Feb. 1, 2017
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- A pair of five-star athletes and eight top-ranked players in their respective states led a class of 29 student-athletes who signed National Letters of Intent to join the University of Michigan football program on Wednesday (Feb. 1). The Wolverines' 2017 signing class is projected by 247's composite national recruiting service to finish the signing period as the No. 5-ranked signing day class once all rankings are finalized later Wednesday, and the unit is almost unanimously recognized as a top-five class.
According to 247Sports, which uses a composite ranking system compiling measurements from the top recruiting services, this unit ranks as Michigan's highest-rated class in the modern recruiting services era (since 2000) with respect to total points. Overall, the class features an average player rating of .9155, the highest average in modern U-M history.
The announcements for many of the Class of 2017 signees were made during the "Signing of the Stars" event at Crisler Center, a celebration of these future Wolverines to benefit the University of Michigan Health System (UMHS). Harbaugh and a variety of sports figures central to the Michigan Athletics community introduced the student-athletes who signed NLIs to attend U-M and don the winged helmet this fall.
This year's class includes 11 early enrollees already attending classes at the University of Michigan: wide receiver Tarik Black, offensive lineman Ja'Raymond Hall, defensive tackle Donovan Jeter, defensive back Jaylen Kelly-Powell, defensive end Corey Malone-Hatcher, linebacker Ben Mason, wide receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones, offensive lineman Cesar Ruiz, and defensive backs Benjamin St-Juste, J'Marick Woods and Ambry Thomas.
Michigan added a pair of 247Sports five-star prospects today: Peoples-Jones and Solomon, and U-M signed a total of 19 four-star prospects according to 247Sports Composite rankings, adding eight three-star athletes as well.
Peoples-Jones, hailed as the top wide receiver by two of three lead recruiting services, and Solomon, a consensus top defensive lineman among the nation's best players overall, are the five-star athletes headlining a group of 18 total Wolverines listed among the ESPN300.
Note: Brad Robbins, a punter from Westerville, Ohio, joined the group when he signed his NLI Feb. 6.
2017 Michigan Football Signees
As of 5 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 6
* Enrolled at Michigan in January
Click on player name for bio
|Name||Pos.||Ht.||Wt.||Hometown (High School)||Coach|
|Jordan Anthony||LB||6-0||235||Silver Spring, Md. (IMG Academy, Fla.)||Kevin Wright|
|Tarik Black*||WR||6-4||206||Hamden, Conn. (Cheshire Academy)||David Dykeman|
|Nico Collins||WR||6-4||201||Birmingham, Ala. (Clay-Chalkville)||Jerry Hood|
|Chuck Filiaga||OL||6-6||340||Aledo, Texas (Aledo)||Steve Wood|
|Ja'Raymond Hall*||OL||6-5||272||Detroit, Mich. (Oak Park)||Greg Carter|
|Brad Hawkins||WR||6-2||205||Camden, N.J. (Suffield Academy, Conn.)||Drew Gamere|
|Joel Honigford||OL||6-6||273||Sugarcreek, Ohio (Garaway)||Jason Wallick|
|James Hudson||DE||6-5||294||Toledo, Ohio (Central Catholic)||Greg Dempsey|
|Deron Irving-Bey||DE||6-5||271||Flint, Mich. (Southwestern Academy)||Chane Clingman|
|Donovan Jeter*||DT||6-3||260||Beaver Falls, Pa. (Beaver Falls)||Ryan Matsook|
|Jaylen Kelly-Powell*||DB||6-0||175||Detroit, Mich. (Cass Technical)||Thomas Wilcher|
|Corey Malone-Hatcher*||DE||6-3||245||St. Joseph, Mich. (St. Joseph)||Gandalf Church|
|Oliver Martin||WR||6-1||189||Coralville, Iowa (West Senior)||Garrett Hartwig|
|Ben Mason*||LB||6-3||247||Newtown, Conn. (Newtown)||Steve George|
|Dylan McCaffrey||QB||6-5||197||Castle Rock, Colo. (Valor Christian)||Rod Sherman|
|Phillip Paea||DL||6-4||280||Berrien Spring, Mich. (Berrien Springs)||Bill Bergan|
|Kwity Paye||DE||6-4||234||Providence, R.I. (Bishop Hendricken)||Keith Croft|
|Donovan Peoples-Jones*||WR||6-2||190||Southfield, Mich. (Cass Technical)||Thomas Wilcher|
|Brad Robbins||P||6-2||180||Westerville, Ohio (Westerville South)||Kyle Stout|
|Josh Ross||LB||6-2||221||Southfield, Mich. (St. Mary's Preparatory)||George Porritt|
|Cesar Ruiz*||OL||6-4||336||Camden, N.J. (IMG Academy, Fla.)||Kevin Wright|
|Benjamin St-Juste*||DB||6-3||188||Rosemere, Quebec (Cegep du Vieux Montreal)||Cherif Nicolas|
|O'Maury Samuels||RB||5-10||192||Los Lunas, N.M. (Los Lunas)||Terrell Trantham|
|Drew Singleton||LB||6-2||213||Union, N.J. (Paramus Catholic)||Dan Sabella|
|Aubrey Solomon||DL||6-3||305||Leesburg, Ga. (Lee County)||Dean Fabrizio|
|Andrew Stueber||OL||6-7||290||Darien, Conn. (Darien)||Rob Trifone|
|Kurt Taylor||RB||5-8||197||Covington, Ga. (Grayson)||Jeff Herron|
|Ambry Thomas*||DB||6-0||170||Detroit, Mich. (Martin Luther King)||Tyrone Spencer|
|Luiji Vilain||DE||6-4||238||Ottawa, Ontario (Episcopal, Virginia)||Panos Voulgaris|
|J'Marick Woods*||DB||6-3||205||Florence, Ala. (Florence)||Jason Wallace|
This year's class ranks as Michigan's best in the modern recruiting services era (since 2000), with the highest point total of any U-M signing class in that time span. The average athlete rating of .9155 on a 1.000-point scale also ranks as the best for Michigan in the modern recruiting services era.
The 21 four- or five-star athletes who are part of this year's class rank second only to Alabama's 24.
Nationally recognized athletes include six U.S. Army All-American Game Participants (Black, Martin, McCaffrey, Peoples-Jones, Solomon, Thomas), five Under Armour All-Americans (Kelly-Powell, Peoples-Jones, Ruiz, Singleton, Villain) and one Semper Fidelis All-American (Hawkins).
The Wolverines will also add four other athletes who are ranked No. 1 or among the top-ranked players in their respective states: Aubrey Solomon (Georgia), O'Maury Samuels (New Mexico), Drew Singleton (New Jersey) and Kwity Paye (Rhode Island).
The offensive breakdown by position includes: quarterback (1), wide receiver (5), running back (2), offensive line (4) and punter (1).
The defensive breakdown by position includes: defensive line (10), defensive back (4) and linebacker (4).
This year's class of signees represent 13 different states, plus Canada: Alabama (2), Canada (2), Connecticut (3), Colorado (1), Georgia (2), Iowa (1), Maryland (1), Michigan (8), New Jersey (3), New Mexico (1), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (1), Rhode Island (1) and Texas (1).