You are viewing this article in the archives. For the latest breaking news and updates in Ann Arbor and the surrounding area, see
Posted on Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 5:59 a.m.

An early look at the Michigan football depth chart, and how the incoming recruits fit in

By Kyle Meinke


Expect some freshmen to find playing time when the Michigan football team takes the field later this year.

Jeff Sainlar |

A sign the Michigan football program is starting to turn the corner?

Not many true freshmen are expected to play significant roles next year, and perhaps only one will start.

But, there a few who could push returners, especially at positions such as offensive and defensive line, where graduation has decimated the two-deep.

Here's an early look at what next year's depth chart might look like and how the incoming recruits fit into the puzzle.


Thumbnail image for DENARD-ROBINSON-IND.jpg

Denard Robinson

Starters lost: None
Projected starter: Denard Robinson
In the mix: Devin Gardner
Recruiting class: None
Breakdown: There's been some talk Robinson will switch to another position, or that Gardner should at least challenge for the position outright. That's silly. Robinson is the starter, and there's no equivocations there. Of course, Gardner could continue to see the field in "deuce" formations, with Robinson lined up elsewhere, and that set might be employed more often than last year. And don't be surprised to see it expanded, with Robinson actually running routes.

It's usually a rule of thumb that a program should take at least one quarterback per class, but not getting one is OK here. Michigan has an entrenched starter in a senior Robinson, and a clear heir in a junior Gardner, with top 2013 prospect Shane Morris already locked up for next year's class.

Offensive line

Thumbnail image for KyleKalis_Mug.jpg

Kyle Kalis

Starters lost: C David Molk, RT Mark Huyge
Projected starters: LT Taylor Lewan, LG Ricky Barnum, C Rocko Khoury, RG Patrick Omameh, RT Michael Schofield
In the mix: Chris Bryant, Jack Miller, Kyle Kalis, Ben Braden, Elliott Mealer
Recruiting class (4): Kyle Kalis, Ben Braden, Erik Magnuson, Blake Bars
Breakdown: Depth is tenuous here, which is why Kalis and/or Braden might find their way onto the field as true freshmen. There's no doubt the staff would prefer to redshirt them, but that is a luxury the Wolverines might not be afforded with the departures of Molk and Huyge.

Offensive line coach Darrell Funk was clear Wednesday that none of the incoming recruits were brought in to play center, which means Michigan will be forced to turn to a returner there. Khoury and Miller are mostly toss-ups to replace Molk, a tough assignment after the departing senior won the Rimington Trophy last year as the nation's best center.

At right tackle, things become a little more interesting. Most likely, the Wolverines will move Schofield back here after he spent most of last season filling in at left guard for the oft-injured Barnum. However, should Barnum be moved to center — and there seems to be some possibility of this — then Schofield likely would stay at left guard and either Kalis (a five-star who measures 6-5, 305 pounds) or Braden (6-6, 319 pounds) would be forced into the lineup.

Either way, Bryant and Kalis likely will be the primary reserves at the non-center spots. Magnuson has tremendous top-end potential, and projects to be the team's successor to Lewan at left tackle. However, at 6-foot-6, 275 pounds, he has to first develop his physique.

Tight ends
Starters lost: Kevin Koger, Steve Watson
Projected starter: Brandon Moore
In the mix: A.J. Williams, Ricardo Miller
Recruiting class (2): A.J. Williams, Devin Funchess
Breakdown: Michigan loses everything here in Koger, a team captain who departs after starting 31 games and recording 59 catches. The Wolverines' returners combine for two career catches, both by Moore.

Moore will be the leader to start here, but expect Williams — whom Funk said will not be switching to the offensive line — to see the field at least as the second tight end. He also could challenge Moore for the primary tight end role. Funchess is a better pass-catcher than Williams, but also needs more polishing. He could redshirt, particularly if he doesn't find a home on special teams.

