Michigan Football Preview 2015

2015 Michigan Football Preview

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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THE WOLVERINE 2015 FOOTBALL PREVIEW ■ 87 OFFENSIVE LINE place for him to be able to play with power and strength because he's a big, physical guy. You watch him walk through the office and say, 'What the heck! That is one big, good looking guy.' "He and Graham are good friends, and Graham does a good job of leading in there. Those two do a good job communicating back in there, so that's pretty cool." On the other side, Kalis continues to make strides toward living up to his lofty potential out of high school. The former five-star, Rivals. com's No. 22 player overall in the 2012 class, might be the nastiest of the group up front, but he's still working on the footwork, fundamen- tals and technique needed to be a top-tier Big Ten offensive lineman. He came a long way in the spring, Drevno said. He also has the ben- efit of staying at the position where he started seven games a year ago. "He's doing a great job … he's done a nice job in the weight room and is a big, strong guy," Drevno said. "I think his best football is ahead of him. I'm excited to watch him compete and play at a high level. "Football is very, very important to him. It's important to him that he competes at a high level and executes for his teammates, and he takes a lot of pride in his work, which is really neat to see." On the outside, there are still question marks at both tackle posi- tions. Two years ago, the Wolverines had the Big Ten's best pair in Lewan and Schofield, a duo among the best in the country. Cole played well for a true freshman, but U-M often cheated a running back or tight end his way to help him out, limiting their options in the passing game. That shouldn't be the case this year — at least not as often. Cole is bigger and stronger and much better equipped for the Big Ten after adding strength and going through trial by fire. "He's got football awareness, good instincts and he's got good feet," Drevno said. "He can bend, plays with leverage, gets both cleats in the ground and has good ankle flexion." And his athleticism is exactly what Drevno is looking for in a left tackle. "Any time you've got guys rushing around the edges, you want to have that tackle be able to move his feet," he said. "You usually want taller type guys like Mason who are also able to bend. That's the skill set you look for. "He does some great things out there, and my job is to put the best five guys on the field and line them up where they can be successful at that position. Right now, he's doing a good job at the left tackle spot." Magnuson, meanwhile, has proven to be the best option at right tackle, at least coming out of the spring. He lost his starting guard job last year and was even used as a tight end in blocking situations last year, but he's got plenty of experience and is extremely versatile. "He's a guy who is a journeyman," Drevno said. "We can plug him in a lot of different positions in there. He's also got good football awareness, and really good balance. He's got good core strength, so he doesn't play on the ground a lot. He's always up on his feet and understands the blocking angles." Magnuson has started 11 of the 20 games in which he's appeared, though he has yet to start at tackle. That's no concern to Drevno. "He has really good football savvy and can execute really well wherever we put him," Drevno said. "The thought right now is that Last season, left tackle Mason Cole became the fi rst true freshman in Michigan history to start a season opener on the offensive line. PHOTO BY PER KJELDSEN Rush Yards Yards Year Rush Yards Total Yards Per Game Per Rush 2014 1,954 3,996 162.8 4.6 2013 1,634 4,855 125.7 3.3 2012 2,389 4,980 183.8 4.8 2011 2,884 5,261 221.8 5.2 2010 3,101 6,353 238.5 5.6 2009 2,234 4,614 186.2 4.5 2008 1,771 3,489 147.6 3.9 2007 2,144 5,006 164.9 4.0 2006 2,282 4,820 175.5 4.3 2005 1,939 4,611 161.6 3.9 Rushing Yards Year-By-Year "Nothing is ever shut down in terms of a starting fi ve. Every day they'll come out to compete to see who the best is, and guys progress at different times." OFFENSIVE COORDINATOR AND LINE COACH TIM DREVNO

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