2017 Scholarship Count

2017 Scholarship Count

October 4, 2017

Patrick Kugler (#57)

Players are listed in order of remaining eligibility. With 82 scholarships allotted, Michigan is below its scholarship limit and handed out 3 scholarships to walk-ons. As for the 2018 recruiting class, 8 seniors are scheduled to graduate, while Nate Johnson, Drake Harris, and Wilton Speight will be coming off the tally in 2018, so the class should have at least 14 players.


Hit the jump for the breakdown by class.


  • QB Wilton Speight announced he would transfer
  • WR/CB Nate Johnson was dismissed from the team
  • CB Drake Harris left the team after the season started (and then returned), so I do not expect him to be on the roster in 2018
  • CB Keith Washington is transferring
  • DE Corey Malone-Hatcher has taken a medical disqualification
  • RB Drake Johnson will not return for a sixth year
  • DE Shelton Johnson has left the program
  • RB Kingston Davis is transferring
  • TE Devin Asiasi transferred to UCLA

REDSHIRT SENIORS = 7 (Final season 2017)
QB John O’Korn
RB Ty Isaac
FB Khalid Hill
TE Henry Poggi
OL Patrick Kugler
DT Maurice Hurst, Jr.
LB Mike McCray II
QB Garrett Moores
WR Jack Wangler
OL Greg Froelich
DT Garrett Miller
LB Michael Wroblewski
CB Anthony Dalimonte

SENIORS = 1 (Final season 2017)
OL Mason Cole

REDSHIRT JUNIORS = 11 (Final season 2018)
QB Wilton Speight*
WR Drake Harris*
WR Maurice Ways
TE Ian Bunting
OL Juwann Bushell-Beatty
DE Lawrence Marshall
DE Chase Winovich
DT Bryan Mone

LB Noah Furbush
LB Jared Wangler
CB Brandon Watson
RB Joe Hewlett
FB Joe Beneducci
FB Brian Chu
FB Michael Hirsch
FB Nick Volk
WR Austin Brenner
DT Salim Makki
LB Alex Kaminski
CB Matt Mitchell
LS Andrew Robinson

JUNIORS = 4 (Final season 2018)
RB Karan Higdon
WR Grant Perry
OL Grant Newsome
S Tyree Kinnel

REDSHIRT SOPHOMORES = 6 (Final season 2019)
QB Alex Malzone
WR Zach Gentry

TE Tyrone Wheatley, Jr.
OL Jon Runyan, Jr.
OL Nolan Ulizio
DE Reuben Jones
FB Spencer Dickow
WR Jacob West
WR Brendan White
TE Kenneth Ferris
TE Joseph Files
LB Jack Dunaway
LB Dontae Mauricio
LB Jameson Offerdahl
LB Cheyenn Robertson
CB Taylor Krupp
S Jordan Glasgow
S Louis Grodman
LS Bradley Deeg
K James Foug
P Ryan Tice

SOPHOMORES = 18 (Final season 2019)
RB Chris Evans
TE Nick Eubanks

TE Sean McKeon
WR Kekoa Crawford
WR Nate Johnson*
WR Eddie McDoom
OL Ben Bredeson
OL Michael Onwenu
DE Carlo Kemp
DE Joshua Uche

DT Michael Dwumfour
DT Rashan Gary
LB Devin Bush, Jr.
LB Devin Gil

CB Lavert Hill
CB David Long, Jr.
S Khaleke Hudson

S Josh Metellus
RB Tru Wilson
WR Nate Schoenle
DE Carl Myers

REDSHIRT FRESHMEN = 6 (Final season 2020)
QB Brandon Peters
RB Kareem Walker
OL Stephen Spanellis
DE Ron Johnson
LB Elysee Mbem-Bosse
K Quinn Nordin
QB Michael Sessa
WR Jake Martin
WR Simeon Smith
TE Dane Drobocky
TE Conner Edmonds
TE Daniel Jokisch
OL Anthony Kay
OL Greg Robinson
OL Andrew Vastardis
LB Peter Bush
S Tyler Cochran
LS Camaron Cheeseman
P Will Hart

FRESHMEN = 29 (Final season 2020)
QB Dylan McCaffrey
RB O’Maury Samuels
RB Kurt Taylor
FB Ben Mason
WR Tarik Black
WR Nico Collins

WR Brad Hawkins, Jr.
WR Oliver Martin

WR Donovan Peoples-Jones
OL Chuck Filiaga
OL Ja’Raymond Hall
OL Joel Honigford
OL Cesar Ruiz

OL Andrew Stueber
DE Kwity Paye
DE Luiji Vilain
DT James Hudson
DT Deron Irving-Bey

DT Donovan Jeter
DT Phillip Paea
DT Aubrey Solomon
LB Jordan Anthony

LB Joshua Ross
LB Drew Singleton

CB Benjamin St-Juste
CB Ambry Thomas
S Jaylen Kelly-Powell
S J’Marick Woods
P Brad Robbins

QB Tristan Hughes
FB Tyler Plocki
WR Evan Latham
WR Jake McCurry
WR Jack Young
TE Chris Hanlon
TE Carter Selzer
OL Sean Fitzgerald
OL Jess Speight
DE Ryan Veingrad
LB Adam Fakih
LB Adam Shibley
CB Hunter Reynolds
S Jared Davis
S Josh Wilk
S Jack Young
LS Matt Baldeck


