Hassan Haskins crafted a legendary career at Michigan, with no performance greater than his five touchdowns and 169 yards over Ohio State.
Haskins’ was as physical of a runner as Michigan’s had in recent memory, and now there’s an incoming freshman in Benjamin Hall who exhibits some of Haskins’ attributes.
Hall had a great spring game for Michigan on Saturday afternoon, rushing for 96 yards and a touchdown. Hall can break tackles and push defenders forward, the term ‘bruising runner’ seems to apply to his skill-set.
“He’s Hassan-like,” running backs coach Mike Hart said after the spring game. “He’s hard to tackle, hard to bring down. His legs are just so thick. You look at him from the waist-down, he’s a thick guy.”
Hart says people wouldn’t guess the early enrollee just turned 18 years old a few weeks ago.
“He acts like he’s been here a long time. He works hard, he studies, he understands the offense. He’s getting better and better every day. He’s built like a grown man. He’s 225 pounds, his legs are huge, he runs hard. Excited about his future here.”
Michigan is loaded at running back this year with top-tier options as 1A and 1B in Blake Corum and Donovan Edwards. However, last season Corum and Edwards were both injured at some point in the season and it’s good to have as many good backs on the roster as possible in the unfortunate event either of them has to miss time.
Hart said feels a lot better about the running back room right now than he did a year ago at this time.
“It feels really good going into next year about if guys get banged up. If guys get hurt, we have a lot of depth this year,” Hart said.
The depth behind Corum and Edwards includes Kalel Mullings, CJ Stokes, Tavierre Dunlap, Leon Franklin, incoming freshman Cole Cabana, and Hall. Hart says the backs are going to compete and “it’s gonna go into fall camp” before the depth chart is decided upon.
For Hall, it’s all about stacking a good day on top of a good day and consistently being a productive football player. The biggest takeaway is Hall’s been with Michigan just a couple of months and he already has his running backs coach convinced the time will come when he will shine.
“He’s going to be special.”