Four-star wide receiver Tarik Black has narrowed down his recruitment and will announce his commitment on Wednesday. The Campus Insiders staff gave its predictions on where the nation’s No. 13 wide receiver will end up.
We’re officially in the recruiting dead period, and prospects are lining up and knocking out their commitments as we inch closer to National Signing Day.
One of the next big-time recruits to make his decision is Tarik Black, the nation’s No. 13 wide receiver and No. 99 overall player in the 2017 recruiting class. Black, who’s from Cheshire, Connecticut, will be deciding between Alabama, Auburn, Michigan, Stanford and UCLA.
With official visits spent in Ann Arbor on Sept. 3, Auburn on Sept. 10 and Tuscaloosa on Nov. 12, it appears as though the Crimson Tide, Tigers and Wolverines are the frontrunners for his commitment. His respective recruiters have been Mario Cristobal, Kodi Burns and Jay Harbaugh.
The Campus Insiders staff got together and offered predictions for where the 4-star wide receiver will send his National Letter of Intent.
For a long time, it looked like Alabama was going to land Tarik Black. The Crimson Tide already have commitments from 4-star wide receivers Tyrell Shavers and Jerry Jeudy. Auburn made a push, too, but Black is going to Michigan. I just can’t see him passing up an opportunity to play for Jim Harbaugh, alongside Donovan Peoples-Jones, whom I also see in maize and blue, and Dylan McCaffrey. Let’s not forget Michigan also signed Brandon Peters as part of its 2016 recruiting class. I fully believe Black and Peoples-Jones will be in the Wolverines’ class going into the weekend.
Alabama will get shunned, and Black will sign with the Wolverines in Ann Arbor. If Auburn has any chance at landing him, it is the fact that Jarrett Stidham will be playing at quarterback next season for the Tigers, given Stidham is better than any quarterback the Wolverines will be able to field next season.
I’m going to go out on a limb and say that Black is energized by Jarrett Stidham’s decision to go to Auburn. When the Tigers’ offense is clicking, it is fun to watch. Black may want to be a big part of that newfound energy with the Baylor transfer’s arrival. Auburn will not go too big on receivers in this class after signing four in ‘16, but Black would be a coup.
I have a very difficult time seeing Black landing anywhere but Ann Arbor, so let me rule out his other suitors before making a case for the Wolverines.
Stanford and UCLA feel like lip service – excellent academic institutions that are 2,500 miles away from home. Alabama has just lost its offensive coordinator, and while Lane Kiffin wasn’t the primary recruiter in this instance (and of all teams, nobody weathers turnover as good as Alabama) there is still at least an air of uncertainty as to what the Tide’s offensive schemes will look like next year.
Auburn feels like the biggest threat, what with Stidham now on board and the potential for one of the country’s top big-play offenses. However, Gus Malzahn and staff could be on a short leash, which is something that has undoubtedly been mentioned on the trail. There is a strong boom/bust feeling around the Tigers right now – lightning in a bottle vs. program revival.
And now for Michigan. Jim Harbaugh is bringing in Dylan McCaffrey, who figures to be the program’s next great quarterback. Beyond that, Harbaugh has built a relative pipeline to the Northeast. He’s planted his flag in New Jersey, was just bumping around New York for the Heisman Trophy ceremony, and is now making his way up to Connecticut. It’s like Winfield Scott’s Anaconda Plan during the Civil War, only this squeeze starts in Detroit, cuts across to the Atlantic, and is now making its way up the Eastern Seaboard.
Going with the maize and blue for Black. Jarrett Stidham’s decision to transfer to Auburn is a factor to consider, but I still believe the Wolverines keep him on the north side of the country and keep the pipeline from the Northeast flowing into Ann Arbor.