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Florida Gators’ opponent preview: Michigan Wolverines

Florida faces the Wolverines to close the season on Friday.

QUARTERBACK

Quarterback Jake Rudock has been steady for the Michigan offense. He has completed 64 percent (229-358) of his passes while throwing for 2,739 yards, 17 touchdowns and nine interceptions. His 2,739 passing yards already puts him fifth in Michigan history for passing yards in one season. If he throws for 222 yards against Florida, Rudock would move into second place for passing yards in a season.

Backup quarterback Wilton Speight has seen limited action this year, completing 36 percent of his passes (9-25) for 73 yards, one touchdown and one interception.

RUNNING BACK

De’Veon Smith is the bellcow for the Michigan running game. He has 155 carries on the season, 107 more than backup running back Drake Johnson. Smith has 644 rushing yards for 4.2 yards per carry and six rushing touchdowns. He also has 18 receptions for 159 yards and one touchdown through the air.

Johnson has 48 carries for 213 yards and three touchdowns.

WIDE RECEIVER

Amara Darboh has 56 receptions for 703 yards and five touchdowns through the air. With 17 starts over the last two years, Darboh is an experienced receiver who will play his last game at Michigan on Friday.

Jehu Chesson is another experienced receiver on the Michigan roster. He had 45 catches for 646 yards and eight touchdowns through the air. His teammates voted him the Bo Schembechler Most Valuable Player of the 2015 team. He was voted All-Big Ten first team by the league’s coaches.

Jabrill Peppers is also involved with the Michigan offense, but his availability Friday seems in question because of an injury. He has 18 rush attempts and eight receptions on the year.

TIGHT END

Jake Butt is a difference maker for the Michigan offense. He’s second on the team with 48 receptions, adding 620 yards and three touchdowns. He was the Big Ten’s Tight End of the Year and can set the school record for receptions by a tight end in one season with six catches against Florida.

OFFENSIVE LINE

Sophomore left tackle Mason Cole has started every game this season. He’s a Florida native from Tarpson Springs, Fla. Left guard Ben Braden is a returning starter that is an important part of the line.

Center Graham Glasgow was named Michigan’s top offensive lineman. He has 41 career appearances with 36 starts. Right guard Kyle Kalis is an All-Big Ten third team member He has 28 starts at right guard in his career. Right tackle Erik Magnuson has 24 career starts and was voted to the All-Big Ten third team. 

The Wolverines have had the same starting offensive linemen for every game this season. The unit combines for 136 career starts and all five players have at least 20 starts.

 

DEFENSIVE LINE

Defensive end Willie Henry has 20 career starts and has at least one sack in five of the last nine games. Nose tackle Maurice Hurst has three starts this season but has at least one tackle for a loss in seven of the last 10 games.

Defensive tackle Chris Wormley leads the team with 12 tackles for a loss and is tied for second with 5.5 sacks. BUCK Royce Jenkins-Stone has five tackles for a loss and two sacks this year.

LINEBACKER

Inside linebackers Joe Bolden and Desmond Morgan are tackling machines for the Wolverines. Bolden has 76 tackles, the most on the team, to go with six tackles for a loss. Morgan was named Michigan’s top linebacker and is second on the team with 67 tackles. He has at least four tackles in 35 of his 38 career games.

Outside linebacker James Ross has 34 tackles and 5.5 tackles for a loss this year.

CORNERBACK

Jourdan Lewis is a first-team All-American this season and was a semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award. He’s third in the nation with 1.7 pass breakups per game and set a Michigan record with 21 pass breakups this season.

Opposite of Lewis, cornerback Channing Stribling has 17 tackles with three pass breakups and one interception.

SAFETY

Jabrill Peppers was named a second team All-American. He has 45 tackles, 5.5 tackles for a loss and 10 pass breakups to go with his offensive impact. He also serves as the kick and punt returners.

Jarrod Wilson is a two-year starter at safety and has 59 tackles this season with one interception and four pass breakups.

SPECIAL TEAMS

Kicker Kenny Allen is 16-20 on field goals and has made all 41 extra points this year. He also handles some punting duties with Blake O’Neill.


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