ANN ARBOR—As a freshman, tight end Devin Funchess wasted no time making his impact in Ann Arbor, calmly and at times brilliantly hauling in highlight reel receiving touchdowns – five in 2012, to be exact.
Now a sophomore and running through fall camp in preparation for the 2013 season, Funchess, now up to 6-foot-5 and 235-pounds, is ready to expand his role even more.
“I’ve put on some pounds, put on good muscle and that’s been working for me when I’ve been blocking with the defensive line and the offense has been getting good movement,” Funchess told GoBlueWolverine. “I think it’s been worked out this off-season.”
Michigan tight ends coach Dan Ferrigno and offensive coordinator Al Borges will be very pleased with the added bulk, no longer needing to worry about subbing Funchess in and out given a run or pass situation. Through seven practices, Funchess even see’s the Wolverines’ defense wondering what play the offense will run, knowing he’ll need to be accounted for.
“I noticed it a little bit,” Funchess said. “When I’m blocking, they don’t know if I’m going to go out (for a route) so they have extra defensive backs in there, but I’m really blocking. It’s an advantage for the offense because the defenses don’t always know what’s going to happen.”
Not sacrificing any of his speed and agility in adding the weight this off-season, Funchess claims he’s actually faster than he was a year ago as a true freshman from the well-known Farmington Hills (Mich.) Harrison football program.
Still looking to improve daily, Funchess continues to work and be critiqued not only by Coach Ferrigno, but also by former Michigan tight end and current graduate assistant, Kevin Koger.
“We just try to take it one step at a time,” Funchess said. “If I make a mistake, we fix it on site so I won’t make it again. It’s just, I think it’s easy to learn from.”
One of the veterans at the position already despite only being on campus in Ann Arbor for a little over a year, Funchess finds it a little comical that he has to speak up a bit, but leaned on the seniors who showed him the way in his first venture.
“It’s different because I’m a young dude but I’m actually like an older dude,” Funchess said. “I think it’s pretty cool that I get to help them with what I learned last year from the older guys we had in Mike and Brandon.”
To watch video of Funchess from media day, press play below.