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Recruiting primer: 2008

Now that we have a pretty gppd grasp of the 2007 recruiting class, and with very little likely to change there, the 2008 class is moving to the forefront, especially since it is looking to start strong for the Wolverines.

The needs (and some key recruits at the positions) are as follows:
1) OL - Only a couple in the last two classes, with sleepers mixed in. Need some good OTs in this class.
Tex 5* J.B. Shugarts - likes Michigan, but OSU is way up there for Shugarts as well. Can Teas connections sway him to the Maize and Blue?
Grand Haven 4* Dann O'Neill - Instater likes Michigan, and will probably be Blue if offered.
FL 5* Mike Brewster - From Orlando Edgewater (from Greg Mathews's school, and Lorenzo Edwards (florida)).
2) DB - Though there are a few in this class, Michigan's cupboard has shown itself to be bare, in both the OSU game and the Rose Bowl. Some true corners are needed.
Detroit 5* CB Boubacar Cissoko - from the sounds of it he's all but locked up (though we've heard that about Dionte Allen before). Fortunately, he has said he'd like to commit to the Maize nd Blue on this year's signing day, ending his recruitment very early. He might be the top CB in the country next year.
NC 4-5* Robert Blanton - A guy who really likes Michigan, and is from Jamar Adams's high school. He's growing, and might become a safety rather than a CB.
PA 4-5* Jared Holley - He is a good friend of Toney Clemons, and might be one of the top players in ennsylvania next year.
PA 4* Leon Green - More of a hitter than Jared Holley, these two both are from Easton.
CA DBs Robert Bolden and Brandon Wesley - These guys, from Fresno Edison (Johnny Sears) seem like they might be more of fallback guys if UM doesn't land some of the guys ahead of them on the list, but don't be surprised if they eventually earn offers.
NJ 5* S Will Hill - Among the top recruits in the country, Michigan has to compete with a lot of top programs and Rutgers for this guy.
3) LB - Despite a couple in this class, some of them are moving positions, and may not pan out. The only proven quantity, Austin Panter, only has two years of eligibility.
PA 5* LB Shayne Hale - Might be the top player in Pennsylvania this upcoming year. Obviously, it will be hard to pull a Linebacker away from the in-state schools.
Muskegon LB Rickie Crosby - From Terrance Taylor and Ron Johnson's school. Not a speedster (is that what Michigan is looking for?)
4) DT - The depth there is pretty good right now, but a couple of key players will be departed by the time these players ever see the field.
IN 3-4* Steven Barnett - From Jerimy Finch's high school, Indianapolis Warren Central.
5) DE - The depth here is not so good, even with Brandon Graham moving down from LB. We'll have to see if some younger guys step up.
6) RB - Time for a great one to step in for the players that will be departing soon.
Tex 5* Sam McGuffie - The human highlight reel - white edition - reportedly loves UM, and has family in the SE Michigan area. Ryan Mallett has been working him hard. Reports have him potentially commiting to the good guys early.
CA RB Darrell Scott - He might be the top RB in the nation, but Michigan seems to be focused on McGuffie, and might not want to spend too much effort on a guy that will be everyone else's top target.
7) WR - A lot of WR's in the '07 class, but this is a really strong year for wide receivers, so Michigan might land a couple.
PA 4-5* Jon Baldwin - Reportedly likes UM, might make an early decision.
Ann Arbor 3-4* Daryl Gooden - From Huron High School. He is in the area, but will we want to leave? Will Michigan offer more than a couple of WRs?
8) QB - Not in any way imperative, need someone who is willing to be a (capable) career backup to Mallett.
Lake Orion QB Chris Lum - Top instate QB, more athletic than Michigan has in stock (other than Forcier)
Marine City QB Brendon Kay - Likely Mac-level or career backup in the Big Ten (which is what UM is looking for, anyway)
9) TE - With two in the last class, and Carson Butler only a redshirt freshman, there should be plenty of depth here for now. Probably won't take one in this class.
Novi TE Tyler Hoover - Again, not a huge need, but this instater loves Michigan.

This list is far from all-inclusive, as I am far from an insider. Information garnered from Jim Stefani and Scout.com.

“Recruiting primer: 2008”