Wednesday, July 3, 2013

2013 Season Countdown: #57 Brian Cleary

Brian Cleary
Name: Brian Cleary
Height: 6'3"
Weight: 199 lbs.
High school: Detroit (MI) Jesuit
Position: Quarterback
Class: Redshirt freshman
Jersey number: #6
Last year: I didn't rank Cleary. He did not see game action.

Cleary was a total afterthought for everyone . . . until backup quarterback Russell Bellomy tore his ACL in the spring. With class of 2013 quarterback Shane Morris not arriving until June, Cleary was immediately thrust into the #2 quarterback role for the spring game. He performed adequately, but most observers are probably rightfully a little bit concerned that Cleary might have to take the reins at some point.

The battle between Morris and Cleary to back up Devin Gardner might be an interesting one. Cleary has an edge in experience, especially because Morris missed a good chunk of time due to mononucleosis his senior year. Cleary knows the playbook better and has practiced against Michigan's defense. That might not be enough to hold off Morris, who has a cannon for an arm and some pretty good athleticism. In all likelihood, Michigan is probably going to be in very bad shape if Gardner goes down for any significant length of time.

Prediction: #3 quarterback, at least by the end of the season


  1. I'm not yet convinced that Cleary is significantly better than the other backup QBs, let alone Morris.

  2. A few hundred people on MGoBlog have debated this, so you guys may as well, too. Assuming Morris progresses well in camp (to the point where he's very obviously a better option than Cleary et al.), how do you handle the redshirt issue? Forget it entirely and give him ample reps during the easy phase of the schedule? Or, roll the dice a bit and try to preserve the RS?

    1. If Bellomy were healthy, I would be in support of redshirting Morris. Or at least giving Bellomy another shot to be the backup if something were to happen to Gardner. But now I think Morris has to play this year and get some snaps. Even if Gardner stays healthy enough to take every snap this year, there's potential that he'll leave after 2013 or that he'll get hurt next year. Someone needs to be ready.

  3. If Gardner stays for his 5th year, Morris could redshirt his sophomore season. Bellomy would be in his 4th year and hopefully a solid back-up QB.

  4. I really do not understand the whole notion that Morris is an option to be the #2 backup QB. Borges has stated at virtually every opportunity that it takes a full year for ANY OB to learn the offense. In Denard's case he got virtually every possible snap to the detriment of the back up QBs in 2011 to help him climb the learning curve. Whether or not Morris is red shirted he will not see that percentage of snaps and if called upon to step in to run the offense will not be ready. Now if, God forbid, Gardner suffers a season ending injury in the first or second game, then by all means go with Morris and work to give him the playing time to mature as rapidly as possible, otherwise based on everything Borges has told us, Morris is not an effective option in 2013 and should be red shirted.