Saturday, December 31, 2022

CFP Semifinal Preview: Michigan Pass Defense vs. TCU Pass Offense


Quentin Johnston (image via TCU)

Previously: Michigan Rush O vs. TCU Rush D (LINK), Michigan Pass O vs. TCU Pass D (LINK), Michigan Rush D vs. TCU Rush O (LINK), Miscellaney (LINK)

The Wolverines are #22 in pass defense (191.8 yards allowed/game) and they rank #5 in yards allowed per attempt (5.8). They rank #4 in passing efficiency defense and have allowed just 9 touchdowns while making 12 interceptions. It's a very good unit overall, even though Purdue's Charlie Jones went off for 13 catches and 162 yards in the Big Ten Championship Game. Freshman Will Johnson has developed into Michigan's best corner (25 tackles, 2 TFL, 3 INT, 2 PBU), but D.J. Turner II is probably an NFL draft pick, Gemon Green is a starting quality player, and slot corner Mike Sainristil has wowed everyone this season. On the back end, sophomore Rod Moore is tied for the team lead with 3 picks. The pass rush has been present but sometimes inconsistent, especially with leading sacker Mike Morris (21 tackles, 11 TFL, 7.5 sacks) missing the last couple games due to injury; he is reportedly back practicing with the team and healthy. Otherwise, pass rush specialist Eyabi Okie (4.5 sacks) and outside linebacker Jaylen Harrell (3.5 sacks) are the most consistent rushers.

TCU has an explosive passing offense. They're #25 in passing yardage (273 yards/game) but #5 in passing efficiency and #9 in yards per attempt (8.8). Quarterback Max Duggan (6'2", 210) has completed 64.9% of his throws for 3,321 yards, 30 touchdowns, and 4 interceptions. He was not considered the starter to begin the season under new coach Sonny Dykes, but he took over the gig in week two and never looked back. Junior receiver Quentin Johnston (6'4", 215) is the star with 53 catches for 903 yards and 5 touchdowns, but there are several capable targets with senior Taye Barber (5'10", 190), senior Derius Davis (5'10", 175), and junior Savion Williams (6'5", 215) all having 29-35 catches and 4-5 touchdowns. Senior tight end Jared Wiley (6'7", 255) has 21 catches for 225 yards and 4 scores. TCU is tied at #50 with 1.77 sacks given up per game. Dykes is a disciple of Hal Mumme and Mike Leach, so he runs an up-tempo Air Raid offense.

Advantage: Michigan. TCU will make plays through the air, but Michigan did a pretty good job of shutting down Ohio State's high-flying passing attack. The X factor is Duggan's ability to run. If the defensive line can't keep him in check, then the threat of the quarterback run could open things up on the back end.

Site News: 2022 Year in Review


(image via Pinterest)

Here are the posts that garnered the most comments in 2022:

  1. Michigan 41, Penn State 17
  2. Michigan 31, Indiana 10
  3. Goodbye, Chris Hinton, Jr.
  4. Michigan 45, Ohio State 23
  5. Michigan 34, Nebraska 3
  6. Michigan 34, Maryland 27
  7. Preview: Michigan vs. Illinois
  8. Michigan vs. Maryland Awards
  9. Preview: Michigan vs. Michigan State
  10. Preview of 2023 In-State Recruiting: #1-5

As usual, the post-game threads generally garner the most attention. But there was also a lively discussion when saying goodbye to Chris Hinton, Jr.

Happy Holidays!

Friday, December 30, 2022

CFP Semifinal Preview: Michigan vs. TCU Miscellaney


(image via Pro Dance Cheer)

Previously: Michigan Rush O vs. TCU Rush D (LINK), Michigan Pass O vs. TCU Pass D (LINK), Michigan Rush D vs. TCU Rush O (LINK)

Please support TTB by using the links here from Amazon (LINK):

Now for a look at TCU's roster and team history:

TCU players offered by Michigan include: WR D.J. Allen, S Chace Biddle, S D'Arco Perkins-McAllister, LB Landyn Watson, DT Damonic Williams, RB Corey Wren

TCU does not have any players from the State of Michigan.

Michigan has never played TCU. However, Jim Harbaugh is 1-0 against TCU head coach Sonny Dykes. When Dykes was at SMU (2017-2021), Michigan played the Mustangs in 2018 and beat them 45-20 in Ann Arbor. In that game, safety Josh Metellus made a huge interception and returned it 73 yards for an interception as time expired before halftime to make it 21-7 going into the locker room. Quarterback Shea Patterson was 14/18 for 237 yards, 3 touchdowns, and 1 interception. Wide receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones caught all 3 of Patterson's touchdowns. SMU receiver James Proche was the star for the opposition, catching 11 passes for 166 yards and 2 scores.

Interestingly, Dykes never played college football. He was the son of former Texas Tech head football coach Spike Dykes, but Sonny played baseball at Texas Tech before starting his career as a high school baseball coach. He eventually ended up coaching under Hal Mumme at Kentucky and then under Mike Leach at Texas Tech. Overall, Sonny Dykes is 83-64 as a head coach with stints at the following schools:

  • Louisiana Tech (2010-2012): 22-15
  • California (2013-2016): 19-30
  • SMU (2017-2021): 30-18
  • TCU (2022): 12-1

He's 1-3 in bowl games with the lone win coming in the Armed Forces Bowl in 2015 when Cal beat Air Force.

This is TCU's first season without Gary Patterson as head coach since 2001. Patterson went 181-79 from 2001-2021 (technically, he coached TCU's bowl game victory in 2000 after Dennis Franchione left to coach Alabama).

The highest TCU has finished in the polls was when they went 13-0 in 2010, including a 21-19 win over Wisconsin in the Rose Bowl, and were ranked #2 to end the season.

