Fourth and One: Michigan Recruiting - talking Wilton Speight, Da'Shawn Hand, and 2015 class

(WXYZ) - Michigan has recruited some of the nation's best classes the last two seasons. In the latest episode of WXYZ's new recruiting show, Brad Galli and ESPN's Tom VanHaaren talk about who's coming next to Ann Arbor.

After a putting on a major display for recruits against Notre Dame, the Wolverines stumbled against Akron, winning 28-24. Next up on the schedule is a primetime trip to UConn, to play the Huskies, with more eyes on Michigan.

In this week's episode of Fourth and One: Michigan Recruiting, Brad and Tom discuss the next quarterback at Michigan, the latest on Da'Shawn Hand, and what to make of the small 2015 class.


First down: The next quarterback
Wilton Speight gets forgotten a bit because of all the attention paid to talented freshman Shane Morris. That's fine with Speight, according to VanHaaren. The 2014 commit from Richmond, Virginia brings Michigan closer and closer to the pro-style offense they want to run. He has a Ryan Mallett-type pocket presence and delivery, and has been fantastic through three weeks of his senior year. Speight has thrown for 12 touchdown passes in those games. As for who we'll be talking about years from now, Speight or Morris, you'll have to watch the video for VanHaaren's answer.

Second down: The latest on Da'Shawn Hand
We've talked about the top prospect every week now, but watch one play from the 2014 defensive end's tape, and you can see why. The Washington Post is following Hand's recruitment and recently released a video from his trip to Michigan. Hand was impressed by his time in Ann Arbor, but now it's time to shift his attention to the SEC. Florida and Alabama are next on his visit list, and as VanHaaren points out, it's interesting to note a month rests in between each trip. Tom still believes Michigan is the leader to land Hand, but the SEC visits are always unpredictable.

Third down: Small, impactful Class of 2015
Because the class of 2013 takes up so much of Michigan's roster, the class of 2015 is one of the team's smallest in a long time. Tom breaks down the numbers of the classes, dating back to 2010, and how they all fit with Brady Hoke's plans. With a small class comes the pressure of landing talent at each spot. The offers haven't been exactly flowing out of Ann Arbor, but the attention sure has.

Fourth down: Another primetime showcase
For the second time in three weeks, Michigan will be on national primetime television, playing against Connecticut at 8pm. The potential positive effect on recruiting is minimal, according to VanHaaren. But the negative impact on a possible second consecutive stumble is there. If Michigan fails to beat UConn in impressive fashion, VanHaaren points out some bad press could hurt recruits' minds about the program.

Extra point: Freshmen on the field
The opportunity to get freshman on the field last week wasn't there, thanks to the near-loss to Akron. The goal this week is to get some of the younger players in the secondary and defensive line on the field against UConn. Honesty is Hoke's selling point in recruiting, but the opportunity to play in non-conference games is certainly part of the plan. With the Big Ten schedule starting in two weeks, this Saturday is one of the last chances to get freshmen on the field.

Each week, we'll return with a new episode. Tweet @BradGalli and @TomVH with players you'd like to hear more about or questions you have.

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