The Wolverine

September 2021

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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10 THE WOLVERINE SEPTEMBER 2021   INSIDE MICHIGAN ATHLETICS Michigan redshirt sophomore tight end Luke Schoonmaker has caught only two passes in his three years in Ann Arbor, but coaches and team- mates believe he's ready to take the next step and become one of the breakout performers on offense. Schoonmaker talked about his im- provement and more in the second week of fall camp. The Wolverine: Coach [Jim] Har- baugh said you're playing great foot- ball. How has camp gone for you in the early going? Luke Schoonmaker: "I'm feeling my best right now. I think the coaches have done a good job with us and making sure that we are attacking each day. The guys around me, too, and the other tight ends, we're just so encouraging for each other. "I've felt really great the past few weeks. I think we have a lot of guys that are going to contribute this year. Us all working together, we're looking really good right now." The Wolverine: What 's different about this season compared to past years for you, and what was the em- phasis this summer? Schoonmaker: "It was the play- book, but I think it's more of me un- derstanding that I'm older now and this is a good time for me to really bring the team together and to con- tinue to push guys and mentor guys … just really continue to work hard. Position-wise, emphasizing those little details." The Wolverine: What are some of the other things you studied in the offseason? Schoonmaker: "I love watching NFL film, watching the best guys do it, and trying to emulate that in practice. I've been thinking of something small to do every day to become a little bit better … just trying to build off that." The Wolverine: Not many are talk- ing about the tight ends like they are the receivers and running backs be- ing a strength of the team. How do you take that as a group? Schoonmaker: "I think this camp has allowed us to show that we can absolutely be in that same category … just with being involved in the pass game, run game. Everybody has been making their own strides. It's been noticeable out of everybody. "Carter [Selzer] has been playing awesome. Erick [All] has been working his butt off. Joel [Honigford] has been looking amazing and Hibby [Matt Hib- ner], too. We're all making strides in our own way and just encouraging each other." The Wolverine: What has Jay Har- baugh brought to the table in his first season back coaching tight ends after a few years with the running backs? Schoonmaker: "Coach Jay has such a great way of how he attacks the play- book with us, how he attacks adjust- ments with us … applies a lot of things to life. I love that about him. Coach [Sherrone] Moore did the same thing. I think they're pretty similar in a lot of ways. "I really appreciate Coach Jay, just the details … he makes it easier for the younger guys to understand. He's been really great with that." — Chris Balas Coaches and teammates believe Schoonmaker — who has just two career receptions so far — is on the verge of a breakout season in 2021. PHOTO BY LON HORWEDEL Sitting Down With Redshirt Sophomore Tight End Luke Schoonmaker

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