Sunday, December 31, 2023

Rose Bowl Preview: Michigan Pass Offense vs. Alabama Defense


Terrion Arnold (image via Alabama Athletics)

Michigan ranks #73 in passing offense (218.8 yards/game), but they're #5 in passing efficiency and #14 in yards per attempt (9.0). Quarterback J.J. McCarthy was reportedly banged up for the last few weeks of the season, and some in Michigan circles have pointed to that being a major factor while he had a statistically mediocre run to end the regular season and then into the Big Ten Championship Game. McCarthy has thrown just 1 touchdown and 1 interception in the last five games, though he completed 68.6% of his throws during that time and twice topped the 80% mark. Michigan's vaunted offensive line was leaky in pass protection, especially on whichever side tackle Karsen Barnhart was manning. Now that Barnhart has slid inside to replace injured right guard Zak Zinter, things may improve in pass pro a little. It will be interesting to see whether Myles Hinton or Trente Jones takes on the full-time right tackle position, since Jones has played a ton of the "extra tight end" role. Michigan's best matchups at pass catcher are at tight end, where Colston Loveland (40 catches, 572 yards, 4 TD) and A.J. Barner (22 catches, 249 yards, 1 TD) reside. The leading overall receiver is speedy Roman Wilson, who has 41 catches for 662 yards and 11 touchdowns on the year. The wild card is RB Donovan Edwards (30 catches, 249 yards), who can create matchup issues with linebackers if used judiciously.

Alabama is #24 in pass defense (188.8 yards allowed/game) and #17 in pass efficiency defense, allowing 14 touchdowns while making 12 interceptions (#42). Their 6.4 yards allowed/attempt is tied for #15 nationally. The NFL builds around cornerbacks and pass rushers, and Alabama has some of the best in the country. They have two potential 1st round cornerbacks in redshirt sophomore Terrion Arnold (6'0", 196), who has 5 interceptions and 11 pass breakups, and junior Kool-Aid McKinstry (6'1", 195), who has 7 pass breakups. The Crimson Tide rank #13 in sacks (2.92 per game). They have three players with 7+ sacks, including OLB Dallas Turner (6'4", 252) with 9.0, senior OLB Chris Braswell (6'3", 255) with 8.0, and fifth year senior DE Justin Egboigbe (6'5", 292) with 7.0. For comparison, the last time Michigan had three players with 7+ sacks in one season was . . . never.

Advantage: Alabama. Michigan's receivers are going to have a tough time uncovering against Arnold and McKinstry, so the Wolverines are going to have to rely heavily on what they can get over the middle with the tight ends and running backs. I would expect Colston Loveland to lead Michigan in receiving in this one, but the pass rush could be a major issue if Barnhart and company can't hold up. Michigan has really struggled to throw the ball explosively against teams with decent pass rushers (Penn State, Ohio State, Iowa, etc.), and I don't know why that would change here in the CFP.

Thursday, December 28, 2023

Josh Priebe, Wolverine


Josh Priebe (#68, image via Freep)

Former Northwestern offensive guard Josh Priebe entered the transfer portal and committed to Michigan.

Priebe is listed at 6'5" and 310 lbs. He started 28 games at Northwestern, including twelve games in 2023. He was named Third Team All-Big Ten and selected as a captain for the Wildcats, who completed a surprising 8-5 season on December 23 with a 14-7 win over Utah.

Michigan offered Priebe out of Edwardsburg (MI) Edwardsburg back in the class of 2020. Though Michigan made sense in many respects, he was crystal balled to Michigan State for a while before picking Northwestern. He played quite a bit as a true freshman in 2020, which didn't count because of COVID. He then went on to start for the majority of 2021-2023.

I remember Priebe as a mobile offensive lineman who pulled quite a bit in high school and looked pretty good on the hoof. Michigan is losing both offensive guards - Trevor Keegan and Zak Zinter - to the NFL after this season, and Priebe started at left guard for the 'Cats. He could possibly slide into Keegan's spot at left guard for 2024, though there's stiff competition from the likes of Andrew Gentry, Giovanni El-Hadi, and others. A lot can happen between now and next August, but the starting line could look like this:

  • LT: Myles Hinton
  • LG: Josh Priebe
  • C: Drake Nugent
  • RG: Giovanni El-Hadi
  • RT: Trente Jones

All of those players have starting experience, and each of them would be in at least his fourth year of playing college football.

Priebe was a 3-star, the #20 offensive guard, and #435 overall in the class of 2020. He would be the first player to suite up for the Wolverines from Edwardsburg (MI) Edwardsburg, though there is a player named Frank Loomis who suited up for Michigan way back in 1891. I can't figure out when Edwardsburg High School opened or whether Loomis was just from the town . . . or if he attended some now defunct school in the area. Regardless, it's been a long time since anyone from Edwardsburg has worn the maize and blue winged helmet.

Jaishawn Barham, Wolverine


Jaishawn Barham

Former Maryland linebacker Jaishawn Barham, who entered the transfer portal two weeks after the regular season finished, committed to Michigan on Wednesday.

Barham is a 6'4", 233 lb. rising junior who will be immediately eligible to play with two seasons of eligibility remaining. As a freshman in 2022, he made 58 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, 4 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovery, and 1 pass breakup. Then in 2023 he made 37 tackles, 3 tackles for loss, 3 sacks, 1 interception, and 1 pass breakup.

Michigan offered Barham coming out of Baltimore (MD) St. Frances, but he chose the Terps. He created a bit of a stir, too, by waffling back and forth between Maryland and South Carolina. He was a 4-star, the #10 linebacker, and #119 overall in that class.

Barham is a physical specimen who has two years of Big Ten starting experience under his belt. He will be immediately eligible and should factor into playing time in 2024. With starting linebacker Michael Barrett moving on after this season, there will be at least one open spot. Junior Junior Colson has a decision to make about whether to attempt the NFL Draft or come back for one final year, and Ernest Hausmann is also under consideration. The best case scenario is that Barham, Colson, and Hausmann form the best inside linebacker trio in the country; the worst case scenario would seemingly be that Barham and Hausmann both start, while Colson opts for the NFL and Jimmy Rolder - who is redshirting in 2023 - is the primary backup inside linebacker in 2024.

Wednesday, December 27, 2023

Rose Bowl Preview: Michigan Rush Offense vs. Alabama Defense


Alabama safety Caleb Downs (image via Alabama Athletics)

Michigan ranks #61 in rushing offense (161.8 yards/game), #71 in yards per carry (4.27), and #4 in rushing touchdowns. The Wolverines went from a heavy rush offense the past two years to more of a balanced attack this season. So despite having a talented and very experienced offensive line, the rushing numbers have dropped off some. Blake Corum topped 1,000 yards this season, but he needed the Big Ten Championship Game against Iowa to get there (218 carries, 1028 yards, 24 TD). Star running back Donovan Edwards is somehow the second least efficient running back in the Big Ten (3.5 yards/carry). The offensive line had to reshuffle during the Ohio State game after losing All-American right guard Zak Zinter to a broken leg. The good news is that he was replaced at guard by Karsen Barnhart, who seems to perform better at guard than tackle. The bad news is that new right tackle Trente Jones used to be Michigan's sixth lineman in the jumbo package, so now perhaps that package is gone. Possibly, though, the coaching staff could spend the bowl practices incorporating someone else - such as backup Myles Hinton - as the jumbo tight end.

