Who might not return on offense in 2018?

Tag: Eddie McDoom


7Dec 2017
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Who might not return on offense in 2018?

Ian Bunting (image via Land of 10)

As I looked at the scholarship count for 2018 (LINK), there were a number of names that stuck out of guys who don’t have a clear path to playing time. This post is intended to examine some of those players’ potential to contribute in the future. This is NOT based on any rumors, but simply logic.

QUARTERBACK: With just four players on scholarship for 2018 – including two true freshmen – it wouldn’t make much sense for anyone to leave. Brandon Peters (RS So.) should be the #1 guy, and Dylan McCaffrey (RS Fr.) would presumably be the primary backup. Both of them were recruited by Jim Harbaugh, and both of them are talented, 4-star guys. The one guy who could throw a wrench into those plans is Shea Patterson, a potential transfer from Ole Miss (LINK).

FULLBACK: Michigan loses its top two guys at fullback, but the next guy will be just a sophomore in 2018, and that’s Ben Mason. With Mason looking like the clear front-runner to start, it wouldn’t make a lot of sense for Jared Wangler (RS Sr.) to return in 2018. Not only was Wangler a linebacker for his first few years on campus, but he was at least fourth on the depth chart this season. There are walk-ons who could surpass him, and so far Michigan hasn’t deployed a fullback as light as him (229 lbs.) under Jim Harbaugh

RUNNING BACK: Departures happen all the time, and it wouldn’t surprise me at all if someone leaves in the next year or two. However, the running backs are spaced out pretty well, from senior Karan Higdon to junior Chris Evans to redshirt sophomore Kareem Walker to the freshmen.

WIDE RECEIVER: Drake Harris and Maurice Ways, Jr. have already chosen to depart, so that thins the ranks a little bit, but Michigan brought in four wideouts in the 2017 class. With a lot of trust being put in Donovan Peoples-Jones and Tarik Black, there seemed to be less and less emphasis on Kekoa Crawford and Eddie McDoom this year than expected. Neither one redshirted and both could go elsewhere to have two years of eligibility left. Much like the Shea Patterson situation, the potential arrival of Ole Miss’s Van Jefferson could be disruptive to their careers, too.

TIGHT END: The departure that makes the most sense is Ian Bunting (RS Sr.). I thought Bunting was going to replace Jake Butt pretty well, but instead, Bunting was passed up by every other scholarship tight end on the roster, all of whom are younger. Zach Gentry (RS Jr.), Sean McKeon (Jr.), Tyrone Wheatley, Jr. (RS Jr.), and even Nick Eubanks (RS So.) were used earlier in the season and/or games than Bunting. Bunting had just 1 catch for 6 yards on the season. Along the same lines, Wheatley is getting older and seems to have two guys ahead of him (Gentry and McKeon).

OFFENSIVE LINE: With the uncertainty on the offensive line and two seniors graduating (Mason Cole, Patrick Kugler), there are two starting spots available, and Michigan likes to use six or seven linemen a game for random formations and short yardage stuff.

16Oct 2017
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Michigan vs. Indiana Awards

Karan Higdon

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Ty Isaac, Chris Evans, and Lavert Hill. WTF? Yeah, I listed two running backs and a cornerback. Michigan needs to think outside the box as they game plan moving forward. Hill was a productive receiver and special teams player in high school, and Michigan should try to get the ball in his hands in limited ways. Put together a package with him as a slot receiver, which would offer a different dimension than running out three or four tight ends. As for Isaac and Evans, they’re better players than guys like Maurice Ways and Tyrone Wheatley, Jr. A couple years ago against Maryland, Michigan trotted out a full house backfield for a stretch. Maybe having Isaac, Evans, and Karan Higdon in the game at the same time isn’t a perfect trio, but two of those guys with Khalid Hill and/or Ben Mason might make for an interesting combination.

Hit the jump for more awards from Saturday’s game.

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18Sep 2017
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Michigan vs. Air Force Awards

Zach Gentry (image via Scout)

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Zach Gentry. Gentry’s snaps seem to have increased over the past week or two, and his targets have, too. After not recording a reception in week one, he has 3 catches for 71 yards in the last two games. It was mentioned during the broadcast yesterday that Tim Drevno sees him as being similar to Coby Fleener at the same age, except a better blocker. That’s saying something, considering Gentry is still a terrible blocker. Regardless, Michigan needs offensive playmakers, and Gentry can get separation from linebackers and safeties.

