Final 2018 Best Guess Recruiting Class

The 2018 recruiting class will end up being the lowest ranked full class of the Harbaugh-era but should produce for Michigan. Full of height, size and athleticism, there’s a lot of “projects” in here but, thanks to building a good base with the first two full classes, this class will be able to develop and find its roles on the team.

As for the chance to adding anything more before/on National Signing Day, it’s not very likely but anything’s possible.

Check out how I put together my final 2018 Best Guess Recruiting Class:

  • Transfers: Michigan has two transfers already coming in 2018 and has, at least, one more target left on the board.
  • Class Size: Going into NSD, Michigan has 23 scholarships accounted for in 2018. That includes all of the current signees, transfers and commits.That number could end up going either way with one possible decommitment and one transfer left on the board.
  • Position Numbers: The staff has loaded up at multiple position groups outside of the offensive line. And it looks like things will end with the OL missing out on its final targets.
  • Class Attrition: Michigan signed all but 4 of its, only one of which looks to be a possibility to sign elsewhere. That would be Otis Reese, who is a close call between UM and Georgia. If Reese sticks, Michigan will end with 5 total decommitments throughout the entire cycle. QB Kevin Doyle recently joined TE Leonard Taylor, OG Jalil Irvin, LB Antwuan Johnson and Emil Ekiyor on the decommit list.

Chances Key:

  • Excellent – Top Team/Expected to Land
  • Very Good – Top 2-3/Realistic Possibility  
  • Good – Top 5/Sticking Around
  • Fair – Top 10/Puncher’s Chance
  • Poor – Hardly Mentioned/Unlikey to Happen

Check out the final 2018 Michigan football recruiting class prediction, including (for the first time) transfers:

1. QB: Shea Patterson, 6’2” 221lbs. Toledo, OH (Ole Miss; Transfer)

Shea Patterson. Photo Credit: Bobby McDuffie/The Sun Herald

Photo Credit: Bobby McDuffie/The Sun Herald

At this point, all signs continue to point towards Patterson being ruled eligible immediately which will completely change the Wolverines projections for the upcoming season. It’ll be a dogfight in the spring and summer between him, Brandon Peters and Dylan McCaffrey but I see Patterson’s escapability, experience and overall talent winning out.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • 2018 Eligibility: Junior
  • Commitment Date: 12/10/17
  • 2016 Recruiting RankingsRivals (5*, #3 overall) – 247Sports (5*, #3 overall) – ESPN (4*, #15 overall)
  • 2016 Composite Recruiting Ranking: Five star, #4 overall, #1 QB, #1 in Florida

2. QB: Joe Milton, 6’6” 225lbs. Orlando, FL (Olympia) 

Joe Milton

Photo Credit: OrangeObserver.com

Milton is also enrolled at Michigan and is also expected to make an impact on the quarterback depth chart this spring and summer. He looks like a NCAA Football player creation at quarterback as he has elite size, athleticism and arm strength. However, he still needs to tighten up his mechanics and reads after throwing for less than a 50% completion rate during his senior season. Expect a redshirt year from Milton in 2018 before truly fighting for a starting spot in his sophomore season and beyond.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 5/7/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: April 2017
  • Rankings: Rivals (4*, #200 overall) – 247Sports (3*, #427 overall) – ESPN (4*, #119 overall)
  • Composite Ranking: Four star, #204 overall, #9 Pro QB, #35 in Florida

3. ATH: Michael Barrett, 6’0” 220lbs. Valdosta, GA (Lowndes) 

Jamie Wachter | The Valdosta Daily

Jamie Wachter | The Valdosta Daily

Barrett is the latest full scholarship addition to the class and one that is being completely slept on. He’s a game changer. Simple as that. His position may not be solidified just yet, as he could play multiple positions on offensive and defense, including slot receiver, wildcat QB, viper linebacker and safety. Wherever he ends up, expect him to make an impact pretty early in his career.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 1/23/18
  • Signing Date: 2/7/18
  • First on List: May 2017
  • Rankings: Rivals (3* ATH) – 247Sports (3*, #69 ATH) – ESPN (3*, #49 ATH)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #741 overall, #61 ATH, #72 in Georgia

