Rashan Gary has been the recipient of most of the press along the Michigan defensive line, and why not. Gary was the number one recruit in the nation in the 2016 recruiting class and deservedly so. In the Michigan off season work outs, Gary supposedly ran the 40 yard dash in the 4.57 range. That’s a decent time for a running back, but for a defensive lineman that weighs around 280 or 290 pounds, that is simply incredible.
The Plainfield, New Jersey native is a very productive player from his defensive end position. He is currently, after the fourth game, seventh on the team in total tackles. He has picked up a quarterback sack and hurried the quarterback another two times. He has forced a fumble and made two and a half tackles for losses.
There weren’t a lot of expectations on the other side of the Michigan defensive line. In fact, there
was little expectation on the Michigan team at all. They lost most of their starters from a year ago.
But, people that thought so little of Michigan did not follow the team very closely.
Defensive tackle Maurice Hurst is projected as a first round draft pick in the 2018 draft.
But, further down the line is defensive end/outside linebacker Chase Winovich.
The Wolverines’ 2014 recruiting class brought in the 2nd ranked player in the country in Jabrill Peppers and he got most of the publicity just like Rashan Gary. Peppers was rated as the top cornerback in the country.
Further down the list in that recruiting class was the 48th rated outside linebacker recruit in the country, Chase Winovich. A 3 star recruit, the Jefferson Hills, Pennsylvania product was supposedly 6-4, 215 and he was pretty heavily recruited.
In the end, Winovich picked Michigan. But, he had to wait his turn.
Jim Harbaugh gets all of the credit, but former Michigan coach Brady Hoke brought in some talent. All of the Michigan NFL Draft picks during the latest draft were recruited by Hoke and his staff. Harbaugh and his coaches just helped them develop.
Winovich was a fullback, and then he moved to Tight End where he was a back up in 2015.
The Michigan coaches moved Winovich to his current position.
With Wolverine defensive linemen Taco Charlton, Chris Wormley, Ryan Glasgow, Mo Hurst and Matthew Godin, plus a certain top recruit in the country named Rashan Gary, playing time in 2016 seems like would have been hard to come by.
Winovich was then listed at 6-3, 245 and he might shrink another inch by the time the NFL comes around with their tape measures.
What sets Winovich apart is his motor. Winovich does not take plays off and he has outstanding quickness coming off the edge. As a junior in 2016, Winovich was 9th on the team in total tackles as a part time player. He also had 5.5 sacks and 4 more quarterback hurries. With 9 more tackles for loss, Winovich practically lived in the opponents backfield.
He hasn’t gotten the attention on the internet, or other news sources, but he has supposedly run a 4.6 40 yard dash. There’s really not a lot of difference in a 4.6 that Winovich ran than the 4.57 that Rashan Gary ran.
For the 2017 season, the senior Chase Winovich moved into the starting lineup and Michigan
defensive coordinator Don Brown could not be happier. The season started off well for Winovich with a sack of the Florida quarterback in their opening game causing a fumble which teammate Noah Furbush fell on for a quick and easy touchdown.
Winovich is currently 3rd on the team in tackles after the 4th game. He also leads the team in quarterback sacks with 5.5. Now listed at 6-3, 253, Winovich still doesn’t stop and he could wind up leading the nation in sacks when it’s alls aid and done. The accolades tend to go to the other side of the field and Rashan Gary is indeed a great one.
ESPN Draft expert Todd McShay currently has defensive tackle Maurice ‘Mo’ Hurst rated as the 10th pick in the 2018 draft.
Chase Winovich will never get the notoriety that his teammates are receiving, but every team needs that guy with the motor that in spite of the press just makes play after play.
Turn on the next Michigan game and look for the defensive end/outside linebacker with the long blond hair that’s making plays.
Chase Winovich and the Michigan defense is fun to watch.