Big Ten: Jeremy Jackson

Michigan begins spring practice on Saturday with both some question marks and some major returning talent. Brady Hoke says of his team: "We're very young. But these guys have a lot of fight to them." There will also be a lot of fighting for starting jobs, beginning in a few days. I recently caught up with the third-year Wolverines coach for his thoughts on the approach of spring ball:

What are the main things you're looking for this spring?

Brady Hoke: Well, you know, we've got a lot of open spaces. Some guys graduated, some guys aren't with the program anymore and we've got a lot of young guys. I think we only have 11 starters back on both sides of the ball, so there's going to be a lot of great competition, which is exciting. I think the leadership of our seniors, they've done a nice job of holding everybody accountable. But when you get out there with the pads on, it's a little different than just running around in shorts.

[+] EnlargeBrady Hoke
Andrew Weber/USA TODAY SportsWith only 11 returning starters, Michigan coach Brady Hoke said he's excited about the competition this spring.
Some of that competition will be on the offensive line, where you've got three open jobs on the interior. How do you see those battles right now?


BH: Well, I think the interior of both lines, there's going to be a lot of competition. We've got to find a center, and that's between [Jack] Miller and [Graham] Glasgow, and Joey Burzynski will try to figure that out a little bit, too. At the guard positions, Ben Braden is going to move down inside and start out at the left guard, but he'll have a lot of competition because Burzynski is back and so is Blake Bars. Kyle Kalis will move into the right side, and it will be interesting again with [Kyle] Bosch and some of the guys who have been here a little bit. I think it will be a really good competition at all three of those inside positions.

Having Taylor [Lewan] back is huge. I think it's great for him and great for Michigan. Mike Schofield has had a really good winter. He had some real bright spots during the course of last season, and I think his development is going to be something special.

You mentioned the defensive line, where you also lost a couple of veterans. How does that shape up?

BH: I think inside, we get Jibreel Black for another year and Quinton Washington. But once you get through that, there are a lot of young guys ... Willie Henry, Ondre Pipkins, Ryan Glasgow, Richard Ash and Chris Wormley are all guys who can either play the inside tackle or the strongside end. We'll find out the guys who are competitive. Tommy Strobel is another guy we think had a real good winter, and Keith Heitzman. So it's going to be fun to see them compete.

Does having so many young guys in key spots on the line make you nervous? Or do you have a lot of confidence in them because you recruited most of them?

BH: I think it makes you nervous if you think you may have recruited the wrong guys. But we like the work ethic. We like how they've come in to learn and with a lot of enthusiasm. I think there's some competitiveness that we need to keep pushing as a program. You know, we lost five games on the road. We've played pretty well at home but we've got to do better on the road and that's a mindset, a mentality that you have to compete through everything, on every down.

Devin Gardner goes into spring practice as your starting quarterback. How has he developed as a leader?

BH: I have been really excited about the progress he's made. I'm seeing that maturity that it takes and the leadership it takes and the competitiveness it takes to be the quarterback at Michigan. I think that's a real big part of how he's grown, and I think he's done a nice job with it. I'm liking the direction he's going, and hopefully he can just keep going and keep growing.

What about your running back position this spring, with Fitz Toussaint hurt and Derrick Green not there yet?

BH: You know, Fitz has come along pretty well. I don't think he'll do a lot of contact or anything like that, but I think he'll be cleared for a lot more drill work. That's gone real well. We've moved [Dennis] Norfleet back to running back and we're going to give him an opportunity. Dennis, he's a smaller guy, but he's a very competitive, very tough young man. Drake Johnson is a guy we redshirted a year ago, and we really liked the way he competed in scout situations. In the bowl practices, we did some scrimmages and gave him a lot of carries, and we're very excited about what he has to offer.

Thomas Rawls is coming back, and I think he learned a lot last year about the vision he needs to play with, and I like how he's competed through the [winter]. And Justice Hayes is a guy who gives you a little bit different look because of how he can get on the perimeter. He did some things in a couple of games last year, but now I think he'll have a big stage to prove himself more this spring. And he's a bigger guy now, he's 190-something pounds, so he's a little bigger.

[+] EnlargeDrew Dileo
Kim Klement/USA TODAY SportsMichigan coach Brady Hoke said that he's pleased by more than just the on-field success of WRs Drew Dileo and Jeremy Gallon.
You have Jeremy Gallon back at receiver, but you lost Roy Roundtree. You sounded excited about some of the younger guys there during bowl prep. Is spring their time to step up now?

BH: Yeah, I think so. First of all, I think the leadership with Gallon and Drew Dileo, they've done a really nice job being leaders at that position. They're not big guys, but they have a real spirit for the game and really do a nice job of working and leading. We have Amara Darboh, who played a little last year, and Jehu Chesson, who we redshirted a year ago. And I think Jeremy Jackson has had a very good winter; we're very excited about some of the progress he's made. Joe Reynolds is a guy who walked on here, and he's done a very nice job. And Bo Dever, his dad played here and he walked on. I think that during the course of the spring, we'll be in pretty good shape there. I think as we keep going, we'll keep improving at that position.

Linebacker was a strength for you last year and looks to be so again. Do you see some good competition there this spring, particularly at the weakside spot?

BH: Yeah, I think with Desmond Morgan and James Ross, there's going to be great competition. Joe Bolden and Royce Jenkins-Stone and Mike Jones are all guys who are very competitive, and I think the three young guys coming in are going to be guys who will give us a lot of good competition and a lot of good depth. Kaleb Ringer is coming back from injury, so we'll see what he can give us. At the sam linebacker, Jake [Ryan] is coming back, and we really like what Cam Gordon has done during the winter. So I think we feel a little stronger at that position.

How do you replace what Jordan Kovacs gave you in the secondary?