4. RB: Christian Turner, 5’11” 190lbs. Buford, GA (Buford) 

Photo Credit: David McGregor/Gwinnett Prep Sports

Photo Credit: David McGregor/Gwinnett Prep Sports

Turner showed out in the International Bowl as he led Team USA to a blowout win over Team Canada. He’s a better prospect than his ranking may suggest but I don’t expect him to contribute right away. A redshirt year may be necessary in 2018 but once the depth chart opens up and develops a little more, he should have the chance to get plenty of meaningful reps.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 4/10/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: April 2017
  • RankingsRivals (3*, #18 RB) – 247Sports (3*, #37 RB) – ESPN (4*, #21 RB)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #506 overall, #22 RB, #54 in Georgia

5. RB: Hassan Haskins, 6’2” 205lbs. Eureke, MO (Eureka) 

Photo Credit: Ben Loewnau/STLhighschoolsports.com

Photo Credit: Ben Loewnau/STLhighschoolsports.com

Haskins was a surprise addition to the class but he’s a guy I believe fans will like a lot. He’s another get in this class that should have a bigger impact during his career than his ranking may suggest. And it could come early on. Though Chris Evans and Karan Higdon look to have the top two spots locked down, the rest of Michigan’s running back depth chart is a big question. After possibly a redshirt year, I think Haskins could fight for a starting spot in his second or third seasons.

  • Story 
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 10/29/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: November 2017
  • Rankings: Rivals (3*, #40 RB) – 247Sports (3*, #70 RB) – ESPN (3*, #55 RB)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #968 overall, #49 RB, #11 in Missouri

6. FB/HB: Ben VanSumeren, 6’3” 230lbs. Essexville, MI (Garber) 

Lee Thompson | MLive.com

Lee Thompson | MLive.com

VanSumeren was one of the late additions to the class right before the early signing period. Like 2017 fullback signee Ben Mason, VanSumeren has a chance to play early on in his career. He’s got the build to play at the collegiate level and an early path to playing time. Khalid Hill and Henry Poggi have graduated so Mason and, possibly, Jared Wangler are the only scholarship fullbacks left on the roster. Whether it’s as a backup fullback or covering kickoffs, I believe he could see the field this fall.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 12/17/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on the List: December 2017
  • RankingsRivals (3*, #34 ATH) – 247Sports (3*, #62 ATH) – ESPN (3*, #52 ATH)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #620 overall, #50 ATH, #12 in Michigan

7. WR: Ronnie Bell, 6’1” 170lbs. Kansas City, MO (Park Hill) 

Photo Credit: Darryl Woods, 810 Varsity

Photo Credit: Darryl Woods, 810 Varsity

Bell was unable to sign with Michigan during the early signing period because of a previous agreement with Missouri State for basketball. However, he’s still firmly committed to Michigan and will sign with UM on the 7th. He’ll likely take some time to make an impact but he has the raw talent and athleticism to be a pretty good player during his career.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 12/18/17
  • Signing Date: 2/7/18
  • First on the List: December 2017
  • RankingsRivals (2*) – 247Sports (3*, #169 WR) – ESPN (2*, #125 WR)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #1467 overall, #214 WR, #18 in Missouri

8. TE: Luke Schoonmaker, 6’6” 235lbs. Hamden, CT (Hamden Hall) 

Schoonmaker went from basically being an unknown recruit to being a Michigan commit to being an All-American. He’s no longer flying under the radar though he is another guy multiple analysts believe will outplay his ranking. His mix of size, speed and athleticism makes him a problem at the position in this offense.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 7/25/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: July 2017
  • RankingsRivals (3*, #39 TE) – 247Sports (3*, #40 TE) – ESPN (3*, #20 TE)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #770 overall, #36 TE, #3 in Connecticut

9. TE: Mustapha Muhammad, 6’4” 235lbs. Missouri City, TX (Ridge Point)

Photo Credit: Hudl.com

Photo Credit: Hudl.com

Muhammad may have slid down the rankings a bit but he remains inside the top200. The depth at the tight end position is deep but Muhammad is one of the more college ready prospects in this class. He may not be a superstar during his time at Michigan but he should be a productive player in Harbaugh’s offense, especially with the quarterback play expected to improve drastically.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 10/20/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: August 2016
  • Rankings: Rivals (4*, #17 TE) – 247Sports (4*, #227 overall) – ESPN (4*, #42 overall)
  • Composite Ranking: Four star, #167 overall, #6 TE, #16 in Texas