  1. Comments: 183
    Joined: 9/3/2015
    suduri xusai
    Dec 18, 2016 at 5:24 PM

    Sypniewski, Kugler, and Dawson shouldn’t get 5th years, imo. Peppers will most likely go, even though I would love to have him back. I guess the staff is looking to let a few more transfer. Should open up 8 more spots…

    • Comments: 1863
      Joined: 1/19/2016
      Dec 18, 2016 at 8:16 PM

      No way we cut both Kugler and Dawson without defined starters… my guess is how they compete in spring will determine their spots

    • Comments: 3844
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Dec 18, 2016 at 9:18 PM

      I haven’t seen Dawson do much worth anything, but Kugler can play a little bit at a key position. I don’t really want to lose him, just in case something happens to Cole. Or maybe Cole is the answer at left tackle again with Newsome being questionable due to his knee injury. Also, whoever the long snapper is will probably get a scholarship, so it might as well be Sypniewski. I don’t see any reason to cut him loose.

      • Comments: 183
        Joined: 9/3/2015
        suduri xusai
        Dec 19, 2016 at 1:18 AM

        Well, we have to let go 8 guys to get to 30 this class, right? Where will the cuts come from?

        • Comments: 3844
          Joined: 7/13/2015
          Dec 19, 2016 at 6:00 AM

          I’m not trying to be cryptic, but if you look at guys who are perennially in the doghouse, that would be a good place to start. And then if you look at guys who are blocked for playing time for the foreseeable future, that’s another good place to look. And like you said, Peppers is probably gone to the NFL.

          • Comments: 13
            Dec 19, 2016 at 6:13 AM

            But you don’t want us to make speculation about names for potential program attrition here… right?

            • Comments: 3844
              Joined: 7/13/2015
              Dec 19, 2016 at 6:17 AM

              You can write about anything you want. I, on the other hand, like to be a little more careful since I’m the author of the blog. So have at it if you want to speculate.

  2. Comments: 13
    Dec 19, 2016 at 9:36 AM

    Then this would be my baseless speculation…

    1. Drake Johnson – NCAA denies waiver for 6th year
    2. Jeremy Clark – NCAA denies waiver for 6th year
    3. Wyatt Shallman – Won’t be offered a fifth year because he hasn’t contributed as much as others over the past four years
    4. David Dawson – Won’t be offered a fifth year because he hasn’t contributed as much as others over the past four years
    5. Jabrill Peppers – Will declare early for the NFL draft
    6. Alex Malzone – Will look to transfer because he has been passed over on the depth chart by younger players and he cannot switch positions like Zach Gentry
    7. Scott Sypniewski – Won’t be offered a fifth year because he’s been on scholarship for four years already and I think JH has other options on the roster that do not require a scholarship
    8. Lawrence Marshall – I think there will be a mutual parting of ways…

    Those eight spots would open up scholarships for Aubrey Solomon, Cesar Ruiz, Jordan Anthony, Nico Collins, Drew Singleton, Deron Irving-Bey, plus one OL, plus one surprise.

    • Comments: 1863
      Joined: 1/19/2016
      Dec 19, 2016 at 11:09 AM

      I think as an early enrollee, Malzone will be close enough to graduating for him to stick it out one more year, competing for that 3d string, maybe backup spot

    • Comments: 1364
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Dec 24, 2016 at 9:38 AM

      This is a reasonable group, with Peppers and Shallman the most likely departures, IMO. I can see us pushing hard for Clark’s 6th year, since his position is one of significant need next year (assuming that a healthy return is a reasonable possibility), but not so much for Johnson.

      Dawson…sheesh..hard to believe we would need a fifth year out of a guy who has done essentially nothing, but when you look at our depth chart at OG for 2017, what else is there? Maybe Onwenu will break out, but we are dangerously thin there.

      It’s not unreasonable to think that one of O’Korn or Malzone will transfer, but if O’Korn leaves, Malzone will likely stay.

      Sypniewski I’d put down as a coin flip right now. Marshall, yeah..he does not seem to have a future here.

  3. Comments: 6285
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Dec 24, 2016 at 11:22 AM

    I would expect multiple grad transfers from both QB and RB positions. Sort of expecting Drake J back to provide depth after that, but it may depend on Harris.

    We need Jeremy Clark back!

    Since I’m commenting on this thread, I will pedantically note that the second sentence is incorrect. Michigan CAN’T go over the scholarship limit, so they won’t. They certainly aren’t currently over a future limit they can’t and won’t go over.

    • Comments: 359
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Dec 24, 2016 at 11:49 AM

      As a regular guy on a board made up of mostly regular guys (redundancy intended), 89>85 and let the conversation begin as how we will get to the 85 limit. Thanks for your participation.

      • Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Dec 26, 2016 at 11:32 AM

        They’ll get there the same way they always get there. Some impossible to predict combination of decommitments, injuries, unrenewed 5th years, grad transfers, standard transfers, and other.

  4. Comments: 400
    Joined: 12/24/2016
    Dec 24, 2016 at 11:53 AM

    all 19 current seniors
    1 – Isaac
    2 – Shallman
    3 – PERRY suspension
    4 – Wangler ”
    5 – S. Johnson ”
    6 – Peppers

    This makes 30 available openings.
    J. Clark may be invited to Spring ball to earn a place IF he’s granted the 6th year.
    Any transfers open up a couple other spots………..

