The Wolverine

August 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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AUGUST 2018 THE WOLVERINE 61   COMMITMENT PROFILE P icking up a commitment from an interior offensive linemen isn't usually sexy, but it is one of the more important positions for an offense at any level of football. Michigan seems to have gotten a good one in Cincinnati Moeller three- star offensive guard Zach Carpenter. Moeller head coach Doug Rosfeld just took over as the Crusaders head coach late in 2017, but has already been blown away by Carpenter 's physical abilities for a rising senior. "He's the most powerful offensive lineman I've been able to work with and be around at any level. His over- all strength is phenomenal," Rosfeld said. "His bench is at 450 only be- cause we're trying to develop the whole body and not just focus in on a couple of key lifts. Otherwise, it would be an even higher number. "He's already strong enough to play at the college level. I think there are very few people who have the force, power and brute strength that he has." At 6-5 and 305 pounds, Carpenter is a large, strong young man, and he matches his physical abilities with his mental grasp for the game. "His football IQ is incredibly high," Rosfeld said. "His grandfather is an offensive line coach in the area still, and he's coached at the college level and in the CFL. Zach was basi- cally raised as an offensive lineman. His understanding of all positions is off the charts. "He started as a freshman at Moeller High School and that just doesn't happen. There are very, very few four-year starters at Moeller. He brings a knowledge of the offensive line that's rare in kids his age, and he has power that's even more unique." Midwest recruiting an- alyst Josh Helmholdt sees Carpenter the same way. has Car- penter ranked as the No. 18 guard in the country because of his low-risk nature and his already prominent ability to do what a guard needs to do at the next level. "He's a road grader," Helmholdt said. "This is a kid who has a wide frame, making him difficult for guys to get around. You have to have long arms to swim a guy like that. He's choppy enough with his feet to stay engaged on the interior, too. "I don't think he's athletic enough to kick out and play tackle, but he's a fine athlete. He plays defensive tackle as well. He's a blue-collar guy and a straight-ahead road grader. He can blow open some holes and make paths for his running backs. "He might not have the sky-high potential that some have, but his floor is really high — what you see is what you get. He's a guy you can pretty comfortably project as a starter on the interior at the Big Ten level." Carpenter himself is ready to take all of his abilities to Ann Arbor and can't wait to be a Wolverine. "Michigan just checks all the boxes," Carpenter said. "I'm looking at faith first and foremost. Academics are huge for me and a degree from Michigan is way beyond football. That will get me where I want to be in life. "Player development is big, too, and Coach [Ed] Warinner is one of the best there is. He's a great offen- sive line coach. Coach [Ron] Prince and Coach [Brandon] Blaney are both from the NFL, so it's great all-around development." Carpenter has a winning pedigree, a good head on his shoulders and football running through his veins. Last season, those characteris- tics, along with immense physical strength and talent, earned him the Anthony Muñoz Foundation Ohio Division I Offensive Lineman of the Year award, a spot on the USA To- day All-USA Ohio first team, and Ohio Division I first-team all-state accolades. Those are the kinds of players Jim Harbaugh loves and made U-M a perfect fit for the hulking lineman. — Brandon Brown Strong Ohio Lineman Zach Carpenter Picks The Wolverines Last year, the 6-5, 305-pound Carpenter was tabbed as the Ohio Division I Offensive Lineman of the Year by the Anthony Muñoz Foundation. PHOTO COURTESY RIVALS.COM Cincinnati Moeller head coach Doug Rosfeld on Carpenter "He's already strong enough to play at the college level. I think there are very few people who have the force, power and brute strength that he has." FILM EVALUATION Strengths: At 6-5 and 305 pounds, Zach Carpenter is an absolute mauler and perfectly suited for the interior of the offensive line. He's a very good athlete for his size and build, allowing him to handle him- self in the passing game, but he but- ters his bread moving people in the run game. Areas Of Improvement: Carpen- ter is as good as they come as a run blocker, but he'll have to improve his agility and quickness to handle athletic interior pass rushers at the next level. He's a plus athlete, but facing other players tipping the scales at more than 300 pounds will be an adjustment for him. Michigan Player Comparison: Carpenter has a skill set like former Wolverine David Baas. Carpenter carries more of his weight in his lower body, whereas Baas was more top heavy, but skill wise they're close. Baas started as a guard and finished his U-M career at center, and Carpenter will definitely spend his entire career on the interior as well. — Analysis from

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