BH: I don't know if you ever replace that kind of leadership, but I really think Thomas Gordon, he's played a lot of football here, and it's time for him to demonstrate the leadership. And he's doing that. Because of the number of snaps and everything he's done, he's really fallen into his own a little bit. Courtney Avery has played a lot of football, and whether he's a corner a nickel or wherever, he's got to give us great leadership and great reps. Blake Countess is getting healthier; he'll do some things during the spring. Josh Furman, I think, has come on.

We've got to see where Terry Richardson is and where Marvin Robinson is. Both those guys have played a number of snaps. We've got Raymon Taylor back, who I think started every game for us last year, we're excited about his development. Dymonte Thomas is a guy who's going to compete, and he'll pressure some guys. Jarrod Wilson is another guy who played some last year for us. Ross Douglas is here early. Jeremy Clark is a 6-foot-4, 210-pound safety we redshirted a year ago, and it's going to be a big spring for him to make some moves.

So I think we may have more personnel back there. And even more in the fall when Channing Stribling gets in, and Reon Dawson gets in and Jourdan Lewis. I think it's going to add something to our secondary.

Finally, what has your message been to the team this offseason after last year's 8-5 season?

BH: Well, our message has been, we haven't met the expectations at Michigan. That's something that as a football community… that we really feel that we have to do a much better job in all areas, from the coaching aspect of it, from learning and playing with the competitiveness we want to have, from every player at every position playing with the intensity we want to play with. It's about having a mindset and a mentality of how we want to play the game. We make no excuses, but at the same time, we know we have a lot we can do to play better football.
Michigan coach Brady Hoke said earlier this month he was still gathering information on wayward receiver Darryl Stonum's latest run-in with the law and would make a decision on Stonum's status.

Today, that decision came down, and it was really the only one to make: Hoke has dismissed the troubled Stonum from the team.

"I love Darryl and wish him nothing but the absolute best," Hoke said in a statement. "However, there is a responsibility and a higher standard you must be accountable to as a University of Michigan football student-athlete. That does not and will not change. It's unfortunate because I believe he has grown a great deal as a person since the beginning of the season. My hope is that maturing process continues."

Stonum's maturation process was severely called into question yet again when he was sentenced to 10 days in jail on Jan. 6 for violating his probation. Stonum was arrested for drunken driving as a freshman in 2008, then spent three days in jail in the summer of 2010 for violating probation. In the latest incident, he was stopped for driving on a suspended license while going to a probation meeting, and then lied to his probation officer about how he got there. At least he doesn't lack for nerve.

As Hoke mentioned in this statement, there is a standard for playing at a program like Michigan and others in the Big Ten, and having a guy who has now spent nearly two weeks in jail on probation violations alone falls short of this standard. Hoke inherited the Stonum mess, but cleaning it up was his first major disciplinary litmus test as Wolverines coach. He has set a good tone by not allowing Stonum to come back, proving he doesn't value winning over everything.

Stonum has started 25 games and played in 36 during his career, catching 76 passes for 1,008 yards and six touchdowns. He also returned 62 kickoffs for 1,538 yards and holds the single-season kickoff return mark with 39 returns for 1,001 yards in 2009. He redshirted this past season in response to his legal troubles.

"I appreciate everything the University of Michigan, Dave Brandon and Coach Hoke have done for me," Stonum said in the school's release. "I look forward to continuing my football career down the road, but more importantly, right now I'm focused on graduating from Michigan this spring. I understand only I am responsible for my actions. I'm sad about how all of this turned out, but I completely understand. I love this school and my team and will miss them all greatly. But I'll always be a Wolverine. I know I have grown and matured as a person over the last nine months, and I will continue to learn and grow every day. I want to thank everyone for all of their support, and I hope they will support me in the future."

We sincerely hope Stonum views this as a wake-up call and stops making poor choices. Perhaps he can transfer to a lower-level NCAA school and finish his college career, or take his chances as an NFL free agent. He could have been an important playmaker for the Michigan offense next season, especially with productive receiver Junior Hemingway graduating. Jeremy Gallon had a nice sophomore season but is a slot guy at 5-foot-8. The Wolverines will have to hope that Jeremy Jackson continues to improve, that Roy Roundtree can bounce back with a better senior season and that some youngsters come through at wideout, a position that looks a little shaky heading into spring ball.

But there are some things that are more important than experience and talent on the depth chart. Stonum earned his way out of the Michigan program, and good for Hoke for recognizing that.
Michigan has lost two players this week, although neither departure should sting too much.

Team officials confirmed that wide receiver Je'Ron Stokes has left the Wolverines. Stokes played in each of the past two seasons, mostly on special teams, and recorded three receptions for 27 yards.

He didn't appear to be a big part of the plan on offense this fall, as Michigan returns veteran wideouts Roy Roundtree and Junior Hemingway, and younger receivers such as Jeremy Jackson have received good reviews during preseason camp.

Some will remember Stokes from his route to Michigan. The heralded recruit was headed to Tennessee before the Vols fired Phil Fulmer as coach. He decided instead to join the Wolverines but never blossomed on the field.

Michigan on Monday confirmed the departure of freshman offensive lineman Tony Posada.

Neither departure hurts Michigan much in the grand scheme. The Wolverines could be a bit thin at receiver in 2012, although Darryl Stonum is expected to return after being forced to redshirt this season.

Practice nuggets from Michigan

August, 20, 2010
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My apologies for posting this late, but I finally got a chance to review the Big Ten Network's football preview tour stop at Michigan. The crew of Dave Revsine, Gerry DiNardo and Howard Griffith attended a Wolverines practice last week.

