What Derrick Green Commitment Means for Michigan Football
Derrick Green (via Rivals.com)
Coach Brady Hoke and the Michigan Wolverines have landed the top running back recruit in the nation, according to Rivals, in Derrick Green.
Michigan fans always cheer for the Maize and Blue, but now they will cheer for Green in the fall.
Green is expected to have an immediate impact on the field as Michigan makes the shift to the pro-style offense. The number one ranked running back is the center piece of Hoke's strongest recruiting class.
However, Green's commitment has deep implications that extend beyond adding an impact player to the Wolverines offense.
1. Michigan Gets Back to the Pro-Style Offense
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Ever since Lloyd Carr stepped down as head coach of the Wolverines, Michigan has run a spread offense. With former coach Rich Rodriguez's recruits, Brady Hoke and offensive coordinator Al Borges were forced to utilize the speed skill set of their players in a spread offense.
But, Brady Hoke is a man of 1990s traditional Michigan football. Michigan's iconic offenses featured big, burly offensive lines with an under-center pro-style quarterback, and a powerful feature back lining up behind the offense.
Now, that Michigan offense is back.
Derrick Green is the key piece in the revival of the Wolverines power, pro-style offense.
Green is a feature back with all of the intangibles to be a true pro-style running back.
He is the perfect size at 6'0" 220 lbs., a great combination of compact size and power. But, Green also has the ability to run off the tackle and make moves in the open field thanks to his 4.4 second 40-yard dash speed.
According to ESPN's scouting report, "Green is quick to get downhill and attack the hole and he gains momentum fast."
ESPN also says, "[Green] is at his best when squared up and given a heavy dose of Iso and Power plays."
With a pro-style running game mainly consisting of Iso and Power runs off of the offensive guards and tackles, Green will be squaring up as a north-south runner.
ESPN says Green's ideal situation is to have "a downhill, heavy power-running offense at the next level that can feed this north-south workhorse the ball."
Green will be that workhorse for the Michigan offense.
Michigan's focus on reestablishing the pro-style offense sets Green up to become a key part of the game plan and showcase his skills as a power running back.
Green's commitment means Michigan will have their traditional Big Ten power running, pro-style offense back at full strength.
2. Michigan Regains Its Recruiting Prowess
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
Up until Rich Rodriguez took over the Michigan Wolverines in 2008, the Wolverines were a college football powerhouse in regards to winning and recruiting. Michigan and Ohio State were the premier schools for high school football stars to attend when looking for a Big Ten program.
Both Michigan and Ohio State dropped off in recent years. With the Buckeyes hiring Urban Meyer, their recruiting abilities are back since Meyer is a proven coach on the national scale.
Hoke has worked very hard to bring Michigan back and with the Derrick Green commitment, he has accomplished his goal.
Michigan is relevant in recruiting again.
According Kyle Meinke of MLive, "Green is Michigan's highest-rated tailback since the dawn of the modern recruiting era in 2002".
Meinke also says, "Green is Michigan's highest-rated overall commit since 2007, when quarterback Ryan Mallett (Texarkana, Texas) was the No. 4 player according to Rivals and No. 5 according to Scout."
When a school, especially one as renowned as Michigan, hauls in an elite recruit, it can set off the waves to bring in more recruits for the future.
Green has shown to the entire country that Hoke has brought the Wolverines back to prominence by bringing in the nation's top running back. When one star recruit commits, others will fall into place as a domino effect.
Michigan is already bringing in one of the nation's best recruiting classes. Scout.com ranks Michigan's recruiting class, with the addition of Green, as number one in the country.
These players now need to perform on the field, but the Michigan Wolverines are back as a recruiting powerhouse thanks to the addition of Derrick Green to their already stellar recruiting class.
The University of Michigan football program has the most wins in Division I history. Green's commitment marks its return to being an elite program for recruits.
3. Michigan Has a Potential Star in the Backfield
Derrick Green (via Rivals.com)
Michigan has not had a star running back since Mike Hart left in 2007.
The Wolverines have had a long list of elite running backs don the winged helmet. Names like Anthony Thomas, Chris Perry, Tim Biakabutuka and Tyrone Wheatley still linger as legends at the University of Michigan.
Derrick Green has the potential to add his name to that list.
Green fits the mold of the perfect Michigan running back.
He will need to practice hard to earn the starting job in the offense as a freshman, but after his freshman year it will be Green's backfield.
Green has the potential to eclipse Hart's school record of 5,040 career rushing yards.
The Wolverines grew used to seeing quarterback Denard Robinson tear apart defenses with his feet, but now with a traditional Michigan power running back, the Wolverines can consistently pound away at defenses.
Michigan has not had this much hype surrounding a recruit in years, but Derrick Green is the real deal right now. His commitment means Michigan has the recruiting talent to put a star running back on the field.
Green has the size, talent, and mental toughness to become one of the best backs in school history.
Now he has to put it all out there on the field and produce.
Green's commitment means Michigan has their centerpiece for the pro-style offense, regained their status as a recruiting powerhouse, and that Green can be the star of it all.