Michigan already had two four-star prospects in Orchard Lake St. Mary's linebacker James Ross and Flint Powers defensive tackle Danny O'Brien, but they are now joined by 14 newly ranked prospects in what is turning out to be a great junior class for the state.
Royce Jenkins-Stone | LB | Detroit Cass Tech
He has had an outstanding season. We always knew he had the physical ability, but he really has put it all together this year and been a physical force for the Technicians. 6'2, 215-lbs with speed and a thirst for contact, he should be receiving offers very shortly.
Kelby Latta | OG | Battle Creek Harper Creek
Latta is a mauler. A throwback, straight ahead run blocker who dominates the man across from him. Michigan State and Wisconsin have already verbally offered, two smashmouth teams looking for a physical lineman like him.
Terry Richardson | CB | Detroit Cass Tech
With Michigan commit Delonte Hollowell on one side, teams have tried to throw at Richardson. Not wise. He has six interceptions on the year and has rarely given up any completions. Our question on him coming in was how well would he tackle? So far, he has been up to the task in that department. LSU, Alabama and Iowa have verbally offered.
Shane Barron | WR | Flint Carman-Ainsworth
He's a kid we just received film on and immediately knew we were looking at, at least, a three-star prospect. He has great open field ability and a knack for finding the end zone. Central Michigan extended a verbal offer, but the Chippewas should be joined by many more soon.
Drake Johnson | RB | Ann Arbor Pioneer
How special is Johnson? Ask the Cass Tech players on this list, who he torched for six touchdowns in four different ways earlier in the season. He's big (6'1, 205), fast (outstanding track athlete) and simply needs to find a true position. Is it defense, running back or wide receiver? That remains to be seen, but he's a special athlete.
Ben Braden | OG | Rockford
Having never played offensive line before, Braden had a great showing at summer camps last year, and has carried that over into the season. He's a big, powerful kid who finishes blocks. He may move inside in college, but he's a legitimate Division-1 prospect playing for one of the state's top programs.
Brian Blackburn | QB | Detroit Crockett
He's still a little on the raw side, but Crockett head coach Rod Oden has done a great job with him and has him playing at a high level. He has size (6'5, 215), a good arm and has made very good decisions so far this season.
Dennis Norfleet | RB | Detroit King
He's the guy everyone keyed in to stop when they played King, so Norfleet didn't put up dazzling numbers this year, but he's as explosive of a kid as there is in the state. Return man, slot receiver, running back, cornerback, he can do it all. Oh, and why were teams so keen on stopping Norfleet? Against their first opponent, Birmingham Brother Rice, a playoff team, Norfleet ran for 254 yards and five touchdowns.
Detrick Goff | RB | Grand Blanc
Justice Hayes went down and Goff took over nicely. He showed the ability to break longer runs, impressive for a 6'3, 220-lb back. His combination of size and athleticism means he could project to a number of positions, but this season did nothing to diminish his chances as a big time tailback.
Aaron Burbridge | WR | Farmington Hills Harrison
Burbridge returned from a knee injury and has really turned it on late in the year. 6'2 with good hands and the ability to go up and get the ball, he looks like Harrison's next in a line of great receivers.
Leviticus Payne | CB | Southfield
Payne is a speedy cover man who did a very good job on Burbridge. That should be no surprise to people who saw him over the summer, turning in performances which netted early verbal offers from Iowa and Toledo. He's not big at 5'8, but he's very quick, physical and also offers possibilities as a return man and slot receiver.
Nathan Ricketts | LB | Holland
The Dutch haven't had a big time prospect in a while, but Ricketts is primed to break the streak. He's a physical, solidly built middle linebacker with a good feel for the game as well as solid athleticism. True middle linebackers who can stuff the run seem to be rare in this class and Ricketts is just that.
Laron Taylor | LB | Detroit Cass Tech
He's sometimes the forgotten one at Cass, but Taylor is one of the leaders of the defense and makes play after play. His lack of great size (6'0, 205) concerned me early on, but he has shown me that he has everything else, and projects as a weakside guy in college.
Matt Godin | DT | Detroit Catholic Central
Godin is a big kid with good upside. He's 6'5, 270-lbs and is light on his feet and agile for someone with that frame. On tape this year, he played with better leverage and got off the ball with more explosion than he did a year ago. He keeps improving and capitalizing on his physical tools.