Apr 13, 2013; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines tight end Devin Funchess (19) during the Spring Game at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan Football: Spring Practice Is Over -- The Clock Ticks Towards Fall

Posted at 7:00am — 4/19/2013

Michigan Football: Spring Practice Is Over — The Clock Ticks Towards Fall

We here have stated that spring practices and the ending game cannot always be used as a vehicle for evaluation. But some things are more obvious than others. Starting with the obvious is a good mechanism.

On offense, the one obvious observation that will get little dispute from anyone is the transformation Coach Borges and the Michigan offense are undertaking. There is no secret here; Coach Borges has communicat4ed his wishes and vision with articulation and clarity since the end of last season.

The underpinning capstone to this fundamental change is the run game. It can be said that plenty of work is still in the works. This is an easy expectation when three interior linemen are being replaced by three (or more) very young players who have little college experience. Whether it is the blast or pulling to the edge, the line has plenty of work. And the only cure is plenty of work over plenty of time.

The running backs are clustered in a group that can best be described as adequate. But the face of the Michigan running game may change this fall with Green, Smith, and Fitz joining the competition. This will all sort out, perhaps later, but maybe sooner.

Michigan is not tight end rich, but the Wolverines are not tight end poor either. Coach Borges has made it clear he does not view the Michigan offense without productive tight end play. Williams, Funchess, and Jake Butt all bring a somewhat different set of skills to the table. There are also others who have showed some ability to contribute.

Gardner can throw, and the emphasis on rolling out and good play action should help the entire offense. Ball protection still looks to be a concern, one that would not show up in a controlled scrimmage.

Coach Mattison will have plenty of options in creating multiple defensive situational packages. Not only will the defensive line have options, but the linebackers and defensive backs as well. Look for at least twenty defensive players to get regular action. Look for opposing offensive coordinators to attempt to try and keep Michigan from using situational substitutions.

There are some obvious things of note. Like any team, there are plenty of question marks, a topic for another day.

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Written by GBMWolverine Staff

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