Breaking News:How Colston Loveland is a ‘great example’ for Michigan’s wide receivers

Michigan football will be without its two leading receivers from 2023, but the Wolverines will return one of college football’s top offensive weapons: Colston Loveland.

The tight end enters his junior season as the top player at his position, according to PFF. After his breakout performance against Ohio State at the end of his freshman year, Loveland recorded 45 receptions for 649 yards and four touchdowns during Michigan’s national title run.

“He ranked as the fourth-most valuable FBS tight end last season per PFF’s wins above average metric and was fifth in receiving yards (649),” noted PFF. “Loveland’s exceptional athleticism at 6-foot-5, 245 pounds makes him almost unguardable. His 88.7% open-target rate in 2023 placed him in the 97th percentile among tight ends nationwide.”

As Ron Bellamy coaches a receiver room where only one player (Semaj Morgan) logged more than 15 receptions in 2023, he’s using Loveland as a model of the program’s standard.

“He’s the ultimate team player. As great as he is in the pass game, he’s equally impressive in the run game. He’s relentless and a true warrior,” Bellamy said this week on “In the Trenches,” a Michigan Athletics podcast.

“You watch him in practice, and sometimes you have to pause and show the receivers, saying, ‘This is the best tight end in America, and look at what he’s doing.’

“He might be running a go route to clear out space, giving his all to help someone else get open. If he’s doing that, everyone else should be able to as well. He sets a great example for the team, and we’re lucky to have him.”.

The Wolverines have much to determine about their offense — including their starting quarterback, their starting receivers and their starting offensive line — as 11 of Michigan’s top 12 offensive players in terms of snaps played in 2023 departed to the NFL. Loveland is the lone exception, and he’s been impressing his coaches on and off the field as he prepares for 2024.

“He’s smooth, man. I love watching him play,” Bellamy said. “Coach Newsome did a great job, has done a great job with him, and Coach Kasula is taking that over, and he’s expanding his game. It’s fun to watch him, man.

“He works hard. He works hard at his craft, and he’s always asking questions, and he’s like a sponge. He’s taking all that knowledge and absorbing it at meetings, and always I see him in a tight end room, and he’s watching film. He’s watching the Travis Kelces of the world and he’s watching some of the other elite guys in college football and throughout the NFL just trying to expand on his game.”

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