It's almost April and spring football practice is underway. Some notable news coming out of spring is that the Wolverines are noticeably bigger and heavier than they were last fall.
The offensive line in particular has had some serious increases in terms of weight since August. This is, no doubt, to help control the line of scrimmage in the notoriously physical Big Ten. Also, Michigan is installing a 3-3-5 defense in order to be more versatile.
Underlying these headlines, though, there is a serious issue that nobody in the mainstream media seems to want to address. Michigan Football has "problems" looking ahead to this fall.
These problems haven't been an issue for two years, and it will definitely have the ability to impact the season ahead in a major way. What are these problems you say?
Number one, as of right now, Michigan appears to have three competent quarterbacks who fit their system practicing this spring. One of these guys is going to be a sophomore and returning starter. Of course, I mean Tate Forcier who passed for over 2,000 yards as a true freshman. This is his second spring in Ann Arbor.
The second of the three quarterbacks is another sophomore, a guy who played a great deal as a true freshman and showed promise, particularly as a runner. Denard Robinson has already displayed rare speed and quickness.
If he can learn the offense and continue to develop as a passer (supposedly has been surprising onlookers), he could be dangerous.
Devin Gardner is an all-world recruit who enrolled in January. Devin is a "big, strong guy, and a tremendous athlete,5" and will add the competition and depth that this team has sorely needed. All three are blue-chips that fit the system perfectly.
In addition to the quarterback position, the running backs have too many legs and not enough footballs to go around. Mike Cox and Mike Shaw have been explosive in practice along with Fitzgerald Toussaint.
Freshmen Stephen Hopkins is scary big, along with Austin White who has shown a lot of potential thus far. Amidst all the size and talent, teams will still have to factor in do-it-all back Vincent Smith who returns this summer.
Lastly, there are about a dozen scholarship defensive backs on the roster, and it isn't even August yet, when Michigan gets about a half dozen more to compete.
Alas, Michigan has experience, competition, and depth at virtually every position group which is vital to the chemistry of any college football team.
They don't have a new DC for the first time in three years, and finally won't have to start a freshman or walk-on at the quarterback position. If these things are a problem then they are a good one to have, and problems Michigan's hasn't had since 2007.