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Vincent Smith & Brandin Hawthorne Go Blue

Pahokee, FL teammates Vincent Smith and Brandin Hawthorne have both announced their intentions to sign letters of intent to Michigan in February. The duo announced their respective decisions today, instead of their original plan, which had them announcing at their team's game against Olive Branch (MS) tomorrow. Smith is a 5-9, 170-lb running back, and Hawthorne is a 6-0, 185-lb linebacker who boasts a 4.7 40-yard dash.

Recruiting Notes
Michigan fans first became aware of Pahokee High School when slot receiver Martavious Odoms joined the class of 2008 in February. They quickly learned of Odoms's younger teammates, including WR Nu'Keese Richardson (Florida commit) and Smith and Hawthorne. Smith was the first of the two added to the board, when he reported in March that he was about to receive a Michigan offer. That offer became public in June, and Hawthorne was added to the recruiting board shortly thereafter, when he placed Michigan in his top two, despite not reporting an offer. In early July, Brandin stated that he wouldn't make a school decision until after he had taken his official visits. However, in the middle of July, both he and Smith stated that they would announce their college decisions on August 30th at their game against Olive Branch. At the end of July, the duo started dropping none-too-subtle hints that Michigan would be the choice for both Blue Devils. Towards the end of August, both Hawthorne and Smith announced that they had set up 5 official visits, though they still planned to announce on August 30th (an announcement that they subsequently moved forward by one day). With the final choice of Michigan, it is unlikely that they will have spots reserved for them in the class if they still intend to take officials to schools other than Michigan. The runners-up for Smith were Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Tennessee. finishing in second for Hawthorne was Louisville.

Player Notes
Both players may be considered slightly undersized for their positions, though Rich Rodriguez has focused on adding speed to the team first, and will likely worry about size and speed in future classes. Smith projects as yet another RB/Slot combo, with his diminutive stature and decent quickness. Hawthorne is probably going to end up as a weakside linebacker unless he has a pretty significant growth spurt. He will have to add a ton of mass to play linebacker, and hopefully he won't lose too much speed doing so in Mike Barwis's program.


Pahokee's spring game, courtesy of our friends at SoFLAFootball.com. Unfortunately, the video quality is a little too low to get any great detail.

The Vincent Smith Story from PrepTicket.

With a pipeline to Pahokee High School now firmly established, Michigan is likely to go after Doral Willis, a top defensive tackle/offensive line prospect in the class of 2010. In addition, Nu'Keese Richardson, who liked Michigan early in the process but is a Florida commit, has expressed interest in visiting Ann Arbor with Smith and Hawthorne this year. Both Smith and Hawthorne have stated that plan to enroll at Michigan in January.

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“Vincent Smith & Brandin Hawthorne Go Blue”

  1. Anonymous Anonymous Says:

    Great pick-ups for us. I find it funny that I almost get more excited about a lot of these three-star undersized types that we have been getting this last year than I do for some of these four and five star guys we are after. More often than not we know what to expect from players like Campbell, McNeal, Stonum, and Cissoko, but a lot of these three-star hybrid type players are more often than not going to be the gamebreakers.

    Mike Hart was a three-star, DE George Selvie from South Florida was a two-star and he is likely the top DE in the nation, and Sam Bradford was a three-star who looks poised to be the best QB in Oklahoma history.

    These types of kids, the overlooked, under-sized, the ones who aren't thought to be of big school caliber are some of the most amazing players to watch because they are even more determined and driven to work hard and play hard in order to make up for what they "lack".

    Let's hope for a great season, good luck boys, and Go Blue!

  2. Blogger Paul Says:

    Yes... but for every Mike Hart or David Harris (blessed be his name) there are 10 - 15 Mark Huyge's. I'd rather get a class full of high floor, medium ceiling guys than a bunch of gambles.