Highlights from the BTN bus tour so far

Steve Deace

When the BTN's bus tour camp special from Michigan debuts tonight at 10 p.m. eastern, it will conclude their swing through all the schools in the East Division. Here are the main points they've highlighted at the other 6 schools (in the order they visited them), which will make up half of the Wolverines' 2019 schedule:

  • Indiana -- Gerry DiNardo said "they look pretty typical of most Indiana teams we've seen in recent years." Overall, they were impressed with their skill talent, but concerned about their lack of pass rushers.
  • Ohio State -- Dave Revsine said the Buckeyes "have a lot of talent but a lot of questions, too." DiNardo wondered about how to keep Justin Fields healthy, given they need his running threat to make their offense click, with "no depth (quarterback) behind him." DiNardo also said they have 39 scholarship offensive and defensive linemen, "and they all look like they can play."
  • Maryland -- Revsine was impressed with their running back depth, while DiNardo thought they were strong along the offensive line. However, he also thought the quarterback battle was too close to call between Virginia Tech transfer Josh Jackson and Tyrrell Pigrome. It sounded like the BTN crew thought Jackson was the better player, but the players rallied more to Pigrome.
  • Rutgers -- When the perpetually optimistic Howard Griffith mentions he "didn't see guys falling down out there" during drills as his personal highlight, that says lots of things. None of them good.
  • Penn State -- DiNardo raves about the defense, thinks it's the best of the James Franklin era, but he's also concerned that it's hurting the young offense's development. DiNardo said he expected Sean Clifford to have a stranglehold on the quarterback position, but it was much closer with Will Levis than he anticipated.
  • Michigan State -- Both DiNardo and Revsine said they thought Brian Lewerke looked good and back to his 2017 form. DiNardo also said their overall depth was better than last season, except for running back. All of them gushed over a defense decorated with star players. DiNardo also said that without seeing Michigan yet, the other top three teams in the East Division were closer together than he could ever remember.