Here are some nuggets and observations:
  • We get to see Tate Forcier's wing-less helmet very early in the show, although we know now that he has regained his wings. Forcier seemed to be No. 3 in the quarterback rotation during drills, behind both Denard Robinson and Devin Gardner. "Denard and Devin got most of the reps today," DiNardo said. But head coach Rich Rodriguez maintains the race is open. Forcier, to his credit, made some crisp throws in the practice.
  • The BTN crew picked Robinson to be the starter when the season opens Sept. 4. Although he misfired on a few outside throws in individual drills, he looked more comfortable overall as a passer.
  • Gardner's size and mobility make him a pretty exciting young prospect. He likely won't be the starter for the opener, but you figure he'll be in the mix at some stage. "He has the most ability of the three quarterbacks," DiNardo said.
  • We learned quite a bit during the M drill, where a running back dashes through a line of four blockers and four defenders. Michael Cox had several nice runs, following a block from tight end Brandon Moore on one play. Kelvin Grady followed a block by Erik Gunderson and shot through the line, while burly back Stephen Hopkins broke through tackles with a powerful run on one play. Defensive standouts in the drill included end Jibreel Black, safety Brandin Hawthorne and tackle Will Campbell, who made a very nice tackle on Hopkins. There also were some good team efforts, including blocks from Michael Schofield and Quinton Washington, and a team tackle by Richard Ash and Jonas Mouton.
  • The secondary remains a concern, but a few players stood out in individual drills. Safety Vlad Emilien had a huge hit against Fitzgerald Toussaint, and safety Josh Furman forced a fumble by freshman receiver Ricardo Miller in a 1-on-1 matchup.
  • There's no reason defensive tackle Mike Martin shouldn't have an excellent year for Michigan. He's got excellent strength and good size at 6-2, 299. "There’s very little he doesn’t do well," DiNardo said. Campbell also looked good in this practice, both physically and with his play. DiNardo thinks Campbell will be most effective when lined up directly over the center. "He's really picked up his game," Griffith said. Griffith also likes the freshman Black.
  • It was really fun to watch Martin and center David Molk go at it in a 1-on-1 drill. A ton of strength in that matchup, which it appeared Molk won. Offensive tackle Perry Dorrestein and defensive tackle Renaldo Sagesse also had a good battle. It was a pretty good day overall for the offensive line. DiNardo particularly likes tackle Patrick Omameh.
  • We didn't see a ton from the linebackers, although the first group in one drill was Craig Roh, Mouton and, yes, Mark Moundros, the team's starting fullback, at middle linebacker. It'll be interesting to see how much Moundros pushes Obi Ezeh and others for playing time.
  • Cox looked the best among the running backs, although several of them have impressive speed, including Toussaint. Hopkins certainly stands out from the group because of his size (6-foot, 227 pounds).
  • The BTN crew really likes Michigan's wide receivers, especially Roy Roundtree. They also noted the play of freshman Jeremy Jackson, one of the team's bigger receivers at 6-foot-3. "They’ve got the right number at wide receiver," DiNardo said. "You can't say that about every position in the program."
  • In interviews, Martin talked about the defense being closer this year, and Rodriguez expressed concern about the kicking game.

Wolverines announce 27-man class

February, 3, 2010
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Not surprisingly, it didn't take long for Michigan to announce its full recruiting class after heralded safety Demar Dorsey officially signed about an hour ago.

The Wolverines bring in 27 new players, at least 12 of whom will try to help a beleaguered defense that really needs a jolt in 2010. Michigan started very quickly in recruiting, and while UM might not have a ton of elite prospects, the class is very solid across the board. Obviously, Dorsey gives Michigan a big name at a very big position.

A few notes on Michigan's class:

  • The class consists of players from nine different states, including 11 from Ohio, four from Michigan and three players from both Florida and Pennsylvania.
  • Seven of the signees have already enrolled for the winter 2010 semester: quarterback Devin Gardner, running back Stephen Hopkins, wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, wide receiver Ricardo Miller, offensive lineman Christian Pace, wide receiver Jerald Robinson and running back Austin White.
  • UM signed a pair of brothers, cornerback Terrence Talbott and defensive tackle Terry Talbott, from Wayne High School in Huber Heights, Ohio. In addition to the Talbott brothers, the Wolverines had Warren G. Harding teammates Davion Rogers and D.J. Williamson join the fold.
  • The Wolverines signed two players on the ESPNU 150: Dorsey (12) and Gardner (128).
Michigan quarterback recruit Devin Gardner has officially enrolled at the school.

Gardner told me Tuesday afternoon that he enrolled and started classes earlier in the day. University officials confirmed the enrollment, and Gardner's name now appears in Michigan's online student directory.

The 6-foot-4, 198-pound quarterback was unable to enroll for the start of the term, and it appeared as though he wouldn't start practicing with the team until August. But Gardner completed his requirements at Inkster (Mich.) High School and enrolled a week and a half after the semester started (Jan. 6).

He joins six other early enrollees at Michigan: Austin White, Jeremy Jackson, Ricardo Miller, Christian Pace, Stephen Hopkins and Jerald Robinson.

Gardner now will be able to practice with the team this spring, which should really help him as he tries to push Tate Forcier and Denard Robinson on the depth chart. Forcier enrolled early last year and had a clear advantage over Robinson, who didn't arrive until preseason camp.
Six of Michigan's incoming recruits enrolled early at the school for the spring semester, but the bigger news is who won't be on campus.

Quarterback Devin Gardner, an ESPNU 150 prospect, didn't make the deadline to start classes at Michigan.

Gardner hoped to graduate from Inkster High School in time to start at Michigan on Wednesday. He also would have been able to participate in spring practice, much like Wolverines starting quarterback Tate Forcier did last year as a true freshman. Instead, Gardner will join the team this summer, where he still intends to compete for the starting job.

It would have been interesting to see Gardner out there in spring ball, which clearly helped Forcier gain the inside track to the top job last year. Gardner, thought by some to be Michigan's ultimate answer at quarterback, would have had 15 practices plus the whole summer before preseason camp. Wolverines quarterback Denard Robinson generated buzz in the preseason last August with his athletic ability, but it was clear he didn't have as strong a grasp on the system as Forcier when the season started.

If Gardner wants to be a factor this fall, he'll need to catch on very quickly in August.

Who ended up enrolling early at Michigan? Wide receivers Jeremy Jackson, Jerald Robinson and Ricardo Miller, running backs Stephen Hopkins and Austin White, and offensive lineman Christian Pace.

