Allen Trieu Special to The Detroit News
Published 5:02 PM EDT Jul 23, 2019
Michigan’s annual BBQ at the Big House will, as usual, have many notable recruits from around the country attending this weekend.
With the Wolverines at 22 commitments in the 2020 class, the list of rising seniors coming to campus is not long, but it does have a handful of nationally recruited prospects on it.
Many eyes will be on the defensive backfield, especially at safety where two four-star recruits, RJ Moten and Makari Paige, are coming to town with many expecting one, if not both, to end up in Michigan’s class.
Moten already visited the Wolverines in June. He called the trip “amazing” and said it left him speechless.
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A stocky 6-foot, 200-pounder, Moten has also excelled on offense as a running back and pass-catcher. On defense, those same ball skills and offensive abilities apply along with his hitting. His high school coach Garrett Lucas compared him to former Wolverine Jabrill Peppers.
“When he wants to come downhill, he doesn’t just want to tackle someone. He wants to come down with force and really smack people, like (how) Sean Taylor played,” Lucas said. “He has watched how Jabrill plays that viper position, or how he used to at Michigan, and I think that’s what I see him as.”
Paige is more of a rangy center fielder at 6-foot-3 and 190 pounds. He is also considering Kentucky, Penn State and Ohio State. He has connections with Michigan, notably teammate Cornell Wheeler, who is committed in the 2020 class. Paige has been on campus frequently and admitted that the BBQ visit would be more to hang out and be around people than fact-finding.
“We run the same defense at our school, so I could fit in well. I would be comfortable in it,” Paige said. “I talk with (defensive coordinator) Don Brown and Coach (Chris) Partridge. I like them a lot. They are good guys and give a lot of energy. They are really cool.”
More: West Bloomfield’s Makari Paige to attend Michigan football BBQ
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In addition to the two of them, Darion Green-Warren, a highly regarded cornerback from California, will be there. A recent transfer to Harbor City (Calif.) Narbonne from Mater Dei, Green-Warren has Michigan as one of six finalists along with Georgia, Michigan State, Nebraska, Penn State and USC.
A host of 2021 visitors is also expected.
The DMV (D.C., Maryland, Virginia) has been a good recruiting area for the Wolverines and that continues in the 2021 class. From Maryland, Archbishop Spalding athlete Zakee Wheatley is a 6-foot-3, 180-pound wide receiver/defensive back, and Damascus High center Ryan Linthicum, who has long had Michigan high on his list, will return to campus.
Hopewell (Va.) cornerback TreVeyon Henderson is a four-star with offers from Clemson, Notre Dame and more.
Cincinnati (Ohio) Roger Bacon running back Corey Kiner is a high-level prospect who many analysts believe Michigan is in the lead for.
The Wolverines will also get a swing at Katy (Texas) Taylor offensive tackle Hayden Conner, one of the nation’s best.
A large in-state crop is also expected. From the 2021 class, Clarkston two-way lineman Rocco Spindler, Oak Park offensive tackle Rayshaun Benny, Detroit Country Day offensive tackle Caleb Tiernan, East Lansing wide receiver Andrel Anthony and Harper Woods center Davion Weatherspoon are all expected.
Allen Trieu covers Midwest football recruiting for 247Sports. 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.
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