Rockford offensive tackle Ben Braden was one of seven Michigan commitments to make Detroit Free…
Signing Day Capsule: Ben Braden
Offensive Tackle 6-6/319
Rockford HS (Rockford, MI)
NR: *** - Position Rank: 41
Scout.com Player Video
GBW Michigan HS Dream Team Video –
Game Highlights –
His Recruiting Story
With a new football coaching staff, and a new focus on dominating the in-state recruiting landscape, it's only fitting that Braden, from Rockford, Mich., would be Brady Hoke's first commitment with the Maize and Blue. Ben turned heads both on the field during his junior season, and during camps leading up to his final prep season. During Michigan's underclassman camp, though he was a sophomore playing both defensive end and tight end, he performed at the offensive tackle position during 1-on-1s and showed well. His blocking strength at the point of attack and quickness in pass protection allowed his high school team to compile 4,343 yards of total offense on the way to the 2010 Michigan semifinals. Braden followed that with a 2011 season in which the Rams averaged over 220 yards rushing per game, and, once again, a deep run into the MHSAA playoffs. Though he ended his recruitment early Ben had offers and attention from Michigan State, Wisconsin, and Syracuse. His play in his senior year also led to his selection to the All-State Dream Team.
His Commitment Comments
"I really like the coaching staff. Brady Hoke is definitely a very stand up guy. He's a players' coach. He really looks out for his guys, and that's something I didn't feel as strong as with the other guys."
Ben is an aggressive, hard-nosed blocker that uses leverage well. Though he has the athleticism to play the tackle position, he may very well end up at guard where his strength as a run-blocker can be on display. In his high school career he played both sides of the offensive line, and most scouts were impressed with his pulling ability. He could use a more developed mean streak on the field. He shows good technique. He plays with good hand placement and overall footwork. I think he'll need to show he's quick enough for pass protection at tackle, specifically against speed rushers, but I also think he could be an excellent collegiate guard - Allen Trieu.
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