ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- A little over a year ago Maurice Ways' season ended abruptly when he broke his foot in spring practice.
He would miss the rest of spring practice and was limited throughout the fall as he rehabbed his foot back to playing health.
Now, the fourth-year junior says he’s back to “110” percent health and has felt that way since Michigan's season concluded in January.
“Probably honestly after the season I was really able to like to just slow down and the detailed parts of my body, like my lower body, my foot and things like that,” Ways said. “But I was still 95%, 90% during the season too. But I just feel like 100% right now. Like my biggest thing is my confidence, just getting that back and playing fast and making plays.”
And now Ways, who stands at 6-foot-3, 217-pounds, is back catching balls and moving at his usual pace. The best part, he says, is that his injury is an afterthought when playing.
“I haven’t thought about it at all,” Ways said when he’s out there playing. “I think March 24 a couple weeks ago was the day I broke my foot. We had practice that day. It’s kind of like it happened in a year. It’s been a whole year. So it was kind of special for me being out there practicing that day cause this time last year I wasn’t. So it was a blessing for me.”
While humbled by injury, Ways knows that with the graduation on Jehu Chesson and Amara Darboh, there are plenty of passes to go around. His plan, of course, is to be part of U-M's prime pass catching core.
“I’m getting better everyday that’s my main goal,” Ways said. “I’m taking what coach (Pep) Hamilton and coach (Jim) Harbaugh tell me. I’m taking to coaching in just terms of being a better receiver, route running, things like that. I see progression everyday, so I think it’s been going pretty well for me.”
And we’ll get our first glimpse of Ways this Saturday, when Michigan plays its annual spring game at 1 p.m.