2017 Season Countdown: #67 Andrew Stueber

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21Jun 2017
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2017 Season Countdown: #67 Andrew Stueber

Andrew Stueber (image via GameTimeCT)

Name: Andrew Stueber
Height: 6’7″
Weight: 290 lbs.
High school: Darien (CT) Darien
Position: Offensive tackle
Class: Freshman
Jersey number: N/A
Last year: Stueber was a senior in high school.
TTB Rating: 82

Stueber committed to Michigan almost exactly a year ago, and there were the customary complaints about, “Why are we taking a 3-star? And one from Connecticut?” And while Stueber was indeed a 3-star, and from Connecticut, I’m not too concerned. He’s a big body, he moves well, he bends pretty well, and he’s willing to block downfield. With offensive line recruiting often being a crapshoot, that’s about all you can ask for from a guy.

As for this season, I think Stueber might end up playing, although I don’t think he’ll be an impact guy. Jim Harbaugh isn’t afraid of playing freshmen, and the Wolverines have a need on the offensive line this year. The right tackle position is unsettled, and while Jon Runyan, Jr. might have the inside track right now, he’s not a perfect fit. Other options include freshman Chuck Filiaga and redshirt junior Juwann Bushell-Beatty, both of whom have concerns about whether they’re physically in shape. I’m guessing Stueber won’t ever be a guy who gets sloppy with his body makeup, so if he’s been hitting the weight room in the off-season, he could be one of the top seven or eight guys when September rolls around.

Prediction: Backup offensive tackle

21Jun 2017
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2017 Season Countdown: #68 Nico Collins

Nico Collins

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Name: Nico Collins
Height: 6’4″
Weight: 210 lbs.
High school: Pinson (AL) Clay-Chalkville
Position: Wide receiver
Class: Freshman
Jersey number: N/A
Last year: Collins was a senior in high school. He caught 60 passes for 1,103 yards and 16 touchdowns.
TTB Rating:

The recruitment of Collins was a bit of a strange one. Michigan offered, he visited, and he loved it. He was rumored to be a silent commitment for several months, but then a late surge from Georgia seemed to pull him away. On a visit to Athens, he apparently was told some bad news that they couldn’t take him, and he ended up signing with the Wolverines. He might be the least hyped receiver of Michigan’s four wideouts in the class, and yet he’s a 247 Composite 4-star, the #23 wide receiver, and #136 overall.

Collins is a large receiver, though not quite big enough to warrant rumors about switching to tight end. He’s not amazingly fast or shifty for his size, but he’s a huge target with a wide catching radius. He’s more likely to fend off defensive backs with a stiff-arm than a burst of speed, and that might be a good complement to the other guys on the roster. Recent experience with large receivers makes me think that he won’t be a heavy immediate contributor, but redshirts also seem to be a rarity. I think Collins will play this fall, but Michigan probably won’t rely on him for a ton of production.

Prediction: Backup wide receiver

20Jun 2017
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2017 Season Countdown: #69 Elysee Mbem-Bosse

Elysee Mbem-Bosse (image via Scout)

Name: Elysee Mbem-Bosse
Height: 6’3″
Weight: 215 lbs.
High school: Ellenwood (GA) Cedar Grove
Position: Linebacker
Class: Sophomore
Jersey number: #52
Last year: I ranked Mbem-Bosse #58 and said he would be a backup linebacker. He played in 7 games.
TTB Rating: 78

Mbem-Bosse is one of those guys who magically got a lot lighter once he got to college. Listed at 232 lbs. in high school and now pegged at 215, he looked pretty small in 2016 and mainly got special teams time. Don Brown mostly rotated three guys (Ben Gedeon, Mike McCray II, and Devin Bush) at the two inside linebacker positions, and Mbem-Bosse wasn’t even in the conversation.

He still hasn’t been discussed much this spring. Brown is talking about a rotation of McCray, Bush, and walk-on Mike Wroblewski, and there’s always a chance that some of the heavily recruited freshmen jump ahead of him, too. Mbem-Bosse needs to pack on some weight before he’s a viable option at middle linebacker. With McCray and Wroblewski both graduating after the 2017 season, Mbem-Bosse likely has to wait until 2018 or beyond for a real shot at serious playing time.

Prediction: Backup linebacker, special teamer

20Jun 2017
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2017 Season Countdown: #70 Chuck Filiaga

Chuck Filiaga (center, image via 247 Sports)

Name: Chuck Filiaga
Height: 6’6″
Weight: 340 lbs.
High school: Aledo (TX) Aledo
Position: Offensive tackle
Class: Freshman
Jersey number: N/A
Last year: Filiaga was a senior in high school.
TTB Rating: 86

Filiaga was the prize of Michigan’s offensive line recruiting class in 2017. The U.S. Army All-American was the #14 offensive tackle and #113 overall. Michigan won out against stiff competition for his commitment, and he joins a team that needs contributions on the offensive line. After losing three fifth-year senior starters, as well as starting left tackle Grant Newsome to injury, there’s a fair amount of uncertainty.

Coming out of the spring, the projected starter at right tackle is redshirt sophomore Jon Runyan, Jr., who was expected to be a center or guard when he was a college prospect. Filiaga will have a chance to unseat Runyan and/or others on the offensive line, but according to some reports, he was the least prepared offensive lineman on the U.S. Army Bowl roster, and that’s not surprising. He’s too heavy at 6’6″ and 340 lbs., and his weight is not distributed well, since he’s somewhat top-heavy. He needs to reconfigure his body somewhat, and he also has some technique issues to fix. He might play this season out of necessity, but anyone expecting early solid play from him is likely to be disappointed.

Prediction: Backup offensive tackle

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