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Zak Zinter, Olu Oluwatimi named to Outland Trophy watch list

The interior duo are being nationally recognized.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 13 Michigan at Penn State Photo by Gregory Fisher/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Announced Tuesday morning, Michigan Wolverines right guard Zak Zinter and center Olu Oluwatimi have been named to the watch list for the Outlander Trophy, given each year to college football’s best interior lineman, whether that be offense or defense.

Zinter is entering his third year with the Wolverines. He started at right guard in four of the six games during his freshman season in 2020, which isn’t something a true freshman is usually able to do in college, especially at a school like Michigan. He followed that up by playing at right guard in all 13 games in 2021 as a part of the Joe Moore Award winning offensive line. For those efforts, he was named to the All-Big Ten second team by the media and was an honorable mention by the coaches.

Meanwhile, Oluwatimi enters his first season in Ann Arbor following a successful career at the University of Virginia. He was a finalist for the Rimington Award last season, given to the best center in college football, and was named to the 2022 watch list just last week. The grad transfer easily could have went pro after last year, but is hoping to boost his draft stock by playing under Sherrone Moore and the Wolverines for one season.

These two guys are easily Michigan’s best offensive linemen and are expected to play pivotal roles in 2022. If all goes right for them, they both could hear their names called early in the 2023 NFL Draft.