Mike Martin contrasts Mattison and G. Robinson

Submitted by Franz Schubert on April 22nd, 2012 at 2:51 PM

"There's just no way I'd have the same kind of respect if it weren't for him," Martin told AnnArbor.com during a recent interview. "We were playing backyard defense (under former defensive coordinator Greg Robinson), pretty much. Just going out, picking a gap and just kind of doing whatever we wanted to do. It was a lot different."





April 23rd, 2012 at 3:37 AM ^

No, he's right. "Compare" is ambiguous. It can include contrasts. Think of comparatives in grammar. Clearly, when you say something is "more expensive" than something else, you aren't talking about how they're the same. But it can just be for finding similarities. "Compare and contrast" just makes things explicit, especially for dumb freshmen. If there's one thing I learned being a TA and having my own course in graduate school, it's that you have to be more explicit with assignments and instructions than you'd think. Kids will find a way to be lazy or ignorant.

Alf Urkel

April 22nd, 2012 at 3:07 PM ^

I suppose I'll be the first one to actually talk about the content of the post, rather than the semantics of the title. 


/boom random'd

/overusing slash meme

/not fiving a frick

/afraid to swear

/don't want to get in trouble

/why do people do this



April 22nd, 2012 at 3:08 PM ^

The article shows just how bad things were on defense: perhaps worse than most of us thought.  Position coaches who didn't know what they were doing, and a head coach with not much interest in the defense pretty much set up the DC and the whole defense up for failure.


April 22nd, 2012 at 3:13 PM ^

Seriously, what the hell was Gerg doing while he was here? Did he show up to practice drunk/hungover all the time?  He sure as hell wasn't teaching anybody.


April 22nd, 2012 at 3:34 PM ^

"We were playing backyard defense, pretty much. Just going out, picking a gap and just kind of doing whatever we wanted to do. It was a lot different." - Mike Martin, in the article

That's a pretty  telling indictment which would support your last statement - if this is the case, there wasn't much teaching going on. That is an absolute shame really and a  disservice to talented players, considering the person not doing the teaching spent ten years in the NFL and was part of two Broncos Super Bowl teams. I am pretty sure Robinson knew that the hands-off approach wouldn't fly in the NFL. 

Anyway, the other telling indictment:

"He's torn my game down to the bare bones, and built it back up," Martin said. "I've benefited hugely from him, both in what these (scouts) think of me, but also in how I play the game" - Martin,  regarding Mattison

He was taught in his last  year by someone who cared deeply about player development, and it has made a world of difference to him personally, which is the most important takeaway from this story, in my opinion. 



April 22nd, 2012 at 6:27 PM ^

IMO the most important part of the story is that neither side of the ball can be completely ignored. I am not worried about that for defense going forward. I do think Al Borges is a good coordinator but Hoke probably shouldn't ignore them like RichRod apparently did the defense. I trust Hoke and think he is a great ambassador for the program and has gotten amazing results. It's just that he's said he is a defensive minded coach.

I think it is a rare thing when all sides of the ball are dominant but the demphasized sides of the ball (and there has to be given time and practice constraints) should still be serviceable. The recruiting for offense is looking great so I'm hoping this shouldn't be an issue.

Glad everything is working out for Mike Martin who really does look like the Hulk and that Barwis is still helping out his former players.


April 22nd, 2012 at 8:27 PM ^

If RR doesn't know how to run a defense, meddling wouldn't help. Meddling actually seemed to make it worse. I think the CEO hands-off head coach thing can work, but you need great coordinators. Gerg is not a great coordinator. RR keeping all his position coaches and not letting his D coordinator pick his own team also hurt I think.

Mr Miggle

April 22nd, 2012 at 7:34 PM ^

But what do we make of this Sporting News article that came out today? While it's obvious that UM's defense was much improved by Mattison, it doesn't look like Martin's NFL prospects were hurt by the old regime.

