With fourteen scholarships already to his credit, Rock Hill, SC athlete Stephon Gilmore is slowly becoming one of the most coveted prospects in the south. His ability to line up at three different positions on the football field has made him particularly appealing, but one in particular piqued the interest of the Michigan Wolverines.
“I talked to a (Michigan) coach the other day and he said they sent an offer to my address,” Gilmore recalled. “I’ve watched Michigan on TV and stuff like that, and I thought it might be a good school to go to. They want me to play quarterback. I run the spread offense in high school.
“I actually talked to about four (Michigan) coaches the other day, and it went real good,” he continued. “They seem like they’re good coaches and they aren’t going to lie to you. I talked to Coach Rodriguez and he seemed like a real good guy too. He said other schools are recruiting me as a wide receiver, and (Michigan) wants me to play quarterback because they think I have the ability to run the offense that they ran at West Virginia.”
Gilmore shares Rodriguez’s belief that he can be a signal caller at the next level, and the opportunity to give the position a shot is one that he finds intriguing.
“Wake Forest is recruiting me as a quarterback too, but all of the other schools are recruiting me as an athlete,” said Gilmore. “At Michigan, I could run that offense. I know how to run that spread like Pat White. I saw him run it and I think I can run it similar to him. The position I play will depend on the school, but I know I’d play quarterback at Michigan.
At nearly 6-1, 175-pounds, and capable of running the forty in 4.5 seconds, Gilmore brings outstanding versatility to any position he mans on the field.
“When I have the ball in my hands I can make people miss, I can see the field, I can run over you, and if I want to I can juke you,” Gilmore said describing his game. “My strength on defense is coming up and making the tackle.”
Despite the obvious allure of the quarterback position, Gilmore emphasized that it won’t be the overriding factor in his decision-making process. As he looks for the best possible fit, there are other specific ingredients that the winner must possess.
“The first thing I’ll look at is the academics at the school… what percentage graduate and all of that,” explained Gilmore. “Second of all, I’m going to look at can I play quickly. Third I’m going to look at the coaches... do I have a good relationship with the coaches?”
“(Distance from home) is really not a factor,” he continued. “If I really like the school, I’m going there. I’d rather go to the school I really like instead of going to a school that I don’t like as much just because it’s close to home. Me my mom and my dad have talked about it and they feel the same way.”
With more schools showing interest every week, Gilmore is making a point to keep an open mind. The youngster doesn’t want to limit his options at this early point in his recruitment.
“I don’t have any favorites right now,” he said. “I have to visit some schools first and see what I like before I make my list. I really wasn’t a fan of any teams growing up. I really liked players. I liked Devin Hester and I really liked Pat White and the offense that he ran because everybody says I run like him. I think I could really run that offense (at Michigan). I’m going to try to fly up there (to Michigan) this summer. Me and my dad were just talking about it. I’m going to probably get all of my visits in during the summer and then I’ll make my decision after football season.”