10. TE/OT: Ryan Hayes, 6’7” 255lbs. Traverse City, MI (TC West)

Photo Credit: Josh Newkirk/Scout

Photo Credit: Josh Newkirk/Scout

Hayes is one of the most interesting additions to the class. He has a very high ceiling as an offensive tackle but he has still has a ways to go to grow into that position. So, he’s expected to start his career at tight end where he’ll likely be used in heavy sets as a blocking-specialist. But after 2-3 years, he’s a name to watch at the offensive tackle position.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 5/27/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: March 2017
  • Rankings: Rivals (3*, #48 OT) – 247Sports (4*, #140 overall) – ESPN (4*, #29 OT)
  • Composite Ranking: Four star, #333 overall, #23 OT, #5 in Michigan

11. OT: Jalen Mayfield, 6’5” 250lbs. Grand Rapids, MI (Catholic Central)

Photo Credit: MLive.com

Photo Credit: MLive.com

Mayfield is a four star, top 300 recruit and a guy I believe will end up being a really productive player for Michigan. He still has a ways to go to be physically ready to really contribute at the collegiate level but his raw size and athleticism will help him standout but it’s his aggressive, play until the whistle mentality that should get him on the field by his redshirt sophomore season, if not earlier.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 5/23/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: March 2017
  • Rankings: Rivals (4*, #17 OT) – 247Sports (4*, #126 overall) – ESPN (3*, #72 OT)
  • Composite Ranking: Four star, #267 overall, #16 OT, #4 in Michigan

12. OT: Calvin Anderson, 6’5” 300lbs. Austin, TX (Rice; Transfer)

Photo Credit: David Minton, Denton Record-Chronicle

Photo Credit: David Minton, Denton Record-Chronicle

If we’re talking about immediate impacts, Anderson would be the 2nd most important get in this “class”. Offensive tackle is a huge need for the team in 2018 and beyond. There aren’t any guarantees at the position from the current options on the roster. Adding Anderson would (potentially) sure up (probably) Shea Patterson’s blindside, that’s IF he were to pick Michigan. And that’s a big if as most have been/still are expecting him to stay in-state and choose Texas. But, according to TMI’s Steve Lorenz’s source following Anderson’s official visit to Ann Arbor, it could end up being the Longhorns or the Wolverines ($). A decision isn’t expected until March so there’s plenty of time left and a lot could still happen but I’ll add Anderson to the list, expecting him to choose the coaching staff with more NFL coaches and the roster with a better chance of winning immediately over his mom’s alma mater/in-state school.

  • Offer: Yes
  • Visit: 1/26/18
  • Highlights
  • 2018 Eligibility: Fifth Year Senior
  • 2014 Recruiting Rankings: Rivals (2*) – 247Sports (2*, #163 OT) – ESPN (NR)
  • 2014 Composite Recruiting Ranking: Two Star, #2432 overall, #189 OT, #366 in Texas

13. DL: Taylor Upshaw, 6’6” 245lbs. Bradenton, FL (Braden River)

Photo Credit: YourObserver.com

Photo Credit: YourObserver.com

Upshaw is one of the projects in this class for the staff but with NFL bloodlines and the raw talent mixed with a large frame, it was one the staff was happy to take on. He’s only played football for a couple seasons, so it may be some time before he makes a big impact thanks to him adapting to this level and the depth chart clearing up a bit. But even with time needed, he’ll still be a guy to pay attention to during the spring game. As an early enrollee, he’ll have an upperhand on his fellow freshmen. We’ll see if he can take advantage of it.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 11/24/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: November 2017
  • RankingsRivals (3*, #25 SDE) – 247Sports (3*, #23 SDE) – ESPN (3*, #68 DE)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #557 overall, #24 SDE, #88 in Florida

