The Wolverine

May 2012

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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throwing the ball, including an 11-yard rollout toss to redshirt freshman walk- on fullback Joe Kerridge. Bellomy also scrambled for six more yards, before turning the heavy lifting over to soph- omore tailback Thomas Rawls. The 5-10, 219-pounder made his bid well. Hoke noted that Kerridge en- joyed a "tremendous" spring, while others have also stepped up at that spot. "[Fifth-year senior] Paul Gyarmati, He loved seeing the fullbacks as to become redshirt junior Fitzgerald Toussaint's main backup at tailback, and didn't disappoint in the spring game. Rawls surged through the line, popped free off a missed tackle, and bolted 21 yards for a touchdown to cap that second series of the day. "Thomas has had a good spring," Hoke said. "He's one of those guys when you look at the body of work, his physical-ness — he's hard to tackle. You've got to give him credit for that. He's a good football player." Hoke did sound upbeat about his [junior] Stephen Hopkins — I'm so excited about Stephen's growth as a fullback, and he can be a big back in the I-formation down on the goal line," Hoke added. "He's really come on. "We're as comfortable as you can be backs, with Toussaint coming off a 1,000-yard season and averaging 7.8 yards per carry in the spring scrim- mage. He showed a number of crisp cutback moves, while versatile senior Vincent Smith "is maybe pound for pound the toughest guy on this foot- ball team," Hoke said. "You like to see that." spring, and Hoke did not like Rawls bouncing off a would-be tackler to sail away for the touchdown. Needless to say, the head coach, defensive coordi- nator Greg Mattison and U-M's defen- sive assistants will continue preaching fundamentals on that side of the ball right through fall camp and beyond. "I didn't feel tackling like we need no pads on, pads on, whatever. That's an improvement. I said this to a couple people last night — the point of attack defensively, especially up the middle, is not near where it has to be before we get to Sept. 1. That's bothersome." Turnovers prove beyond bother- at this point with our personnel there. I like them all." There's always a flip side in the some to head coaches, and the Wolver- ines committed one in the third series of the scrimmage. Junior quarterback Devin Gardner pitched a pass toward the western sideline that sophomore cornerback Blake Countess timed up perfectly, slashing in and picking it off. Although the Wolverines didn't make a first down on the ensuing, Bellomy-directed drive, sophomore Matt Wile came on to pound through a 43-yard field goal. That drew a ripple of interest from the estimated 25,000 gathered on an overcast day at Michi- gan Stadium. Gardner directed one more series to. That's concerning," Hoke said. "But in the body of work, there were some awfully good things in the spring. "I think we're tougher as a team than we were a year ago at this time. The way they come out and play with before the halfway point of the scrim- mage, the drive stalling out after one first down. He ran the ball (eight car- ries for 42 yards) better than he threw it (2 of 7 for 36 yards with the inter- ception), but offensive coordinator Al Borges noted it wasn't indicative of Junior quarterback Devin Gardner rushed for 42 yards in the spring game, but he struggled throwing the ball, completing just 2 of 7 attempts, with one interception. PHOTO BY LON HORWEDEL Unofficial Game Statistics Reveal A Mixed Bag Michigan doesn't put much emphasis on spring-game sta- tistics, and for good reason. The Wolverines are just finishing up the 15th of 15 practices, and not approaching the final one like they will the opener against Alabama on Sept. 1. Senior quarterback Denard Robinson saw just one series on the field, while other regulars were also limited in their action. There remains interest, though, regarding who did what in the exhibition. In the box at right are some unofficial statistics from the contest, in various categories. 22 THE WOLVERINE MAY 2012 Rushing • Devin Gardner — 8 carries, 42 yards (5.3 average) • Thomas Rawls — 10 carries, 42 yards (4.2 average) • Fitzgerald Toussaint — 5 carries, 39 yards (7.8 average) • Russell Bellomy — 2 carries, 9 yards • Vincent Smith — 3 carries, 2 yards • Denard Robinson — 1 carry, 0 yards (mishandled snap) • Justice Hayes — 2 carries, -2 yards Receiving • Jeremy Gallon — 2 catches, 29 yards • Vincent Smith — 2 catches, 19 yards • Joe Kerridge — 1 catch, 11 yards • Joe Reynolds — 1 catch, 9 yards • Jerald Robinson — 2 catches, 9 yards • Roy Roundtree — 1 catch, 7 yards • Justice Hayes — 1 catch, 4 yards Passing • Russell Bellomy — 6 of 9, 40 yards • Devin Gardner — 2 of 7, 36 yards, one interception • Denard Robinson — 2 of 3, 13 yards Defense • Mike Jones — 6 tackles • Brandin Hawthorne — 5 tackles, 1 interception • Jibreel Black — 9-yard touch-sack • Blake Countess — 1 interception Special Teams • Matt Wile — 43-yard field goal • Brendan Gibbons — Missed 26-yard field goal • Will Hagerup — 8 punts, 46.9 average, long of 66 yards (prior to scrimmage)

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