There are many uncertainties surrounding college football right now. The 2020 season is still in jeopardy, and even if a season does occur it will do so likely in empty stadiums with a conference-only schedule. Still, it is never too early to take a look at the Michigan depth chart and the players slated to contribute whenever football does resume. Join us as we comb through the roster and answer key questions heading into this fall.
Andre Seldon, redshirt FR
247 Composite Ranking: 4 stars (CB 10, Overall 161)
2019 Stats: n/a
For true freshmen to see significant playtime time it usually means there is either a gaping hole in the lineup or a talent that is simply too good to bench. When it comes to Andre Seldon, the situation probably encompasses a bit of both. The four-star corner was one of the best of the 2019 recruiting class and heads to Ann Arbor ready to make an impact from the start.
His opportunity lies at the nickel corner spot, as Michigan has essentially no proven options in terms of cornerback depth. The slot role is therefore up for grabs, and while it could be taken by someone like DJ Turner or perhaps one of the safeties, Seldon should get a real shot at earning the gig as well. He may be young, but he certainly has the skills to get on the field fairly early.
Is Seldon ready enough to play real minutes as a freshman?
Seldon was a top 10 corner in his recruiting year for a reason. He has excellent traits all throughout his game, starting with his positioning and instincts. He tracks receivers really well, understanding where the ball is going and keeping himself on top off of the player he is guarding. He looks like a pass break-up machine and has really solid ball skills.
The freshman is very quick with good footwork, able to keep his hips fluid and explode to the ball. When needed, Seldon can use his speed to close down on receivers who have gotten behind him. In short, he looks like the complete package in a corner and should be able to occupy the slot role at some point during his first year on campus, especially with the lack of proven competition.
The one real knock on his game is his height; Seldon stands just 5-foot-8. However, this has not limited his game so far, and his outstanding athleticism in basically every other area helps mitigate this disadvantage. It could ultimately limit his ceiling, but everything else about him seems more than up to the task. There will be receivers that can out-reach him, but keeping him in the slot to start out may neutralize the playing field somewhat.
Seldon is young, and that is always a bit of a risk, but in terms of his qualities, he looks like a high-floor player that can bring some consistency to a position that currently has a lot of needs. Michigan has not hesitated to throw freshmen into key roles if they are ready, and even with an atypical offseason, Seldon should be able to make his case to the coaching staff. At the very least he should see some rotational snaps in 2020, but this is the type of prospect that can get on the field early and often.