    • Comments: 1863
      Joined: 1/19/2016
      Dec 24, 2016 at 12:12 PM

      The Perry situation sucks. Do they take his scholly if legal procedures are still pending?
      Why would Wangler go? Haven’t heard much on him
      Ditto Shelton Johnson; we need DL depth, and he’ll be in year3…
      And will Clark even be healthy by spring? My guess is if he can play at all in September, keep him. If it’s questionable, expend all resources on developing watson/hill/long/someoneelse

      • Comments: 400
        Joined: 12/24/2016
        Dec 25, 2016 at 8:14 PM

        To your 1st Q:
        Mr. Perry has been formally charged & arraigned on 4 counts; this is no longer a pending matter but a legal procedural reality; the only thing pending is the outcome which I think will play out similar to the following:
        Mr. Perry has been charged with 1 felony primarily due to the apparent injury of a police officer while chasing him.
        He’s also been charged with 2 counts CSC 4th degree; these counts are HIGH Court Misdeamenors; technically misdeamenors – yes; but HIGH Court Misdemeanors, which means the Court looks at them as only slightly below a Felony………and then the underage alcohol comsumption charge.

        Keep in mind this all came about after a 2 month long prosecutorial investigation; tells me they’ve dotted ALL the i’s & j’s & crossed ALL the t’s….
        First the felony charge:
        The prosecutor, my guess is, is more than willing to drop this charge in return for Mr. Perry to pik up the tab on any medical bills that the City of EL may incur relative to the police officers injury(s)……….
        The alcohol charge too is on the table in return that Mr. Perry complete some type of substance abuse program as defined by the court……….

        Which brings us to the 2 count them TWO! 4th degree sexual assault charges:
        This tells me the prosecutor is willing to drop 1 of them but that he/she is FIRM on saddling Mr. Perry with a sexual offense which puts him on the Sexual Offenders Registry plus he’ll get some minimal fine & costs and a year or so probation. He was afterall released on a personal recognizance bond……..

        IF Mr. Perry’s attorney is able to get this prosecutor to drop BOTH these CSC charges in return for a guilty plea of simple assualt – I want that attorney on my staff………..

        Mr. Perry may also be subject to civil litigation by the injured police officer as well as the female victim and/or her parents ( I don’t know how old she is ; She might be 30 or 20 or 16………)

        Let me use a football anology:
        Refs try to Err on the side of player safety when it comes to spearing/targetting calls………

        This prosecutor is trying to do the same but relative to the Public Safety…………..
        Studies have shown that Sexual predators generally begin to manifest their behavior in their late teens often thru inappropriate public voyeuristic, touching, fondling behavior. So this case is a cross road not only for Mr. Perry but also the prosecutor. This prosecutor doesn’t want someone coming back on him 5 years from now IF this behavior escalates; and say “You could have nipped this in the bud but dismissed the charges!!”

        Its a hard tuff call but its one that prosecutors have to make and sleep with. MR. Perry could very likely be put on the sexual offenders registry before it all said and done.

        How does all this relate to Mr Perry’s status on Michigan Football? Is it neccessary to state the obvious?.

      • Comments: 1356
        Joined: 8/13/2015
        Dec 25, 2016 at 8:28 PM

        I doubt seriously that Wagner is going anywhere pre graduation. He’s second generation Michigan and while stupid just to be there, did nothing other than stand there while Perry lost his mind.

        I can’t imagine that he’ll get a fifth year, but Michigan is unlikely to even think about running him ….. beyond the stadium steps.

        • Comments: 359
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Dec 25, 2016 at 9:29 PM

          I don’t disagree necessarily with you Roanman, but (aside from the EL problem) I have wondered where a legacy player fits in the meritocracy hierarchy.

          As the LB and even the OL numbers are bolstered after this class isn’t competition supposed to determine who gets the scholarships going forward?

          • Comments: 1356
            Joined: 8/13/2015
            Jan 03, 2017 at 7:49 AM

            Meritocracy isn’t really the issue here. As a player, young Wangler probably isn’t ever going to get minutes, but I have yet to hear of a Michigan kid getting run over not being good enough. Maybe young Wangler is the first, but I’m highly doubtful. John Wangler is well respected around here, my strongly held opinion is that nobody is even thinking thoughts. There is no way in my estimation that he gets year five, but he graduates in four and the goes to work for dad.

            Aside from being a moron for even getting in a car headed for East Lansing the police report indicates that all he did wrong was be there when Perry ran amok.

            This is my take on how the conversation went, Harbaugh to John Wangler, “John, WTF was that idiot thinking?” Wangler to Harbaugh, “I know, I’m gonna kick his ass!!!!!” Harbaugh to Wangler, “Me too!!!” Wangler to Harbaugh, “Good!!!”

            • Comments: 359
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Jan 03, 2017 at 8:18 AM

              Thanks for getting back. Responding after all these days shows me your interest in the program and in your efforts here.

              ” my strongly held opinion is that nobody is even thinking thoughts. There is no way in my estimation that he gets year five, but he graduates in four and the goes to work for dad.” This is actually the answer I expected.

              I am learning to adjust to the new ways of roster management. If I am a guy on the team that bleeds blue and in direct competition with a legacy player I will play my ass off. Should anyway, but you know where I am coming from.