Big Ten recruiting scorecard

July, 30, 2009
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Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Penn State and Ohio State both add big-name recruits, and other teams fill in the gaps. Here's your updated recruiting scorecard. 

ILLINOIS

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Corey Cooper, quarterback Chandler Whitmer, tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz
  • Quick take: No new commits for the Illini, but a solid class is taking shape with Fiedorowicz's recent pledge. Wide receiver Kyle Prater remains a good possibility for Illinois, which will take advantage of a strong in-state crop in 2010. 

INDIANA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 15
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Indiana's fast start is one of the more intriguing early storylines in Big Ten recruiting. Time will tell if the Hoosiers are being too impulsive with their offers, but several of their additions look solid. Linebacker Jack Denton is a very nice pickup for Mike Yeager, and Cameron Cole adds depth in the secondary.

IOWA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end Matt Hoch, tackle Andrew Donnal
  • Quick take: Things have slowed down a bit for Iowa, which got its last commitment from Donnal on July 13. Iowa has bolstered both lines and its linebacking corps, which loses Pat Angerer and A.J. Edds after the season. The next step: more skill guys.

MICHIGAN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 16
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Devin Gardner, wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, wide receiver Ricardo Miller, guard Christian Pace, safety Marvin Robinson
  • Quick take: Nothing new for Michigan, which should be fairly selective from here on out after a very quick start. Rich Rodriguez will look to bolster both lines after stocking up on skill guys early on.

MICHIGAN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end William Gholston, linebacker Max Bullough, quarterback Joe Boisture
  • Quick take: Safety Isaiah Lewis fits the Mark Dantonio mold in the secondary and gives Michigan State its second defensive back commitment for 2010. The Spartans have good balance among their 10 commits and soon could add heralded wide receiver Tony Jones. 

MINNESOTA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: All has been quiet on the Gophers' recruiting front since a flurry of additions in late June and early July. Minnesota's re-commitment to the run game has paid off with Donnell Kirkwood and Lamonte Edwards. Tim Brewster now must address the defense in the coming weeks and months.

NORTHWESTERN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 7
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: No new commitments for the Wildcats, who are still looking to land their first in-state prospect. Northwestern has more high-level early commits (Paul Jorgenson, Trevor Siemian) than in past seasons, and Pat Fitzgerald seems willing to be patient as he fills out a smallish class. 

OHIO STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Tackle Andrew Norwell, linebacker Jamel Turner, defensive end David Durham, running back Roderick Smith, defensive end Darryl Baldwin, wide receiver James Louis
  • Quick take: Look out, here come the Buckeyes. Wideout James Louis gives Ohio State six watch list commits out of 10 and bolsters the passing game for the future. What's more impressive is that the Buckeyes went into Florida and plucked one of the state's best prospects, who had offers from all of the SEC powers. 

PENN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 15
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Wide receiver Adrian Coxson, running back Silas Redd, center Miles Dieffenbach, defensive end Kyle Baublitz, defensive tackle Evan Hailes, quarterback Robert Bolden, wide receiver Alex Kenney, defensive end Dakota Royer
  • Quick take: It's now official: Penn State has the Big Ten's top recruiting class at this point in the process. Royer gives the Nittany Lions eight watch list prospects, three of whom play defensive line. Tight end Kevin Haplea is another solid addition for Penn State, which has turned the page after some recruiting struggles during the middle part of this decade. 

PURDUE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 9
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Robert Marve (2007 watch list)
  • Quick take: Chalk up two more Florida recruits for Purdue, which added defenders E.J. Johnson and William Lucas since the last scorecard. Lucas is a bit undersized at linebacker but makes up for it with good quickness and strength. After signing 14 players from Florida in his first recruiting class, Purdue head coach Danny Hope continues to look to the Sunshine State for talent.

WISCONSIN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 12
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Frank Tamakloe
  • Quick take: The Badgers are clearly leaning toward the defense with their 2010 class and added two more defenders in safety Michael Trotter and linebacker Cody Byers, who played a lot of safety in high school and could see time there. It's not an official Wisconsin recruiting class without a running back, and Bret Bielema satisfied his quota with Jeff Lewis, a decent in-state prospect with good size.

Big Ten recruiting scorecard

July, 21, 2009
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Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

A lot of coaches were on vacation last week, so things got a bit quiet. Let's take a trip on the Big Ten recruiting trail. 

ILLINOIS

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Corey Cooper, quarterback Chandler Whitmer, tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz
  • Quick take: No action during the last week for the Illini, but a very solid class is shaping up for Ron Zook. After a very strong start with in-state recruits, Illinois could soon branch out to other areas. Linebacker Jonathan Brown is on the radar

INDIANA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 13
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Indiana has been one of the Big Ten's most active teams in early recruiting, and the results are paying off. Linebacker Ishmael Thomas is a very solid addition, and guard Bill Ivan provides depth along the offensive line. Though the group doesn't include a watch list prospect, Indiana has done very well in its region. A 3-9 season last year doesn't seem to be hurting the program at all in recruiting. 

IOWA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end Matt Hoch, tackle Andrew Donnal
  • Quick take: No new additions for the Hawkeyes, who have to be pleased with their class so far. The team loses several key pieces in the defensive front seven after the 2009 season, but players like Hoch and James Morris could make an early impact.

MICHIGAN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 16
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Devin Gardner, wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, wide receiver Ricardo Miller, guard Christian Pace, safety Marvin Robinson
  • Quick take: Austin White became the third running back to commit to the Wolverines, who hope they've solidified depth in the backfield for the foreseeable future. Michigan beat out Michigan State for White, who has two brothers who play for the Spartans. 

MICHIGAN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 9
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end William Gholston, linebacker Max Bullough, quarterback Joe Boisture
  • Quick take: Nothing new for Michigan State last week, though Mark Dantonio has to be pleased with what he sees right now. The Spartans continue to target in-state prospects like C.J. Olaniyan and Tony Jones.

