Spring practices are well under way and Michigan’s spring football game — which was scheduled to take place on April 14 — has been canceled due to weather concerns.
Practices are expected to go until April 24. Until then, players have the chance to not only improve themselves, but impress the coaching staff as well.
Wolverines cornerbacks coach Mike Zordich talked on Thursday about the defensive backs, including Lavert Hill’s hip and groin issues.
“Lavert hasn’t practiced, so he’s losing valuable time, unfortunately for him,” Zordich said. “But that allows Brandon Watson to continue to get better, Ambry Thomas to continue to get better, David Long to get better. It’s great for those guys. They’re growing by leaps and bounds.
“He’s got an issue with his hips or groin. We’re trying to figure that out. I think he got two practices in, that’s been it, but I’d like to have him out there for sure. But we’re not waiting for him, I’ll just say that. Brandon Watson and Ambry have stepped up and they’re filling in nicely.”
Zordich said he was not sure if Hill has a muscular injury.
“Watch him run and he looks fine, but on long plays, he just has some pain,” Zordich said.
Zordich was asked if it was something Hill couldn’t play through.
“I think it is,” Zordich said. “But he’s got to feel right.”
Is it a toughness issue?
“In my opinion, yes, it is,” he said. “You’ve got an opportunity to get better or even just to find out what really is wrong. You’re not going to find out by not participating. It’s frustrating for us, as coaches, but at the same time those other guys, you’re getting to see them blossom, which is really good for us. We’re creating depth.”
The time that Hill is missing is obviously hurting him, yet helping others get more playing time. Another player Hill mentioned as dealing with injuries is Benjamin St-Juste.
“He’s a very gifted athlete, but he’s missed all of the bowl prep and now he’s missed all of spring,” Zordich said. “He’s got to find a way to get out there if he wants to compete for a job.”
The Wolverines will begin their upcoming season on Sept. 1 at Notre Dame.