    • Comments: 1364
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Dec 24, 2016 at 1:37 PM

      Not so sure about Isaac. Yeah, he didn’t have anything like what could be considered a breakout year, but he did reasonably well as a backup, at a position where the 3rd and even 4th guy may matter. Evans looks like the favorite to be the #1 back next year, but after that, who else do we have that you can confidently say will be significantly better than Isaac? On the off chance we bag Harris, that would change things, but right now, I don’t see Isaac as excess baggage.

      • Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Dec 26, 2016 at 11:48 AM

        Why would Ty Isaac stick around to be a backup yet again? In 2015 he ended up behind Derrick Green, who transferred because HE himself was going be a backup. In 2016 he ended clearly behind two younger players: Evans and Higdon. Isaac is a solid back and, for his size, a very good athlete. On a team less talented than Michigan he could be a starter. At Michigan he’s likely a role player even before you start thinking about the ’17 recruiting class.

        I think after being 5th string, 5th string, and 4th string during his 3 eligible seasons at two different schools, he’ll have learned his lessons and will search for a more clear path to playing time.

        On Michigan’s end, while Isaac would offer some veteran depth and would likely get carries at some point, the limited number of snaps he’d play are better allocated to younger backs like Davis and Walker to see what they can offer going forward.

        I think Johnson is more likely to be back because he’s a high character local kid who will be a lifelong program ambassador. Given what happened in 2016 it will be nice to see him in the winged helmet one more time. He can replace Isaac’s production but with a drama-free positive off-field presence. There’s also the chance Michigan “owes him one” after the forklift incident – not that he hasn’t earned his scholarship on the field anyway.

        • Comments: 6285
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Dec 26, 2016 at 12:13 PM

          Same goes for O’Korn. He can probably be a starter somewhere else. If he stays at Michigan he is likely resigning himself to a career other than football. That may be the case but given his physical talent it’s likely he would give it another shot somewhere else.

        • Comments: 1364
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Dec 26, 2016 at 12:48 PM

          Well, I was talking mainly about who WE would want back, whereas you’re also talking about whether THEY would want to return.

          OK, fine…Maybe Isaac would rather be a backup on a prominent team, playing for a prominent coach, than be a starter at someplace with a lower profile. He might very well find a spot at a lower tier program where he could be the #1 guy, and maybe put up a 1000 yard season, but it’s by no means clear that that would help his NFL prospects more than staying put. He has the talent and the skills he has, and fluffing up stats against weaker opposition in a fifth year (assuming he even would) isn’t going to fool NFL scouts, who have seen plenty of his game at two different P5 schools. But if he just wants to play more next year, fine..more power to him.

          I have no doubt that Johnson is more likely to want to come back than we are to need him back. But if I had to pick him or Isaac to slot in as my 3rd or 4th guy next year, I’d take Isaac in a heartbeat. Yeah, I know there are sentimental reasons to bring him back, but you can only expend so many scholarships on sentiment if you want an elite program.

          • Comments: 6285
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Dec 26, 2016 at 11:34 PM

            Johnson is the better RB too.

            • Comments: 1364
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Dec 27, 2016 at 6:53 AM

              If he is, it’s not by a lot, and you have to factor his fragility in there. Talent x probability of full health is what I’d go by in judging who will be more valuable next year.

            • Comments: 6285
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Dec 27, 2016 at 11:13 AM

              Not by a lot, so it comes down to a matter of preference.

              I don’t think durability is a big deal for what is likely the 4th string RB. Reliability and character are more important. Johnson is a guy Michigan has trusted to carry the ball against Ohio State and to tote it 10-15 times in multiple games, including meaningful ones.

              Isaac – not so much. Probably the greatest responsibility he got at Michigan was the Wisconsin game (8car/ 48yd) and that was a game where Higdon and Johnson were unavailable.

              If we were talking about a primary back, the staff might prefer Isaac, but we’re talking about a deep bench backup most likely.

              I have no inside info here, but based on the coaching decisions and production it seems very likely to me that the coaches would choose Johnson over Isaac. And while they could bring back both, the potential 3 RB recruiting class and the 3 freshman from last year’s class tells me it is unlikely. I would not be shocked from transfers from that group either, but that’s I think what it would take to get both grad guys back.

    • Comments: 6285
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Dec 26, 2016 at 12:19 PM

      These all seem possible to likely to me. Clark is very good. If he can be eligible he would be a near lock to start and it would be a huge gain for the 2017 team to get at least one experienced DB back. Would be a great mentor for St Juste too.

  5. Comments: 111
    Joined: 10/14/2015
    Dec 25, 2016 at 11:49 PM

    I think 3 RBs has to go. I don’t know if it is Isaac or Johnson or even Walker. I have always thought that Hoke (and now Harbaugh) recruits too many RBs. Not including the incoming freshman, we have 7 RBs, most of them are the back-ups variety. Don’t get me wrong. I like Johnson, Higdon and Isaac alot but prefer to use their scholarships for OLs instead. Not counting incoming freshmen, I counted 7 RB and only 10 OL. The numbers don’t add up. If it were up to me,

    1. Drake Johnson (regardless of the waiver for 6th year)
    2. Wyatt Shallman
    3. David Dawson
    4. Jabrill Peppers (NFL)
    5. Alex Malzone (Deep down the depth chart)
    6. Ty Isaac or Karan Higdon
    7. Grant Perry (Legal trouble)
    8. Lawrence Marshall

    • Comments: 1364
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Dec 26, 2016 at 10:22 AM

      Well, part of the reason we’re short on the OL is that we lost 4 quality guys from the 2013 class who would otherwise be forming the core of next year’s line. We didn’t really under-recruit there, but it’s hard to make up for that much attrition and also fill other needs.

