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Michigan Wolverines Football-Harbaugh Sees Starters Everywhere In New Class

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Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh and his staff signed another top 10 recruiting class this year. None of them could wait to send in their letters of intent, Harbaugh said.

Speaking on the Inside Michigan Radio Show with Jon Jansen, Harbaugh said all of the players committed were eager to get their letters in early.

“The main thing is they’ll show up with a great attitude, be excited about it, take that next step in their life,” Harbaugh said. “Every guy seems really ready to do that. Every guy we thought was going to sign, everybody we sent an National Letter of Intent to, they were committed and confident … we had every signature in by 2:30. That speaks volumes.”

West Coasters Cade McNamara, Zach Charbonnet and Giles Jackson all got theirs in at 7:00 a.m. their time, the earliest they could in their time zones.

The goal in the class was to fill needs, of course, and Harbaugh was pleased with the result.

“We wanted it to be a broad class where we could look and see if there was a potential starter across the entire class,” he said. “The only exception being punter and kicker. We felt we were good in those two areas. Across the board with skill players, offensive line, defensive line, ‘backers, backs, etc. … it really covers just about every position in this class.

They hit both lines hard, he continued.

“We love having the big guys,” he said. “I know these guys are really strong, too. Quite a few 450-pound benches. Nolan Rumler, Zach Carpenter, Mazi Smith, those guys are really, really strong.

“Then we have big athletic guys like David Ojabo, Mike Morris. Karsen Barnhardt is a really athletic big guy who scored 27 points and grabbed 15 rebounds for Paw Paw [the other night in basketball]. He’s that kind of real athlete, a strong offensive lineman who is going to develop under Ed Warinner.”

Rumler has a weight room in his garage he’s extremely proud of. Tight end Erick All has a weight set up outside “like right out of Rocky IV,” Harbaugh added.

McNamara, defensive ends Gabe Newburgh and Mike Morris, lineman Chris Hinton and others are all exceptional students, he added, though nobody scored higher on the SAT than receiver Cornelius Johnson and his 1480.

Two of the standouts, McNamara and five-star Daxton Hill, were exactly what Harbaugh was looking for at each position.

“He’s a gunslinger. I love that about Cade,” Harbaugh said. “He goes back and he’s got really good arm talent, really good accuracy. He’s got no conscience, goes back and lets it rip, not thinking bout anything but making a play, and he’s got the confidence to do it.

“He threw for the most yards ever in the state of Nevada. He’s a competitor, a winner, a difference maker. You watch his tape, what he does for his team, he puts them on his back. He’s just got that kind of grooming to him, can see it in his demeanor, on tape, a real genuine confidence he has and gets it from he doesn’t want to lose. A gritty competitor.

“I was drawn to him immediately within the first conversation … this is the guy I wanted the quarterback to be in this class.”

Hill, meanwhile, comes from a great family, Harbaugh said.

“He’s a fantastic player … his brother Justice is an outstanding running back at Oklahoma State, going to be a pro running back.

“Daxton is gifted athletically, also a playmaker. You watch his game, the amount of plays he makes, the fumbles he causes … the hits he makes. He’s a hitter, not afraid of contact, great contact courage. He may be the fastest guy on the field. I didn’t see a game where he wasn’t the fastest guy out there.

“He’s going to be that type of payer in college. A big time safety. Michigan has no shortage of big time safeties, but he’s a low key guy, doesn’t like a lot of attention. I love humility that way, but he’s got the ability to be one of best safeties Michigan has ever had.”

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