Michigan Football: Detroit Cass Tech Pipeline Alive and Well


Nov 14, 2015; Bloomington, IN, USA; Michigan Wolverines safety Delano Hill (44) breaks up a pass intended for Indiana Hoosiers wide receiver Mitchell Paige (87) on the last play of the game at Memorial Stadium. Michigan defeats Indiana in double overtime 48-41. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Since its opening in 1907, Detroit Cass Tech has regularly sent gifted high school students to the University of Michigan.

In the late 60s and early 70s, Cass Tech began sending outstanding football players to Michigan, also.

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Former Technicians like Tom Seabron, Curtis Greer and Harlan Huckleby all started for Michigan in the 70s, then went on to careers in the National Football League.

13th on rushing list

Greer was an All-American defensive end in 1979, and Huckleby is currently 13th on Michigan’s all-time rushing list with 2,624 yards.

In 1997, the pipeline strengthened even more, as former Michigan running back Thomas Wilcher took over the Technicians’ football program.

The building of a brand new school and the subsequent construction of it’s first on-site football stadium helped Cass Tech place a greater emphasis on football.

Hill Saves the Day

Today’s Michigan roster is dotted with former Technicians.

Former Cass Tech player Delano Hill saved the day in Michigan’s 48-41 double-overtime win at Indiana. His solo tackle of Hoosier quarterback Nate Sudfeld in the second overtime, set up the final play on Michigan’s two-yard line.

Indiana receiver Mitchell Paige did a slight out-cut just across the goal line but Hill used his hands effectively to break up Sudfeld’s pass to end the game.

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Cass Tech’s Jourdan Lewis U-M’s top CB

While Hill tallied a career high 10 tackles, prep teammates CB Jourdan Lewis, B-LB Royce Jenkins-Stone and reserve OL David Dawson each contributed.

Lewis is no doubt Michigan’s top cornerback, Jenkins-Stone is finding a home at the buck linebacker spot, and Dawson should be a starting offensive lineman in 2016. Senior Terry Richardson has played occasionally at cornerback.

Michigan has lost a few prominent recruits to Michigan State and Ohio State during the coaching transitions, but coach Jim Harbaugh has already picked up a 2016 verbal commitment from 6-3, 365 lb OG Michael Onweau, and is in line for WR Donovan People-Jones (2016) and S Jaylen Kelley-Powell (2017).

Crucial Contests

Hill and his other high school buddies will no doubt convince Cass Tech’s promising ballplayers to eventually become Wolverines.

“They have been my friends since I was a little kid, Hill told mgoblue.com. “and we’ve had fun playing together in high school and college. We’re going to be friends for our lifetimes, and those are the greatest friends you have.”

Both Michigan and Cass Tech have crucial contests this weekend. A Michigan win over Penn State Saturday, Nov. 21, could earn the Wolverines a berth in the Big Ten title game,  providing they also beat Ohio State the following week.

Meanwhile, Cass Tech meets Canton in the State Semifinals Friday, Nov. 20. The Technicians won back-to-back state championships in 2011 and 2012.

See Indiana highlights below: