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Saturday, February 04, 2006

Passing English?

Back on January 6th I posted a link to an article discussing possible changes to Michgan's coaching staff, mentioning defensive backs coach Ron English as a potential successor to Jim Hermann as defensive coordinator.

It seems like Coach English had the same idea, though it appears that his promotion will not take place. Today's Chicago Tribune has an article stating that English has been offered the secondary coach position with the Chicago Bears. The article explains that English, who reportedly has also interviewed for secondary coach job with the Detroit Lions, "spent Friday gauging his chances of becoming defensive coordinator at Michigan. One source said that when Michigan offered only the chance of becoming co-defensive coordinator, he (English) told Bears officials it was down to Chicago and Detroit."

In addition to his solid reputation as a defensive assistant, English is known for being one of the Michigan staff's top recruiters, and was credited this week for his critical role in attracting one of the nation's top safeties, Jonas Mouton from Venice (CA) High School.


Benny Friedman said...

If this article is true, I'm going to be really pissed off. It implies that we're happy w/ Herrman and all the talk about making changes was just that - talk.
English is a rising star and if we let him go because of our loyalty to Herrman, I'm afraid that the day where we'll be looking back fondly on 7-5 seasons will be coming really soon.

swindlerjackson said...

Lloyd Carr is a f'ing idiot. We just lost our best recruiter and Loeffler, our 2nd best, is next.

BaggyPantsDevil said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
BaggyPantsDevil said...

I don't think this is what we all had in mind when all those coaching change rumors began after the Alamo Bowl.

Instead of increasing the responsibilities of the more competent coaches and maybe even letting go the guys in charge of the routinely weak areas, we get one of the promising coaches recognizing the glass ceiling and bolting for the NFL while the perpetual poor performers stay in place or move up.

IC said...

To follow up on Swindler's comment above re. Scot Loeffler is this from an article in Saturday's Detroit Free Press:

"And quarterbacks coach Scot Loeffler is expected to interview for the same position with the New England Patriots, a U-M source said. Loeffler is close to Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, dating to their days as teammates at Michigan."

Benny Friedman said...

IC, does that article really say that Loeffler and Brady are dating? Wait, I guess I misread it.

surrounded in columbus said...

something even more amazing in today's Detroit News. the article explains the upheaval in the coaching staff pretty well, but i couldn't believe what they had to say about Herrmann:

"Rumors of his demotion have been greatly exaggerated. Rumors that Herrmann has been talking to NFL teams are true, however.

NFL coaches, apparently, are smitten by what they consider to be Herrmann's defensive genius and his elaborate schemes that sometimes are difficult to translate to the college game.

Herrmann's future is up in the air as he weighs NFL options."

they also go on to say that English (who has been very careful to say he has NOT signed w/ the Bears yet) could be persuaded to stay IF he's offered the DC job. (read the whole article = http://detroitnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060207/SPORTS0201/602070343/1131 )

i honestly don't know which baffles me more- that Lloyd is thinking about keeping Herrmann or that people in the NFL think he's a defensive genious? maybe they're all sniffing glue...

BaggyPantsDevil said...


I saw the story and am just as flabbergasted as you.

I keep picturing that Road Runner cartoon with Herrmann in the role of Wile E. Coyote saying, “Jim Herrmann, Defensive Genius” just before be obliterated by Vince Young/Troy Smith/Gary Russell/Darius Walker--pick a player--in the role of the Road Runner.

PS: There should be a seperate post on this article coming soon.

Yost said...

Yeah, SiC, UNREAL!

Look for Baggy's post tomorrow on the subject.

IC said...

Though the article says English is "gone" I am encouraged by the amount of time it is taking for him to announce a decision regarding the offer from the Bears. The most plausible reason for the delay is his hope of becoming our d-coordinator.

Re. Herrmann's "defensive genius": The explanation can be found in the article, specifically, "his elaborate schemes ...are difficult to translate to the college game." Think about it: in the pros, having a defense passively stay back and hope to hang on to a slim lead is more likely to work because the clock doesn't stop after first downs.

Herrmann's a genius, NFL. Better get him NOW!

BaggyPantsDevil said...


I still think a genius, an honest to goodness real genius, will run defensive schemes appropriate to his players abilities and the rules of the game he’s engaged in.

But, if the NFL wants to think he’s a defensive genius--by all means guys--Jim Herrmann’s a defensive genius. He just needs some professional athletes to show the world what he can really do. Seriously! We’re talking Chicago Bears circa 1985, here. Better grab him now before your divisional rival does.

Benny Friedman said...

Sorry, IC. According to the Ann Arbor News, English signed with the Bears on Monday (http://www.mlive.com/sportsflash/michigan/index.ssf?/base/sports-16/1139343551156900.xml&storylist=michigansports).

surrounded in columbus said...

it actually all makes sense now. i constantly bitch that our defense is inconsistent from season to season and complain that Carr keeps Herrmann around from season to season. but now i get it-

Herrmann's a genius at putting together complex, pro style defenses. that's why Lloyd keeps him around- Carr understands how good it looks on paper and how good it is when it works. unfortunately, it's too complex for college and he can't carry it off from one year to the next.

it makes sense- the west coast offense is one of the most successful pro schemes in the last 20 years. however, no one (until callaghan at nebraska) has tried to run it in college because it is considered too complex for college players to learn w/ the limited practice time and turning over the whole team every 4 years.

the same probably applies to Herrmann's defenses. once the kids learn the scheme and mature w/ it, it's very effective. that's why about every 2-4 years we have a really good, even dominating defense ('97, '01', and '03 ended w/ the M defense ranked in the top 12 or higher).

unfortunately, it's either so damned complex to learn or so dependent on the personnel, Herrmann can't maintain performance from one season to the next, and when the scheme doesn't work, it really doesn't work.

now as a practical matter, BPD hit it right on the head- what good is something if no one can make it work? what good is a "brilliant" scheme that only works one season out of 4? we'd be better off w/ something less brilliant but more consistent.

assuming the News is correct- going to the pros would be the best thing for everyone, including Herrmann.