14. SDE: Aidan Hutchinson, 6’7” 250lbs. Dearborn, MI (Divine Child) 

Photo Credit: AJC.com

Photo Credit: AJC.com

There wasn’t a name on this list that didn’t help himself out more in the final months of the cycle than Hutchinson. He put on a show at the US Army All-American game at the beginning of January, receiving multiple post-game honors. He’s starting to put on the size needed to play at the collegiate level. And that motor isn’t going anywhere. Another year of gains and adding a move or two to his repertoire and he could be the perfect replacement for Chase Winovich off the edge in 2019.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 2/22/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: May 2016
  • RankingsRivals (4*, #129 overall) – 247Sports (4*, #88 overall) – ESPN (4*, #193 overall)
  • Composite Ranking: Four star, #112 overall, #6 SDE, #1 in Michigan

15. WDE: Julius Welschof, 6’6” 250lbs. Munich, Germany 

Photo Credit: Scout.com

Photo Credit: Scout.com

Juice is a guy the Michigan coaching staff is very high on. And for good reason. Though Welschof has very little experience playing against American players, you can’t deny his freak size and athleticism. He’s legit 6’6” 250 lb. freestyle mogul skier who was clocked running a 4.55 forty and was a standout at every camp he attended, including both Michigan and Ohio State’s summer camps. It may take him some time to get adjusted to this level of the game but he’s a guy that could see time early on pass rushing downs during his first two seasons.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 12/20/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: December 2017
  • RankingsRivals (3*) – 247Sports (4*, #14 SDE) – ESPN (3*, #66 DE)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #642 overall, #28 SDE, #1 in Germany

16. VLB: Otis Reese, 6’4” 205lbs. Lee County, GA (Lee County)

Photo Credit: TheWolverine.com

Photo Credit: TheWolverine.com

Reese will be the one Letter of Intent every Michigan fan will be impatiently waiting for to come in on Wednesday. And it’s looking like it just may be heading to Ann Arbor and not Athens, as both The Wolverine’s Brandon Brown and Dawgs247’s Rusty Mansell have reported. After his recent official visit to Georgia at the end of January, it looked like there was a chance he could flip to the Bulldogs, like a lot of people expected. However, according to 247Sports’ Steve Wiltfong, the last in-home visit may have locked things up for Michigan ($). But nothing’s a guarantee until that LOI comes in.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 6/20/16
  • Signing Date: 2/7/18
  • First on List: August 2016
  • Rankings: Rivals (4*, #56 overall) – 247Sports (4*, #73 overall) – ESPN (4*, #230 overall)
  • Composite Ranking: Four star, #87 overall, #5 OLB, #12 in Georgia

17. LB: Cameron McGrone, 6’2” 215lbs. Indianapolis, IN (Lawrence Central)

Photo Credit: Kenneth Moreland / VictoryViews

Photo Credit: Kenneth Moreland / VictoryViews

McGrone is easily one of my favorite players in this class. I believe he could be an All-American at Michigan. He has that much potential in Don Brown’s defense as he’s one of the best sideline-to-sideline linebackers in this class and shows that athleticism and speed throughout his film. Though there’s a ton of talent on the roster at linebaker, he’s a guy I see potentially playing his freshmen year butt definitely playing his sophomore season, and playing a lot.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 7/31/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: June 2017
  • RankingsRivals (4*, #195 overall) – 247Sports (5*, #24 overall) – ESPN (4*, #206 overall)
  • Composite Ranking: Four star, #118 overall, #7 OLB, #2 in Indiana

18. FS: German Green, 6’2” 180lbs. DeSoto, TX (DeSoto) 

Green had a nice showing in the International Bowl, registering an interception in Team USA’s win. He’s bounced back from the knee injury he suffered his junior year and looks like he could be a nice player for Michigan. However, he’ll need to add on some more size to contribute. Luckily he’ll have time to do so with plenty of young talent on the depth chart.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 4/20/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: April 2017
  • RankingsRivals (3* S) – 247Sports (3*, #79 S) – ESPN (3*, #105 CB)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #1226 overall, #98 S, #175 in Texas

19. DB: Casey Hughes, 6’0” 185lbs. Las Vegas, NV (Utah;Transfer) 

Photo Credit: Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribun

Photo Credit: Trent Nelson | The Salt Lake Tribun

Hughes became the 2nd transfer for Michigan, following in Shea Patterson’s footsteps and committing to the Wolverines on January 21st, right after his first visit to Ann Arbor. As a graduate transfer, he’s expected to come in and compete for the starting spot at safety and nickel corner. His physical play and experience should give the secondary and special teams a boost.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date:1/21/18
  • 2018 Eligibility: Fifth Year Senior
  • 2014 Recruiting RankingsRivals (2*) – 247Sports (2*, #147 CB) – ESPN (2*, #151 S)
  • 2014 Composite Ranking: Three star, #1595 overall, #126 CB, #10 in Nevada