MINNESOTA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Some Gophers fans took offense at my claim that the team hadn't made a big splash in recruiting yet. To be fair, offensive lineman Jimmy Gjere qualifies as a very nice pickup. The big fish is still out there, though, in local product Seantrel Henderson. Cornerback Jabari Price would be a very nice addition. 

NORTHWESTERN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 7
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Northwestern's efforts in central Florida haven't gone unnoticed, as three of the team's six commits hail from the Sunshine State. The Wildcats continued to look out of state for center Brandon Vitabile, a New Jersey native who bolsters the offensive line. Next step: Pick up a prospect or two from within the state of Illinois. 

OHIO STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 9
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Tackle Andrew Norwell, linebacker Jamel Turner, defensive end David Durham, running back Roderick Smith, defensive end Darryl Baldwin
  • Quick take: Penn State and Michigan have generated most of the recruiting headlines so far, but here come the Buckeyes. Baldwin's commitment gives Ohio State five watch list prospects out of nine and even more depth for the defensive line. He's already a physical presence who should only get better under Jim Heacock. 

PENN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 13
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Wide receiver Adrian Coxson, running back Silas Redd, center Miles Dieffenbach, defensive end Kyle Baublitz, defensive tackle Evan Hailes, quarterback Robert Bolden, wide receiver Alex Kenney
  • Quick take: The Nittany Lions kept Kenney at home, giving them seven watch list prospects out of 13. Kenney always seemed likely to pick Penn State, but there are no guarantees in recruiting. He gives Penn State seven in-state commits, a good sign for a program that saw its recruiting dip several years ago.  

PURDUE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 7
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Robert Marve (2007 watch list)
  • Quick take: Head coach Danny Hope isn't afraid to wait for recruits, but he has a nice nucleus for the 2010 class. Purdue has addressed the passing attack with two quarterbacks -- Marve and Sean Robinson -- two wide receivers and a tight end. Hope is trying to tap his Florida roots for defensive lineman Brandon Wilkinson. 

WISCONSIN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 9
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Frank Tamakloe
  • Quick take: Kansas State's loss is Wisconsin's gain as defensive end Warren Herring will play for the Badgers after originally committing to the Wildcats. Interesting subplot: Wisconsin coach Bielema used to work for Kansas State and Bill Snyder. The Badgers have recruited well on the defensive side so far with Herring, Tamakloe and linebacker Konrad Zagzebski. 

Big Ten recruiting scorecard

July, 14, 2009
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Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Illinois picks up a major commit at tight end, while Penn State bolsters its quarterback position and other teams add key pieces. Here's your latest recruiting rundown in the Big Ten.

ILLINOIS

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Corey Cooper, quarterback Chandler Whitmer, tight end C.J. Fiedorowicz
  • Quick take: Fiedorowicz is a big get for the Illini, who lose starting tight end Michael Hoomanawanui after the 2009 season. Illinois also will be breaking in a new starting quarterback and could lose superstar wideout Arrelious Benn to the NFL draft, so Fiedorowicz should be a big help during the transition.

INDIANA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 9
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Things have slowed down a bit for the Hoosiers, who are still glowing from the commitment of defensive end Jibreel Black from Cincinnati. Indiana has found a good offense-defense balance so far in the 2010 class.

IOWA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end Matt Hoch, tackle Andrew Donnal
  • Quick take: Both lines have been the focus of Iowa's recruiting so far, and the Hawkeyes made a big splash with Donnal, who could protect his fellow Ohioan Ricky Stanzi at some point down the line. At least seven of Iowa's commits could contribute on the offensive or defensive lines.

MICHIGAN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 15
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Devin Gardner, wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, wide receiver Ricardo Miller, guard Christian Pace, safety Marvin Robinson
  • Quick take: The nucleus for Michigan's 2010 class is in place, and the team hasn't added a commit since Courtney Avery on June 20. There are a ton of great athletes in this group, and Michigan likely will turn its attention to line play to wrap up the class.

MICHIGAN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 9
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end William Gholston, linebacker Max Bullough, quarterback Joe Boisture
  • Quick take: After landing its first seven commits from within state borders, Michigan State went into enemy territory -- or Mark Dantonio's home state, depending on how you look at it -- to pick up offensive linemen Travis Jackson and Michael Dennis. The two Ohio natives balance out a class that is shaping up well for the Spartans.

MINNESOTA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: The Gophers already have a strong in-state recruiting haul, and they went to the southeast for running back Donnell Kirkwood, a workhorse-type back who generated a lot of interest. Minnesota also remains in the mix for arguably the nation's biggest prize, local product Seantrel Henderson.

NORTHWESTERN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 6
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Pat Fitzgerald should never have a hard time recruiting linebackers, and Northwestern landed a good one -- with a good name -- in Chi Chi Ariguzo from Columbus, Ohio. Ariguzo can also play safety and should contribute on special teams early in his career. Northwestern has yet to land an in-state prospect.

OHIO STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Tackle Andrew Norwell, linebacker Jamel Turner, defensive end David Durham, running back Roderick Smith
  • Quick take: A quiet week for the Buckeyes after filling their backfield needs with Smith and quarterback Taylor Graham. Ohio State hopes to go back into Florida for star linebacker Jeff Luc and possibly linebacker Deon Rogers.

PENN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 12
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Wide receiver Adrian Coxson, running back Silas Redd, center Miles Dieffenbach, defensive end Kyle Baublitz, defensive tackle Evan Hailes, quarterback Robert Bolden
  • Quick take: Does Penn State currently have the Big Ten's best recruiting class for 2010? It sure looks that way as Bolden gives the Nittany Lions six watch list commitments out of 12 overall. Both Bolden and Paul Jones should be able to operate effectively in the Spread HD offense.

