Michigan WR Ronnie Bell will leave for the NFL following 2022 season: Jim Harbaugh

Michigan WR Ronnie Bell will leave for the NFL following 2022 season: Jim Harbaugh

ANN ARBOR, Mich. —Michigan football WR Ronnie Bell will start the program for the NFL following the 2022 season, Jim Harbaugh said Monday evening.

Speaking on the “Inside Michigan Football” radio show, Harbaugh confirmed Bell has received his Senior Bowl invite and plans to continue his career in the pros after the year ends.

“He’s gonna go into the NFL next year,” Harbaugh said. “He’s already got a Senior Bowl invite. He’s having a tremendous, tremendous season. It’s another feel-good story.”

Bell, a captain, leads the Wolverines with 45 receptions for 597 yards this season. He has been with the UM program for five years and could have extended his stay in Ann Arbor for a sixth.

A lightly recruited prospect from Kansas City, Bell blossomed at Michigan. He appeared in all 13 games as a true freshman in 2018, then started 10 games in 2019, when he led the team in receptions and yards. He was again Michigan’s top receiver in the shortened 2020 campaign.

In 2021, Bell was voted a captain by his teammates ahead of what promised to be another excellent season. But he played less than half of Michigan’s opener before suffering a season-ending ACL injury.

Bell rehabbed and returned to the Big House for the 2022 season—still a captain and leader of the receiver room.

“It’s just an honor, man,” Bell said in August of being a team captain. “It’s funny because this year, I knew I was going up, but still, once I got up there, that room means so much to me. It’s hard to even get words out sometimes with those guys, man. It’s a huge honour.”

Harbaugh on Monday recounted the recruiting process that resulted with Bell in Ann Arbor:

As you know, he didn’t have a football scholarship. When he was coming out of high school, he was going to play basketball. My brother-in-law, Jimmy Cain told me about him. I said, ‘Hey are there any good football players in Kansas City?’ Said, ‘Uh, yeah — Ronnie Bell. He’s really good.’

I looked him up: No scholarship offers. Watched his tape and yeah, I really like this guy. But no no offers. I figured he didn’t have grades, but then it turned out he was like a 3.1. Well, he must have committed some kind of crime or something. Nope. A young gentleman.

He’s been great. It’s almost a tip of the cap to the ’21 offense that they were as good as they were without Ronnie Bell.

Roman Wilson, Cornelius Johnson and Andrel Anthony are among the Michigan receivers with remaining eligibility following the 2022 season.


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