Starters lost: Junior Hemingway, Darryl Stonum
Projected starters: Roy Roundtree, Jeremy Gallon, Amara Darboh
In the mix: Jerald Robinson, Drew Dileo, Jeremy Jackson, Jehu Chesson
Recruiting class (2): Amara Darboh, Jehu Chesson
Breakdown: The receiving corps were inconsistent last year (not that it was all their fault), as Wolverines quarterbacks completed just 155 passes, a 22-year low. Now, they lose their top-two wideouts in Hemingway (graduation) and Stonum (dismissal).

Among returners, only Roundtree has put together an impactful season, and that came two years ago. He had 19 catches in 2011. He is expected to start next year alongside the up-and-comer Gallon.

That means there is a hole for one starter, and it likely will be filled with a bigger body (Roundtree is 6-foot, Gallon is 5-8). Although Robinson will be the early leader for the spot, Darboh could, in time, become the one true freshman to start on offense. Receivers coach Jeff Hecklinski is impressed with his hands, and Darboh also has a terrific combination of size (6-2, 200 pounds) and speed (4.42-second 40-yard dash).

Starters lost: None
Projected starter: Fitz Toussaint
In the mix: Vincent Smith, Thomas Rawls, Stephen Hopkins
Recruiting class (2): Drake Johnson, Dennis Norfleet
Breakdown: Toussaint broke onto the Big Ten scene last year, averaging 135.6 yards per game after being awarded the featured back role for the Purdue game. He rushed for at least 100 yards in all but one of those five games, finished with more than 1,000 yards overall and is anchored as the starter.

Smith will factor in as the third-down back, especially on true passing downs because he is the team's best blocker. He also is dangerous on screens. Rawls, coming off his true freshman season, could also fit into the rotation if his consistency improves, especially in the blocking schemes.

Johnson likely will redshirt. Norfleet likely won't see time on offense, but Hoke said Wednesday he could compete to absorb Stonum's spot in the return games.

Starters lost: John McColgan (although he lost his spot midway through the season)
Projected starter: Stephen Hopkins
In the mix: Sione Houma
Recruiting class (1): Sione Houma
Breakdown: Hopkins usurped McColgan for the starting duties midway through last season, and showcased versatility (blocking, rushing, receiving) at the position. He is putting on weight in the off-season, and will be the guy. Houma is the Wolverines' first true fullback recruit since Vince Helmuth in 2007, but will play only if needed. He is a likely redshirt as he bulks up (he's listed at 6-foot, 215 pounds).

Special teams
Starters lost: None
Projected starters: Matt Wile on kickoffs and punts, Brendan Gibbons on field goals
In the mix: Will Hagerup
Recruiting class: None
Breakdown: Hagerup was suspended four games to begin last season, then never found the form that made him a star as a freshman. He struggled so badly, in fact, that Wile took over the punting duties midway through the Sugar Bowl, something Hoke would not have done if Wile wasn't truly pushing (exceeding?) Hagerup for this spot. It'll be a battle that will persist throughout fall camp, but expect Wile to emerge.

Defensive line
Starters lost: Mike Martin, Will Heininger, Ryan Van Bergen
Projected starters: Craig Roh, Will Campbell, Ondre Pipkins, Jibreel Black
In the mix: Frank Clark, Nathan Brink, Quinton Washington, Richard Ash, Chris Wormley
Recruiting class (6): Ondre Pipkins, Chris Wormley, Tom Strobel, Matt Godin, Mario Ojemudia, Willie Henry
Breakdown: This is, without question, the biggest point of concern heading into next season. The line play was terrific last year, but it was a long process to get there, despite having stalwarts such as Martin and Van Bergen with which to work. Now, Michigan loses both of those guys, as well as Heininger, and must start from scratch.

The depth in the middle is troublesome. Campbell is a former five-star and showed measured growth last season, but has yet to round into a consistent player heading into his senior season. Coaches say Washington already is one of the strongest players on the team, but he has no experience.

It might be up to Pipkins to become the stop-gap in the middle. He's bursting with potential, but few true freshmen are impactful players in the trenches. He also is 6-foot-3, 320 pounds, which means he probably will have to lose some weight to become an every-down player.