Why are they the Horned Frogs? Here's a blurb from TCU's admissions page (LINK):

The answer goes way back to 1897, when the yearbook staff of the then-named AddRan Christian University was looking to name its annual. Football began at the university the year before, and legend has it that the football field was covered in the small-but-mighty horned lizards. 

Thursday, December 29, 2022

CFP Semifinal Preview: Michigan Rush Defense vs. TCU Rush Offense


TCU running back Kendre Miller (image via ESPN)

If you appreciate TTB, you can support the site by using an Amazon link like this (LINK):

In case you missed it, here are the previews for Michigan's rushing offense (LINK) and passing offense (LINK).

Michigan is #3 in rushing defense (85.2 yards allowed/game) and #5 in yards allowed per attempt (2.92). They have allowed just 7 rushing touchdowns this season, which is tied for #4 in the country. Only four teams all season (Hawaii, Penn State, Illinois, and Ohio State) topped 4.0 yards per carry, and only one of those (PSU) got above 5.0. The defensive unit has been served well by freak nose tackle Mazi Smith, who is playing in this game and has not missed any time despite gun charges being levied against him. Smith has made 45 tackles and 2.5 tackles for loss this season. The leading tackler is middle linebacker Junior Colson, who has 95 tackles, 6 tackles for loss, and 2 sacks. Disruptive defensive end Mike Morris (21 tackles, 11 tackles for loss, 7.5 sacks) is back after getting injured against Illinois. It's a good unit from front to back, but Michigan did have some tackling woes in the Big Ten Championship Game against Purdue, so they will have to be better against some solid runners for TCU.

The primary runner for the Horned Frogs is junior Kendre Miller (6'0", 220 lbs.), who ran 216 times for 1,342 yards (6.21 yards/carry) and 17 touchdowns. In three games against ranked teams this season, Miller ran 67 times for 373 yards and 4 touchdowns. Backup Emari Demercado (5'11", 210) is a senior who has 90 attempts for 472 yards and 5 scores. Another rushing threat is quarterback Max Duggan (6'2", 210) who has 112 attempts for 404 yards and 6 touchdowns. Against Oklahoma and in the Big 12 championship, Duggan ran for over 100 yards; he has good speed and isn't afraid of contact. Despite all the rushing success, TCU had zero linemen on the First Team All-Big 12 unit; however, they did manage to land three players on the second team: redshirt senior left guard Steve Avila (6'4", 330), redshirt senior center Alan Ali (6'5", 300), and redshirt junior right tackle Andrew Coker (6'7", 315). Avila is probably the best of the bunch; Coker plays a little bit high at times, and I think Ali will get pushed around by Mazi Smith. Overall, TCU is #25 in rushing offense (200 yards/game) and #19 in yards per attempt (5.23).

Advantage: Michigan. While TCU is a formidable unit - and Duggan's running is an X factor - there's a reason that Michigan is top five in almost every rushing defense category.

Wednesday, December 28, 2022

CFP Semifinal Preview: Michigan Pass Offense vs. TCU Pass Defense


Trevius Hodges-Tomlinson (image via TCU)

If you look at yesterday's post, I discussed Michigan's run game (LINK).

TCU head coach Sonny Dykes recently stated that stopping Michigan's run game "stops their offense." So apparently they don't have a lot of respect for Michigan's passing game and quarterback J.J. McCarthy. That makes some sense - and it's probably the right approach - but the passing game is not without some playmakers. Overall, Michigan is #92 in passing offense (210.5 yards/game), but they're #24 in passing efficiency and #29 in yards per attempt. For much of the year, McCarthy was at or near the top of the country in completion percentage for a late-season stretch dropped him down to his current spot at #29 at 65.3%. He has thrown 20 touchdowns and just 3 interceptions on 8.3 yards per attempt. Wide receiver Ronnie Bell leads the team with 56 catches for 754 yards, adding in 3 touchdowns. Cornelius Johnson has about half as many catches (30) but twice as many touchdowns (6). Tight end Luke Schoonmaker (34 catches, 386 yards, 3 TD) should be able to play after suffering a shoulder injury, but freshman Colston Loveland has 7 catches for 160 yards and 2 touchdowns in the past few games. The offensive line has been good in pass protection - and McCarthy has the athleticism to escape - so the Wolverines are tied for #11 nationally with just 1 sack allowed per game.

TCU is #83 in pass defense (235.6 yards allowed/game) but #23 in passing efficiency defense. They rank at #45 in yards allowed per attempt (6.8). Kansas, Kansas State, and Baylor have all had big days throwing the ball against the Horned Frogs, but Texas - with its star quarterback and receivers - really struggled. Teams have completed just 53.6% of their passes against them with a total of 19 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. Redshirt sophomore free safety Bud Clark (6'2", 190) leads the team with 4 interceptions, followed by redshirt junior cornerback Josh Newton (6'0", 195) and senior cornerback Trevius Hodges-Tomlinson (5'9", 180) with 3 each. Hodges-Tomlinson was 1st Team All-Big 12 and Newton was 2nd Team, while Clark was Honorable Mention. TCU is #17 in turnover margin (+0.69 per game), so that's how they hold teams down. They're just #76 in sacks, led by senior linebacker Dee Winters (6'1", 230) with 7.5 and senior defensive end Dylan Horton (6'4", 275) with 6.0. Horton is the best natural pass rusher on the team, in my opinion, while Winters is the best blitzer.

Advantage: Push. TCU has a good secondary, but they are propped up by often being able to drop eight guys into coverage while rushing just the three linemen. If they commit more players to the line of scrimmage in order to stop the run, Michigan will have room to operate on the back end against players who might be put in unfamiliar coverages.

