Sam Webb 1-on-1 w/ Al Netter on Offensive Line & Tyler Friday 4* DT Nugget

Submitted by ColeIsCorky on November 3rd, 2017 at 12:27 PM

For all the negativity going on around the Offensive Line play, particularly in pass protection and also regarding the future with how recruiting is going with OL, I thought this would be well received.

For those who are not aware, Al Netter is an offensive line assistant on the staff. I believe he's been with the staff since Harbaugh arrived. Here Sam Webb is interviewing Al Netter on the offensive line play and the young depth behind the starters. Lots of good tidbits in here.

Coach speak or not, this may at least help relieve some concern about the future of the offensive line. Depth is extremely young, and it sounds like the young guys in particular are showing a ton of promise. Probably the guy to watch for the most based off these podcasts, especially next season, is James Hudson. Sam mentions him at the end of the interview as well. Sounds like he could be a star in the near future. Other good notes on Stueber and many others.

And quick recruiting note - In the recruiting roundup, Sam goes into a short discussion on Tyler Friday (High 4* DT out of NJ - #67 247 Composite). Sounds like the staff really likes their chances of getting him (listen to the podcast and youw ill understand). While browsing his 247 profile, I also noticed Steve Lorenz has a note up within the last day regarding his recruitment. My guess is some info has leaked, but I don't have anything else to add other than that. A couple other recruits noted in the podcast as well that's worth listening to.

As has been said before, it would be unwise to give up completely on the 2018 class as far as picking up notable commitments goes. Michigan is also going after a couple top 100 kids in Florida's class which have shown mutual interest. No matter what, Michigan is coming off two top 5 classes in a row, with 2019 priming to be another top 5 class. I wouldn't be concerned about the future of Michigan football, and these podcasts will help relieve the biggest worry of most of us with the future of the Offensive Line play.

Links for today's "Inside Schembechler Hall" podcasts (Part 2 & 3 w/ Al Netter) and Recruiting Roundup

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Recruiting Roundup



November 3rd, 2017 at 12:45 PM ^

I agree to an extent, but the one difference we have here is that these are the first guys Harbaugh and staff were able to recruit AND mold to their liking. Prior years and even this year, you still have the Hoke effect. 

The running game is finally looking great. Pass protection is what I am most concerned about. If some of these young tackles like Hudson and Stueber come through, and maybe even a returning Newsome, there might finally be a legit OL in the making here.

No matter what, we won't know for sure until we see it on the field. Regardless, there is still way more hope there than many of us have been disclaiming.


November 3rd, 2017 at 8:26 PM ^

Not to mention that OL take time. Jake long was amazing by his senior year, first overall pick, but in his early years struggled like many others. Same with Taylor Lewan. Outside Mason Cole and bredeson, they’re all first year full-time starters. But of course they should be able to step in and play in the big ten and be flawless. Anything else shows that the coaches have no clue and these youngsters will never amount to anything.

Watching From Afar

November 3rd, 2017 at 2:09 PM ^

2014 OL recruits (the current seniors):

Mason Cole - 4 year starter playing out of position at LT. Pretty good overall.

JBB - 3-star starting RT who has issues pass protecting

2015 OL recruits:

Newsome - Would be starter if not for the injury

Runyan - Back up guard who almost took over RT becase of how bad it was

Ulizio - Ranked something like 1,200th in 247 that year

2016 Recruits:

Bredeson - Starting LG and coming along

Onwenu - Start RG and destroying peoiple

Spanellis - Back up guard

2017 Recruits:

All freshman


So what I'm getting at here, is the position was basically ignored in Hoke's last full recruiting cycle since 2013 had the 5(!!!) 4 stars, of which produced 1 starter at Michigan as a 5th yr senior (Kugler). All of the rest either retired, tresnferred out, or just never deloped. When you pull in a class like that, getting more OL the next year isn't the biggest need.

2015 was hurt because of the coaching change yet still brought in a good starter and decent back up.

2016 the argument could be made that Michgian should have recruited the position more, but 2 true sophomores who are starting right now and looking good.

The depth is predominantly freshmen, some sophomores, and walk-ons because Michigan didn't pull in many viable starters in 2013, 2014, or 2015. The OL is 1 Newsome injury away from being legitimately good (and 1 developed RT away from Cole going back to center and Kugler making 2013 5/5 in misses). But since the margin for error was already so small, replacing him with the 1,200th recruit in 2015 and then JBB was the best that could happen.


November 3rd, 2017 at 3:11 PM ^

2016 needed 1 more 4 star offensive tackle who could possibly be starting this year, id say the miss on isiaha wilson was big for 2017, he would probably be starting this year, hoke's 2014 class kind of screwed the upper classmen depth and development. Lets hope filiaga is coming along for next year and someone else steps up for a tackle spot. 

