Michigan Spring Game: Defense Dominant and Morris is Best QB

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Apr 4, 2015; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh is seen during the football Spring football game at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

This years Michigan Spring Game was highly anticipated and rightfully so. The Jim Harbaugh led Michigan Wolverines have a lot of pressure to perform this season. The game was competitive all throughout and it was great to see that the quarterbacks were not off limits to being hit. The Blue team was victorious over the Maize team 7-0 and there were some promising performances, especially on defense.

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The defenses for both teams were great. At this point in the offseason you expect the defense to be ahead of the offense, but it was still impressive. One thing Michigan struggled with last season was forcing turnover and the two defenses combined to force four. The Blue defense had two interceptions and a fumble recovery, while Joe Bolden had an interception for the Maize defense. Bolden was one of the better defensive performers along with guys like Willie Henry, Brandon Watson, Dymonte Thomas, and Jarrod Wilson. It was great seeing Jabrill Peppers back on the field, and doing pushups on the sidelines after just missing an interception. The Blue team defense played slightly better and really tightened up after giving up a big run to De’Veon Smith on the opening play of the game.

Shane Morris wasn’t spectacular, but he was the best QB on the field today. He got off to a little bit of a slow start but really picked it up late in the first half. After receiver Amara Darboh dropped a great deep ball from Morris earlier in the half, he caught a big pass on a 3rd and 28 play. The two also hooked up on a great sideline throw to set up the first touchdown of the game late in the second quarter. The touchdown was a perfect touch pass from Morris to receiver Jaron Dukes. Morris missed a few throws as well, but nothing horrible. He also had to deal with multiple drops, including one pass that went off the hands of Dukes and was intercepted.

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True freshman Alex Malzone wasn’t bad, but his inexperience was evident in a game setting. He made some nice throws and had to deal with drops, but he also telegraphed some throws. He had two interceptions in the game and the second one, that was picked off by Desmond Morgan, was completely on him. Malzone is a winner and has a good feel for the game, but at this point he still has a ways to go before he can really compete for the starting job.

Overall it was a solid game with both teams playing hard. Shane Morris looks like the current leader for the starting quarterback job, but will have to fend off more competition coming shortly in Jake Rudock and Zach Gentry. The defense has the potential to be dominant and the offense, while a work in progress, has the talent to put up some points. Now it’s time to fine tune some things and get ready for the start of the season.