When it came to choosing a college football program, Sammy Faustin found a place that was as close to home as he anticipated. Michigan didn’t have the palm trees or the warm weather that Naples, Fla., has, but Faustin felt a fit that would provide for him academically and athletically.
Read more about what brought Faustin, a defensive back, to Ann Arbor. Faustin also told Land of 10 some of the highlights and lighter moments of his recruiting process, including choosing Michigan over Virginia and the personal grooming discussion he had with Wolverines coach Jim Harbaugh.
Q: If you could give a junior only one piece of advice about the recruiting process, what would it be?
Faustin: I’d say you have to be patient. Keep your head down and keep working towards what you know you want to be. Be patient for when the time comes. God knows everything and he has the perfect timing. You have to be patient. Keep working hard and be patient.
Q: What school came in second? What could it have done better?
Faustin: “I played football with Wooby Theork, a wide receiver who went to Virginia, and it would have been cool to live with him. Michigan won out. When I went to Michigan and then when I went to Virginia, I didn’t feel the same vibe. It didn’t feel like I wanted to be there. Nothing had to do with the people. It was me, I didn’t feel like, ‘This is where I want to be.’ I felt that at Michigan.”
Q: What was the most creative thing a school or coach did to get your attention?
Faustin: “The first funny thing I saw and remember, it was something from Iowa State. They sent me a card with my favorite NFL team and my face on someone’s body. I thought, that’s kind of cool. It was also kind of funny because my head was smaller than the player’s body!”
Q: What is the funniest thing any head coach said to you during the recruiting process, either on phone or in person?
Faustin: “There’s some good ones, but I can’t remember other coaches, specifically. But I had a funny moment with Jim Harbaugh.
“The first time we met, I had cologne on and he said to me, ‘hey, that smells good! What is it?’
“I told him, ‘it’s Rue 21.’ He thought it was Brut. He took me into his bathroom in his office on campus, and shows me the cologne he uses. It was in a green bottle, and I don’t remember what it was. But I wasn’t expecting that.”
Q: Which coach was it the hardest to say no? That you weren’t coming there?
Faustin: “It probably would have been [defensive coordinator] Nick Howell from Virginia. The conversation went well. I wasn’t nervous, but it was hard to say ‘no.’ But it’s like, for instance, the Florida State head coach [Jimbo Fisher]. He had to leave. It’s the same thing as picking a college. You’re going to go where it’s best for you.”
Q: Why did Michigan win out over the other schools that recruited you?
Faustin: “I had just gotten the offer [junior year] and one of the first things that made me really feel like that’s where I wanted to be was when [defensive coordinator Don] Brown asked me, ‘Do you want to go to the NFL?’
“I said, ‘yeah,’ and he said, ‘come to Michigan.’
When I got the chance to go and visit [in the spring of 2017], it felt like the environment was, ‘this is where I want to be. I’m home.’ ”