Derrick Green: How Brady Hoke, Michigan Can Keep Edge for 5-Star RB

Andrew KulhaSenior Analyst IIIDecember 10, 2012

Via 247Sports
Via 247Sports

Brady Hoke and the Michigan Wolverines have gained an edge for 5-star running back Derrick Green, but now the question becomes: How do they keep it?

Green recently did an interview with Mike Farrell of In it, he talked about the schools that make up his top six now: Michigan, Auburn, Tennessee, Oregon, Ole Miss and Miami.

There was one statement that should really stand out to Michigan fans in this interview, though, and it could be very telling in regards to what's really going on in Green's recruiting process. When asked by Farrell if Michigan had gained an advantage because of Tennessee and Auburn firing their head coaches, Green admitted that it "definitely" gives Michigan an edge.

This is a huge admission from Green, especially since his recruiting process has been pretty close to the vest. It's also a big moment for Michigan in regards to the recruitment of the 5-star back.

While there are still other programs in the mix, Tennessee, Auburn and Michigan have been considered to be the unofficial favorites for Green. With Derek Dooley and Gene Chizik getting fired at Auburn and Tennessee respectively, though, there's one program that has stood constant within the bunch and that's Michigan.

They seem to have the edge for now, but the more important thing for the Wolverines is being able to hold that edge.

How do Hoke and his staff keep their advantage with the 5-star running back?

The world of college football recruiting is ever-changing and unpredictable, and that can take its toll on a recruit, so the last thing they need is for their potential school to display the same characteristics.

Hoke is the head man at Michigan, and for all intents and purposes, he has done a great job of rebuilding the program to relevance—at least. Barring something unforeseen, Hoke is going to be the coach at the helm of the program for years to come and that's a huge pitch that the Wolverines can use with Green.

Losing his connection with Chizik and Dooley obviously impacted his connection with Auburn and Tennessee, but Michigan can assure the 5-star back that a head coaching change will not be happening in Ann Arbor—at least not anytime soon.

Consistency and connection seem to be important for Green, so Michigan needs to focus on those two areas with him.

The other thing Michigan needs to keep reminding Green about is the potential impact he can have on its program. It's no secret that Hoke wants to transition to a pro-style offense and the success of that transition will largely revolve around having the right player at running back.

Green checks in at 6'0'', 220 pounds and runs a 4.4 40, according to, so he has the size to run between the tackles, but the speed to be a breakaway back on the edges or at the second level. He's also athletic and talented enough to be a factor out of the backfield as a pass-catcher, but he's big and physical enough to stay home and protect.

He really projects to be the perfect back for a pro-style system and that has to be something that Hoke and his staff constantly remind him of.

The 5-star back has some very formidable programs on his list, but if he chooses Michigan, he can be a part of a winning tradition, he'll get national exposure and he can be an integral part of the team's rebuild and transition into the pro set.

He'd also have the chance to win a lot of games, because he won't be the only talented recruit Hoke is bringing in through his 2013 class (Hoke's class is currently ranked No. 5 overall by Rivals).

Overall, Michigan has a great pitch for the 5-star back and it appears like it has gotten the edge because of its consistency.

Holding that edge is going to be what really matters, though. If it focuses on those few points, there's a good chance that Hoke and the Wolverines can come away with one of the most talented players in the 2013 recruiting class.

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