Erick All is known for catching everything thrown his way in practice, so after the Michigan sophomore tight end dropped a sure touchdown in the third quarter at Minnesota in the season opener, he was overjoyed his number was called again the next play.
This time, All made the catch and went 27 yards to the Gophers’ 3-yard line. Two plays later, quarterback Joe Milton scored en route to the 49-24 victory last Saturday night.
Erick All (Photo: David Guralnick, Detroit News)
“I was way too excited,” All said Monday, explaining the dropped pass. “I feel like the coaches knew that and they gave me the second opportunity, because, man, if it weren’t for that second play, I probably would have never been able to redeem myself and probably would have been in my head. I feel like the coaches knew that they had the confidence that I don’t really drop balls for real. Thank God that the coaches believed in me and I was able to get out there for the second play and do what was right.”
Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh described All as the “unheralded” player of the offense in the first game. He got the start because senior captain Nick Eubanks was unavailable for the game. Michigan’s home opener is Saturday against Michigan State at Michigan Stadium.
“His blocking was phenomenal, in line, on the perimeter, just tremendous,” Harbaugh said. “He had that opportunity for the touchdown, he’s such a good catcher, (but) he pulled his hand away as the ball was coming in. He expects to catch everything and always does. And the very next play caught a ball in the flat and nearly scored. I love him. He’s a great competitor and real football player.”
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During a preseason radio interview, tight ends coach Sherrone Moore said All was light when he arrived last year and needed to add weight. The 6-foot-4 All is now 242 pounds, up from 229 last year.
Erick All (Photo: Tony Ding, AP)
He added the weight in large part, he said, thanks to his several months stay with Michigan linebacker Joey Velazquez and his family in Columbus, Ohio, shortly after students were sent home in mid-March because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Velazquez and All, who is from Fairfield, Ohio, got to know each other freshman year and All would always comment on his strength.
“If you ever seen Joe, he’s always been like, strong and big and built,” All said. “And I’m like, ‘Man, what do you do?’ He said, ‘Bro, if you’d stay with me you’d know.’”
While home, All didn’t have a gym or many workout options. Velazquez was working out. All made a request.
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