Trieu: A closer look at Michigan’s 2019 football recruiting class

By Allen Trieu
Special to The Detroit News
Daxton Hill

Allen Trieu of 247Sports, who covers recruiting for The Detroit News, breaks down the players in Michigan’s 2019 football recruiting class (stars are according to the 247Sports composite).

Zach Charbonnet, RB, Oaks Christian (Calif.) Westlake Village, 6-2, 215 pounds, four stars

The easy pick for impact freshman, both because of his talent and because the Wolverines have a big need at his position. Charbonnet put together an outstanding high school career and steadily rose in the recruiting rankings. His size (6-2, 215 pounds), balance, and receiving skills make him a special prospect who can be a true lead back in college. He has enrolled early.

Mazi Smith, DT, Grand Rapids East Kentwood, 6-3, 300 pounds, four stars

Another highly-ranked recruit at a position where there is a need. Smith is powerful and has explosiveness as well. He is now over 300 pounds, he is already on campus and will be physically ready to compete at this level. He chose the Wolverines over Notre Dame, Ohio State, Penn State and several more offers.

Daxton Hill S, Tulsa (Okla.) Booker T. Washington, 6-0, 186 pounds, five stars

The crown-jewel of this class, Hill is ranked as the No. 1 safety in the country by the 247Sports Composite. He is a blend of cover skills, intelligence, and tackling ability that makes him a complete prospect. He was clocked at 4.46 in the 40-yard dash at a Nike Opening Regional, one of the most reliable testing sites in high school football. While he was not an early enrollee, he is still expected to provide immediate competition in the back-end. He briefly flipped to Alabama, but Michigan did a good job of continuing to recruit him and flipped him back.

Chris Hinton

Chris Hinton, DE, Norcross (Ga.) Greater Atlanta Christian School, 6-4, 280 pounds, four stars

The son of former NFL great Chris Hinton, he has been a standout on varsity since his freshman season. He ended his high school career with an impressive week at the All-American Bowl in San Antonio, Texas. At 6-foot-4, 280-pounds, he has the size to be an anchor end or a three-technique and migh line up at more than one spot. He is technically sound and plays with good pad level and agility.

Trente Jones, OT, Loganville (Ga.) Grayson, 6-6, 282 pounds, four stars

Michigan received a commitment from him last February, and despite overtures and new offers following that verbal, he remained true to that word. At the Under Armour All-America Game, he showed strength, but also the feet to handle top-level defensive linemen. He figures to be a right tackle in our estimation.

Jalen Perry, CB, Dacula (Ga.), 6-1, 188 pounds, four stars

A bigger, longer cornerback who turned in a good career on offense, as well, Perry is an early enrollee who is looking to make a push for playing time. He is not just big, but he also has good ball skills. He was once committed to Georgia and held offers from 21 schools.

Cade McNamara

Cade McNamara, QB, Reno (Nev.) Damonte Ranch, 6-1, 206 pounds, four stars

McNamara is not a physically imposing quarterback (6-1, 206 pound) but he has a lot of other standout qualities. He throws with accuracy and touch, and did a great job of taking care of the football in high school. He throws the ball well on the move and his high school coaches, as well as analysts who have scouted him, rave about his intangibles. He enrolled early and will go through spring practice.

David Ojabo, DE, Blairstown (N.J.) Blair Academy, 6-4, 240 pounds, four stars

One of the more interesting recruits in the class because he grew up overseas (Nigeria and Scotland) and has only played football for two seasons, but has such tremendous athletic ability in a nearly 6-foot-5, 233-pound frame that many top college football programs came after him. He ran a 10.9 in the 100-meter dash at that size and gets off the ball with great quickness. He is an early enrollee with as much upside as anyone in the class.

Nolan Rumler

Nolan Rumler, G, Akron (Ohio) Archbishop Hoban, 6-4, 290 pounds, four stars

Rumler was an immediate starter as a freshman for Hoban and was outstanding for four seasons. He is a tough, strong player who blocks to the whistle and finishes plays. He earned his Under Armour All-America status with an MVP performance at their February regional camp, then had a good week down in Orlando for the All-America Game. He is one of the best pure football players in this class and figures to be an extremely reliable presence for Michigan the next several years either at guard or center.

Cornelius Johnson, WR, Greenwich (Conn.) Brunswick School, 6-2, 195 pounds, four stars

Johnson was a good recruiting win for the Wolverines as Penn State came on late and he had many other major offers. In a class full of good skill players, he gives Michigan something they did not have in the class prior to his commitment, a bigger outside receiver. He also had a good week at the All-American Bowl in San Antonio. He is polished and strong, and while this may not be a position of immediate need, he has some college-ready traits if they need him to be.

Trevor Keegan, OT, Crystal Lake (Ill.) South, 6-6, 310 pounds, four stars

At several points, Georgia, Clemson and Ohio State issued strong challenges for Keegan. Michigan, in particular offensive line coach Ed Warinner, kept recruiting him and got him in the class. Keegan was a four-year varsity player at South. At 6-foot-6, 310 pounds, he is one of the classic tackle bodies in the class. He was dominant as a high school run blocker and has the size and athletic qualities desired for pass protection, as well.

