Michigan Football 2023 Breakdown and Preview

An in depth look at the roster changes for Michigan, what are expectations, and predictions for the season.


Jackson Hamm

7/28/20235 min read

Expectations are high in Ann Arbor. After getting over the hump and beating Ohio State the last two years, Michigan now has their eyes set on a national championship. Something that hasn't happened in 26 years. Will a 4 game suspension to head coach Jim Harbaugh cause any problems for the Wolverines? What would a third win in a row against Ohio State mean? Are they capable of beating Georgia? These are the questions that will be answered today.

Before that, subscribe to our YouTube Channel. We will be bringing you college football content all season, you won't want to miss it. Jackson will break down each conference coming into the season as well as predictions and results from each week. All of this can be found here on Hamm's Corner and on The Hamm Huddle. We have invested in some better lighting and audio equipment, new episodes of The Hamm Huddle will look and hear better going forward. Also, don't forget to follow us on Twitter @hammrankings and on Instagram @hammscorner. Now let's take a look at Michigan for the 2023 season!

Michigan Wolverines

Head Coach: Jim Harbaugh

2022 Record: 13-1 (10-0)

Place: 1st in Big Ten East

Michigan was oh so close to their first national championship appearance of the playoff era. A 51-45 loss marked a disappointing end to a historic season. It was a story of uncharacteristic mishaps for the Wolverines in that game. 0/2 on 4th down conversions, just 3/13 on 3rd down. On top of this, Michigan had 3 turnovers in the game. Ultimately, the mishaps were too much for the Wolverines to overcome. Whether it was nerves to start the game or underestimating their opponent, Michigan's season came to a surprising and abrupt end.

The Wolverines come into this season with a chip on their shoulder. But does Jim Harbaugh's squad have what it takes to replicate last seasons success, and even go further beyond?

Key losses: Mazi Smith (DT), Ronnie Bell (WR), Luke Schoonmaker (TE), Mike Morris (EDGE), Gemon Green (CB), DJ Turner (CB), Ryan Hayes (OT), Olu Oluwatimi (OT), Jake Moody (K), Brad Robbins (P) Transfers - Taylor Upshaw (EDGE), Andrel Anthony (WR), Cade McNamara (QB), Erick All (TE), Deuce Spurlock (LB)

Compared to some of the teams that we've previewed so far, it doesn't feel like Michigan is losing all that much. Obviously there's some serious departures that Michigan will have to replace, but I'm confident that they will be able to do so. Ronnie Bell is a significant loss. It will be important for the WR core to take a step up from last year, even with the absence of Ronnie Bell. Luke Schoonmaker and Erick All will also leave a gap at TE that will need to be filled. Overall, if you're a Michigan fan you should feel pretty good about the production returning this year. So who does return from last years team? And who have the Wolverines added through the transfer portal?

Key Returns and Additions: Blake Corum (RB), Kris Jenkins (DT), Mike Sainristil (CB), Mike Barrett (LB), Cornelius Johnson (WR), Zak Zinter (OT), Trevor Keegan (OT), J.J. McCarthy (QB) Transfers - AJ Barner (TE), Drake Nugent (OT), Myles Hinton (OT), Ernest Hausmann (LB), Josaish Stewart (EDGE)

The offense shouldn't miss a step with the return of Heisman candidate Blake Corum, Cornelius Johnson, and J.J. McCarthy. One thing I would like to see this year from Michigan's offense is more long balls. That will be an important development of J.J. McCarthy's game that could take this Michigan team to the next level. Still, this is nitpicking as J.J. already averages 8.5 yards per completion over his career. AJ Barner will really help fill the hole at TE. The run game should once again be dominant. From a team that put up 40.43 PPG last season, it's very likely that they improve on that number this year. That should scare a lot of teams.

On the defensive side of the ball, things look just as good. They held opponents to just 16 PPG last year, and TCU was the only game they gave up more than 27 points. That consistency was vital to the Wolverines success last year. The biggest question on the defensive side of the ball is the secondary. To beat teams like Ohio State and Georgia, Michigan will have to be really solid in the secondary again this year.

Schedule and Predictions

East Carolina - September 2nd | 12:00 PM | 1-0 | (0-0) |

UNLV - September 9th | 3:30 PM | 2-0 | (0-0) |

Bowling Green - September 16th | 7:30 PM | 3-0 | (0-0) |

Rutgers - September 23rd | 12:00 PM | 4-0 | (1-0) |

@Nebraska - September 30th | TBD | 5-0 | (2-0) |

@ Minnesota - October 7th | TBD | 6-0 | (3-0) |

Indiana - October 14th | TBD | 7-0 | (4-0) |

@Michigan State - October 21st | TBD | 8-0 | (5-0) |

Michigan - November 4th | TBD | 9-0 | (6-0) |

@Penn State - November 11th | 12:00 PM | 10-0 | (7-0)

@Maryland - November 18th | TBD | 11-0 | (8-0) |

Ohio State - November 25th | 12:00 PM | 12-0 | (9-0) |

Final Record: 12-0 (9-0)


Michigan's schedule is very favorable this year. Ohio State will have to come to the Big House and Michigan dodged a night White Out game in Happy Valley. I expect Michigan to repeat last year's performance and once again go undefeated in the regular season. This team is just too talented on both offense and defense. On top of this, they have an extra edge they just didn't have last year. That TCU game stung, it hurt the pride of Michigan. They aren't going to let that happen again this year. Ohio State is breaking in a new Quarterback, and I'm not convinced that Penn State can beat a Michigan team that will be ready to play a likely Top 5 Matchup on national television. Jim Harbaugh has done a great job building this program. A win against Ohio State again this year would cement Michigan as the premiere program in the Big Ten. It took a couple years to break though, but Michigan is in the same tier as Ohio State, Alabama, and Georgia. Don't let the SEC fans fool you, Michigan and Ohio State are just as capable of beating Georgia as Alabama or anybody else in the SEC.

Will Michigan get the chance to play the two time champion Georgia Bulldogs? In episode 1 of The Hamm Huddle I gave my predictions for this years playoff. Michigan would have to get through Clemson to play the winner of Texas and Georgia. I like their chances to do that, could be a season for the history books at Michigan. Excited to see what this team will do. I won't be predicting the post season just yet, but stay tuned because that will be coming soon!

Next Up, Michigan State