Hoke: Williams and Avery back, Gardner gets encouragement from Manziel

Hoke: Williams and Avery back, Gardner gets encouragement from Manziel

Submitted by dnak438 on September 18th, 2013 at 12:18 PM

Hoke: A.J. Williams and Courtney Avery are back

— Michigan Football (@umichfootball) September 18, 2013


Gardner: Johnny Manziel sent me a text after the game telling me to keep my head up

— Michigan Football (@umichfootball) September 18, 2013

I'm not sure how much to read into this:

Hoke on if same starting five OL will start Saturday "I don't know yet. We'll see what happens"

— angelique (@chengelis) September 18, 2013

Courtney Avery out 2 weeks Arthroscopic Knee Surgery

Courtney Avery out 2 weeks Arthroscopic Knee Surgery

Submitted by TheDirtyD on August 26th, 2013 at 2:12 PM

Coach Brady Hoke announced Monday that senior defensive back Courtney Avery will miss two weeks after receiving arthroscopic knee surgery on Saturday.

Hoke said the procedure was done to clean up some cartilage in Avery's knee, and noted that the senior is in good spirits and will "be back soon."

With Avery on the shelf, sophomore Jarrod Wilson will get the nod at free safety. Blake Countess and Raymon Taylor will be the team's starting corners.





UPDATE:Avery, who was on the verge of becoming the team's starting free safety, was asked specifically if he'd be back for the Notre Dame game on Sept. 7. But right now, he's not sure.

"I hope to get back as soon as possible," he said.


Avery Quotes

Courtney Avery - George Jewett Kinship

Courtney Avery - George Jewett Kinship

Submitted by Everyone Murders on October 5th, 2012 at 9:06 AM

Angelique Chengelis has an article in today's Detroit News regarding the kinship of Courtney Avery and Michigan legend George Jewett.  Link: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20121005/SPORTS0201/210050350/Michigan-s-Courtney-Avery-proud-relation-history-making-Wolverine?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|Sports

I'd been ignorant of Jewett's legacy until I saw an article in March's Michigan Today.  The article (http://michigantoday.umich.edu/story.php?id=8143) is well worth your time to read, as Jewett's legacy is impressive.  Michigan would not have another african-american player until the legendary Willis Ward. I cannot recommend the article highly enough if you're unaware of Jewett's story.

Jewett - 1892

Jewett's father was an Ann Arbor blacksmith.  Not only was Jewett Michigan's (and the B1G's) first african-american player (1890!), but he was a renaissance man and powerful business presence in Ann Arbor after graduation.  He was also Ann Arbor High School's 1889 valedictorian.  He played for the Wolverines in 1890 and 1892, later transferring to Northwestern to become their first african-american player too.  (The transfer was motivated, according to Wikipedia, due to a dispute with Michigan's Medical School dean.)

Per Chengelis, Avery did not know of his relationship to Jewett until he arrived on campus.  It's a wonderful bit of history, and with all the talk of "Legacy" jerseys I doubt Avery would trade his legacy for any teammate's.

Michigan football players in a team photo from 1890

DRob, CAvery, MRob Participate in Youth Football Camp, Comment on OSU

DRob, CAvery, MRob Participate in Youth Football Camp, Comment on OSU

Submitted by MGoShoe on July 10th, 2011 at 9:17 AM

Yesterday, Denard Robinson, Marvin Robinson, Courtney Avery plus two unnamed Michigan players participated as counselors at the All-American Youth Football Camp, run by Lexington High School head coach B.J. Payne and his staff. Lexington is Avery's alma mater.

Similar, but not identical Gannett stories here and here.


Giving up those 12 victories does not mean each victim adds a notch to the win column. Even if it did, Robinson does not want to beat the Buckeyes and end a seven-game - check that, six-game - losing streak in the storied series that way. It would be a huge mistake to even suggest it.

"C'mon man," said Robinson, grimacing as if someone had told him to tie his shoes. "Who really wants to take a win like that?"

"You want to play a team when they're at the top, not the bottom," Robinson said. "These (OSU) guys (at the youth camp) say they're going to be at their best. They're working hard, so that's a good thing."


"You can't control what can happen," Avery said, advising OSU players not to let the slow-turning wheels of NCAA justice serve as a distraction. "If you can't control it, you can't worry about it. Whatever happens is going to happen anyway."