Tuesday, December 27, 2022

CFP Semifinal Preview: Michigan Rush Offense vs. TCU Rush Defense


Dylan Horton (image via Draft Network)

Michigan is #5 in rush offense (243 yards/game) and averages 5.64 yards per carry, which is #4 nationally. They have scored 38 touchdowns on the ground, which is tied for #2 in the country. Somewhat amazingly, the running game really hasn't fallen off in the last two games, even though starting running back Blake Corum has missed the vast majority of that time. Backup Donovan Edwards has 47 carries for 401 yards and 3 touchdowns in those two contests against Ohio State and Purdue. It appears that linebacker Kalel Mullings has claimed the #2 running back spot with 9 carries for 27 yards in the last two games. Former third-stringer C.J. Stokes has barely played in that time, and neither has walk-on Isaiah Gash, who got some key plays against Illinois a few games ago. The offensive line - which won the Joe Moore Award for a second straight year - should be mostly intact, though it's unclear whether early-year starting right tackle Trente Jones will return to the starting lineup in place of Karsen Barnhart. The line also includes center Olu Oluwatimi, who won the Rimington and Outland trophies for being the best center and interior lineman, respectively.

TCU is #65 in rush defense (149.5 yards allowed/game) and #67 in yards allowed per carry (4.1). They have allowed 21 touchdowns on the ground, which is tied for #84. They run a 3-3-5 defense, which means they mostly use three defensive linemen and three linebackers, at least until they get into short yardage or goal line situations. The front line consists of freshman nose tackle Damonic Williams (6'2", 320), who was Defensive Rookie of the Year in the Big 12, and two defensive ends that are 275-280 lbs. One of those ends is 6'4", 275 lb. Dylan Horton, a transfer from New Mexico who made 38 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss, and 6 sacks. It's typically not a great defense to play against a team that uses extra linemen and tight ends to create unbalanced sets and extra gaps, because then linebackers and safeties have to fit in new gaps at different angles. Navy transfer weakside linebacker Johnny Hodges (6'2", 240) leads the team with 76 stops, including 7.5 behind the line. Strong safety Mark Perry (6'0", 215) plays off the tight end and is second on the squad with 74 tackles, 6.0 of them for loss. The top seven tacklers are linebackers and safeties, and the first lineman doesn't appear on the list until #9 (Horton); in other words, the linemen just try to eat up blocks until the safeties and linebackers can get there. Horton looks like a pretty good athlete once he gets off of blocks, but playing as a 4i, he doesn't get much of a chance to get loose.

Advantage: Michigan. While TCU did play well against Doak Walker Award winner Bijan Robinson from Texas (12 carries, 29 yards), that was not the norm and Michigan has run the ball against everyone in 2022. Michigan is bigger at the point of attack, and the Wolverines run an offense that TCU simply doesn't see in the Big 12. The Horned Frogs run to the football well, but they are likely to get pushed around once they slam into Michigan's linemen and tight ends.

Sunday, December 25, 2022

2023 Scholarship Count


Michael Barrett

Players are listed in order of remaining eligibility. With 97 scholarships allotted, Michigan is currently beyond its scholarship limit by 12. Meanwhile, 19 seniors are scheduled to graduate, so the 2024 class should have at least 19 players.

  • Added QB Jack Tuttle and TE A.J. Barner, who are transferring in from Indiana.
  • Added LB Hayden Moore and DB D.J. Waller.
  • Added DE Josaiah Stewart, who is transferring in from Coastal Carolina.
  • Added OT Myles Hinton and C Drake Nugent, who are transferring in from Stanford.
  • Added DT Trey Pierce.
  • Added LB Ernest Hausmann, who is transferring in from Nebraska.
  • Removed DE George Rooks, who is transferring to Boston College.
  • Added OG LaDarius Henderson, who is transferring to Michigan from Arizona State.
  • Removed TE Louis Hansen, who is transferring.
  • Added CB Mike Sainristil, who is returning for a fifth year.
  • Added OL Nathan Efobi, LB Breeon Ishmail, LB Jason Hewlett, CB Cameron Calhoun.
  • Removed EDGE Collins Acheampong, who flipped to Miami.
  • Removed QB Cade McNamara, who is transferring to Iowa.


Hit the jump for the breakdown by class.

Friday, December 23, 2022

Way Too Early 2023 Depth Chart: December 2022


Colston Loveland (image via MLive)

The following depth chart has removed these listed players from the 2022 depth chart due to various reasons, even though some could return with a fifth year or COVID year exception:

  • QB Alan Bowman (transfer)
  • QB Cade McNamara (transfer to Iowa)
  • WR Ronnie Bell (graduation)
  • WR Cornelius Johnson (graduation)
  • TE Erick All (transfer to Iowa)
  • TE Louis Hansen (transfer)
  • TE Joel Honigford (graduation)
  • TE Luke Schoonmaker (graduation)
  • OL Ryan Hayes (graduation)
  • OL Olu Oluwatimi (graduation)
  • DE Taylor Upshaw (graduation)
  • DE Julius Welschof (graduation)
  • DT George Rooks (transfer)
  • LB Michael Barrett (graduation)
  • CB Gemon Green (graduation)
  • S German Green (graduation)
  • P Brad Robbins (graduation)

It also assumes that every currently rostered player and every currently committed prospect will be here in 2023, which is obviously not true.

Hit the jump for the depth chart.

Thursday, December 22, 2022

Karmello English, Wolverine


Phenix City (AL) Central wide receiver Karmello English (image via OANow)

Phenix City (AL) Central wide receiver Karmello English committed to Michigan on National Signing Day. The former Auburn commit picked the Wolverines over offers from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Miami, Ole Miss, Tennessee, and Texas A&M, among others.

English is 5'11" and 175 lbs. As a junior in 2021, he caught 70 passes for 1,059 yards and 18 touchdowns.

