Early Signing Day Thoughts on Michigan’s 2019 Recruiting Class

Well, that was one hell of an Early Signing Day. Michigan officially signed 25 of its 27 commits, giving Jim Harbaugh the #8 class in the country. But even with one of the best classes of the last decade, there are some upset fans. 

For the haters, stop whining, ya babies. Yeah, it’s too bad that Michigan missed out on Zach HarrisonQuavaris Crouch, and Kalen DeLoach. But misses happen every single recruiting class, or have you already forgot Otis ReeseNajee HarrisDevery HamiltonJean DelanceMike Weber and Chris Clark

Be disappointed when Michigan misses out on its top targets. But don’t be surprised when it happens a couple times every class. There isn’t much more to it than that’s just recruiting. Even Alabama misses on top targets (Hello, Daxton Hill). 

But enough with the negativity, have you looked at who Michigan did sign in this class? If you missed it, Jim Harbaugh and company added the best safety in the country, arguably the best, most college ready running back in the country, the deepest offensive line haul in the country, two top-150 defensive tackles, the best high school quarterback in Nevada state history and, oh yeah, Michigan has the top-ranked class in the Big Ten, which is on pace to break Ohio State’s 8-year streak. 

If you were wondering, this would be the first Michigan has finished with the #1 class in the Big Ten since 2007. Yeah, that long ago. That was Lloyd Carr’s final recruiting class which included five-star QB Ryan Mallett, five-star CB Donovan Warren, four-star WR Junior Hemingway, and three-star C David Molk

That 2007 class of 20 signees wasn’t full of a ton of game changers but it was full of recruiting stars. Like that class, this 2019 group has plenty of stars as well but I believe it is also full of instant and long-term dudes, as Don Brown would say.    

Here are some of my quick takes on Michigan’s 2019 recruiting class at the Early Signing Day point: 

And that doesn’t even include the rest of the signees, which features a lot of really nice impact players, role players, and depth pieces that championship caliber teams need to consistently build. 

So, did Michigan get everyone on their wish list? No. No one ever does. College football recruiting is extremely fluid and a constant roller coaster with flips and spins. 

This class saw four total decommitments from start to finish, which may drop by one if Hill flips back. That list includes four-star CB Te’Cory Couch (signed with Miami), four-star RB Eric Gray (that one hurt; expected to sign with Tennessee), four-star DE Stephen Herron (signed with Stanford) and three-star DL Tyrece Woods, who will sign on National Signing Day.

Speaking of National Signing Day, with 25 players signed and only S Quinten Johnson and ATH Amauri Pesek-Hickson waiting until February 6th to sign with their teammates, the staff can sit back and see who else decides to wait to sign until NSD. 

A couple of positions to watch over are defensive tackle, running back, tight end, and possibl linebacker. There will surely be new targets and probably a couple of new offers given out as the staff’s board expands. But two names I really like and believe could end up signing with Michigan if visits take place are DT D’Von Ellies and DT Jared Harrison-Hunte

Ellies, somewhat ironically enough, reminds me a bit of now former Michigan DT Aubrey Solomon as a high school prospect.  The four-star could be a late steal, if the staff can get him on campus. As for Harrison-Hunte, not only would he be a funny add because of his name but he’s also a guy that is badly wanted by both Don Brown and Greg Mattison, per 247Sports’ Brian Dohn ($). It’ll be interesting to see who the staff pushes for heading down the stretch. 

Overall, Michigan put together one hell of a recruiting class. Arguably the best of the Harbaugh era. And the scary thing is, it could’ve been even better. This is another cornerstone class, similar to 2017’s, that should produce several long-term starters, a lot of heavy contributors, and a couple stars. 

So, cheer up, everyone. Michigan has the best recruiting class in the conference and it’s the holidays.