January 1, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; Michigan Wolverines defensive coordinator Greg Mattison prior of the 2013 Outback Bowl at Raymond James Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan Football: Some Potential Surprises

Posted at 12:00pm — 1/22/2014

Michigan Football: Some Potential Surprises

Been a few tough months for UM football, hopefully we have hit the bottom. Sometimes when things get real bad, very good people become more aggressive, become tougher, look at every angle to improve and improve quickly, maybe this happens starting this spring.

Thinking of spring, just some thoughts on some potential surprises.

1) Bryant:
With our new offensive scheme, will this give Chris Bryant some renewed hope? Assuming Bryant is still around and assuming Bryant spends this off-season productively.Bryant may get a close look in spring. Reason? Well if they simplify the blocking schemes Bryant is still our most physical run blocker. If Bryant is able to get to point A to Point B and hit somebody he is pretty good. And although he struggled at times in pass protection it was not the reason he lost his job once installed in starting line-up. We will know very early in spring about Bryant because if he is in the mix, that will mean he had a great off-season.

Prediction:
Probably wont happen, I have felt for quite some time he was a candidate for transferring and he is just one of those kids who needs some extra motivation to increase his work ethic. But, Nuss offense gives him a chance which was probably non-existent if Borges would of stayed.

2) Strobel:
I just think Strobel is a better football player than Wormley. He has been hurt and obviously Mattison does not agree with my assessment. But if he is healthyand if he gets his shot in spring I think he will take advantage and at the minimum be in the 2-deep.

3) D’Mario Jones:
I was impressed with Jones this fall and he sure brings speed to the line-up, something desperately needed. I thought he showed ability to get into routes and he consistently caught the ball in practice. Not saying he going to be a all-conference type of player, but in our line-up he can contribute.

Nov 30, 2013; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines quarterback Devin Gardner (98) is lifted into the air by offensive linesman Ben Braden (71) after scoring a touchdown in the first quarter against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

4) Braden:
I have discussed him before, but to me he is the key for 2014 in terms of success on the OL. Reason? He is not the only candidate for RT, but if anybody beats out Braden at RT we are in trouble in 2014. Every time I see Braden I am impressed with his size and when you see him go through drills you easily see that he is our most athletic OL, in fact, I bet he runs a sub 5 40 (although I admit I am not a great judge of 40 times), but my point is when the OL group runs sprints, is basically Braden then everyone else. Can he play football at this level? I guess we find out this spring.

5) Delano Hill:
Delano is a hard one to judge. When I watch him I think he is one of the better players in practice (now I admit sometimes coaches run drills that make some position groups look better), but Hill has speed. He is a tough kid. He seems to cover in pass coverage (again he is playing pass protection against our WR’s). But Hill is the reason I hope they move Jeremy Clark to LB. I just think in terms of safety Hill will eventually pass up Clark.

Note:
I read where some posters say Jeremy Clark is listed at 205lbs. That may be accurate, but he sure looks more like 215-220 to me. And how may teams do we play that has a LB under 225 lbs that seems to be all-Americans against UM. Clark could easily be 225 or 230 by next year.

6) Shallman:
He is healthy.

7) York:
I keep saying I like this kid. Not as much as Darboh a year ago, but I think he can play and adds depth.

Dec 28, 2013; Tempe, AZ, USA; Michigan Wolverines head coach Brady Hoke in the second half against the Kansas State Wildcats during the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl at Sun Devil Stadium. Kansas State defeated Michigan 31-14. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

One Comment:
Although UM is going through a tough time, I would bet there are not more than 10-12 teams in the country who would love to have our roster. Almost every kid at UM was a very good player in HS, some played in very good conferences. There is no reason why these kids should not be able to compete with anybody on our schedule.

Its time for these kids to show great progress and as I stated in my opening paragraph, hopefully everyone sees the urgency of developing these kids.

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Written by GBMWolverine Staff — MaizeMan

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