ESPN: 4-star, 85 grade, #15 WR, #82 overall
On3: 4-star, 90 grade, #51 WR
Rivals: 4-star, 5.9 grade, #29 WR, #153 overall
247 Sports: 4-star, 90 grade, #40 WR

Hit the jump for more.

Jack Tuttle, Wolverine


Jack Tuttle (image via SI)

Former Indiana (and Utah) quarterback Jack Tuttle committed to Michigan on Tuesday as a sixth year transfer. He joined former Indiana tight end A.J. Barner in picking the Wolverines, coming in as a package deal.

Tuttle was listed at 6'4" and 210 lbs. last year for the Hoosiers. He was the backup for the Hoosiers behind Connor Bazelak, and in his one game against Penn State, he went 9/12 for 75 yards and 1 touchdown before a shoulder sidelined him for the rest of the year. As a redshirt junior in 2021, he went 45/87 for 423 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 5 interceptions. Altogether, he has completed 57.1% of his passes for 901 yards, 5 touchdowns, and 6 picks in his career.

ESPN: 3-star, 79 grade, #32 pocket passer
On3: N/A
Rivals: 4-star, 5.9 grade, #5 pro-style QB, #104 overall
247 Sports: 4-star, 95 grade, #7 pro-style QB, #110 overall

Hit the jump for more.

Jyaire Hill, Wolverine


Kankakee (IL) Kankakee cornerback Jyaire Hill

Kankakee (IL) Kankakee cornerback Jyaire Hill committed to Michigan on National Signing Day. He picked the Wolverines over offers from Florida, Florida State, Illinois, Notre Dame, Oregon, Purdue, Tennessee, and UCLA, among others.

Hill is listed at 6'1" and 170 lbs.

ESPN: 4-star, 81 grade, #34 CB, #239 overall
On3: 4-star, 93 grade, #15 CB, #112 overall
Rivals: 4-star, 5.8 grade, #51 CB
247 Sports: 4-star, 92 grade, #22 CB, #212 overall

Hit the jump for more.

Wednesday, December 21, 2022

A.J. Barner, Wolverine


A.J. Barner

Former Indiana tight end A.J. Barner committed to transfer to Michigan. Originally out of Aurora (OH) Aurora, Barner spent the past three seasons in Bloomington and has two seasons of eligibility remaining.

Barner is listed at 6'6" and 250 lbs. He had 28 catches for 199 yards and 2 touchdowns this past season. As a redshirt freshman in 2021, he caught 13 balls for 160 yards and 1 score.

ESPN: 3-star, 73 grade, #168 DE
On3: N/A
Rivals: 3-star TE, 5.5 grade
247 Sports: 3-star, 87 grade, #30 TE

Hit the jump for more.

Preview: 2023 Early National Signing Day


Kankakee (IL) Kankakee cornerback Jyaire Hill

Happy National Signing Day!

The first National Signing Day takes place today, December 21, 2022. Michigan has landed a number of commitments in recent days, both from the transfer portal (QB Jack Tuttle and TE A.J. Barner from Indiana; OL LaDarius Henderson from Arizona State; OL Drake Nugent and OL Myles Hinton from Stanford; LB Ernest Hausmann from Nebraska; and EDGE Josaiah Stewart from Coastal Carolina) and from the high school ranks (LB Hayden Moore, DT Roderick Pierce, DB D.J. Waller).

Michigan has offered upwards of 330+ players in the class of 2023, so I will not do a rundown here of every single uncommitted prospect. But there are some uncommitted players of note that are still available and being pursued by Michigan. Here are some of the more noteworthy ones:

  • Karmello English - WR - Phenix City (AL) Central: English (4-star, #25 WR, #178 overall) was previously committed to Auburn, but the coaching change altered that situation. His final five includes Alabama, Auburn, Kentucky, Michigan, and Jackson State. Some crystal balls came in last night for him to pick Michigan.
  • Chance Fitzgerald - WR - Nolensville (TN) Nolensville: Fitzgerald recently committed to Virginia Tech and was being slow played a little bit while Michigan prioritized English.
  • Aaron Gates - S - Sharpsburg (GA) Trinity: Gates (4-star, #21 ATH, #382 overall) has been committed to Florida all along, but at one time, there was optimism that Michigan could get him to flip. That appears unlikely at this point and he will probably stick with the Gators.
  • Nyckoles Harbor - WR/TE - Washington (DC) Archbishop Carroll: I throw 5-star athlete Harbor in here just to reiterate that he is not signing until February.
  • Jyaire Hill - CB - Kankakee (IL) Kankakee: Hill is a 4-star, the #23 cornerback, and #194 overall in the 247 Composite. He released a top five that does not include Michigan, but the Wolverines had appeared to be battling Illinois neck-and-neck for his services. It will be interesting to see whether his top five was a smoke screen or if he truly has eliminated the Wolverines.
  • Jamel Howard - DT - Chicago (IL) Marist: Howard is also not signing until February. Some southern schools like LSU and Ole Miss have come in with offers lately, and he will likely take some more visits in January.
  • Taliafi Taala - OT - Sandy (UT) Alta: Taala (3-star, #38 OT, #508 overall) has been a target for Michigan, but he appears unlikely to end up in Michigan's class at this point.

Another story line to watch is that of Michigan defensive end commit Enow Etta, who has been courted by Miami to join Collins Acheampong. Etta has said all the right things to the media about remaining committed to Michigan, but crazier things have happened.

Tuesday, December 20, 2022

Josaiah Stewart, Wolverine


Josaiah Stewart (image via Coastal Carolina)

Former Coastal Carolina outside linebacker Josaiah Stewart announced he would be transferring to Michigan and has two years of eligibility remaining. He picked the Wolverines over transfer opportunities from LSU and USC.