Alabama is #31 in rush defense (124.5 yards allowed/game) and #33 in yards allowed per carry (3.7). They have allowed 14 rushing touchdowns this season, which is tied for #39 in the country. Although the team has improved overall throughout the season, the rushing defense has arguably got worse. Ten out of those 14 rushing touchdowns allowed have come in the last five games, while LSU and Auburn have run for 8.6 and 5.8 yards per carry, respectively. LSU has Heisman-winning dual-threat QB Jayden Daniels, but Auburn has . . . nobody noteworthy. The leading tackler for the Crimson Tide is true freshman strong safety Caleb Downs (6'0", 203 lbs.), who has an amazing 99 stops. He's followed by sophomore LB Jihaad Campbell (6'3", 230), who has 65 tackles but is listed as a backup; redshirt sophomore CB Terrion Arnold (6'0", 196) with 61; redshirt sophomore LB Deontae Lawson (6'2", 230) with 61; and fifth year senior DE Justin Egboigbe (6'5", 292) with 60. Egboigbe and OLB Dallas Turner (6'4", 252) are the guys to watch to be making plays in the backfield. While the interior defensive line play has not been outstanding, the Tide have a couple huge starting tackles in redshirt sophomore Tim Kennan III (6'2", 315) at nose tackle and sophomore DT Jaheim Oatis (6'5", 320).

Advantage: Alabama. The overall numbers and recent history favor the opponent. Michigan has been overwhelmed at the line of scrimmage in recent years against SEC opponents like Alabama and Georgia. I don't see that getting much better now that Michigan will be without its best offensive lineman. Michigan has not had explosive plays in the run game this season, so unless J.J. McCarthy can become a bigger factor and channel his inner Jayden Daniels, I expect Michigan to struggle a little. I do think they'll find some success - it won't be a total bloodbath in the trenches - but Michigan will have to be creative and balanced.

Monday, December 18, 2023

Class of 2024: Early Signing Day Primer


Lugard Edokpayi

The "early" National Signing Day for the class of 2024 will be on Wednesday, December 20, 2023. This early signing day has really killed some of the excitement that used to exist, built during a slow off-season after the bowls. Now the early signing day is mixed in with the College Football Playoff discussion, upcoming bowls, transfer portal drama, and coaching changes . . . not to mention a little thing called Christmas about a week later.

Michigan is also offering 300+ players per cycle and decommitments happen left and right, depending on who's offering the best NIL plan, so it's harder and harder for the average fan to follow recruiting.

Instead of doing a player-by-player rundown of what remains of the 2024 class, I'll try to address the most pressing issues. And if anything surprising happens, so be it.

More than 30 offered players remain uncommitted for 2024, but most are not considering Michigan. The most prominent target is District Heights (MD) Bishop McNamara DE Lugard Edokpayi (4-star, #25 EDGE, #305 overall). Edokpayi took an official visit to Michigan in the middle of last week, and he has now been crystal balled to the Wolverines by Brice Marich and has a FutureCast from Josh Henschke. Edokpayi is the lone uncommitted prospect who seems to be a strong possibility for the Wolverines, but sometimes there are surprises.

Hit the jump for more.

Tuesday, December 12, 2023

Visitors: December 15-17, 2023


Jaishawn Barham (image via Maryland Athletics)


Jaishawn Barham - LB - Maryland: Barham is a 6'4", 233 lb. prospect who spent the past two seasons with the Terrapins. In the class of 2022, he was a 4-star, the #10 linebacker, and #119 overall. For the 2023 season, he made 37 tackles, 3 sacks, and 1 interception; that 1 interception came in the red zone against Michigan in the second to last week of the regular season. He could be a potential replacement for the graduating Michael Barrett, and perhaps junior Junior Colson could enter the NFL draft, too. Michigan offered him out of high school when he was coming from Baltimore (MD) St. Frances, which is the school that produced Blake Corum, Derrick Moore, Eyabi Okie, and others.

Joey Slackman - DT - Penn: Originally from Commack (NY) Commack, Slackman is a 6'4", 300 lb. grad transfer from Penn. He made 49 tackles and 4.5 sacks in 2023. The 2024 season would be his sixth year.

Upton Stout - S - Western Kentucky: Stout visited last weekend. He's a 5'9", 185 lb. player who made 29 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, 1 interception, and 8 pass breakups this past year. Originally from Houston (TX) North Shore, he started off at North Texas before transferring to WKU. Stout made 4 interceptions during his first year at WKU in 2022. Stout will be a redshirt junior in 2024 and could step in at nickel for Mike Sainristil.


Jo'Ziah Edmond - CB - Nappanee (IN) Northwood: Edmond is committed to Michigan (LINK). He's a 4-star, the #23 cornerback, and #335 overall. This is his official visit.

Lugard Edokpayi - DE - District Heights (MD) Bishop McNamara: Edokpayi is a 6'6", 230 lb. prospect with offers from Florida State, Maryland, Michigan, Rutgers, Tennessee, and Texas A&M, among others. He's a 4-star, the #22 edge, and #268 overall. This is his official visit, a midweek stay from December 12-14.

Zach Ludwig - LB - South Park (PA) South Park: Ludwig is committed to Michigan. This is his official visit.

Jaden Smith - LB - Charlotte (NC) West Charlotte: Smith is committed to Michigan (LINK). This is his official visit.

Monday, December 11, 2023

C.J. Stokes, Ex-Wolverine


C.J. Stokes

Michigan running back C.J. Stokes has entered the transfer portal. This past season was his second season in the program, and he redshirted, so he will have three seasons to play three seasons. He was a 3-star, the #63 running back, and #797 overall in the 2022 recruiting class out of Columbia (SC) Hammond. I initially gave him a TTB Rating of 59 before bumping him up to a 71 at the end of the cycle.

Stokes got a lot of playing time as a freshman. He ran 55 times for 273 yards and 1 touchdown, and he also caught 1 pass for 15 yards, while playing in eleven games. But toward the end of the season, Kalel Mullings switched from linebacker to running back and started to take some snaps. That carried over into the 2023 campaign.

During the current 2023 season, Stokes played in just two games and ran 2 times for 6 yards. He did have injury issues that caused him to miss a chunk of time. Either way, though, he appeared to have lost ground to Mullings.

I liked what I saw from Stokes during his time at Michigan, but he needed to continue getting stronger and working on some fundamental things, such as getting his shoulders square to defenders. I think he can go somewhere and still have a productive career.

Looking ahead to 2024, Blake Corum could technically return (if he uses the COVID year exemption) but will almost certainly be heading to the NFL. Donovan Edwards expressed before the season that he planned to jump to the NFL, but his season did not go according to plan. And Mullings played a good-sized role with 32 carries for 195 yards and 1 touchdown, possibly earning him the chance to be a starter next season. Edwards and Mullings could make a nice 1-2 punch in 2024 if both decide to return.

Potential depth chart for 2024 (according to seniority):

  1. Kalel Mullings (RS Sr.)
  2. Donovan Edwards (Sr.)
  3. Tavierre Dunlap (RS Jr.)
  4. Cole Cabana (RS Fr.)
  5. Ben Hall (RS Fr.)
  6. Micah Ka'apana (Fr.)
  7. Jordan Marshall (Fr.)
Stokes is the third member of the 2022 class to transfer, following safety Damani Dent (Charlotte) and linebacker Deuce Spurlock (Florida).

Sunday, December 10, 2023

Deyvid Palepale, Wolverine


Deyvid Palepale

Lancaster (PA) Manheim Township defensive tackle Deyvid Palepale flipped from USC to Washington. Aside from the Trojans, Palepale also has offers from Auburn, Florida, Miami, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Penn State, and Tennessee, among others.

Palepale is listed at 6'3" and 305 pounds.

