When the Michigan assistants, support staff, dietitians, field maintenance workers, graduate assistants, interns, janitors, secretaries, water hydration specialists and Jim Harbaugh all came out for the Wolverines’ California satellite camp tour, the idea seemed to be having mass quantities to assure that no talent was left unearned.
But when Michigan held a satellite camp at Los Angeles (Calif.) Augustus Hawkins on Saturday, the entire staff was focused on a small handful of players, including 2019 Hawkins linebacker De'Gabriel Floyd. The Michigan camp was a bit of a new experience for the 6-foot-2, 220-pound baby-faced assassin in shoulder pads because of the camp setup.
He wasn’t using his size to deliver the pain to a ball carrier. He wasn’t showcasing his mobility by staying with smaller receivers in 7-on-7 action. With no individual competition, Floyd had to show he could produce quick times and good effort in a number of individual drills. It was different, but Floyd still tried to make the most of the experience.
"It's just a lot of work pretty much. I worked on footwork and breaking down on tackles and things like that,” Floyd said. “I liked [the Michigan coaches] a lot. They are very lively and funny actually, so I felt comfortable around them.
But it didn’t take ~40 staff members to tell that Floyd was a standout talent. All it took was one parent to ask the baby-faced two-way stud what year he graduated. He loomed over most of the other players at the camp, but the answer that followed was “2019.”
Floyd just completed his freshman year of high school, but he’s already drawing a lot of attention from college coaches. Including a Michigan offer he picked up after Saturday’s camp, he has five offers — all from Power Five conference schools.
Along with starring in the middle of a defense, he also plays some running back on the other side. No matter what side of the ball he lines up on for Hawkins, he has to face a number of potential Division 1 players on the other side. As a linebacker, that means trying to slow down an offense that features the nation’s top receiver in the 2017 class…and the nation’s top receiver in the 2018 class while having four-star slot machine Eric Fuller.
“It's great. Most of our linebackers are pretty athletic, so when we go against slots like Marcus [Johnson] and Eric Fuller, it's pretty competitive,” Floyd said. “I’m just trying to make colleges know that I'm an athletic player and I can play everywhere on the field.”
There is a long time until the 2019 National Signing Day, but Floyd said the recruiting process has been going well. He’s “heard a lot” from one of the schools he grew up watching — USC, which happens to be a street right down the street.
“It's a home school, right down the street. I live right across the street from Hawkins. Sometimes I walk down there to play basketball with my friends.”
Floyd also recently attended USC’s Rising Stars Camp and sees some potential advantages to playing close to home.
“It would make me feel pretty good. I could stay close to my mom and help her out at the house and things like that. And I could be a service to my community as well.”