As Michigan football’s only returning defensive starter this season, Mike McCray is probably going to be asked to do a lot for the Wolverines at linebacker.
There was perhaps no player for Michigan football last season who emerged as strongly as linebacker Mike McCray.
Though it was his fourth season with the Wolverines, McCray had only compiled two tackles in his career. In 2013 he took a redshirt and didn’t see any game action. In 2014 he appeared in a total of 11 games but played very sparingly. Then he lost all of his 2015 season with a shoulder injury.
By the time McCray really got to start his college football career in 2016, he was 22 years old.
Coming off a season that started with him being an unproven piece on an otherwise very respectable defense, McCray will now be looked to as the experienced defender, the only returning starter.
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That’s the topic at hand on this episode of the Go Blue Crew.
McCray did a heck of a lot for the Wolverines last season. He finished with 76 total tackles, including 12 1/3 tackles for loss and 4 1/2 sacks. He also added seven passes defended and two interceptions.
McCray did struggle sometimes when having to work in space, but other than that, his strengths were very obvious, and they’ll presumably be there again for Michigan’s defense.
Speaking of the defense as a whole, it’s going to look different this year. That doesn’t automatically mean it’s going to take a step back though. So for a unit that’s returning McCray as its only starter, one of the big questions we wrestle with is what his biggest chunk of value will be.
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