Michigan freshman safety R.J. Moten is impressing head coach Jim Harbaugh with his conditioning.
The former four-star prospect has implemented bicycling into his regimen, and the results have been noticeable. When asked who’s stood out with their conditioning, Harbaugh mentioned Moten first.
“The guy that stands out the most is (safety) RJ Moten, who’s an incoming freshman, must have a Fitbit watch or something,” Harbaugh said. “He would text me especially his bike riding workouts. He had a workout where he was riding with a trainer, a 52 or 53 mile bike ride. 3,100 and some odd calories that he burned, and he was doing it a couple of times a week. When he finally did show up, he just looked great.”
There are high expectations for the 6-foot, 200-pound Moten. The dual-sport athlete will be playing for Michigan’s baseball team and hit an impressive .508 with 6 home runs, 25 RBI’s, during 13 stolen bases during his senior season. Moten will likely become an impact player in both sports. Moten told media in January that he wants to start as a freshman on the football team but noted he needed to get faster and more loose. “Definitely my speed and my hips a little bit. These kids flipping hips left and right, that’s all I really got to worry about,” Moten said. Riding a bike for the amount of miles Moten does will definitely up someone’s cardio and help them gain speed as well. Moten played at running back and safety his senior season, rushing for 325 yards and 6 touchdowns while racking up 61 tackles and 2 INT’s at safety.
Part of the reason Michigan landed Moten was because they welcomed him playing both baseball (center field) and football when a couple SEC schools only wanted him to play football. “I felt like home on the campus,” Moten said in August 2019. “The coaching staffs were genuine with my parent, and I am allowed to play baseball. Their baseball team making it to the championship, I was following them the whole way.”
Moten’s skill-set bodes well for eventually playing the VIPER position at Michigan, but right now he’s just an impressive freshman fighting for all the playing time he can get during his first year on campus. However, the fact that Harbaugh said Moten’s conditioning stood out the most is high praise for someone who’s just starting their collegiate career.
Maize n Brew’s Stephen Osentoski recently did a film feature on Moten, breaking down his film and more. Watch the video below.