Sept. 24 Best Guess List: Defensive Backs

One of U-M's top CB recruits, <b>Justin King</b> is making his official visit this Iowa game weekend, and also greyshirt CB commitment <b>Chris Richards.</b> It's an intriguing situation -- here's why.<br><br> Plus, here is the updated Sept. 23 Best Guess Recruiting Class List: Defensive Backs.

Cornerbacks
Needs: 3
Commitments: 1 (Johnny Sears)
Recruits: Justin King, Victor Harris, Bryan Evans, Derek Pegues, Kevin Thomas, Demetrice Morley

Safeties
Needs: 0 (or 1)
Commitments: 0
Recruits: Nick Harris (see ILB)

- Cornerback Justin King (Sept. 25 Iowa game offic. visit, '04 U-M Camp Visitor, 5-11, 182 lbs., 2003 PSU Nike stats: 4.29 in the 40, 3.72 sec. shuttle {best of camp}, 37.1 inch vertical jump {best of camp}, 11 bench press reps., 3.0 GPA/900 SAT) from Monroeville, Pa., Gateway. U-M and PSU (Nov. 16 official visit) still have the best shot, and he also has official visits set to Florida (Oct. 2) and USC (Oct. 16) ... if he takes a 5th visit it would be to OSU. He plans to graduate in December and enroll in college in January, so he'll take his official visits in he fall. He is TheInsiders #7 prospect.

- A greyshirt camp commitment for the 05/06 recruiting class: Cornerback Chris Richards (Sept. 25 Iowa game offic. visit, 05/06 commitment, '04 U-M camper, Nike Stats: 5-11 1/2, 170 lbs., 4.45 in the 40, 4.0 sec. shuttle, 36 inch vertical jump) from Monroe, Calif. His father, also his coach, told us earlier this week (the week of Sept. 20) that they would be coming to Michigan for the Iowa game and it would be Richards' official visit. Richards is a greyshirt commitment for the 05/06 recruiting class and will enter U-M in Jan. '06.

*** King and Richards taking their official visits together this weekend, Sept. 24-26, the Iowa game weekend. ***
Here's why it's interesting.

Anyone think it's merely a coincidence that the visits are together? Chris Richards is already a U-M commitment of course and can hang around with King. Plus, Richards was a camper this summer for the whole week and King was at camp for a day as well -- so the two have that in common and may quite possibly have met at that time. And both will enter college in January -- King in Jan. '05, Richards '06. Chris and Justin are almost exactly the same size and build, and have the same 'natural smoothness' as CB's.

Plus ... Richards' father and King's stepdad Terry Smith (both of whom, we assume, are coming along) also have a lot in common. They are both their kids' head coaches. Both played college football -- Mr. Richards was a DB at Cal (and for the Los Angeles Rams), King's stepdad was a WR at PSU. And do you think Mr. Richards will speak well of U-M DB Coach Ron English? Richards Sr. and English played DB together at Cal -- and English is actually Chris' godfather! When GBW was at the San Diego State Nike Cam this spring, we spent a fair amount of time talking to Mr. Richards, who told us all about his long and close friendship with English and said that Chris was Michigan's if English wanted him. So, once again, do you think Mr. Richards will speak well of Ron English?

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The rest of the defensive back recruits:

- Michigan Commitment #5: Cornerback Johnny Sears (USC camp stats: 6-1 1/2, 175 lbs., 4.4 in the 40 {electronic}, 34 inch vertical jump) from Fresno, Calif., Edison. Johnny is an unknown because he had to sit out his junior season after transferring. Still, the Edison DB coach, who has sent many kids to Div. 1 college programs (including Ricky Manning), highly recommends him.

- Cornerback/running back Victor Harris (Oct. 29 MSU game official visit, 6-0, 185 lbs., 4.45 in the 40, 2.8 GPA) from Highland Springs, Vir. grew up a U-M (and Miami) fan. As of early Sept. U-M and the home state schools may lead. He has a Halloween bye week, and will make an official visit for the Oct. 30 MSU game. His final six are: Maryland, Miami, Michigan (Oct. 29), USC (Oct. 16), Virginia (Dec. 4) and Virginia Tech (Dec. 11). He is TheInsiders' #25 prospect.

- Safety/linebacker Nick Harris (Oct. 29 official visit, LSU Nike stats: 6-2 1/2, 209 lbs., 35 inch vertial jump, 4.2 sec. shuttle, 12 bench press reps.) from Alexandria, Louisiana. He is making an official visit Oct. 29 for the MSU game. U-M is in his top two or three with LSU (camp, Nov. 20 official visit, leader?), A&M (camp, Sept. 17 official visit); he also has official visits scheduled to Nebraska (Nov. 26) and Oklahoma (Sept. 10). Note: don't call him a linebacker! He wants to play safety!

- Cornerback Derek Pegues (5-11, 190 lbs., 4.4 in the 40, 2.8 GPA/18 ACT) from Batesville, Miss., South Panola. Pegues made a one-day visit the day before the U-M Summer camp. As of late Sept. Sept. he lists a new top five of LSU, then Tennessee, Michigan, Ole Miss and Auburn. He is TheInsiders #79 South prospect.

- Cornerback Bryan Evans (5-11, 176 lbs., 4.3 in the 40, 2.7 GPA/790 SAT) from Jacksonville, Fla., Ed White. He lists seven schools with no favorite -- but Michigan is expected to be in the top 5 and get an official visit. The 7: Florida State and LSU, (top 2?) Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Tennessee, and Michigan. He is TheInsiders' #10 South prospect (and the top cornerback) and their #46 prospect nationally.

- Cornerback Kevin Thomas (6-0, 170 lbs., 4.5 in the 40) from Oxnard, Calif., Rio Mesa. Thomas will likely make an official visit to U-M, but his parents want him to stay close to home, giving USC, and possibly Cal, the edge. He is TheInsiders' #60 prospect.

- Possible recruit: Cornerback Demetrice Morley (6-0, 176 lbs., 4.4 in the 40) from Miami Kivlian). He is a Fla. commitment but may visit U-M if he gets an offer.

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The Overall Needs (unofficial):

POSITION -- NEEDS--COMMITMENTS-------------RECRUITS

QB-------------0 or 1----0----------------------------Bass (see WR)

RB-------------2---------2 (Grady,Simpson)

WR------------2 or 3----2 (Manninghm,Savoy)----Bass,Lymon

OL-------------3 (or 4)--2 (Schifano,McAvoy)-----Zirbel,Moosmn,Slocm,Richardsn

DT-------------2 or 3----0--------------------------Taylr,McKinny,Slocm,Moor,Green

DE/OLB/TE---1 or 2-----1 (McClaurin)--------------Dicksn,Joppru,Butlr,Powrs

ILB------------1 or 2----0------------------------------Logan,McCoy,Nicholsn,Harrs

S---------------0 (or 1)--0-----------------------------Harris
CB-------------3----------1 (Sears)------------King,Harrs,Evns,Pegus,Thoms,Morly
P---------------1----------1 (Mesko)
TOTALS-------17---------9

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