When you think about the “hotbeds” of college football, which regions of the country generally come to mind? The South? The Midwest? The West? I’ll bet you don’t think about the Northeast, though…and you’d be correct for not doing so – it’s not exactly a region known to produce a plethora of football recruits (you tend to see more basketball and hockey recruits come from there). However, there was a young man from the recruiting Class of 2018 on campus this weekend that might break that mold. From Dedham, MA, let’s meet Michael Sullivan.
“I’ve been more focused with local schools like Boston College, but I’m trying to expand my horizons because it’s a little difficult to get recruited from the Northeast,” Sullivan told Spartan Nation.
He doesn’t have any formal offers yet, but he’s been drawing interest, specifically from schools in Michigan and Massachusetts – Michigan State, Boston College, Western Michigan and UMass.
Sullivan, who was in East Lansing this weekend along with a few other recruits, says his trip made an impact.
“I loved it,” he admitted. “The facility at Michigan State, and just everything about it, is just great. It’s a great atmosphere. I think the people there are just a great quality of people. I think Coach [Mark] Staten (Offensive Line) is a really great guy – I had a little time to meet with him after the scrimmage. But overall, I loved it.”
Although he said that he was in Michigan for the first time this weekend, it will not be his last. Michael plans to attend the “Big Man Camp” at Michigan State in June, and also decided Wednesday morning that he will most likely be at the Spartans spring game, as well.
Part of what is so intriguing about Sullivan is his versatility. Although he is an offensive lineman by “trade,” he played almost every position on the offensive line during his junior season at Noble & Greenough School.
“Well, this year we were kind of in a transition year – we went 4-4. Our offensive line struggled at different times, and depending on different formations, they needed different things out of people. So I really needed to move around the offensive line to kind of get our offense going in running and passing,” Michael explained.
Sullivan says that run blocking is probably his best asset. Here at Spartan Nation, we view him as the “Pancake” guy – the player on the offensive line that delivers a block so strong that it leaves a defensive player flat on his back to open a hole for the running back to slip through. Despite preferring to stay in one position, moving around has helped prove just how valuable Sullivan is.
“Coaches play me at all the positions [on the offensive line], except for center. But I think it’s good to be like that – the more valuable you are, the better a coach likes you,” he said.
Sullivan is 6’6½” and 315 pounds. He benches 315 pounds and squats 405. Would YOU want to be on the receiving end of one of those “pancake” blocks? I don’t know about you, but I’m almost positive I’d be the guy flat on my back!
A lot of that strength comes from his love of the weight room.
“I go about twice a day – once in the morning, once at night. A lot of technique work and prep like that.”
Michael Sullivan is remarkably respectful and well-spoken. You can hear immediately that he has an outstanding head on his shoulders. Combine that with the fact that he’s versatile and willing to move around to benefit his team, and you’ve got the signs of a tremendous leader.
Perhaps more importantly for the Spartans is that Michael can envision bringing his various skills to East Lansing.
“I really could,” Sullivan admitted. “Honestly, I loved everything about Michigan. Now, Michigan State – the facility is one of the top I’ve ever seen in my whole life. Just the stadium alone [is great]. Coach [Mark] Dantonio is something else – he’s probably one of the best coaches in the nation!”