Football Recruiting: Commitments, Needs

Here are Michigan's seven verbal commitments (plus Marques Slocum). Plus a new analysis of Michigan football recruiting needs, met and as yet unmet.

-- Marques Slocum DT 6'6 330 5.1 Milford Academy New Berlin N.Y. A 2004-05 U-M signee and U.S. Army All-American from Philadelphia West Catholic, Slocum finished just shy of the NCAA qualifying standard. He will still enroll at U-M whenever he qualifies.

-- Michigan Commitment #1: (3) Brandon Graham LB 6'1 235 4.40 Detroit Crockett Michigan.'s #12 prospect. From the same program as Penn State's´Edward Johnson and Michigan's John Thompson, Graham is at another level. As a junior Graham had 91 tackles, including 20 for losses; he rushed for a touchdown on a fake punt and can consistently make 32-yard field goals. Graham has a 3.8 grade-point average. The top prospect in Michigan and one of the naton's elite linebackers. Committed to Michigan in February.

-- U-M Commitment #2: (6) Justin Boren OL 6'3 319 5.20 Pickerington North Ohio.'s #28 prospect. Justin's father, Mike, was a starting linebacker at Michigan in the 1980's. Justin is much bigger than his dad. One of the nation's elite OL's. After OSU got an early lead for him, U-M closed the gap starting with the Feb. 20 Junior Day - and Justin committed to U-M on May 13.

-- Michigan commitment #3: (92) Quintin Patilla LB/RB/WR 6'2 1/2 210 4.65 Flint Carman-Ainsworth Michigan.'s #78 Midwest prospect. The underrated Patilla was a force at OLB at the Michigan Camp, fast and hard-hitting. He was offered a few days after the camp ended, and immediately committed.

-- Michigan commitment #4: David Cone QB 6'6 215 Statesboro Georgia. One of the two "Sleepers of the U-M Camp," the Elvis Grbac clone plays for a school that passes less than 10 times a game. But he performed excellently at camp (observers called his performance the 2nd best QB performance of the camp, after rising junior Ryan Mallett and ahead of two Elite 11 QB's) and earned a U-M scholarship offer. He committed six days later, on June 29. He'd also had early offers from Mississippi State, Louisville, Georgia Tech; and Auburn and Georgia might continue to recruit him.

-- Michigan Commitment #5: (30) Cobrani Mixon LB 6'2 220 4.60 Cincinnati Colerain Ohio.'s #84 prospect committed to U-M on July 27. He was a force in this past June's U-M Camp. He wore a knee brace in the camp since he suffered an ACL injury as a junior although he toughed it out and returned to the field late in the season to end up with 100 tackles, 12 tackles for loss and 6 sacks. He had postseason surgery. He also attended U-M's winter Junior day.

-- Michigan Commitment #6: Steve Brown S/CB 6'1 200 4.39 Columbus East Indiana.'s #92 prospect. Brown, who grew up a U-M fan, blew up the U-M Nike Camp with a 4.39 40, and was rewarded with early offers from Michigan and Notre Dame. He picked the Wolverines over the Irish on Aug. 1st. He broke his ankle in mid-Sept. and had surgery -- he'll miss the rest of his senior season but plans to make it back for the Army All American game.

-- U-M Commitment #7: DT/DE John Ferrara 6'5 260 5.0 Staten Island Monsignor Farrell New York. After watching his fall film, U-M offered on Oct. 20 -- and he accepted. The 4.0 student also had offers from PSU, MSU, Duke, Ole Miss, Rutgers and Northwestern.

Recruiting Needs: met and unmet:

Michigan has commitments from:
One quarterback: David Cone
One Interior Offensive Lineman: Justin Boren
One OL/DT: John Ferrara
One Defensive Tackle: Marques Slocum
Three Linebackers: Brandon Graham, Cobrani Mixon, Quintin Patilla
One Safety: Steve Brown

With seven commitments and around 9-11 scholarship slots still remaining, U-M's remaining needs would seem to be: an offensive tackle or two, a defensive end or two, a safety. Other than that the recruiting plan may be to take the best kids at ANY position.

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