Phil Steele’s 2015 Pre-season All-Big Ten team

Tag: Phil Steele

4Jun 2015
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Phil Steele’s 2015 Pre-season All-Big Ten team

Is Joe Bolden really Michigan’s best player?

Phil Steele released his pre-season All-Big Ten teams (LINK). Since these are almost all potential opponents this season, instead I’ll highlight guys whom Michigan recruited out of high school. Ohio State leads the way with 15 players on the four teams. Michigan State is second with 13. Rather than listing all of the teams ahead of Michigan, I’ll just say that Michigan’s six players on the list are only ahead of Illinois, Northwestern, and Purdue.

Corey Clement – RB – Wisconsin
Leonte Carroo – WR – Rutgers
Taylor Decker – OT – Ohio State
Joey Bosa – DE – Ohio State
Anthony Zettel – DE – Penn State
Adolphus Washington – DT – Ohio State
Vince Biegel – LB – Wisconsin

Nick Vannett – TE – Ohio State
Dan Voltz – C – Wisconsin
Darius Hamilton – DE – Rutgers
Ed Davis – LB – Michigan State
Joe Bolden – LB – Michigan
Mike Caputo – DB – Wisconsin

Robert Kugler – C – Purdue*
Kyle Kalis – OL – Michigan
Chris Muller – OL – Rutgers
Vincent Valentine – DT – Rutgers
Desmond Morgan – LB – Michigan
Eli Apple – DB – Ohio State

Amara Darboh – WR – Michigan
Billy Price – C – Ohio State
Malik McDowell – DT – Michigan State
Lawrence Thomas – DT – Michigan State
Yannick Ngakoue – DE – Maryland
David Santos – LB – Nebraska
Jabrill Peppers – DB – Michigan
Blake O’Neill – P – Michigan

*Was not recruited by Michigan, but is the brother of Michigan center Patrick Kugler

2Jun 2015
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Phil Steele’s 2015 Pre-season All-America Team

Taybor Pepper was once committed to Michigan as a preferred
walk-on, but then Michigan State offered him a scholarship.

Phil Steele released his pre-season All-American team (LINK). There are no Michigan players on the list (which was expected) but there are several Big Ten players and Michigan opponents.

Ezekiel Elliott – RB – Ohio State
Joey Bosa – DE – Ohio State
Anthony Zettel – DE – Penn State
Tom Hackett – P – Utah
De’Mornay Pierson-El – PR – Nebraska

Jack Allen – C – Michigan State
Pat Elflein – OG – Ohio State
Isaac Seumalo – OG – Oregon State
Jack Conklin – OT – Michigan State
Taylor Decker – OT – Ohio State
Adolphus Washington – DT – Ohio State
Shilique Calhoun – DE – Michigan State
Brad Craddock – K – Maryland
Taybor Pepper – LS – Michigan State

Leonte Carroo – WR – Rutgers
Darron Lee – LB – Ohio State
Vonn Bell – S – Ohio State
Andy Phillips – K – Utah
Jalin Marshall – PR – Ohio State

Connor Cook – QB – Michigan State
Devontae Booker – RB – Utah
Dan Feeney – OG – Indiana
Peter Mortell – P – Minnesota
Janarion Grant – KR – Rutgers

In case you’re counting, that’s eight Ohio State players and five Spartans.

25May 2012
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Phil Steele’s preseason All-Big Ten Team

The famed Phil Steele released his preseason All-Big Ten list on Wednesday, and since Steele is often pretty accurate with his predictions, I’ll give them a look.  You can click through to see the whole team, but here are Michigan’s representatives on his four-deep list:

Denard Robinson
WR: Roy Roundtree
OT: Taylor Lewan

Fitzgerald Toussaint
LB: Kenny Demens
CB: J.T. Floyd
S: Jordan Kovacs

Patrick Omameh
DE: Craig Roh
PR: Jeremy Gallon

Jeremy Gallon
S: Thomas Gordon

I don’t have many qualms with Steele’s selections, but if we’re talking about pure talent, Fitzgerald Toussaint is superior to Rex Burkhead.  Burkhead is a fine back, but he’s a four-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust running back.  Toussaint has speed, power, and elusiveness.  The only thing holding Toussaint back is the fact that he has to share carries with quarterback Denard Robinson in a “pro style” offense that also distributes the ball to tight ends and receivers.  For Nebraska, the ball is in Burkhead’s hands or those of quarterback Taylor Martinez.  That’s the only reason that the Cornhuskers running back had more rushing yards last season.  In total, Burkhead had almost 100 carries more than Toussaint (284 to 187) but only had 316 more yards (1,357 to 1,041).  If Michigan had given Toussaint the ball 97 more times and he only averaged 3.26 yards a carry, then he could have equaled Burkhead’s output.  On the flip side, if Toussaint had maintained his 5.6 yards per carry for 97 more carries, he would have ended the year with 1,581 yards.

And that’s my case for Fitzgerald Toussaint being awesome.

And I hate to be a Debbie Downer for Michigan fans, but Roy Roundtree hasn’t shown that he can be one of the two best receivers in the conference; he was great as a slot receiver two years ago, but he struggled on the outside last season.  I would also probably take Darqueze Dennard and/or Terry Hawthorne over J.T. Floyd for the second team, but statistically, Floyd isn’t a bad choice.