Michigan football likely 2018 starters

Angelique S. Chengelis
The Detroit News

Gothrough the gallery to see the projected Michigan football starters for the 2018 season.

After a disappointing 8-5 record in 2017, including a sub-par effort in an Outback Bowl loss to South Carolina, Michigan’s football team and coach Jim Harbaugh have much to prove in 2018.

That effort began in earnest recently with spring practice. Quarterback Wilton Speight and offensive coordinator Tim Drevno are gone, but the Wolverines welcome Ole Miss transfer Shea Patterson, who will compete with incumbent starter Brandon Peters, Dylan McCaffrey and Joe Milton — if Patterson is ruled eligible by the NCAA.

Michigan’s offense was less than impressive last season, averaging 25.2 points, tied for eighth in the Big Ten with Purdue. UM quarterbacks threw just nine TD passes; only Illinois (eight) and Rutgers (seven) threw fewer in the Big Ten. Now it’s up to Michigan’s reconfigured offensive coaching staff to deal with one of the toughest schedules in the nation, including road games against Notre Dame, Michigan State and Ohio State, and home games against Penn State, Wisconsin and Nebraska.

The defense, however, should be stout, as coordinator Don Brown returns nearly an entire starting unit.

Who will get the starting assignments for the Wolverines when they christen the 2018 season Sept. 1 against the Fighting Irish?

Angelique S. Chengelis of The Detroit News predicts the lineup.