|Jehu Chesson goes bowling (image via Gregg Henson)|
Weight: 195 lbs.
High school: St. Louis (MO) Ladue Horton Watkins
Position: Wide receiver
Class: Redshirt sophomore
Jersey number: #86
Last year: I ranked Chesson #35 and said he would be a backup wide receiver with 12 catches for 150 yards and 1 touchdown. He started two games and finished with 15 catches for 221 yards and 1 touchdown; 2 carries for 1 yard; 2 kickoff returns for 36 yards; and 9 tackles.
Chesson's 2013 season seemed to represent a steady uphill climb, in my opinion. Early in the season, he had trouble adjusting to the ball in the air, but he made his presence felt as a devastating blocker (see the above gif). As the season wore on, he improved his route running and ball skills, but by that point, quarterback Devin Gardner had two very effective favorite targets in wideouts Jeremy Gallon and Devin Funchess. He had a nice 33-yard catch-and-run against Akron where he bounced off a tackle attempt before sprinting down the left sideline, and he also had a standout 58-yard catch against Michigan State. On top of blocking and receiving, he made 9 tackles on special teams coverage. He appears to be a pretty well rounded football player going into his redshirt sophomore season.
Chesson does not appear to be a potential breakout star this fall, but he should be a quality third or fourth option for the Wolverines. Funchess returns and is a Biletnikoff Award candidate, but the other possibilities are unproven in redshirt sophomore Amara Darboh (sidelined last year with a broken foot) and freshman Freddy Canteen (a freshman, I say!), plus a whole host of redshirt freshmen (freshmen!) and true freshmen (when I was young, I knew everything). Darboh was a Gardner favorite until his injury, and Canteen was the darling of spring practice. I hesitate to call for Chesson to break out, because Gardner - for better or worse - seems to really trust his synergy with certain guys, and Chesson does not appear to be one of those guys. But slow and steady wins the race, so I expect to see the Missourian catching, blocking, and tackling like the solid football player he is.
Prediction: 18 catches, 220 yards, 2 touchdowns