Written by: Joe Ryan
Twitter: @wingspansports (Click that link and shoot us a follow)
Joe Ryan sat down and interviewed one of, if not the biggest, Michigan Wolverine football fan in the world.Mr. Tom has been a Michigan fan all of his life and he gives his insight on this years team.
- This will already be the third year of the Jim Harbaugh tenure. During the first 2 years, Harbaugh has quickly turned the Michigan program back to relevancy, what do you expect out of Harbaugh and the Wolverines in his third season at the helm?
Coach Harbaugh has a got a very young and inexperienced for 2017, however, the team is very talented. I am hoping for an 8-4 record and a bowl appearance and victory in the bowl game. Finishing off the season with a 9-4 record.
- Before the season starts, are there any important position battles that we should keep an eye on? What positions are up for grabs?
The Center position and the whole right side of the offensive line must be replaced.
Center = Patrick Kugler, 6’5” – 300 lbs.
Right Guard = Michael Onwemu – 6’3” – 350 lbs (Very talented and strong, very good run blocker)
Right Tackle = Jon Runyan = 6’4” 295 lbs (His father played at Michigan years back)
Linebacker (Viper Position) = Khaleke Hudson = 6’0” – 230 lbs (Quick, athletic and a good replacement of Jabril Peppers)
- Harbaugh has done a phenomenal job with recruiting. With that said, what freshman is going to make the most impact on the Wolverines roster this year?
I believe it will be the Freshman from Detroit, Lavert Hill at cornerback. Hill is 6’1” – 180 lbs. Even though he is young, he is very talented. The kid has a chance to be special with his long and lean body frame.
- The first two games of the season for Michigan is tough (Florida and Cincinnati) and their last 2 games of the season are even tougher (@ Wisconsin and (H) Ohio State) do you think this favors Michigan or hurts them? Is it better that the games are back to back and they know what to prepare for or would you rather have them spread out?
I would rather spread them out. It gives the players who are banged up a bit of a breather instead of playing intense games back to back. It also would allow the young sophomores and freshman to gain some valuable time and experience if they got some playing time against weaker competition.
- What is Michigan’s biggest strengths this year? Biggest weaknesses?
Michigan’s biggest strengths: The front line of the defense. The front line is led by Maurice Hurst (DT), who will be a first-round pick, and Rashan Gary (DE) (My favorite player). Gary is a 6’5” 282 lbs, who runs a 4.6 40-yard dash. Gary is extremely talented and extremely strong, which is going to boat well for Michigan, since he is only a Sophomore.
- What game is the biggest trap game for Michigan? Why is it such a trap game?
The October 14th game against Indiana. The Indiana game is after the Michigan State game (game I will be attending) and one game before the Penn State game in Happy Valley. The game becomes a trap because it comes off a very emotional game against Michigan State and right before one of the biggest games of the season, at Penn State.
- What is the one game that can make or break Michigan’s season? Which game are you most excited to watch?
The game that will make or break Michigan’s season is against Wisconsin on November 18th. If Michigan can pull out a win against Wisconsin, they can ride that momentum into the game against Ohio State.
- Finally, what would you consider a successful season for Michigan this year? Do fans expect a playoff berth or are they still one year away from that?
A successful season for Michigan would be 10-3 with a bowl victory. In terms of the playoffs, Michigan is a young team and is still one year away.