Michigan RB De'Veon Smith is looking to improve his game as he heads into his senior year.

Michigan RB De'Veon Smith is looking to improve his game as he heads into his senior year.

ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- De'Veon Smith heads into this off-season as Michigan's lead back. It’s a role the senior to be has earned. However, he doesn’t take for granted.

In fact, Smith knows he can improve his numbers from his junior campaign, which saw him rush for 753 yards and six touchdowns in U-M’s 10-3 season in Jim Harbaugh’s first season at Michigan.

“I feel like I got the most games under my belt from last year,” Smith said. “But that was last year. I feel I haven’t done that much (in may career). But I can take a compliment. But I know I need to keep working. I had a great spring, but it’ not the one to get me over 2,000 yards and 25 touchdowns. So I’m going to keep working during the summer.”

What does Smith feel he needs to do to take the next step? Well, Smith says there is multiple things he could do better, but mostly just trusting his running back instincts is his number one factor.

“I understand the offense,” he explained. “I see the holes before they are there, I just got to slow it down and understands my reads, really. And that’s probably the biggest thing for me I believe and coach preaches (that) to me. … And running and react to it.”

The biggest positive for Smith is consistency. Why? Well for the first time in his career he will be able to play in the same offense for two straight seasons. Which not only benefits him, but his offensive line that returns four returning starters from last years team.

“This is my first time having the same offense for two years,” Smith said. “I think it’s the same for a couple of the guys on the offensive line. It’s kind of bitter sweet when you already know they entire offense, just going over everything you learned the past season.

“The offense line actually did pretty good this spring, they did a good job. I believe our offensive line is one of the top offensive lines in the nation.”


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