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Posted on Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 11:28 a.m.

Michigan football team's recruiting class rises to No. 3 after early morning commit

By Kyle Meinke

The Michigan football team's signing day was expected to be one of its most quiet in years.

Instead, it picked up a commitment from four-star tailback Dennis Norfleet in the wee hours of Wednesday morning, an addition that jumped the Wolverines to third in Scout's latest team rankings.

For those keeping track at home, yes, that means Michigan passed Ohio State. It trailed only Texas and Alabama as of 11 a.m.

The only caveat? The ranking does not reflect the Buckeyes signing-day addition of three-star linebacker Jamal Marcus.

According to Rivals, the Wolverines still trailed Ohio State as of 9 a.m. Wednesday. Michigan is slotted fifth there, coming in behind the Crimson Tide, Longhorns and Buckeyes, as well as Florida.

Norfleet, who stands 5-feet-7, 170 pounds, is Rivals' No. 5 all-purpose back in the country and Scout's No. 19 running back. He hails from Detroit, where he starred for King High School.

Kyle Meinke covers Michigan football for He can be reached at 734-623-2588, by email at and followed on Twitter @kmeinke.



Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 10:31 p.m.

Does anybody know if Scout's site crashed. I haven't been able to get to it all day.


Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 8:55 p.m.

If the defense can't see him behind the D-line and they can't catch him, then I don't care if he is 3 feet tall. Just remember, as they say "size doesn't matter" in all cases.

jim goodman

Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 5:46 p.m.

Remember Jamie Morris?


Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 7:23 p.m.

Let's not forget Gordy Bell! "He could run 15 minutes in a phone booth and never touch the sides!" -- Bob Ufer.


Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 7:09 p.m.

mike Hart?


Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 5:12 p.m.

5'7"? Many criticized RR for recruiting small backs, I wonder if Hoke will get the same treatment?

David Neil

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 2:21 a.m.

Short running backs are actually okay; like maybe Maurice Jones-Drew, Ray Rice, and another guy that did well for us in Detroit, Barry Sanders.

Matt Patercsak

Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 5:54 p.m.

with Drake Johnson 6'0 205, and sione houma 6'0 211. not to mention thomas rawls 5'10 220; I'd say that Hoke has room for a change of pace back. he'll probably return punts anyways.


Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 5:40 p.m.

Honestly, it was the first thing I thought of. Hope he pans out, but.... 5'7"? Good luck!

mark h

Wed, Feb 1, 2012 : 5:20 p.m.

I suspect this guy will be used more in the kick/punt return game where his size will be less of an issue.