Erick All, TE, Fairfield (Ohio), 6-4, 225 pounds, four stars

All had 25 scholarship offers, but Michigan did a good recruiting job with him. He is not as big in stature as some of the recent Wolverine tight ends, but he has a versatile skill set. He is comfortable splitting out and has excellent hands and ability to come down with fades and 50-50 balls. And despite not being quite as big (6-4, 225 pounds) as other tight end prospects, he was an extremely willing, physical and effective blocker in high school. All enrolled mid-year at Michigan.

Anthony Solomon, LB, Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) St Thomas Aquinas, 6-0, 190 pounds, four stars

Michigan flipped him from Miami (Fla.) in the winter, but the Wolverines had been recruiting him for several years and he held the Wolverines in high regard. A currently undersized (6-0, 190 pounds) but fast linebacker with good cover skills, he is also a player who strikes with explosion as a tackler.

Giles Jackson

Giles Jackson, WR, Oakley (Calif.) Freedom, 5-8, 175 pounds, four stars

Jackson rose quickly in recruiting last offseason with several strong camp performances and outstanding testing results. He is outstanding in space and gives Michigan a kid who can make defenders miss and score from different places on the field. He could be a return man, as well. Given what new offensive coordinator Josh Gattis has said about "speed in space," Jackson fits the bill.

Mike Morris, DE, Delray Beach (Fla.) American Heritage, 6-5, 255 pounds, three stars

Morris was committed to Florida State, but Michigan got him to campus and he changed his verbal to the Wolverines. He has a big frame at 6-foot-5, 255 pounds, but can move that frame fluidly. He has a good swim move and with his growth potential, he could project to several spots along the defensive front. He has drawn comparisons to former Wolverine and current Baltimore Raven Chris Wormley.

D.J. Turner, CB, Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy, 6-0, 165 pounds, three stars

Turner is a playmaker who can get up in the air and make plays on the ball. He has a knack for getting his hands on passes and has good make-up speed, as well. He plays with a lot of confidence and physicality. Once he can add some pounds to his 6-foot-0, 165-pound frame, he has the look of a future starting corner.

Mike Sainristil, CB, Everett (Mass.), 5-10, 175 pounds, three stars

A one-time Virginia Tech commit, Michigan flipped Sainristil late in the fall, when he was having a stellar senior campaign and won Gatorade Player of the Year in Massachusetts. At 5-foot-10, 175 pounds, he does not have standout measureables, but he was excellent on both sides of the ball in high school. He is a heady, instinctive player who makes plays on the football and is almost always in good position to make plays. Sainristil was an early enrollee.

Gabe Newburg, DE, Clayton (Ohio) Northmont, 6-5, 235 pounds, three stars

Newburg grew up a Michigan fan, so when the Wolverines offered, the 6-foot-5, 235-pound defensive end took very little time to come to a decision. Newburg plays with great intensity and has the agility and flexibility to bend the corner and beat offensive linemen with quickness or counter moves. He is an excellent student with great intangibles, according to his high school coaches. He enrolled early.

Charles Thomas

Charles Thomas LB, Oakdale (Conn.) St. Thomas More, 6-0, 222 pounds, three stars

A compact 6-foot-0, 222-pound backer, Thomas hits like a bigger player and showed good change of direction on his film. His 37-inch vertical also backs up how explosive of a kid he is. He also times his blitzes well and was excellent at shooting gaps in high school.

Zach Carpenter, OL, Cincinnati (Ohio) Moeller, 6-5, 310 pounds, three stars

Carpenter (6-5, 310 pounds) is an Ed Warinner-type guy and another in what is a very tough, strong group of offensive linemen. He played at one of the top programs in Ohio and as a senior and his film at center was outstanding. He could play guard, as well, in college.

Jack Stewart, OT, New Caanan (Conn.), 6-5, 280 pounds, three stars

Stewart was a two-way lineman in high school, and like the other offensive linemen in this class, his high school film has a good amount of pancakes on it. His high school coaches spoke highly of the intensity with which he played, his strength, and his upside because of the room he still has to grow. He is listed as a tackle but can play guard as well.

George Johnson III, WR, Stuart (Fla.) Martin County, 5-11, 185 pounds, three stars

Johnson played quarterback and wide receiver in high school, and made a lot of plays at both. He was timed at 4.55 in the 40 and shows burst and also runs through contact. He plays bigger than his listed 5-foot-11, 185 pounds. He may be one of the more under-the-radar guys in this class, but could be a surprise because of his varied skill set and toughness.

Quintel Kent, WR, Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward, 6-0, 170 pounds, three stars

Michigan had him in camp and offered him, and he validated the offer as a senior when he played very well for his team, including in spotlight games against tough schools like Detroit Cass Tech. A smooth, smart route-runner with natural ball tracking skills, Kent was also a dangerous return man. While he is not one of the higher-ranked guys in the class, he has a chance to be one of the biggest steals.

Joey Velazquez, S, Columbus (Ohio) St. Francis DeSales, 6-0, 205 pounds, three stars

Velazquez is the viper in this class. He is a put-together 6-foot-0, 205 pounds with 4.5 speed. He was excellent in the box in high school as he takes great angles to the ball and is a sure tackler. At the time Michigan offered, he was not a big-name prospect, but he is a hard-working, productive kid who can run to the ball.

Quinten Johnson, S, Washington (D.C.) St. John’s College, 5-11, 190 pounds, four stars

Johnson, an Under Armour All-American, has verified 4.48 speed. He likes contact and regularly delivered jarring hits in high school. He played good competition and his wide receiver experience showed his ball skills, as well.