Autoplay
Show Thumbnails
Show Captions
LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

The top 15 players on The Detroit News Blue Chip list talk about their best and worst recruiting experiences and more in this question-and-answer with David Goricki.

1. DONNIE CORLEY

Detroit King, WR/CB, 6-3, 190

College: Michigan State (early enrollee)

Best recruiting experience: “Definitely being able to have fun with my family, going to different states on my recruiting trips.”

Worst recruiting experience: “Making up my mind on where I wanted to go since there were a lot of schools that seemed like a good fit for me.”

Favorite thing about Michigan State: “It’s a great family-like atmosphere and brotherhood and I love the campus, the facilities here.”

Why not Michigan? “There could be the question ‘why not’ for a lot of schools, but I just felt more comfortable here at Michigan State.”

2. KHALID KAREEM

Farmington Hills Harrison, DE, 6-4, 250

College: Notre Dame (early enrollee)

Best recruiting experience: “Being able to travel around the country and see great institutions, great coaches and recruits.”

Worst recruiting experience: “I wouldn’t say worst, but obviously the hardest part is what school to choose; telling the coaches no is definitely hard.”

Favorite thing about Notre Dame: “Best thing about Notre Dame is it’s close to home, I get the chance to play for a great football program and the academics are amazing. I feel I’ll also get the chance to make an immediate impact.”

Why not Michigan State? “There’s a number of reasons it wouldn’t have worked out for myself, including how they had a number of players at my position already.”

Why not Michigan? “I wanted to do something different, go to a place I could make a difference.”

3. LAVERT HILL

Detroit King, CB/WR, 5-10, 180

College: Undecided. Hill is expected to announce his decision on Wednesday. His finalists are Michigan, Michigan State and Penn State.

Best recruiting experience: "It was traveling around, seeing a lot of places, different schools."

Worst recruiting experience: "Really, no worst experience. Everyone was good throughout the process."

4. DAELIN HAYES

Ann Arbor Skyline, LB/DE/TE, 6-4, 240

College: Notre Dame (early enrollee)

Best recruiting experience: “The day I had my press conference announcing I was going to play at Notre Dame, looking at my mom’s face, my dad’s face. It was a successful day.”

Worst recruiting experience: “I didn’t think the process was stressful; not ever did I have a bad moment. It was a hard decision to decommit (from USC). Really, the whole process gave me life lessons.”

Favorite thing about Notre Dame: “Being in the culture of a winning football program is excellent, and Notre Dame is elite for academics too.”

Why not Michigan State? “Notre Dame’s just a better fit for me.”

Why not Michigan? “Same answer.”

5. MICHAEL ONWENU

Detroit Cass Tech, 6-3, 350, G/DT

College: Michigan

Best recruiting experience: “Going to places and being recognized, kids knowing who you are and wanting their picture taken with you.”

Worst recruiting experience: “How sometimes fans of different colleges are talking about you on websites. I googled my name once and hate threads came up, bashing me with racial slurs.”

Favorite thing about Michigan: “They have a lot of tradition, it’s talent-rich.”

Why not Michigan State? “I’m still considering them.”

6. DESMOND FITZPATRICK

Waterford Mott, 6-3, 195, WR/CB

College: Undecided. Fitzpatrick is expected to announce his decision on Monday. His finalists are Arizona, Nebraska, Indiana and Louisville.

Best recruiting experience: “Going on visits and seeing the other recruits, going to places I haven’t been to before."

Worst recruiting experience: “Really, just stressing, and that’s what I don’t like about recruiting at all. I feel like I stress too much about it. I just have to get my mind off of it sometimes."

Why not Michigan? “Michigan offered me my junior year, but I just felt like I wouldn’t fit in at Michigan.”

Why not Michigan State? “They never offered me.”

7. DEMETRIC VANCE

Detroit Cass Tech, 6-3, 200, S/WR

College: Michigan State

Best recruiting experience: “I’d have to say taking a trip to Miami, North Carolina State and North Carolina (before junior year).”

Worst recruiting experience: “I haven’t really had any.”

Favorite thing about Michigan State: “I’ve built relationships with their coaches, love guys like Coach (Terrence) Samuel and Coach (Harlon) Barnett. Coach (Curtis) Blackwell is like my godfather.”

Why not Michigan? “It’s not like I didn’t like the coaches, because I did. I just felt Michigan State was a better fit for me.”

8. MICHAEL JORDAN

Plymouth, 6-6, 310, OT/DT

College: Ohio State (early enrollee)

Best recruiting experience: “When I took my official visit Dec. 11. It was great to go to Ohio State and see the guys. I had a great time.”

