Michigan will play two scrimmages this week, the first on Wednesday behind closed doors, and the second on Saturday at The Big House under the lights (8-10 p.m.), in front of the public.
Junior tight end A.J. Williams and redshirt sophomore receiver Jehu Chesson talk about what to expect from those scrimmages.
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"I'm looking for everybody doing the right things at the right time," said the 6-6, 260-pound Williams, who is likely first or second on the depth chart presently. "I'm expecting 100 percent effort. We expect perfection but we know people aren't going to be perfect. We expect everyone to give 100 percent effort all the time."
The scrimmages will go a long way in establishing this team's identity, which head coach Brady Hoke continues to preach as one of toughness, and that starts with an ability to move opponents off the line of scrimmage to run the football.
"We want to be a running team," Williams said. "We want to be able to put the ball on the ground. We want to be able to take time off the clock.
"With our offensive line, tight and receivers - everyone doing their part - that's going to be a big part of our offense. "
Even though he will likely start the year a reserve, the 6-3, 197-pound Chesson figures to play considerably this fall, and he's eager to show what he can do tomorrow and Saturday.
"Me personally, I am trying to improve every day," he said. "I'm just trying to make plays, like the expectations for a Michigan wide receiver. And as a team, we need to be able to move the ball, and defensively we need to stop the ball. We just need to compete.
"It'll be nice just to hit each other again."
Both Williams and Chesson are stoked to practice at night on Saturday in front of an expected attendance of 30,000 fans.
"We're excited. We're looking forward to. A big part of what we do, just like we did with fan day, is give back to the community, and this allows people to come see us show off the product of our hard work," Chesson said.
"This is just like a painter painting something and showing it off to the public. We've been working hard and we want to be showing what we've been doing, and hopefully it will all come together during the season."
"It's always a good opportunity when you get in that Big House, first off, but being under the lights, that's always a special feeling, especially because you know what you've got this year," added Williams, who is excited to wear an all-blue jersey for Michigan's night game against Penn State Oct. 11.
"You guys saw the uniform and the video - how could you not get pumped up about it."
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