But with the graduation of Graham Glasgow, Cole was asked to move to center this spring. It has been a smooth transition so far.
“I feel real comfortable,” Cole said of playing center. “It was practice 14 (on Tuesday), so I’ve had a lot of hours at it, a lot of meetings, it’s been good."
However, Cole admits his main adjustment to center hasn't been physical at all.
“I think it’s a lot tougher mentally,” Cole said of center. “You got to know a lot more stuff. You got to know the defense more. There is a lot more pressure on you, you got to get up and get you calls out so everyone can make their calls off your calls. I would say mentally it is a lot more challenging.”
Along with Cole, Michigan returns starters Ben Braden (LG), Kyle Kalis (RG) and Erik Magnuson (RT), to give the Wolverines one of the most experienced lines in the country.
“I think going into our third season really all playing together, playing with each other, I think it’s going to be big this year -- it helps a lot,” Cole said of the offensive line’s experience. “Especially going into spring with me moving to center, getting to work with Kalis and Braden helps a lot. It helps with gelling too.”
Sophomore Grant Newsome, with his one career start, has replaced Cole at left tackle. And so far Cole says Newsome's play has been moving along quite nicely
“I know exactly what that’s like,” Cole said of Newsome. “He’s doing a good job of handling himself against the great defensive ends that we have. He’s doing well. He’s very strong. He’s a very lengthy dude, which is good for that position. He’s holding his own there.”
And the more they play as unit, the better they’ll get.
“I think as we build with this offense and build with the offensive line, its just get better and better as you go on,” Cole said.
In the meantime, Cole says his plan is to keep learning his new position this off-season.
“I just need to stay in the weight room and get stronger and focus on watching some film,” Cole said. “All this time I have been watching film looking ta tackle stuff, now I’m at center. Just learning more at center at about the position."
Michigan plays its annual spring game on Friday at 6 p.m.