Worst recruiting experience: “When I went to Michigan my junior year and first met Coach Harbaugh. It wasn’t anything Coach Harbaugh did, but Coach (Will) Carr was putting pressure on me to commit.”

Favorite thing about Ohio State: “I love everything about the place -- campus, program, tradition. I’ve been an Ohio State fan since I was a little kid since I grew up there, lived there until I was 10 or 11.”

Why not Michigan State? “They didn’t have my major (International Business). They were tied for No. 1.”

Why not Michigan? “I just didn’t fit in that culture.”

9. CEDRICK LATTIMORE

Detroit East English, 6-5, 240, DE/TE

College: Iowa

Best recruiting experience: “Just being able to take trips to see different states, different places.”

Worst recruiting experience: “There really hasn’t been any. Maybe telling coaches I wouldn’t be going there.”

Favorite thing about Iowa: “It’s the best fit for me. It’s like a family.”

Why not Michigan State? “They came in pretty late and I didn’t have a chance to bond with the coaching staff.”

Why not Michigan? “Michigan never talked to me.”

10. TRISHTON JACKSON

West Bloomfield, 6-2, 188, WR/QB

College: Michigan State

Best recruiting experience: “When I took my official visit, went to the basketball game (win over Maryland). It was great hanging out with all the guys from my (recruiting) class.”

Worst recruiting experience: “I don’t think I had one.”

Favorite thing about Michigan State: “It’s my dream school with a great atmosphere, great coaches and players, and we win Big Ten championships.”

Why not Michigan? “Because Michigan State’s my dream school.”

11. DAVID REESE

Farmington, 6-1, 230, LB

College: Florida (early enrollee)

Best recruiting experience: “Building relationships with great, powerful guys, coaches across the nation, learning from coaches and taking things in from positive role models I’ve met.”

Worst recruiting experience: “The pressure to get offers, to be ranked, and really all you want to do is get offers and make the right decision for yourself.”

Favorite thing about Florida: “They let me come in early and I love the opportunity they’re giving me, the chance to work with Randy Shannon, the linebackers coach who is a great teacher.”

Why not Michigan State? “They never offered me.”

Why not Michigan? “I wasn’t granted an early enrollment opportunity from them.”

12. BRANDON RANDLE

Battle Creek Central, 6-2, 217, LB

College: Michigan State

Best recruiting experience: “Going on visits, getting offers.”

Worst recruiting experience: “Just not being able to take my official visits because I committed over the summer, and once you commit coaches don’t want you to visit other schools, so I didn’t take all my official visits.”

Favorite thing about Michigan State: “I like the coaches, the facilities. It just feels like a good fit for me.”

Why not Michigan? “I went to Michigan on an unofficial and talked to Coach (D.J.) Durkin, who is now head coach at Maryland, but Coach Harbaugh didn’t take the time to talk to me.”

13. JOSH JACKSON

Saline, 6-2, 200, QB

College: Virginia Tech (early enrollee)

Best recruiting experience: “My official visit to Virginia Tech was great -- a great atmosphere, people recognizing me. It was awesome.”

Worst recruiting experience: “It’s a little shady; coaches can be shady with what they say to you. But it was a good process because I had a lot of options.”

Favorite thing about Virginia Tech: “The game day experience at Virginia Tech where the players enter to (the song) “Enter Sandman.” The whole stadium starts to jump up and down. It’s crazy.”

Why not Michigan State? “They didn’t offer.”

Why not Michigan? “They offered me a scholarship as an athlete, but I wanted to play quarterback.”

14. MARTELL PETTAWAY

Detroit King, 5-10, 200, RB

College: West Virginia

Best recruiting experience: "All the attention I received from different coaches, different schools."

Worst recruiting experience: "Getting overwhelmed by everybody calling, people wanting interviews."

Favorite thing about West Virginia: "I feel comfortable there, relaxed, feeling I fit in."

Why not Michigan State? "They were my first offer, but I'm not a Michigan State fan, just not interested."

Why not Michigan? "They showed interest but never offered."

15. BRAD TANNER

Romeo, 6-2, 185, RB/WR/CB

College: Western Michigan

Best recruiting experience: "Taking a visit to Michigan State, where I watched practice, had Coach Dantonio talk for a half hour, then went to a basketball game against Louisville. I knew then I could be big time."

Worst recruiting experience: "After I committed to Western Michigan a Division III coach came in and didn't do his homework. It was a pretty awkward situation."

Favorite thing about Western Michigan: "Coach (P.J.) Fleck is an energetic guy who has big goals where we could be the next Boise State. I also get the chance to go there with my teammate, Mitch Heimbuch."

Why not Michigan State? "They didn't offer me."

Why not Michigan? "They didn't offer me."

LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE