The Wolverine

February 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 31 of 75

32 THE WOLVERINE FEBRUARY 2018   MICHIGAN FOOTBALL Going to Michigan would be a mu- tually beneficial thing for both par- ties in Anderson's mind. He plans to officially visit U-M Jan. 26-28, and has already visited Texas. "I want to get out there and see what's in Ann Arbor," he said. Anderson wants to have a decision by his birthday, which is March 25, while U-M hopes he will make it on or around National Signing Day on Feb. 7 but is understanding of his situation. While noting it was too early to name a leader in mid-January, Michi- gan is very clearly near the top, An- derson said. "It's exciting to think about having the opportunity to play some really big-time football and some key games next year," he said. "Obviously, the addition of [Ole Miss transfer quar- terback] Shea Patterson is huge. "Michigan football looks very promising in 2018 and 2019. It's ex- citing to think that I can be that miss- ing piece." Anderson is also considering Notre Dame, Texas, Pittsburgh, TCU, Au- burn, Oklahoma, Duke, Purdue, Louisville, Vanderbilt, Tennessee and West Virginia. He's now 6-5 and 300 pounds, ac- cording to Rice's website. "I'm serious about going to the next level, so having reservations about playing better competition would be the opposite of someone in my position," Anderson said. "I'm excited about playing better compe- tition and getting to showcase my talents more." — Andrew Vailliencourt DON BROWN SEES A FEW AREAS FOR IMPROVEMENT Michigan's defense finished among the best in the nation in a number of categories in the regular season, in- cluding passing yards allowed per game (150.1, first) and pass efficiency defense (103.71, fourth). Defensive coordinator Don Brown was pleased with many aspects of his group, but if there was an area that needed im- provement, he said, it was in stop- ping the run. "That's the biggest thing for me this year. We were [18th] against the run [at 120.9 yards allowed per game]," he explained. "That's not good enough, in my opinion. We needed to be better. The Penn State game [a 42-13 loss], we needed to be better. If I had the same pieces in that I did a couple of the later games, we would have been in much better shape in that game. Whose fault is that? Mine. Not the players. Put it on my shoulders. I'm a big boy. "In my opinion, we need to be in the top five or six against the run. How do you do that? Well, we got over 400 yards of lost yardage there, a good chunk against the run. That really helps the run defense, kind of unlocks the door. That's why we're in search of sacks, plays on their side of the line of scrimmage. Instead of third-and-three or four, we want third-and-eight or nine. That's a re- ally big difference now." Turnovers could help the cause as well, he added. The Wolverines tied for 81st in the country this year with 17 takeaways, and were only tied for 72nd in fumbles recovered (seven) and 67th in interceptions (10). Playing aggressive man-to-man defense as much as Michigan does makes it tougher to pick balls off, Brown noted. "I don't know what else we can do," he said. "By trade, we're not go- ing to have a lot of interceptions be- cause we're in man coverage, batting balls down. Now, we're unbelievable in pass breakups. That's an area we do a really good job in. "By nature, it's what do you want to be philosophically? If you're a big zone guy, you're going to give up more yards. … I'm just saying, that's what you're going to do. You're go- ing to trade off and have more inter- ceptions." As for the fumbles … "We're out here working on strip- ping … all the drills, and sometimes we've had the ball on the ground some," he explained. "We just haven't been able to capitalize. But it is a little disappointing. "We've got to go back to draw- ing board on it and figure the whole thing out." — Chris Balas CHASE WINOVICH, TEAMMATES RAISE MONEY FOR CHADTOUGH What started out as a nice little idea from Chase Winovich turned into a windfall of money to support a great cause. Michigan's redshirt ju- nior defensive end promised before the Outback Bowl he'd dye his hair orange for the game if he could raise $15,000 (he chose 15 to match his jersey number) for the ChadTough Foundation. Chad Carr, who passed away at 5 years old of a brain tumor, was a fan of the color orange. Tammi Carr and Jason Carr, son of former Michigan head coach Lloyd Carr, started the ChadTough foundation for research to help find a cure for the currently inoperable brain tumor called Dif- fuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG). More than 2,750 contributors do- nated $211,000-plus to the foundation, which was matched by Michigan Re- gent Ron Weiser. He vowed to match donations up to $1 million, fueled by promises from tackle Grant New- some, defensive tackle Maurice Hurst, linebacker Devin Bush, safety Josh Metellus, defensive coordinator Don Brown and others to dye their hair, as well (in Brown's case, his mustache). Donations were still rolling in on CrowdRise. com, but as of Jan. 18, redshirt junior defen- sive end Chase Winovich and his team- mates dying their hair orange helped raise more than $211,000 for the ChadTough Foundation, which would be donated to the Pediatric Brain Tumor Research Initiative at Michigan Medicine. PHOTO COURTESY WINOVICH

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of The Wolverine - February 2018