ESPN: 3-star, 79 grade, #27 DT
On3: 3-star, 87 grade, #79 DL
Rivals: 3-star, 5.6 grade, #35 DT
247 Sports: 3-star, 88 grade, #75 DL

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, December 8, 2023

2024 Scholarship Count


Braiden McGregor

Players are listed in order of remaining eligibility. With 105 scholarships allotted, Michigan is currently beyond its scholarship limit by 20. Meanwhile, 19 seniors are scheduled to graduate, so the 2024 class should have at least 19 players.


Hit the jump for the breakdown by class.

Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Way-Too-Early 2024 Depth Chart: December 2023


Colston Loveland (image via MLive)

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

  • QB Jack Tuttle (graduation)
  • RB Blake Corum (graduation)
  • WR Cornelius Johnson (graduation)
  • WR Roman Wilson (graduation)
  • OL Karsen Barnhart (graduation)
  • OL LaDarius Henderson (graduation)
  • OL Myles Hinton (graduation)
  • OL Trente Jones (graduation)
  • OL Trevor Keegan (graduation)
  • OL Drake Nugent (graduation)
  • OL Zak Zinter (graduation)
  • DT Cam Goode (graduation)
  • LB Michael Barrett (graduation)
  • LB/RB Kalel Mullings (graduation)
  • LB Joey Velazquez (graduation)
  • CB Mike Sainristil (graduation)
  • CB Josh Wallace (graduation)
  • S Quinten Johnson (graduation)
  • K James Turner (graduation)

It also assumes that every currently rostered player and every currently committed prospect will be here in 2024, which is obviously not true.

Hit the jump for the depth chart.

Monday, December 4, 2023

Quick Thoughts on the CFP


Jalen Milroe (image via San Diego Tribune)

Here are some quick-hitting thoughts on the College Football Playoff selection.

#1 Michigan: Personally, I don't necessarily believe Michigan is the best team in the country. I think there are a couple teams that would defeat Michigan 51% or more of the time. That doesn't mean Michigan can't win the national championship. It just means things will have to fall their way and/or they'll have to play up to their potential. But they had to be the choice for #1, because they have shown both a consistent offense and a consistent defense, along with solid special teams. Washington's defense has not been great, and both Texas and Alabama have had losses. Unfortunately, I think Alabama is one of the teams that I would choose to defeat Michigan at this point, and I would have had Georgia ahead of them, too. This is a tough matchup for the Wolverines.

#2 Washington: Washington has a questionable defense, but their offense has been explosive for most of the year. They average 7.23 yards/play and QB Michael Penix, who used to play at Indiana, has thrown for 4,218 yards, 33 touchdowns, and 9 interceptions this year. And RB Dillon Johnson has run for 1,113 yards and 14 touchdowns. Despite some struggles, winning the games is what matters, and they did that 13 times with zero losses. Their last four games have been one-score wins, including one against a 5-7 Washington State team.

#3 Texas: Texas has an all-around good football program with former 5-star QB Quinn Ewers at the helm. They also have two former Michigan commits in star WR Xavier Worthy and DE Ethan Burke, the latter of whom leads the squad with 5.5 sacks. Their one loss came against Oklahoma, and it was a 34-30 game. Oklahoma finished 10-2 and is ranked #12. The big win was against Alabama early in the season, a 34-24 victory when the Tide were trying to figure out their QB situation. Head coach Steve Sarkisian struggled in stints at Washington and USC, but he's a coach who worked with Nick Saban as a coordinator, which somehow propelled him to success at Texas. Sometimes spending a bit of time around Saban works magic for some guys, like it did with Jim McElwain, Kirby Smart, Lane Kiffin, and others.

#4 Alabama: First of all, Alabama shouldn't be in the CFP because they had a loss to Texas. Florida State went 13-0 in a Power Five conference and absolutely should have been the CFP committee's choice. The Seminoles should be #3 and Texas should be #4. Yes, Florida State QB Jordan Travis broke his leg and is out for the season, but the Seminoles continued to win without him. Winning the games should matter more than a popularity contest. But the CFP knows that a lot of people watch SEC football, and they don't want to piss off a moneymaking conference. It's a travesty that those players and coaches have to watch the CFP from afar. That being said . . . I would pick Alabama to beat Michigan, which sucks for the Wolverines. Michigan's offensive line has struggled this season, and its best lineman, Zak Zinter, is out for the year with a broken leg. Meanwhile, Alabama QB Jalen Milroe (10.4 yards/attempt, 23 passing TDs, 6 INTs, 12 rushing TDs) has taken a giant step forward since the beginning of the year. He can run and throw and presents a lot of issues for Michigan's defense. I'll be doing my research and watching more film over the next few weeks, but I do think 'Bama would beat Michigan more times than not.

Saturday, December 2, 2023

Big Ten Championship Preview: Michigan vs. Iowa


Michigan is #53 in rushing offense (169.8 yards/game) and tied for #56 in yards per carry (4.44). Ohio State held up fairly well against the run last week, but they did allow a 22-yard touchdown run by Blake Corum immediately after Michigan starting RG Zak Zinter was lost for the season due to a broken leg. It may be interesting to see what Michigan does with the offensive line. Last week it was RT Karsen Barnhart sliding to right guard, with jumbo TE/extra OT Trente Jones sliding in at right tackle. But Michigan has some options with backup offensive guard Giovanni El-Hadi and former starter Myles Hinton, who was injured two weeks ago but may be available this week. The problem with inserting Jones at right tackle full-time is that it may eliminate Michigan's formations with that sixth offensive lineman. Iowa is #17 in rushing defense (105.6 yards allowed/game) and they give up just 3.09 yards per carry, which is #9 nationally. They have also allowed just 2 rushing touchdowns this season, which is #1. Senior LB Jay Higgins (6'2", 233 lbs.) has some ridiculous stats with 141 tackles, including a season-high 18 against Penn State in the Hawkeyes 31-0 loss. Fellow senior LB Nick Jackson (6'0", 237) has 91 stops of his own, followed by senior safety Quinn Schulte (6'2", 209) with 59. Senior DE Joe Evans (6'2", 252) leads the team with 9.5 tackles for loss, followed by Jackson's 8.0 and senior safety Sebastian Castro (5'11", 206) with 8.0. It's a very well coached defense, as always, and they've won 10 games despite a terrible offense.
Advantage: Iowa

Hit the jump for more.

Thursday, November 30, 2023

2023 All-Big Ten Selections


Blake Corum

Michigan dominated the all-conference selections in 2023, which is to be somewhat expected with a 12-0 record.

QB J.J. McCarthy (Coaches, Media)
RB Blake Corum (Coaches, Media)
OL La'Darius Henderson (Coaches)
OL Zak Zinter (Coaches, Media)
C Drake Nugent (Coaches, Media)
TE Colston Loveland (Coaches)
DL Mason Graham (Coaches)
DB Will Johnson (Coaches, Media)
DB Mike Sainristil (Media)

WR Roman Wilson (Coaches, Media)
TE Colston Loveland (Media)
OL Karsen Barnhart (Coaches)
OL La'Darius Henderson (Media)
OL Trevor Keegan (Coaches, Media)
DL Kenneth Grant (Coaches)
DL Kris Jenkins, Jr. (Coaches, Media)
LB Junior Colson (Coaches, Media)
DB Mike Sainristil (Coaches)
K James Turner (Coaches)

OL Karsen Barnhart (Media)
DL Mason Graham (Media)
DL Kenneth Grant (Media)
LB Michael Barrett (Coaches)
DB Rod Moore (Coaches)
P Tommy Doman (Media)

WR Cornelius Johnson (Media)
TE A.J. Barner (Coaches, Media)
DL Jaylen Harrell (Coaches, Media)
DL Braiden McGregor (Coaches, Media)
DL Derrick Moore (Coaches, Media)
DL Josaiah Stewart (Coaches)
LB Michael Barrett (Media)
DB Rod Moore (Media)
DB Makari Paige (Coaches)
DB Josh Wallace (Coaches, Media)
K James Turner (Media)
P Tommy Doman (Media)
RET Semaj Morgan (Coaches, Media)

I believe every single Michigan starter is represented here except FB/TE Max Bredeson (1 start), OL Trente Jones (2 starts), WR Tyler Morris (2 starts), safety Keon Sabb (4 starts). Even a full-time backup in Derrick Moore - who has yet to start a single game - was named Honorable Mention by both the coaches and the media.

