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Shea Patterson’s return a ‘big lift’ for Michigan

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh is excited that he will have quarterback Shea Patterson at his disposal for one more season.

Harbaugh, who met with reporters this week as the Wolverines kick off preparations for the Peach Bowl against Florida, discussed Patterson’s return and the importance of the Wolverines having a good week this week. Not only would a victory over the Gators propel U-M to 11 wins on the season, it also builds positive momentum heading into next season with some pieces of the team needing to change during the offseason.

“It’s a big lift. We are excited about it,” Harbaugh told reporters this week. “We have a lot of really good players coming back next year. A lot of good people. A lot of good players and coaches that will be returning next year. You want to win this game for this team and for this season, knowing that it will change. There will be some players who are on the team right now who won’t be back next year. A lot of them will. A lot of good ones. We want to start building momentum for next year.”

Patterson took to his Twitter account this week to make the news official.

“There is absolutely nothing like playing in the Big House in front of the greatest fans in the country,” Patterson wrote. “I wouldn’t trade those Saturdays competing with my brothers for anything. Can’t wait to play with the seniors one last team in the Peach Bowl! I also want to welcome and congratulate the new signing class — come in ready to work because we are coming for everything next season.. Go Blue.”

Patterson finished the 2018 regular season with 2,364 yards passing, 21 touchdowns and five interceptions. He also added 268 yards and two touchdowns on the ground to his tally as well.

Harbaugh also shared his enthusiasm for his quarterback’s work ethic and leadership during his Peach Bowl press conference. Saying that his focus during practice is able to propel his play in games, which is also a major contributing factor as to why the U-M offense saw major strides in every facet this season.

“He’s been great at getting better at everything. He’s an ascending player,” Harbaugh said. “It’s just everything you ask him to do, he’s got the athletic ability to go out and do it. He’s really serious about being good. He’s so focused at practice and he’s the type of player that you can give a coaching point to and he gets it and practices and improves on it.”

Patterson, who shot down NFL Draft talk earlier this month, is 100 percent focused on the Gators.

“I’ve had the most fun ever in my football career, so far, suiting up here at Michigan,” Patterson said. “It’s been such an honor to do it. I think there’s a lot more to be done. Like I said, I’m just excited to get one more win and possibly finish in the top five of the country. That would be pretty big for us. We’ll discuss further down the road with Coach Harbaugh and my family.”

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