2018 Season Countdown: #22 Michael Onwenu

Tag: Michael Onwenu

6Aug 2018
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2018 Season Countdown: #22 Michael Onwenu

Michael Onwenu (image via MLive)

Name: Michael Onwenu
Height: 6’3″
Weight: 350 lbs.
High school: Detroit (MI) Cass Tech
Position: Offensive guard
Class: Junior
Jersey number: #50
Last year: I ranked Onwenu #16 and said he would be the starting right guard (LINK). He started nine games at offensive guard.
TTB Rating: 78

Onwenu seemed like the heir apparent to Kyle Kalis at right guard after the 2016 season. He struggled mightily with his weight as a true freshman, and the hope was that he would be in better shape for 2017. Despite losing weight he still wasn’t in shape. He began the season as the starting right guard, but it was a position he would lose to freshman Cesar Ruiz later in the year. Onwenu got the start at left guard in the Outback Bowl, but that was because a bunch of linemen were injured or got sent home.

This year I guess Onwenu is going to start again, but center/guard Stephen Spanellis has been making a push to steal Onwenu’s spot. It would be a little disappointing to see the highly touted Onwenu get sent to the bench, because it would represent another apparent failure to develop a well regarded offensive lineman. Then again, may the best man win. Onwenu has had three years to get in shape, and one reason he hasn’t played as much as possible is that he still weighs upward of 350 lbs. At some point one would think it should kick in that something needs to change when it comes to diet or conditioning, but if that doesn’t happen, he could get passed permanently. The only senior lineman on the roster is tackle Juwann Bushell-Beatty, and Onwenu isn’t going to bump out to tackle and replace Bushell-Beatty (if JBB even starts). This is almost a now-or-never situation for Onwenu.

Prediction: Starting right guard

14Nov 2017
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Michigan vs. Maryland Awards

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Michael Onwenu. Freshman Cesar Ruiz has been playing in place of an injured Onwenu, and while Ruiz has done okay, I think Onwenu has reached a point where he’s a solid right guard. Early in the year, he was struggling with his technique and conditioning, but now that he’s worked his way into game shape, he should be capable of playing an entire contest.

Hit the jump for the rest of the awards.

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23Sep 2017
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Michigan 28, Purdue 10

John O’Korn (image via Sporting News)

Hopefully Wilton Speight is okay. It sucks when your starting quarterback gets hurt, especially a high-quality character like Speight. It happened early in the game, and Speight was 2/4 for 10 yards, while also taking 2 sacks. He was crushed on a play that looked like it could have been flagged for targeting, since he was already in the grasp of another defender and got hit forcefully to the head. Jim Harbaugh says it’s a “soft tissue” injury, so that leaves something to the imagination.

Hit the jump for more on Saturday’s win.

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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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