Sheridan Out, Forcier In at Michigan?

Mike SalernoCorrespondent IMarch 28, 2009

ANN ARBOR, MI - AUGUST 30:  Nick Sheridan #8 of the Michigan Wolverines throws a second quarter pass while playing the Utah Utes on August 30, 2008 at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

According to ESPN's Adam Rittenberg, Michigan QB Nick Sheridan will miss 4-6 weeks with a "small fracture in his lower right leg" which he sustained at Tuesday's practice.

This news seems to have affirmed the notion that Rivals.com four-star recruit Tate Forcier will be the starter under center next fall for the Wolverines.

Though Sheridan won't need surgery, the feeling coming out of Ann Arbor is that he will be light-years behind Forcier when preseason camp begins in August. Sheridan would have been in a battle he was expected to eventually lose anyway.

Forcier, a dual-threat player who's a perfect fit for Rodriguez's spread offense, would be the third true freshman to start for Michigan in the past five years.

Before Tuesday, it was expected that Sheridan, who started four games last year, would be in competition with Forcier through the spring and into the start of the season. With Sheridan out of commission until the middle of May, the Wolverines are left without a quarterback with any starting experience for the remainder of their spring practices.

Forcier, an early enrollee from San Diego, will take over the first-team duties through the rest of the Spring.

The Wolverines are coming off a season in which they lost nine games, and failed to qualify for a bowl game for the first time in 34 years; thus ending the longest current streak in the country.

If Forcier is given the starting job, look for the Wolverines to bounce back and contend for the Big Ten title.

Michigan fans are hopeful that a year after missing out on Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor, Forcier can be the catalyst that can take the Wolverines' anemic 2008 offense (109th in the nation, 108th in passing) and turn it into the high-flying show that Rich Rodriguez previously put on at West Virginia.

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