In the biggest recruiting weekend of the season, the Wolverines rolled out the red carpet for their star-studded lineup and after defeating the No. 8 ranked Wisconsin Badgers impressed many including Indianapolis (Ind.) Cathedral 2018 offensive guard Emil Ekiyor Jr.. It didn’t long for the mammoth Hoosier State lineman to realize he had found his home and become part of the Maize and Blue family.
“It was a great visit all together,” Eyikor told The Michigan Insider. “I mean the moment I stepped on campus, I had a great vibe there and it just felt like home. The whole coaching staff was familiar with me and they were my first offer, so that meant something special that they believed in. They were the first people to believe in me and that all played a role into it. You can’t go wrong with Michigan with the great education, great football and the whole environment just fits me.
I called (Offensive Coordinator/Offensive Line) Coach (Tim) Drevno and he put me on the phone with (Head) Coach (Jim) Harbaugh. The whole coaching staff was in the room and when he told them, they all erupted and started yelling and were all really excited.”
That comfort Ekiyor made came over time as he began building those early relationships with the Wolverine coaching staff, especially offensive coordinator/offensive line coach Tim Drevno.
“I think we have a pretty strong relationship,” said Ekiyor. “We talk frequently, but me and him have a pretty solid relationship.”
Scout national analyst Allen Trieu believes this big body can help the Wolverines continue to emphasize a physical style of play in years to come.
"I think it was great for Michigan to get a kid like this early in his recruitment. They offered very early and that helped. I knew he liked Michigan and Tennessee best but this visit clearly put the Wolverines over the top. He is a big, strong kid who will be able to play the physical style Jim Harbaugh wants to, especially in the run game. I see him as a guard or center. His dad played in the NFL and he comes from a great high school program, so I think he's a really good pickup."
While many signs pointed him in the direction to choose the Wolverines, the offensive system was also a big selling point and one he feels he could excel in.
“I think I fit in with what Michigan does offensively,” said Ekiyor. “I’m pretty physical and athletic. I just want to grind and get after people.”
It was also his first opportunity to watch in the Big House and the experience definitely didn’t disappoint.
“The environment of the Big House can’t be matched anywhere else,” said Ekiyor. “I mean 111,000 people is pretty ridiculous, so it was amazing and I loved everything about it.
Eyikor didn’t make the trip up to Ann Arbor alone as his fellow teammate and Notre Dame commit, 2018 running back Markese Stepp accompanied him. Have they possibly talked about playing together
“Yeah, we definitely have talked about it. I’m trying to bring him on board, so hopefully that works out.”