Michigan Football: Converting back to a 4-3 Defense

After three years of trying to implement the 3-3-5 defense under Rich Rodriguez, the Michigan Wolverines will convert back to a 4-3 defense. “We’re going to be a four-three defense, either an over or under front,” Brady Hoke confirmed at Wednesday’s signing day presser. “That’s something we’ve both [Hoke and DC Greg Mattison] been familiar with. We’re a little seasoned. We’ve played a lot, I mean, coached a lot. So when you look at what Greg has done in Florida, Greg has done at Baltimore, we don’t differ too much at all, if at all, in philosophy. I think it’s a great fit for what we want to do.”

Mike Martin

Mike Martin

The season is still 7 months and a spring practice away, but it’s never too early to speculate. So here is one possible starting line up.

DE: Jibreel Black (So)
DT: Mike Martin (Sr)
DT: Ryan Van Bergen (Sr)
DE: Craig Roh (Jr)
OLB: JB Fitzgerald (Sr)
ILB: Kenny Demens (RS Jr)
OLB: Cam Gordon (RS So)
CB: JT Floyd (RS Jr)
CB: Courtney Avery (So)
SS: Jordan Kovacs (RS Jr)
FS: Troy Woolfolk (Sr)

Some other defensive questions that need to be answered:

Will the new staff move William Campbell back to the defensive line? At 6-foot-5 and 325 pounds, Campbell is an ideal candidate  to play DT in a 4-3 alignment.

Will Troy Woolfolk play Safety or Cornerback?

Which of the incoming freshmen will make an immediate impact?

Feel free to leave a comment below with your thoughts on a projected line up or answers to any of the above questions.