Do you see any snubs?

Personally, I think Mike Sainristil should have been 1st team to both coaches/media. Meanwhile, I'm surprised Barnhart was valued so highly since he struggled in pass protection so much, especially over the last three weeks of the season.

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

2023 Ex-Wolverine Updates: Week 13


Dan Villari (image via Syracuse Athletics)

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TE Erick All (Iowa): All tore his ACL in week seven. He led the Hawkeyes in all receiving categories, catches (21), yards (299), and touchdowns (3) by a wide margin at the time of his injury.

WR Andrel Anthony (Oklahoma): Anthony is out for the season. He caught 27 passes for 429 yards and 1 touchdown this season before the injury.

QB Alan Bowman (Oklahoma State): Bowman completed 31/47 passes for 321 yards, 0 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions in a 40-34 win over BYU.

Hit the jump for more.

Sunday, November 26, 2023

Michigan 30, Ohio State 24


Michigan acting head coach Sherrone Moore reacts to a video replay during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Ohio State, Saturday, Nov. 25, 2023, in Ann Arbor, Mich. (AP Photo/David Dermer)

Hail to the Victors! For the third season in a row, Michigan proved to be superior to Ohio State. It was a tight game from start to finish, but ultimately, Michigan's defense sealed the victory with a good pass rush by Jaylen Harrell and an interception by Ohio native Rod Moore. This was perhaps the most satisfying win of the three straight wins vs. the Buckeyes, because all the excuses for Ohio State were stripped away - there was no snow, there was no Connor Stalions, and there wasn't even a Jim Harbaugh. Both teams were (relatively) healthy. And Michigan came out on top.

Hit the jump for more.

Saturday, November 25, 2023

Preview: Michigan vs. Ohio State Notes and Prediction



  • Ohio State players recruited by Michigan are too numerous to list. A huge chunk of the Buckeyes' roster was targeted by Michigan.
  • Ohio State players from the State of Michigan include: S Cameron Martinez (Muskegon), RB Cayden Saunders (Northville), WR Kai Saunders (Northville), OT Grant Toutant (Warren De La Salle)


  • On November 26, 2022, Michigan beat Ohio State 45-23 at Ohio Stadium
  • Michigan established a 60-51-6 lead in the rivalry
  • Ohio State QB C.J. Stroud completed 31/48 passes for 349 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 2 interceptions
  • RB Donovan Edwards ran 22 times for 216 yards and 2 touchdowns, including 85- and 75-yarders
  • WR Cornelius Johnson caught 4 passes for 160 yards and 2 touchdowns, including 75- and 69-yarders
  • Converted LB Kalel Mullings completed a jump pass from the RB position for a 15-yard gain to Luke Schoonmaker


  • Ohio State 23, Michigan 17

Friday, November 24, 2023

Preview: Michigan Defense vs. Ohio State Offense


Marvin Harrison, Jr. (image via Ohio State Athletics)

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Michigan is #9 in the country, allowing just 90 yards/game on the ground. That includes allowing 2.96 yards/carry, which is also #9 nationally. Last week Maryland managed just 15 yards on 33 attempts (including sacks), though they did score 3 touchdowns from the 1-yard line on quarterback sneaks. Linebacker Junior Colson leads the team with 60 tackles, followed by 42 from LB Michael Barrett and 32 from Ernest Hausmann. (Side note: The gap from #1 to #2 to #3 in tackles is ridiculous; the #3 tackler is averaging fewer than 3 tackles per game.) At this point everyone knows about Mason Graham and Kenneth Grant on the defensive line, but #4 defensive tackle Rayshaun Benny has quietly been coming on and now has 23 tackles and 5.5 tackles for loss on the season, including 4.5 TFL in the past six games. Ohio State is #85 in rushing offense (145.6 yards/game) and #69 in yards per carry (4.33). Junior RB TreVeyon Henderson (5'10", 212 lbs.) was not healthy early in the year, but he has 74 carries for 499 yards and 5 touchdowns in the past four games. Backup RB Deamonte "Chip" Trayanum (5'11", 233) is the Arizona State transfer who had a solid game against Michigan last year, and he has 79 carries for 336 yards and 3 TD so far this year. Quarterback Kyle McCord (6'3", 215) is not a threat on the ground, with 31 attempts for -62 yards on the year. Up front the Buckeyes don't have a dominant offensive line like they have had in some years, but LG Donovan Jackson (6'4", 320) is the best of the bunch. Redshirt sophomore LT Josh Simmons (6'5", 310) was playing for Brady Hoke at SDSU at this time last year, and redshirt freshman C Carson Hinzman (6'4", 300) has also struggled at times. Henderson is a potential breakaway threat at running back, and Michigan needs to slow him up at the line of scrimmage.
Advantage: Michigan

Michigan is #2 in pass defense (144.8 yards allowed/game) and #3 in passing efficiency defense. They're #7 in yards allowed per attempt (5.7). This all comes despite being just so-so at getting after the QB, with 2.46 sacks per game, which is #40 nationally. OLB Jaylen Harrell leads the team with 6.5 sacks, followed closely by fellow OLB Josaiah Stewart with 5.5 quarterback takedowns. On the back end, it will be interesting to see what Michigan does to combat Ohio State junior WR Marvin Harrison, Jr. (6'4", 205), who has 62 catches for 1,093 yards and 13 touchdowns on the season, despite teams scheming non-stop to shut him down. Michigan could choose to shadow him with #1 CB Will Johnson, but I don't think Johnson can cover him one-on-one. Harrison will require safety help, whether it's Johnson or Josh Wallace covering him. Senior TE Cade Stover (6'4", 251) is the #2 target with 38 catches for 534 yards and 5 scores, followed by junior WR Emeka Egbuka (6'1", 206), who has 32 catches, 427 yards, and 3 touchdowns. The Buckeyes are #42 in the country in sacks allowed (1.64 per game). McCord's immobility will be a factor if Michigan can get after him, and he can't be allowed to sit back and wait for Harrison to come open, because Harrison is the best player in the country, in my opinion.
Advantage: Michigan

Preview: Michigan Offense vs. Ohio State Defense


Ohio State CB Denzel Burke (image via ESPN)

