Brice Marich, The Michigan Insider

Michigan Spring Game 2017: OL/RB/TE Report

News and notes from the performances of Michigan's offensive line, running backs and tight ends during the spring game.

Editor's Note: Stats were stopped being recorded at halftime.

Michigan participated in its annual spring game on Saturday with Team Maize winning 31-29 over Team Blue.

While not much can be gleaned from a glorified scrimmage in terms of what it means for longterm success for the Wolverines, there were some items of note to be taken away from the game. Especially from the offensive line, running backs and tight ends.

The Michigan Insider breaks down what it learned from the three position groups.

Offensive Line Report

While neither offensive line unit was overly impressive on Saturday, it was clear who the better out of the two were. The first unit of (from left to right) Mason Cole, Ben Bredeson, Pat Kugler, Mike Onwenu and Jon Runyan Jr. on Team Maize threw its weight around and was able to allow its running backs to move the ball.

With the way the defensive line looked, the OL managed to create some holes against the likes of Chase Winovich, Maurice Hurst, Rashan Gary and Bryan Mone. Linebacker Devin Bush Jr. was able to thrive in the backfield. With that, the defense made life difficult for Wilton Speight, as the offensive line appeared to not be able to contain pressure throughout the contest.

Unfortunately, Runyan, who looked like one of the best OL out there all game, was injured in the third quarter and did not return to game action. He was able to walk off under his own power, however.

Despite the pressure issues, what appeared to be the first string, or some semblance of it, was able to make Ty Isaac the better running back in the little game action he had on Saturday.

Running Backs Report

As previously mentioned, Team Maize's Ty Isaac made some tough runs and was able to run through holes created by the first team offensive line unit. In limited snaps, Isaac finished the game with five rushes for 47 yards and a touchdown. Isaac was able to find a hole and, with some patience, broke out for a 28 yard touchdown.

Team Blue's Karan Higdon added 19 yards and two touchdowns. Higdon burst through the line for a quick score and looked good doing it. Higdon added a late game touchdown in the waning minutes to put Team Blue up by one point. Also on Team Blue, Chris Evans finished his day with three carries on 10 yards, which also included a direct snap similar to what the Wolverines would run with Jabrill Peppers a season ago. Higdon had a strong second half with multiple long runs and would be considered the second best running back behind Isaac despite having more carries.

Team Maize's Kareem Walker also showed signs of improvement. Late in the third quarter, Walker broke multiple tackles for a short scamper which was unfortunately called back due to an illegal formation. The next play, Walker appeared to be injured and walked off the field with a noticeable limp.

Tight End Report

Per usual, the tight ends were involved in the offensive gameplan with both teams on Saturday. One of the bigger highlights of the game came with a 55 yard strike from Brandon Peters to a wide open Zach Gentry for a touchdown. Gentry showed a nice burst of speed and was able to juke out a defender for the score, an encouraging sign from the former quarterback recruit turned converted tight end.

Peters also targeted Nick Eubanks multiple times throughout the game and was involved in the offense. On Team Blue, Sean McKeon was targeted three times in the first half and had 22 yards, leading all receivers in the first half.

Ian Bunting, who participated in pregame warmups, did not record a catch.


Illinois HS Preps Top Stories