Hello: Brady Hoke; or Who Is Brady Hoke?

Submitted by M-Wolverine on January 12th, 2011 at 1:02 AM
This is not for those with their chicken heads, running around while holding them. Continue PANIC (though of course, comment away). This is more for those on the fence, or those who would just like some reassuring. Or maybe just hear something to cheer them up. Well, there was a lot of new today. And *SHOCK* some of it outside of MGoBlog wasn't negative! There are a lot of people, around football (not those nasty columnists) who think pretty highly of Brady Hoke. Some of that, and other tidbits, to be had in the news today.

"Most people don't know that Hoke is a great recruiter," Lemming said. "Hoke has more ties than someone like Les Miles in the Midwest. I would imagine (he) would keep Fred Jackson.
"Hoke is a disciple of Bo Schembechler, Gary Moeller and Lloyd Carr. He's a great coach. He knows what he's doing. He's a good Xs-and-Os guys. But they have to keep Fred Jackson. Jackson knows Louisiana, Texas, Mississippi and Alabama. He's probably the most respected recruiter in Houston. When I'm there the (high school) coaches all ask me how Fred's doing."

For those who thought LSU coach Les Miles would have been a better choice, Lemming questioned that, and, in the long run, Helmboldt said Hoke could be just the person for the job.
"Short-term versus long-term, Miles would have been better to salvage this recruiting year," Helmboldt said. "Long-term Hoke will do a better job than Miles as far as winning games. That's my opinion. It will just take Hoke time to get the players he needs (to win)."


Lots of player reaction- this one worth the read-

"It's awesome," Martin said of Hoke's previous coaching experience at Michigan.
"That's a great start. I think he has a good feel for what's going on here at Michigan so I'm excited about that."


"He's a Michigan man. He coached here from '95 to 2002. He (Brandon) talked to a lot of former players, former coaches, people who know him and they all said he's a great guy. He's a player's coach and he's a great pick.
He's a great fit."

Black -

"Everyone was waiting to see what the meeting was going to be about and the AD (Brandon) just came in and told us Brady Hoke was going to be our next coach. We were very excited about that when he made the announcement. Everybody got up and gave a big cheer. We've been waiting for a new coach and we've finally got one. We got a leader back.


"We know that he's a defensive guy and that just struck me right off the bat. I'm happy. From this past season, the past three, the defense hasn't been doing good and with him back on staff that gets the flavor back in on us."


"A couple of guys I know who've coached with him say he's a very terrific guy, a very genuine person," said Bielema, who was attending Tuesday's session of the American Football Coaches Association convention. "I just know he's a very good football man,

Jimmy Burrow, an assistant coach at Ohio University, was among the hundreds of coaches who were either taking in seminars Tuesday or talking with colleagues in the lobby of the Hilton Anatole Hotel.
"We used to play some crossover games," said Burrow, referring to Ohio U. and Ball State, "and our staff always felt he did a great job there.
"You could tell he had really built a nice program. And he did a great job of recruiting."


"I don't think you can find anyone better," said Steele, who had a long NFL career with the Cincinnati Bengals. "When he and Coach Carr were in charge, if you didn't play well in a particular game, you felt bad 'cause you felt as though you let them down.
"The players' reaction to him — and it's a quality that you don't see a lot of — is that he's all about coaching interaction. He's a guy who cares about his players, about them getting a degree.
"If it goes that route with Coach Hoke, it would really be a treat for Michigan," said Steele, who spoke before Hoke was formally announced as athletic director Dave Brandon's choice to succeed Rodriguez.

Former BSU AD-

"He's intelligent, and a really good defensive coach," Collins said, "and he also knows how to build a staff. And he's a terrific motivator."
Collins had one more compliment to pay Hoke — and he didn't mind if it sounded repetitive.
"I can't stress enough how good of a person he is," Collins said.


"Everybody started smiling," Koger said. "We didn't know what to do. But somebody started the slow clap and we all just followed in."
And then . . .
"Everybody got up, round of applause," said Jibreel Black, a freshman defensive end.
"Big cheer. We've been waiting for a new coach, and we've finally got one. We've got our leader back."

"I don't believe you have to be a Michigan Man," defensive tackle Will Heninger said. "But I want the best coach here. And if it's both, then you really lucked out. … "I mean, I grew up watching Charles Woodson and Steve Hutchinson and Brian Griese play, and all those guys called Dave Brandon on their own behalf and said that this is the best coach. Steve Hutchinson said this is the best coach he has ever had. So how could I argue with that?"

