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April 13, 2013While Taylor Lewan commanded a horde of reporters Saturday following Michigan's spring game, fifth-year senior right tackle Michael Schofield answered questions from one inquisitor, and he prefers it that way. Still, he'd like to become more of a household name this season.
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"Although I like that Taylor gets all the attention, I'd like people to know who I am -- I'm trying to make a name for myself," said Schofield. "Mine and Taylor's goal is to be the best bookends in the Big Ten and I'm going to work my hardest to be All-Big Ten this year."
The 6-7, 303-pounder started all 13 games at right tackle in 2012 a year after starting at left guard. There was some talk in the winter that Schofield might move back to guard to team up with Lewan on the left side of the offensive line in forming a dominant duo, but the coaches felt they owed it to Schofield to leave him at the same post two years in a row. And he's thankful.
"It definitely helps because I'm comfortable now," he said. "Being at the same spot two years in a row, I can really work on refining my skills. Minor technique things in pass protection, having a good punch, staying low in run-blocking. Stuff like that."
While Lewan will always cast a large shadow, Schofield is taking it upon himself to become more of a leader this season and motivate his teammates in their effort to become a nastier offensive line this year.
"Our goal is to be the most physical offensive line in the country, and run it as much as we want, and every time we run it to get four or five yards or more," he said. "We want to run it in the red zone and get as many rushing touchdowns as we can. We just want to be a dominant offensive line."
To that end, Schofield is looking to add a little more bulk to his frame, determined to be 310 pounds by the fall.
He's also eager to spend the summer working with the players competing for the three interior line positions - center, right and left guard. While redshirt sophomore Jack Miller started at center on Saturday, classmate Graham Glasgow got an equal number of reps. Redshirt freshmen Ben Braden (left) and Kyle Kalis (right), meanwhile, started at guard, but they're receiving stiff competition.
"It's going to be a fight all the way through camp to see who it is, and when we decide that guy will have worked hard to win that job," said Schofield, who hopes a starter has been named midway through preseason practice. "As long as we're set a couple weeks before our first game, we'll be fine."