Digest that he's not planning to commit this weekend, but that it could be a possibility. 

Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei 2022 cornerback Domani Jackson

Everyone who follows Michigan recruiting knows about Jackson. He's 6-1, 185 pounds, can absolutely fly, has great ball skills and is as smart as they come in the secondary. He's currently committed to USC but has had this visit to Michigan on the docket for a long time. He's extremely close with fellow five-star cornerback and Michigan commit Will Johnson, so the fact that both of them will be in Ann Arbor this weekend in an official capacity is a big deal.

Kennesaw (Ga.) North Cobb 2022 outside linebacker Joshua Josephs

At 6-3, 215 pounds, Josephs is all arms and legs. He's extremely long, very athletic and fits Michigan's new scheme perfectly. That's why U-M is bringing him in for an official visit this weekend. He's been on campus before so this weekend's return visit is a big deal. Tennessee and Kentucky are the other two schools heavily involved, but U-M could take the lead for good this weekend.

Detroit Martin Luther King Jr. 2023 quarterback Dante Moore

Moore is a big target for several reasons. One, he's obviously an in-state kid with heavy connections to former Michigan quarterback Devin Gardner. Two, he's pretty much U-M's only target at quarterback in the 2023 class. And three, he's really, really good as the No. 3 quarterback in the country according to 247 Sports. He's really high on Michigan, but he's originally from Ohio and really likes the Buckeyes too. OSU's depth at the position works in Michigan's favor, but he's still a coveted prospect with lots of options.

Seattle O'Dea 2022 offensive guard Mark Nabou

Like Conerly, Nabou is another massive prospect prospect — both figuratively and literally — from Washington state. His official visit to Michigan is big as well, as he feels like U-M's biggest interior offensive lineman target. He was once committed to the in-state Huskies, and they're still involved, so a Michigan win would send a strong message. Texas A&M is also in the mix.

Powell (Tenn.) High 2022 defensive tackle Walter Nolen

If Michigan fans know all about Domani Jackson, they likely know about Nolen as well. The 6-4, 325-pound defender is elite athletically and really dominates the middle of the line of scrimmage. He is target No. 1 for Michigan in the 2022 class so getting him back on campus, despite not making the cut in his final three, is a very big deal. Nolen is extremely focused on the NIL movement and Michigan is flat out blowing it there. If that can somehow come together, and U-M can win on Saturday, it could give Nolen something to seriously think about.

Detroit Cass Tech 2022 defensive tackle Deone Walker

At 6-6, 340 pounds, Walker is yet another massive target, both figuratively and literally. For some of the same reasons as Dante Moore, Walker is a must-get for U-M. He's at a position of need, in the backyard and good at what he does. He's actually quite high on Missouri, but it just feels like Michigan will win out here. Walker is close with several Michigan commits, including Mario Eugenio, so there are people with pull in his ear when it comes to the Wolverines.

Very Realistic Targets

West Bloomfield (Mich.) High 2023 offensive guard Amir Herring

Herring is a very motivated, high-academic kid and loves Michigan. Earlier this year at a camp, Herring got into a mix up with former U-M pledge Davonte Miles and someone from the crowd yelled out, "Y'all are both Michigan commits! Try to get along!" That tells you what the perception is around him as a recruit. At 6-4, 280 pounds, Herring has great size and moves extremely well for an interior lineman that big. He's probably not close to pulling the trigger, but Michigan makes a ton of sense for him already.

West Bloomfield (Mich.) High 2023 wide receiver Semaj Morgan

Morgan picked up a Michigan offer after an impressive camp circuit this summer and is now viewed as a very realistic target for U-M should they push for him. He's 5-10, 175 pounds, extremely quick and has great hands, which he puts on display quite regularly. He has a knack for making big plays and is very dangerous in the open field. He's very much like AJ Henning, Mike Sainristil and former U-M wide receiver Giles Jackson in terms of his size, skill set and overall make up as a receiver. He too feels like a future Wolverine if both parties get on the same page.

Detroit Cass Tech 2023 defensive end Jalen Thompson

Another in-state, 2023 prospect, Thompson has to be viewed as a realistic target as well, but the Spartans have made him a top priority. Michigan has been involved for a while, but not as heavily as MSU. At 6-3, 245 pounds, he feels like a bit of a tweener in Michigan's new scheme, but he's got some talent and definitely has some upside.

Commits

Belleville (Mich.) High 2022 athlete Aaron Alexander

Alexander has been committed to Michigan since mid-June and doesn't appear to be wavering. A big part of that is because he's only got two other offers from Eastern Illinois and Marshall. At 6-1, 205 pounds, he's essentially a viper, which we know is no longer a part of Michigan's defense. It'll be interesting to see if anything changes for Alexander moving forward because he doesn't exactly feel like a scheme fit at this point.

Grosse Pointe (Mich.) Grosse Pointe South 2022 cornerback Will Johnson

Johnson committed to Michigan in February and has been the face of the class and the biggest recruiter for U-M ever since. His presence on campus this weekend will be huge for guys like Walter Nolen and Domani Jackson as he's been around both of them before and has never stopped trying to get them to join him in Ann Arbor. Johnson has confidence and a great presence about him because of how smart he is and also because he's one of the top cornerbacks in the entire country.

Monument (Colo.) Palmer Ridge 2022 offensive tackle Connor Jones

At 6-7, 285 pounds, Jones has a good look to him. He's got a lot of room to fill out in his upper body, but his lower body is strong and powerful. He's been committed to Michigan since December of last year and does not appear to be looking around.

Germantown (Tenn.) High 2022 athlete Kody Jones

At 5-11, 175 pounds, Jones is extremely versatile and dangerous with the ball in his hands. Michigan likes him on defense, especially in Mike Macdonald's new scheme, which puts an emphasis on versatile, speedy and sticky defensive backs. Jones has been committed to Michigan since February, and is very solid. He's also a fellow Tennessee native and friend of Walter Nolen, which is definitely a solid development for the weekend. It's no mistake that he'll be on campus this weekend with the big defensive tackle.

Brentwood (Tenn.) Ravenwood 2022 cornerback Myles Pollard

What do you know? Another Tennessee native with ties to Walter Nolen. Not only is Pollard going to provide value in recruiting Nolen, he's also going to bring something to the table with Domani Jackson. At 6-2, 185 pounds, Pollard gives U-M another long, rangy and talented cornerback to go along with Will Johnson. If the two of them can convince Jackson to join them in Ann Arbor, whew. That would be the best cornerback haul in the country. 

Young Guns

Saline (Mich.) High 2024 quarterback CJ Carr

He's really young, but as the grandson of former Michigan head coach Lloyd Carr, CJ could probably be in the "realistic targets" category. It's really early, and he's getting attention from other schools, including Michigan State, but U-M is obviously in a good spot with the 6-1, 179-pounder.

Southfield (Mich.) High 2024 quarterback Isaiah Marshall

Marshall isn't exactly built like at typical quarterback at 6-0, 205 pounds. He's a bit squatty, but he's a plus athlete and has an extremely live arm. He's been on Michigan's radar since before his 7th grade year and clearly does a lot well to garner that kind of attention. 

This isn't the complete list by any means, but these are some of the top names worth knowing. It doesn't feel like a commitment is imminent from anyone this weekend, but the environment, a big win and the overall experience has the potential to speed up anyone's timeline. He's got other offers from schools like Cincinnati, Kansas, Kentucky (where Steve Clinkscale was involved), Maryland, Ole Miss, Pittsburgh and Syracuse, but it's way too early to try and figure out what he's going to do. Michigan was first to the party, and is the in-state school, but this one is a long, long way from over.