Alex Legion, his mom Annette Williams and mentor Tim Green visited Michigan last weekend and they all had a very enjoyable time. The trio spent all day in Ann Arbor taking in for the football team's thrilling 27-25 victory over the Penn State Nittany Lions, a basketball practice, and even spoke with academic advisors. Each of them went on the trip looking for different things. When all was said and done, none came away disappointed.
Alex wanted to see what the campus was really like and the type of resources they had for him as a student. He also wanted to continue to get a feel for what Coach Amaker is really like. His mom wanted to know how they would look after her child if he there. Tim Green wanted to know…well let's just say he looks for everything. He wanted to know who would mentor Alex while he is in college. He wanted to know about the educational resources that they have for student athletes. He also wanted to observe how the team is coached.
GoBlueWolverine spoke with all three parties, and each had glowing things to
say. Ms. Williams liked the fact that coach Amaker and Al seem to have a few
things in common…like being raised by a single parent. Coach Amaker impressed
her with a hand written note that talked about her son writing his own script
and making history at Michigan. "All of my questions were answered,"
Ms. Williams said. "I was very impressed with the things coach Amaker talked
about in terms of my son's future at Michigan. I like Coach Jack too. He is
down to earth and easy to talk to. I told coach Amaker he could not have chosen
a better coach."
Alex was equally impressed with the coaches and the overall atmosphere in Ann Arbor. He talked a great deal about the alumni connections at Michigan and the help that they would have for him as a student. He even got a chance to sign an autograph for a young fan who was with his dad from South Dakota. "I was surprised that they even recognized me," Legion said. "That was pretty cool talking with them".
When we spoke with Alex about colleges and recruiting during his freshmen and sophomore years, he seemed uninterested. That is no longer the case. Now when I ask him questions, it is obvious that he has put much more thought into the process. That is just what his mentor and Coach Tim Green has been clamoring for. Below is our Q&A with Legion.
So how did you like your visit?
"College life up there really impressed me. I really enjoyed listening to them talk about the different educational resources I would have as a student athlete. Coach Amaker talked about the alumni connection that would help me after graduation and that they have the largest alumni base in the country."
What were your thoughts on coach Amaker?
"Since the visit I have more of an appreciation for Michigan. Coach Amaker has a passion for coaching. The meeting that we had with him let me know how much he wanted me to come to Michigan. Coach Green always tells me about these visits but to find out for myself was a very good experience. It just sealed the deal for me to know how much he wanted me to come to college at Michigan. I thought the best part was he wanted to help revive the program and he needs somebody who will take them over the top. Coach Amaker told me he wanted a player…not just a 2-guard or position player…he wanted a star. I enjoyed hearing that!"
What about Assistant Coach Mike Jackson?
"Coach Jackson is my man! He is real cool. We talk about practice; high school basketball, and how to get my game better. Sometimes we don't even talk about basketball. We just talk."
What did you think about Coach Amaker at practice?
"Coach Amaker is really laid back and cool. He can say his words without screaming, but he is not a push-over. He makes you take him seriously and I can tell by the way the players responded to him at practice that they took him seriously. I was amazed at the stats they took in practice for free throws, jump shots, sprints they really get after it up there. The players were practicing very real hard."
It seems you are taking more of an interest in your recruiting?
"Yes I am taking a more serious role in my recruiting. That is what coach Green has wanted me to do. I trust Coach Green 100 percent with what he is helping me to do. I have not made any mistakes when I've listened to him, so when I pick a college the decision will be between him, my mom, and me. My mom trusts coach Green just like I do so it will work out just fine."
We also had a chance to speak with the man Alex looks to for guidance…his mentor and coach Tim Green. "I really enjoyed the campus and the people I spoke with," Green said. "I had a chance to speak to Ted Spencer, the Director of Undergraduate Admissions, and Shari Acho, who heads academic success program. Mr. Spencer talked about Michigan's reputation nationally and how they promote diversity. He was very straight forward with his information. Mrs. Acho talked about the resources for the student-athletes. I thought UCLA and Michigan State did a good job, but Michigan did a better job in terms of informing Alex of what they had."
As an educator, Green finds the prospects for Legion's academic success of the utmost importance. So too are those that will be charged with caring for him once he leaves home. "I am looking for someone that will mentor Alex," Green said. "As a young black male, Alex will be confronted with many difficult decisions in his life. I am not going to be there all the time to help him make those decisions, so I am helping him get to the point where he will make the right decision for himself. Alex realizes I am going to try and put him in position to succeed. I am loyal to him I am not going to tell him something that is not right for him. I teach him the pro's and con's to the game so if anything happens to me, he will be well equipped to know what is going on and be able to handle it himself. It is very important to me that he has a mentor on the staff that he can relate to at the school that he attends. I like Tommy as a coach and as a person. He is someone who comes from a winning tradition. He played and coached in a winning tradition. I like Coach Jackson as well. I had a chance to watch him coach and I like the way the kids respond to him. Coach Andy Moore was very cool to watch. I like the way he works with the post players."
Michigan has clearly made a lasting impression on Legion and his family. However, when asked if the Wolverines had gained the lead, they continued to play things close to the vest. "There is no leader at this time AND there are still other schools involved," Green said.
GoBlueWolverine will have more on Legion in the coming months.