When the call came, John Kelly was intrigued.
“When he came on the phone, he was pretty energetic,” Kelly said. “I know he’s had a busy day, calling a lot of recruits and everything.”
One phone call last week with new Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh was enough for the 2015 Oak Park athlete to remain interested in the Wolverines.
“I don’t know who the defensive backs coach is (but) I know that coach (Fred) Jackson is still the running back coach as of now and I have a pretty good relationship with him,” Kelly said.
If Jackson were to stay on staff, this would be the fifth head coach he worked under at U-M, starting with Gary Moeller in 1992.
Harbaugh told Kelly they wouldn’t force him into one side of the ball as a freshman, allowing him to compete where he wants, but when he got older the coaching staff would tell him where he should play.
“He asked me a couple personal questions about my life and he actually brought my game up,” Kelly said. “I guess coach (Chris) Singletary was telling him about me or showed him some film or something. They were telling me I’m the best overall player in the state, so that’s why they really want to come after me so much.”
Kelly admitted one phone conversation was not enough to get a feel for Harbaugh’s trademark intensity and passion, but the call was enough to reinforce that he’ll be taking an official visit to U-M. Tennessee, Michigan State and Minnesota are also under consideration, and Kelly plans to announce his choice on Signing Day.
“(Harbaugh) seemed like a pretty cool guy,” said Kelly, who added there were no promises about team success only that he would “get Michigan back on track.” “We met pretty much eye-to-eye once we were on the phone talking for a minute. He seemed like a pretty cool coach. I know a lot of people would say he’s pretty tough to play for but I couldn’t tell (that).”