Hit the jump for more awards from Saturday’s win.

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25Jul 2017
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2017 Season Countdown: #38 Eddie McDoom

Eddie McDoom (image via The Michigan Daily)

Name: Eddie McDoom
Height: 6’0″
Weight: 180 lbs.
High school: Winter Garden (FL) West Orange
Position: Wide receiver
Class: Sophomore
Jersey number: #13
Last year: I ranked McDoom #60 and said he would be a backup receiver. He caught 5 passes for 59 yards and ran 16 times for 160 yards.
TTB Rating: 89

McDoom entered 2016 with some uncertainty surround his utilization. Was he a slot receiver? Was he an outside guy? Was he big enough? Could he return kicks or punts? Yes, no, I guess, I guess not. Michigan tricked everyone by turning a bunch of Jehu Chesson jet sweeps into Eddie McDoom jet sweeps, and the only thing missing was, sadly, a reverse from one to the other. Alas, we had to settle for McDoom averaging over 10 yards per touch, and the jet sweeps opened up some things in the run game. He had 33- and 20-yard rushes against Michigan State, but his usefulness waned late in the season when he had just 3 carries for 10 yards and zero catches over the final four games. Michigan’s coaching staff did not seem to trust his involvement in the passing game, and it showed.

The buzz about McDoom has been somewhat reserved, and I don’t think he’s taken the steps forward that perhaps I expected in the 2016-2017 off-season. With Michigan losing two starters on the outside, that should free up some room for some playing time. He played some outside receiver in the spring, and he also has the ability to play in the slot. The only catch he made in the spring game was a 31-yarder on a fade route over the head of freshman Benjamin St-Juste. He did hurt his ankle on that play, but he is expected to be full go for fall practices. I think McDoom can continue his jet sweep duty, and I think he will expand on those 5 catches from last season. I do believe he’s the most talented “slot receiver” on the roster overall, but I’m not expecting a step forward to stardom just yet. Maybe he can build on his rapport with Wilton Speight for next year.

Prediction: Backup wide receiver; 12 catches, 150 yards, 1 TD

27Dec 2016
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Orange Bowl Preview: Michigan Receivers vs. Florida State Secondary

Tarvarus McFadden (image via Warchant)

MICHIGAN

Starters: Fifth year senior Amara Darboh (52 catches, 826 yards, 7 TDs) has been more productive this year than any Michigan receiver since Jeremy Gallon in 2013. Darboh has had some key drops, but that’s because he’s the go-to guy for quarterback Wilton Speight and gets the ball thrown to him in crunch time. Otherwise, he has made some highlight-reel catches and turned in some big plays this year. Michigan likes to use him as both a possession guy and a downfield threat, although he’s not a huge weapon in the deep passing game. Classmate Jehu Chesson (31 catches, 469 yards, 2 TDs) has seen his production fall off dramatically from the second half of the 2015 season, and he just doesn’t look like the same player after a knee injury against Florida in last year’s bowl game. Senior tight end Jake Butt (43 catches, 518 yards, 4 TDs) stands 6’6″, 250 lbs. and won the Mackey Award for the country’s best tight end. He’s not a great blocker, but he’s a very good route runner with sure hands.

Key backups: Michigan will be without the legally challenged Grant Perry (13 catches, 183 yards, 1 TD) due to legal troubles, and he’s the only other wideout who has been regularly targeted this season. The next most productive guy is 6’0″, 180 lb. freshman Eddie McDoom (5 catches, 59 yards; 15 carries, 154 yards), a speedster who has clearly made more of a mark on end arounds and reverses than in the passing game. Fellow freshman Kekoa Crawford (4 catches, 47 yards, 1 TD) and redshirt sophomore Drake Harris (2 catches, 11 yards) may also see some additional time. The backup tight ends haven’t factored into the passing game much: five tight ends have caught either 1 or 2 passes. We should see a lot of 6’6″, 276 lb. redshirt freshman Tyrone Wheatley, Jr. and 6’3″, 287 lb. freshman Devin Asiasi in mostly blocking roles.

Hit the jump for the rundown of Florida State’s defensive backfield.

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