Michigan Football: What Derrick Green Would Mean to the Wolverines
Michigan fans have been following the recruitment of Derrick Green for about a year now, but things are finally coming to an end.
Green will make his college choice known Saturday, Jan. 26, at 4:00 ET. The list is seemingly down to Michigan, Auburn and Tennessee, with Michigan being the clear-cut front runner.
However, as we all know anything can happen in the world of recruiting. Some fans won't feel comfortable until that official announcement is made or even until his letter of intent is signed.
So just what would it mean for Michigan's offense if Green did wind up choosing the Wolverines?
All information found at thewolverine.com.
Fitzgerald Toussaint Shouldn't be Rushed Back From his Injury
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Regardless of whether or not Green winds up at Michigan, Fitz Toussaint is a huge wild card.
Will he bounce back from his injury just fine and be a better runner than before? Or will he struggle to recover fully and never resemble the same player he used to be?
Both of these are realistic scenarios, and the answers won't be known until the season starts.
If Green does come, though, it will ease the burden of Toussaint's return. His rehab would then be able to be brought along at a more comfortable rate.
Toussaint could possibly feel the urge to rush back into action if the situation at running back is looking bleak in camp.
Green's presence would obviously make the running back competition much better, which would help Toussaint mightily in the long run.
Green Could Potentially Start
Let's face it: If Green signs with Michigan, there is a good chance he could be starting this fall.
Factors including injuries and ineffectiveness have led to the mess Michigan has at running back.
Green would have every opportunity to win the job in fall camp. If Toussaint doesn't participate, there would be no clear threat to Green.
Thomas Rawls would seem to be the main one, but it's hard to have much confidence in him after this past season. Whether his lack of playing time is his own fault or due to reasons we don't know about, Rawls just doesn't seem to be a guy Michigan can depend on. Again, we don't know the whole story with Rawls, though, so don't be too quick to judge.
There are a few speedsters in Michigan's backfield, but they aren't likely to be every down backs. That basically leaves only Green as the team's starting running back.
It Would Take Pressure off Some of the Younger RBs
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports
There's a chance some of Michigan's younger running backs could be asked to do a lot this fall. There are mainly three in mind: Drake Johnson, Justice Hayes and Deveon Smith.
Johnson and Smith have never played a snap in college, and Hayes has very little game experience. It's hard to predict what to expect or how much out of all three of them.
It wouldn't be surprising to see Hayes adopt that Vincent Smith role we've seen the last few years as Michigan's third down back. In fact, Hayes could complement Green well as a change of pace back.
Smith will almost undoubtedly see time as a freshman, as he seems too talented to redshirt. Johnson, on the other hand, may earn his keep on special teams before he sees meaningful offensive snaps.
Either way, Green's presence would limit the pressure on all three.
Green's Presence Would Make the Team Better as a Whole
This one may seem like a bit of a stretch, but let me explain.
Without a doubt, Team 134's biggest weaknesses look to be its offensive line and ability to run the ball. Just about every area of the defense looks to be stout as can be, so that certainly shouldn't be a problem.
The offensive numbers could be ugly at times, though. If Green can come in and shore up the running game, it immediately strengthens arguably the weakest spot on this team.
Even with Taylor Lewan's return, the offensive line will still be a concern as well, but running back is probably just as big a one.
Honestly, if Green improved the ability for this offense to run the ball just a little bit more, it could wind up meaning an extra win in the long run.
Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
Fans will breathe a big sigh of relief if Green commits to Michigan on Saturday. On the other hand, it will be extremely disappointing if he doesn't.
There's a chance he could wind up being a four-year starter and the next great back to wear a Michigan uniform.
He has the perfect body to sustain a beating in the Big Ten and seems to be tough enough to carry an offense.
Michigan hasn't seen a running back of that nature for an extended period of time since the days of Mike Hart.
4:00 ET on Jan. 26 can't come soon enough, as fans everywhere will be watching to see if Green pledges to wear the winged helmet for his college career.