Sunday Elaboration: Offensive Depth Chart

With the so-called spring game (just a final practice this year) just a week away now, here is the Michigan Depth Chart as former Michigan staffer Mark Ouimet sees it -- including <b>additional Sunday GBW comments and analysis</b> on each position.<br><br> <b>The Offense</b><br>

MICHIGAN OFFENSE

Overall: the running back position is stacked and Gutierrez's comeback has solidified QB depth. At the receiver positions, Steve Breaston and Jason Avant are best at passes over the middle. The tight end position is solid as well. What this means is -- the U-M offense could be ball-control oriented in 2005, which would automatically help the U-M defense as well. The achilles heel in this type of attack could be the offensive line, particularly the center and LG positions.

Running Back
Overall: in a word, stacked with three excellent ball carriers in Hart, Grady and Martin. If the U-M OL gells, the Wolverine could be ball-control-oriented in 2005.

No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
20 Mike Hart 5-9 192 So./So.
3 Kevin Grady 5-10 228 Fr./Fr.
23 Max Martin 6-1 215 So./So.
24 Jerome Jackson 5-11 200 Jr./Jr.
26 Alijah Bradley 5-6 170 Sr./Jr.
18 Fred Wilson 5-10 167 So./Fr.
44 Jason Eldridge 5-8 180 5th/Sr.
33 Scott Hamel 5-10 207 5th/Sr.

Offensive Line
Overall: the tackle spots are solid, and have a modicum of depth. However, two of the three interior line ispots are unsettled because of the center position.

Offensive Tackles
Overall: With Jake Long out for the spring at right tackle, Adam Stenavich has moved over and taken snaps at RT. Left tackle is solid with either Stenavich or Mike Kolodziej. Now that RS Frosh Alex Mitchell has gotten into shape he has moved ahead of Brett Gallimore as the top backup on the right side.

Right Tackle
No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
77 Jake Long 6-6 338 Jr./So. Shoulder-No Spring
73 Alex Mitchell 6-5 319 So./Fr. Left guard also
74 Brett Gallimore 6-4 302 So./Fr.
Fr Cory Zirbel 6-7 292 Fr./Fr.
Fr Mark Ortmann 6-6 270 Fr./Fr.
62 Jon Saigh 6-5 287 So./Fr.

Left Tackle
No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
79 Adam Stenavich 6-5 317 5th/Sr. Right Tackle for the spring
76 Mike Kolodziej 6-7 328 Sr./Jr.
Fr Tim McAvoy 6-7 270 Fr./Fr.

Center
Overall: OC is the position of greatest concern on the offense. It had been hoped that Ruben Riley could settle back in at LG (from his '04 forray at the LT spot), but OC Mark Bihl does not seem to quite make it over the hump as starter so Riley has moved over to OC at least for the spring. If Adam Kraus can come back in the fall from his shoulder injury and grab the starting spot ... that would help. RS Frosh Jeremy Ciulla has taken snaps at OC as well and has shown promise, but he's young. Bottom line: the OC spot is unsettled.

No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
72 Rueben Riley 6-3 304 Sr./Jr. Left Guard also
54 Mark Bihl 6-4 297 Sr./Jr.
57 Adam Kraus 6-5 311 Jr./So. Shoulder-No Spring
70 Jeremy Ciulla 6-4 305 So./Fr. Right guard also
68 Pat Sharrow 6-3 301 Jr./So. Foot-Limited Spring

Offensive Guard
Overall: Ruben Riley probably having to play Center has left the LG vulnerable as well. Leo Henige could be adequate as LG starter except his multi-operated-upon knee has yet to make it through a season. RS Frosh Alex Mitchell could move to LG as well. At RG, Matt Lentz is not David Bass but is far and away the starter. Jeremy Ciulla has impressed both at RG and Center, but as a RS Frosh is probably a year away form making a major impact.