"During his junior season, Michigan defensive tackle Mike Martin was viewed as a likely second- or third-round pick. However, after a less than stellar 2011 senior season, he tumbled down draft boards and was viewed as a likely fifth- or sixth-rounder. But after an outstanding Senior Bowl and a strong pro day in which he displayed competitiveness, strength and solid athleticism, he began to move back up draft boards.

NFL sources tell us that in draft meetings, coaches have pushed Martin up their boards for reasons other than his physical talent. That is, they are quite impressed with his character, intangibles and performance during interviews. We would not be surprised to hear his name called in the second or third round."

Read more: http://aol.sportingnews.com/nfl/story/2012-04-21/nfl-draft-dish-devon-still-brandon-boykin-jayron-hosley-darius-fleming-jeremy-jo#ixzz1soZdglDl

Coastal Elite

April 22nd, 2012 at 3:22 PM ^

I know that this controversy has been beaten to death - and then beaten some more - on this board, but a quote like this just demonstrates to me that at the end of the day, Freep aside, Lloyd Carr aside, stretchgate and "Michigan Man" and whatever else notwithstanding, RichRod was a woefully incomplete head coach who did not deserve to be retained at this program.


April 22nd, 2012 at 3:37 PM ^

A mistake was made in hiring RR, but I think it was RR that made the mistake in his acceptance of the job. You somehow summarily dismiss all relevant data exacerbating the reasons for his failure. That is just unfair to the man. He had no idea how divided the fan base was going to be at the mere suggestion of changing the perceived "Michigan way," even though LC had taken the last three years off until his hiring. Only then did he act and that was in a subversive manner.

Now watch Urban at OSU, taking over a team with roughly 80 percent of the talent he needs. His only primary weakness for his chosen way to success is lack of depth at WR, and I don't look for that to be too large of a problem after watching OSU's spring game.

But the question itself is constrasting DCs. One was absent but not awol. The other is proof that regardless of age, one becomes much better the longer he's in the game and open to learning new tactics and principles. Mattison's performance in 2011 far surpassed anything he had done here in his prior role in the same position. It's nice to have a man that is willing to implement all the new tricks he's added to his game since he's been gone.

Section 1

April 22nd, 2012 at 3:45 PM ^

...that if this July, the Columbus Dispatch was writing an explosive scandal story, and if OSU was again put through an NCAA investigation, with a sizable part of the OSU family including influential football alums were all undercutting Urban Meyer behind the scenes (and just to boot, imagine if Jim Tressel were still in the Buckeye Athletic Department, washing his hands of all controversy)... we'd see some 6-6 and 7-5 years out of the Ohio State University Buckeyes.

But they won't do that.  They want to win too much to do that.

Coastal Elite

April 22nd, 2012 at 4:09 PM ^

I think you're missing the point. I'm not saying that all of those distractions weren't deleterious in their own way, but none of them individually or cumulatively explain RichRod's handling of the defense or his decision to hire and then retain Greg Robinson. Certainly, the Freep imbroglio, Lloyd Carr's undermining presence, the lack of support from some segments of the fan base - all of it was extremely harmful to the program. But my point is that - *even controlling for all those factors* - the mismanagement of the defense under RichRod was a firing offense in and of itself.

Section 1

April 22nd, 2012 at 4:25 PM ^

Rich Rodriguez is gone.  He is no longer the Head football caoch at the University of Michigan.  He was relieved of his duties before the end of his contract, wrongfully in my view but my view doesn't mean much.  Anyway, he is gone and he isn't coming back and I don't see very much utility or relevance in debating the fine points of his coaching techniques.

On the other hand, there are individuals who are still here, still with varying levels of influence and activity on the fringes of our football program:  Michael Rosenberg; Mark Snyder; Lloyd Carr; Braylon Edwards; James Stapleton; Mary Sue Coleman; etc., etc.