      As far as RBs, we really don’t over-recruit there. Having only six scholarship RBs makes you very thin, given that some guys are going to end up not being playable, and that injuries can hit that position hard. I agree about Shallman (though he isn’t really a RB, more a guy without a clear position), and agree that keeping Drake for a sixth year is probably not necessary, but after that, I don’t think we can afford to trim any further. It’s a position where you need bodies, and if backup caliber is what you’ve got, then that’s what you’ve got. If you ditched Isaac too, what’s your depth chart if you suffer even one injury next year? And why would you ditch Higdon? 2017 will only be his third year, and he did reasonably well last year. Giving guys who would be taking a 5th scholarship year a thank you and a handshake is one thing, but dumping guys after two years because they’re not stars, unless they have real doghouse problems, is not something you want a reputation for.

      Same with Dawson…he hasn’t done much to impress, but unless one of the freshmen really steps up (and our incoming class is not heavy on pure guards), what’s your depth chart without him?

      As far as Malzone, if O’Korn stays, he’s almost certainly buried, but if O’Korn transfers, then he’s no worse than third, assuming you want to RS McCaffrey, and second if someone gets dinged up.

      • Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Dec 26, 2016 at 11:51 AM

        Attrition has to be accounted for in recruiting. At RB, you expect it to be high. At OL it’s not as severe, but Michigan has been underestimating it for many years. The other factor is that freshman RB can play right away while generally OL require a year or two to be non-emergency contributors.

        In conclusion – we need more OL and RB is an obvious target for excess.

        • Comments: 1364
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Dec 26, 2016 at 12:28 PM

          Well, our problems at both of those positions are as much if not more about player development as they are about attrition. If Kugler and Dawson were coming back as experienced, high quality starters next year (as they were hoped to be when we recruited them), our Oline situation would be looking pretty good, and we wouldn’t be worrying so much about numbers.

          And yes, you have to account for attrition, but losing 4 guys at OL out of 6 in the class of 2013 is still an unusually big hit. We have a big class of OLinemen coming in this year, but we’re still not getting the kind of elite players there that Alabama is getting. We’re recruiting projects, who are undersized to begin with and would take at least 2-3 years to contribute at a championship level even if we were developing offensive linemen adequately (which, so far under Harbaugh, we are not).

          As far RBs being a target for excess, who would you show the door if you were Harbaugh, and what would your projected depth chart at RB be next year?

          • Comments: 6285
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Dec 26, 2016 at 12:46 PM

            Sure – if recruiting hopes come true that changes a lot – as always. I hoped Freddy Canteen could win 4 Heismans.

            You are right that losing 4/6 can be considered high attrition, but Michigan also had these guys on campus before the ’14 OL class was signed. They should have taken a bunch more OL in that class, especially given that Cole ended up starting.

            I don’t agree with you about undersized projects in this class. Ruiz is the most obvious example. Last year Onwenu and Bredeson too.

            We are not recruiting at Alabama level. That part is true.

            • Comments: 1364
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Dec 26, 2016 at 12:59 PM

              Ruiz is about the only Olineman in the 2017 who DOESN’T look like an undersized project, frankly. We’ve got four 3 stars out of six guys, and one of the 4 stars checks in about 280. Alabama has three 5 star OLs in the 2017 class and had two more in 2016. OSU already has two 5 stars in their 2017 class.

              We’ll know next year whether Onwenu and Bredeson are projects or not. If they aren’t, they should be solid starters.

              • Comments: 33
                Dec 26, 2016 at 3:39 PM

                Too early to fret about the OL class. If U-M gets 2 of Filiaga/Becton/Slaton, then that’s 3 guys in the class (including Ruiz) who meet the standard you’re looking for (300 pounders who are 4 stars or better). OSU has 2 such players, Bama 4.

              • Comments: 6285
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Dec 26, 2016 at 11:35 PM

                sounds like star-gazing to me.

          • Comments: 6285
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Dec 26, 2016 at 12:50 PM

            re: RB, I would not bring back any 5th year player. I would not recruit 3 RB in this class, or any class. I would take 1-2 per year and let attrition work itself out so that you have no more than 6 on a roster at a time. Then again, I probably wouldn’t be giving scholarships to fullbacks either.

            That said, given that Harbaugh seems to want to have 8 RBs, I would like to see Drake Johnson back for character, leadership, program-building reasons – not to mention his serviceable role as a speedy backup who can give you some carries and be productive with them.

            • Comments: 1364
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Dec 26, 2016 at 4:22 PM

              Well, sometimes good players get hurt and have to sit out a year, and sometimes guys transfer in and do well after sitting out a year. In both cases, it seems a little silly to say you’re not going to give them a fifth year as a firm policy. It’s also a little silly to say you will not take 3 RBs in a class under any circumstances. It depends on who you can get in a class who’s really good. And our 2017 class will very possibly be 30+ recruits, so taking 3 RBs is not necessarily crazy, if the quality is there. Next year we will probably have space for no more than 1.

              And sometimes attrition takes you a little below your planned staffing level and you can’t recover from it right away, so it’s not necessarily good to be cutting things close all the time. Can you do OK with six scholarship RBs? Sure. But it leaves you with little or no room for surprises. And you also have to take into account how good your success rate is at landing and developing guys who can be championship level contributors at a P5 school. If you’re doing really well in that regard, then you can probably get along with less than 8 RBs as a regular complement. So far, we haven’t been, though OL issues have something to do with that.

