Michigan recruiting mailbag: Cade McNamara adds to 2019 class; basketball 2018 class should continue success
Have Michigan football recruiting questions? We’ve got answers. Join us every Wednesday for the Land of 10 Michigan recruiting mailbag to discuss Wolverines recruiting. This week we check in on Michigan’s latest commit to the 2019 class, and we also talk about next season’s basketball recruits will fit into John Beilein’s program.
Q: Cade McNamara is a nice pick-up; solid start to the 2019 recruiting class. It has the potential to be great, after a mediocre 2018 class. — Zach Eineman via Facebook
A: Cade McNamara is the 4-star quarterback from Reno, Nev., who became the sixth player to commit to Michigan in the 2019 class. Ranked as the No. 9 pro-style passer in the country by the 247Sports composite, he was committed to Notre Dame until March 2, when he changed his mind about the Irish. McNamara (6-foot-1, 187 pounds) picked up offers from Alabama and Georgia in late February and has had offers from Southern California and Tennessee as well as Wisconsin.
McNamara has been a starter since his freshman season at Damonte Ranch High School and has thrown for more than 9,000 yards and 107 touchdowns in three seasons, according to MaxPreps.
It will be interesting see if Michigan continues to pursue quarterbacks in this class. The Wolverines had two lined up for 2018 before Kevin Doyle flipped to Arizona on National Signing Day. Joe Milton signed in December and is on campus now as an early enrollee. Do they want to add another quarterback to the future roster? There are four scholarship quarterbacks at this time: Besides Milton, junior Shea Patterson is awaiting the NCAA’s decision on his request for immediate eligibility after transferring from Mississippi; sophomore Brandon Peters started four games last season; and freshman Dylan McCaffrey is in the competition after running the scout team offense as a redshirt last season.
I don’t agree that the 2018 class is “mediocre.” While it isn’t a top 10-ranked class as the 2016 and 2017 classes were, it has a lot of players who should end up having excellent careers at Michigan. This is a good class with players who might not have been as highly rated but fit in well with the program and have upside.
RELATED: 2019 Michigan recruiting big board
Q: How about B-ball recruits? — Robert Delamarter via Facebook
A: A timely topic with the Michigan men’s basketball team set to face Texas A&M in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament on Thursday night.
Michigan has a strong class coming in next season with five players signed. I did a feature on forward Brandon Johns and point guard David DeJulius this month. They are in-state players who fit into John Beilein’s motion offense that accentuates players with versatile skills. DeJulius’ high school coach compared him to former Wolverines point guard Trey Burke in regard to how DeJulius moves without the ball.
Ignas Brazdeikis is a 6-8 forward who could be the most talented of the group. While Johns is a more physical player, Brazdeikis’ strength is his shooting ability. Both players are versatile enough inside and outside, but their strengths are different. Brazdeikis is sure to draw comparisons to Moe Wagner because of his European heritage (Brazdeikis was born in Lithuania, and now lives in Toronto).
Center Colin Castleton and shooting guard Adrien Nunez are the other signees. Castleton is 6-10, 215, and can be the presence down low that the Wolverines lack at times. Jon Teske has provided some of that style this season without disrupting the pace of play and ball movement that Beilein wants. Nunez (6-5) has taken advantage of a year at St. Thomas More, a prep school in Connecticut, to improve his game. He’s a player who has developed his game the past two years, and it’s that development that caught Michigan’s eye.
Q: How huge would it be if Michigan can land Mr. Harrison the #1 DE out of the state of Ohio? — Tony Harden via Facebook
A: Getting Zach Harrison out of Ohio State’s backyard would indeed be a coup. Harrison is a 5-star defensive end from Lewis Center Olentangy Orange High School, a 20-minute drive to the Columbus campus. He is ranked as the No. 3 overall player in the country.
Michigan hosted Harrison last weekend for its junior day event and he told 247Sports that he feels good about the Wolverines. Christopher Hinton, a 5-star defensive end already committed to Michigan for 2019, was also there working the recruiting angles. Like all recruits, Harrison is interested in how he would fit into a particular defensive scheme. It’s hard to imagine any defensive player not being impressed with what defensive coordinator Don Brown has to show.
It doesn’t appear Harrison is ready to make any sort of decision at this point but Michigan is in the conversation.
Q: Does McElwain bring Michigan any recruiting advantages with the state of Florida? ― Melvin Marshall Jr. via Facebook
A: Not really. Jim McElwain wasn’t at Florida long enough to make significant inroads into the recruiting relationships that you’re referencing. Remember, he was there only three seasons. McElwain was hired at Florida a little before Jim Harbaugh was hired at Michigan, and he came from Colorado State. It’s not as if he had tight connections to Florida before arriving in Gainesville.
Colleague Rachel Lenzi wrote about McElwain as a recruiter a couple of weeks ago. Barton Simmons, 247Sports director of football scouting, said in the article that while he wouldn’t consider McElwain a game-changer as a recruiter, he is more than capable of adding to Michigan’s staff as a capable recruiter.
McElwain is also working on a one-year contract with Michigan as its wide receivers coach. He very well could be elsewhere this time next year.
Have a question about Michigan recruiting? Tweet us @Landof10MICH or follow on the Land of 10/Michigan Facebook page and ask us there. We’ll try to answer in a future mailbag. Check to see if your issue already was addressed by reading previous Michigan recruiting mailbags here.