Four-star offensive tackle Isaiah Wilson has narrowed down his recruitment and will announce his commitment on Friday. The Campus Insiders offers its predictions on where the nation’s No. 9 offensive tackle will end up.
As we creep further into the holiday season, there will be one lucky team who ends up with the nation’s No. 49 overall player.
Alabama, Florida State, Georgia and Michigan are all vying for a commitment from 4-star recruit Isaiah Wilson. He’s 6-foot-7, 354 lbs of nastiness on the offensive line and is ranked as the No. 9 offensive tackle in the 2017 recruiting class.
With official visits spent in Tallahassee on Nov. 11, Ann Arbor on Nov. 19, Tuscaloosa on Nov. 25, and Athens on Dec. 9, the race is as close as it’s ever been. However, the work done by Tyrone Wheatley and Mario Cristobal have made the Wolverines and Crimson Tide the frontrunners for his pledge. Sam Pittman has also done a nice job of keeping the Bulldogs in the hunt.
The Campus Insiders staff got together and offered predictions for where the Brooklyn native will send his National Letter of Intent.
This recruitment has been an interesting one. From what I’ve heard, Wilson has been leaning toward Michigan for months now. And I believe Alabama’s commitments from other offensive tackles like Jedrick Wills and Alex Leatherwood made this decision a lot easier for Wilson.
Having said that, the Wolverines already have commitments from four offensive tackles of their own. Still, I believe Wilson will pick Michigan because of his relationship with Jim Harbaugh, and that will, in turn, force one or two of the other offensive tackles to flip from Michigan. The most likely scenario I see playing out has Wilson picking the maize and blue, and then 4-star prospect Kai-Leon Herbert flipping his commitment to either Florida or Miami.
Is Michigan going to get every top recruit as this cycle winds to a close? No, but the Wolverines will come close. Jim Harbaugh is a recruiting machine, especially with schools on the East Coast. While Alabama can make a major run at him, I still think the Wolverines get themselves a nice offensive tackle.
If Cristobal remains on Alabama’s staff and is not poached by new FAU head coach Lane Kiffin—Cristobal was unceremoniously dismissed as head coach at FIU, which shares a conference with FAU—I think Wilson could be wooed by the Crimson Tide. Alabama could win yet another national title, so Wilson could be enamored with the idea of playing for the best.
With that in mind, I’m going to go with ‘Bama here, as Michigan and Georgia offer the strongest competition for his services. He grew up a UGA fan, and there is some buzz that a move up in his commitment date may work in Kirby Smart and the Bulldogs’ favor.
I think Kirby Smart closes the deal here. Wilson’s last official visit was down to Athens right before the recruiting dead period. Obviously, this is a football decision, but Athens is an idyllic college town and could be what tips the scale in UGA’s favor – especially for a kid from New York heading down to the South in the dead of winter.
From a pigskin perspective, UGA needs this. Of Wilson’s primary suitors, UGA has the fewest combination of tackles both on the roster and committed. Moreover, much of the Bulldogs’ offensive line is comprised of upperclassmen. Come in, protect a prodigy quarterback who will, more than likely, be in Heisman discussions, potentially open holes for Sony Michel and Nick Chubb, and gain instant recognition. Smart puts on the hard sell and lands the 4-star talent.
Jim Harbaugh has built a strong pipeline from Ann Arbor to the Northeast in very little time, and I only see it getting stronger. Harbaugh made Isaiah Wilson a priority visit prior to the start of the recruiting dead period, which will have a positive effect for the Wolverines. With a potential flip from fellow OT Kai-Leon Herbert hanging out there, Harbaugh will do all he can to make sure he has enough bodies and talent at the position in this cycle. I predict he stays in the cold weather and continues to forge that pipeline for Michigan.