              • Comments: 6285
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Dec 26, 2016 at 11:38 PM

                wouldn’t bring back 5th years because i wouldn’t redshirt RBs. 5th year RBs that you can’t easily replace are rare. i would allow for exceptions of course, but it would be very uncommon – as it will be for Michigan anyway.

                6 RBs leaves your room for 2 or 3 ‘surprises’. We’ve never come close to having to use 8, ever.

            • Comments: 111
              Joined: 10/14/2015
              Dec 26, 2016 at 11:40 PM

              I would also love to have Drake Johnson for character leadership etc. But the number crunch won’t cut it. LIke you said, I also don’t think we should recruit 3 RB per class. I also don’t think we should have 8 RBs in the roster. I don’t know the fact but I bet Bama/Wiscy doesn’t have 8 scholarship RBs in their roster. I would prefer having a great OL/good RB than good OL/great RB. With 3 RBs expected to join this class, I think 3RBs will also leave this class through attrition..

              • Comments: 6285
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Dec 27, 2016 at 12:12 AM

                I would bet Smith, Shallman and Isaac depart and are replaced with 2 recruits (not 3 unless you count LB/FB Mason). Johnson was already on scholarship, so that would be status quo.

      • Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Dec 26, 2016 at 12:08 PM

        Michigan didn’t lose 4 quality OL in the ’13 class. The ’13 class was just not very good. One they ran off, seemingly with intent. Another is an accused felon trying to make it back in the MAC. One quit football. One got hurt. The 2 remaining are career backups through 4 years.

        We can blame talent identification or development, but I don’t think we can blame fate for robbing Michigan of ‘quality guys’ when 5/6 recruits couldn’t hack it for reasons on the field or off. Certainly not enough there to form the core of an OL on any power 5 team OLs. We could get guess the Fox would be starter worth I guess, but given what the success stories in the class look like (Dawson and Kugler), it’s a dubious projection.

        • Comments: 1364
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Dec 26, 2016 at 1:05 PM

          Well, I’m not really caring how you define “lost”. Attrition is attrition, regardless of the reasons. And at the time all the fanboys over at Mgoblog were jerking off over that Oline recruiting class, saying how it was the best haul in the country. But we lost three 4 star recruits and a 3 star before they ever did anything, and reasons aside, that’s left us with a huge roster hole.

        • Comments: 6285
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Dec 26, 2016 at 11:40 PM

          people overreact to recruiting every year.

          the roster hole is due to poor talent development and poor roster management. standard attrition or slightly above standard

      • Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Dec 26, 2016 at 12:12 PM

        If you’re going to give scholarships to FBs (as Michigan does) I think it’s hard to argue that 6 RBs is thin. Even if you call two of them unplayable (due to injury or red-shirt) 4 is still plenty to cover any needs you have even before you start considering giving some RB carries to guys like Hill or Houma.

        Higdon seems the leader to replace Smith’s role as a complement to Evans (with Evans getting a bigger share presumably). I would be shocked to see him depart barring a game-changer (like Harris committing).

        • Comments: 1364
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Dec 26, 2016 at 4:32 PM

          Well, FBs and RBs are really not interchangeable in a Harbaugh offense, so you can’t dip into your depth chart at FB if you run low on RBs and expect to do very well. But I tend to agree that bringing in scholarship recruits specifically to play FB is not usually worthwhile. Once in a while you may find a guy who appears very well suited to the position out of high school, but even then, they may not want to play it. Better to find guys in their second or third year buried in the depth chart at other positions that you can convert. There are almost always some around.

          • Comments: 6285
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Dec 26, 2016 at 11:41 PM

            harbaugh used Houma as a RB as well as Peppers.

      • Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Dec 26, 2016 at 12:15 PM

        Malzone seems like he could hang around until his grad transfer year a la Morris. As a local kid he will put more stock in the UM degree than most. Learning under Harbaugh is great preparation, one would think.

    • Comments: 6285
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Dec 26, 2016 at 12:17 PM

      Marshall has talent and he’s been hyped up at times, while other times he’s been in the doghouse. With a backup needed for SDE (especially if Gary plays DT), I think Marshall is potentially in line for a significant role next year. I would not write him off yet.

  6. Comments: 400
    Joined: 12/24/2016
    Dec 26, 2016 at 5:19 PM

    Harbaugh is on record regarding his philosophy relative to fifth years:

    ……..and also some particulars re 2017:

    To summarise in general, IF you want to come back AND the Staff wants you back you will be invited to earn a spot during spring ball. This is Harbaugh’s basic 5th yr philosophy…………

    Relative to running backs; Harbaugh’s philosophy is again clear:
    The Staff want guys that can run a pass route out of the backfield, catch the ball AND pass block and they are recruitng guys that show great potential for all of this.

    RE Isaac; this is a guy who after 4 years is at best an average runner; cannot run a route nor pass block AND everytime he’s handed the ball, the pucker factor on Harbaugh’s sphincter goes directly to 10. When Isaac hits the line of scrimage with the ball in his hands, I don’t think a team of the Budwieser Clydesdales could pull a greased thread out of Harbaugh’s ass…….. no, I don’t expect Ty to be back for a fifth year.

