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Raheem Anderson’s path to Michigan, outlook for 2023

The junior out of Detroit has been a pleasant surprise this offseason.

NCAA Football: Fiesta Bowl-Texas Christian at Michigan Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

If there’s one position of comfort (there are many) that any Michigan Wolverines football fan would be able to find from this 2023 season’s team, it would more than likely be the offensive line.

And why wouldn’t you be comforted by that? The back-to-back winners of the Joe Moore Award are back with a vengeance, yielding more depth than recent memory can recall witnessing from previous Michigan teams.

Plenty of talk surrounds the Wolverines’ key returning starting guards, Zak Zinter and Trevor Keegan, while there’s also excitement for transfer portal additions Drake Nugent, Myles Hinton and LaDarius Henderson. And while no one is downplaying the elite talent that’s possessed by Sherron Moore’s starters along the line, where Michigan appears to be the most dangerous at the position is in regard to its depth.

In the queue, guys like Raheem Anderson and others make up what can almost be considered an added layer of starting potential for Michigan’s offensive line. Which of course begs the question: What is Moore’s plan for guys like Anderson that could be ready to see more of the field in 2023?

Today, we detail Anderson specifically to get a glimpse at whether or not he can compete for playing time sooner than expected.

The story so far

Recruited locally out of Cass Tech in Detroit, Anderson had quite the career with the Technicians, and not just in reference to his on-field impact. He was seen as a leader of the team very early on and was named a team captain as a sophomore.

The four-year starter played offensive guard, center and defensive tackle during his time in high school and led Cass Tech to a playoff appearance during all four of his years.

As a recruit, Anderson ranked as a four-star per the 247Sports composite as No. 206 in the nation, the No. 2 center and the No. 7 player in the state of Michigan. He chose the Wolverines over other offers from LSU, Georgia, Michigan State and Nebraska.

As a freshman, Anderson briefly saw the field, appearing in only one game against Northern Illinois. He followed that up with a respectable sophomore campaign, that saw the Detroit native earn snaps at center against Hawaii, UConn, Rutgers and Nebraska.

Outlook for 2023

All signs during the offseason appear to point to Anderson continuing upon his upward trajectory from the 2023 season. During the spring game, we saw him make valuable contributions at center.

What’s also notable are his snap counts from 2022 versus the seemingly competing Greg Crippen (57 to 15). This suggests Anderson may be the next man up behind Nugent.

So long as he can improve his pass protection and footwork, Anderson will be an exciting player to watch this season. His game has drawn comparisons of former Michigan standout Mike Onwenu, as well as recent Outland Award winner Olu Oluwatimi. If those projections ring true, it should be anticipated his name is seen somewhat frequently as a rotational piece.