By Jayant Panuganti |
On Wednesday, February 3rd The University of Michigan held a special event called “Signing of The Stars” for what is nationally known as signing day in Hill auditorium at Ann Arbor. On this day in the college sport of Football, High School Football athletes across the nation give their consent as to what school that offered them a scholarship they would like to play for . On this day, the 9 win and 3 losses, 12th ranked Wolverines and successful Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl champions recruited 28 athletes from across the U.S. to play in blue and maize under the leadership of successful first year coach Jim Harbaugh. Ranging positions from the Offensive Line to offering recruitment at athletes homes, Harbaugh has been successful in recruiting up to Signing day.
Harbaugh would continue to be successful throughout signing day as he recruited his 28 football players. These players would range and vary in skill level with four star Wide Receivers such as 6 foot, 182 pound Eddie McDoom. McDoom being well known for his use of pace while breaking through tackles in his high school career timed at a 4.25 s 20 yard shuttle time, only rivaled by Nick Deluca at 3.9 s at the High School combine. This is just one of the many exemplary dimensions to the Wolverine recruitment this year.
Having had a nationally ranked defense last year the Wolverines plan on taking pride in this aspect of their game once again, regardless of losing defensive coordinator D.J. Durkin to a head coaching position at the University of Maryland. The Wolverines did however replace him with Don Brown from Boston College as new defensive coordinator who will not change the winning mentality as instead is creating new-found hype all around him to orchestrate potentially one of the best college defenses ever known. Don Brown having led Boston College to the title of best college defense in the nation, is sure to bring heavy defensive sets to Michigan but that was not all however. On signing day Michigan signed a total of 9 defensive players among the 28 who were recruited. One of which who is ESPN 100’s #1 high school recruit in the U.S. 6 foot 5, 293 pounds DE Rashan Gary. Along with this number one recruit in the nation are others such as LB Devin Gil, and DB Lavert Hill.
All of the recruits having been at the lowest 3 star recruits range in position with names such as: David Long, Nick Eubanks, Dylan Crawford, Carlo Kemp, Devin Bush, and more. Along with these names are more such as ESPN’s #1 ranked punter in the nation Quinn Nordin who was recruited by JIm Harbaugh personally at Nordin’s doorstep at his house who is now committed to MIchigan along with these other players. Watching these commitments being made live at the event, “SIgning of The Stars” Student Sections erupted in cheer with every commitment, and Local News Media’s covered each and every snippet ranging from Channel 7 live to the Detroit Free Press. However the more interesting part of the demographic were the MIchigan Alumni present at the event.
Starting off was Head Coach Jim Harbaugh obviously as not only is he a coach but also played in Blue and Maize as a Quarterback being coached by the legendary Head Coach Bo Schembechler in his day. However he was not alone in his presence as a Michigan Alumni as others including: New England Patriots’ Quarterback Tom Brady, former Detroit Tigers Manager Jim Leyland, Former Heisman winner and NFL great Desmond Howard, Future MLB hall of famer, retired MLB all – star, and New York Yankee living legend Derek Jeter, Champion race car driver Brad Keselowski, and others were all present at the event. All celebrities who attended the University of MIchigan came not only to attend the successful recruitment of players for Michigan Football, but to also create awareness.
All of the celebrity athletes who were present at the event, also had a purpose to create awareness for and donate towards a charitable organization known as, “The ChadTough Foundation”. This foundation was made to fund research and raise awareness for Pediatric Brain Tumors with an emphasis on Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG). In which the idea of it being possibly rare should not be a reason for the research of its cure to be halted. This foundation being made in remembrance of a young wolverine named Chad who was unsuccessful in his initial treatments at The University of Michigan’s, “Mott Children’s hospital”. Where now money was being funded for him and others across the world dealing with symptoms of his kind. This foundation gained over 3 million dollars on signing day. This makes the overall day not only a huge win for the MIchigan Football Team, but also a win for the ChadTough foundation and their cause to create awareness and generate volunteer support.