PURDUE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 7
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Robert Marve (2007 watch list)
  • Quick take: The quality of Purdue's commits seems to be getting better as quarterback Sean Robinson and defensive tackle Josh Davis came aboard. Robinson joins Marve and Caleb TerBush in the quarterback mix, while Davis boasts excellent size (6-foot-5, 250) for a young interior lineman.

WISCONSIN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Frank Tamakloe
  • Quick take: The quarterback position might be a question mark this season, but it's shaping up well for the future as Joseph Brennan committed to the Badgers. Brennan has good mechanics and accuracy, and he should get better with increased strength. Cameron Ontko could be a contributor at fullback or H-back down the line.

Big Ten recruiting scorecard

July, 7, 2009
7/07/09
11:10
AM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Not surprisingly, there has been plenty of recruiting news throughout the Big Ten since the last scorecard. Here's a snapshot of what went down during the last two weeks. 

ILLINOIS

  • 2010 verbal commits: 7
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Corey Cooper, quarterback Chandler Whitmer
  • Quick take: After landing several dynamic skill players, Illinois bolstered its line with guards Andy Gallik and Dexter McDonald. The Illini now have four in-state commits. 

INDIANA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 9
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Defensive end Jibreel Black highlights a very strong recruiting push for the Hoosiers. Black, whose older brother Larry will contend for a starting job on the Hoosiers' D-line this fall, had offers from 25 other schools, including Michigan State. Matt Perez and Antonio Banks give Indiana some depth at running back.  

IOWA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end Matt Hoch
  • Quick take: Hoch is the latest addition to a Hawkeyes defensive line that appears to be getting stronger and stronger for the future. He passed up a chance to join his older brother at Missouri and stayed home with the Hawkeyes. 

MICHIGAN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 15
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Devin Gardner, wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, wide receiver Ricardo Miller, guard Christian Pace, safety Marvin Robinson
  • Quick take: Things have finally slowed down for Michigan, which has stocked up on skill players for the 2010 class. It would be nice to see a few more linemen added, though it's clear speed will always be Rich Rodriguez's top priority in recruiting. 

MICHIGAN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 7
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end William Gholston, linebacker Max Bullough, quarterback Joe Boisture
  • Quick take: The quarterback position got another boost as Boisture switched his commitment from Boston College to the Spartans. All seven commits hail from the state of Michigan, and Boisture, Bullough and Gholston rank among the state's top 10 prospects. 

MINNESOTA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: The Gophers haven't made a huge splash yet, but they continue to add solid prospects, especially in the trenches. Tim Brewster's commitment to better line play and the power run game is paying off, as offensive linemen Mark Lenkiewicz and Zac Epping pledged maroon and gold. 

NORTHWESTERN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: What the Wildcats lack in quantity, they make up for with quality prospects, most recently offensive lineman Paul Jorgenson. Offensive line continues to be Northwestern's best position in recruiting, though the team still needs a few more wide receivers. 

OHIO STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Tackle Andrew Norwell, linebacker Jamel Turner, defensive end David Durham, running back Roderick Smith
  • Quick take: Smith is a very impressive addition for Ohio State, bringing an impressive blend of size and speed to the backfield. Ohio State beat out several of its Big Ten brethren for his services. After making a run at several 2010 quarterbacks, the Buckeyes finally landed one in Taylor Graham.

PENN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 11
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Wide receiver Adrian Coxson, running back Silas Redd, center Miles Dieffenbach, defensive end Kyle Baublitz, defensive tackle Evan Hailes
  • Quick take: Hailes gives Penn State as many Top 150 prospects as Michigan, and possibly just as strong a class as the Wolverines. The Lions have found a nice balance between linemen and skill players, picking up Jordan Norwood's little brother Levi at wide receiver. 

PURDUE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 6
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Robert Marve (2007 watch list)
  • Quick take: Things picked up quickly for the Boilermakers, who added five high school players in the last two weeks. Quarterback Sean Robinson highlights the group of new commits and gives Purdue another option if Marve doesn't pan out. The Boilers got some help for their quarterbacks with tight end De'Ron Flood and two wideouts. 

WISCONSIN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 6
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Frank Tamakloe
  • Quick take: Tamakloe is an excellent get for the Badgers, who are restocking their defense in the 2010 class. At 6-2 and 172 pounds, Tamakloe should grow into his frame and be a force in the secondary. He'll contend for immediate playing time along with Konrad Zagzebski.

Big Ten recruiting scorecard

June, 22, 2009
6/22/09
2:30
PM ET

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

A fairly busy week for Big Ten recruiting, highlighted by Michigan State landing defensive end William Gholston. Here's your updated recruiting scorecard (note: because of my upcoming vacation, the next scorecard will appear July 7).

ILLINOIS

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Corey Cooper, quarterback Chandler Whitmer
  • Quick take: Safety Daniel Easterly gives Illinois another dynamic defensive back, this time from the heart of Michigan State/Michigan territory in Detroit. Easterly also can play linebacker or wide receiver. Illinois appears to be close to landing several more Top 150 prospects.  

INDIANA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: A good week for Bill Lynch and the Hoosiers, who added four high school prospects to the commit list. Wideout Logan Young is a big target at 6-5, 190, and tight end Leneil Himes also adds to the passing arsenal. 

IOWA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 6
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: The Hawkeyes picked up an intriguing prospect in quarterback Austin Vier. He boasts very impressive size at 6-7, 220 pounds, but he didn't put up great numbers as a high school junior. Vier looks like a project who could pay off down the line for Iowa. 

MICHIGAN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 15
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Devin Gardner, wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, wide receiver Ricardo Miller, guard Christian Pace, safety Marvin Robinson
  • Quick take: Michigan continues to add recruits and has started to address the defense after stocking up on offensive skill players. Defensive back Courtney Avery originally committed to Stanford but switched after a recent offer from the Wolverines. The big question will be whether Michigan has both quantity and quality in its class.

