Kirkland Recruited for U-M at The Opening

U-M 2015 linebacker commit, Darrin Kirkland, discusses The Opening, who he is recruiting to Michigan and more.

BEAVERTON, Ore. -- Darrin Kirkland had a strong three day showing at Nike’s The Opening that left little doubt that he is among the nation’s best.

On Tuesday, the future Wolverine was grouped with some of the best linebackers in the country as they went through drills and one-on-one competition. It was opportunity for Kirkland to showcase his rare combination of speed and athleticism among the talented group of linebackers.

“Kirkland stood out early in footwork drills and then showed his change of direction and straight ahead speed in one-on-one drills,” said Scout national recruiting analyst Brian Dohn, on Kirkland’s Tuesday performance. “He moved fast but remained patient. He was able to beat the running back to the point of attack on several drills and used his length well.”

Kirkland, who has been committed to Michigan since May, said he enjoyed the opportunity to go against the “best of the best.”

“[My] overall performance was pretty good,” said Kirkland, who stands at 6-foot-2, 220-pounds.“There some stuff I need to work on to get better. Going up against the best of the best, there is no room for error. But it was a good day for me. And it was a good day overall for the whole group.”

During the competition Kirkland had an opportunity to compete with Michigan 2015 linebacker target, Osa Masina, out of Salt Lake City (Utah) Brighton High.

“I was talking to Masina a lot,” Kirkland said. “He’s a real cool guy from Utah. So he is definitely somebody I am going to work on the rest of the week.

“I think he was [feeling Michigan],” Kirkland said of Masina. “I think he wants to get back out, he just doesn’t know when. He might take an official but he doesn’t know yet. So that was one of things. he definitely got a good vibe when he brought up Michigan that I was a Michigan commit, kind of got a smile on his face.”

Kirkland also had the opportunity to work against fellow U-M running back targets Jacques Patrick, Mike Weber and Damien Harris.

“One, Jacques is a freak, that’s a big boy,” Kirkland said. “He’s fast and just does it all. Definitely didn’t get to talk to him that much, but it was good experience being able to compete with him. But I have talking to Mike [Weber] all week, and Damien [Harris] as well. They are both real good guys, they really like Michigan. They both just want to get that good vibe about it. Really, Mike is my boy, we’ve been communicating all summer because we have been to three different camps together. So really we are just communicating and hopefully it all ends well.”

Kirkland continued to talk about Weber.

“I think his head is really good towards Michigan,” Kirkland said. “I feel like it is positive. But he has a lot to sort through. Hopefully it ends well with him in Blue.”

At the end of the month, Michigan holds its annual recruiting party – Barbecue at the Big House – and Kirkland says it will be an opportunity for other recruits to get the same feeling he had when he chose the Wolverines.

“Once all the recruits get up there July 27, hopefully they all have the feeling that I had,” Kirkland said. “The feel of that family atmosphere. You know, we can do this together. We can take over the Big Ten. So hopefully they all get that feeling like I did and it will all be successful.”

Please watch the full vide interview below.

The Michigan Insider Top Stories