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Michigan offensive line wins Joe Moore Award, named best in country

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The Wolverines accomplished a lot on offense this year, and it all starts up front.

NCAA Football: Big Ten Football Championship-Iowa vs Michigan Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The University of Michigan Wolverines’ football team’s offensive line has won the 2021 Joe Moore Award, the school announced on Tuesday evening.

The award has been around since 2015 and is given to the top offensive line in college football. Michigan is the second team from the Big Ten to win the award, with Iowa winning the first award for the conference in 2016.

The Wolverines have been one of the best teams in college football this season, and their people movers up front are a big reason why. The group has helped Michigan rack up 5,875 yards of offense, the second-highest single-season total in program history. The Wolverines averaged 37.7 points (13th best mark in NCAA) and 451.9 yards (18th best) per game.

The offensive line has conceded the fewest tackles for loss (27) and third-fewest sacks (10) in the nation this season, behind only Army and Air Force.

Tackle Andrew Stueber (13 starts) was named a second-team All-American by the American Football Coaches Association, while center and captain Andrew Vastardis (13 starts) was a second-team CoSIDA Academic All-American honoree. Stueber was also the recipient of Michigan’s Hugh H. Rader Award, given to the Wolverines’ best lineman.

Stueber was named a first-team All-Big Ten selection by media. Vastardis and guard Zak Zinter (11 starts) were second-team honorees, with tackle Ryan Hayes (13 starts) earning a second-team honor in the coaches poll.

Rounding out the rest of the unit, Trevor Keegan (10 starts), Chuck Filiaga (four starts) and Karsen Barnhart (two starts) all had solid showings this year.

The unit is led by first-year offensive line coach and fourth-year Michigan assistant coach Sherrone Moore, who was named the offensive line coach and co-offensive coordinator last offseason.