Stewart was listed at 6'2" and 230 lbs. at Coastal. As a sophomore in 2022, he made 37 tackles, 10 tackles for loss, 3.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 1 pass breakup, and 5 quarterback hurries. As a freshman the year before, he made 43 tackles, 15.5 tackles for loss, 12.5 quarterback sacks, 3 forced fumbles, and 3 quarterback hurries.

ESPN: 3-star, 76 grade, #93 DE
On3: N/A
Rivals: 3-star SDE, 5.5 grade
247 Sports: 3-star, 88 grade, #34 EDGE

Hit the jump for more.

Drake Nugent, Wolverine


Drake Nugent (#60, image via Stanford)

Former Stanford center Drake Nugent committed to Michigan as a grad transfer. As a class of 2019 signee out of Littleton (CO) Highland Ranch, he has two years of eligibility remaining. In the 2019 cycle, he was a 3-star, the #15 center, and #1141 overall.

Nugent is listed at 6'1" and 300 lbs. and has started the past 24 games at center for the Cardinal. He was named a captain in 2022 and is a two-time Honorable Mention All-Pac 12 honoree.

Nugent redshirted in 2019, does not lose a year of eligibility for 2020, and has been a starter since 2021. According to PFF (LINK), he has only allowed 2 quarterback hits in 993 dropbacks over the past two seasons.

Nugent is a little bit undersized at the aforementioned 6'1", but he is tough and stout on the interior. I watched some cuts of a couple of games, and the biggest thing I came away with is that he's unlikely to get pushed around very much. He may struggle at times with mammoth nose tackles, but those are few and far between. But if he's supposed to block back and wash a nose tackle/defensive tackle away, then he gets the job done. He also has the quickness and leverage to reach block, get out and move, and stay underneath defenders.

Michigan is losing center Olu Oluwatimi to the NFL after winning the Rimington and Outland trophies as the nation's best center and interior lineman, respectively. So they need a replacement at that position, and it could be Nugent; however, there's also rising redshirt sophomore Greg Crippen waiting in the wings, who redshirted in 2021 because of Oluwatimi's presence. Crippen is taller and longer and could potentially play guard if he's good enough to win a position, but Nugent is limited to center due to his size. It will be interesting to see how that battle plays out going into the future.

Michigan has landed several prospects in the transfer portal so far this cycle, including offensive guard LaDarius Henderson (LINK), linebacker Ernest Hausmann (LINK), and fellow Stanford Cardinal offensive tackle Myles Hinton (LINK).

Monday, December 19, 2022

Myles Hinton, Wolverine


Myles Hinton (#78)

Former Stanford offensive tackle Myles Hinton committed to Michigan over the weekend, joining LaDarius Henderson and Ernest Hausmann (and now others) in picking the Wolverines in the transfer portal.

Hinton is listed at 6'7" and 320 lbs. He started for two seasons at right tackle, albeit missing time here and there due to injury.

ESPN: 5-star, 90 grade, #3 OT, #14 overall
On3: N/A
Rivals: 5-star, 6.1 grade, #4 OT, #25 overall
247 Sports: 4-star, 92 grade, #16 OT, #218 overall

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, December 16, 2022

Potential Early Departures: Defense


Quinten Johnson (image via MGoBlue)

With the onslaught of transfer portal entries in college football, it's inevitable that Michigan will face some more departures this off-season. Four players have already announced their intentions to transfer, and two (Cade McNamara and Erick All to Iowa) have already found a landing spot. Quarterback Alan Bowman and tight end Louis Hansen are both headed for, ahem, greener pastures.

McNamara and All are both somewhat unique cases of players who played a lot but felt slighted in some way, but Bowman and Hansen are more typical cases of players buried on the depth chart who want to see some light at the end of the tunnel. This post explores several players in similar situations who may find better situations elsewhere.

You can find the version for the offensive side of the ball here (LINK).

DISCLAIMER: This post is speculative in nature and not intended to encourage/discourage any player from leaving Michigan's program. The reality is that college football is now a lot like unrestricted free agency from year to year.

Why he should stay: Velazquez is a solid two-sport athlete who's having a decent impact on the baseball field with Michigan's baseball team. His playing time on the field has increased yearly from one game in 2020 to seven games in 2021 to eleven games so far in the 2022 season. He is a steady contributor on special teams and has made a career-high 6 tackles.
Why he might leave: Playing time has been difficult to find on defense, and he has never risen above third string on defense. He was immediately passed by freshman Jimmy Rolder this fall, and the commitment of Ernest Hausmann probably does not bode well for the staff's faith in Velazquez contributing on defense in 2023. Velazquez only has one season of eligibility remaining, and he may want to go somewhere he can compete for a starting job, which is extremely unlikely in Ann Arbor.

Hit the jump for more.

Thursday, December 15, 2022

Roderick Pierce, Wolverine


Roderick "Trey" Pierce (image via Twitter)

Oak Lawn (IL) Brother Rice defensive tackle Roderick "Trey" Pierce committed to Michigan on Wednesday evening. The former Wisconsin commit picked the Wolverines over offers from Auburn, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, and Texas, among others.

Pierce is listed at 6'3" and 290 lbs.

ESPN: 3-star, 77 grade, #49 DT
On3: 3-star, 86 grade, #116 DL
Rivals: 4-star, 5.8 grade, #16 DT
247 Sports: 3-star, 89 grade, #51 DL

Hit the jump for more.

Ernest Hausmann, Wolverine


Nov 12, 2022; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; Michigan Wolverines running back Tavierre Dunlap (22) rushes in the second half against the Nebraska Cornhuskers at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Former Nebraska linebacker Ernest Hausmann has committed to Michigan as a transfer. Transfer offers are a little bit iffy to track, but he was offered by Iowa, Michigan, Michigan State, Northwestern, and Virginia out of high school.