"You don't really want to start looking at what's happening in other places; you have to worry about where you want to be as a player," Avery said. "We've got to concentrate on what we can control (at Michigan), and right now what we can control is getting better in the offseason."

Marvin Robinson:

"We wish the best for those guys," Marvin Robinson said. "They've got great talent on their team. I enjoy playing them; it's a great rivalry. We just hope to keep it how it used to be - a great rivalry, a great game."

Five OSU players including quarterback Kenny Guiton, running backs Jordan Hall and Jaamal Berry, and defensive lineman Dalton Britt were also in attendance but were not permitted to speak to the media.

Tackling Technique: Spring Is In The Air.

Tackling Technique: Spring Is In The Air.

Submitted by maizedandconfused on June 16th, 2011 at 12:32 PM

So the coaching change.

This off-season has had two main points of contention.

  1. Whether or not Denard can still Denard people under center and in the pocket
  2. Whether Mattison will turn our ramshackle defense of 2010 into a warrior manbear.

I tend to focus on the defense [insert joke of how watching tape time and again of last year's defense is akin to watching a sport about kicking puppies] and in that regard I feel that it was folly to look at our defense last year as a whole, mostly because we were so small. So I look at tackling technique.

For the season in review from last year, you can look here [Ed-M: or for you Sparknoters, here's a picture:


That is an incredibly depressing starting point. Can it improve? Has it already? Let's head down to the spring game from this year, with the same equations as before:

Tackling Efficiency = (Made tackles – Missed Tackles) / (Bad Form Tackles + 1)

  • Bad form tackles account for terrible form (bad angles, too high, getting shook etc)

Tackling % =  Made tackles  / Made + Missed

And Hope. We tackled. Well at times even. Against a prolific offense (I will assume a 75% production level from last year which still makes it a prolific offense).

Now to the comparison. Included are season averages for any returning players I  had reliable numbers on.

Spring Game in Blue and 2010 Season in Red

Tackling Efficiency.

Tackling Percentage.


  • This is one small data set to derive from. Our offense was still learning the system and we probably had not instituted a lot of coverage packages or blitz packages
  • That being said, you can easily see improvement in technique and ability. We came in in good form, and more often than not made the tackle.
  • If Jake Ryan can produce at that level against our 1s, he should start over Cam Gordon. That kid was absolutely everywhere. My best takeaway message from this was that sending him off the edge on a blitz was a matchup problem if he was being blocked by a [Ed-M: 3rd string] TE or even a T. He was good in coverage, and filled holes on the run. I cannot stress enough how impressed I was by his play.
  • I don’t think Kovacs had a very good day. I can’t say at this point that I would rather have Marvin Robinson start, but based on the fact that he provided minimal run support here and little coverage support last year, I think his athleticism, or lack thereof, might be a net negative if he's in a starting role. However tackling hasn't been a problem for him before, so a platoon role with Robinson inside the M 30 might make use of his strengths without exposing his weaknesses so much, provided that...
  • Marvin Robinson is a good football player. He might have made a bad read on that long TD, but he was there in coverage and made some nice plays on run support. I would like to see him spell Kovacs in lesser games to build confidence and play reading ability.
  • I am REALLY excited about Richard Ash. Had good hands and solid footwork coming off the edge and held up against single teams.
  • Marell Evans is a solid option. I'm interested to see how the fall competition between him and Demens plays out. I also don’t know who our starting LBs will be, as Ryan, Jones, Gordon, Demens, and Evans all have upside... finally some depth.
  • Will Campbell was Will Campbell. Made some good plays, and just didn’t get moved some plays. I feel like he still loses aggression every so often, but if he finds out how to turn it on every play he can be a manbeast.
  • Carvin Johnson is [metaphorically a male horse used for breeding]. Enough said.
  • I did not notice Mike Martin too often, which is good and bad. Jibreel Black might be the player I'm most excited to watch develop this year. He is going to be a MONSTER.
  • Finally, Courtney Avery will be a starter come September. Good coverage, good run support. Also, I liked Greg Brown.

Picture Pages: Wheels of doom (updated)

Picture Pages: Wheels of doom (updated)

Submitted by dnak438 on November 11th, 2010 at 10:34 AM

Updated to include both wheel route plays.

