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Michigan’s top recruiter of 2019
The transfer of quarterback Shea Patterson brings a third IMG Academy alum to Michigan’s roster for 2018.
IMG linebacker Charles Thomas has already committed to Michigan for the 2019 class, and he’s hoping to bring some of his teammates with him to Ann Arbor. Thomas tweeted a graphic showing him with teammates Mikel Jones, Dontae Lucas and Charles Turner in Michigan uniforms and helmets with the theme “Flooding the Big House with talent.”
— Charles Thomas (@CtdabeastThomas) February 9, 2018
Thomas, a 3-star prospect, according to the 247Sports composite, played his junior season at the Bradenton, Fla., sports academy that has become one of the country’s top programs in just five years of existence. The Ascenders have won 47 of 50 games in their five seasons, including 38 straight. They finished 2017 9-0 and ranked No. 2 in the nation behind Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei by both MaxPreps and USA Today.
RELATED: 2019 Michigan recruiting big board
Sophomore center Cesar Ruiz and redshirt freshman linebacker Jordan Anthony are also graduates of IMG.
Michigan has already made offers to Lucas, a 4-star guard, and Turner, a 3-star tackle. It hasn’t extended an offer to Jones, who is a 4-star outside linebacker who plays next to Thomas in the middle. The Wolverines have offers out to seven IMG players in the class of 2019.
Committed but options open
Even though players make commitments early on in the recruiting process, they are still going to get approached and recruited by other teams. Thomas tweeted recently that he had received an offer from Oregon. Defensive end Stephen Herron Jr. is among four players who have announced commitments to Michigan but he recently told Rivals.com that he is still open to listening to other schools.
Herron said Stanford, Florida, Clemson and Ohio State are schools that communicate with him regularly besides Michigan. Stanford, he said, visited him four times in January.
“At the end of the day, I definitely want to keep my options open, but I am verbally committed and it’s pretty strong,” Herron told Rivals. “I might take a few (official visits), but I won’t go all over the country.”
It’s tough for fans to hear players talk about other schools after they have committed, but schools look at other players in the same position during the process. The fear is always that the player will change his mind, as happened to Michigan when it lost out on commitments by Emil Ekiyor (Alabama) and Otis Reese (Georgia) in the 2018 class. By the same token, the Wolverines gained players in Julius Welschof, Ben VanSumeren and Vincent Gray when they changed their minds about other schools.
My recruitment is my recruitment; don’t speak on my future, and don’t speak of me poorly as a young man. #GoBlue
— Stephen Jr. (@stephenherron_) February 8, 2018
Sadly, not all fans understand the process and all that goes into it for both the player and the school.
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