Asked what's next on the Wolverines' to-do list, now that they'd found a coach, Fitzgerald, for one, didn't mince words.
"Just everybody buy in," he said. "I think everybody realizes that.
"The first time (in 2007) it didn't go as well, because everybody wasn't really buying in. People were looking out for themselves a little bit. But the chemistry is real good right now. And everybody's excited, everybody's ready to get started."


"This is what he's worked his entire career to be able to do," Brandon told The News on Tuesday. "He is determined to be successful here. I've always believed you never underestimate the power of someone who has something to prove."
Al Borges is expected to come with Hoke from San Diego State where he was offensive coordinator, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported on Tuesday. Borges was at Auburn as offensive coordinator/quarterbacks coach before joining Hoke at SDSU.
Also thought to be joining Hoke from SDSU are offensive line coach Darrell Funk, running backs/recruiting coordinator Jeff Hecklinski and strength coach Aaron Wellman.

"I wasn't out looking for a toastmaster general," Brandon said. "It isn't important to me that somebody is out there with a PR machine cranking stuff out about him. I was looking for a football coach. This is not a guy who says, 'This is all about me.' Brady is, "It's all about my players."

"But the reason I wanted him to be prominent in this process was simply the combination of turning around two programs, being know as a terrific recruiter, and being a defensive-minded coached with a lot of experience. Everybody that I ever talked to just raved about the quality of person he is and how much he loves Michigan."

"The funniest thing was when somebody decided because there was an airplane with a Block M that went from Scottsdale (Ariz.) to Baton Rouge (La.) two or three days ago, and that we were having secret discussions. It was unbelievable. I was sitting in a different place in the world laughing my (butt) off. It wasn't even close to the truth."


“He’s just a very passionate, very enthusiastic guy,” former Michigan linebacker Jarrett Irons said. “I don’t think I’ve ever heard anybody say they don’t like him. He knows his stuff, too.”


WARNING: Freep material. Just a few highlights, no need to click. Link provided for fair practice:

Miles said in a brief meeting with reporters before hopping into a waiting car in Dallas. “Certainly can’t confirm it. I know his background is as a Michigan assistant. Shoot, I tried to hire him at Oklahoma State, as I recall.


Via text

• “I’m excited for Brady Hoke and even for Michigan. I’m glad this process is over and we can begin to restore the tradition and respect that was once Michigan.” -- Charles Woodson, former Michigan Heisman Trophy winner, to the AP

On Twitter

• Jon Jansen: “Coach Hoke is a great hire for Michigan. He loves Michigan and understands what it means to be a Michigan man. He’ll do a great job.”

• Rich Eisen: “Very excited to hear excitement surrounding Michigan FB again...go blue Brady Hoke!”

• Desmond Howard: “Brady Hoke will be Michigan’s next head coach! I’ve heard nothing but positive things about him since midseason.”

• Brandon Graham: “Let’s go Brady Hoke!!! I can’t wait to hear the teams slogan for next year!!”

• Jalen Rose: “Congrats to U of Michigan AD Dave Brandon & the entire football family...the hire of Brady Hoke to be HC is a great one.”

• Braylon Edwards: “I want to congratulate #BradyHoke on getting the UofM job, he coached there my 1st 2yrs, he’s a good friend of mine & a great coach”


And if you're still reading after all that, and have the time, I highly recommend checking out this:


If you couldn't tell from the link, past columns that featured him, before anyone even knew he'd ever be a candidate at Michigan; how he was thought of, and how he handled the early years at Ball State. No agenda possible with these.

Sorry for no pretty yellow boxes. It's not easy to cut and past this much in an App...



January 12th, 2011 at 3:40 PM ^

My point wasn't to hate on Hoke.  He's the guy they hired to coach and I'll support him.  My point was more that these gushing quotes on his character mean little if he doesn't win football games.  


January 12th, 2011 at 1:50 AM ^

Good read. At first I was hostile to the thought of Hoke being hired. But I also didn't know all that much about him prior. Kind of just slipped out of my mind. But after hearing all the praise and what he did for two pretty terrible programs, I'm ready to give full support for coach Hoke. Give em hell Brady!


