Notable Additions: Tim Jamison - OLB 6-3 230 Fr. Riverdale, Ill. (Harvey Thornton); Jamar Adams - S 6-2 190 Charlotte, N.C. (Butler); Doug Dutch - WR 6-0 190 Bowie, Md. (Gonzaga College)
Notable Subtractions: QB John Navarre, RB Chris Perry
Notable Returnees: WR Steve Breaston, WR Jason Avant, OLB Pierre Woods, OLB Lamarr Woodley
|2004 FOOTBALL SCHEDULE|
|09/18/04||San Diego State|
Defensive Overview: In a year where there is inexperience at a number of key offensive positions, the 2004 Michigan team will have to be lead by its defense. Depth is a concern at a few spots, and the D-line has all new starters (Jr. DE Pat Massey, 6-8, 276, Jr. DT Gabe Watson, 6-4, 333; and So. Larry Harrison, 6-3, 313), but there isn't any question that this Michigan Defense is as physically talented a unit as Head Coach Lloyd Carr has had. The question before it is: has that talent matured enough to become a dominant force. During the spring it appeared that the Michigan coaching staff made a few changes to help achieve this goal. The most significant difference was the use of the "3-4" scheme. The Wolverines are immensely talented at the linebacker spot (JR. OLB Pierre Woods, 6-5, 248; So. OLB Lamarr Woodley, 6-2, 268; and JR. ILB's Scott McClintock, 6-2, 243, and Lawrence Reid, 6-1, 219), and the 3-4 alignment allows them to get four LB's on the field at the same time. The move could signify a more attacking style on defense -- and the Wolverines have the personnel to be very effective at it. And we saved the best for last: the defensive backfield could be the best in the country: Sr. CB's Marlin Jackson (6-1, 199, and Marcus Curry (5-11, 183); Jr. S Ernest Shazor (6-4, 226); and So. S Ryan Mundy (6-1, 209).
Special Teams Overview: As far as Michigan's punter and place kicker for 2004, the Wolverines is in good shape with both. Fifth year punter Adam Finley (6-4, 209) was a weapon last year when his protection was good (he averaged 40.0 yards), and sophomore PK Garrett Rivas (5-9, 210) won the job early in the season last year and went 9 for 12 in field goals.
In the kick return department, Michigan is in better-than-good shape for 2004. Redshirt sophomore Steve Breaston (6-1, 169) is being picked for preseason All Big Ten and even some All American honors after returning two punts for touchdowns in 2004.
Michigan will take a trip back to the Rose Bowl (or better) if... the team can copy the '97 Wolverines: the offense taking care of the ball and not beating itself, and the defense holding opponents to 10 points a game.
|TheInsiders.com 2004 College Football Preview|
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