    Also, Jimmy wants to use multiple running backs interchangebly rather than just have ‘The Guy’. He wants all of his backs to be ‘The Guy’ with all of them not fumbling, able to pass block and run a route all of them doing all things. These are the backs he’s recruiting. Then he can rotate them, using them interchangebly and no single guy has to absorb a seasons worth of punishment.
    One of the big knocks by NFL scouts on Saban’s players coming out of Alabama is that they’re so beat up there’s not much left to them by the time they get into the NFL; and NFL careers are short as it is anyway………
    ……..and don’t think this hasn’t been pointed out to high schoolers like Najee Harris.


    • Comments: 1364
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Dec 27, 2016 at 6:43 AM

      Whatever Harbaugh’s ideal team and ideal players look like, he still has to assemble a roster in the real world, using the best players that are actually available to him now. The question is not whether Isaac is a great back or even a particularly good one…he’s not. The question is, if we ditch him, who do we have for next year that’s clearly better?

      If Harbaugh wants better backs than Isaac, then he needs to recruit them. So far, it’s not clear that he has.

      • Comments: 6285
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Dec 27, 2016 at 11:20 AM

        Evans, Higdon, and Johnson are better. Plus you will have 4-5 freshman (redshirt or true) that are likely improving faster than Isaac is, including a 5-star recruit in Kareem Walker. If they add in Harris – where is Isaac going to get snaps from?

        Harbaugh has recruited 2 backs that are demonstrated to be better and younger than Isaac already. The others are freshman or incoming recruits.

        Isaac’s best fit would have been at H-back/FB but that ship has sailed at Michigan.

        • Comments: 1364
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Dec 27, 2016 at 1:27 PM

          Evans looks better, certainly, but Higdon and Isaac had comparable stats last year, so it’s not at all a given that Higdon is “clearly better”, even though he may have more potential for improvement. And at the moment, Johnson isn’t a going concern, and he has to show he can stay healthy. Similarly, looking in from the outside, I wouldn’t factor Walker into things until it’s clear that whatever kept him off the field last year isn’t still an issue, AND that he’ll actually be good if he does get out there. No doubt the coaches have a better perspective, but we’ve seen what uncertain commodities 5 star backs can be.

          As far as the freshmen and redshirts, none of them has “can’t miss” tattooed on their forehead. Maybe Harbaugh will feel confident rolling the dice with younger guys in hopes of a big payoff, rather than Isaac, who is a known, though admittedly limited quantity, but right now, I wouldn’t put Isaac any further down than third in the depth chart.

          • Comments: 6285
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Dec 27, 2016 at 2:11 PM

            Reasonable to assume that by being ahead of an older player in the pecking order Higdon is in fact better. Higdon got carries against OSU while Isaac faded into the background for the second year in a row.

            Ditto goes for Johnson; when healthy he has been ahead of Isaac.

            We can sit here and say that only 2 or 3 returning players are demonstrated to be better than Ty Isaac and ignore the 4 or 5 recruits waiting in line, but you add it up the volume of young talent (unknown as they may be) and the guys ahead of him and the probabilities start hitting an overwhelming level.

            We can sit here and make the same cases for Mo Ways or David Dawson or Shane Morris too because they younger guys passing them over don’t have a strong statistical case in their favor. McCaffrey Peters and Malzone haven’t done anything yet and you never know when Michigan might need a 3rd string veteran to step in for an injury – but that argument is ridiculous and I think you know it.

            • Comments: 1364
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Dec 27, 2016 at 6:39 PM

              No, the only thing that is reasonable to assume is that Higdon, being younger, has more time to improve than Isaac. Whether he actually will, or whether he has reached his ceiling, remains to be seen. He isn’t “clearly better” until he actually shows it on the field.

              And come on…be honest and give the whole story…Higdon got 3 carries for all of 5 yards against Ohio State. Maybe he had a bit better week of practice before that particular game and got all of the meager carries for the third string back, but as far as having more talent, if Isaac had gotten those three carries instead, he could hardly have done much worse. And let’s give things a little more perspective. Against Indiana, Higdon had 4 carries for 2 yards and Isaac had 5 carries for 6 yards, Against Iowa, Isaac had 1 carry for 7 yards and Higdon had 3 carries for -3 yards. Are you really going to argue, based on that, that Higdon is “clearly better”? They were both equally UNimpressive down the stretch, and the coaching staff was not brimming over with confidence in either of them, understandably.

              And no, you really can’t make the same cases for Mo Ways or David Dawson or Shane Morris. Isaac was more productive last year than any of them have been, by far (not that that’s saying much). The only reason even Morris has any stats to speak of is because of injuries. And using the fact that a guy who isn’t even on campus yet hasn’t done anything is what’s ridiculous.

              • Comments: 6285
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Dec 27, 2016 at 7:22 PM

                Higdon had a better YPC on the season for what (little) that is worth. There isn’t a cogent case Isaac over Higdon. The coaches preferred Higdon, trusted him in meaningful situations, and give him more carries because of it.

                Both got similar carries on the year (though Higdon missed the Wisconsin game with an injury probably) so it’s not like one guy was way above the other. But it’s also pretty clear who was above who in the pecking order by season’s end. The coaches get to see practice, not just games.

                The pecking order could change next year of course, but Higdon’s 2 years younger, which would indicate that it’s not likely.


                Comparing 4th string RB production to 4th string WR production is apples and oranges and you know it.

