The Wolverine

Sept 2023

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Page 38 of 67

SEPTEMBER 2023 ❱ THE WOLVERINE 39 peared in 13 games with 12 starts at edge, mak- ing 30 tackles with 3.5 sacks, 7.5 tackles for loss and 5 quarterback hurries. He is expected to play a significant role in the U-M pass rush this season. A.J. HENNING WR ★★★★ The two-time All-Big Ten selection (second team in 2022, third in 2021) as a returner ap- peared in 33 career games at wide receiver with three starts and made 24 appearances as a re- turner. Henning returned 28 punts for 201 yards and 1 touchdown. He also had 11 kickoff returns for 241 yards, along with 9 receptions for 60 yards, and 9 yards on 3 carries. He transferred to Northwestern this offseason. MATTHEW HIBNER TE ★★★ He caught the first 2 passes of his career in 2022 for 15 yards and has appeared in 15 games during his time at Michigan. Hibner has been mostly used as a special teamer and depth player, a role he seems likely to continue in dur- ing the 2023 season. NIKHAI HILL-GREEN LB ★★★★ He appeared in 18 career games but did not see game action last season while dealing with a soft tissue injury. Hill-Green, who recorded 50 tackles in 2021, transferred to Charlotte to play for former U-M staffer Biff Poggi after spring ball. KRIS JENKINS EDGE ★★★ Jenkins has appeared in 29 career games with 18 starts on the defensive line. He started all 14 games at defensive tackle in 2022, leading all de- fensive linemen with 54 tackles and 3.5 tackles for loss with 2 sacks and 2 quarterback hurries. The honorable mention All-Big Ten selection put on weight this year in hopes of being more explosive in the middle of the defense. AARON LEWIS EDGE ★★★ Lewis enrolled early in 2020 and then decided to transfer that summer. He ended up at Rut- gers, nearer to his hometown of Williamstown, N.J. He recorded 54 total tackles in 2022 with 1.5 sacks and a forced fumble. BRAIDEN McGREGOR DL ★★★★ McGregor has played in 23 games with three starts in a U-M uniform. Last season, he made 16 tackles with 5 tackles for loss, 2.5 sacks and 2 pass breakups. He is expected to be one of the key members of the edge rotation this fall and could save his best football for last. WILLIAM MOHAN LB ★★★ Mohan appeared in one game and recorded a tackle in 2020 before transferring to Tennessee in 2021. He was dismissed from the program after a domestic assault arrest in 2022. JORDAN MORANT S ★★★★ He did not play in 2020 and saw eight games of action, mostly on special teams, in 2021. He transferred to Mississippi State during the 2022 offseason and recorded 11 tackles in 13 games last fall. R.J. MOTEN S ★★★★ He appeared in 29 career games with 15 starts at safety, making 10 of those starts last season. Moten recorded 31 tackles with 2.5 for loss, 1.5 sacks, 2 pass breakups, 2 quarterback hurries and 1 interception. He transferred to Florida this offseason. KALEL MULLINGS LB ★★★★ Mullings has played 31 career games in Ann Arbor, mostly at linebacker before converting to running back last season. He scored 3 touch- downs on 14 carries for 31 yards and will stick at running back in 2023. He also is getting a look as a return man in fall camp. MAKARI PAIGE S ★★★★ Last season was Paige's best yet, totaling 41 tackles, 2 passes defended, 1 sack and 1 inter- ception. He will start at safety next to junior Rod Moore this season and is one of the team's most underrated defenders. JEFFREY PERSI OT ★★★★ Persi did not see action before appearing in a pair of games at left tackle in 2021. He played in all 14 contests last season and started his first career game at Rutgers. He will likely be a reserve throughout the 2023 season. OSMAN SAVAGE LB ★★★★ Savage entered the transfer portal before ever suiting up for a game at Michigan. He spent two seasons at Alabama A&M, playing in five career games. ANDRE SELDON CB ★★★★ Seldon played in one game in each of his two seasons at U-M before transferring last offsea- son to New Mexico State. He played in 12 games and ranked fifth on the team with 44 tackles and an interception for a touchdown last fall. DAN VILLARI QB ★★★ He redshirted with no appearances his first year before appearing in four games in 2021. Vil- lari completed 1 of 3 pass attempts for 26 yards and added 41 yards rushing. He transferred to Syracuse prior to the 2022 season and moved to tight end. Last season, Villari played in seven games with three starts and recorded 1 catch for 22 yards. CORNELL WHEELER LB ★★★ Wheeler did not see game action in 2020 and transferred to Kansas the following offseason. He did not record a stat last season. ROMAN WILSON WR ★★★★ Wilson has 59 career receptions for 916 yards and 8 touchdowns and has made 25 or more catches in each of the past two years. He will be one of the team's top two wide receivers on the depth chart this season and could also factor in as a returner. ZAK ZINTER OT ★★★★ Zinter started all 14 games at right guard dur- ing the 2022 campaign, earning consensus first- team All-Big Ten honors for his play. He is consid- ered one of the top interior lineman prospects in the nation and has a case as the team's best offensive player. ❏ TOP CONTRIBUTOR TO DATE RB Blake Corum He had his breakout season in 2021 and then took his game to the next level as a unanimous All-American last fall. Had he not gotten hurt, Corum would have been a Heisman Trophy finalist and may have been the favorite to win it. He is coming off knee surgery but is fully cleared for the season. UNSUNG HERO Edge Jaylen Harrell A jack of all trades, Harrell has the ability to rush the passer, set the edge in the run game and drop back into coverage. The Wolverines are expected to substitute frequently in their pass rush, but it will be tough to keep Harrell off the field given all he does well. If he can get to the quarter- back a little more consistently, he will not be unsung for long. READY TO MAKE AN IMPACT THIS FALL S Makari Paige Technically, his breakout came last season. But with R.J. Moten transferring out, Rod Moore and Paige are U-M's 1-2 punch at safety. Paige could be primed to soar after playing good football throughout the 2022 season. REPORT CARD Players in Class: 23 On3 Industry Ranking: 10th Players Still At Michigan: 12 More than half the players in this class are still on the roster and have found their way into substantial roles ahead of the 2023 sea- son. Seven players could start, while others will factor into key depth roles. A-

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