Michigan Junior to Watch: Vernon Gholston
Name: Vernon Gholston
School: Detroit Cass Tech
Position: Offensive Line/Defensive Line
Weight: 250 lbs.
Forty: 4.57 sec.
Bench Press: 370 lbs.
Squat: 575 lbs.
Vernon is a sleeper recruit in that he didn't receive any all-area recognition whatsoever as a junior. Don't let that fool you, though, because he possesses a rare combination of size, strength and speed for a lineman. He will be one of the elite recruits in the state of Michigan.
His head coach, former Michigan running back Thomas Wilcher, had this to say about Vernon in early February: "Vernon was a junior starter at offensive guard and saw spot duty on defense at defensive end. He's 6-4, 245 or 250 and runs a 4.57 forty. He's big, fast and strong. He bench-presses 370 and squats 575 pounds. He also has a real fine 34-inch vertical leap. He's the second fastest player on my team. He's built like a brick house. As a junior he had a 90% blocking efficiency and had 2 sacks and 10 tackles in spot on defense. He's faster and stronger than (WMU signee) Desmond Gray. He's a Big Ten caliber kid. He has the speed to play at Michigan, Florida, to play at any level with his speed. His best in the forty is 4.57, which makes him second fastest on my team. Lloyd Carr and Eric Campbell visited last week. Lloyd asked "who is that kid" after seeing him in person. He will be at the Michigan camp this summer. Vernon has a 3.0 overall GPA. He's a top 10 in-state prospect. Michigan is his favorite and he wants to go to the Michigan camp."
Remember that name, Vernon Gholston, and remember that you saw it here first. He hasn't received any honors thus far, but he's a far superior prospect to many of the juniors who made all-state (for instance the Plumsteads, Callahans, and Smiths of the world) who are not legitimate Michigan prospects.
Michigan Junior to Watch: Allen Langford
Name: Allen Langford
School: Detroit Cass Tech
Position: Defensive Back
Weight: 190 lbs.
Forty: 4.6 sec.
Bench Press: 295 lbs.
Squat: 425 lbs.
Allen Langford was injured for much of his sophomore season, so he was a nit of a sleeper until his summer camp performance at Michigan last year. He came back to enjoy a fine junior season and is now receiving serious Big Ten interest. As Tom Beaver mentioned last fall, he visited Michigan for the Utah and Michigan State football games.
His head coach, former Michigan running back Thomas Wilcher, had this to say about him in early February: "Allen has been a starter at cornerback since his sophomore year. He will also play some fullback as a senior. He's 5'11 or 6'0, 190 and runs a 4.6 forty. He benches 295 and squats 425 pounds. He has a 33-inch vertical. As a junior he had 71 tackles and 3 interceptions. He also carries a 3.2 GPA. Allen projects as a safety in college. He's a top 10 in-state prospect. He went to the Michigan camp last year. They liked him a lot and are asking about him a lot. Coach Carr and Coach Campbell really liked what they saw of him in summer camp. At the recent high school coaches clinic in Battle Creek a lot of college coaches were asking about him, especially the Michigan coaches. He's tough, big, physical and strong. Michigan is his favorite. Michigan is the favorite for all my kids."
Langford is a youngster who is certainly on the recruiting radar screen of the Michigan coaches. I think that his summer camp performance will be critical in determining at which level – high-level Big Ten or lower level- he will play his college ball.
Michigan Junior to Watch: Eric Lyght
Name: Eric Lyght
School: Detroit Cass Tech
Position: Running Back
Weight: 185 lbs.
Forty: 4.5 sec.
Bench Press: 350 lbs.
Squat: 510 lbs.
2002 Honors: Detroit Free Press Honorable Mention All-Detroit (RB); Detroit News Honorable Mention All-Detroit (RB)
Eric Lyght will be a rare four year varsity starter for Cass Tech. As a sophomore he gained 700 yards rushing and he followed that up with 1581 yards rushing as a junior. Due to his lack of size it is unlikely that he will wind up at Michigan, but he is a Big Ten caliber back and the fact that he already has early offers from MAC schools attests to this. He is certainly a better college prospect than certain other backs who have received all-state mention, so in my view he deserves the ink.
His head coach, former Michigan running back Thomas Wilcher, had this to say about him in early February: "Eric will be a four year varsity starter. He started at fullback as a freshman and running back the past two seasons. He's 5-9, 185 and runs a 4.5 forty. He's the fastest kid on the team. He bench presses 350, squats 510 and has a 32-inch vertical. As a junior he rushed for 1581 yards on over 200 carries and scored 7 touchdowns. He's a great cutback runner, is strong, compact, runs low to the ground and never gets tackled by the first man. He doesn't have the speed of (former Cass Tech and Michigan star RB) Clarence Williams, but Clarence was the fastest kid in the state when he played for me. Eric is a top 10 in-state prospect. He will probably camp at Michigan this summer but he's too small a running back for Michigan. Michigan recruits big backs nowadays. Eric has already been offered by Bowling Green and Akron."
An opposing head coach in the PSL had this to say about him late last month: "Lyght has good quickness and speed. He has smallish size and his height may be a problem in terms of his college level."
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