The Wolverine

March 2022

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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4 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2022   FROM OUR READERS March 2022 • Vol. 33, No. 9 ISSN 1048-9940 Editor John Borton Editor Chris Balas Football Recruiting Editor EJ Holland Staff Writers Clayton Sayfie, Anthony Broome Drew Hallett, Tim Verghese Managing Editor Ryan Tice Contributing Editors Steve Downey Chris Riffer Matt Herb Layout And Design Jeanette Blankenship Chris Miller Contributing Photographers Lon Horwedel Per Kjeldsen Cover Photo EJ Holland Publisher Stu Coman Business Manager Linda Autry Circulation Manager: Sarah Boone Advertising Sales Michelle DeLee-Hamilton 877-630-8768 Customer Service Cathy Jones, Laura Thornton 800-421-7751 The Wolverine is published monthly. A one- year (12 issues) subscription is $66.99. The Wolverine is printed at The Papers in Milford, Ind. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to The Wolverine, P.O. Box 2331, Durham, NC 27702. Periodical postage paid at Durham, NC 27702 and additional offices. For advertising or subscription information, call 1-800-421-7751 or write The Wolverine, P.O. Box 2331, Durham, NC 27702. The Wolverine is a publication of Coman Publishing Company, 905 W. Main St, Suite 24F, Durham, NC 27701. E-Mail Address: Subscription questions: Website: THE MICHIGAN GOAT Dear The Wolverine, Well, the GOAT has left the field! I am, unabashedly, a Tom Brady fan. Those who have known me over the years will smile and say, "Sure, Bob likes him because he's a "Michigan Man." I became a Michigan fan (I didn't go to U-M so I can't be a "Michigan Man" — I was born and raised in Michigan so maybe that counts) on Nov. 25, 1950, when Mich- igan defeated Ohio State in the teeth of a full-scale blizzard. I have been a Michigan fan ever since for 72 years now. So, in my mind, Tom Brady deserves to be called the "GOAT" (Greatest Of All Time) in the NFL. I admire him for his work ethic and obviously for his ability to come through for his team in the clutch. But there have been other Michigan quarterbacks who have led their teams to the Rose and other bowls and competed for prestigious trophies like the Heisman. A few had successful NFL careers and one came back to coach at Michigan. If you ask which quarterback is the NFL GOAT, I agree with the experts and say Tom Brady. I am sad to see his career end, and thank him for the memories. However, if you ask me who my favor- ite Michigan quarterback is, I think you might be surprised. He led his team to the Big Ten championship and a Rose Bowl victory. He was a first-team All-Amer- ican. He received the Chicago Tribune's Silver Football trophy as the most valu- able player in the Big Ten and finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting. During his three-year career for the Wolverines, he rushed for 315 yards, passed for 1,507 yards and was respon- sible for 19 touchdowns (not very big numbers when you compare them to Brady's 5,351 yards and 35 touchdowns at Michigan). My pick also did the Wolverine punting and placekicking. He had a short and unsuccessful NFL career and became an ordained Presbyte- rian minister. He was outspoken about his Christian faith as a Wolverine player and was referred to by his teammates as "The Preacher man." He is active in Habitat for Humanity and is on the faculty of Marquette Uni- versity where he teaches courses on com- munity service and affordable housing. My choice for the GOAT quarterback at Michigan is No. 28, Bob Timberlake. Bob Zinnecker Via the internet A CHAMPIONSHIP STAFF Dear The Wolverine, Last year (January 2021 issue), I wrote a letter that Jim Harbaugh's biggest failure was the inability to put together a staff that is great in all three areas: recruiting, player development and game prep. I suggested that he bring in Mike Elston as defensive coordinator to help recruit Ohio, and fellow alums Ron Bel- lamy and Thomas Wilcher to mend re- lationships that hampered in-state re- cruiting. I stated that Michigan should be the comeback story for 2021 if Harbaugh makes the right moves. He did! We got Bellamy and did even better by getting Mike Hart as RB coach and Mike Mac- donald as DC. After all the Harbaugh NFL drama and coordinator departures, some people are saying the sky is falling. I think the 2022 staff is even better. Number one, Elston is a huge upgrade as a coach and recruiter. Josh Gattis is not a huge loss. Most savvy observers observed he ran a Har- baugh offense, and offensive assistants Sherrone Moore, Matt Weiss, Jay Har- baugh and Hart were deserving of a lot of the credit. Macdonald did great, but he benefitted from having two top-10 NFL Draft picks rushing the passer and a much improved secondary thanks to Steve Clinkscale and Bellamy. New hire Jesse Minter can keep the same system and in the long run will be better because he wants to coach in col- lege and is a willing recruiter. I have felt for years that Michigan needed a dedicated WR coach and now Bellamy is the man. Look for those wide- outs to improve exponentially under his watch. This is the best Michigan staff in mem- ory. Young, energetic and most impor- tantly great recruiters. Speaking of great staffs, The Wolverine has one with John Borton, Chris Balas and company. The addition of EJ Holland rivals any of Harbaugh's best hires. Don't let anyone poach EJ! My prediction for 2022 is that Michigan will be 11-0 heading into Columbus with a chance to repeat as Big Ten champs and a CFP participant. The D might not be as good, but the offense could be among the best in all of college football. Kevin G. Smith Orange County, Calif.

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