Forward Thinking: My New Years Eve 2017 Michigan Season Prediction

The 2016-17 Michigan football team is officially in the books as the Wolverines finished off its second consecutive 10-win season in heart breaking fashion as UM lost 33-32 to Florida State in the Orange Bowl. So, it’s obviously time to get over that loss and take a look at the 2017-18 Michigan football team, which will kick off the season on September 2nd at JerryWorld in Dallas against the Florida Gators.

To kick off the offseason, I’ve put together a wayyyy-too-early depth chart and season prediction for the 2017-18 Michigan Wolverines:

Depth Chart Prediction

*Includes my latest 2017 BGRC and my guesses for players leaving early for the draft

1st Team Offense

  • QB: #3 Wilton Speight, SR*
  • RB: #12 Chris Evans, SO
  • FB: #80 Khalid Hill, 5th
  • WR: #13 Eddie McDoom, SO – #14 Drake Harris, SR* – #1 Kekoa Crawford, SO
  • TE: #89 Ian Bunting, SR*
  • LT: #52 Mason Cole, SR
  • LG: #74 Ben Bredeson, SO
  • C: Cesar Ruiz, FR
  • RG: #50 Michael Onwenu, SO
  • RT: #76 Juwann Bushell-Beatty, SR*

1st Team Defense

  • DE: #3 Rashan Gary, SO
  • DT: #73 Maurice Hurst, 5th
  • NT: #90 Bryan Mone, 5th
  • DE: #15 Chase Winovich, 5th
  • VIPER: #14 Josh Metellus, SO
  • MIKE: #9 Mike McCray, 5th
  • WILL: #10 Devin Bush Jr., SO
  • CB: #34 Jeremy Clark, 5th*
  • FS: #23 Tyree Kinnel, JR
  • SS: #7 Khaleke Hudson, SO
  • NCB: #28 Brandon Watson, SR*
  • CB: #24 Lavert Hill, SO

2nd Team Offense

  • QB: #18 Brandon Peters, SO*
  • RB: Najee Harris, FR
  • FB: #19 Henry Poggi, 5th
  • WR: #85 Moe Ways, SR* – Donovan Peoples-Jones, FR – #25 Nate Johnson, SO
  • TE: #2 Devin Asiasi, SO
  • LT: #70 Nolan Ulizio, JR*
  • LG: #75 Jon Runyan Jr., JR*
  • C: #57 Patrick Kugler, 5th
  • RG: Andrew Stueber, FR
  • RT: Chuck Filiaga, FR

2nd Team Defense

  • DE: #2 Carlo Kemp, SO*
  • DT: Aubrey Solomon, FR
  • NT: #50 Michael Dwumfour, SO
  • DE: #17 Ron Johnson, SO*
  • VIPER: #59 Noah Furbush, SR*
  • MIKE: Willie Gay, FR
  • WILL: #52 Elysee Mbem-Bosse, SO*
  • CB: #22 David Long, SO*
  • FS: J’Marick Woods, FR
  • SS: #29 Jordan Glasgow, JR
  • NCB: Ambry Thomas, FR
  • CB: #6 Keith Washington, JR*

Season Prediction: 10-3 (6-3), 2nd in the B1G East, Orange Bowl Champs 

While I wouldn’t count out a Jim Harbaugh coached team to be a National Championship contender, the 2017 Wolverines will be a bit of a transition team. It’ll be the true changing of the guard, in-terms of the roster as Michigan will lose around 18 starters to graduation and/or the NFL Draft. That means Harbaugh’s recruits will truly be the core of the team from here on out. And while the future is extremely bright, youth and unproven depth should be tough to overcome in every game.

Homes games against Michigan State and Ohio State will help though I think OSU may be the best team in the country in 2017. Add in a loss to either Penn State or Wisconsin on the road, as well as a random loss thanks to youthful mishaps and I see the Wolverines going 9-3 in the regular season. A trip back to Miami for a meeting with 2016 Heisman trophy winner and 2017 Heisman trophy runner-up Lamar Jackson and the Louisville Cardinals will give Harbaugh and Michigan its third straight 10-win season.

Obviously, this could all easily change between now and September 2nd. But this is just for a bit of fun. What’s your wayyyy-too-early season prediction for the 2017 Michigan football team? Let us know in the comment section below! 

Photo Credit: Eric Upchurch/MGoBlog