January 12th, 2011 at 1:55 AM ^

I lifted from DGDestroys twitter, while rummaging through TomVH's: Chris Pool, ESPN Midwest recruiting blogger, tweets -
<br>"With Michigan hiring Brady Hoke, the Wolverines will be the team to beat for OL Chris Bryant (Chicago/Simeon)"
<br>Start winning before even getting on the field BH - make Denard priority 1, then lock down this recruiting class (see Jake Fisher immediately).
<br>Make today the bottom, all up from here


January 12th, 2011 at 2:00 AM ^

If he can get Bryant then awesome. His reputation is as a pretty good recruiter so I don't see why he won't be able to snag him. Shoot, maybe maybe he'll get his first jar of snake oil and wrestle Zettel away from PSU if Bradley bolts.

James Burrill Angell

January 12th, 2011 at 7:35 AM ^

I'll give Hoke-A-Mania a try too. Hopefully he can get a little momentum on his side by hanging on to Denard, holding the recruits we have and getting a victory or two on the recruiting trail. I feel bad for the amount of garbage he's taking. Would like for him to get a win or two before before we get to the season to get some momentum behind him and the fan base excited.


January 12th, 2011 at 2:23 AM ^

You scrap his record from the past. Give the guy a chance to prove himself, if there is 1 thing we took out of the RR disaster is that if the fan base is divided it will NEVER work! Was Hoke my first choice? No, but he deserves a shot. Now give him a chance to do the damn thang! Get behind the program and GO BLUE!


January 12th, 2011 at 2:35 AM ^

I wish Rich Rod did; once he go hired, everyone was in a tizzy. He had to work with a horrible first recruiting class left over from the previous regime and had crap for QBs. He was set up to lose that first year. Second year he got his QBs, and he had a decent defense. The QBs were freshman so they weren't ready for the limelight that year. Come third year; our defensive stars jump to the NFL; our QB lights on fire, and we make it to a bowl game only to have Rich Rod; right when he's finally making progress end up fired. Now we have Hoke as our coach; he gets lauded as a good coach by players who made it in the NFL. However; with his track record and how it took him years to get San Diego St to the bowl game; I wonder if he will get the due diligence that Rich Rod gets since he will be coming in with a recruitment class that isn't his; and a QB like Mallett before him, might be transferring because of the change in coaching. My head hurts over all this crap to be honest.


January 12th, 2011 at 2:41 AM ^

why in all hell that is unholy should anyone just blindly get behind hoke when you all strung rodriguez up before day 1? its bullshit to the 10th degree and i'll lead the charge against him until he and brandon are gone. half the fanbase did it for the last 3 years and now because you're all giddy with a good coach fired, you expect everyone to buy into your bullshit and conform. give me a damn break.


January 12th, 2011 at 3:47 AM ^

according to everyone here, "THIS IS MICHIGAN AND WE WOULD GET ANY COACH WE WANTED." brandon couldn't even convince 2 former players to listen to his crap before he reached for hoke. i'm not against hoke the person, i'm against hoke the coach and for good reason.


January 12th, 2011 at 9:32 AM ^

And take that argument elsewhere for me. I supported RichRod til the day he got canned. But think about it, part of the problem w/ him was that the fan base was divided on the hire so it made it extremely difficult from day 1 to turn it around. And people will say that didn't matter but it did he needed full support of confidence. So if there is something i was hoping we all learned It's to get behind the.guy and support the PROGRAM.


January 12th, 2011 at 6:52 PM ^

over the last three years that I'll refuse to do the same now.  By all accounts BH is a good man who sincerely loves his players an Michigan.  I'm willing to join other Michigan players who know the man and support him and the program.  If I could do it for hte past three years, see no reason to stop now. 


January 12th, 2011 at 2:54 AM ^

So it takes him 5 years to go anywhere with Ball State. And two years to get them to third place in their conference. Yes he got them to a bowl game; but Rich Rod also got us to a bowl game; he missed out by one game from doing it last year as well. If beating Navy, an independent school with a poweder puff schedule, is his crowning achievement. Count me out. If you don't give a good coach a chance in Rich Rod, why give Hoke a chance when his credentials are so thin.


January 12th, 2011 at 9:12 AM ^

1) If RR's record merited it, he'd still be here. Stop blaming everything else and get over it.

2) Read Demens' comments. The players knew it wasn't working. Demens is one guy but it's hard to imagine he's the only guy that spent his fall chasing offensive juggernauts like Indiana and Illinois and Penn State up and down the field and thought, "man, if only we had Jeff Casteel..."


January 12th, 2011 at 2:27 AM ^

This really has me in a positive mood. I think we learned an unfortunate lesson from the previous regime and that is that we cannot be divided as a fan base.

United we Stand. Divided we Fall.

If Hoke is our coach, then I look forward to being all in for Michigan with him leading us out!


