Demar Dorsey released from letter of intent, won't play at Michigan
Demar Dorsey, the most controversial and highest-ranked member of Michigan's 2010 recruiting class, is no longer a Wolverine.
Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon said Wednesday that Dorsey, who was expected to contribute to the Wolverines' thin secondary this fall, "will not be admitted to the university.""The reasons behind that are really between the admissions office and this young man," Brandon said. "That’s about all I can say about it."
Dorsey was considered a borderline academic qualifier when he signed a national letter of intent in February, but his father, Eddie Jackson, told AnnArbor.com that his son finished high school with a 2.5 grade-point average and scored 18 on his ACT, enough to make him eligible by NCAA standards.
Jackson said Michigan "didn't give us no real solid reason" why Dorsey's admission was denied, but he speculated the firestorm over his son's legal troubles was a factor.
Dorsey was arrested three times as a 15- and 16-year-old and confessed to two burglaries, but never was convicted of any crime.
“Truly, I feel that it probably (did play a part), but I’m not going to speculate or try to slander nobody,” Jackson said. “But if it did, kids go through problems. Wrong place at the wrong time. You have to give a kid an opportunity to redeem himself. He hasn’t been back in no trouble since the incident. The kid’s been straight, he’s been focusing doing everything he needs to do.”
Brandon said Michigan's admissions department renders final decision on who gets accepted to the university using "a variety of criteria."
"They have a process that they follow," Brandon said. "The process that’s been followed most recently is very consistent with everything they’ve done in the past. The situation that exists with any student-athlete who signs a letter of intent and ultimately does not get admitted is not a new situation, and it’s certainly not a unique situation. It’s happened before, it’s happening with other individuals, it will happen in the future. It’s an unfortunate part of the process."
Susan Peal, the manager of the National Letter of Intent Program, said less than 2 percent of the 36,110 recruits who signed NLIs across all NCAA Division I and II sports last year - just 668 - requested their release before enrolling in school.
No data was available on how many releases were at the institution's request.
"You hope that when coaches are recruiting prospective student-athletes they have a good idea whether they’re going to be admissible or not, but it just comes down to institution policy," Peal said. "That’s the hope that as long as the perspective student-athlete does not become a non-qualifier" he'll be admitted to the school with which he signs.
Jackson said Dorsey, ranked the No. 12 overall recruit in the country by ESPNU, faxed his release request to the university on Wednesday and will sit down this weekend to re-open his recruitment.
"He's holding up pretty good," Jackson said. "He's disappointed (in Michigan's decision). Being a kid, you get disappointed cause it was the school you were going to go to. But like I tell him, you live and you learn. You have to look at life, things happen for a reason. You never know.”
Dave Birkett covers University of Michigan football for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached by phone at 734-623-2552 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.