ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Throughout spring camp redshirt sophomore Ian Bunting has been working on his craft to become a better pass catcher, blocker and -- ultimately -- a better tight end.
“I think I’ve gotten a lot better, better at football, better really at the little things,” said Bunting in interview with The Michigan Insider’s Sam Webb.
“Which I needed to get better at this spring. We’ve all been working hard, especially the tight ends, I can speak for the tight ends, we’ve all been working hard to get those little things to tweak and working everyday in practice.”
At 6-foot-7, 252-pounds, Bunting appeared in 10 games in 2015, finishing with five catches for 72 yards. And he’ll be the first to admit he’s come a long way since his 225-pound playing days as a wide receiver in high school, where he first learned to block.
“My senior year of high school I played a little tight end, I liked blocking, it’s fun,” Bunting said. “ I still do. When you’re a wide receiver you don’t get the same experience. When you’re inline with all the lineman, it’s kind of fun to go in a bury (into a player).”
Who has Bunting buried? Well, he wouldn’t give any names, however, he did say he’s improved going up against a few U-M’s top defensive lineman.
“I go up against Taco (Charlton) and Chris (Wormley) everyday,” Bunting said. “They are great defensive lineman. I think because of going up against them everyday it’s gotten me better at blocking. So I have used that as a way to fine tune what I needed to work at.”
Bunting isn’t alone at the tight end position. Along with All-American Jake Butt, U-M’s also boasts two-redshirt freshman Tyrone Wheatley Jr. and Zak Gentry, who both are making huge strides this spring, says Bunting.
“Well they’ve definitely come a long way,” Bunting said of Wheatley Jr. and Gentry. “Everyone kind of experiences it their first year, when you’re a freshman there is definitely a learning curve.”
Adding: “I remember when I was in their position; at first it’s a lot to take in. Just everyday when you get more repetitions, you start to understand it more, you start to get you technique down. I think they’ve come a long way and they’re both great tight ends.”
Michigan plays its spring game on Friday at 6 p.m.