Ask any recruiter what his first goal is for recruiting a top-notch prospect, and the answer's always the same: "Just get him on campus." If he's there, he's listening, and what happens there matters considerably more than anything that could go on a postcard or in a letter, handwritten or not.
So with that, rejoice Michigan fans: Da'Shawn Hand will be on campus.
As reported by ESPN.com's WolverineNation and also by AnnArbor.com, Hand is set for a visit on the weekend of March 16 and 17, when Michigan begins their spring practices. So he'll get his first look at the town, the school and the coaches. You can surmise that Michigan is happy about this development. Just get him on campus.
Hand, you'll recall, has been targeted by 2014 Michigan commit (and tireless recruiter) Michael Ferns. Ferns specifically mentioned Hand's interest in engineering as a major, so the fact that Hand is interested in pursuing a major of substance (and not, you know...communications) means that Michigan should be an even more attractive target.
This isn't Hand's first rodeo, either; he was in Columbus for the Michigan vs. Ohio State game in November, and per 247Sports.com, he's also been to Alabama, West Virginia, Virginia Tech and other schools on unofficial visits already. So no matter how much Hand likes Ann Arbor, don't expect him to be starry-eyed and oohing the entire time he's there.
With that, we're probably a long way off from Hand committing to Michigan or anywhere else. He's the most highly-decorated prospect in the 2014 class. He's going to get calls from the best programs in the nation daily regardless of whether he's committed anywhere or not.
He's a game-changer of a recruit for anyone—even Alabama—so he's going to be hearing a lot of pitches and promises from a lot of schools for the next 11 months. He's also going to have an entire season's worth of football in 2013 to keep evaluating these potential destinations before he has to sign on the dotted line. This is a long haul.
But hey—Michigan's getting him on campus.