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Michigan is #50 in rush offense (171 yards/game) and #54 in yards per carry (4.48). However, Michigan is tied for #31 - with Rich Rodriguez's Jackonsville State - in rushing touchdowns with 31. Blake Corum has 180 carries for 888 yards and 20 touchdowns, the last of which leads the nation. Backup Donovan Edwards is averaging 3.4 yards per carry, which is dead last among qualifying running backs in the Big Ten. The Wolverines have suffered a couple blows in recent weeks, first losing left tackle La'Darius Henderson and then losing his backup, Myles Hinton. Last week that forced right tackle Karsen Barnhart to the left side, moving Trente Jones from his "extra OL" spot to right tackle. Michigan averaged just 3.33 yards/carry against Maryland last week, but stand-in head coach Sherrone Moore said he expects Hinton and Henderson to be ready for The Game. Ohio State is #21 in rush defense (108.6 yards allowed/game) and a matching #21 in yards allowed per carry (3.32). They have allowed just 3 rushing touchdowns all season, the last of which came against Maryland on October 7. Of all teams, Rutgers managed the biggest day running against the Buckeyes, going for 232 yards on 43 carries. Senior inside linebacker Tommy Eichenberg (6'2", 239 lbs.) leads the team in tackles with 75, followed by senior LB Steele Chambers (6'1", 232) and sophomore CB Davison Igbinosun (6'2", 190) with 62 and 48, respectively. Ohio State is tied for #71 in tackles for loss with 5.64 per game, led by junior DT Tyleik Williams (6'2", 290) with 10.0 and junior DE Jack Sawyer (6'4", 265) with 6.0. Williams has been outstanding on the interior.
Advantage: Ohio State

Michigan is #64 in passing offense (228.6 yards/game) and #4 in passing efficiency. They're #7 in yards per attempt with 9.5. J.J. McCarthy had an off week last week when he went 12/23 for 141 yards, 0 touchdowns, and 1 interception, and he has not thrown a touchdown pass since October 21, when he threw for 4 scores against a terrible Michigan State squad. His Heisman hopes have dwindled with his numbers paling in comparison to some other players, but he's still one of the better QBs in the nation. He seemed to get banged up a couple weeks ago and looked off against Maryland. The bigger concern is the health of WR Roman Wilson, who was hit hard on a catch over the middle against the Terps (on which Maryland's safety should have been ejected for targeting) and left the game. There are some who say that was only for precautionary reasons, but basically, he was taken out because of a possible concussion and his status is unknown. Otherwise, Michigan doesn't have great speed at the receiver position, and Wilson's absence could be a problem. At one time he led the country in receiving touchdowns, although now he's tied for 11th. Michigan also had a lot of problems protecting McCarthy the past two weeks. Barnhart has been a turnstile against both Penn State and Maryland, and things don't get a ton easier against Sawyer and J.T. Tuimoloau of the Buckeyes. Ohio State has the #1 pass defense in the nation, giving up just 144.3 yards/game, 4.7 yards/attempt, and a 92.71 passing efficiency. They're #15 in pass breakups (49) but they're tied for 97th in interceptions (7). Junior CB Denzel Burke (6'1", 190) has 9 PBU and 1 INT, while senior safety Josh Proctor (6'2", 205) has 8 PBU and 1 INT. The only player with multiple interceptions is junior CB Jordan Hancock (6'1", 185), who has 2 picks and 5 PBU. Senior safety Lathan Ransom (6'1", 210) has missed the last three games, allowing Hancock to play more. Ohio State is tied for #86 in sacks (1.91 per game), led by Tuimoloau (4.0), Williams (3.0), and Sawyer (2.5).
Advantage: Ohio State

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Chris Partridge, Ex-Wolverine


Chris Partridge

Michigan linebackers coach Chris Partridge was fired toward the end of last week, ending his short second tenure in Ann Arbor. He coached an array of squads - special teams, linebackers, and safeties - from 2015-2019 under both D.J. Durkin (2015) and Don Brown (2016-2019) and was also an ace recruiter. He coached both Jabrill Peppers and Rashan Gary in high school, the former of whom signed with Michigan when Partridge was a high school coach and the latter of whom came to the Wolverines after Partridge was already a Wolverine.

From 2020-2022, Partridge worked under Durkin at Ole Miss, and he returned to Ann Arbor this past off-season when Durkin moved on to Texas A&M.

Despite being a great recruiter and generally considered to be an awesome guy, he was let go in the wake of "Sign-gate." Word leaking out from underground is that he attempted to interfere with the investigation into stealing signs, which largely centered around Connor Stalions. Partridge and Stalions were supposedly pretty tight and knew each other from back when Stalions was volunteering during Partridge's first stint with the Wolverines.

The loss of Partridge is significant from a recruiting standpoint. It's unclear whether there will be further punishment coming down from the NCAA. It seems as if impeding an NCAA investigation might warrant some kind of "show cause" for any program trying to hire him, but perhaps they'll deem the firing a sufficient punishment. Of course, the NCAA moves very slowly, so it may be a while before we find out what they think should be done.

Rick Minter is the new linebackers coach. He was hired as a defensive analyst in the off-season and is the father of defensive coordinator Jesse Minter, along with being a former head coach at Cincinnati.

Carter Smith, Wolverine


Fort Myers (FL) Bishop Verot QB Carter Smith (image via SI)

Fort Myers (FL) Bishop Verot quarterback Carter Smith, a 2025 prospect, committed to Michigan on Tuesday. He picked the Wolverines over offers from Florida, Maryland, Miami, Penn State, and others.

Smith is listed at 6'3" and 180 lbs. As a sophomore in 2022, he completed 185/296 passes for 3,104 yards, 29 touchdowns, and 6 interceptions. He also ran 133 times for 692 yards and 19 touchdowns.

ESPN: 4-star, 80 grade, #8 QB, #209 overall
On3: 4-star, 92 grade, #8 QB, #112 overall
Rivals: 3-star, 5.7 grade, #5 QB
247 Sports: 3-star, 89 grade, #14 QB

Hit the jump for more.

Monday, November 20, 2023

Michigan 31, Maryland 24


Mike Sainristil (image via Michigan Athletics)

A win is a win. Michigan has at least one of these every year, where the team overcomes a bit of a scare from an inferior team. Last season it was a close game against Maryland and a narrow victory over Illinois. The near loss to the Illini obviously didn't turn out to be disastrous for the Ohio State game in 2022, and maybe this one won't, either. I don't think this game will determine the outcome of the OSU contest. Maryland was a bit of a trap game between Penn State and Ohio State, and maybe the team wasn't fully locked in. They seemed to be loaded for bear early in the game when they jumped out to a 23-3 lead, but they seemed to sputter and let Maryland get back in the game. Clearly, though, the team will have to play better to beat the Buckeyes.

Hit the jump for more.

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Michigan's 10 Longest Plays vs. Maryland


Giles Jackson (image via Toledo Blade)

Michigan is 8-1 against the Terrapins after they started playing each other in 1985. The Terps eventually joined the Big Ten in 2014, winning that first game against the Brady Hoke-led Wolverines before losing five in a row.

  1. Giles Jackson 97-yard kickoff return TD (2019)
  2. A.J. Henning 81-yard kickoff return TD (2021)
  3. David Long 80-yard interception return (2017)
  4. Cade McNamara 77-yard TD pass to Donovan Edwards (2021)
  5. Jehu Chesson 66-yard TD run (2015)
  6. Tony Boles 64-yard TD run (1989)
  7. Wilton Speight 56-yard pass to Chris Evans (2016)
  8. Ty Isaac 53-yard TD run (2016)
  9. Joe Kerridge 52-yard run (2014)
  10. Shea Patterson 51-yard pass to Nico Collins (2018)
  11. Shea Patterson 51-yard pass to Nico Collins (2019)

Hit the jump for some videos.

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

2023 Ex-Wolverine Updates: Week 11


Dan Villari (image via Syracuse Athletics)

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TE Erick All (Iowa): All tore his ACL in week seven. He led the Hawkeyes in all receiving categories, catches (21), yards (299), and touchdowns (3) by a wide margin at the time of his injury.

