Michigan’s offensive line, already an inexperienced unit, took a big hit this week.

Brian Merlos
Michigan football coach Rich Rodriguez instructs players during spring practice. He confirmed yesterday that junior Justin Boren was no longer on the team. (SAID ALSALAH/Daily)

Junior Justin Boren left the Wolverine football team Monday, leaving the offensive line with just one returning starter (redshirt sophomore Stephen Schilling). Boren was expected to start at left guard or center. He started every game last year, splitting time between the two positions, and earned an All-Big Ten honorable mention.

Rumors about Boren’s departure have swirled the last couple of days. The first question Michigan coach Rodriguez faced yesterday at a press conference was whether he had any personnel situations to talk about. In response, he gave a brief rundown of quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers and tight ends.

When asked specifically about attrition, Rodriguez admitted Boren had left the team, but didn’t offer many details. As expected, Rodriguez deflected specific questions about Boren.

“I only talk about the guys that play for Michigan,” Rodriguez said. “I sound like a broken record there, don’t I?”

Boren didn’t immediately return an e-mail seeking comment.

But he spoke to the media after the Wolverines’ first spring practice March 15. He said the new coaching staff and its “screaming and yelling” was different than the previous staff, but the team would get used to it.

Boren also spoke about the difficulties of learning a new system, especially one that required offensive lineman sprinting to the line to run a no-huddle offense. He was asked whether he was still having fun.

“It’s still football,” Boren said. “Football’s not going to change. It’s just going to take a while to get used to. Get used to the coaches, get used to the system and get used to the whole atmosphere.”

Another potential explanation may have been the Wolverines’ new and notoriously strenuous training regimen under Mike Barwis, director of strength and conditioning.

“Coach Barwis, as far as I’m concerned, is the best in the business,” Boren said after that first practice.

Rodriguez said this wasn’t a case of a player losing his love for the game.

Boren was Scout.com’s 42nd-overall prospect (five stars) in the class of 2006. Competing recruiting site Rivals.com rated him 64th and gave him four stars. It take didn’t long for Boren to show that talent on the field. Boren was the first offensive lineman since at least 2003 not to redshirt his freshman year.

“Each year you’ve got to come together,” Boren said after the first spring practice. “I think this year might be a little more difficult.”

Notes: Rodriguez said no other player has left the team during the spring. . He plans to hold the spring game April 12 at Saline High School. The offense will play the defense, and the teams will get points for accomplishments like yardage, sacks and turnovers.

– Nate Sandals contributed to this reportBy Dan Feldman

Daily Sports Editor

Junior Justin Boren left the Wolverine football team Monday, leaving the offensive line with just one returning starter (redshirt sophomore Stephen Schilling). Boren was expected to start at left guard or center. He started every game last year, splitting time between the two positions, and earned an All-Big Ten honorable mention.

Rumors about Boren’s departure have swirled the last couple of days. The first question Michigan coach Rodriguez faced yesterday at a press conference was whether he had any personnel situations to talk about. In response, he gave a brief rundown of quarterbacks, running backs, wide receivers and tight ends.

When asked specifically about attrition, Rodriguez admitted Boren had left the team, but didn’t offer many details. As expected, Rodriguez deflected specific questions about Boren.

“I only talk about the guys that play for Michigan,” Rodriguez said. “I sound like a broken record there, don’t I?”

Boren didn’t immediately return an e-mail seeking comment.

But he spoke to the media after the Wolverines’ first spring practice March 15. He said the new coaching staff and its “screaming and yelling” was different than the previous staff, but the team would get used to it.

Boren also spoke about the difficulties of learning a new system, especially one that required offensive lineman sprinting to the line to run a no-huddle offense. He was asked whether he was still having fun.

“It’s still football,” Boren said. “Football’s not going to change. It’s just going to take a while to get used to. Get used to the coaches, get used to the system and get used to the whole atmosphere.”

Another potential explanation may have been the Wolverines’ new and notoriously strenuous training regimen under Mike Barwis, director of strength and conditioning.

“Coach Barwis, as far as I’m concerned, is the best in the business,” Boren said after that first practice.

Rodriguez said this wasn’t a case of a player losing his love for the game.

Boren was Scout.com’s 42nd-overall prospect (five stars) in the class of 2006. Competing recruiting site Rivals.com rated him 64th and gave him four stars. It take didn’t long for Boren to show that talent on the field. Boren was the first offensive lineman since at least 2003 not to redshirt his freshman year.

“Each year you’ve got to come together,” Boren said after the first spring practice. “I think this year might be a little more difficult.”

Notes: Rodriguez said no other player has left the team during the spring. . He plans to hold the spring game April 12 at Saline High School. The offense will play the defense, and the teams will get points for accomplishments like yardage, sacks and turnovers.

Nate Sandals contributed to this report

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