Posted by Adam Jacobi
The wide receiving corps at Michigan got a little thinner on Tuesday as junior wideout Je'Ron Stokes was granted his release from the football program, according to a spokesperson.
Stokes was a highly-regarded transfer from Tennessee who left the Volunteers when Phil Fulmer was fired, but his recruiting hype failed to translate into significant production on the field; Stokes had just one catch for 11 yards in all of the 2010 season (against Iowa, to be precise), and his 2009 campaign (two catches, 16 yards, all in the Delaware State game) was scarcely better.
Stokes' departure comes on the heels of fellow WR Darryl Stonum being suspended for the whole 2011 season by new head coach Brady Hoke, so after the top three wide receivers (Martavious Odoms, Roy Roundtree, Junior Hemingway), there isn't a whole lot of depth in the receiver corps right now. If Stokes is leaving this late in the process (rather than, say, spring or summer), though, it's probably the case that he wasn't in line to get much playing time, so his departure shouldn't be enough to make Michigan fans panic.
This, for the record, is the second departure from Michigan in as many days. Freshman offensive lineman Tony Posada departed on Monday, and while this doesn't exactly equate an exodus from Ann Arbor or any other major cause for concern, mgoblog correctly notes that it does mean there'll be something like 57 returning scholarship players next season for the Wolverines. Again, not terrible, but it does mean Michigan's going to need to hit its quota of 25 scholarships in the next recruiting class, then find a few more scholarship players (grayshirts, walk-ons, what have you) to get back to the 85 scholarship limit.