The Wolverine

2022 Michigan Football Preview

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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146 ■ THE WOLVERINE 2022 FOOTBALL PREVIEW 3. WR Nico Collins Michigan brought in what appeared to be a loaded wide receiver class during the 2017 cycle, and Collins wound up being the best of the bunch. He played in only four games and had 3 catches for 27 yards as a freshman, but he leaped his sophomore year. Collins appeared in all 13 games with 11 starts and made 38 grabs for 632 yards and 6 touchdowns, earn- ing him an All-Big Ten honorable mention nod and the team's most improved offensive player award. Collins built on his production with another strong campaign in 2019, finishing with 37 receptions for 729 yards and 7 touchdowns. He also led the Big Ten with 19.7 yards per catch and was Michigan's Offensive Player of the Year. Collins announced his return for the 2020 season but elected to opt out due to the pan - demic to prepare for the pros. The Houston Texans selected him in the third round of the 2021 NFL Draft. 4. OL Andrew Stueber His five seasons in Ann Arbor were as productive and workmanlike as it gets for an offensive lineman. Stueber only played in one game on special teams during his freshman season but worked himself into a key role during his sophomore campaign. He appeared in all 13 games and played 11 at right tackle with a pair of starts against Ohio State and in the Peach Bowl against Florida. Stueber had to fight through adversity during his junior season, tearing his ACL in training camp while battling Jalen Mayfield for the starting right tackle job. His re- turn in 2020 saw him kick inside to right guard for the first two weeks before Mayfield was injured, necessitating a move back to right tackle. Year 5 was the best for Stueber. He started all 14 games for the Wolverines and anchored a unit that won the Joe Moore Award, given to the top offensive line in the country. His play earned him second-team All-America praise from the American Football Coaches Association and helped lead Michigan to a Big Ten champion- ship and a trip to the College Football Playoff. The New England Patriots selected him in the seventh round of the 2022 NFL Draft. 5. WR Donovan Peoples-Jones Jim Harbaugh's second five-star signee and a local product from Cass Tech in Detroit, Peoples- Jones never quite lived up to the lofty expecta- tions placed upon him, but still was a tremendous playmaker during his college career. Peoples-Jones made an impact from the jump, re- ceiving the team's Rookie of the Year award and grab- bing Freshman All-America honors as a punt returner. He racked up 654 all-purpose yards and a punt return touchdown during his rookie year. Peoples-Jones started to come into his own as a wideout during the 2018 season, totaling 47 catches for 612 yards and 8 scores, grabbing all-conference third-team honors as both a wide- out and returner. His production dipped in 2019 with nine starts in 11 games, 34 receptions for 438 yards and 6 touchdowns. Peoples-Jones finished his career with 37 games played, 2,155 all-purpose yards and 16 touchdowns (14 receiving). He left after his junior season and was drafted in the sixth round by the Cleveland Browns in 2020. YEAR-BY-YEAR RECORD 2017: 8-5, 5-4 Big Ten, Outback Bowl vs. South Carolina (L, 26-19). Final Rankings: AP unranked, Coaches unranked 2018: 10-3, 8-1 Big Ten, Peach Bowl vs. Florida (L, 41-15). Final Rankings: AP No. 14, Coaches No. 14 2019: 9-4, 6-3 Big Ten, Citrus Bowl vs. Ala- bama (L, 35-16). Final Rankings: AP No. 18, Coaches No. 19 2020: 2-4, 2-4 Big Ten, No bowl appearance. Final Rankings: AP unranked, Coaches unranked 2021: 12-2, 8-1 Big Ten, Orange Bowl (CFP Semifinal) vs. Georgia (L, 34-11). Final Rankings: AP No. 3, Coaches No. 3 FIVE-YEAR RECORD Overall: 41-18 (69.5 percent) Big Ten: 29-13 (69.0 percent) Bowl Games: 0-4 Versus Ohio State: 1-3 Versus Michigan State: 2-3 Versus Notre Dame: 1-1 Top-20 AP Finishes: 3 – 2018, 2019, 2021 BIG TEN TEAMS' OVERALL WINNING PERCENTAGES FROM 2017-21 Rk. School Rec. Pct. 1. Ohio State 56-7 .889 2. Wisconsin 44-17 .721 3. Iowa 43-18 .704 4. Michigan 41-18 .694 5. Penn State 42-19 .688 6. Michigan State 37-22 .627 7. Minnesota 35-23 .603 8. Northwestern 32-28 .533 9. Purdue 28-29 .491 10. Indiana 26-31 .456 11. Maryland 21-33 .388 12. Nebraska 19-37 .339 13. Illinois 17-38 .309 14. Rutgers 15-43 .258 PHOTO BY PER KJELDSEN

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