MICHIGAN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Defensive end William Gholston, linebacker Max Bullough
  • Quick take: Gholston is a huge get for Michigan State and gives Mark Dantonio an elite defensive prospect from within the state. The cousin of former Ohio State star Vernon Gholston headlined an excellent week for the Spartans, who also added talented cornerback Mylan Hicks. All five commits are from Michigan, continuing a promising trend for the Spartans. 

MINNESOTA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: A quiet week for the Gophers, but more commitments likely are on the way after camps this week. Cornerback Allen Veazie could contribute early in his career. 

NORTHWESTERN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 3
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: The Wildcats finally got on the board and had a big week with three commits, all surprisingly from the South (2 Florida, 1 Louisiana). Running back Shontrelle Johnson looks a lot like Tyrell Sutton on film, and quarterback Trevor Siemian will provide depth behind Evan Watkins. Northwestern is still looking for another quarterback in the class. 

OHIO STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Tackle Andrew Norwell, linebacker Jamel Turner, defensive end David Durham
  • Quick take: It's awfully quiet in Columbus right now. No need to panic, but the Buckeyes didn't end up with William Gholston and are still waiting on quarterback Andrew Hendrix. Expect some action soon for the Buckeyes. 

PENN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Wide receiver Adrian Coxson, running back Silas Redd, center Miles Dieffenbach, defensive end Kyle Baublitz
  • Quick take: Things have slowed down a touch after a busy late-spring push for the Nittany Lions. Dieffenbach and Baublitz are key early commits to fortify the offensive and defensive fronts. 

PURDUE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 1
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Robert Marve (2007 watch list)
  • Quick take: Danny Hope takes a very patient approach toward recruiting and doesn't understand the early offer craze. Still, it will be interesting to see when the Boilermakers land their first high school prospect. Purdue is in the mix for running back Austin White and punter Drew Basil.  

WISCONSIN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 3
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: The Badgers should add a commit or two later this week as they continue a strong in-state recruiting push. 

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

An excellent summer suggestion by reader Derek from New Jersey:

Hey Adam. Is it possible to get a weekly recruiting report around the BigTen? Just who picked up commits at how many were top150.Thanks!

Excellent call, Derek. With Big Ten teams on break or just starting summer workouts, most of the news right now comes on the recruiting trail. I'll post updated scorecards every Monday or Tuesday from now until training camp.

ILLINOIS

  • 2010 verbal commits: 3
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Corey Cooper, quarterback Chandler Whitmer
  • Quick take: My mistake for leaving Whitmer off the watch list the last time. He'll provide a big help to the Illini offense in future years, and he's already helping to recruit some other top prospects to Champaign. Cooper, meanwhile, is still considering some other schools in addition to Illinois.

INDIANA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 1
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: The Hoosiers beat out a number of schools for juco cornerback Andre Kates, a one-time Florida commit who recorded 49 tackles and three interceptions last year.

IOWA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: It's been all defense so far for the Hawkeyes, who are solidifying their front seven with players like linebacker James Morris, who blew up recently at the Nike Camp in Illinois.

MICHIGAN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 13
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Devin Gardner, wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, wide receiver Ricardo Miller, guard Christian Pace, safety Marvin Robinson
  • Quick take: An extended offseason apparently paid off for Rich Rodriguez and his staff, who have put together the Big Ten's strongest recruiting class to this point. Defense should be a bigger focus with the next few commitments.

MICHIGAN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 2
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Linebacker Max Bullough
  • Quick take: Some Spartans fans are a bit concerned about the low number of commits, but Michigan State should be fine, especially if quarterback Robert Bolden or defensive end William Gholston hop on board.

MINNESOTA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Another solid start for head coach Tim Brewster, who got commitments from two in-state prospects (Jimmy Gjere and Lamonte Edwards) and talented Chicago-area wideout Antoine Lewis. The Gophers also are still alive in the Seantrel Henderson sweepstakes.

NORTHWESTERN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 0
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Panic time? Could be getting close to it. But Northwestern can be much more selective than usual with a very small recruiting class for 2010, not to mention Pat Fitzgerald's tendency to redshirt a lot of freshmen.

OHIO STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Tackle Andrew Norwell, linebacker Jamel Turner, defensive end David Durham
  • Quick take: This won't be a huge class for the Buckeyes, and three "watch list" prospects out of five isn't too shabby at all. It has been a while since Scott McVey committed, so expect things to pick up soon.

PENN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 8
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Wide receiver Adrian Coxson, running back Silas Redd, center Miles Dieffenbach, defensive end Kyle Baublitz
  • Quick take: Penn State is pushing Michigan for the Big Ten's top recruiting class thus far, and the recent additions of Dieffenbach, Baublitz and guard Tom Ricketts are very encouraging. JoePa might be off the recruiting trail, but defensive coordinator Tom Bradley and others have done a fabulous job.

PURDUE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 1
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Robert Marve (2007 watch list)
  • Quick take: No high school verbals for the Boilermakers yet, but Marve's decision to transfer could be huge. If Marve can turn a page on his troubles at Miami, he could be Purdue's quarterback of the future beginning in 2010.

WISCONSIN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 3
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: In-state prospect Konrad Zagzebski was an excellent pickup for Wisconsin, which likely will look to add a few defensive backs in the coming months.

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Rich Rodriguez still describes his first December without bowl preparation since 2001 as "miserable."

But the premature end to Michigan's football season didn't completely go to waste.

"Instead of sitting around feeling sorry for yourselves, it did give us time to work and try to identify our needs," Rodriguez told ESPN.com on Wednesday. "We were able to do that pretty quickly."

Recruiting the Class of 2010: Big Ten
Team Total commits Commits on
ESPNU 150 List
Michigan 13 5
Penn State 7 3
Ohio State 5 3
Iowa 5 0
Minnesota 4 0
Illinois 3 2
Wisconsin 3 0
Michigan State 2 1
Purdue 1 1*
Indiana 1 0
Northwestern 0 0
* Miami transfer Robert Marve was a ESPNU 150 selection in 2007.