20. DB: Vincent Gray, 6’2” 180lbs. Rochester, MI (Adams)

Photo Credit: Tanya Moutzalias | MLive Detroit

Photo Credit: Tanya Moutzalias | MLive Detroit

Gray was one of the latest additions to the class but is another lower rated guy that I’m pretty high on. His size, physicality and coverage skills standout on his tape and should only improve with his time with the coaches and trainers. He may not play immediately but he’s a guy I believe will make an impact at some point during his career.

  • Story 
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 1/21/18
  • Signing Date: 2/7/18
  • First on List: Now
  • RankingsRivals (3*, #60 CB) – 247Sports (3*, #78 CB) – ESPN (3*, #85 CB)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #695 overall, #63 CB, #18 in Michigan

21. DB: Sammy Faustin, 6’2” 170lbs. Naples, FL (Naples) 

While Faustin may not have the amount of stars that fans want, his game is everything Don Brown and Michigan crave out of defensive backs. He’s long, aggressive and isn’t afraid to come up to make a hit. And like a lot of the other guys Brown’s recruited, he has the size and the athleticism to play either cornerback or safety in college. I like him at strong safety but he could start his career off at the nickel or dime.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 8/2/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: August 2017
  • Rankings: Rivals (3*, #62 CB) – 247Sports (3*, #86 CB) – ESPN (3*, #50 CB)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #588 overall, #54 CB, #93 in Florida

22. DB: Myles Sims, 6’3″ 175lbs. Atlanta, GA (Westlake) 

Spider is a guy I’ve been extremely high on for awhile now and still believe he may end up having one of the best college and pro careers out of any player in this class. He’s a corner by trade but it’s unknown if he’ll stay there throughout his college career. His size, length and ball hawking ability mixed with his early enrollment should help him become a standout in Don Brown’s secondary in his first two seasons.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 4/7/2017
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: March 2017
  • Rankings: Rivals (4*, #103 overall) – 247Sports (3*, #44 CB) – ESPN (4*, #137 overall)
  • Composite Ranking: Four star, #169 overall, #17 CB, #21 in Georgia

23. CB: Gemon Green, 6’2” 175lbs. DeSoto, TX (DeSoto) 

Green is a sticky, coverage corner that has played against some of the best potential in the country in Texas. That experience should help him compete for playing time immediately when he gets on campus this summer. And with playing time available behind the two standout starting corners (David Long and Lavert Hill), he’s a guy who may make some waves in camp.

  • Story
  • Highlights
  • Commitment Date: 4/20/17
  • Signing Date: 12/20/17
  • First on List: April 2017
  • Rankings: Rivals (4*, #39 CB) – 247Sports (3*, #38 CB) – ESPN (4*, #46 CB)
  • Composite Ranking: Three star, #380 overall, #35 CB, #52 in Texas

24. K: Jake Moody, 6’1” 180lbs. Northville, MI (Northille) 

Photo Credit: Jake Moody/Twitter

Photo Credit: Jake Moody/Twitter

Moody is the latest commitment for the class, though he’s going to be on a grayshirt/blueshirt. But even though he likely won’t immediately be on scholarship for Michigan this fall, he’s a nice get for this class. Adding the top kicker in the class to compete with and eventually replace the top kicker in the 2016 class will only benefit the program.

Projected Class Score: 240.42 (per 247Sports)

Barring a big surprise on the trail, Michigan will finish with this final score which should land the Wolverines somewhere between the 15th and 20th spots in the country. This will end up being Harbaugh’s lowest ranked full class during his tenure. Not ideal for the recruiting class but when you add in the transfers, this class has a lot of talent, potential starts and impact role players.

Just Missed

Off the Board

Garrett Fishaw

Born and raised in Metro Detroit. Played soccer and graduated from Seton Hill University. SEO and Content Specialist. Owner and Managing Editor of MGoFish.com