WR Andrel Anthony (Oklahoma): Anthony is out for the season. He caught 27 passes for 429 yards and 1 touchdown this season before the injury.

QB Alan Bowman (Oklahoma State): The Cowboys suffered a pretty embarrassing 45-3 loss to UCF. Bowman went 19/36 for 225 yards, 0 touchdowns, and 3 interceptions. Oof.

Hit the jump for more.

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Michigan 24, Penn State 15


Blake Corum and Sherrone Moore (image via AP)

I apologize for the delayed/short post. I had a crazy busy weekend and I was on the road for much of it, so I didn't have much of a chance to write.

Great win. It shouldn't be underestimated how great of a victory this was, in light of all the distractions in recent weeks. Michigan went into Happy Valley missing its head coach, a head coach that was stupidly suspended at the end of the day on Friday with zero new information in the previous week. I postulated last Monday on Rivals that the Big Ten might make a decision late on Friday, making it impossible or at least unlikely that Michigan would be able to get an injunction/temporary restraining order in time to get Harbaugh available for Saturday. Sure enough, that's what happened. Supposedly, commissioner Tony Petitti released the suspension to the media before notifying Michigan itself, so M heard it first through the media. From a public perception standpoint, Petitti is lucky Michigan won this game, because the uproar would have been deafening if suddenly the Wolverines lost a game less than 24 hours after its head coach was suspended for such stupid reasons.

Who cares if Sherrone Moore cried? It was an emotional victory, for all the reasons mentioned above and more. I wish he didn't cuss a couple times on national TV, but he's not paid to be interviewed in an emotional moment after games. You know who is paid to do that? Jim Harbaugh. If the Big Ten wants family-friendly interviews after games, maybe they should let the guys who are head coaches coach the games and be interviewed, since that's part of their job. The cussing would be a bigger deal if it was Harbaugh, who has two decades of head coaching experience. So f*** the Big Ten.

Anyway . . .

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, November 10, 2023

Preview: Michigan at Penn State


Michigan is #52 in rushing offense (167.1 yards/game) after struggling on the ground a little bit against Purdue. They're #47 in yards per carry (4.57 yards/carry) but #5 in rushing touchdowns (25). Blake Corum (126 carries, 649 yards) leads the country in rushing touchdowns with 16. Donovan Edwards has the lowest rushing average in the conference, though, at 3.14, so it will be interesting to see how much run Kalel Mullings (27 carries, 167 yards, 1 TD) gets. Edwards had an explosive game against the Nittany Lions in 2022, but he hasn't been playing up to the same level so far this season. Penn State has the #2 rush defense (60.6 yards allowed/game) and their 2.0 yards allowed per carry ranks #2 also. Junior LB Curtis Jacobs (6'1", 235 lbs.) leads the team with 36 tackles, followed closely by sophomore LB Abdul Carter (6'3", 249) with 34, junior S Jaylen Reed (6'0", 205) with 32, and junior LB Kobe King (6'1", 242) with 30. Reed and King are both Detroit products, from MLK and Cass Tech, respectively. Up front is fifth year senior Hakeem Beamon (6'3", 290) and sophomore Zane Durant (6'1", 285), both of whom are solid tackles. Overall, the team's worst performance was week one against WVU when they gave up 146 yards and 2 touchdowns to the Mountaineers. Last week they held Maryland to -49 yards on the ground (including sacks).
Advantage: Penn State

Hit the jump for more.

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

2023 Ex-Wolverine Updates: Week 10


Ethan Burke

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TE Erick All (Iowa): All tore his ACL in week seven. He led the Hawkeyes in all receiving categories, catches (21), yards (299), and touchdowns (3) by a wide margin at the time of his injury.

WR Andrel Anthony (Oklahoma): Anthony is out for the season. He caught 27 passes for 429 yards and 1 touchdown this season before the injury.

QB Alan Bowman (Oklahoma State): Bowman completed 28/42 throws for 334 yards and ran 1 time for a 13-yard touchdown in a 27-24 win over Oklahoma.

Hit the jump for more.

Sunday, November 5, 2023

Michigan 41, Purdue 13


Blake Corum (image via The Score)

I was a little nervous. Something was gnawing at my brain going into this game, and that was whether Michigan would look sloppy against the Boilermakers in the midst of Sign-gate. I was never nervous about the outcome of the game, but just about whether it would be a tight contest. Maybe something like a 14-10 contest at halftime. Or 17-13 in the third quarter before pulling away. The distraction of Sign-gate combined with the rustiness of coming off a bye week concerned me. So I was glad to see Michigan jump out to a 17-0 lead almost immediately. But the second quarter was boring for Michigan. Michigan was outgained by Purdue, as well as outscored 6-3, sending it to halftime at 20-6.

Hit the jump for more.

Saturday, November 4, 2023

Visitors: Michigan vs. Purdue


Charlotte (NC) Providence Day QB Jadyn Davis


Jadyn Davis - QB - Charlotte (NC) Providence Day: Davis is committed to Michigan (LINK).

Jo'Ziah Edmond - CB - Nappanee (IN) Northwood: Edmond is committed to Michigan.

Channing Goodwin - WR - Charlotte (NC) Providence Day: Goodwin is committed to Michigan (LINK).

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, November 3, 2023

Preview: Michigan vs. Purdue


Michigan is #45 in rushing (174.3 yards/game) after entering last season's Big Ten Championship game against the Boilermakers at #5 in running the ball. The Wolverines are #40 in yards per carry at 4.73. Blake Corum (111 carries, 605 yards, 11 TD) leads the way, and backup Donovan Edwards (66 carries, 211 yards, 1 TD) is following behind. Kalel Mullings (23 carries, 147 yards, 1 TD) has missed time due to injury, but reports indicate he should be back this week. Purdue is #83 in rushing defense (153.8 yards allowed/game) and #70 in yards per carry allowed (4.07). They're tied with Michigan at tackles for loss per game (6.75), led by senior OLB Kydran Jenkins (6'1", 260 lbs.) with 11.5 tackles for loss and sophomore OLB Nic Scourton (6'4", 280) with 10.0. Freshman S Dillon Thieneman (6'0", 205) leads the team and is #3 in the conference in tackles with 74, followed by sophomore S Sanoussi Kane (6'0", 215) with 58. Purdue head coach Ryan Walters earned the head job after being a standout defensive coordinator at Illinois, but it might take a couple years to get the right guys in place and get them reacting instead of thinking.
Advantage: Michigan

Hit the jump for more.

Wednesday, November 1, 2023

2023 Ex-Wolverine Updates: Week 9


Xavier Worthy

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TE Erick All (Iowa): All tore his ACL in week seven. He led the Hawkeyes in all receiving categories, catches (21), yards (299), and touchdowns (3) by a wide margin at the time of his injury.

WR Andrel Anthony (Oklahoma): Anthony is out for the season. He caught 27 passes for 429 yards and 1 touchdown this season before the injury.

QB Alan Bowman (Oklahoma State): Bowman completed 17/34 passes for 286 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 interception in a 45-13 win over Cincinnati.

Hit the jump for more.

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

2024 Recruiting Update: October 31, 2023


(image via @UMichFootball on Twitter)


Kewan Lacy - RB - Lancaster (TX) Lancaster: Lacy (3-star, #30 RB, #351 overall) decommitted from Nebraska. Alabama, Florida, and Ole Miss are all in the mix, and the current crystal ball leader is Ole Miss. Michigan seems pretty set at running back with Micah Ka'apana and Jordan Marshall.

