It feels like it was just yesterday that the 2023 college football season came to a close with the Michigan football team hoisting the national championship trophy at NRG Stadium in Houston. It was over three months ago, however, and preparation for the 2024 season is well underway. Teams are having their spring games, and we have made it through the hardest part of the offseason. The Wolverines have their spring game on Saturday, and the team is going to look very different.

Last year's Michigan football team was absolutely loaded with talent, and they might break the record for most players drafted by a single school in one year. It was a veteran-led squad, and the Wolverines won a national championship because of it. However, they are now losing just about all of their production from that team, and they have to build things back up.

Not only did Michigan lose most of their national title team from a player standpoint, but the coaching staff is extremely different as well. Jim Harbaugh brought a national title to his alma mater, but he never won a Super Bowl when he was an NFL head coach. That is a still a goal that he has, and he is now the head coach of the Los Angeles Chargers.

It wasn't just Jim Harbaugh that left Michigan. He brought a lot of coaches with him to the NFL, and now the Wolverines have a very different staff. From players to coaches, this is a completely different Michigan football team.

Sherrone Moore is the new head coach for the Wolverines. He did serve as the head coach for four games last season because of two different suspensions that Harbaugh faced. Now the job is officially his, and he is essentially starting from scratch.

There are a lot of starting jobs to earn this season for Michigan football players as most starters from last year departed. Here are some of the most important position battles to watch as the offseason goes on.


Michigan Wolverines quarterback Alex Orji (10) runs the ball against Washington Huskies cornerback Dominique Hampton (7) during the second quarter in the 2024 College Football Playoff national championship game at NRG Stadium.
© Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The QB position is certainly the most important one to watch for Michigan. The Wolverines have been fortunate to have JJ McCarthy as their QB for the past two seasons, and he couldn't have done a better job leading this team. He accomplished everything at Michigan that he set out to, and he will hear his name called early in the NFL Draft next week.

Michigan hasn't taken a QB in the transfer portal, so the names to keep an eye on are Alex Orji, Jayden Denegal, Jack Tuttle, Davis Warren and Jadyn Davis.

Alex Orji has the most playing experience at Michigan as he came in fairly often last year, but he only ran the football. Seeing him throw in the spring game will be exciting.

Jayden Denegal, Davis Warren and Jack Tuttle were all backups last season and are very much in the mix for the starting role this year. They all came in during blowouts, but the spring game should show us a lot more.

Jadyn Davis is a true freshman, so it's unlikely he wins the job, but he is going to be an exciting player to watch in the future.

Offensive line

There isn't as big of a battle here just because there are multiple starters, but it is still going to be interesting to see what Michigan football's offensive line looks like in 2024. The Wolverines won two straight Joe Moore awards for the best o-line in college football in 2021 and 2o22. They were dethroned by Washington last season, but the national title showed that the committee just didn't want to give it to Michigan three years in a row. The Wolverines had the best o-line in college football last year.

That o-line is headed to the NFL, and the whole foundation of that team was built around said o-line. Moore has been around the program, and he isn't going to want that to change. It'll be interesting to see how the newcomers fare next year.

It's going to be tough to match what they did last year with all of the departures, but it should be another exciting season of Michigan football when the season eventually rolls around.