Six Michigan True Freshmen To Watch In 2018

Six Michigan True Freshmen To Watch In 2018

Football

Six Michigan True Freshmen To Watch In 2018


Here’s which first-year players we expect to be big-time contributors this upcoming season for the Wolverines.


Six Michigan True Freshmen To Watch In 2018

Even with the new NCAA rule change allowing players to participate in four games and retain their redshirt, these five new Wolverines are guys we’ve had our eyes on for awhile.

Michigan fans might not be as high on the 2018 recruiting class, and that’s understandable.

Jim Harbaugh brought in back-to-back Top 5 classes in 2016-17, but the 2018 iteration came in at 21st in the 247Sports Composite Ranking. It didn’t have the star or wow factor of the previous two, which saw three five-stars and several high four-stars pledge to the Wolverines.

According to the 247Sports Composite, Michigan’s highest ranked player in 2018 was 112th — which would have been the eighth-best player in both the 2016-17 classes.

However, with a smaller class, and a foundation built upon those previous two, the Wolverines were playing with house money. And in doing so, they found some guys that could see some major playing time (in at least four games).

Here are the guys that WolverinesWire has singled out as likely to see the field in 2018:

LB CAM McGrone

We saw McGrone play live the day before Michigan was at Purdue, and he was about as impressive as we’ve ever seen on a high school football field.

McGrone was only a four-star in the 247Sports Composite, but their own proprietary ranking had him at 24th overall, and a five-star.

That’s the level of production we saw that day.

At linebacker, McGrone was in on nearly every single defensive play, even when the offense was running away from him. He notched no less than 20 tackles (likely more), and made the game saving play — a Hail Mary was thrown perfectly over his head in coverage, and he caught up to the receiver and jarred the ball loose for a fumble to end the game.

Fans will like to hear that McGrone has the same penchant for hard hitting as one Devin Bush Jr., who saw a lot of early playing time his freshman year before becoming a bona fide star in his second.

McGrone might not need to see the field much, due to the logjam of players at linebacker as of current. But he’s also the most surefire player in the class to come in and make an early name for himself.

In short: he’s too good not to play.

TE Mustapha Muhammad

Actually, probably the biggest shoo-in to see the field in 2018.

Michigan has a bunch of talented tight ends, but, considering that two can play on the field at the same time, and only Zach Gentry and Sean McKeon have truly proven themselves on the field, opportunity is knocking for Mustapha Muhammad.

He has everything a tight end should. Just ask Greg Powers (247Sports):

“Muhammad is what you are looking for in an elite tight end. He has a well-rounded skill set. He is a top-level pass catcher at the position. He is long and lean. He has long arms and big hands to help him make the tough catches. He also has soft hands. He runs good routes and is able to get open. He will create a lot of mismatches when the team is looking to pick up a key third down or needs to find someone to finish off drives in the red-zone. A dependable blocker.”- Greg Powers of 247Sports

Likewise, new Michigan tight ends coach Sherrone Moore is eager to get his hands on him. We asked Moore about Muhammad during spring ball, and he reiterated that he is the complete package.

“Extremely talented young player,” Moore said. “High upside, very smart kid. Very sharp, comes from a really good family. I think he can bring a different aspect of athletic premise. He’s got great ball skills, great speed, great athletic ability. And, again, I think he’ll just bring a different flash. He’s a really good player. New life and new blood to the team and to the room.”

We would all but guarantee that Muhammad will play in more than four games in 2018.

The rest, plus our honorable mentions:

Latest

More WolverinesWire
Home