Watching From Afar

November 3rd, 2017 at 3:34 PM ^

Yeah, you can't do much in 2015 with a coaching change coming off a below .500 season and Harbaugh having less than a month to recruit. I wouldn't even say it needed to be a 4*, but getting another true tackle in the 2015 class that wasn't ranked in the 1000s+ probably would have sufficed given the track record Harbaugh & Co. had before they arrived at Michigan.

Missing out on Wilson sucked, but missing out on Devery Hamilton in 2016 seems like a glaring loss right now. He'd be a true sophomore or RS freshman who was highly ranked and has played some at Stanford already. Not sure how well, but he could have filled the void instead of a true freshman like Wilson.


November 3rd, 2017 at 4:40 PM ^

in the 2014 cycle.  We took two OL out of only 16 non-punter scholarships. Maybe you'd ideally take three, but the issue wasn't that we ignored the position, it was that we had a tiny class necessitated by our huge 2012 and 2013 classes. 

For both of those guys to be starters as seniors is a pretty decent hit rate too, even if one of them is a starter by relative default.

The problem at OT is largely that Newsome, who obviously got hurt, was the only realistic tackle taken in 2015 (which wasn't really anyone's fault given the transition) and then that we took NONE in 2016 (which was entirely the current staff's fault).  

Sure, it would be nice to have one around from the 2013 class, and that's part of the problem, but no gaurantee a guy comes back for five years if he's better than average, anyway.


November 3rd, 2017 at 4:47 PM ^

our OL is currently and why there has been some struggles. I have seen signs of improvement this year and if some of the young players can develop and move into starting positions next year we should be fine.

We have heard Ruiz is the real deal and expect him to start next year. It's been good he hasn't been called on this year as a true freshman but has gained some experience. I think Kugler has done a good job this year, but expect Ruiz to be an improvement at center next year. You have to believe that both Bredeson and Onwenu will both improve by next year so our interior line should be better then what it is this year.

When it comes to tackle JBB has been making some strides and if it continues could be a decent starter next year. Then you have the likes of Newsome, Horninford, Stueber, Filaga, Hudson who should all compete for LT and play who is the best. Still have Runyon and Spanellis who could be very good depth on the interior next year.

I think the future looks very good for our OL.


November 3rd, 2017 at 12:43 PM ^

Thank you! Sounds positive and looking forward to an improved line play next year. This year seems like an improvement in the works based on last few weeks. Good news about Hudson. I didn't realize he could be a potential star in the making. I don't read his name on the board that often.


November 3rd, 2017 at 12:45 PM ^

But I digress.  I think the OL will be fine.  I trust in Frey because he's been good at his previous stops and Drevno has been a good OL coach before.  It will be fine.

For those wondering, WTF is Ollie Fretter, he owned a chain of electronic stores around Detroit 30+ years ago.  He passed away in 2014.  Here's a commercial.


True Blue Grit

November 3rd, 2017 at 2:59 PM ^

I remember their ads from the 70's.

"  You've got an Uncle in the Furniture Business, Joshua Doore"   Unfortunately for Joshua, it also appeared he had a Godfather in the furniture business.  The owner (not named Joshua) turned up dead in the trunk of a car right before he was supposed to be married, and the Mafia was believed to be behind it.  


November 3rd, 2017 at 1:31 PM ^

Although we were more in the Highland Appliance camp, we did also occasionally go to Fretter (they had a huge store in Livonia and their main distribution warehouse was there, I think). I think Ollie owned DASH Concepts too, which was one of the first mobile / auto electronics places. 

"The competition knows me. You should too." Ah, those commecials...


November 3rd, 2017 at 12:46 PM ^

Quick question in James Hudson: I know he was an OL prospect as well, but what position? He's listed at 6'5", so I don't think he's LT material. Is he a RT or a G, cuz it seems like we're light on tackles


November 3rd, 2017 at 1:17 PM ^

Has great position flexibility and can play guard or tackle. Not sure where he will play but he is probably the most position flexible olineman on the team when Cole leaves. His move to oline was not weird at all and he knew before getting on campus that oline was his likely spot. His balance and length are phenomenal.


November 3rd, 2017 at 4:49 PM ^

clearly has the biggest upside of any of the freshmen at tackle, due to his length and athleticism.  Totally agree that he's prototypical. 

On all the DOOM OL posts, I've been saying that he's the most likely to end up elite at tackle, and if he's ready as early as next year, that would be HUGE. 

Filiaga seemed destined to be a guard from the beginning and his profile indicated as such.  Let the others duke it out for the other tackle spot and I think we'll should be set for a while.

The only question in my mind is whether they'll be good already next year of if we'll have to wait til 2019 for an elite OL.