The Michigan Wolverines have already lost one verbal commitment from their 2013 recruiting class as a result of 4-star guard David Dawson's desire to visit other schools, and ESPN 150 cornerback Gareon Conley (Massillon, Ohio) may become the second recruit to take additional visits.
That would put his scholarship offer from Brady Hoke in jeopardy.
Conley thought about making an unofficial visit to the University of Cincinnati earlier this month, but the Under Armour All-American cancelled the trip after Michigan's staff reportedly told him he would no longer have an offer from the Wolverines if he chose to visit other schools.
Michigan's chances at hanging onto Conley took a hit last Monday when the Ohio State Buckeyes extended a scholarship offer to the nation's No. 61 overall prospect and No. 9 ranked cornerback:
— Brad Bournival (@bbournival) October 22, 2012
The bad news kept on coming for Michigan fans over the weekend.
Conley told multiple reporters after Massillon Washington High School's 37-28 victory over Canton McKinley High School last Saturday:
Gareon Conley tells me he will visit Ohio State and Oregon.
— Bill Greene (@BillBankGreene) October 27, 2012
Conley wants to talk things over with Michigan's coaches and decide whether or not the desire to take other visits outweighs his verbal commitment to the Wolverines before anything becomes official.
"I haven't talked to them in a while," Conley told Josh Helmholdt of Rivals.com. "But I've got to talk to them about it."
Nothing is likely to come of this for at least a couple of weeks, as Massillon Washington will be playing in the state playoffs.
Conley was quoted as saying "his team's season is his first priority, not recruiting."
Although it is never good to see prospects alter their original commitments, Dawson's recent decommitment and the ongoing drama surrounding Conley should not irk Michigan fans. It is simply an adverse effect of the staff's no-visit policy, which benefits the Wolverines recruits more than it hurts them.
Michigan parted ways with 4-star tight end Pharaoh Brown (Lyndhurst, Ore.) from their 2012 class after the Brush High School standout opted to visit the Oregon Ducks. The Wolverines are not exactly hurting at that position, with true freshmen A.J. Williams and Devin Funchess producing this season.
The same should be true this year.
The Wolverines already have three other cornerbacks committed, though the staff would prefer to hang onto Conley since he is a taller defensive back at 6'1".
If Conley does wind up decommitting from Michigan, expect the Wolverines to begin recruiting Leon McQuay III (Seffner, Fla.) heavily.
Interest on McQuay's side cooled over the summer when the Wolverines added unknown 2-star defensive back Channing Stribling (Matthews, N.C.) to their start-studded 2013 recruiting haul, giving Michigan a total of four cornerback commits.
McQuay will use one of his five official visits to come to Ann Arbor to see the Wolverines take on the Northwestern Wildcats on Nov. 10th.
Michigan has a lot of ground to make up on the Florida State Seminoles, Vanderbilt Commodores and USC Trojans in the battle for McQuay. Even an outstanding trip to the Big House may not get the Wolverines back into the mix.
Stay tuned in the coming weeks for updates on Conley's and McQuay's recruitments.
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