Weight: 218 lbs.
High school: Bloomfield Hills (MI) Brother Rice
Jersey number: #12
Last year: Malzone was a senior in high school. He was 211/325 for 2,998 yards and 38 touchdowns. He was a 247 Composite 4-star, the #13 pro-style quarterback, and #295 overall.
Malzone committed to Michigan in the spring of 2014, and it was a source of some consternation for Michigan fans. Also an accomplished baseball player, he was not extremely well regarded as a quarterback recruit and had a hitch in his throwing motion that worried some analysts. Many Michigan fans thought Brady Hoke and his staff should have waited longer on some of the big fish instead of offering Malzone, who was a shoo-in to commit. Brother Rice fell short of a state championship, but he had a stellar season throwing to eventual Michigan-bound receiver Grant Perry.
Malzone skipped his senior year of baseball to enroll at Michigan in January. He received some mixed reviews during spring practice, but Jim Harbaugh supposedly warmed up to him because of how quickly he picked up the offense and the dedication he showed. When Michigan held an intrasquad scrimmage for the spring game, Malzone headed up one of the squads. The defense is always ahead of the offensie in the spring, so it was tough to glean much. However, things moved a little too quickly for Malzone, and he currently lacks the arm strength to push the ball down the field or fit it into tight spaces. Not only did he look to be behind junior Shane Morris, but freshman Zach Gentry is on his way into town, and fifth year Iowa transfer Jake Rudock will likely be the starter. It seems that Malzone will be no higher than third on the depth chart, and with both Rudock and Morris available, it would make sense to redshirt the freshman.
Prediction: Redshirt if possible
I think it's fairly clear that Rudock is 1, Morris is his backup, and then the 3rd QB spot is open between the two freshman and Speight. How one rates the three contenders for third string is highly subjective.ReplyDelete
Typically, you want your 3rd stringer to be ready to play if needed - we saw both Michigan and Ohio State need their 3rd stringers for a bit last year - so getting some garbage time snaps for a young kid can be helpful. It would not shock me to see a freshman QB burn his red-shirt.
If that comes to pass - I hope it is Malzone, not Gentry. Gentry has the higher ceiling and therefore it's more important that Michigan retains the possibility of getting him for a 5th year. That said, I agree with putting Malzone behind Gentry. Malzone was generally lower ranked and had an unimpressive offer list. It can be argued that Gentry is more raw (and therefore less prepared for 2015 contribution) but the talent he has makes him potentially more valuable to this team. In other words, I think Gentry will be better by the end of the year, but not right away.
If serious injuries hit the QB position, I see two different scenarios:
If the injuries are short-term, it doesn't matter that much if it's Malzone or Speights, and Gentry can keep his red-shirt. If the injuries are long-term, then Gentry may be the best guy. (Making him more important to the team than Malzone)... But lets hope that doesn't happen.
Don't sell Malzone short (no pun intended). He is a gamer and going to get stronger. He is going to be a legitimate contender for the starting qb down the line at UM.ReplyDelete