Inside the Fish Bowl is Getting the Red Carpet Ready

With the NCAA tournament going on and Michigan advancing to the Sweet 16, college football recruiting has taken a back seat, in terms of coverage, for at least a couple weeks. But that doesn’t meant there isn’t plenty of things happening on the recruiting trail, including an interesting situation going on with Michigan’s top quarterback target.

Where Will Thompson-Robinson Go? 

As I mentioned in my latest BGRC, I’m hearing that 2018 Bishop Gorman (NV) QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson‘s latest trip to UCLA has put the Bruins at the top of his board with a decision in the not-so-distant future.

That’s why I flipped my Crystal Ball but, like I mentioned, this race isn’t over just yet.

According to multiple reports, Thompson-Robinson is expected to visit Michigan on April 11th alongside his teammate and top UM target, TE Brevin Jordan. And I believe that could be the deciding trip for the talented quarterback recruit.

But, during the trip, Michigan has some ground to make up on UCLA. The path to early playing time is in the Bruins’ favor as UM has been very successful in the last two recruiting cycles. And there’s the strong relationship DTR has with former UM assistant and current UCLA offensive coordinator Jedd Fisch.

Michigan’s Pep Hamilton looks to have built a nice foundation early on. So, this trip should be huge for that reason. The Wolverines staff will need to show him how his style of play could get him on the field early and how the Harbaugh-Hamilton duo would be the better choice for his future over the Mora Jr-Fisch duo.

Harbaugh and his staff have showed time and time again how well they do with big time visitors. That’s why I’m remaining optimistic here, in terms of UM’s chances.

But there’s a real chance that the Bruins win out in the end here. This will be a recruitment to watch closely starting in early April.

More Expected Visitors

Thompson-Robinson and Brevin Jordan aren’t the only visitors in the next couple weeks as Michigan is expecting a nice group of top targets to make their way to Ann Arbor in the next month, including:

  • 2018 Lindenhurst (NY) TE Jeremy Ruckert tweeted out his plans to visit Michigan this weekend and this is a big visit for the staff. UM is in need of a big haul at the tight end position in 2018 and Ruckert may be right at the top of the staff’s wish list. Though Ohio State looks to be the favorite at the moment, Michigan’s playing time and tight end usage should greatly improve UM’s chances.
  • According to Wolverine247’s Steve Lorenz, 2018 Don Bosco (NJ) DT Tyler Friday will be visiting Michigan again this weekend ($). Though I don’t expect any surprise commitments this weekend, if there were one that could happen, Friday would probably be the best bet. UM has made him a priority for quite sometime and the pursuit has clearly paid off as Michigan looks to be the favorite here with OSU and Penn State making a push.
  • According to Wolverine247, 2018 Hapeville (GA) CB Chris Smith will make his way up to Michigan on March 29th ($). Smith looks to be a player that the Michigan staff is high on as he looks to fit the mold of big cornerbacks that they’re targeting. This visit should put UM in great position with him moving forward.
  • Lorenz was back to break the news of 2018 St. John’s Jesuit (OH) LB Dallas Gant is expected to visit Michigan in the near future ($). He’s another top target that looks to be leaning towards OSU right now. But with a push from the staff during this visit, UM should be able to sway some of that momentum, especially if they can pitch him on following in his family’s footsteps to Ann Arbor.
  • According to his interview with The Wolverine’s Brandon Brown, 2018 Olympia (FL) QB Joe Milton really likes what he sees out of Michigan and is planning on visiting for the spring game in mid-April ($). Milton is seen as a heavy Florida lean but thanks to him being the cousin of Anquan Boldin, UM looks to have a puncher’s chance here, if they push for him.

Looking for That Dude

After signing an unreal wide receiver haul in 2017, it looks like Michigan is only going to take one (two at max) receivers in this class. And, though there isn’t any individuals that look like a safe bet, two names are starting to standout as the staff looks to be enamored with, in Mater Dei (CA) WR Amon-Ra St. Brown and Christian Brothers (MO) WR Kamryn Babb.

St. Brown spoke with 247Sports’ Steve Wiltfong about his recruitment and, once again, mentioned Michigan among the teams that is recruiting him the hardest and spoke about why Jim Harbaugh makes UM a top option ($):

I think Coach Harbaugh is one of the best coaches in college football right now,” St. Brown said. “I think he’s stern. I think he does everything right as a head coach. And then just the way they play football I think is great.”

As for Babb, Wolverine247’s Steve Lorenz has mentioned him among as the top receiver target for the staff in the past ($). But with OSU looking to be at the top of his list, at the moment, Michigan has plenty of ground to make up here.

The same looks to be true for St. Brown, as USC and Notre Dame look to have the early step-up on the competition. However, a visit to campus for either could be a bit of a game changer. The pitch to be the only receiver in this class and develop under NFL-level coaching could be a huge selling point.

Quick Hitters

Photo Credit: Thompson-Robinson/SportsRant