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There are many other moments throughout the season that stand out, as well.
Those are issues Speight must overcome if Michigan is to win the Big Ten Championship in 2017. And for a while, he did — though there were some growing pains.
Well, maybe O'Korn has improved his game over the course of a calendar year.
Those numbers were off the pace he set in his first year as the starter. Notes: A number of things stand out here. Grade: There's plenty to critique, but I’ll give Michigan at least some credit for not completely falling apart after Speight went down with injury. We take a look at the quarterback position for the 2017 Michigan Wolverines. The Wolverines finished 111th in passing yards, 96th in yards per attempt, 103rd in completion percentage, 119th in passing touchdowns and 111th in passer rating, culminating in one of the worst quarterback performances among all major-conference teams.
One cracked three vertebrae in September, missed the rest of the season and decided to transfer.
Dropped passes: 19 (one per every 8.2 attempts), Dropped passes: 5 (one per 16.2 attempts), Dropped passes: 2 (one per every 32 attempts). Of course, that proved to be a mirage.
Now, it’s time.
He helped polish off the Scarlet Knights — and then mostly watched as the running game took over in wins over Minnesota and Maryland. So does Peters’. Peters, with three-and-a-half games of starting experience under his belt, would appear to be the favorite. We’ll soon find out who the underdog should have been. One thing’s for sure: there’ll only be more quarterback intrigue between now and next season’s opener at Notre Dame. Against Michigan State in a monsoon, O’Korn tossed interceptions on three straight drives. In the midst of a competitive battle at Wisconsin, Peters took a shot that knocked him out.
On a micro level, quarterback struggles were a primary focal point at some point in 10 of Michigan’s 12 games this season, as all three quarterbacks struggled with an inexperienced offensive line and an even more inexperienced receiving corps.
Then on Sunday afternoon, he announced his plans to transfer elsewhere for his final year of eligibility, removing himself from the equation for next year.
THE FUTURE: Speight’s transfer removes one big piece of the puzzle. That bodes well for how good Peters is at the moment, and how great he could become. The Maize strikes first: https://t.co/BEyAQnfehF, 2017 Michigan Football Position Preview: Quarterback, Michigan moves up in final AP Poll before season opener, The Wolverines will have to prove they belong, Michigan should embrace underdog status vs. Minnesota. Most games, Speight managed them well, limiting mistakes and turnovers. Michigan football fans have a lot to look forward to in 2017. O’Korn ultimately transferred to Michigan. The staff weighs in on on Michigan’s 2020 season record. There was no Michigan receiver nearby.
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Redshirt freshman quarterback Brandon Peters emerged as the team's best signal caller until he fell injured. But don’t underlook freshman Dylan McCaffrey, who redshirted this year. There are other quarterbacks in the fold, and we have them all covered for you in this position preview. One filled in for an injured teammate, eventually lost his job, then returned to the spotlight for the biggest game of the year. With the Michigan football team’s 2017 regular season in the books, the Daily looks back at the performance of each unit this year and looks ahead to the future in 2018. Most painfully, inconsistent quarterback play doomed the Wolverines against No. They stayed ready until it was time.
#3 | RS Junior | 6-6 | 243 | Richmond, Va. Wilton did a lot of good things as Michigan’s starting quarterback in 2016. Earlier this week, Harbaugh said that Wilton Speight and John O’Korn have created separation from the other quarterbacks in the battle for the starting nod. Through the first three games, Speight completed 54.3 percent of his passes, averaging 7.17 yards per attempt, with three touchdowns and two interceptions.
It’ll be hard to forget the moxie he played with on the road against the fifth-ranked Badgers, as well, when he completed 9-of-18 passes for 157 yards before his untimely exit.
But it’s also worth noting that even he would need significant progress to emerge as one of the Big Ten’s best quarterbacks last fall. There is something to be said for a team having three quarterbacks that all won games and completed more than half of their passes, and good quarterback play ensured Michigan took down Maryland and Purdue on the road, but to suggest that the Wolverines’ quarterbacks were net positives this fall is a stretch.
McCaffrey earned high praise from defensive coordinator Don Brown for his work on the scout team this fall, and he was a highly-touted recruit like Peters. As a former quarterback himself, Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh noted the importance of the position as it pertains to a football team.
17 Florida that much harder. LOW POINT: Speight’s injury stands out. Michigan football quarterback Dylan McCaffrey is reportedly opting out and transferring. Minnesota has talent and a lot of hype. Malzone will likely be buried behind Peters on the depth chart.
The season began with Speight — a redshirt junior and the incumbent — as the starter following a heated competition throughout spring practice and fall camp.
What’s next: Unlike other positions, Michigan’s quarterback room will look markedly different next fall.
