Michigan 34, Maryland 27

Tag: Mike Sainristil


25Sep 2022
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Michigan 34, Maryland 27

Blake Corum (image via CBS Sports)

That was closer than it should have been. Maryland has scared me for years, because they’ve had offensive playmakers. This goes back to the days of NFL veteran receiver D.J. Moore, but also a variety of running backs like Ty Johnson and Anthony McFarland, Jr. Now the Terps have a stable of good receivers and a couple solid running backs in speedster Roman Hemby and 235 lb. Antwain Littleton II, who I learned during the game had been a 295 lb. recruit. But the defense is catching up to the offense with size and speed in the secondary. They’re turning into a formidable opponent.

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1Apr 2022
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What to Watch in the Spring Game

Will Johnson

The spring game will be shown on the Big Ten Network on Saturday, April 2, at 12:00 p.m.

Here are a few things I’ll be curious to watch:

WHO TAKES OVER FOR HASSAN HASKINS?
Michigan needs to replace its leading rusher and toughest back in Hassan Haskins, a 6’1″, 220-pounder who is off to the NFL after rushing for 1,327 yards and 20 touchdowns in 2021. The Wolverines have two very talented running backs left, Blake Corum and Donovan Edwards, but neither one has proven to be a bruiser or short yardage back. They have home run speed but were listed at 200 and 202 pounds, respectively, last season. Redshirt freshman Tavierre Dunlap (6’0″, 222) might be able to step into the role as a big back, but does he have the instincts and power that Haskins showed? Michigan doesn’t need a leading rusher – that will be Corum or Edwards – but they need someone who can pound the ball inside.

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19Feb 2022
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3 Position Changes to Consider

Mike Sainristil (image via MLive)

With spring practice starting next week, I think it’s time to look at what position changes might occur to benefit the team. With a lot of pieces remaining the same on offense and a similar scheme on defense, we generally know what type of systems we’ll see on each side. It’s more of a question about which players might slide around a little bit to fill some holes.

Mike Barrett (RS Sr.): OLB —> ILB
Barrett is a former starting Viper in 2020 under former defensive coordinator Don Brown, but that spot was largely eliminated early in 2021 when Michigan played Daxton Hill at the slot corner position. Barrett didn’t play much early in 2021 until defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald was forced to make some adjustments. He started just one game last year and made 20 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, 1 sack, and 1 pass breakup on the year. Now with middle linebacker Josh Ross headed to the NFL, Michigan loses a leader in the middle but returns a freshman All-American in Junior Colson at the other inside linebacker spot. While Nikhai Hill-Green also returns, I think Barrett and Colson are the two most productive linebackers; Hill-Green played okay but his youth showed with some missed reads and false steps. Plus if Barrett is going to have a minuscule role, I’m not sure he can be convinced to stick around for a fifth year. I think Barrett is enough of a well rounded athlete that he’s worth keeping around, and his speed and athleticism could be a plus if the defensive linemen and the scheme can keep him clean.

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12Aug 2021
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2021 Season Countdown: #26 Mike Sainristil

Mike Sainristil

Name: Mike Sainristil
Height:
5’10”
Weight:
185 lbs.
High school:
Everett (MA) Everett
Position:
Wide receiver
Class:
Junior
Jersey number:
#19
Last year:
I ranked Sainristil #26 and said he would be a backup wide receiver (LINK). He started three games and made 7 catches for 82 yards and 2 touchdowns.
TTB Rating:
84

Sainristil has earned bits and pieces of practice buzz – mixed with some tantalizing on-field play – for the past two seasons. So far that has amounted to just 15 total catches, albeit including 3 touchdowns. Those three scores came on an RPO catch-and-run in 2019, a leaping 23-yard touchdown from Cade McNamara against Wisconsin last season, and a screen catch-and-run against Rutgers. Sainristil has also had some frustrating drops.

In a recent interview, offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach Josh Gattis lamented the fact that Nico Collins’s opt-out in 2020 forced Michigan to move Sainristil out of the slot to the “X” receiver position. The implication was that Sainristil is back in the slot for 2021. With Giles Jackson (Washington) having transferred, Michigan is searching for someone who can make big plays in the slot. I’m not yet convinced that Sainristil can be that guy, but off-season hype has him taking a step forward this season.

Prediction: Starting slot receiver; 25 catches, 330 yards, 3 touchdowns

22Aug 2020
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2020 Season Countdown: #26 Mike Sainristil

Mike Sainristil (image via MLive)

Name: Mike Sainristil
Height: 
5’10”
Weight: 
183 lbs.
High school: 
Everett (MA) Everett
Position: 
Wide receiver
Class: 
Sophomore
Jersey number: 
#19
Last year: 
I ranked Sainristil #20 and said he would be a starting receiver with 30 catches for 480 yards and 5 touchdowns (LINK). He caught 8 passes for 145 yards and 1 touchdown while starting one game.
TTB Rating:
 84

Sainristil, like Donovan Jeter, was significantly overrated by me last year. Spring chatter was positive, and Jim Harbaugh actually named him the starting slot receiver after the spring. I thought that would carry over into the fall, but that turned out not to be the case. He played quite a bit but was not targeted regularly. Tarik Black played more than Sainristil (side opinion: Black was a slacker and should have played less), got his 25 catches, and then dipped out of town, anyway. Sainristil’s catch and run against Notre Dame was more impressive than anything Black did in 2019, though it did come late in a blowout win over Notre Dame:

Sainristil figures to be heavily involved in 2020, but exactly how much is still up in the air. Fellow slot guy Giles Jackson seems to be more explosive, and the coaches seem to have slightly higher hopes for Jackson. The opportunities for Sainristil may increase if Nico Collins does indeed skip his senior season as expected, but for this exercise, I’m projecting Sainristil to be a backup behind Collins, Jackson, and Ronnie Bell.

Prediction: Backup wide receiver