Breaking down Andrew Sprague commitment to Michigan Football

ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN - SEPTEMBER 10: Offensive Coordinator / Assistant Coach Sherrone Moore is seen before a college football game against the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors at Michigan Stadium on September 10, 2022 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images)
ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN - SEPTEMBER 10: Offensive Coordinator / Assistant Coach Sherrone Moore is seen before a college football game against the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors at Michigan Stadium on September 10, 2022 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images) /

The Wolverines continued their success in recruiting today, landing four-star offensive tackle Andrew Sprague, a major target for Michigan football up front. We look at what this means and a brief scouting synopsis on Sprague.

When the identity of the offense is built around its physicality and run game, adding four-star offensive linemen with power and athleticism is heavily important.

Michigan football made some major progress in ensuring its offensive line can continue its dominance today, landing Missouri four-star offensive tackle Andrew Sprague less than a week removed from his visit.

Michigan had been pursuing Sprague for quite some time, extending an offer to the 6’8 offensive tackle all the way back in April of 2022, nearly a full year to date. His height, build, and athleticism made him a clear priority for the Wolverines, and 247Sports’ Steve Lorenz has even suggested Sprague may just sit at the very top of Michigan’s tackle board.

Sprague had a multitude of offers from big programs, listing Michigan, Notre Dame, USC, LSU, Oklahoma, Oregon, Penn State, and Wisconsin as a handful of many who offered. The Irish in particular gave heavy pursuit to Sprague, albeit somewhat too little, too late, as the change of OL coach from Harry Hiestand to Joe Rudolph causes some re-evaluation of their OL board.

The buzz for Michigan really kicked into gear ahead of the Spring Game, with 247’s Steve Wiltfong placing a prediction in Michigan’s favor. Several others soon followed Wiltfong’s lead.

Scouting Report on Sprague

So what exactly are the Wolverines getting in their new offensive tackle commitment? As a former college offensive lineman, I give my amateur scouting report here:

"Sprague has an elite frame at 6’8 and with plenty of room to fill it out at the next level, listed in the 260-270 lbs. range between the different sites and his hudl. Very smooth athlete who fights to stay low and sink his hips into the block. Quite a feet for someone his height. Violent finisher with excellent form through his run fit. Not a ton in pass protection (common theme for these write-ups) but in the clips he does have, shows a solid timing with his hands and already comfortable breaking down the arm of the arm of the rusher when he can. Pretty polished all together, but still a world of upside due to his low weight relative to his height. Absolutely has the first-round pick kind of upside as a true franchise left tackle if Sherrone Moore can land and develop him. Very few glaring issues on film. He could stand to be more accurate with his punch in protection, dips his head into the block from time-to-time and turns his shoulders a little sooner from his set than you’d like to see, but overall, the issues are minimal and the upside is enormous. Must land recruit for Moore and co., no matter what Michigan can do in the portal."

Furthermore, the Michigan-centric comparison I give for Sprague is a Jake Long-caliber of prospect. Long, for those young enough to not remember one of the greatest ever, played for the Wolverines from 2003-2007 under Lloyd Carr, before becoming the first overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft, selected by the Miami Dolphins. Long would go on to receive NFL All-Pro honors several different times throughout his career, and was a two-time All-American and Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year at Michigan.

Is this to say Sprague is guaranteed to become Long? Certainly not. Rather, it is simply noting that Sprague shares Long’s imposing build and competitive demeanor.

Impact on Remaining OL Recruiting

The Wolverines now have three offensive linemen committed in their 2024 class, with Sprague joining four-star guard Luke Hamilton (OH) and three-star tackle Ben Roebuck (OH). The Wolverines will not simply stop there, however, as they aim to take about five or six offensive linemen in this class. Part of this is due to back-to-back small classes in 2021 and 2022 along the OL.

Right now, Michigan also appears to lead for four-star offensive lineman Blake Frazier (TX), four-star tackle Bennett Warren (TX), and three-star center Jake Guarnera (FL). The Wolverines are also strongly in contention for four-star lineman Max Anderson (TX), and are making a big push for four-star tackle Michael Uini (TX) and five-star tackle Brandon Baker (CA).

Right now, Sprague projects as a left tackle for this class, with Roebuck likely more of a right tackle for the Wolverines and Hamilton playing guard. Frazier and Anderson both have flexibility between guard and tackle and thus Michigan football can simply add them to the class and figure out which position they’ll end up at once they have been on campus for a year or so.

Overall, offensive coordinator/offensive line coach Sherrone Moore has put together a very strong foundation for this OL recruiting class. The Wolverines are now poised to go “big game hunting” for top prospects, not having to reach on kids simply to fill up their numbers.

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I would personally anticipate another OL addition within a month or two, as guys like Blake Frazier and Jake Guarnera will likely want to claim their spot in Michigan’s OL class before space runs out.