There was quite a panic this morning when news started floating around that Demar Dorsey had signed a letter of intent with a community college. This is true. It’s also not nearly a big a deal as one would first think. Thanks to Brian and his legion of MGoBloggers, we know that:
- Players can sign a letter of intent to both a Division I team and a JUCO or NAIA school — an LOI is simply an agreement on the part of the school to honor its commitment to the player.
- Of the 70 players who signed LOIs to Ft. Scott Community College (the JUCO where Dorsey signed his LOI), 56% of them never actually made it to Ft. Scott.
If that sounds like “backup plan” to you, well, you hit the nail on the head:
“He’s working very hard to be a Wolverine, but he has to be ready just in case, to recover if he doesn’t get in. If he comes here, we’d love to develop him, and get him to his goals. WE ARE HIS BACK UP PLAN. He may never end up at our school. If he can’t get qualified, then he needs to know that he has a backup plan, and that’s us.”
That was Ft. Scott’s head coach, Jeff Sims, in an interview with MGoBlog’s TomVH this morning. So, yes, Demar Dorsey did sign a letter of intent to play at a community college. He also signed a letter of intent to play at Michigan. A lot of players need to do some work academically before they make it to Ann Arbor — Justin Turner wasn’t qualified until after fall practices started last season, but he’s on the team now and was available last fall. Of course, this can also go down the road Adrian Witty took, where a player can’t quite get the grades or test scores to qualify. With no comment yet from Dorsey, nobody knows how close he is to qualifying, although he must have a reasonable shot, otherwise Michigan wouldn’t have offered him in the first place — remember, U-M essentially pulled Tony Drake’s offer this year when it became clear the commit wasn’t going to make it academically, and Drake managed to qualify at Colorado State.
This news certainly isn’t good — it’s clear Dorsey has some work to do academically to get on campus in the fall, and Michigan could really use a player of his talent in the secondary — but it’s way too early for panicking. It’s been made very clear that Dorsey’s goal is still to be in Ann Arbor and ready to go for the fall, and until there is some concrete news about his academic status, I’m not concerned about a player covering all his bases in the event things don’t go according to plan.