It does not snow much in Leesburg, Georgia.
The record for single day snowfall there is 1.7 inches and that was in 1973.
Michigan fans considered it fortunate, then, that the star football player in that town, five-star defensive tackle Aubrey Solomon, visited in early November, a time when the weather around the Great Lakes is historically unpredictable, and drew a pleasant day.
As Solomon’s teammates, junior safety Otis Reese and senior fullback Tory Carter, watched Michigan’s players slide across a snow-covered Big House in celebration of a win over Indiana last Saturday, those same fans may have wondered if that was the best week to have a slew of recruiting visitors from the south.
If Reese, who is committed to the Wolverines, and Carter, who is heavily considering them, are to suit up in maize and blue one day, playing in colder temperatures is a reality they must face eventually anyway. The old recruiting adage is, if you want to go to the NFL (and almost all recruits do), you might as well get used to playing outside in whatever Mother Nature throws at you.
They also got to see the first snowfall of the year, something the Michigan players embraced.
“They dealt with (the weather) pretty good,” said Reese of Carter and his family. “At first they were like, ‘It’s cold,’ but when the snow came, everybody’s energy got up. Everybody started getting pumped. I guess when you’re tuned in and having fun you kind of forget about (the cold). And the snow was kind of fun at the same time."
Of course, there is much more to Michigan than snow, as well.
For Carter, Michigan’s use of the fullback (current fullback Khalid Hill has nine touchdowns this season) is a big reason he is giving the Wolverines a look, despite his verbal to LSU. Reese’s commitment and influence is another part of that.
"Michigan is front and center at the moment,” Carter said following his visit.
“A big part of his decision is (LSU interim head coach) Ed Orgeron and whether he stays or not,” The Michigan Insider’s Sam Webb said. “That’s what he was saying before the visit. After the visit, there is still talk Orgeron might get the job, but Michigan definitely made move with him regardless.”
Carter is not ready to make any further decisions, but it was clear the official visit weekend moved the Wolverines’ stock up, snow and all.
Said Reese, “I think he liked it a lot.”
Wolverine commits, recruits play for state titles
While Michigan plays Ohio State for a trip to the Big Ten title game on Saturday, one member of the Wolverines’ recruiting class will be playing for a state championship.
Jaylen Kelly-Powell, a senior safety at Detroit Cass Tech, will play Detroit Catholic Central for the Division 1 state title at 1 p.m. on Fox Sports Detroit.
Later in the day, at 7:30 p.m., linebacker commit Josh Ross and his Orchard Lake St. Mary’s team will play Muskegon for the Division 3 title.
Other recruits of interest to Michigan fans during those games include Cass Tech senior wide receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones, who has Michigan as one of his top choices, as well as junior cornerback Kalon Gervin and Muskegon junior offensive tackle Antwan Reed, both of whom hold Wolverine offers.
On Friday at 1 p.m., Detroit King will defend its Division 2 title against Walled Lake Western. Featured in that game will be King cornerback Ambry Thomas, one of Michigan’s top targets.
The Division 5 final, to be played Friday at 7:30 p.m. will have Detroit Country Day taking on Grand Rapids Catholic Central. Country Day junior linebacker Kolin Demens has a Michigan offer and is the younger brother of former Wolverine Kenny Demens.
Allen Trieu began covering the state of Michigan for Scout.com in 2005 and began managing the entire Midwest in 2009. He has been featured on the Big Ten Network on its annual Signing Day Show. His Michigan and Michigan State recruiting columns appear weekly at detroitnews.com.