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NCAA Football Big 10 FootballMichigan Wolverines

Michigan’s Devin Gardner Will Open Some Eyes in 2013

Devin Gardner

Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The Michigan Wolverines are one of the Big Ten favorites to win the conference title this season. With a new quarterback in place, this team has high expectations and for good reason. Devin Gardner is set to take over the position left open by former star quarterback Denard Robinson.

When looking at Gardner, he’s a physical specimen at the quarterback position. He stands 6-foot-4 and weighs in at 210 pounds, a far bigger body than the guy he replaced. He, however, doesn’t have the same type of speed that Robinson had. Gardner is considered a dual-threat, but saying he’s speedy isn’t exactly the word to be used for him.

Brady Hoke had received a ton of praise for leaving Gardner in even after Robinson came back from injury in 2012. Starting in just five games last year, the junior quarterback passed for 1,219 yards, 11 touchdowns, five interceptions and he also finished with 101 yards and seven touchdowns on the ground.

This guy knows how to get the ball into the endzone and with Jeremy Gallon returning, this team will only be better, improving from the 8-5 record they finished with in 2012.

With a couple solid options at the running back position in Derrick Green and Fitzgerald Toussaint, he will have a ton of weight off his shoulders when the going gets tough.

I could easily see Gardner passing for over 3,000 yards and over 20 touchdowns this season while rushing for about 500 with 10 scores. I wouldn’t doubt it if he was considered for conference player of the year and Michigan fans will soon forget the days when he wasn’t taking the snaps in Ann Arbor.

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Connor Muldowney is a columnist for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @Connormuldowney, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google. You can also reach him at muldown5@gmail.com.