Rodriguez and his assistants hit the recruiting trail hard, and they're seeing the results pay off right now. Michigan already has 13 commitments for its 2010 recruiting class, six more than any other Big Ten school and eight more than top rival Ohio State.

Of those 13 commitments, five are ranked on the ESPNU 150 Watch List. No other Big Ten team has more than three ESPNU 150 prospects at this point.

After undoubtedly the worst season in team history, Michigan is putting together a pretty solid offseason, highlighted by the quick start to recruiting.

Sure, there have been setbacks, namely more player departures and quarterback Nick Sheridan's broken leg. But spring practice brought some encouraging signs, including the development of freshman quarterback Tate Forcier. Michigan quickly ended its flirtation with Greg Paulus and recruits continue to say yes to Rodriguez and his staff.

"Normally you wouldn't have 12, 13, 14 commitments at this point, but it seems that's more and more the trend," Rodriguez said. "For us, it's just happening. There may be another four or five commitments before the end of summer. I feel comfortable where we're at.

"Our message is getting out. We're filling up pretty quickly."

Michigan doesn't expect to sign a huge class in 2010, so the group could be finalized well before the end of the 2009 season.

Rodriguez partly attributes the fast start to the coaches having a better idea of their needs after going through a season in Ann Arbor. Recruits who watched Michigan trip all over itself last fall also sensed the chance to contribute right away.

"One thing about when you struggle a little bit, young men see opportunity," Rodriguez said. "We've got a lot of offensive skill guys that wanted to jump on board, and that's great. But we've got to make sure we recruit guys for defense. As a head coach and as a staff, we say, 'OK, we really like this guy, but can he help us at this position of need?'

"I wish we had 35 scholarships because we have certain needs and we want to try to build that depth at every position."

Michigan's first four commitments came from wide receivers and the first 10 came from skill players before two linemen joined the class several weeks ago. Quarterback Devin Gardner and wideouts Ricardo Miller and Jeremy Jackson all have been named to the ESPNU 150 Watch List.

"Guys look at the depth chart or they look at where we have less bodies at," said Rodriguez, who cannot discuss specific recruits until they have signed. "They've seen the history of the offense. Whether it's wide receivers or tight ends or running backs or quarterbacks, they all get an opportunity to show their skills."

The recruiting gains are part of what Rodriguez describes as a greater comfort level throughout the program.

While Michigan continues to recruit the South and Southeast hard, assistants are making more inroads in the Midwest to land commitments from players like Gardner (Inkster, Mich.), guard Christian Pace (Avon Lake, Ohio) and defensive end Jordan Paskorz (Allison Park, Pa.). Michigan already has eight commitments from recruits who grew up in Big Ten states. The entire 2009 recruiting classes included only seven.

Rodriguez also sees players settling in better during the offseason. They understand the scheme, and the results from the strength and conditioning program have been more encouraging, Rodriguez said.

Year 2 also has brought less chaos for Rodriguez, who
was still dealing with his ugly departure from West Virginia at this time last year.

"There was a whole lot of drama and things," he said. "We tried to stay focused on our job at hand and not pay too much attention to that, but it did make for a longer year in a lot of ways than I wanted it. But that's all in the past and everybody's moved on.

"We're all eager to prove ourselves."

Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

National Signing Day is less than nine months away, and several Big Ten teams have been collecting commitments for 2010. Here's a look at where each team stands midway through May. 

And if you don't read it already, check out Bill Kurelic's excellent Midwest recruiting blog

ILLINOIS

  • 2010 verbal commits: 3
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Safety Corey Cooper
  • Quick take: Cooper bolsters the Illini secondary, which fell off at the safety spot last year, while Chandler Whitmer provides depth at quarterback. 

INDIANA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 1
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Hoosiers beat out a number of schools for juco cornerback Andre Kates, a one-time Florida commit.

IOWA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 3
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: With starting linebackers Pat Angerer and A.J. Edds set to depart after 2009, Iowa is bolstering the midsection of its defense early on in recruiting. 

MICHIGAN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 10
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Quarterback Devin Gardner, wide receiver Jeremy Jackson, wide receiver Ricardo Miller, safety Marvin Robinson
  • Quick take: Michigan has started 2010 recruiting stronger than any Big Ten team, bolstering several of its skill positions, particularly safety with Robinson. 

MICHIGAN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 2
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Linebacker Max Bullough
  • Quick take: Last year's fast start in recruiting was likely an aberration, and Michigan State is gradually building another strong class with top prospects like Bullough. 

MINNESOTA

  • 2010 verbal commits: 4
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Two in-state prospects (Jimmy Gjere and Lamonte Edwards) further strengthen Minnesota's local presence under head coach Tim Brewster. Keep in mind that February's biggest prize, tackle Seantrel Henderson, is right in the Gophers' backyard. 

NORTHWESTERN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 0
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Slow start is a bit unsettling after such a strong 2009 season, but head coach Pat Fitzgerald appears to be aiming for better prospects this year.

OHIO STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Tackle Andrew Norwell, linebacker Jamel Turner, defensive end David Durham
  • Quick take: A solid start to what figures to be a small to medium-sized recruiting class for Ohio State, which continues to land first-rate offensive linemen like Norwell.

PENN STATE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 5
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: Wide receiver Adrian Coxson, running back Silas Redd
  • Quick take: Maryland pipeline continues with Coxson, a fast and physical wide receiver. Penn State is off to a good start recruiting the skill positions. 

PURDUE

  • 2010 verbal commits: 0
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: Boilers picked up a lot of late commits this year, so no major cause for concern. The addition of Miami transfer Robert Marve at quarterback would be huge. 

WISCONSIN

  • 2010 verbal commits: 2
  • ESPNU 150 Watch List: None
  • Quick take: After a good haul on signing day in February, Wisconsin head coach Bret Bielema needs to follow up with another solid class. In-state prospect Konrad Zagzebski looks like a solid, versatile linebacker.

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