Michigan Football Tidbits: Odds and ends

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Michigan Football Tidbits: Odds and ends

1) Kenny Demens is a player who has recently been placed on the “player-on-the-rise” list. Under Barwis, there is really no way any player can just go through the motions, but still, there are players who are more driven than others and therefore get a reputation of being an extra-hard worker.

Demens has impressed everyone, and with his strong freshmen year on the scout team is now in a position to be, at the very least, on the two-deep, with an outside shot of being in the starting line-up. This is an educated guess because of the uncertainties surrounding the new defensive coordinator and schemes he will choose to run, but Demens offers something we need — toughness and quickness at inside linebacker.

2) There has been a Sagesse sighting, and it looks like he finally will participate fully in spring practices this year. There has never been a question on Sagesse’s talent. Its always been a question of him getting healthy enough to allow himself to get in top shape. Maybe, just maybe, this is his year.

3) Has everyone actually put together a possible two-deep going into 2009. Do this — just for fun — put a two-deep together based on experience and what you know coming off 2008. Then put a two-deep together based on the info you have received based on who are the most talented. When you do, we think you will be shocked to see just how young the 2009 Michigan team is going to be.

Probably the youngest team Michigan has ever had. The good news is that the future looks bright — especially if the quarterbacks are as good as advertised. The bad news is that 2009 could be tough to watch because of the inexperience.

4) We cannot remember going into a spring with so many unanswered questions. In the past — especially in the Carr era — you could go to spring practice and know exactly who 90% of starters were going to be, even though they used to claim spring was for competition — it rarely happened.

Even last year, under Coach Rod, it was pretty obvious after watching a couple practices who was going to start and that our depth was terrible. The gap between first and second teams was painfully noticeable. This year, there could be someone starting one practice and not be in the two-deep the next.

5) Big Will, of course, has already been singled out as the incoming freshmen (those already on campus) as having the most athletic talent for his size.

Surprisingly, another name who Barwis has singled out is Mike Jones, commenting on his vertical jump. Mike Jones — seems strange that of all the incoming players, he had probably the most disappointing senior year in high school. The question is why? Lack of interest, nagging injury, played out of position? Don’t know, but his stock sure fell. It’s a good sign that his current performance in early workouts show a vastly improved player.

6) Roh is an interesting player to watch next fall. He has the reputation of being a tireless worker and coaches think he may show up in Ann Arbor around 250 lbs.

Coach Rod, of course, wants all the incoming freshmen to be in Ann Arbor to enroll in summer school and go through the entire summer workout. Roh, in a normal year, would be a definite candidate to red-shirt, but he offers something Michigan may really need next fall — a pass-rushing defensive end.

Right now, we have Graham, and all of the other potential defensive ends, who are better more run-stopping types. So could Roh be a specialized type of contributor next year?

7) We are constantly asked about Helmuth. Not much to report, except he has moved to defensive tackle and, although very small for the position, he seems to really enjoys the position change.

Not sure how much he will play (he reminds us of a kid like Criswell, who does everything asked of him, the ultimate team guy. You need kids like this on the team.)

8) Every recruit was recruited by Magee, Smith , Gibson, Frey, and Dews. All Coach Rod guys. Even Schofield who could be put in Shafer’s camp was recruited by Frey. Notice no Jackson, no Hopson and no Tall recruits.

Do not like wishing life away, but March 14 (first day of spring practice) cannot get here fast enough.

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Written by MaizeMan, CoachBt and ErocWolverine