BRADENTON, Fla. -- Heading into his senior season, De’Veon Smith wants what all running backs want – more carries.
As a junior, Smith finished 753 yards on 180 carries and six rushing toucdowns. And after being hobbled with a bad ankle for the second half of his 2015 season, he finally looked healthy again in Michigan's 41-14 Buffalo Wild Wings Citrus Bowl win against Florida.
A game that Smith rush for a season-high 25 carries, to go along with his 109 yards rushing and two rushing touchdowns, which Smith says proved he can withstand a higher workload when healthy moving forward.
“More (carries) the merrier,” Smith said after Tuesday’s practice at IMG Academy. “More the merrier. I wouldn’t mind more carries. Feed me the ball.”
Smith, however, did say he’s a “team” first player, noting he would like to see all of his fellow running backs receive a higher workload.
That being said, Smith admits the win against the Gators was positive, but won’t define him this season.
“I believed it showed not only me, but (that) we could play with an SEC team,” Smith said of U-M’s Citrus Bowl win against the Gators. “I feel like a whole as a team it showed the world we can play against anybody really. When we put our minds to it and not joke around, out our heads into it, we’ll be good.”
Adding: “It felt good having a good game against Florida,” Smith admits. “I mean, I’m happy about it. But it’s a new year, a whole new season. I really don’t think about it.
“Yeah, I go back and look at film and things I could do better. It’s not that much of difference. People might say I had a good game. I had a rough year. I’m really not worried about that now.”
Michigan plays its annual spring game on Friday evening April 1.