Michigan Football Preview 2013

2013 Michigan Football Preview

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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area, and his commitment to Michigan was something of a homecoming after he moved to Kansas City for his final two years of high school. His position on this list is fittingly in a tie with one of his childhood heroes, fellow Saginaw native Woodley. He earned playing time during his true freshman season in 2012, making seven total tackles and sharing a tackle for loss. While he's likely to spend one more year as a member of the rotation, he should get a chance to earn a starting spot during his final two years in Ann Arbor. 14. Brandon Graham, DE Class of 2006, No. 15 Nationally Crockett Technical H.S./Detroit Graham had a chance to learn from the best during his true freshman year, playing behind then-senior LaMarr Woodley. Upon Woodley's departure, Graham took over the vacated defensive end position for his final three years in Ann Arbor. During the 2008 and 2009 seasons, he was a rare bright spot on a struggling defense. For his career, Graham made 138 total tackles and is second in program history with 55.5 tackles for loss. He also sacked the opposing quarterback 29.5 times, broke up three passes, forced eight fumbles and recovered three fumbles. He was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in 2010, but his NFL career has been stunted by injury. Brady Hoke's Best Brady Hoke's coaching staff has already accomplished plenty in their three recruiting seasons at Michigan. Here are the top-100 players Hoke has landed so far. Player Justice Hayes Ondre Pipkins Kyle Kalis Erik Magnuson Derrick Green Henry Poggi Shane Morris Pat Kugler Jabrill Peppers Drake Harris Pos.RankHometown 2011 RB 85 Grand Blanc, Mich. 2012 DT 14 Kansas City, Mo. OL 22 Lakewood, Ohio OL 78 Carlsbad, Calif. 2013 RB 8 Richmond, Va. DT 70 Baltimore QB 81 Warren, Mich. OL 82 Wexford, Pa. 2014 CB 2 Paramus, N.J. WR 57 Grand Rapids, Mich. 15. Pat Massey, DT Class of 2001, No. 18 St. Ignatius H.S./Cleveland The 6-8 Massey came to Michigan as a 235-pound defensive end and redshirted his freshman year. He then spent a year as a backup before starting at defensive tackle (weighing just 262 pounds) during his redshirt sophomore year. He had trouble keeping on weight throughout his U-M career, and his height made it difficult to play with great leverage on the interior of the defensive line. Still, the three-year starter finished with 96 tackles, 14 stops for loss, 10 sacks, five passes broken up and two forced fumbles during his Michigan career. He has not played in the NFL. The Next Five 16. Kelly Baraka • RB Class of 2001, No. 19 player in the country Never saw the field and left Michigan after his freshman year. 17. Marlin Jackson • CB Class of 2001, No. 20 Two-time All-America selection and sixyear NFL vet. 18. Maurice Williams • DL Class of 1997, No. 21 12-game starter as a senior. 19. Kyle Kalis • OL Class of 2012, No. 22 Redshirted as a freshman in 2012. 20. Markus Curry • CB Class of 2001, No. 28 Three-year contributor and two-year starter. Defensive end Brandon Graham was named the Big Ten's MVP after his senior campaign, and he finished his career with 138 total stops, 55.5 tackles for loss and 29.5 sacks. photo by per kjeldsen Going Forward What's most encouraging for Michigan's current trajectory is the number of players on this list who are currently in the program. Defensive tackle Ondre Pipkins and offen- 254  ■  The Wolverine 2013 Football Preview Stats 18 carries, 83 yards, 1 TD 7 Tackles, 1 TFL Redshirted 2012 Redshirted 2012 Enrolls in fall Enrolls in fall Enrolls in fall Enrolls in fall Committed Committed sive lineman Kyle Kalis just finished year one at Michigan, and both seem to be on track to work their way up the depth chart. Pipkins played as a freshman, should see his role increase as a sophomore and has a chance in 2014 and 2015 to seize a starting role. While Kalis redshirted during his freshman year, that's the norm for offensive linemen, even the best ones. He is expected to earn a starting position during his redshirt freshman campaign and could be on track for a fouryear grip on one of the guard spots up front. Although Derrick Green hasn't even carried the ball in a Michigan helmet, the 6-1, 230-pound power back is the right fit for the pro-style offense that Michigan's coaches want to run. The offensive line is coming together ahead of him, and — perhaps most importantly — he should have the chance to compete for a starting job as a freshman, with returning starter Fitzgerald Toussaint coming back from a significant leg injury. U-M running backs coach Fred Jackson is excited for the potential Green brings. "That kid is [the high school version of former U-M All-American] Chris Perry but faster," Jackson raved. "He runs like every carry will be his last." Green and now Peppers are the first top10 national prospects to choose Michigan since Mallett in 2007. By the time both are on the roster, four of Michigan's 20 highestrated recruits will be on campus at the same time (joining Pipkins and Kalis). While that still pales in comparison to the glory days of the 1997-98 classes, when seven in the top 20 (quarterback Drew Henson, running backs Justin Fargas and Anthony Thomas, wide receivers David Terrell and Marquise Walker, defensive back James Whitley and defensive lineman Maurice Williams) signed with Michigan, it is a clear uptick for U-M on the recruiting trail. ❑

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