At end, things are a little more promising. The team loses Van Bergen, but has three capable players at the other end in Roh, Black and Clark. One could slide over to the other end to get the best four in the lineup at the same time.

Starters lost: None
Projected starters: Jake Ryan, Kenny Demens, Desmond Morgan
In the mix: Brennen Beyer, Brandin Hawthorne, Joe Bolden
Recruiting class (4): Bolden, Kaleb Ringer, Royce Jenkins-Stone, James Ross
Breakdown: Linebacker might be Michigan's deepest position heading into future years, with every starter returning next year and a talented incoming group bolstering the depth. Ryan was fantastic as a redshirt freshman, and should be even better after a year of seasoning. Demens was solid in the middle, and his grasp of the defense's language can't be ignored (he's responsible for most playcalls). Morgan was fine as a true freshman, but will be pushed by Hawthorne and perhaps Bolden for his job.

In future years, Jenkins-Stone and Ross could become a pair of heavy-hitters for the Wolverines. They might have found roles if they were coming in last season, but the depth at the position could allow them to redshirt next year. Position coach Mark Smith said no decisions have been made, although did say Bolden and Ringer are ahead of schedule as early enrollees and will slot at corner spots.

Starters lost: None
Projected starters: Blake Countess, J.T. Floyd
In the mix: Courtney Avery, Raymon Taylor
Recruiting class (1): Terry Richardson
Breakdown: Floyd had a breakout season after losing much of 2010 to injury. He filed for the NFL draft advisory board, but wisely returned to school. Playing alongside the burgeoning Countess should allow Floyd to take another step forward next year.

Countess, for his part, will try to avoid a sophomore slump after becoming Michigan's best freshman a year ago. He has great instincts and close-out speed, and he will form a solid 1-2 punch with Floyd.

It will be interesting to see how the coaches uses Taylor. They were higher on him than most freshmen last year, although he had a hard time getting onto the field because of Countess. He could push Avery as the primary nickel back.

Richardson is one of the most talented players in his class, but likely will redshirt because he's not really needed, and he's the only corner in his class.

Starters lost: Troy Woolfolk
Projected starters: Jordan Kovacs, Thomas Gordon
In the mix: Marvin Robinson, Josh Furman
Recruiting class (3): Jarrod Wilson, Allen Gant, Jeremy Clark
Breakdown: Michigan loses Woolfolk, but returns Gordon, who was more effective anyway. His opportunistic play — he led the Big Ten in fumble recoveries — was a big plus in the secondary, and he developed a strong rapport with Kovacs, who has become one of the league's best safeties. The former walk-on is a lock to become a captain heading into his third season as a starter.

Depth could be an issue. Robinson played in just five games as a sophomore last year while dealing with legal issues, and Furman, a redshirt freshman, played only in mop-up time.

Wilson is considered the top athlete of the three freshmen (he's 6-foot-2, taller than any starter in the secondary), but also is raw and would be well-served by taking a redshirt. His early enrollment, though, could make him a candidate for special teams. And, Hoke showed last year with Delonte Hollowell that he's OK with burning a redshirt if a freshman is good enough to contribute on special teams.

Kyle Meinke covers Michigan football for He can be reached at 734-623-2588, by email at and followed on Twitter @kmeinke.



Fri, Feb 3, 2012 : 12:23 a.m.

burton163 Hope you're right. The kid's got a very good arm and throws better than either Denard or Devin while on the run. He's also deceptively fast and I think he will push Devin if the coaches truly play the best players.

Terry Star21

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 8:07 p.m.

