FRI NIGHT: More on Eugene Germany Situation

The old saying 'Recruiting doesn't end until Signing Day' is not always true. Such is the case with <i>2004</i> recruit DE/TE <b>Eugene Germany</b> from Pomona, Calif., High School. <br><br>GoBlueWolverine Magazine spoke Thursday with Germany and Pomona coach John Brown regarding the desire of Germany to come to Michigan. <br>

As GoBlueWolverine Magazine reported on Wednesday, defensive lineman Eugene Germany, a major Michigan target from the class of 2004 who ended up signing with USC at the behest of his family, has decided to end his relationship with the Trojans and is looking to come to Michigan. There are still some issues that need to be resolved before it can happen, and GBW spoke Thursday with Germany, and Pomona coach John Brown to get further clarification on what remains to be done, and why things turned out the way they did.

Just about everyone involved with the recruitment of Germany wanted Michigan; coaches, dad, friends (teammate Keston Cheathem is now a member of the Wolverine football team), even Germany himself. However, one very powerful force trumped them all. "My mom wanted me to stay close to home and go to USC," Germany said.

Unfortunately, things didn't turn out quite as expected. Pomona assistant coach John Brown, working on the behalf of Germany, has been calling schools to see if there is still interest in his former star player. The response has been very positive, but one school gets first crack. "There were some things that were said during Eugene's recruitment that didn't turn out to be true," Brown said. "Eugene, the family, and I discussed things and it was decided it was best to look around. So I've contacted all the schools he visited last year, except Tennessee, to see if they were still interested. Eugene is really hoping to go to Michigan, but if that doesn't work then Washington State and Oregon State are interested, and Ole Miss has contacted me about him." GBW has also learned that Kansas State is interested in talking to Germany as well.

Brown said there were a few questions regarding whether Germany would need a release from his letter of intent in order to come to Michigan. "The USC athletic department said no release was needed," Brown said. "Michigan told me that the Big Ten is saying they'll need to get a release, so I'm trying to get hold of the USC people to get them to go ahead and give Eugene a release. I don't see a problem with that." Brown said that, under the rules, Germany would need to be free from his LOI at USC before he can begin to talk to the coaches directly. Therefore, no visit from the Michigan coaches is currently scheduled.

At his Signing Day announcement, Germany measured 6-foot-4, 250-pounds and was slated to play on the defensive side of the ball. He said he is now at 270-pounds but has been working out and is looking to get back down to 250. Brown said only LSU recruited Germany as a tight end, but it wasn't long before the Trojans asked Germany to move to the offense. "I didn't mind it too much," Germany said. "I'd much rather play defense, but the idea of scoring touchdowns was pretty good, it would be fun." Brown said Michigan is looking to bring Germany in on the defensive line.

Germany said he has been spending the time off working out and attending classes at Mt. San Antonio College, a junior college in Walnut, Calif., near Pomona. One of the reasons for the delay in being admitted to USC was that Germany wasn't qualified under their guidelines. "When he was being recruited, everyone, I mean everyone, said they would accept him if he met the NCAA requirements," Brown said. "After he signed with USC they said he didn't meet their minimum requirements, and that he would need to take some classes and enroll in the winter. He did, but they wanted him to take three more classes this spring. Eugene felt that they were just stringing him along. What I think happened is that they oversigned and were looking to force some kids to leave, that's just my opinion. So he decided to move on and the first person I called was Ron English. Michigan told me they would accept his academics." Germany said Wednesday that he scored a 940 on his SAT, and carried a 2.4 grade-point-average. Those marks are well within the NCAA guidelines for admission.

One other question that remains is the number of years Germany has to play. "He attended some of the USC practices at the end of last summer," Brown said. "There are a certain number of practices a player can attend before they decide if he's qualified. I'm waiting to hear whether he still has all his elibility, since he did practice with the team. He never did enroll at the school."

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