Jeffrey Okudah had nothing to gain by showing up to one of Michigan’s recent satellite camps. The 2017 Grand Prairie (Tex.) South four-star safety is one of the most highly recruited defensive backs in the country and already holds an offer from the Wolverines.
Still, the opportunity to really get to know Jim Harbaugh and Michigan’s new coaching staff was too much to pass up.
“Just the fact (I get to be) around Coach Harbaugh and his new staff, having the chance to get familiar with the coaches,” Okudah The Michigan Insider. “It’s been a great experience so far.”
A first impression certainly doesn’t mean everything when it comes to relationship building, specifically in the recruiting process, but Okudah walked away impressed with Harbaugh’s personality.
“He’s fired up,” Okudah said. “He’s everything I thought he would be. He’s a great coach. He’s going to turn Michigan around for sure.”
Originally offered by Michigan all the way back in February, one of the first 2017 offers to be sent out by the Wolverines’ coaching staff since arriving on campus, Okudah says the joy that came with it hasn’t worn off one bit.
“I was beyond excited just to have an offer to Michigan,” he said. “I know that he had just gotten in and for him to evaluate me so early in his tenure, that was big time.”
“It caught me out of the blue because Michigan is so far up north and I’m all the way down here in, down south in Texas, so I was fired up,” added Okudah.
Already standing just shy of 6-foot-2 and 200-pounds, Okudah’s size makes for an intriguing target and potentially a multi positional player down the road in college.
For opposing coaches at the prep level, the scouting report is a nightmare.
“You’re going to see a player who’s versatile and can impact the game on all three phases of the game and just bring a leadership to the team,” he said.
“I think I’ll fit best at defensive back at the next level, but I can also play receiver,” added Okudah.
With roughly 30 scholarship offers to his name so far, Okudah plans to make some trips and cut some schools in the near future.
“I’m trying to take my visits this summer and trim down my list and get it to ten and then five, then three and then have a decision,” he said.
Asked what stands out about Michigan, Okudah seemed to be well educated on the Wolverines’ tradition.
“I like Michigan’s tradition,” he said. “I like what they’ve been able to do. I like Coach Harbaugh and how he can develop players. I like the degree you can get from there, being such a great business school.”
Okudah added he’s looking for a program that can develop him as a player as well as networking off the field in order to ensure a successful life beyond his football career. Despite being all the way down in Texas, distance won’t play a factor in this decision.
Could Ann Arbor be next?
“I’m working on that with my parents,” he said. “We’re trying to figure out a way to get me up there.
Planning to narrow his list to a top 10 prior to or early in his junior season, Okudah says his family is encouraging him to enjoy the process first and foremost.
“They’re telling me to take it slow and make the best choice for me because it’s one of the biggest choices of my lifetime,” Okudah said.