Great picture - the players can't wait to get out on the and great research on the positions, they are very correct. The speed that Norfleet posses is scary from what I've seen - wether he is faster than DRob, we'll see. I'm most interested in the center position, it takes a while to master and we are so spoiled by Molk's impressive/near perfect talent. Pipkin's is so impressive, I believe he is NFL prepped. This morning Coach Hoke referred to him a 'Pee-Wee'.....what, seriously ? He didn't appear to be joking, but who knows. Hoke possess that rare talent missed in coaching when one can joke to keep the camp enjoyable then a second latter command the discipline and upmost respect from his charges. You have to love this. The Michigan Football Family is at peace once again, more relaxed yet as much eager as anything to consume anything Michigan football related. The early ticket sales for Bama, to priority point season ticket holders must be going great because @ 8:30 am this morning the two higher priced tickets were gone leaving just the $125.00 (yes I know, expensive) tickets remaining. We will be strong and well represented @ Cowboy Stadium this September. MgoBlueForTim........"A sign the Michigan football program is starting to turn the corner"? - good idea, but we're way past that now........looking for crystal and #1 (hey, where is Theo ?)


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 4:54 p.m.

In the mix at tailabck includes Justice Hayes, for me. Dennis Norfleet should make a high impact on kick off and punt recieving. I am really hoping Roy Roundtree will step at reciever up but I like the recruits of Darboh and Chesson. One concern in who will replace Dave Molk at Center. That might be the biggest blaring weakenss left from the graduating senior class. We will have to wait until at least spring ball to get a clue. I think Team 133 will be in good shape. Very good analysis, keep up the good work.

Terry Star21

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 8:12 p.m.

MR...right about center - this takes time to master. You must have saw video like I of Norfleet - this kickoff/punt return is a crucial need. I was telling people DRob would have been great here, but one hit and done - Norfleet will be worth the ticket price.

Matt Patercsak

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 6:12 p.m.

Justice Hayes will move to the slot. He is just too small. unless he gets up to the 200lb range he will never see significant time at half back. Thomas Rawls is a safer bet. Even Drake Johnson has a better shot, realistically.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 5:54 p.m.

Problem with Roundtree this year seem to be more on the throwing end than on catching or being open. I hope that DR improves that aspect--it will make Roundtree much more dangerous. And don't forget about Gallon, and what's the Dileo. Remember about Molk: He was a rookie once, too. So was Everett, Vitale, etc. Replacing his leadership, though, is a HUGE concern. He was special that way.

Irvine CA

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 4:34 p.m.

We should run 2 TE, like the New England Patriots. With Robinson's run and passing threats, a 2 TE formation will be very hard to match.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 8:58 p.m.

I was thinking the same thing. Wonder if Borges have been following what Brady and bellichek have turned their tight ends into. Revolutionary- even if out of necessity.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 4:24 p.m.

Norfleet (of foot) could be huge in the return game. He just blew by Denard as the fasted guy on the team. Oh and he has great moves.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 10:21 p.m.

Norfleet isn't even on campus yet. I'll believe he blows by Denard when I see it on the field, not by what is written in the papers. And yes he is fast and looks good agaisnt other highschoolers, but things even out in college.

Terry Star21

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 8:15 p.m.

Agree with Scott and Matt - size may be small on Norfleet, but character and toughness huge....well see I guess......MUCH needed position - when was the last runback TD (Stoneum vs ND ?)

Matt Patercsak

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 6:38 p.m.

McGuffy was also white...generally over hyped, and way out of place. I don't care how big Norfleet it, he's built like a rock and is no doubt faster than mcguffie. and more football-athletic. He'll do well as a return man


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 5:57 p.m.

dudes 5-5 , 145lbs. Yeah he's listed 5-7, 165. Do you remember Mcguffey vs OSU on the kickoff return? That was the last game he ever played for UM. One hit, he can kiss his career goodbye.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 4:15 p.m.

That american flag needs to become a permanent fixture on the UofM jerseys.

Terry Star21

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 8:16 p.m.

Yes !!!!!!


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 4:15 p.m.

Any time that you have to play frosh on the O-line, you are in trouble. That is a big spot where the youth have to develop muscle and bulk, not to mention the intricacies of footwork and leverage. Probably the biggest change from HS to college is at OL, just in terms of ability to bulldoze people (or not). @rightmind: take it easy on Countess (though I think based on your comments, you are not really in the Michigan camp anyway). Countess was great for most of last year, and he will get better. The secondary at many schools gets exposed when the front line can't get enough pressure on the QB and that is often what happened last year in those games. You critique the DBs against Ohio, VTech, and ND--yet what was the end result of all 3? Wins. I'll take critique with wins much above great defensive stats and losses (just ask VTech about that).


