Despite a chilly official visit last October Michigan is one of the last schools standing on Mecole Hardman's list.

One of the top uncommitted prospects playing in Saturday’s U.S. Army Game is Elberton (Ga.) five-star Mecole Hardman. Despite a chilly official visit last October Michigan is one of the last schools standing on his list.

--Story by Eugene Hankerson

San Antonio, Tex. -- Most recruiting observers believe Michigan is a longshot to land Mecole Hardman Jr, but the Elberton (Ga.) standout insists the Wolverines remain in the thick of his recruitment.

“Michigan is great,” said Hardman.  “Coach Harbaugh and Coach Partridge and the guys make up a great coaching staff.  They’re doing great things with the program, especially for their first year.  They offer a great education and football program.”

Hardman, who took an official visit to Michigan in mid-October, said talk of the cold temperatures in Ann Arbor bothering him was exaggerated.

“I mean I wrapped up a little bit, it wasn’t too bad,” he said.  “I wasn’t like, ‘dang, it’s too cold.’  It’s going to be cold stretches everywhere.  It even gets cold in Georgia too.  It’s just something you get used to after you’ve been there for a year.  It’s not like I won’t go there just because it’s cold.  Weather is nothing, it is what it is.  When you go the NFL you gotta play in the cold.  Man, I had a ball when I went up there (Michigan).”

The favorable impression of the Wolverines was enhanced by their dominant performance versus Florida in the Citrus Bowl.

“They played great against a high powered SEC school and made a big impact,” said Hardman.  “It shows that the program is coming up. They are very young, and they’ve got great players coming in for next year”.

Michigan hopes Hardman is one of those prospects.  After watching the Maize & Blue in action this year he has a good feel for how he’d be utilized.

“I think they could do great things with me just like they do with Jabrill Peppers, and think I could be dynamic just like that,” he said.  “That’s one thing I really like about Michigan.”

At the moment Alabama sits atop a leaderboard that also consists of Georgia, Tennessee, Florida, Clemson, and Michigan. The school fortunate enough to sign five-star prospect will be landing an elite talent that can impact the game in many ways.

“I’d like to start off as athlete, then figure out where I play best.  Hopefully I can play both ways because that’s what I want to do.  Most schools are looking into that.”

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