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No. 25, last-minute style February 18, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in recruiting, Wayne State.
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Now we know how Wayne State landed Battle Creek Central cornerback Myles McNichols at the 11th hour:

Feb. 16, Battle Creek Enquirer: “Grand Valley offered and you can’t beat their success with the national championships, but the fact was, besides football, there wasn’t anything else there for me in Allendale,” McNichols said. “I basically feel more comfortable at Wayne State.”

Getting a 6-foot-1 corner with good speed and Division I interest (Bowling Green) is a positive at any point in the recruiting process. For McNichols to pick Wayne State this late is an impressive sign of confidence in Paul Winters and WSU’s direction and bolsters an already strong class.

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Delany fires back February 17, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in Big Ten, bonehead, Jim Delany.
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Big Ten commisioner Jim Delany has overreacted to criticism in the past but this one is warranted, especially after reading this Chicago Sun Times writer by raking the Big Ten over the coals – with support from Tom Lemming, who makes money doing this type of thing – becasue the league had a “down” bowl season and subsequent recruiting year:

Delany penned this response, titled “To fans of the Big Ten and college football:

“I wish we had six teams among the top 10 recruiting classes every year, but winning our way requires some discipline and restraint with the recruitment process…Fortunately, we have been able to balance our athletic and academic mission so that we can compete successfully and keep faith with our academic standards.”

Case in point (courtsey of some good research over at mgoblog): Georgia versus Michigan. According to Rivals, Georgia plummets from 2nd to 7th when you factor out number of recruits [29, 25, 21, 19, 28, 23; ave: 24] as compared to, say Michigan [22, 17, 22, 23, 19, 20; ave: 20.5]. What’s up with that? How can Georgia have 22 more scholarships used over the last six years?).

Just my opinion, but if Myles Brand dropped dead right now and Delany took his job over, the NCAA would be much better off.

Bly wants out February 15, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in exodus, Lions, sucking.
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Dre Bly can’t play man-to-man in Rod Marinelli’s Cover-2 defense and wants a trade.

Feb. 14, Detroit Free Press: “I have a tremendous amount of respect for Matt and Rod allowing me the opportunity to find a home for Dre’ Bly that is more conducive to his Pro Bowl skill set,” Bly’s agent, Kennard McGuire, said Tuesday.

Funny, his Pro Bowl apperances (2004, 2005) were based on his big-play ability. For as many picks or fumbles, Bly was torched equally as much. He’s a No. 2 corner on any contender. He’s not happy playing zone, even though he notched a career-high interception total (six) while missing time because of his wrist.

Bedford back at Michigan February 15, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in coaching, Michigan.
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Vance Bedford will help shape Michigan’s new-look defensive backfield, as the former U-M assistant has been hired to coach Michigan’s defensive backs under Ron English.
Bedford coached Michigan’s DB’s from 1995-98 and coached one of the best secondaries in school history (and Heisman winner Charles Woodson) in 1997 before leaving for the Chicago Bears. He spent last season at Oklahoma State.

Feb. 15, Tulsa World: “I’m excited about the challenge,” Bedford said. “Michigan has a talented group of kids in the secondary, and I’m excited to work with them.”

OT: Schottenheimer canned February 13, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in bonehead, coaching circus, off-topic.
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GM-coach rift aside, Marty Shottenheimer should have been fired earlier after one of the worst coaching moves of the year that cost the Chargers a home playoff game they should have won against New England.
You proabaly remember the sequence: San Diego was leading New England with inside 4:00 left, the clock rolling, San Diego throws and gets into 2nd-and-4. Shottenheimer then takes the ball out of L.T.’s hands, who was having another L.T.-esque game to that point, and has Philip Rivers throw twice (only god knows why). The second pass was almost picked, neither had a remote chance to be completed, and the Chargers eventually punted and let Tom Brady do his thing.
Why, why, why would you not run the ball 10 times with L.T. in that situation and cement the win? He had about 170 yards and two touchdowns. He has two carries to get four yards, and San Diego waltzes to Indianapolis. Why would you put the game in the hands of Philip Rivers?
Shottenheimer wouldn’t be coaching my team (or Jerry Miller’s) after that debacle. I don’t care about 14-2. You don’t blow you team playoff games by taking the ball away from the most dominant player of our era. L.T. was livid after the game, and I bet most of that was because of Shottenheimer, not at the Pats celebrating. At least two of us agree on this.

Update: Proabaly no suprise Shottenheimer is 5-13 in the playoffs, and a big 0-for-his-last-5.

Trend-setting February 13, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in Michigan, recruiting, Ryan Mallett.
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Texarkana Texas High also had a bevy of players sign letters of intent – six, three D-I – but Ryan Mallett wasn’t at the presser with his teammates after enrolling a semester early – a practice that is becoming very commonplace among top recruits these days.

Feb. 8, Texarkana Gazette: “It was a little odd not having Ryan here, but it’s becoming a trend for kids to enroll in college early,” said Barry Norton, athletic director/head football coach. “I think it will be good for him athletically. It’s probably good for him to get up there and get in an extra spring practice.”

Lloyd Carr has indicated that the plan is to not redshirt Mallett and have him spend as much time around Chad Henne as possible.