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 10:17 p.m.

HeartbreakM I agree. I saw Countess and Avery make some awesome athletic moves throughout the year and have every confidence in their maturing process here at Michigan. Sure they got burnt here and there, who dosen't? Even Woodson got burnt. Every time we complete a pass that must mean the other teams DB's got burnt. On the linemen issue, a lot of people forget that when these players show up, they are kids. 4 years later they are men. Those are the years their bodies and bones are still growing and they are capable of pounding on the muscle. Sometimes I wonder if everybody has this playstation mentality that a freshman is going to be just sooooo awesome. Thats the way it is on playstation isn't it?

Terry Star21

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 8:19 p.m.

Agree somewhat about frosh - but gee, just have the feeling this Kalis on O and Pipkins on D aren't just freshmen (maybe NFL freshman) a good feeling, we'll see.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 7:18 p.m.

Countess the best? Not as a frosh, and probably not as a soph either. But he will be a good one. And Kovacs plays smart football, which I will always take. That is such a tough position because you get hung out to dry, but I like what we have. And it's funny--I really like Martin, Heininger, and RVB but they didn't totally dominate like I thought they could have (on paper). But when they did, it changed games--like the Sugar Bowl or the Northwestern game.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 5:54 p.m.

Michigan had a good year, obviously luck had a lot to do with it. We were talking about the db skills though. My argument was yeah, Countess was great as long as the other team had no passing attack. I agree UM's d-line was somewhat weak thats why Mattison blitzed Kovacs on obvious passing downs. That and the fact Kovacs is worthless trying to defend the pass. I believe Countess will be a good corner, but he is far from the best in the conference. By the way how is he going to improve when UM loses the 2 best d-lineman? He's still going to have to defend too long.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 4:13 p.m.

Roger Bellomy could see playing time in 2014, depending on how quickly Shane Morris develops. It takes longer to develop a "pro style" QB than a pure athlete like Denard. Bellomy is tall enough and has a good enough arm to be a very good QB. And he's not a block of cement - good athlete. If they red shirted Morris next year- that could still give him three years to start. Remember Tom Brady. didn't start until his senior year.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 8:55 p.m.

Your right. Wow- and i don't even smoke medical marijuana.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 5:21 p.m.

Brady started every game his junior and senior year.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 3:52 p.m.

Thanks Kyle for an excellent story; you covered "the waterfront". Please keep these coming.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 3:26 p.m.

burton. . . i agree. . . if you watch film on bellomy the kids got game! GO BLUE!!!!!!


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 3:04 p.m.

any word on gardners redshirt from his freshman year?


Sat, Feb 4, 2012 : 6:23 p.m.

@ bigblue...oh yeah this is Michigan. A place where settling for less in the modo. You want a NC, you better get creative with your offense otherwise youll consistantly be a top 10 to 15 team. . Thats nice and safe for Hoke and Borgess to keep thier jobs with an underachieving fan base. Hate OSU as much as you want , but atleast they compete for NCs. With Meyer as the new coach you are going to see what thinking out of the box is all about. Thats how you win. Prostyle is safe and for cowards.


Fri, Feb 3, 2012 : 5:56 a.m.

Hey Ted, what do you think there gonna do, fire Al and hire a spread OC? Keep dreaming buddy. After Denard graduates you will see little to none of your beloved zone read. This is Michigan remember??


Fri, Feb 3, 2012 : 3:16 a.m.

Hopefully Shane is not Henne. Henne was an above average college qb, but he never did anything great for Michigan. Bellomy appears to be mobile and hopefullty he can be used in a read option when finally Borgess gets fired.

Terry Star21

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 8:22 p.m.

