Michigan basketball inked four recruits in the early-signing period, but currently just one, 6-foot-3 guard Dommanic Ingerson of Santa Barbara, Calif., is academically eligible.
The other three Flint Northern”s 6-foot-6 guard JaQuan, Detroit King”s 6-foot-7 forward Chuck Bailey and 6-foot-8 forward Kelly Whitney of Chicago have yet to meet the required test scores.
“We are concerned. We”re hopeful, but we”re concerned,” Michigan coach Tommy Amaker said. “It”s getting late. We”re already into May. There aren”t that many more opportunities to gain the necessary qualifying test score.”
If all four eventually reach the required score and play at Michigan next year, Amaker can sign just one more scholarship athlete this year, as a new rule states a team cannot hand out more than five a year. But Amaker may just hold on to that fifth scholarship for now.
“What we”re probably going to do is just use it for the next class,” Amaker said. “We”re going to live and die right now with who we are and looking for the younger kids looking to complete their junior year in high school. That will give us the full cycle to really recruit them this summer going into their senior years, have a chance to get some kids to want to come on board here.”
Amaker had been pursuing 7-footer Chris Charles, who had given an oral commitment to Seton Hall before Amaker”s departure. Charles has now orally committed to Villanova, another Big East school, after considering Michigan.
Standout freshman Eddie Griffin, who was recruited to Seton Hall by Amaker, discussed his decision with his coach while Amaker was still in charge of the Pirates.
“We talked about it. I think he had a phenomenal freshman year,” Amaker said.
Amaker said events such as falling hard on his knee in early December and his brother passing away weighed on his mind and pushed him toward deciding to make the jump to the NBA.
“I think he made a very good decision because I think he”s going to be drafted anywhere from one to five,” Amaker said. “If you”re projected to be that high of a draft pick, it”s kind of hard not to encourage him to make that move. I thought that”s what he was leaning toward anyway.”
Although he has not spoken to Griffin in a while, Amaker said he is going to try to contact Griffin soon.