Midwest: Breaking Down Recent Commitments

Ben Gedeon

Thoughts on the latest commitments from around the Midwest and what they bring to the table.

Ben Gedeon
Linebacker | Hudson (Ohio) | Committed to Michigan

Recruitment: The Wolverines offered Gedeon (6'3, 215-lbs) last summer after seeing him perform at their camp and jumped out to an early lead in his recruitment which continued even as he pulled in offers from programs like Ohio State, Michigan State, Stanford, Tennessee, Boston College and others.

Analysis: He's an athletic kid who has played all over the field. His ability to run with the ball in the open field and catch the ball on offense show what kind of athlete the Wolverines are getting. He's going to be able to run to the football and drop into coverage. His team made a nice playoff run last year, but he does not consistently play against top level competition, so he will have more of an adjustment at the college level. That said, he has all of the tools you look for and given the Wolverines' previous linebacker class, he is not a kid who is likely to be pressed into service right away.

Rankings/Final Word: I think we have him ranked fairly right now as a mid 4-star and the 10th best player in Ohio. Anything can happen as far as movement up or down depending on his season, but because of his commitment, it is not likely we will see him at many camps this summer.

Derrick Willies
Wide Receiver | Rock Island (Ill.) | Committed to Iowa

Recruitment: Willies had a big season at Burlington High School in Iowa, but transferred to Rock Island and came on the radar a little bit later, but quickly added offers from programs like Northern Illinois and Iowa State. His Iowa offer was fairly recent, but it did not take him long to accept the Hawkeye offer.

Analysis: Willies is a big target at 6'3, 190-lbs. At that size though, he is still capable of making plays after the catch, as he took his share of short passes for long gains last season. He's an outstanding hurdler and has good speed and athleticism for a kid with his frame. He's still a little on the raw side and can improve his route running, but he has a great skill set and he's also a physical, willing blocker. For a big guy, we didn't see him thrown a lot of jump balls, so it's hard to say if that's something he has in his arsenal at this point in time.

Rankings/Final Word: Tall, long strider and a standout on the track, all good qualities to have in a wide receiver. Willies is currently unranked, but should be a high three-star in the upcoming update.

Cameron Dillard
Offensive Lineman | Canton (Mich) | Committed to Florida

Recruitment: Dillard got hot over the winter and early spring, adding many offers including Oregon, Arkansas, Clemson, Virginia Tech and others, but his spring game experience at Florida last weekend was too good to pass up.

Analysis: Dillard is a pancake machine who regularly buries whoever is across from him. Playing in a run heavy system, the biggest thing he will have to work on is his pass protection, something he is doing in the offseason. A high school tackle, we have Dillard ranked as a guard, and Florida may play him at center and that could be a great spot for him. He's physical, plays hard and is a strong kid and we know he will do very well as a run blocker, and he's working to add in the pass blocking side of things.

Rankings/Final Word: Right now, Dillard is a solid 3-star and one of the top 15 prospects in the state of Michigan. Continued improvement in his pass blocking should improve his ranking, but regardless, he has found a good home and center is a position he can have a lot of success at.

David Kenney
Defensive End | Indianapolis Pike (Ind.) | Committed to Iowa

Recruitment: Iowa was the first to offer and while Louisville, Indiana, Purdue and others jumped in, Kenney remembered who was first and chose the Hawkeyes last week.

Analysis: When I first saw Kenney he was the size of an outside linebacker, but he grew into his body, filled out, and now is a thicker kid at 6'3, 255-lbs. He may end up going inside to tackle even, but given his ability to get off the ball and rush the passer, I see him at end initially. He's agile, quick, and has good closing speed. He's a high motor kid who pursues the football and is consistently disruptive.

Rankings/Final Word: A Scout 300 member, Kenney is currently a 3-star, but will be elevated to a four once the full complement of four stars is added.

Corey Willis
Wide Receiver | Holland (Mich.) | Committed to Central Michigan

Recruitment: Willis had an outstanding junior season as a quarterback, prompting offers from Central Michigan and Western Michigan as an athlete/wide receiver or cornerback.

Analysis: I think schools wanted to see Willis in person work out as a corner or receiver this summer, so it was good for CMU to get him locked up this early. He's a great athlete with outstanding open field elusiveness and a general knack for finding creases and making plays. Teams geared up to stop him last year and still couldn't do it. The question is, how will he handle the little things at receiver? How are his hands? How is his route running? How is his blocking? All those things remain unknown, but what is known is that if you put the ball in his hands enough times, he'll put points on the scoreboard.

Rankings/Final Word: Currently unranked, Willis should be a 3-star and a top 25 player in the state of Michigan when rankings expand.

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