Early in the fourth game of the year, he took a hit to his lower back and didn’t get up. 2017 Michigan State football preview: The quarterbacks. He was carted off the field and O’Korn stepped back in. Speight and O’Korn are gone, Dylan McCaffrey will step into the mix after a redshirt season, Joe Milton and Kevin Doyle will join the team as 2018 commits and, if Sam Webb’s projections hold true, former five-star quarterback Shea Patterson will transfer from Ole Miss and be eligible to compete for the starting job. Backed by one of the top defenses in the nation, he wasn’t asked to do much most weeks, as 20 points usually won Michigan the football game. There were plenty of factors at play, but the Wolverines’ weak point in 2017 was undoubtedly their passing attack, and that falls largely on Michigan’s three quarterbacks.
Freshman Dylan McCaffrey will likely be redshirted this year, but he will likely be Michigan's quarterback of the future as well. If Peters can come back for the bowl game to build on his first few performances, Michigan’s coaching staff might have its quarterback of the future.
However, his production dipped the following season, where he threw for 6 touchdowns and 8 interceptions. If McCaffrey can add some weight and muscle to his frame and ultimately have a good grasp of the Michigan offense, he could become a special quarterback for the Wolverines. What went well: Not all that much. But he’ll be facing an uphill battle — he fell behind Peters on the depth chart, and if McCaffrey had not redshirted, he might’ve been ahead of Malzone as well. ... Mark Dantonio has been unwavering in his support of Lewerke and believes MSU has found a potentially special quarterback.
Quarterbacks are partially responsible for drops and sacks, but those are high numbers to work with.
As a freshman at Houston, O'Korn threw for 3,117 yards and 28 touchdowns. The Wolverines saw three different players take snaps from under center. There were plenty of factors at play, but the Wolverines’ weak point in 2017 was undoubtedly their passing attack, and that falls largely on Michigan’s three quarterbacks. At this time in August of 2016, there was a quarterback battle going on between O'Korn and Wilton Speight.
9 Ohio State. In that moment, O’Korn looked capable of taking then-No. Plays that should’ve gained big yardage turned into incompletions. He and Joe Milton were front-runners for the starting job. Where Speight struggled was against top competition at the tail end of the season, losing to both Ohio State and Florida State. The next week, O’Korn completed 10-of-20 passes for just 58 yards. When asked to perform in the clutch, the results were mixed. Boy, that was a turbulent year for Michigan quarterbacks. So, we are in the same territory as we were in last year at this same exact time. WATCH: Michigan Football Preseason Hype Video - “Year 6”.
He just needs time to develop. Will Peters follow the same trajectory? When Speight missed a game against Indiana, O'Korn led the Wolverines to victory in a snow-filled Michigan Stadium, completing 7 of 16 passes, for 59 yards. What didn’t go well: The three quarterbacks completed 37 of 104 passes beyond 10 yards, none of the three completed more than 50 percent of their passes under pressure and Michigan’s nine passing touchdowns and eight interceptions. Speight won the competition last year, so why would anything change this time around?
Season summary: For the first time since 1984, Michigan had three different starting quarterbacks, and just like that year’s 6-6 campaign, it showed.
In all, O'Korn appeared in eight games in 2016, seven of which were of the mop-up duty variety.
And the last — the only member of the trio who will be on next year’s roster — wrested the starting job away midseason and flashed his potential a few times before suffering a nasty concussion.
Preseason Spotlights from Behind Enemy Lines: The Rest of the Big Ten.
Alex Malzone is still on the roster, but he isn’t in the conversation to compete for the starting quarterback spot.
The Wolverines are currently slated to bring in two freshmen next year in four-star Joe Milton, who recently tweeted that he would enroll early, and three-star Kevin Doyle. In his defense, he was still banged up from a shoulder injury against Iowa and was not fully healed. In this edition: quarterbacks. CBS Sports is a registered trademark of CBS Broadcasting Inc. By all accounts, Speight was supposed to serve as a veteran presence for an offense that featured seven new starters this year. Against Iowa, Ohio State, and Florida State, he had costly interceptions that drastically impacted the game.
A great person to be compared to, as Luck was a great quarterback for Harbaugh at Stanford. C-minus. But Speight wouldn’t get a chance to return to his prior form. Jim Harbaugh compared Peters to Andrew Luck last season. How the quarterback does will be a direct correlation to the hopes Michigan has of appearing in the College Football Playoff. Then, with one final chance to win the game, O’Korn misread the Buckeyes’ coverage and threw an interception. While Peters faces an uphill battle to win the starting job, the fact Harbaugh called said the quarterback competition was in a dead heat last month. The two will be the favorites in the starting competition next year. The competition dragged on for a few weeks, until Speight finally pulled away and won the job. We will find out soon enough, but the fact Harbaugh didn't announce a starter before August practices indicates he believes O'Korn has a shot at the job.
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