Michigan Football Preview 2015

2015 Michigan Football Preview

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Page 39 of 163

38 ■ THE WOLVERINE 2015 FOOTBALL PREVIEW While some harp on how much times have changed, Hanlon doesn't see it that way. "You keep hearing you can't coach kids today like you did before," he said. "The kids are different; they expect more, etc. Kids are kids. Young men are young men. They have certain expectations, certain frail- ties. They have some good, positive things about them, and they have some things that are not so good. "You've got to separate all that, and try to get rid of the bad things and push the good things. It takes a little time to get to know your kids." One of Vince Lombardi's players fa- mously opined: "He was very fair. He treated us all the same — like dogs." Michigan players picked up on that, and Hanlon smiled when recalling the reference. He's not convinced it fully applies, but … "You want your kids to think like that, but they know, deep down inside, that they don't get treated like that," he said. "They get pushed and pushed and worked, but they also get patted on the back when they needed to be." He does acknowledge employing the now politically incorrect facemask grasp every now and then. At 5-6, such a maneuver proved essential. "Authority doesn't come in size," Hanlon insisted. "It comes in respect. If the kids re- spect you, and you treat them right … "First of all, do you know why they put facemasks on football players? Everybody said it was to protect their nose and their teeth. Nope. It's to get ahold of them and get them down to your level, so you can look them in the eye when you talk to them." "He would get you down more to his eye level, no question about it," Dierdorf said. "We came to meet Jerry, more than the other way around." Hanlon got Dierdorf into hot water with the entire St. Louis Cardinals offensive line, albeit unintentionally. In Dierdorf's third season in the NFL, head coach Don Coryell brought in offensive line coach Jim Hanifan, one of the best the pros has ever witnessed. Early in training camp, Hanifan approached the former U-M great. "We had just finished a drill, and he walks up and stands beside me," Dierdorf remem- bered. "I was a pretty good run blocker. There's nobody I couldn't drive off the foot- ball. He turns and looks at me and goes, 'Where did you learn to block like that?' "I made maybe the biggest mistake of my professional career. I said, 'I was taught by this line coach in Ann Arbor, a guy named Jerry Hanlon.'" After the season, Hanifan paid a visit to Hanlon. "The next year, at training camp, we have Hanlon Stands Among An Array Of Elite Assistants Jerry Hanlon certainly stands out as one of Michigan's luminous assistant football coaches. The Wolverines have featured a host of them, down through the years. Here are 10 others who stood out in various ways, with a comment from Hanlon on most. Lloyd Carr — Carr came to Michigan in 1980, coaching defensive backs. He served as defensive coordinator from 1987‑94, guiding the defenses on five consecutive Big Ten championship squads. He added five more conference crowns in his 13 years as Michigan's head coach (1995‑2007), including the national title in 1997. Hanlon: "Lloyd was a coach's coach, and he was a player's coach. He was a student of the game. He understood the game, but most of all, he understood kids. His players liked to play for him, and I thought that was his greatest attribute." Gary Moeller — The former Ohio State captain came north with Bo Schembechler in 1969, serving in a host of capaci ‑ ties, eventually including both defensive and offensive coordinator. Moeller's defenses from 1973‑76 surrendered aver‑ ages of 6.2, 6.8, 10.8 and 7.9 points per game. Moeller took over as Michigan's head coach in 1990, leading the Wolverines to three Big Ten championships in five seasons. Hanlon: "Gary Moeller loved football. It was his life. The kids liked to play for him, too. His ability to make kids do their best was his big attribute. He was also an innovator — he wasn't afraid to try something new." Bill McCartney — McCartney worked at Michigan from 1974‑81, fash ‑ ioning the famed "McCartney's Monsters" defenses of the late 1970s. He went on to become head coach at Colorado, winning the national cham‑ pionship with the Buffaloes in 1990. Hanlon: "Bill was a complex man and very religious. He also was very determined in his coaching of football. Bill was a smart football coach, and he probably did as much with his ability as anybody I've seen." Les Miles — Miles played at Michigan, helped coach the Wolverines' of ‑ fensive line from 1987‑94, then carved his own path away from Ann Arbor. He's still the big boss down at LSU, which won the national championship under his direction in 2007. Hanlon: "Les was a go‑getter. Les was running a trucking company and quit his job, and said, 'I don't want to do this anymore. I want to be a coach.' He pushed his way and worked his way, did everything to make himself into a good football coach." Don James — James worked two seasons as Michigan's defensive coordinator, in 1966‑67. He made his name away from Ann Arbor, eventually serving as Washington's head coach from 1975‑92. James also boasts a national championship, guiding the Huskies to the title in 1991. Hanlon: "I'll never forget, at one of the bowl games, he and I were talking on the field about something. Somebody snapped a photo, and they showed it all over the country, and they said, 'Bo Schembechler and Don James meet at mid ‑ field.' Don was a good coach — a young, innovative coach who did a marvelous job on the West Coast." Don Nehlen — Nehlen worked as Michigan's quarterbacks coach from 1977‑79. He then became an icon in West Virginia, guiding the Mountaineers as head coach from 1980‑2000, including becoming the national coach of the year in 1988 with an 11‑1 squad. Hanlon: "He and I coached against each other in high school, when I was at Canton Central Catholic and Donny was at Canton South. I've known him for years, and he's one of the nicest gentlemen that was ever in the game of football. But he was a tough guy. He had to learn to put up with Schembechler and me, and he was wonderful about it." Jim Young — Young served as Schembechler's first defensive coordinator at Michigan, from 1969‑72. He held head coaching jobs thereafter at Arizona, Purdue and Army, and was Big Ten Coach of the Year in 1978. Hanlon: "Mr. Univac. The kids used to kid about him. He has statistic after statistic after statistic. Jim Young had a great mind for football. While he appears a little bit aloof to some people, if you got to know him, he was really a nice guy." Biggie Munn — Munn worked as a Michigan assistant from 1938‑45 under Fritz Crisler, throughout the Tom Harmon era and beyond. He left to coach at Syracuse in 1946 and then served as Michigan State head coach from 1947‑53. He guided a 9‑0 MSU team to the national championship in 1952 and became a fixture in East Lansing as athletic director from 1954‑71. Cam Cameron — Cameron coached Michigan wide receivers and quarterbacks from 1986‑93 and then headed to the NFL from 1994‑96 as the Washington Redskins quarterbacks coach. After five years as head coach at Indiana University, Cameron did NFL stints with the San Diego Chargers, Miami Dolphins and Baltimore Ravens. He's presently the offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at LSU under Miles. Hanlon: "Cam is similar to Les Miles. Cam was really a go‑getter and had aspirations to go as far as he could. He worked his tail off, and tried to go different places and learn different things. He learned from the pros and was one of those kids who said, 'I'm going to make it.' "I'd like to be in a room with Les and Cam, just to get on them bot and tell them they don't know what they're doing. It would be fun." Tirrel Burton — Burton coached at Michigan from 1970‑1991, first with the freshman team and then with the offensive ends. He became known for guiding the U‑M running backs, including such standouts as Butch Woolfolk and Jamie Morris. Hanlon: "He's what a coach should be. He's modest. You'd never know he was one of the greatest backs in the history of Miami University. He was not only a great football player, he could have been an Olympic track champion. "The kids who played for him loved him. He really did get close to his players. They knew if they had a problem, he would be there to help them." — John Borton Gary Moeller came to Michigan as an assistant in 1969, and he was U-M's head coach for five sea- sons, from 1990-94. PHOTO BY PER KJELDSEN

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