Weekend Visitors: Baker - "The Visit Went Great"
"It was a great visit and we were able to see Michigan is a much clearer light. This is a very good thing. It is amazing how far we have come (in learning about Michigan and other schools) in such a short time period."
"We kind've thought it'd be nip and tuck. But -- thats what the Big House does. On a neutral ground things could've been different. But I thought I could see on Joe Tiller's face coming on the field that he didn't look confident."
Ryan at the game:
"Ryan had opportunity to watch game from a more technical point of view, to watch how Michigan's defense does things against a team like Purdue. At the Notre Dame game (they were there for an unofficial visit) it was more just taking in the atmosphere of the stadium and the game. So that was very informative for him this time."
Ryan's overall impression:
"He told me he had a lot of fun, and that he learned an awful lot -- about Michigan 'the school' as well as Michigan's football program."
"I can't actually tell you who Ryan's official host was -- he may have started with one host, but he was with lots and lots of players ... all the players just kind've merged into one group really. He had more interactions with the players than someone gets on just an unofficial visit, and Ryan enjoyed that a lot. We all got to visit with Jeremy Van Alstyne Sunday morning in the training room -- Ryan and Jeremy have played against each other. We visited with Jeremy while he was getting taped up."
"As far as the Michigan staff goes, he got to meet with a lot of people, a lot more than on an unofficial visit. Three people who impressed him were Coach Gittleseon (the strength and comdition coach), and the medical trainer, and the head of academic support."
"His meetings with Coach Sheridan (recruiting coordinator and D-line coach) were excellent. They went over the depth chart, and we got to ask him the 'classic questions' about whether he was looking to stay or leave Michigan, and so on."
"Our conversations with Carr were straight forward and pointed. We got our questions answered about 'life after signing', and we got very acceptable answers ... the 'what happens if' questions. And Coach Carr took a little different approach with this being Ryan's official visit -- he made it very clear to us that he's ready to go as far as wanting Ryan on the team; and he was also very clear regarding 'this is what it will be like here and you have to decide if this appeals to you or not', that kind of thing."
"Saturday night we had dinner with the coaches at the Chop House. I kidded them about that ... what is the Chop House? If you were to have a blindfold put on you and get taken down to the basement where we go ... well there's a concrete floor, there's card table chairs. It's the basement of a sports bar, that's what you'd think ... until the food shows up. Then WOW. It's actually a great atmosphere down there, like a traditional old sports club where they'd old roll out the leather chairs and stoogies, that kind of thing. It's a throw back. It was very impressive."
"We've made 3-4 trips to Michigan now. And on the way home, Ryan and his brother said to me, 'See, that's not such a bad trip' ... it's a four hour drive, so we could certainly get there."
Ryan's decision timeline:
"I don't think Ryan's decision will be late. Our plan has been to make the decision by Dec. 1st. We thought we'd have to modify the plan at one point, but we've managed to fit it in. Ryan has made the three official visits so far (to Purdue, Oklahoma, and Michigan), and this Saturday we go to Boston College. Then it's 'chill time' between then and Nov. 29th. Ryan does NOT want to be visiting during the playoffs and they start next week, with the State Championship game on the 29th. Bishop Chatard is the team to beat (being two-time defending champs)."
Where Michigan stands:
"Michigan will definitely 'be there' as a finalist on decision day."
One more thing: "Ryan and I will be in San Antonio for the US Army All Star Game practices on December 28th, and the rest of the family will get there shortly after. So we'll see you then!"