Might not matter, Gardner could be a great teacher for Shane (maybe redshirt ?) coming in and with any luck - Shane is the next Leach/Henne - we'll see !

Matt Patercsak

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 6:35 p.m.

I hope he doesn't get it. out with the old, in with the new!! Russel Bellomy should be getting reps!

Kyle Meinke

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 3:37 p.m.

bigblue, no decision will be made until before his senior season. He very well could get it, but my gut tells me he won't.

Matt Patercsak

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 2:27 p.m.

I'm not SUPER worried about the defensive line, lately it seems that the group with the biggest question mark, later becomes the strength (ie Linebackers in 2011). Overall I'm really exited about next season. I think our running game should be a little better, Hopefully hopkins is up to a beefy 245 by august!! I'd like to see Thomas Rawls get more carries, I think he was suffering from freshman syndrome, a little wide eyed and star struck. He needs to run like he belongs on the field, which I know he can do. I also wouldnt be surprised if Drake Johnson ends up in the mix. he's just too big and fast and athletic. If he adds around 5-10 pounds he could challenge for PT. my two weaknesses for team 133 are as follows. 1) speed in the secondary (i love kovacs, but bless his soul he's not a speed burner) 2)offensive line, mark my words there will be issues of people wanting Kalis to take someone's job. Im looking forward to a wakeup call in Texas....


Fri, Feb 3, 2012 : 3:42 a.m.

Id like to see Rawls in the mix as well, and I agree about Kovacs. He is very smart, and plays hard as anyone, but is not the most athletic. But overall, I think he and the rest of the secondary will have a solid year. Your right about RR and his lack of O line and D line size, but at least Hoke is addressing it, even though for this year it may still be an issue.

Matt Patercsak

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 6:10 p.m.

its not so much the holes we have to fill with Molk and Huyge gone. Its the personnel. aside from Lewan, I don't think any of the lineman are the caliber that we need. maybe scoefield is ok, he still needs to add some weight. but barnum and omameh are weak guards. If RR really messed up anything recruiting wise it was lineman. so undersized. i dont care what style of football you want to play, smaller lineman is a bad idea, simply because if you reach elite status, there will eventually be bigger lineman that line up against them. there is no fad, or trend of small lineman, it will not become "a thing", its just a goofy idea to support what Michigan football once called "communist football"


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 4:19 p.m.

I would be too but look what Mattison and Hoke did with the line from 2010 to 2011. Guy will step up. Maybe not Campbell, but some guys with fire in the belly. I have to believe the O line will make up for the loss of Molk overall but do we have anyone who can play center? No one has shown a thing at that critical position. Molk on one leg was better than the alternative.

Ted Bundy

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 2:36 p.m.

Hmmm, interesting. I guess I feel much better about our secondary than you. I totally agree with your #2, losing Molk is huuuuuuuge. We all saw Khoury for three "snaps" in the Sugar Bowl... I will never doubt Kovacs or worry about him again, hes earned my trust. And yes, we are gonna get a HUUUUUUUUGE wake up call in Texas...


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 2:27 p.m.

Ross is not an early enrollee. That would be Boldon and Ringer.

Kyle Meinke

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 3:36 p.m.

Brent, thanks for pointing out the typo. I fixed it.

Ted Bundy

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 1:58 p.m.

My "two cents": Big Will and Ondre Pipkins are both nose tackles, in the base 4-3 under there is a NT and DT(two different positions). I would agree that Pipkins could rotate behind Big Will and maybe in some goal line formations line up next to him. But with my understanding of the UM defense, a guy like Washington or Brink will be starting at DT. I agree that Roh will move over to the strong side defensive end(7 tech?), letting Black and Clark rotate at weakside defensive end. Ryan and Beyer at the SAM position is nasty, we are set for three years. Does Bolden back up Demens and let Morgan and Hawthorne fight it out for the WILL? I think we need a backup for Demens at the MIKE more than a third guy at WILL dont you guys think? Cornerbacks are pretty much set, I think we will have the best defensive backfield in the Big Ten. I hope Marv Robinson pulls it together and contributes finally. Furman is coming along, ya gotta love his potential. We could have a legit two deep at the cornerback and safety positions, which is exciting after "the dark years". Where does Cam Gordon play?!?!?! SAM still? Poor guy... Go Blue!

