This morning, Michigan announced it has signed defensive coordinator Greg Mattison to a three-year extension.
To say the defense at Michigan hasn't turned around under his watch the last couple seasons would be a gross understatement. Last season, Michigan ranked 13th in the country in total defense, yielding a solid 18.8 points per contest. This differs greatly from the 33.8 given up in 2010, the last season before Hoke and Mattison came to Ann Arbor.
Another huge benefit to the extension is clearly on the recruiting trail. Mattison has done an excellent job in Ohio and with many of Michigan's top targets in general. The extension prevents other programs from potentially dangling the idea that he may retire in the near future as well. Mattison is currently playing a central role in the recruitments of top targets Da'Shawn Hand, Malik McDowell and Kyle Berger, all of whom will be in Ann Arbor in some capacity this weekend. The extension comes at a great time, allowing him to express to them his desire to continue coaching in Ann Arbor.
With Roy Manning now on the staff and coaching outside linebackers, Mattison's main focus going forward will be at the defensive end position, where the Wolverines are looking to improve on a pass rushing attack that was ninth in the conference in sacks last season and has struggled in getting to the quarterback without the aid of Coach Mattison's confusing blitz packages.
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