                With both senior WRs graduating Michigan only returns at most 3 more productive than Ways (Perry, McDoom, and Crawford). The same arguments you made for Isaac apply for Ways too.

                “And using the fact that a guy who isn’t even on campus yet hasn’t done anything is what’s ridiculous.”

                Ah yes – now we’ve come full circle – to the point I was making about young RBs who will take Isaac’s place. I changed Isaac to Ways and here is your own argument against yourself:

                “As far as the freshmen and redshirts, none of them has “can’t miss” tattooed on their forehead. Maybe Harbaugh will feel confident rolling the dice with younger guys in hopes of a big payoff, rather than Ways, who is a known, though admittedly limited quantity, but right now, I wouldn’t put Ways any further down than third in the depth chart.”

          • Comments: 6285
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Dec 27, 2016 at 2:19 PM

            Isaac should be considered 4th on the depth chart only if you are willing to ignore freshman.

            There is no such thing as can’t miss, but if you add 5 highly ranked recruits the probability that none of them is a quality player gets very small. Isaac is a replacement-level player for Michigan and Michigan has multiple replacements are already lined up. 100% they are better – no. But very likely that at least one is.

            Harbaugh knows what he has in Walker and Davis, so it’s not accurate to call it roll of the dice. He gets more info than we do.

            If he brings Isaac back, it’s an indictment of the RS freshman and I would not expect them to be around that much longer TBH.

            • Comments: 1364
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Dec 27, 2016 at 6:52 PM

              If we actually had 5 “highly ranked recruits” waiting in the wings at RB, you might have a point, but we don’t. Taylor certainly isn’t one, and neither is Davis. Samuels is a low 4 star with an unimpressive offer list. Walker’s status is still very much up in the air. Of our RB recruits the last two years, the only one who looks better is Evans, who I have already put above Isaac, when I put Isaac third. The rest are no sure bet to do anything.

              And yes..Harbaugh knows what he has in Davis. And based on that, Davis played in two games and got two carries this season, while Isaac played in 12 and got 74 carries. Does Harbaugh “know” (as opposed to hope) that Davis will be better than Isaac next year based on that? I seriously doubt it.

              • Comments: 6285
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Dec 27, 2016 at 7:31 PM

                Which part of Walkers “status” is up in the air?

                Again, you are star-gazing, but we do have Walker and Samuels who were both highly rated and waiting in the wings.

                If Harbaugh does not think Davis can be better than Isaac he should encourage him to look elsewhere (position or team). Isaac is a replacement level back. They can grab a 2-star guy from a local HS to do what he does. I say that because they already did.

                The only issue here is a hangup about HS recruiting rankings from 4 years ago. How many times do 3 star recruits have to outplay the 5-star recruit for it to be driven home that the guy is not that good? But lets focus on the fact that Kurt Taylor is only a 3-star….

  7. Comments: 1356
    Joined: 8/13/2015
    Jan 23, 2017 at 2:28 PM

    Jabrill is gone. Is he not?

    • Comments: 3844
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Jan 23, 2017 at 2:46 PM

      Yeah, I took him out of the total but I forgot to remove his name. Oops. Thanks.

  8. Comments: 1356
    Joined: 8/13/2015
    Feb 05, 2017 at 5:45 PM

    Asiasi ….. sigh!

  9. Comments: 2
    Joined: 1/16/2017
    Feb 06, 2017 at 10:49 AM

    Looks like a small recruiting class next year. Do you think realistically it will be around 15 or so?

  10. Comments: 1364
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Mar 12, 2017 at 4:16 PM

    Asiasi is an unfortunate loss. We’re left with only one blockingTE on the roster, and no one with Asiasi’s promise. Harbaugh came in with a reputation for favoring a power game, heavy on the use of TEs and FB/H-back types, but that does not seem to be the way that the future roster is trending.

    • Comments: 3844
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Mar 13, 2017 at 7:41 AM

      I don’t know if I really agree that we only have one blocking TE on the roster. Wheatley is a good blocker, but so is McKeon.

    • Comments: 359
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Mar 13, 2017 at 8:54 AM

      I am a fan of the power game using TE and FB/H backs. If the roster is in fact trending toward more flexability, I am in favor of that also. Attract the best available recruits and coach them up, a sign of an adaptable staff.

  11. Comments: 1356
    Joined: 8/13/2015
    Sep 21, 2017 at 8:31 AM

    I go through this roster and am having no trouble finding 16-18 spots for incoming freshmen. I can get to 20 with only minor pangs.

  12. Comments: 1863
    Joined: 1/19/2016
    Sep 21, 2017 at 10:17 AM

    I think that’s Elliot Mealer, not Kugler in your pic

  13. Comments: 36
    Joined: 11/17/2015
    Sep 21, 2017 at 3:51 PM


    Some questions: why are some players names blue and others black?

    Under redshirt sr you have 13 guys listed and under senior one guy listed. That’s 14 people in their last year of eligibility but you say the 2018 recruiting class should have at least 12 signees??

    • Comments: 10
      Joined: 8/15/2015
      Sep 21, 2017 at 4:04 PM

      Blue are scholarship players and black are players who are walk-ons. Three of the names in black got one-year scholarships this year, but they’re still in black.

  14. Comments: 6285
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Oct 04, 2017 at 12:45 PM

    I continue to argue this is a misapplication of stats.

    • Comments: 3844
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Oct 04, 2017 at 1:00 PM

      I continue to not care.

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