Cleat Geeks

Michigan’s Most Exciting Player for 2015?

When considering the most exciting Michigan player for the upcoming 2015 season, I am looking for a player that has the potential to take their game to the next level, regardless of their performance(s) to date. It has to be a player that has not yet developed their full talent, but is on the brink of doing so. Will 2015 be that year?

For Michigan, there are several choices. QB Shane Morris may be poised to break out this year. Or, how about WR Freddy Canteen? It appears WR/CB Dennis Norfleet will remain with the team for 2015 and has certainly shown some flashes of talent in previous seasons – and not just dancing!

 

While I do believe all of these players will take steps in the right direction, I feel confident in saying RB Derrick Green will be that Wolverines player to burst out with a career season.

Green came to Ann Arbor as a highly touted running back recruit (Rivals.com rated him as the top ranked running back in the nation). Unfortunately, the combination of a porous offensive line and him coming into fall camp out of shape (at 240 pounds), meant that Green would have a very disappointing freshman season – ultimately, rushing for a meager 240 yards with just 3.3 yards per carry.

Green then came into his sophomore campaign in better condition, though some argued, he may have taken off to much weight while not adding enough muscle. Through six games, he had run for 470 yards and upped his yards per carry average to 5.7.

 

Green still struggled at times, rushing for just 25 yards against Notre Dame, but he was clearly on the up-swing. Unfortunately, his season came to an end after suffering a broken clavicle on October 4th against Rutgers. However, up to that point, he had showed enough to make Michigan fans believe he could do some good things with a more competent offensive line.

There are two reasons why I believe Green will be electric this season. First, the offensive line is going to be a vastly improved. If they can be more determined in opening some holes, Green will prove he knows what to do with the rock.

Second, Green is reportedly in the best shape of his career. He has stayed lean while adding muscle. This means Michigan will have a lethal one-two punch of both power and speed at the running back position. Green has put the necessary time in the gym for him to become the featured back in Ann Arbor.

In addition, with another year of experience under his belt, look for Green to rush for over 1,000 yards. I am also expecting Green to be more of a factor in catching passes out of the backfield. If he is able to add 10-15 receptions this season, this added dimension would keep their opponents guessing and on their toes.

By the time 2015 ends, Michigan fans will no longer see Green as a 5-star bust, but as a late bloomer who finally lived up to the high school hype.

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