Ted Bundy

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 6:32 p.m.

rightmind250- If O$U's cornerbacks are better than Michigan's, than how did they let Denard throw 14 of 17(82.4%) for 167 yards and 3 TDs? Those are pretty impressive stats for a guy considered "a running back" by trade. Not to mention his 160 yards rushing and 2 TDs on the ground. And UM did stop Braxton, they stopped him from winning...


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 5:20 p.m.

Ted, I wouldn't want or expect you to do anything illegal, hence the medical variety. OSU, PSU and MSU all have better db's. Um didn't play wiscy. they had an awesome passing game. Iowa had a mediocre passing attack and it destroyed those guys also. I am just saying anytime they were tested, they failed. If UM's defense in the OSU game was designed to stop braxton, they failed miserably. He had 250 passing and 100 running. The kid didn't pass for more than about 70 yards in any game prior. I am sure OSU had a plan to limit Denard in that game, but I wouldn't get on here and say that it was successful................just sayin

Ted Bundy

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 4:21 p.m.

Rightmind250- I'm flattered that a rival takes time in his day to contribute to a Michigan football discussion. You are correct that Countess got burnt by Po$ey in the O$U game, hes a true freshman though and Po$ey is a senior. O$U lost to purdue... Teams implode, it happens, thays why we play the game. O$U had success throwing the ball because UM's defensive strategy was to stop the run, particulary Braxton. VT had one of the best running backs in the nation and a mobile quarterback so again our defense was keying in on the run, thus allowing passing oppurtunities. Who's secondary do you like better next year? And no I have a job so I cant smoke marijuana.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 3:49 p.m.

Ted, You sound like you understand the game a bit but I am not in agreement with your assessment of the d-backs. UM had trouble with every team that passed on them. ND imploded or you got beat there. The last 2 games OSU and VT they got burned bad. Posey made Countess look pathetic. OSU and VT were starting freshman Qb's. They are obviously going to get better but people saying UM has the best D-backs in the B10? You must be smoking some of that medical marjiuana.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 1:57 p.m.

My dark horse candidate that no one talks about? Russel Bellomy will be in the mix for playing time @ QB. Book it.


Fri, Feb 3, 2012 : 3:36 a.m.

Id be surprised to ever see him start. Drob starts all year. Book it.


Fri, Feb 3, 2012 : 3:28 a.m.

If Borgess gets fired by 2013 then the sky is the limit for Bellamy . he is a great read option qb with really good form


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 11:35 p.m.

I agree Burton, I think that guy is talented and really smart. His film was very impressive, can throw on the run and is fast and a good scrambler. Wouldn't be surprised in the least bit to see him excel.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 6:16 p.m.

I've been wondering about him, too... It'd be interesting to see him make some visible gains.

Matt Patercsak

Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 2:22 p.m.

that would be awesome


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 1:56 p.m.

This was an exceptional class of recruits, therefore, I visualize more freshmen than last year burning their redshirt. Pipkins, Kalis, Williams, and Braden look like solid competitors from the get go. Houma might be too good to leave on the bench. Darboh is dangerous. Bolden has recently been the talk of the town. Matt Godin is one tough hombre. Every one of these 25 players has enough talent to make it onto the field. It all depends on which guys want playing time the most and are willing to earn their spot.


Thu, Feb 2, 2012 : 1:53 p.m.

I wouldnt be surprised if Bolden challenged for a starting spot over Morgan. After seeing his highlights in HS and his under armor game it is clear the guy is talented and already possesses the physical ability to play. Enrolling early will also put him ahead of the curve. I also think Pipkins has a very big opportunity for a spot in the DT rotation. Kalis seems like he could already be an injury away from significant playing time as well. Theres always surprises so only time will tell. I cant wait for this coming season to get started, the future looks bright in AA. Go blue!