Michigan Recruiting: Rich Rod's Halfback Happenings

Bennett KaplanCorrespondent IJanuary 31, 2009

With a stacked defensive recruiting class, Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez is on his way to creating a new and improved Wolverine team. With players such as Craig Roh and William Campbell coming in, the defense will have better depth and talent for the future. 

On the other side of the ball, Rich has landed "the savior," quarterback Tate Forcier, who is said to be a lock for the starting job. Besides Forcier, the offensive players who are coming to Michigan have not been discussed much, especially the running backs. 

Here is some insight on Michigan's incoming running backs, and what their respective roles will be for Michigan.


1. Fitzgerald Toussaint (Ohio)

Toussaint, perhaps the best-known of Michigan's incoming running backs, is ESPN's 28th back in the nation, and the top running back on Michigan's board.

At 5'9'', what Toussaint lacks in size, he makes up for with his strength and speed, qualities that make Toussaint a threat between the tackles. His deceptive speed and cutback ability will fit perfect with the spread offense.


2. Terric Jones (Michigan)

Jones is equal in height to Toussaint, at 5'9'', but weighs less (200 pounds to 186 pounds). With his speed and elusiveness, Jones, as well as Toussaint, is a perfect fit for the spread.

Jones runs great in the open field, and has the ability to go the distance every time he touches the ball. Look for him to make an impact in the years to come.


3. Vincent Smith (Florida)

Smith, another small running back, at 5'7'', provides decent speed after initial contact, but uses his strength to go straight up the middle. Smith can power his way through holes and bounce off tacklers.

With lots of work, and training, he could be used with the Michigan offense in his later years. Smith may not get much playing time this year.

With a defense-filled class, the running game is playing a huge part as well. It will be a strong part in the Wolverine's offensive attack next season, and will open up the passing game for "Forcier and Friends."