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Michael Dwumfour is growing into his role at Michigan

Michigan may already have its next Maurice Hurst on the roster.

Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl - Michigan v Kansas State Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Sophomore defensive tackle Michael Dwumfour is making big moves in preparation to start throughout the 2018 season.

This spring, Dwumfour is showing maturity and growth as a player and making coaches look twice at his contributions to the defensive line.

Dwumfour has a natural quickness off the snap, but now he’s also much bigger, stronger and faster. By all accounts, he has visibly improved his game pushing himself harder than he did before. Maybe it’s the two years of eligibility he has left or maybe it’s the momentum of the season motivating him.

But now, he is trying to prove that he is the heir apparent to NFL Draft prospect Maurice Hurst.

He’s always been a talented player. But over the course of spring practices, coaches have taken notice at his improvements. He’s more focused than ever before. They’re praising his willingness to be coached and take more direction. They‘ve also taken notice at his ability to come off the ball quicker and smoother.

One explanation could be that the older linemen have been helping guide Dwumfour. Rashan Gary, Chase Winovich and Bryan Mone have been trying to lead by example and mentor him. As a result, Dwumfour is keeping up the pace much better. He’s continuing to push through the plays and not take any pressure off for every single one. He’s also showing a willingness to listen and learn, which bodes well for positions coach Greg Mattison’s unit.

Mattison told Detroit News, “(There were) times when he’d play really good and then all of a sudden try to take a play off where he wasn’t ready to take that next play, he’s not doing that now. He’s pushing himself way past where he usually would. That’s a real good sign for us.”

Mattison, who has also drawn comparisons of Dwumfour to Hurst, is proud of the progress he’s making. He’s also impressed by Dwumfour’s growth, but more importantly he’s becoming an additional asset Michigan needs on the defensive line.

It sounds like Dwumfour lacked maturity in his work ethic, which happens to young players making the jump to the next level. Maybe it’s the possibility of being in the starting lineup or maybe it’s the confidence from the Hurst comparisons.

Either way, the new and improved Dwumfour may very well wind up being a starter this fall.