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Posted on Thu, Aug 20, 2009 : 8:49 a.m.

Freshman Craig Roh will be a factor at 'quick' end position for Michigan football team

By Dave Birkett

Add defensive end Craig Roh to the list of true freshmen expected to have an impact for Michigan this year.

"It’s only been one week, but he’s got some natural ability, pass-rush wise, and we’re teaching him some different things in the scheme of our defense," Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez said Tuesday. "But I think he could help us at least in a pass-rush mode and then as he continues to learn the defense he’ll do more and more of it."

While Brandon Herron is expected to start at the new "quick" end position, the hybrid linebacker/defensive end in coordinator Greg Robinson's scheme, Roh cemented his spot the playing group when backup Marell Evans left the team earlier this month.

Converted tight end Steve Watson is the only other "quick" end on the roster, but Roh's explosiveness makes him a favorite to see the field early.

The Scottsdale, Ariz., native had 16 1/2 sacks last year, when he was named Arizona's Gatorade Player of the Year.

"I would call him raw," defensive tackle Ryan Van Bergen said. "I think he needs to kind of learn that there’s a lot more scheming involved in college football. The athleticism he possess, he can be an excellent player. He’s got to gain a little weight, but from what I’ve seen he can really rush the passer and he’s very skilled at that."