Carter Dunaway came to Ann Arbor on Friday to commit to Jim Harbaugh and Michigan.
Never mind that the tight end won’t start his junior year at Birmingham Brother Rice until the fall or that it took him all of two weeks to say yes to his first major-college scholarship offer.
Harbaugh was pleased but more interested in discussing something else.
“We talked about his cameraman and his Twitter,” Dunaway said of their Friday conversation. “Every day he’s posting these pictures, trying to get a photo album together, 365 days in the year, to create a day-by-day calendar for the team.
(With him,) it definitely is something different. It’s not all straight to the facts. He likes to talk to you and get to know you more.”
Though Harbaugh tweets one of those photos each day – Friday was Day 21 – Dunaway won’t be appearing there anytime soon.
He committed on Friday as the first player in U-M’s 2017 class, so he won’t sign a letter of intent for 22 months but didn’t hesitate to pull the trigger.
The offer came two weeks ago and he quickly knew what he wanted.
“When it happened, I was shocked and I needed to take some time with my family to talk it over,” Dunaway said. “I was always a big Michigan fan, so I knew this is where I was going to end up.”
One thing that wasn’t necessary was an explanation of Michigan’s history.
Dunaway’s father, Craig, was a U-M letterman under Bo Schembechler from 1980-82, crossing paths the last year with redshirting quarterback Jim Harbaugh. This fall, Dunaway’s older brother Jack will be a freshman walk on defense for the Wolverines.
“I didn’t realize that my dad was an actual football player for Michigan,” Dunaway recalled of his younger days. “I couldn’t comprehend the immensity of what he had accomplished. And now I understand.”
At 6-61/2, 233 pounds, Dunaway can set his own path. Harbaugh’s emphasis on NFL-caliber tight ends at Stanford was one of the main selling points for Dunaway.
“What I like about him is he has the ability to catch the ball and accelerate to make a play down the field,” Rice coach Dave Sofran said. “That’ll be one of his best assets, He’s got pretty good speed for his size. His ability to catch the ball is a strength and he’s reliable.”
Though Rice operated more out of a spread formation under current U-M freshman quarterback Alex Malzone last year, they’ll be more pro-style this year, utilizing Dunaway with a new quarterback.
By committing so early, Dunaway essentially skips the entire recruiting process.
“I just wanted to get it done and focus on the high school season,” Dunaway said.
Contact Mark Snyder at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter at @mark__snyder.