January 12th, 2011 at 2:28 AM ^

nice work putting this together.

now that the drama is over, i'm looking forward to seeing how the rest of this transition develops. the guy is growing on me as i learn more about him, and i sincerely hope he does well.


January 12th, 2011 at 2:51 AM ^

That was encouraging.  I'm glad he's likable and the alumni are behind him, because he's gonna need the help.  This is a very high risk hire. 

I keep hearing that Hoke is a "defensive minded" coach, but looking at his teams reveals that prior to this year, none had a better than average D-I defense.  Here are the Total Defense rankings of his 8 teams:

2003 - Ball State - 71st
2004 - Ball State - 112th
2005 - Ball State - 111th
2006 - Ball State - 115th
2007 - Ball State - 96th
2008 - Ball State - 69th
2009 - SDSU - 74th
2010 - SDSU - 44th

I know these were not top tier programs, but that is eyebrow raising.  Looks to me like the guy has succeeded more with offense than anything (Ball State's Total Offense was 17th in 2008;  SDSU's finished 16th this season).

I'm also not buying into the "he turned around Ball State" meme.  Ball State's SOS in 2008 was 125th.  They had the easiest schedule in I-A.  With the exception of Navy, Central and Western Michigan,  every team they beat had a losing record and a Sagarin rating of 96th or lower (many of them MUCH lower).  Then they got killed by Buffalo and Tulsa.  They didn't play a single ranked team all season and the only AQ opponent was 3-9 Indiana.  They had a nice season, but let's not go crazy; In 2008 Ball State was a "pretty good" MAC team, nothing more.    

I really don't mean to blow up your optimistic thread.  I like rooting for the underdog, and I'll be in Hoke's corner.  But this really is the shakiest hire I can remember at a top tier program.     


January 12th, 2011 at 8:49 AM ^

It probably means he's been fired for 3 years. No one is saying give him more of a chance than Rich. Just give him "A" chance. In actuality, outside of some in the media and a few ex-players, the vast majority gave Rich a chance, till he started losing. Enough of a chance? That's certainly a fair debate. But the idea that EVERYONE was out to get him wasn't the case.

Big Boutros

January 12th, 2011 at 2:45 AM ^

I'm just pumped for all the awful puns

Like if we win the Notre Dame Inaugural Night James on a last second field goal I fully expect


and maybe if Denard sticks around and has a scintillating Heisman-worthy campaign capped off by a B1G Championship Game shellacking


maybe if he wins the Rose Bowl and the players hoist him jubilantly upon their shoulders


and let's say he somehow puts together a respectable recruiting class before Signing Day


Ultimate Quizmaster

January 12th, 2011 at 2:48 AM ^

Whoa whoa, he's bringing his RB coach and Strength guy? I'd like to keep Fred Jackson and Mike Barwis please. Jackson has a good reputation in the southern states and Barwis has an entire weight room formatted to his standards. Let's not mess with that.


January 12th, 2011 at 3:16 AM ^


This blog has been really disappointing over the last couple days. For the record, I REALLY wanted Harbaugh, dreamed of Gruden, and was meh with Miles, but I really like this hire. No, that shouldn’t matter to you, but just expressing an opinion.  It’s clear the former players, and coaches and most importantly from recent reports, the players are really excited, too!  I haven’t seen anyone bring this up yet, but Hoke is the same coach that gave us quite a scare in 2006 when we played Ball State as the undefeated #2 team in the country. You could argue that we took the foot off the gas towards the end or were looking ahead, but the disparity in talent between Michigan’s second string guys that year playing at the end of the game and BSU’s was probably made up for with the coaching of… Brady Hoke, and it was a very exciting/unnerving game as they were close to coming back. 


Some of you will cherry pick stats with his record (I think I saw he is 1-17 vs. aq schools). No, that is not remotely impressive, but you picked the one number that is really hard to overcome being the coach of a MAC/MWC school. Talent tends to naturally be better at aqs than the non aqs.  It’s known that many athletes will forgo scholarships to these schools to walk on a team in a prestigious conference like the Big Ten.  Take away the difference in talent and he is 46-33 against similar opposition (thanks to OP in “Hokes Record”).  That’s not a bad record imho (shock! Similar to JH at Stanford).  So let’s see what this guy can do with talent that naturally wants to play at Michigan because it’s a Big Ten program and not just for being “Michigan”. I can just as easily say he will succeed as you guys can say he won’t, but I won’t make grand declarations like that.  Hoke is now our football coach and that makes him OUR Michigan Man, so we must support him.