Left Guard
No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
65 Leo Henige 6-4 339 5th/Sr. Center also
73 Alex Mitchell 6-5 319 So./Fr. Right tackle also
64 Grant DeBenedictis 6-4 308 So./Fr.
Fr Justin Schifano 6-4 302 Fr./Fr.
69 David Schoonover 6-3 297 5th/Sr.

Right Guard
No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
67 Matt Lentz 6-6 305 5th/Sr.
70 Jeremy Ciulla 6-4 305 So./Fr. Center also
Fr David Moosman 6-4 260 Fr./Fr.
60 Patrick Lyall 6-0 289 So./Fr.

Quarterback
Overall: Chad Henne is best when throwing over the middle -- where Breaston and Avant are at their best as well. Matt Gutierrez coming back faster than expected takes some pressure off this position.

No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
7 Chad Henne 6-2 225 So./So.
12 Matt Gutierrez 6-4 232 Sr./Jr. Contact - Limited
10 Clayton Richard 6-4 225 Jr./So. Baseball
Fr Jason Forcier 6-2 205 Fr./Fr.
13 Jeff Kastl 6-3 223 Sr./Jr.
8 Matt Wilde 6-2 195 Sr./Jr.
9 Kyle Cunningham 6-2 190 So./Fr.

Fullback
Overall: Roger Allison's shoulder has been holding up in somewhat limited action; if he is healthy he could well be the starter in the fall.

No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
35 Brian Thompson 6-2 230 Sr./Jr. No Spring
40 Obianna Oluigbo 6-0 237 Sr./Jr.
43 Roger Allison 6-1 233 So./Fr. Shoulder injury - somewhat limited spring
Fr Mister Simpson 6-0 210 Fr./Fr.

Split End/Flanker
Overall: the wideout position is talented if perhaps not deep.
At split end, Steve Breaston is healthy and therefore impressive. Carl Tabb has had a so-so spring, and Keston Cheathem has been moved over for the spring from safety. Antonio Bass will have a chance to break the 2-deep at SE in the fall.
At flanker, Jason Avant is a possible All Big Ten performer. Doug Dutch has had a strong spring as he adjusts to the college game from a laissez-faire high school program. Adrian Arrington has come on strong in the latter part of the spring after a reportedly shaky start.
Bottom line: with Breaston and Avant the starters (and Braylon gone) and Henne the QB, the days of the slow-developing deep-ball passing attack could be over for a while at U-M. Remember the over-the-middle TD pass to Breaston in the Rose Bowl? We could be seeing more of that in '05.

Split End
No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
15 Steve Breaston 6-1 192 Sr./Jr.
17 Carl Tabb 6-2 189 Sr./Jr.
33 Keston Cheathem 6-1 181 So./Fr. Moved from S
Fr Antonio Bass 6-2 195 Fr./Fr.
Fr Laterryal Savoy 6-2 195 Fr./Fr.
45 Brad Cischke 6-4 201 5th/Sr. 18 Ben Wright 5-9 182 So./Fr.

Flanker
No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
8 Jason Avant 6-1 210 Sr./Sr.
16 Adrian Arrington 6-2 184 So./So.
81 Doug Dutch 6-0 195 So./Fr.
Fr Mario Manningham 6-0 180 Fr./Fr.
80 Chris Matsos 6-0 219 5th/Sr.
12 Landon Smith 5-8 167 Jr./So.
14 Tyrone Jordan 5-10 186 Jr./So.

Tight End
Overall: more than solid for another season ... which also plays to a ball-control passing attack for '05.

No. Player Ht. Wt.  Yr./El. Notes
88 Tim Massaquoi 6-4 248 5th/Sr.
89 Tyler Ecker 6-6 247 Sr./Jr.
84 Kevin Murphy 6-5 255 Sr./Jr.
83 Mike Massey 6-3 232 So./Fr.
Fr Carson Butler 6-6 230 Fr./Fr. OL ?

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