The year has changed in number, and the new era in Harbaugh has begun.
With a new era comes a new found vision, and with the change back to college, comes recruiting. With a month to go before National Signing Day, Jim Harbaugh must act quick in filling this class right.
It has been made public the recruits that Harbaugh has already contacted, but there are three recruits who stand out in terms of importance above the rest. These three recruits could very well, also be the most crucial in terms of impact both on the field and off. I took a deeper look at this and ranked the three recruits in terms of importance and impact, if they were to commit to Michigan.
1. Chris Clark
Chris Clark, a tight end from Connecticut, who is widely considered the top tight end available in the 2015 class is easily the top target for Michigan as it stands and also the one recruit who is most important for the team ON the field.
In a Jim Harbaugh offense, tight ends have thrived (Ertz, Fleener, Davis). The Tight end is arguably the most important piece of the offense because Harbaugh tends to run a ton of 2 TE sets and needs playmakers in that position. Clark has shown that he could be a playmaker and so much more.
At 6’5 245lbs, Clark has all the tools to make any play needed, while also moving inside to block when the duty calls. Clark would give a new dimension to the Michigan offense, along with Jake Butt. A landing of Clark would also show that the top players in the country want to go to Michigan and could help the recruitment of others.
2. Iman Marshall
This one may come as a surprise to many of you due to the fact that the major interest from Marshall has just truly begun with the hiring of Harbaugh. Marshall is arguably the top CB available in 2015 and would prove to be an instant difference maker in a Michigan secondary that will feature budding star Jourdan Lewis and a healthy returning superstar in Jabrill Peppers. Peppers, Lewis, and potentially Marshall could combine to form one of the best secondaries in college football and at times make any opposing offense one dimensional.
Play, and talent aside, perhaps the biggest impact of a potential Iman Marshall commitment would come in the recruiting game. The addition of Iman Marshall could open pipelines for Michigan in the west coast that the Wolverines haven’t seen since the days of Lloyd Carr. The commitment of Marshall could prove to be worthy in his own class with interest coming from fellow California prospects Cordell Broadus and Colin Samuel.
A verbal from Marshall would be the ultimate game changer and would have an effect on future classes for Michigan by drawing new found interest from California and its neighboring states.
I have mentioned recently that I believe our chances with Marshall are much better than major media outlets are reporting, especially with a stellar defensive staff being constructed. I still believe that as it stands USC is ahead by a rather large margin, while saying we have a 20% chance of landing him. One thing to keep your eye on is how well the visit goes. If the visit goes exceptionally well, than our chances drastically increase.
3. Mike Weber
Mike Weber’s importance is pretty self explanatory. Weber decommitted during the Wolverines past season and since has committed to Ohio State, and Urban Meyer, Michigan’s top rival going forward. Not only would the landing of Weber mark the first victory of hopefully many against the Buckeyes going forward, the verbal from Weber could continue the Michigan Pipeline at Cass Tech and help add a supreme talent to an already solid backfield core. Some may view the recruitment of Weber as a pride battle, but the kid can flat out run with the best of them and is an elite talent at his position for the 2015 class.
With the many uncertainties of recruiting today, there is one given and that is that this stretch run for Harbaugh and Michigan leading up to NSD could be one of the most fun to watch in recent memory and could also bring upon just a few surprises while potentially laying the groundwork for a very successful foundation for years to come.