Michigan Needs to Go After 4-Star ATH John Smith

By Tyler Waddell
Kim Klement – USA Today Sports

Even though the Michigan Wolverines finished with the fifth-best recruiting class for 2013 (247Sports), coach Brady Hoke is already on the hunt for more prospects that will potentially help him get to a BCS bowl and beyond.

With 2012 in the books, it’s clear that Michigan is in desperate need of playmakers at the wide receiver position to get to that next level. No player had 50 catches last season, and the team leader in average yards per catch–Roy Roundtree–is graduating.

Depth is a huge issue at this position for the Wolverines, which is why Hoke dipped into the recruiting pool this past off-season to acquire three wide receivers – all from either Michigan or Ohio.

While these incoming freshmen show some raw talent, none make you take a second look. That’s why Hoke needs to get a commitment from Long Beach (CA) ATH John “Juju” Smith from the class of 2014.

For those who don’t know, a player with the “ATH” designation is someone who is yet to be assigned a position, but is classified as a general athlete.

A four-star prospect (Rivals), Smith is an extremely versatile athlete that is capable of playing either receiver or safety at the collegiate level. Although the staff is recruiting him as a defender right now, I believe they’ll find out sooner or later that he will be needed on the offensive side of the ball.

In terms of depth, the Wolverines are stacked in the secondary. Smith would give them a viable option as a go-to pass-catcher from the second he steps on campus.

Michigan is not at the top of the list for Smith, but he is interested in taking an official visit to Ann Arbor sometime soon. Hoke needs to act fast to keep Smith away from the Pac-12 and to show just how much he wants – and needs – him to join his receiver corps.

Not to mention to keep up with Urban Meyer and the Ohio State Buckeyes, who signed a plethora of big-time playmakers on National Signing Day.

Smith also holds offers from the Arizona Wildcats, Fresno State Bulldogs, San Jose State Spartans, UCLA Bruins, USC Trojans, Washington Huskies and Washington State Cougars.

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