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Greg Frey, Tim Drevno bestow high praise to Mason Cole

Michigan offensive line coaches Greg Frey and Tim Drevno bestow plenty of praise to offensive lineman Mason Cole.

Interviews by Sam Webb

Story by Josh henschke

If you're looking for a sure thing on the offensive line, Mason Cole is that player for Michigan.

A mainstay on the offensive line since his freshman year, Cole will be asked to do a lot for the Wolverines this spring and fall. One day he could be the starting center, the next he could very well be bumped out to tackle. Despite the uncertainty of where he might play, Cole has never once complained.

Offensive line coach Greg Frey has only been with the program for a few months, however he might in the most unique position out of all the offensive staff. Despite offensive coordinator Tim Drevno spending two seasons with Cole, Frey just might know him better than anyone in the program does. Frey gushed over what Cole brings to the program, bestowing a huge honor on him.

“First off, I’m biased because were both from the same county, Pinellas County," Frey said. "Secondly, I think I was his first offer, but he turned me down (laughter). His high school coach is a great friend of mine at East Lake High School down there and I’m from Clearwater. Always want to see him do great things, but why I say that is because I’ve watched him more, besides the guys I’ve coached, I’ve watched him the most of anybody. Because of where he is from and because of the respect that I have for his program from his high school, his family, just all those people. I’m very familiar with him looking at him. He brings a nice mentality. We were sitting at lunch today and it was the Coach Harbaugh’s, dad and son, myself and Mason. We are sitting there and just talking and they said, where do you want to play and he said, wherever helps us win. Center, tackle, whatever helps us win, I’ll play. To hear that is refreshing, especially in today’s day and age where everybody gets these five stars. It is all about individual glory, to hear someone say, hey whatever helps us. I just want to have a great senior year, I want to chase my dreams and I want to play good ball. That’s the impression you have of Mason and he brings that to you. When you think of great players, think of

"When you think of great players, think of legacy of Coach Schembechler, The Team, The Team, The Team, that’s what I think of, I think of a guy like Mason Cole. I think of a guy if hey, you put him at right tackle, he’s going to give you everything he has. Put him at center, tight end, fullback, whatever it is, I’m going to try as hard as I can to help us win. With that as being your cornerstone to senior leadership that’s a great thing.”

As of right now, it appears that Cole will be the full-time starter. However, freak injuries or over-performing true freshman could always change those plans. However, Drevno sees plenty of opportunities to seize what he has in the offensive line room and run with it.

That all starts with Mason Cole.

“Mason Cole is a very, very talented football player," Drevno said. "Like I’ve said from day one, great football awareness, team guy. Our job is to put the best five guys out there and you like him at the center spot, because I think that is a guy that is the key to your offensive line. I really believe that an offense, a football team is built down the middle with your center, your quarterback, your fullback, your halfback, your nose tackle, middle linebacker, your free safety. He is a very, very talented person and as we put this together, I foresee him being the center. Things could change as we get the new people coming in and then the people that are here now. It is an excited time. There is a lot of clay to be molded. It is fun because there is a lot of willingness in the room just with the guys as they look at you. Their eagerness to learn. They know the level of football and expectation of Michigan and productivity that has to happen. It is a fun time. It is neat when you have new blood. It gives you energy as a coach. It gets you to think, boy I’ve got to reteach this and I might have to teach it a way that they have to understand it and you become more creative and you really build a strong brotherhood as you are relying on one another.”

Stay tuned to The Michigan Insider for word on the impressive development of some of the young offensive linemen, Cesar Ruiz's impact on the center competition, and more. In the meantime, to hear Drevno and Frey's breakdown of Mason Cole for yourself, press play below.

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