Michigan Football Preview 2016

2016 Michigan Football Preview

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Page 169 of 179

168 ■ THE WOLVERINE 2016 FOOTBALL PREVIEW BY CHRIS BALAS B rady Hoke didn't have much time to assemble his first re‑ cruiting class after Rich Rodriguez was let go shortly after Michigan's 2011 Gator Bowl loss to Mississippi State. The former U‑M head coach and his staff scrambled to keep commitments while filling the last several slots in less than a month. Perhaps, then, it's not all that surprising that the Wolverines struggled in years three and four of the Hoke era. U‑M lost 10 of its 27 2010 pledges after only one year, and 16 members of that group didn't finish their careers at Michigan. The following class didn't fare much better — in fact, walk‑on offensive lineman Graham Glasgow, might have been the best of the bunch. Glasgow finished his career having played 42 career games, and 22 (13 in 2015 and nine in 2013) of his 37 starts came at center. He won the Hugh R. Rader Memorial Award as the team's top offensive line‑ man and earned honorable mention All‑Big Ten accolades from both the coaches and media in 2015, but he will not be included in any of the reviews of the class since he came in as a walk‑on. Thinned Out U-M Didn't Get Much Help From Its 2011 Recruiting Class Top Storylines FAILURE TO START …: Every class has its non- contributors, or those who play in a limited capacity, but the 2011 class featured seven players (out of 20 — that's 35 percent) who never played a down for the Wolverines. Three of them — tight end Chris Barnett, linebacker Kellen Jones and offensive lineman Tony Posada — never made it out of fall camp before leav- ing the program. Since Rivals.com started tracking recruiting classes in 2003, only the maligned 2010 class has had as many kids leave the program before ever seeing the field at Michigan. … AND FAILURE TO FINISH: In 2010, 16 of the Wolverines' 27 signees didn't finish their careers at Michigan. Some were out of football due to injury, and several others transferred to new schools. The number ballooned from 59 percent in 2010 to 75 percent in 2011 — 15 out of 20 — leaving a huge hole in upper- classman leadership in 2013 and 2014. In fact, Michigan figures to have only two less se- niors in the starting lineup in 2016 than were on the roster combined at the end of the seasons in 2013 and 2014. LINEBACKER FLAME OUT: Of the linebackers signed in 2010 and 2011, only two — Jake Ryan in 2010 (now with the Green Bay Packers) and Desmond Morgan in 2011 — ever contributed meaningful min- utes at the position. Frank Clark (2011) moved to defensive end and Marvin Robinson (2010) moved to safety — none of the others panned out, resulting in a void in the middle of the defense. Morgan was forced to start games as a freshman as a result. RUTHLESS RIVALS: Michigan went 4-10 in games against Notre Dame, Michigan State and Ohio State from 2011-15. The Wolverines were 2-2 against the Irish, winning home night games in 2011 and 2013; were 1-4 versus MSU, capturing a 12-10 win in 2012; and finished 1-4 against the Buckeyes, winning 41-35 in 2011. Only five players — linebacker Morgan, defensive end Clark, kicker Matt Wile, running back Thomas Rawls (on special teams) and defensive back Blake Countess — were ever on the field for a win over the Buckeyes. Despite starting his career as a walk-on, offensive lineman Graham Glasgow was one of the most successful members of the 2011 recruiting class and was selected by the Detroit Lions in the third round of the 2016 NFL Draft. PHOTO BY BRANDON BROWN

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