Drelon Miller - WR - Silsbee (TX) Silsbee: Miller (4-star, #14 WR, #66 overall) decommitted from Texas A&M after having been committed to the Aggies since June. He had 59 catches for 1,401 yards and 21 touchdowns as a junior in 2022. His two official visits went to Miami and USC.

Joseph Stone - WR - Fairburn (GA) Langston Hughes: Stone (4-star, #46 WR, #300 overall) decommitted from LSU after pledging to the Tigers in July, just a couple weeks after being offered. It's a little surprising that a talented receiver would leave LSU since they have two of the best receivers in the country in Malik Nabers and Brian Thomas.

Hit the jump for more.

Thursday, October 26, 2023

Michigan's 10 Longest Plays vs. Purdue


Tony Boles

If you're like me and you enjoy big plays, here are some great ones against the Boilermakers over the years:

  1. Tony Boles 85-yard kickoff return TD (1989)
  2. Rick Leach 83-yard TD pass to Jim Smith (1975)
  3. Chuck Ortmann 82-yard kickoff return (1949)
  4. Martavious Odoms 73-yard punt return TD (2008)
  5. Dave Glinka 72-yard TD pass to Bennie McRae (1961)
  6. Jim Harbaugh 65-yard TD pass to John Kolesar (1985)
  7. Phil Webb 65-yard TD run (1985)
  8. Rick Leach 64-yard TD pass to Jim Smith (1976)
  9. Raymon Taylor 63-yard interception return TD (2012)
  10. Steve Smith 62-yard TD pass to Anthony Carter (1982)

Hit the jump for some clips.

Michigan's 10 Longest Plays vs. Michigan State


Dennis Fitzgerald (image via Go Blue History)

If you're like me and you enjoy big plays, here are some great ones against the Spartans over the years:

  1. Dennis Fitzgerald 99-yard kickoff return touchdown (1960)
  2. Desmond Howard 95-yard kickoff return touchdown (1990)
  3. Cade McNamara 93-yard touchdown pass to Andrel Anthony, Jr. (2021)
  4. Drew Henson 81-yard touchdown pass to Marcus Knight (1999)
  5. Derrick Alexander 80-yard punt return touchdown (1992)
  6. Shea Patterson 79-yard touchdown pass to Donovan Peoples-Jones (2018)
  7. Rob Lytle 75-yard touchdown run (1976)
  8. Mike Sainristil 72-yard interception return touchdown (2023)
  9. Anthony Thomas 69-yard touchdown run (1998)
  10. Tom Hendricks 67-yard punt return touchdown (1954)

Hit the jump for some clips.

2023 Ex-Wolverine Updates: Week 8


Eyabi Okie-Anoma (image via Charlotte Athletics)

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TE Erick All (Iowa): All tore his ACL in week seven. He led the Hawkeyes in all receiving categories, catches (21), yards (299), and touchdowns (3) by a wide margin at the time of his injury.

WR Andrel Anthony (Oklahoma): Anthony is out for the season. He caught 27 passes for 429 yards and 1 touchdown this season before the injury.

QB Alan Bowman (Oklahoma State): Bowman completed 24/38 throws for 210 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 1 interception in a 48-34 win over West Virginia.

Hit the jump for more.

Sunday, October 22, 2023

Michigan 49, Michigan State 0


Michigan 49, Michigan State 0 (image via AP/Al Goldis)

Emotional edge FTW. Going into this game, I felt like Michigan had more of a reason to win this game. I mean, aside from the fact that Michigan State sucks and surely really wanted to win because sucking isn't fun, Michigan should have had more of a reason. This stems mostly from the fact that Gemon Green and Ja'den McBurrows were viciously attacked in the tunnel last year. But this past week's cheating allegations probably cheesed off the Wolverines quite a bit since their accomplishments were considered to be tainted by some. But it seems like emotion sometimes forces players and/or coaches to press. So in my game preview, I predicted a 34-10 victory. I thought Michigan might come out a little slow, might get caught by a trick play, etc. But it turns out Michigan didn't have any trick plays up their sleeve. They didn't really have much of anything up their sleeve.

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, October 20, 2023

Preview: Michigan at Michigan State


Michigan is #41 in rushing offense (182 yards/game) and #35 in yards per carry (4.88). I thought Michigan might take off a little bit against Indiana last week, which had the #91 rushing defense, but that didn't happen so much. Blake Corum (96 carries, 546 yards, 12 touchdowns) leads the way . . . and that includes nationally, because he tops the country in rushing touchdowns. Donovan Edwards has been a disappointment on the ground, averaging just 3.28 yards/carry this year, but he did break through with his first touchdown of the year last week. Kalel Mullings (23 carries, 147 yards, 1 TD) and Ben Hall (11 carries, 60 yards) are also options. Michigan State is #33 in rushing defense (114.8 yards allowed/game) and #36 in yards allowed per carry (3.48). They have only allowed 3 rushing touchdowns this year, which is tied for #8 nationally. But last week against Rutgers, MSU allowed Kyle Monongai to run 24 times for 148 yards and a touchdown. The teams they have shut down in the run game include FCS Richmond, Central Michigan, and the inept Iowa offense. Junior LB Cal Haladay (6'1", 235 lbs.) leads the team with 41 tackles, followed by S Malik Spencer (6'1", 195) with 36 and CB Dillon Tatum (5'11", 200) with 30. The leaders in tackles for loss include DE Zion Young (6'6", 265) with 4.5 and Haladay with 4. They're tied at #67 in tackles for loss per game with 5.83. I have a feeling that Michigan might try to bludgeon MSU, and considering the fact that the Spartans have only had success against weak teams, this might be a day for Blake Corum to have a signature performance.
Advantage: Michigan

Hit the jump for more.

Former Michigan Athlete of the Week: Josh Metellus


Josh Metellus

Minnesota Vikings captain and safety Josh Metellus had one of his best games as a professional, totaling 8 tackles with 1 sack and 1 forced fumble in a 19-13 win over the Chicago Bears. That fumble was returned for a touchdown. Unfortunately, it was on rookie quarterback Tyson Bagent out of Shepherd University and not Ohio State product Justin Fields, who is expected to be out for a few weeks with a dislocated thumb.


  • RB Zach Charbonnet (Seahawks): Charbonnet ran the ball 9 times for 46 yards in a 37-27 win over the Panthers.
  • WR Nico Collins (Texans): Collins caught 4 passes, including three for first downs, and 80 yards in a 20-13 win over the Saints.
  • DE Brandon Graham (Eagles): Graham made 2 tackles and 0.5 sacks in a 20-14 loss to the Jets.
  • S Dax Hill (Bengals): Hill made 8 tackles and 2 pass breakups in a 17-13 win over the Seahawks.
  • LB Khaleke Hudson (Commanders): Hudson made 3 tackles in a 24-16 win over the Falcons.
  • DT Maurice Hurst, Jr.: Hurst made 2 tackles and 1 tackle for loss in the Browns' 27-3 victory over the Titans.
  • DE Aidan Hutchinson (Lions): Hutchinson made 3 tackles in a 20-6 win over the Buccaneers.
  • CB Jourdan Lewis (Cowboys): Lewis made 3 tackles in a 20-17 win over the Chargers.
  • S Jabrill Peppers (Patriots): Peppers made 7 tackles and 2 pass breakups in a 21-17 loss to the Raiders.
  • TE Luke Schoonmaker (Cowboys): Schoonmaker made his first professional catch for 1 yard. Unfortunately, he was targeted six times and reeled in just the one catch, but a journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step.
  • CB D.J. Turner II (Bengals): Turner made 4 stops in a 17-13 win over the Seahawks.

