Michigan has two talented defensive backs already committed in the 2015 class. Garrett Taylor is a four-star recruit out of Richmond (Va.) St. Christopher’s. The 6-foot-1, 188-pounder is the No. 6 cornerback and No. 48 overall player nationally. Tyree Kinnel is a four-star recruit from Huber Heights (Ohio) Wayne. The 6-foot, 197-pounder is the No. 11 safety and No. 197 overall player nationally.
Earlier this summer, Michigan’s defensive backfield looked set in the class. Lakewood (Ohio) St. Edward four-star corner Shaun Crawford rounded out a very strong three-man group. Another defensive back would have been a luxury, not a necessity. However, Crawford defected to join Notre Dame’s class, and now Michigan needs a third DB in the class.
Three prospects have emerged from the pack to be the most likely to join the Wolverines’ class. Five-star Iman Marshall and four-star recruits Marcus Lewis and Mook Reynolds are realistic possibilities for U-M.
Marshall, the No. 3 prospect in the country, is a 6-1, 194-pounder from national powerhouse program Long Beach (Calif.) Poly. He will take an official visit to Michigan (along with trips to Notre Dame, Florida State and LSU, along with either Oklahoma or Texas. Michigan seems like a longshot (especially with local programs UCLA and USC still in play), but has a chance with the visit in the works.
Lewis, the No. 90 prospect and No. 7 corner in the country, decommitted from Florida after an unofficial visit to Michigan this summer. Miami and Oregon are also in the mix for the product of Washington (D.C.) Gonzaga, along with the Wolverines and Gators. He will visit for the Penn State game Oct. 11, as will Reynolds, the No. 247 overall player and No. 29 cornerback nationally. Things are a bit more complicated for the standout from Greensboro (N.C.) Northern Guilford, who is currently committed to Virginia Tech, but will see Ole Miss in addition to Michigan and VT before finalizing his choice.
While Michigan fans were upset after losing Crawford, some of the options — including perhaps the most likely one in Lewis — to replace him are even more highly ranked. Taking care of business on the field should help U-M continue the run of recent successes on the recruiting trail, and defensive back is one position at which the Wolverines are poised to make some noise.
Tim Sullivan is the Football Recruiting Editor of The Wolverine magazine and TheWolverine.com. He is also a contributor to national football recruiting coverage on the Rivals.com network. You can follow him on Twitter @TimS_Wolverine.