Hausmann is a 6'2", 220 lb. player who made 54 tackles, 2 tackles for loss, and 1 sack while starting seven games as a true freshman for the Cornhuskers in 2022. Despite being offered by the Wolverines out of school, chose his "home state" team for a year instead; Hausmann was actually born in Uganda but was adopted and moved to be with his adoptive family when he was five years old.

High school rankings from 2022:

ESPN: 3-star, 78 grade, #24 ILB
On3: 4-star, 91 grade, #27 LB, #294 overall
Rivals: 3-star, 5.6 grade, #45 OLB
247 Sports: 3-star, 88 grade, #65 LB

Hit the jump for more.

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Visitors: December 16-18, 2022


A.J. Barner (image via Twitter)


A.J. Barner - TE - Indiana: Barner is a 6'6", 250 lb. starting tight end and captain from the Hoosiers. After spending three seasons in Bloomington, he has two seasons of eligibility left. This season he caught 28 passes for 199 yards and 3 touchdowns. Barner was a 3-star, the #51 tight end, and #1147 overall in the class of 2020. With Michigan losing Erick All (Iowa), Luke Schoonmaker (NFL), Louis Hansen (transfer), Carter Selzer (graduation), and Joel Honigford (graduation), they need some reinforcements at the tight end position.


Cameron Calhoun - CB - Cincinnati (OH) Winton Woods: Calhoun is committed to Michigan (LINK) and plans to enroll early. This is his official visit.

Malachi Coleman - DE - Lincoln (NE) East: Coleman is a 6'5", 205 lb. willowy outside linebacker/defensive end prospect. He's a 4-star, the #4 athlete, and #68 overall in the class. Coleman recently decommitted from Nebraska. This is his official visit. UPDATE: Coleman is visiting Colorado and new head coach Deion Sanders instead.

Nathan Efobi - OG - Cumming (GA) South Forsyth: Efobi is committed to Michigan (LINK).

Breeon Ishmail - LB - Cincinnati (OH) Princeton: Ishmail is committed to Michigan (LINK). This is his official visit.

D'Juan Waller - CB - Youngstown (OH) Chaney: Waller is a 6'3", 195 lb. safety/corner who has narrowed his list down to Kentucky and Michigan. He's a 3-star, the #126 safety, and #1446 overall. He's a teammate of 2023 Michigan linebacker commit Jason Hewlett.

Monday, December 12, 2022

2024 Recruiting Update: December 12, 2022


West Bloomfield (MI) West Bloomfield DE Brandon Davis-Swain (image via 247 Sports)


Bellevue (WA) Bellevue tight end Hogan Hansen committed to Michigan (LINK).


Max Anderson - OT - Frisco (TX) Reedy: Anderson is a 6'5", 300 lb. prospect with offers from Alabama, LSU, Penn State, and Texas A&M, among others. He's a 4-star, the #8 offensive tackle, and #182 overall.

Aydin Breland - DT - Santa Ana (CA) Mater Dei: Breland is a 6'5", 290-pounder with offers from Alabama, Notre Dame, Oregon, Texas A&M, and USC, among others. He's a 4-star, the #11 defensive lineman, and #79 overall.

Brandon Davis-Swain - DE - West Bloomfield (MI) West Bloomfield: Davis-Swain is a 6'4", 240 lb. edge player who decommitted from Notre Dame. He's a 4-star, the #12 defensive lineman, and #91 overall in the 2024 class. Iowa, Ole Miss, Penn State, and USC are some of the other schools that have offered. Davis-Swain had a semi-secret visit to Michigan this off-season, and he's a teammate of 2023 Michigan commits Amir Herring and Semaj Morgan.

Hit the jump for more.

Sunday, December 11, 2022

All-Time Leaders: Top Bowl Game Performances


Tyrone Wheatley ran for 235 yards against Washington in the Rose Bowl (image via Twitter)

With Michigan's post-season coming up, here's a look at Michigan's top performances in bowl games over the years.

NOTE: This took a lot of time to sift through the various games, so if I missed a top performance, let me know!


  1. 373 yards - Chad Henne (2007 vs. Florida)
  2. 369 yards - Tom Brady (1999 vs. Alabama)
  3. 319 yards - John Navarre (2002 vs. Florida)
  4. 309 yards - Chad Henne (2006 vs. USC)
  5. 296 yards - Elvis Grbac (1990 vs. Ole Miss)

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, December 9, 2022

Potential Departure Candidates: Offense


Tavierre Dunlap

With the onslaught of transfer portal entries in college football, it's inevitable that Michigan will face some more departures this off-season. Three players have already announced their intentions to transfer, and one (Cade McNamara to Iowa) has already found a landing spot. Tight ends Erick All and Louis Hansen are both headed for, ahem, greener pastures.

McNamara and All are both somewhat unique cases of players who played a lot but felt slighted in some way, but Hansen is a more typical case of a player buried on the depth chart who wants to see some light at the end of the tunnel. This post explores several players in similar situations who may find greener pastures elsewhere:

DISCLAIMER: This post is speculative in nature and not intended to encourage/discourage any player from leaving Michigan's program. The reality is that college football is now a lot like unrestricted free agency from year to year.

Why he should stay: Every Michigan starting running back during his tenure has turned in a 1,000+ yard season, but they had to wait three or more years to do it. Hassan Haskins and Blake Corum have both turned in star performances after waiting their turn. Dunlap has done well when given a chance, averaging 6.1 yards per carry.
Why he might leave: Opportunities are limited when you're the third string back or lower, and there's no reason to expect much of a change in scenery for 2023. While Corum is likely headed to the NFL, Donovan Edwards is a bona fide star in the making and freshman C.J. Stokes already has many more carries (55) in one season than Dunlap has in two (16), and walk-on Isaiah Gash (19 carries, 101 yards, 2 touchdowns) even topped Dunlap in touches. When it came to the Big Ten championship game and Ohio State, Michigan decided to use a big back at times . . . but that back was the 6'2", 232 lb. backup linebacker Kalel Mullings instead of Dunlap (6'0", 217).

