Some players fly under the radar throughout high school, hardly sending up flares for many college coaches. But many have talent or can be successful.
Aaron Rodgers wasn't heavily recruited. Neither was Terrell Owens, Tony Romo or Clay Matthews.
As a rising senior, Sam Huffman (Lima, Ohio/Central Catholic) has been flying under the radar. The 2013 wide receiver hasn't received any offers yet, and is mainly hearing from MAC and Ivy League programs.
So he had quite the surprise last week when Michigan wide receiver coach Jeff Hecklinski made a trip down to Lima to visit with Central Catholic coach Jerry Cooper about the 6-foot-3 receiver with great hands.
"He's such a good athlete and he has yet to fill out," Cooper said. "He's big and fast, they see him being a potential big, strong wideout."
Huffman's highlight film -- which grabbed the attention of Michigan coaches -- features one-handed catches and jump balls that Huffman seems to pull out of the sky. He's the type of threat Michigan wants, and on top of that he's the kind of student the Wolverines are looking for.
Huffman holds a 4.0 GPA and scored a 29 on his most recent ACT. He's hoping to go into engineering or pursue a degree that would allow him to go to law school following his undergraduate career. With that kind of focus on academics, he has pulled in the eyes of Penn, Cornell, Harvard and Yale.
He said the Ivy League is attractive.
"You need to look at academics in this process," Huffman said. "You need to get a job when you can’t run and jump and play anymore."
Outside of those schools, the Ohio native has garnered looks from Toledo, Bowling Green, Miami (Ohio), Akron and Kent State.
Huffman is planning on hitting the camp circuit hard this summer with stops at the interested MAC programs as well as some schools he hasn't heard from including Cincinnati, Illinois, Northwestern and Michigan State.
He believes camp exposure could be what he needs to get his first offer because he thrives on top competition and he knows coaches are out there looking for playmakers.
"I know how to position myself on the field to make plays," Huffman said. "I'm not always the biggest or strongest guy but I know how to be in the right spot and scout the other team."
Huffman said he'd camp with the Wolverines if they're interested because Michigan is by far the biggest football school to give Huffman a look. Hecklinski was impressed enough with Huffman's highlight film and with what Cooper said that he took a full game tape and said he'd be in touch.
The Wolverines already have two 2013 commits (Jaron Dukes, Csont’e York) and have recently put out a few more wide receiver offers (Jordan Cunningham, Paul Harris), but with the possibility of taking three wide receivers in the 2013 class, Michigan still has time before it closes out this class and will continue evaluating players.
"When they saw him on film they liked his size and they see his potential," Cooper said. "When you're big and fast, good coaches can do a lot with you if you have potential. Sam has potential. I think he's going to fill out. Couple that with the fact he's a can’t-miss student … that makes him so recruitable."