2015 College Football Recruits with Strong Interest in Both Michigan, Ohio State

Edwin WeathersbyAnalyst IMarch 20, 2014

2015 College Football Recruits with Strong Interest in Both Michigan, Ohio State

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    Michigan and Ohio State are fierce rivals not just on the field, but also on the recruiting trail. With both schools being in the same conference and region, they routinely find themselves battling for the same recruits.

    The arms race between both schools is always fun to watch. This year will be no different, as there are several recruits who have strong interest in both powerhouses.

    The Buckeyes are trying to take a 5-star running back from Michigan's clutches, while Big Blue is trying to top Ohio State for a big offensive lineman from Pennsylvania. Both schools also have their sights set on a 5-star linebacker.

    All recruiting ratings and rankings are from 247Sports.
    Player evaluations are based on review of tape at Scout.comRivals and 247Sports.

Grant Newsome, OL

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    Credit: 247Sports

    Hailing from New Jersey, Grant Newsome is an interesting offensive line prospect. He appears to be great in a straight line, as he displays explosive athleticism in short areas.

    However, Newsome isn't the most fluid-looking blocker when rocking back into his pass-sets. The 6'6", 280-pounder has good strength to sustain blocks, plus he can reach linebackers directly in his track as a run-blocker.

    Playing right tackle in college is possible for Newsome, but the 4-star prospect could be a great guard. Michigan and Ohio State are racing with schools such as LSU, Penn State and North Carolina, per 247Sports.

Michael Weber, RB

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    Credit: 247Sports

    Cass Technical in Detroit is one of the better high school programs in the country, and this year one of its top players is 4-star running back Michael Weber.

    At 5'10" and 205 pounds, the quick-footed runner has deceptive strength and good toughness coming through the hole. Weber can pick and stab behind the line of scrimmage due to having light feet, and he exhibits terrific explosion through the crease to get upfield.

    He would be a great fit in a single-back offense. Ohio State, Michigan and Michigan State are among his top schools, says 247Sports.

Brian Cole, WR

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    Credit: 247Sports

    At 6'2" and 190 pounds, Brian Cole is listed as a receiver, but he may be better suited to play running back. 

    Cole is a fine athlete who is at his best when running with the football. He can skate away from defenders with noticeable acceleration, plus he has natural vision and elusiveness. The Michigan native is going to have to polish his route running if he's to exclusively work on the perimeter as a college offensive player.

    However, no matter where he lines up, expect the 4-star recruit to be the source of a lot of big plays at the next level. Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State are his top schools, according to 247Sports.

Sterling Jenkins, OL

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    Credit: 247Sports

    Sterling Jenkins is a talented 4-star offensive lineman from Pittsburgh who has the potential to be a starting left tackle in college.

    The 6'8", 305-pound blocker has the length to keep power-rushers from getting under his pads, plus he can dance with athletic defensive ends as a pass-blocker due to being light on his feet. Jenkins doesn't panic often, as he can mirror on the edge to ride an end upfield with ease.

    He executes his assignments as a run-blocker, but he does need to get stronger and play more to his size at the point of attack. Ohio State and Michigan are in the mix with Penn State, Ole Miss and Pitt, according to 247Sports

Justin Hilliard, OLB

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    Credit: 247Sports

    A 5-star linebacker, Justin Hilliard is a terrific defensive prospect who hails from Cincinnati. He's a versatile 'backer who can play inside or on the flanks due to his athleticism and quickness.

    Hilliard, who is 6'2" and 230 pounds, attacks the line of scrimmage with a sudden first step when reads run. He shows good strength at the point of attack to shed, plus he has the range to scrape laterally and track running backs across the box.

    Hilliard also has the speed and agility to buzz into coverage, plus he shows the potential to be able to hold his own in man coverage. Keep an eye on Notre Dame, but Michigan and Ohio State are in the mix with a lot of other schools, says 247Sports.

    Josh Helmholdt of Rivals.com (subscription required) said last November, "Hilliard hails from the state of Ohio so he knows the Michigan-Ohio State rivalry well."

Damien Harris, RB

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    Credit: 247Sports

    A former Michigan commit, 5-star running back Damien Harris will be highly coveted until he makes a decision.

    The Kentucky native has outstanding foot quickness and agility, plus he's already 5'11" and 205 pounds. Harris has the potential to get bigger and stronger, which will help his power and tackle-breaking ability.

    Right now, however, his best asset is his quickness and solid speed. He has no issues jumping to the edges, and he can dodge defenders in the open field. Harris also runs with good vision and instincts.

    Michigan and Ohio State are his main suitors, says 247Sports


    Edwin Weathersby is the College Football Recruiting Analyst for Bleacher Report. He has worked in scouting/player personnel departments for three professional football teams, including the New York Giants and Cleveland Browns.