Coastal Elite

April 22nd, 2012 at 4:34 PM ^

Ah yes, let's heal the divisions in the fan base by maintaining an indefinite jihad against a group of people who are unlikely to be purged from the public discourse any time soon, including the University's current president, former football coach, and numerous high-profile alumni.


Precisely *because* he's separated from the program, recognizing RichRod's culpability in his own failure is a form of catharsis for the Michigan community; waging an ongoing witch-hunt against still-present rival factions is not.

Section 1

April 22nd, 2012 at 4:48 PM ^

Where was the "Michigan community" in '09-'10?  Was there any "healing"?  Any protests against "witch-hunts"?

I can't even begin to tell you what sort of offense I take, at the notion of a "witch-hunt" being applied to me.  This blog, and my tiny role in it, have never been on any "witch-hunts."  We've been doing our best to oppose one of the greatest published witch-hunts in the history of Detroit newspapers.  We were right; we were right all along.  And the witch-hunters at the Free Press were pretty much comprehensively wrong.  Wrong, and massively injurious to our football program.

This is how you spell "witch-hunt" using an olde English typeface:

Section 1

April 22nd, 2012 at 5:30 PM ^

But whatever:

The Free Press filed Freedom of Information Act requests last month for specific information related to the team’s combined grade point average. The university denied the request, saying it does not keep any calculations of team averages. Rodriguez’s statement today followed additional requests for information from the newspaper. 





April 22nd, 2012 at 10:11 PM ^

I would reallly like someone with the knowledge, to elaborate on "Carr mailing it in the last three years"... why?   Because here are a few things I've heard from a former Bo player.

-That Martin essentially made Carr stay on another two years longer.

-That recruiting took a monster hit in Carr's last two years.

-And the reason for the hit was due to Les Miles spreading a Carr has onset of Parkinsons rumor, to Jai Eugene, which spread like wildfire in the elite recruiting world.

So, with the things I've heard, I'd like someone with more info on whether Carr truly "mailed it in" as the above poster said......


April 23rd, 2012 at 12:07 AM ^

Carr has admitted that he wanted to retire after the '07 Rose Bowl but Bill Martin and Mary Sue Coleman convinced him to stay one more year. Carr said that it was Mary Sue Coleman in particular who prevailed upon him to reconsider. He said that if Bill Martin and MSC hadn't pressured him to stay on another year, the '07 Rose Bowl would have been his last game. There is a news article about it, but it's a Freep piece by Rosenberg so I refuse to link to it. You can find it by Google searching "Lloyd, you can't quit. We need you." 

So yeah, I think he definitely mailed it in during the '07 season. It puts The Horror in perspective.

As for the Les Miles rumor, obviously nobody will discuss such things on the record, but Carr did make a cryptic remark about the recruiting trail when he was asked about Les Miles during his retirement press conference back on 11/19/07:

Carr subtly gave his blessing for Michigan to hire Miles, saying that he could “put to rest” any friction between them. Carr specifically mentioned the recruiting trail, which became divisive when cornerback Jai Eugene changed his commitment from Michigan to attend L.S.U. two years ago. “There’s a lot of things that happen along the recruiting trail,” Carr said. “It’s a very competitive business.”

Make of that what you will.


April 23rd, 2012 at 8:46 AM ^

because it implies a deliberate failure to give effort or to care about the results.

Carr wanted to retire because he felt he no longer had the energy required to run a major football program. He was correct. I see no reason to think he gave anything less than what he had that last year, but the man himself knew that wasn't enough.


April 22nd, 2012 at 3:28 PM ^

I'm done talking about the defense under RR--I mean what more is there to say?

Just glad Martin stayed and got some serious help before it was too late.  Hope he gets drafted by the Eagles or Steelers so we can see him line up next to Brandon Graham or Woodley.


April 22nd, 2012 at 3:26 PM ^

What a great kid. He will he an asset to any team that gets him. He truely represents what Michigan is and how they develop their kids. This is a Michigan man.