The Wolverine

November 2022

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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26 THE WOLVERINE NOVEMBER 2022 BY CHRIS BALAS M ichigan is off to a 7-0 start for the second straight year for the first time since 1973-74, and there doesn't seem to be any slowing the Wolverines on the way to a Nov. 26 showdown in Columbus. There's a good chance, in fact, that both U-M and Ohio State will be undefeated when the two teams clash, with a Big Ten East title on the line for a second year in a row. Here are The Wolverine's midseason position grades for the Michigan offense, defense and special teams heading into the Oct. 22 bye week. OFFENSE RUNNING BACKS — A Junior Blake Corum has been every- thing hoped for and more in the first seven games, rushing for 901 yards and a na- tion-leading 13 touchdowns — and that's with playing only half games in Michi- gan's first three blowouts. He ran for 243 yards against Maryland at home, has been over 100 yards in his last four games and put up 166 on Penn State's No. 5-ranked rush defense nation- ally in a 41-17 Michigan win. Corum is averaging 6.2 yards per carry and has a number of explosive runs this year, including a 61-yard touchdown gallop against the Nittany Lions and a 50-yarder in a win at Indiana. Sophomore Donovan Edwards is start- ing to realize his potential, as well. He had his breakout game against PSU, running for a career-best 173 yards and two TDs on only 16 carries, and he is averaging 7.14 yards per carry. He's put up 307 yards and has also added 8 catches for 89 yards and a touchdown this year. WIDE RECEIVERS — A- As expected, grad student receiver Ronnie Bell has led the way here, having caught 35 passes for 429 yards (12.3 per reception) and a touchdown. He's come on strong after the first two games, when he dropped a few balls and looked a bit tentative coming back from knee surgery. He's also been one of the Wolverines' best blockers regardless of position — also as expected. Junior Roman Wilson missed a game due to injury but has added 253 yards on 16 catches with 3 TDs, while senior Cor- nelius Johnson is at 225 on 15 grabs, also with 3 TDs. Sophomore Andrel Anthony is due a breakout game and waiting his turn. He only had 6 catches in seven games, total- ing 73 yards. The positives here — all three of the top guys have caught deep balls this year, an area in which there's room for im- provement. Bell's long is 49, Wilson 61 (granted, on a play that started at the line of scrimmage), and Johnson 54. When that part of the playbook starts clicking, this offensive will be even harder to stop. QUARTERBACKS — A- Senior Cade McNamara had a great fall camp, but he seemed to succumb to the MIDSEASON REPORT CARD Football's Awards And Grades Through An Impressive 7-0 Start Junior running back Blake Corum has done it all for the Wolverines in the first seven games — from 5 rushing touchdowns vs. UConn to a gritty 30-carry, 243-yard rushing performance against Maryland, to a 61-yard touchdown sprint through the heart of the Penn State defense. PHOTO BY LON HORWEDEL

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