Hit the jump for more.

Thursday, December 8, 2022

Hogan Hansen, Wolverine


Bellevue (WA) Bellevue tight end Hogan Hansen (image via Scorebook Live)

Bellevue (WA) Bellevue tight end Hogan Hansen, a 2024 prospect, committed to Michigan on Thursday. He picked the Wolverines over offers from Colorado, Florida, Miami, Oregon, Washington, and Washington State, among others.

Hansen is listed at 6'6" and 220 lbs.

ESPN: 4-star, 81 grade, #11 TE, #252 overall
On3: 3-star, 87 grade, #27 TE
Rivals: 4-star, 5.8 grade, #12 TE
247 Sports: 4-star, 90 grade, #6 TE, #122 overall

Hit the jump for more.

2023 Recruiting Update: November 8, 2022


Jason Hewlett

I have started a 2023 Transfer Portal offer board. You can find it in the dropdown menu at the top of the page.


Santa Margarita (CA) Rancho Santa Margarita defensive end Collins Acheampong flipped from Michigan to Miami (LINK).


Cincinnati (OH) Winton Woods cornerback Cameron Calhoun committed to Michigan (LINK).

Arizona State offensive lineman LaDarius Henderson announced he would be transferring to Michigan (LINK).

Youngstown (OH) Chaney linebacker Jason Hewlett committed to Michigan (LINK).

Cincinnati (OH) Princeton linebacker Breeon Ishmail committed to Michigan (LINK).

Hit the jump for more.

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

LaDarius Henderson, Wolverine


LaDarius Henderson (image via Yahoo! Sports)

Arizona State offensive guard LaDarius Henderson announced today that he would be spending his final year of eligibility in Ann Arbor.

Henderson was a 6'4", 270 lb. offensive tackle prospect coming out of Waxahachie (TX) Waxahachie in the class of 2019. He was ranked as a 247 Composite 3-star and the #50 offensive tackle, and he picked ASU over offers from Boise State, Colorado State, and Illinois, among others. (Fun fact: While at Waxahachie, Henderson played for former NFL quarterback Jon Kitna, who coached the program for three seasons before stepping down.)

Now listed at 6'5" and 310 lbs., Henderson started thirteen games at left guard in 2021 - in fact, all but 12 of ASU's offensive snaps - but only played in six games in 2022 due to injury. Overall, he has 29 career starts and was named a team captain this past season. He had accepted an invitation to the East-West Shrine Game, but instead it appears he will play for the Wolverines.

Michigan is losing at least two starters after this season in left tackle Ryan Hayes and center Olu Oluwatimi; but there's a good chance that one or both guards, Trevor Keegan and Zak Zinter, enter the NFL Draft in 2023. Henderson was ranked as an offensive tackle coming out of high school and played some as a backup tackle in 2020, but he's more of a guard. My guess is that Michigan plans to bring him in to compete at the guard position.

A possible depth chart for 2023 could be (as the roster stands right now):

LT: Karsen Barnhart (RS Sr.), Jeffrey Persi (RS Jr.), Evan Link (Fr.)
LG: Trevor Keegan (RS Sr.), LaDarius Henderson (RS Sr.), Alessandro Lorenzetti (RS Fr.), Connor Jones (RS Fr.)
C: Greg Crippen (RS So.), Raheem Anderson (RS So.), Amir Herring (Fr.)
RG: Zak Zinter (RS Jr.), Giovanni El-Hadi (RS So.), Dominick Giudice (RS So.), Nathan Efobi (Fr.)
RT: Trente Jones (RS Sr.), Andrew Gentry (RS Fr.), Tristan Bounds (RS So.)

Monday, December 5, 2022

Louis Hansen, Ex-Wolverine


Mandatory Credit: Photo by Carlos Osorio/AP/Shutterstock (12879266w) Michigan tight end Louis Hansen plays during an NCAA college football intra-squad spring game, in Ann Arbor, Mich Michigan Spring Football, Ann Arbor, United States - 02 Apr 2022

Second-year tight end Louis Hansen announced that he is entering the transfer portal. Hansen played in one game in 2021 and in two games during the 2022 season.

Hansen was a 4-star, the #11 tight end, and #257 in the 247 Composite during the 2021 recruiting cycle, with offers from Florida, Georgia, Ohio State, and Penn State, among others. The Needham (MA) St. Sebastian's product committed to Michigan in April 2020 during the beginning of the COVID outbreak and was a vocal recruiter in the class, so it's a bit surprising in retrospect to see him not stick around.

Here's what I said about him when he committed (LINK):

"Overall, Hansen is a fine prospect. Is he a difference maker at the next level? I don’t believe so. Could he come in to Michigan and maintain the status quo? Sure. He could be Sean McKeon with a little better ball skills."

However, Hansen has also played very little in two seasons, despite having good size and athleticism. He was buried on the depth chart this season even when Erick All and Luke Schoonmaker were hurt; and freshman Colston Loveland and walk-on Max Bredeson both passed him up for playing time. His size (6'5", 245 lbs.) and athleticism do not appear to be the limiting factor, but he never got much practice buzz; I can only assume there were some habits that were just not in line with what the coaching staff sought.

Hansen is the first member of the 2021 recruiting class to depart, though there will surely be others, including this off-season. Jim Harbaugh spoke proudly in the pre-season about keeping that 2021 class together despite concerns about his job and the stability of the program. The class was never going to stay intact forever, but at least all those players lasted two seasons.

