In-State Rivals Duel Over Perry

The Michigan Wolverines got of the gates early in the race for Detroit LB/DE Nick Perry, but the Michigan State Spartans have stepped up their intensity in recent months to close the gap. Have the tables been turned?

The city of Detroit has long been the haven for some hidden football gems in the state of Michigan.  Slowly but surely, however, youngsters from the Motor City are starting to garner more and more early recruiting attention.  One of the first prospects to hear from college coaches this season was Detroit Mackenzie (and soon to be Detroit Martin Luther King) LB/DE Nicholas Perry.  The 6-4, 220-pounder has gone from having a few scholarships to his credit, to having more than he ever anticipated.

"All of the Big Ten schools have offered me except for Northwestern," Perry said.  "Some of them are talking linebacker and some of them are talking defensive end.  It really wouldn't matter to me which one they wanted me to play.  I'd have to adjust to it."

Perry hopes to get a better feel for a number of the programs on his list when he visits a few of their campuses over the next couple of months.  The first stop on his tour will be Ann Arbor for Michigan's annual summer camp.

"I'll probably go for a day or two, but I'm not sure which days yet," he said.  "I still have to figure that out.  I'm trying to get to out of the state for some camps a little bit too, but I'm not sure which colleges I'm going to go to yet."

Michigan and Michigan State separated themselves early in Perry's recruiting process by getting on him early.  The Wolverines appeared to have an early advantage but in recent months the Spartans seemed to have closed the gap.

"Michigan State is recruiting me the hardest out of all of the schools," Perry said.  "They talk to me more, message me more…they're going to let me get the chance to be a starter as a freshman.  That's not going to play a big role.  I'm still going to be able to get around a play a little bit every where we go.  Michigan hasn't really contacted me (as much), but Campbell keeps asking me when I'm going to sign with them, so I know they want me.  Right now my top schools would be Michigan State, Michigan, Wisconsin, and probably Purdue."

The recruiting ebbs and flows will likely continue for at least the next few months, giving to out-state schools an opportunity to move up in the pecking order as well.  One of the key people helping Perry keep it all straight is his older brother.

"He helps me out a lot," said Perry.  "My coach helps me out too, but we aren't really talking on that level right now.  I'm moving on to another high school so I'm still kind of getting adjusted to that right now. My brother keeps an eye on the rosters and tells me how many players at my position that will be sophomores and juniors.  We also talk about how well the coaches care for you and stuff like that.  All of that will play a role in my decision.  I'm going to wait until after my season… or maybe during my season… and then make my decision."

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