WHEEL OF DOOM #1 (1st play of 4th quarter):

Sharik has broken down the mistake on the first wheel route, but I thought that it might be worth picture paging.  I used the video so generously provided by Boyz in da Pahokee.  Here is what it looks like pre-snap; the Michigan defenders are settling in after some initial confusion about where they should be aligned:

Wheel of doom 1 - 1

You can see that Michigan is in a 3-deep look, with four players rushing the passer and four underneath zone defenders -- that is, a standard 3 deep zone.  Brian in the UFR calls Michigan's formation 4-3 light.  Illinois' formation is Shotgun 2-back twins.

Here we are, immediately post-snap.  There is a run fake to the RB on the far side of the field, Troy Pollard (I think).  The Illinois LG is pulling to the right to provide protection to Sheelhaase when he rolls to the right.  Both receivers get a clean release and will run post routes, clearing out the near side of the field for the wheel route.  LeShoure will run the wheel route, Pollard will go into the flat to keep the short defender honest.

We have to use ESPN's cameras, so it is hard to see what has happened, but the three deep has totally broken down.  Rogers and Vinopal (the latter is barely visible at the top of the photo above), have both followed the slot receiver to the far side of the field, presumably because Sheelhaase has rolled to that side.  

Avery, meanwhile, has taken the outside receiver into the center of the field.  T. Gordon doesn't stay with LeShoure, presumably because he sees Pollard in the flat.  The result is that LeShoure is wide open.

In the UFR, Brian writes:

Who's responsibility is this? I'm not sure anyone's except GERG. T. Gordon does not know to carry the running back vertical. If he does the other running back will be vastly open in the flat because Demens is bugging out for the deep middle. Avery's going with the post, as is Vinopal, and Rogers is covering no one on the far side of the field. So... who and what can Michigan do to make no obvious touchdowns on this play? Don't know. T. Gordon -2, Cover -3, RPS -3.

My football knowledge is minimal, but I think that Avery needs to stay in his deep third on the near side of the field, Vinopal needs to take the outside receiver into the center and Rogers the slot receiver to the far side of the field.  Rogers plays this well, so I conclude that the fault lies with the true freshmen, Vinopal and Avery, for not maintaining their responsibilities.

Sharik concludes that this is on T. Gordon for not picking up LeShoure, but if he does this, then Pollard is wide open.  If Avery maintains his position, however, every receiver will be covered.

WHEEL OF DOOM #2 (1st play of 2nd overtime):

Sharik says the following about this play:

On the 2nd one (in the 2nd OT), we were bringing 6 with 3-deep, 2-under behind it.  When you bring 6 and play zone behind it, you can't zone the flat, let alone a wheel route.  When you bring 6, whether it be man or zone behind it, the contain rusher must either hug up a releasing back or peel and cover him.  Therefore, it was the blitzing safety's responsibility.

Here is the setup:

So, Illinois is in the same formation, two backs and two receivers on the same size of the field.  Michigan is again in a 3-deep look, again with four down linemen.

Immediately after the snap.  This play is very similar to Wheel of Doom #1.  There is run action to Jason Ford (#21), who was lined up to Sheelhaase's right.  The inside receiver is running a post, the outside receiver is running a 15-yard in.  Leshoure is running a wheel route, and Ford is drifting into the flat.  You can see the Michigan CBs and FS going into a 3-deep look.  We are actually only bringing 5 (not 6): Kovacs is blitzing off the short side of the field.

Same mistake as Wheel of Doom #1: Avery (red arrow) is following the inside receiver who is running a post, leaving vast amounts of green behind him.  Mouton is on the 13 yard line, stopping the in route of the outside receiver.

The result is a very grainy TD.

So Sharik may be right about the blitzing safety needing to pick up the RB, but it doesn't look like Kovacs is aware of this at all.  Even if that is so, I don't think that Avery can follow the post route here, since that's Vinopal's responsibility.  So the cause and the result of Wheel of doom #2 is substantially the same as #1.

Players that stepped up

Players that stepped up

Submitted by Bringitback2a2 on November 7th, 2010 at 12:28 PM

Who did you notice as a player who stepped up on Saturday? i think we saw a lot of players really take a huge leap. The player i noticed most was Courtney Avery. That kid played his ass off. Granted he got beat for a touchdown but he was in pretty good position. I also loved his open field tackle where he flipped the guy. Big props for all those freshman DB's who are way over matched but give it their all every play. Go Blue!!!!