Erick All, Ex-Wolverine


Erick All (image via MGoBlue)

Michigan tight end Erick All announced today that he was moving on from Michigan. The fourth-year player from Fairfield (OH) Fairfield had been a starter at tight end for 12 games and played in 35 overall, but he suffered a back injury earlier this season and missed most of the year while recovering.

I gave All a TTB Rating of 75 when he committed to Michigan (LINK). It's funny that when I went back to read my scouting report on him in his commitment post, I said this:

"He seems to be at his best running crossing routes, which is great, because that’s where Michigan will have its most success with the tight ends."

And the one play that stands out most for him in a Michigan uniform was the game-winning crossing route against Penn State:

Overall, All made 54 catches for 565 yards and 2 touchdowns in his career. (For a reference point, Michigan just played Purdue, whose tight end Payne Durham has 56 catches for 560 yards and 8 touchdowns in 2022 alone.) All was Honorable Mention All-Big Ten in 2021, his best season, when he made 38 catches for 437 yards and 2 scores.

With All (and Louis Hansen) entering the transfer portal, Luke Schoonmaker making a run at the NFL, and Joel Honigford running out of eligibility, Michigan will go from a very proven tight end room in 2022 to a questionable depth chart in 2023. It's always a strong tight end room at Michigan, but here's the depth chart headed into next season with the player's career reception total alongside:

  • Colston Loveland (So.): 12
  • Max Bredeson (RS Jr.): 5
  • Matt Hibner (RS Jr.): 2
  • Marlin Klein (RS Fr.): 0
  • Zack Marshall (Fr.): 0
  • Deakon Tonielli (Fr.): 0

The odds-on favorite to land All appears to be Iowa, where former Michigan quarterback Cade McNamara is headed. 

Sunday, December 4, 2022

Michigan 43, Purdue 22


Donovan Edwards (image via WPTV)

Hail to the Victors! It is truly incredible what this team, these coaches, and these players have accomplished over the past couple years. Michigan is 25-2 in that span. Back in the olden days, a 13-0 record would be good enough to be voted a national champion. Regardless of what happens in the College Football Playoff, this team is a national championship-caliber squad. Furthermore, Jim Harbaugh has cemented himself as one of the best coaches in modern football. If I had to name a top three, it would include Harbaugh, Urban Meyer (ugh), and Nick Saban (ugh again). Harbaugh has taken over struggling program after struggling program and made them elite, from Stanford to the San Francisco 49ers to Michigan. A lot of coaches are in the right place at the right time, including guys like Jimbo Fisher, Gene Chizik, Ed Orgeron, etc. to make once-in-a-lifetime runs and then fall off precipitously. There are very few who can consistently redirect a program wherever they go, and Harbaugh is one of them.

Hit the jump for more.

Saturday, December 3, 2022

All-Time Leaders: Top Performances Against Purdue


Brandon Minor (image via SUIE)

It was fun to walk down memory lane to remember the top games against Ohio State last week, so what the hell? Let's do it for Purdue, too.


  1. 271 yards - John Navarre (2002)
  2. 270 yards - John O'Korn (2017)
  3. 264 yards - Chad Henne (2007)
  4. 259 yards - Chris Zurbrugg (1984)
  5. 256 yards - Drew Henson (2000)

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, December 2, 2022

Big Ten Championship Game Preview: Michigan vs. Purdue


Charlie Jones (image via Bucky's 5th Quarter)

Michigan is #5 in rushing offense (244.5 yards/game) and #5 in yards per carry (5.62). Unfortunately, running back Blake Corum - a Heisman candidate - is out for this week and possibly for the rest of the season. That leaves the injured Donovan Edwards, who has a cast on his right hand, as the likely lead back. Can Michigan get heroics out of him for a second week in a row after 22 carries, 216 yards, and 2 touchdowns against Ohio State last week? Otherwise, it's down to freshman C.J. Stokes and walk-on Isaiah Gash. The offensive line has been outstanding and is mostly back to full strength, with all five starters earning some form of all-conference accolades. Purdue is #38 in rushing defense (128.8 yards allowed/game) and #40 in yards allowed per carry (3.91). They had some good performances early in the year, but their run defense seems to have dropped off a little bit in recent weeks. The leading tackler is junior safety Sanoussi Kane (6'0", 205) with 63 stops, but linebacker Jalen Graham (6'3", 220) averages a team-leading 6 tackles per game in his eight contests. Graham and defensive end Kydran Jenkins (6'1", 270) lead the team with 4 tackles behind the line each in the run game. Michigan has leaned on other teams with success in the past, but doing it without Corum is a relatively new and unknown challenge.
Advantage: Michigan

Hit the jump for more.

Thursday, December 1, 2022

Ex-Wolverine Updates: Week 13


Eric Gray


P George Caratan (UConn): UConn (6-6) had a bye to end the regular season and is bowl eligible. Caratan has punted 62 times for 2,503 yards (40.4 yards/punt).

C Zach Carpenter (Indiana): Carpenter started eight games, mostly at left guard due to a hand injury. Indiana (4-8) is not bowl eligible.

RB Zach Charbonnet (UCLA): Charbonnet ran 24 times for 119 yards and 1 touchdown in a 35-28 win over Cal. He also caught 4 passes for 22 yards.

S Sammy Faustin (UMass): Faustin did not record any stats in a 44-7 loss to Army. Faustin made 3 tackles while playing in eleven games this season. UMass (1-11) is not bowl eligible.

OG Chuck Filiaga (Minnesota): Filiaga is a sixth year senior who starts at right guard for the Gophers.

CB Darion Green-Warren (Nevada): Green-Warren did not record any stats in a 27-22 loss to UNLV. He made 5 tackles and 1 pass breakup this season. Nevada (2-10) is not bowl eligible.

Hit the jump for more.