Last summer, Rockford kicker Quinn Nordin created some national buzz when he committed to Penn State in an elaborate video involving a private plane.
But it was Michigan and its high-flying, swashbuckling recruiter of a coach, Jim Harbaugh, who ultimately landed the nation’s No. 1-ranked kicker.
Nordin, who also was considering Southern Cal, announced this morning at his home that he would attend Michigan. Nordin has said that he expects to compete with fifth-year senior Kenny Allen for the kicking job this fall.
Nordin, 6-feet-2 and 205 pounds, has trained at the Kornblue Kicking camp in Florida, where he has nailed a 65-yard field goal on video and has had impressive distances on his kickoffs.
Penn State made a verbal scholarship offer to Nordin in January 2015. In July, Nordin made a video of himself on a plane announcing his commitment to the Nittany Lions.
But then Harbaugh entered the picture and one-upped his own recruit last month. On Jan. 15, Harbaugh spent the night in a sleepover at Nordin’s home. Harbaugh went to school with Nordin the next day and then drove Nordin to Ann Arbor for his visit.
Harbaugh made Nordin his special project after Michigan special teams coach John Baxter, who initially had recruited Nordin, left for USC on Jan. 7.
“Ever since then, me and him are making a really good relationship,” Nordin told the Free Press last month, adding that they probably had spoken 20 times since then, with Nordin initiating the calls. “He’s an awesome guy. He’s very serious about what he does and he gets the best out of each and every one of his players.”
Penn State was still thought to be in the mix, even though Nordin decommitted Jan. 27, after Georgia kicker Alex Barbir committed to the Nittany Lions.
Even with Baxter on USC’s staff, the Trojans were considered longshots to land Nordin, who took his official visit to the Los Angeles campus the final weekend in January.