A year ago, Bruce Feldman of The Athletic released his annual College football Freaks List and Michigan EDGE Aidan Hutchinson came in at No. 2, trailing only LT Evan Neal out of Alabama, who was named the No. 1 Freak in college football heading into the 2021 season.
One year later, the Wolverines have landed another player on the list, and this time it is DT Mazi Smith who has been named by Feldman as the No. 1 freak in college football heading into the 2022 season.
Michigan Football has ‘No. 1 Freak' in college football
In his latest College Football Freaks List, Feldman ranks the Top 100 athletic freaks heading into the 2022 season and Mazi Smith leads the way.
Here is some of what Feldman had to say about Smith.
His former teammate, Aidan Hutchinson, almost was our top guy in 2021, but this year a Wolverine is the No. 1 Freak in college football. The 6-foot-3, 337-pound senior has rare power and agility. So rare, in fact, it’s hard to find the right superlative to begin with. But let’s start with this: Smith does 22 reps on the bench press, but that’s with 325 (not 225). He close-grip benched 550 pounds. He vertical-jumps 44 inches. He broad-jumped 9-4 1/2. Smith, who had 37 tackles last season, has clocked a 4.41 shuttle time, which would’ve tied the best by any defensive tackle at this year’s NFL Scouting Combine, and it would’ve been better than any defensive tackle weighing 310 pounds or more in the past decade. His 6.95 3-cone time would’ve been by far the fastest among defensive tackles in Indianapolis. The fastest was 7.33. Smith’s 60-yard shuttle time is 11.90.
The Wolverines do a reactive plyo stairs test, which is a series of seven 26-inch high stairs that players attempt to jump up as fast as possible. The team record is 2.21 seconds. Smith did it in 2.82. To better gauge just how impressive that is, Hutchinson, some 60 pounds lighter than Smith, did it in 2.57.
Check it out:
How freaky is Michigan DT Mazi Smith?
This is the Wolverines' reactive plyo stairs test.
— The Athletic (@TheAthletic) August 10, 2022
Here are the other Michigan players included on the list:
7. Julius Welschof, Michigan, edge
31. DJ Turner, Michigan, cornerback
46. Kenneth Grant, Michigan, defensive tackle
In case you were wondering, Michigan State did not have a single player make this list.