Michigan Football Preview 2017

2017 Michigan Football Preview

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Penn State and linebacker Jason Cabinda took down quarterback J.T. Barrett and Ohio State in the regular season last year en route to winning the Big Ten championship. PHOTO COURTESY PENN STATE BY AUSTIN FOX M ichigan returns just five starters from last year's team that fin- ished 10-3, and as a result many experts anticipate the Wolver- ines will take a step back in 2017. Consider- ing how much talent is departing from last season's squad, that may be a fair expectation. While several of the nation's elite programs (Alabama, Ohio State, etc.) simply reload year after year, some wonder whether Michigan is at that point — yet. The Wolverines are ex- pected to get there under head coach Jim Har- baugh, and how successful they are in 2017 will show whether or not they've reached that destination. Other than at quarterback and defensive line, Michigan will rely heavily on youngsters at every position on the field. Granted, the young new starters will be extremely talented, but they also are inexperienced. If the new crop of starters progress slower than expected, Michigan will definitely take a step back from last year. If they develop faster than anticipated, though, the Wolverines should contend for a spot in the College Foot- ball Playoff once again. Here is our Big Ten preview heading into the 2017 season:

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