2023 Ex-Wolverine Updates: Week 7


Erick All

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TE Erick All (Iowa): All had 2 catches for 19 yards in Iowa's 19-6 win over Wisconsin, but the bigger news was that he suffered a nasty knee injury on his second catch. All leads the Hawkeyes in all receiving categories, catches (21), yards (299), and touchdowns (3) by a wide margin.

WR Andrel Anthony (Oklahoma): Anthony is out for the season. He caught 27 passes for 429 yards and 1 touchdown this season before the injury.

QB Alan Bowman (Oklahoma State): Bowman completed 28/41 passes for 336 yards, 2 touchdowns, and 0 interceptions in a 39-32 win over Kansas. As good as those numbers sound, that's just his sixth-highest passing yardage total in a game. His highest total was when he threw for 605 yards against Houston as a freshman for Texas Tech in 2018.

Hit the jump for more.

Sunday, October 15, 2023

Michigan 52, Indiana 7


Colston Loveland (image via Yahoo! Sports)

Run the damn ball. Coming into the game, Indiana was ranked #91 in rushing defense. And it was raining. So naturally, Michigan decided to come out throwing, with four pass plays and two rushes in the first six plays. Two of those pass plays resulted in sacks, and one was a drop by Colston Loveland. Meanwhile, the two carries by Corum averaged 4.5 yards per rush. Michigan wasn't necessarily going to obliterate Indiana on the ground with huge runs, but they could have just taken over the game physically instead of trying to throw in those conditions.

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, October 13, 2023

Preview: Michigan vs. Indiana


(Image via Craig Bisacre/Indiana Athletics)

Michigan ranks #38 in rushing offense (185.2 yards/game) and #26 in yards per carry (5.07). Blake Corum's 5.95 yards/carry ranks sixth in the conference, while backup Donovan Edwards's mystifying 3.47 yards/carry ranks #32, lowest of any qualifying back in the conference. Kalel Mullings has stepped up his game with 23 carries for 147 yards and 1 touchdown this year. Michigan seems to have found a solidified starting five up front with Arizona State transfer La'Darius Henderson at left tackle and Karsen Barnhart at right tackle. Indiana is #91 in rushing defense (156.4 yards allowed/game) and allowed Akron's Lorenzo Lingard over 8.0 yards/carry a few weeks ago, along with 10+ yards per rush to Maryland's Antwaine Littlejohn despite his not getting above 3.7 against any other opponent. They give up 4.74 yards per carry, which ranks #108 in the nation. Having watched some of Indiana this year, their tackling is the worst I've seen it in Tom Allen's seven years at the helm. Fifth year senior middle linebacker Aaron Casey (6'2", 235 lbs.) leads the squad with 43 stops, followed by sophomore strong safety Phillip Dunnam (6'1", 190) and senior free safety Louis Moore (6'1", 190) with 35 and 25, respectively.
Advantage: Michigan

Hit the jump for more.

Sunday, October 8, 2023

Michigan 52, Minnesota 10


Cornelius Johnson (image via Star Tribune)

Zone coverage FTW. There was a time when we lamented that Michigan defensive backs were terrible at looking back and finding the ball. There were interceptions to be had, but Michigan didn't, you know, have them. Don Brown had the defensive backs in chase mode all the time, and even though he was really good at his defensive coordinator job - Ohio State be damned - he hated zone defense. In this game a dose of zone coverage was enough to confuse inexperienced Minnesota quarterback Athan Kaliakmanis, and he threw more touchdown passes to Michigan's guys (Will Johnson, Keon Sabb) than his own. In fact, he completed just 5/15 passes for 52 yards, 35 of which came on the final offensive play of the first half, a virtual Hail Mary that happened to come down in the hands of a diving Daniel Jackson for the Gophers' only touchdown of the night. That passing total was the fewest amount allowed by Michigan since they allowed 24 against UConn in 2022.

Hit the jump for more.

Friday, October 6, 2023

Preview: Michigan at Minnesota


Michigan is #31 in rushing offense (184 yards/game) and #33 in yards per carry (4.95). Blake Corum is at 5.74 yards per carry and is tied for the national lead rushing touchdowns with 9 despite being tied for #31 in rushing attempts. (The other two players with 9 scores are Marshall's Rasheen Ali and Georgia State's Marcus Carroll, who have 91 and 115 carries, respectively, compared to Corum's 74.) Kalel Mullings had his first kind of breakout game with 5 carries for 43 yards last week and now has 15 attempts for 100 yards, including a 20-yard touchdown last Saturday. Donovan Edwards has been clunking along at 3.34 yards/carry (3.43 last week, though!) so we're still waiting for him to show his elite capabilities in the open field. Minnesota is #54 in rushing defense (127.2 yards allowed/game) and #81 in yards allowed per carry (4.18). Somehow they held North Carolina to 2.84 yards/carry a few weeks ago, but last week Louisiana-Lafayette carved them up for 177 yards on just 27 attempts. Freshman linebacker Maverick Baranowski (6'3", 230) leads the team with 35 tackles, followed by senior safety Jack Henderson (6'3", 215) with 30 and sophomore safety Darius Green (6'1", 200) with 27. The Golden Gophers play a 3-4 look with senior Kyler Baugh (6'2", 305) at nose tackle, where he has 4.0 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks on the year. Baranowski has 3.0 tackles for loss and JACK linebacker Danny Striggow (6'5", 255) has 4.0, so they're decent at getting into the backfield at times. But Michigan should have good success in the run game.
Advantage: Michigan

Hit the jump for more.

Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Michigan 45, Nebraska 7


Kenneth Grant (image via AP)

That was domination. More so than any other game this season, that felt like Michigan truly dominated the team across from them. Despite winning by 24+ points against every other team on the schedule, it seemed like Michigan had gone through some rough stretches, including being down early against Rutgers and struggling for a while with Bowling Green. But right from the start, it seemed like Michigan just had way too much for Nebraska to handle. The #2 rushing defense in the country gave up 249 yards rushing to the Wolverines at 4.9 yards per carry. Punter Tommy Doman was only needed once - other than holding on kicks - and boomed his 1 punt for 65 yards. The only thing preventing Michigan from having a 45-0 shutout was a late 74-yard run by Joshua Fleeks, who sliced through a bunch of backups. Credit to him and Nebraska for not giving up, but it was indeed a garbage time score.

Hit the jump for more.

Monday, October 2, 2023

Michigan's 10 Longest Plays vs. Minnesota


Steve Breaston

Michigan has played Minnesota 104 times throughout history and has a 76-25-3 record against the Golden Gophers. They first played in 1892, and the winner of the game after each meeting earns the Little Brown Jug Trophy.

Here are the longest plays for Michigan in the history of the rivalry:

  1. Steve Breaston 95-yard kickoff return TD (2005)
  2. Chris Howard 86-yard TD run (1996)
  3. Gilvanni Johnson 85-yard punt return TD (1985)
  4. Carlos Brown 85-yard TD run (2007)
  5. Darrell Harper 84-yard punt return TD (1959)
  6. Courtney Avery 83-yard fumble return TD (2011)
  7. Karan Higdon 77-yard TD run (2017)
  8. Tom Brady 76-yard TD pass to Tai Streets (1998)
  9. Lowell Perry 75-yard punt return TD (1951)
  10. Steve Smith 75-yard TD run (1983)
  11. Scott Dreisbach 75-yard TD pass to Amani Toomer (1995)

Hit the jump for videos of Breaston and Brown.