The rumors have finally become true and defensive coordinator DJ Durkin has accepted the head coaching job at Maryland after one year at Michigan. Durkin turned Michigan’s defense into a top five one nationally and posted three straight shutouts during the season. Taking over for him for the bowl game against Florida is former defensive coordinator Greg Mattison who was demoted to the defensive line coach after Jim Harbaugh was hired as the new head coach. Here are some potential names that will come up for the new job opening in Ann Arbor.
Shafer was the defensive coordinator for Harbaugh at Stanford in 2007 and has had success at the collegiate level except for his stint at Michigan under former head coach Rich Rodriguez. Shafer has recently been fired after three years as the head coach at Syracuse. A redemption at Michigan could be something his career needs.
This is another person who has worked with Harbaugh in the past so it is easy to peg him as someone that will be interview for this job. His name was initially rumored when Harbaugh was first hired at Michigan, but ended up staying at Stanford after Durkin was hired.
Current Staff Members
The next defensive coordinator could come from a promotion from the current staff. Mattison, who was mentioned earlier, has previously held this position and has coached at the pro-level. His only probably is his age and rumors that he was close to retiring, which is why he was moved to a smaller coaching position when the new coach was hired. Another possibility would be defensive backs coach Greg Jackson. The secondary has shown a lot of improvement under him and it could be enough for Harbaugh to make the easy hire.
Not much more has been talked about this open position since it was vacated. I think Harbaugh and company are using this time to prepare for the bowl game and use the coaches they have first. This could be a test for Mattison to see how well he can do in limited practice.