Early birds strong in numbers February 13, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in Michigan, recruiting.
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Ryan Mallett was one of a record four Wolverines to enroll early, joining saftey Artis Chambers, fullback Vince Helmuth and inside linebacker Austin Painter (U-M’s first JUCO since Russell Shaw).
Chambers, after committing over a year ago and being at Michigan for a month, was confused about his signing day procedure.

Feb. 7, Fort Wayne Journal Gazette: “I don’t know how that works,” he said last Monday from his dorm room. “I will call one of the coaches and ask. I think I will end up just walking over to the (football) office.”

Not a bad haul February 12, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in Cincinnati Colerain, recruiting, Wayne State.
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Paul Winters noted that Wayne State was able to recruit successfuly from a number of powerhouse high school football programs, including Cincinnati Colerain.

Judging from the Cardinals’ signings this year, that powerhouse status becomes evident. In addition to Jordan Miller, Colerain sports a long list of impressive football signings this year.

Eugene Clifford, a Parade All-American , signed with Ohio State as a saftey. Running back Gary Pride is headed to Akron. Jarad Foglesong (Georgetown) and Brandon Lainhart (Cornell) signed NLI’s as well.

Here’s more Miller: All-Enquirer Defense

Impressive WRs, too February 12, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in recruiting, Wayne State.
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Adding to an already impressive cast of wide recievers that were redshirted last year, Wayne State signed four more in the class of ’07.

We’ve talked a bit about Port Huron’s Troy Burrell. He joins 6-1 David Mosley (Oak Park), 6-2 Don Brown (Southfield), and 6-3 Dante Davis (Chippewa Valley).

Here are some complete player profiles with videos ($): Don Brown and David Mosley. Here’s a profile from Chippewa Valley’s team site of Dante Davis.

Wayne State goes to work February 12, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in recruiting, Wayne State.
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With all three tight ends – John Rehberg, Kenny Schmidt and Dale Knuth – set for graduation, Wayne State needed a big TE haul in its class of 2007.

The Warriors picked up a pair of good ones in Greg Oberstaedt (6-4, 235) and Cory Zauner (6-4, 240).

Oberstaedt was named one of ESPN’s 19 best MI tight ends and drew interest from Purdue, Central Michigan and several other D-IIs. The Whitmore Lake native was a team captain and earned most valuable lineman honors, along with honorable mention All-Tri-County (TE) and All-Area (DL) honors.

This year’s Greg Paulus … sort of February 11, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in Michigan, recruiting.
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Remember when Greg Paulus turned down a USC football offer to play Duke basketball? Aliquippa (Pa.) freak athlete Jonathan Baldwin might be facing a similar decision during his recruitment.

The 6-foot-6 Baldwin, a cousin of Ty Law, is a standout gridiron and hoop star for Aliquippa H.S. One of the best two-sport athletes in the state, Baldwin was named to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette “Fabulous 22” team and averages 22 points on the hardwood.

Feb. 1, Pittsburgh Post Gazette: Although many already have him pegged as a future football player, he was emphatic in saying he has not made a decision yet on what sport to play. “More than likely I’ll only play one sport, but I haven’t decided.”

Baldwin already holds football offers from Michigan, Pitt and Notre Dame and a basketball offer from Marquette. For now, the Ty Law connection has served him well; he lists Michigan as his football leader.

Dantonio grades his class C+ February 10, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in Michigan State, recruiting.
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Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio is his own toughest critic when grading his first incoming freshman class in East Lansing:

“I would grade our class ‑‑ just because I wish we would have come out with a couple different positions, wish we would have gotten maybe another quarterback because we only have three quarterbacks on scholarship, I wish we would have gotten another maybe skill guy or two on defense, so I would grade it probably a C+ from our standpoint.”

Not to put too much stock into recruiting rankings – or to discount how hard it is to step in and piece together a class – but for all the promise and optimism surrounding this class just three weeks ago, to come out with just two Rivals and one Scout 4-star prospects has to be disappointing.

A white lie February 10, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in Michigan, Ryan Mallett.
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Lloyd Carr told Ryan Mallett during his recruitment that the temperature in Ann Arbor wouldn’t drop below 40 degrees. Yeah, right.

Feb. 9, Detroit Free Press: “It’s a little chilly for me,” Mallett said Friday in a teleconference with reporters.

Nice legacy February 9, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in recruiting, Wayne State.
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Tyler Amos, a 5-8 Wayne State signee from Middletown, Ohio, is the cousin of Ohio State cornerback Andre Amos.

Tyler Amos camped at Ohio State, Bowling Green and Akron last summer and had interest from MAC schools and, reportedly, had a Cincinnati offer. He also reported being timed at 4.32 in the 40.

Rivals.com lists Amos as a saftey but he committed to WSU as a cornerback.

Can’t wait for Futures Day February 9, 2007

Posted by City Hoops in recruiting, video, Wayne State.
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Here are some short video clips of 5-11 Rockford DB Jeremy Jones, a Wayne State signee.

Jones makes the pick
Jones sticks fullback
Jones seals the game with an INT

Thanks to RockfordFootball.com. By far, one of the best high school team sites around.