And Michigan has it's signing day "surprise". Most in the recruiting world didn't expect any action for Michigan on signing day until late last night when rumors began circling that a secret commit was going to come around in the final minutes. That recruit came early this morning in the form of Dennis Norfleet. Norfleet, a runningback from Detroit, is rated as a 4* recruit by Rivals and Scout.
This is a big pick-up for Michigan not only because it takes this class from the great to the "elite" level in many categories, but the team finally has an elite runningback in the class. Earlier in the year the Wolverines gained commitments from Drake Johnson and Sione Houma, but never had that "elite" runningback in the class. Certainly all three are going to bring some great talent to Ann Arbor and with Norfleet being one of the best runningbacks in the entire country, this is a HUGE pickup.
Norfleet is listed as 5'7" and weighing 165 lbs. He like many other recruits is listed as needing to work on his "size". As I said earlier with Willie Henry's commitment, this should be music to fans and coaches ears alike. There's a good chance Norfleet will redshirt so size is not going to be an issue. He'll have well over a year to "bulk up" because he sees the field potentially in 2013.
Along with this, Norfleet could do some great stuff in the pass game. Scout says he will be dangerous in the pass game and I think this is one of the major things that has him so highly rated. Try to think a little bit of Vincent Smith and you'll probably get a feel of what Norfleet can bring to the pass game. He should be one of those wildcards that can bring the offense to another level.
I don't expect Norfleet to make significant contributions right away, primarily because he's on the smaller side and Michigan has some solid depth at runningback, but he will surely be used often in the coming seasons, especially on third down. Either way this is a great addition for Michigan and takes this signing class to the next level. This is one of the better ones in recent memory and should bring a lot of excitement coming into 2012.
Photo Credit: Rivals