Orange Bowl Preview: Michigan Receivers vs. Florida State Secondary

Tag: Devin Asiasi

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

Tarvarus McFadden (image via Warchant)


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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30Jul 2016
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2016 Season Countdown: #43 Devin Asiasi

Devin Asiasi 608x

Name: Devin Asiasi
Height: 6’4″
Weight: 265 lbs.
High school: Concord (CA) De La Salle
Position: Tight end
Class: Freshman
Jersey number: N/A
Last year: Asiasi was a senior in high school (LINK). He made 17 catches for 311 yards and 5 touchdowns on offense; he also made 49 tackles, 11 tackles for loss, 4 sacks, and 5 breakups.
Final TTB Rating: 92

Asiasi was kind of a unicorn in the 2016 class. A Californian who didn’t want to go far from home, he was suddenly very interested in Michigan toward the end of the recruiting cycle. It makes sense that a good tight end wanted to play for Jim Harbaugh, but the Wolverines had to fend off Alabama, UCLA, and Washington, among others. It came down to the last minute with him choosing Michigan on February 3. Despite playing his senior yearat 265 lbs. with a little bit of bad weight, he danced around opponents at times and showed some light feet on his way to averaging almost 18 yards/catch. He ended up playing in the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, where he caught a touchdown pass.

I like Asiasi a lot, and I think he’s the type of guy who can make an immediate impact. Like Kekoa Crawford in yesterday’s post (LINK), I think blocking ability might push him a little bit ahead of some other guys. Add in some quality receiving skills, and I think Asiasi gets some playing time this year behind Jake Butt at the Y position. Michigan has a lot of tight ends, but Asiasi probably has the highest upside and the best combination of size, blocking ability, and receiving ability. He can play on the line, or he can be split out into the slot to outmuscle safeties or outrun linebackers. Last year with Jake Butt being the receiving tight end and A.J. Williams mostly blocking, it was pretty easy to game plan to stop Butt, even though he still had pretty good production. However, the staff has some new doors opening now, because if you concentrate on stopping Butt on one end of the line, there goes Asiasi or Tyrone Wheatley, Jr. or Ian Bunting popping free in the middle of the field. Wheeeeeeee!

Prediction: Backup tight end

5Feb 2016
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2016 Recruiting Awards

David Long 607x

David Long, Jr. is perhaps Michigan’s fastest 2016 recruit

Every year I post my recruiting awards to look back on in future years. You can look back on past years here (LINK) to find the hits and misses.

Best Overall Recruit: DT Rashan Gary
There’s no real suspense this year. Gary is the consensus #1 player in the country, and I gave him a TTB Rating of 100. He is awesome at the football.

Best Offensive Recruit: TE Devin Asiasi
I think the combination of Asiasi’s athleticism and Jim Harbaugh’s propensity for developing tight ends will do great things for Asiasi’s profile.

Best Defensive Recruit: DT Rashan Gary
See above.

Hit the jump for the rest of the awards.

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3Feb 2016
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Devin Asiasi, Wolverine

Devin Asiasi 608x

Devin Asiasi

Concord (CA) De La Salle tight end Devin Asiasi committed to Michigan on National Signing Day. He chose the Wolverines over offers from Alabama, Auburn, Notre Dame, UCLA, and Washington, among others.

Asiasi is listed at 6’5″, 275 lbs. As a senior in 2015, he caught 17 passes for 311 yards and 5 touchdowns; defensively, he made 49 tackles, 11 tackles for loss, and 4 sacks. As a junior in 2014, he caught 16 passes for 264 yards and 2 touchdowns; he also made 33 tackles, 6 tackles for loss, and 5 sacks as a defensive end. Capping his senior year as a U.S. Army All-American, he caught a touchdown pass to help the West team win.

ESPN: 4-star, 85 grade, #3 TE, #44 overall
Rivals: 4-star, #2 TE, #46 overall
Scout: 4-star, #4 TE, #67 overall
247 Sports: 4-star, 92 grade, #8 TE, #218 overall

Hit the jump for more on Asiasi’s commitment.

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26Jan 2016
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If I Had My Druthers . . . 2016 Tight Ends

Devin Asiasi

Devin Asiasi (image via Maxpreps)

As I like to do on occasion, I took a look at the remaining tight end targets on the board for Michigan and created my pecking order. These are my opinions of which players I would rank highest for Michigan’s needs. I specifically avoid referring to recruiting rankings for guidance, although as an avid follower of recruiting, I do have a general idea of the players’ general star ratings. I posted my list for receivers on Sunday (LINK).

1. Devin Asiasi – TE – Concord (CA) De La Salle:
Asiasi, at 6’5″ and 275 lbs., looks like a slightly taller version of former Arizona and NFL tight end Brandon Manumaleuna. He fancies himself as a skill player, and it’s tough to argue. De La Salle lines him up out wide or in the slot sometimes, and they count on him to make plays in space. He shows soft hands and some delightful agility. He doesn’t have blazing speed, but he is an effective and pretty strong runner after the catch. His blocking skills are also impressive at times; he bends well and looks for contact. He could probably afford to lose some bad weight, but he can contribute early while he reshapes his body.

Hit the jump for the rest of the list.

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