Skip to main content

The Four Most Interesting Things Jesse Minter Said: Aug. 11, 2022

Michigan's new defensive coordinator Jesse Minter has some big shoes to fill but he seems up to the task.

Jesse Minter has been on the job at Michigan for about six months and is now just a couple of weeks away from calling U-M's defense for real. Replacing Mike Macdonald is no small task, but Minter seems up to the task. He's been running the defense since spring ball and is now well into fall camp and you get the sense that he's got a pretty good feel for his personnel, scheme and expectations. 

"Because it might not be one guy, it's given us the ability to maybe move people around more."

This all but confirms what we outlined a little over a week ago after talking to a few defensive players while on Mackinac Island. While losing players like David Ojabo and Aidan Hutchinson is never a good thing, dropping edge rushers into pass coverage from time to time can make a defense more versatile and harder to attack. That's what this defense feels like. There are guys who can rush the passer, but they could also provide value in other areas. I'm really interested to see what it looks like.

"[Mike Macdonald and I] both have a fairly calm demeanor about us that allows us to stay in the moment and not ride the wave of emotion."

I haven't been around Jesse Minter very much yet but I can see this. You got the sense in talking to Mike Macdonald last year that he was just unflappable. He never seemed to be too high or too low, and if people have said the same thing about Minter in the past, I'd say that's a good thing. The fact that both guys worked for John Harbaugh in Baltimore and have been compared to each other throughout the years speaks to the consistency that some of the defensive players mentioned. DJ Turner actually laughed about how similar the two coordinators are. Per Turner, things could change once the season starts, but for now the transition has been incredibly smooth.

"Whew...he's a freak."

Well what do you know? More praise for Mazi Smith. With Smith recently topping Bruce Feldman's Freaks List, everyone seems to be paying attention to and talking about the big defensive tackle. After seeing him in Indianapolis for Big Ten Media Days, then around the state of Michigan and in photo form on the Michigan football Twitter page, Smith is clearly on a mission. Combine those things with his now 337-pound frame that doesn't look to have much bad weight on it and you start to understand why seemingly everyone is ready to watch Smith explode.

Scroll to Continue

Read More

"[Kenneth Grant is] a 350-plus-pound human being that moves really well and is really, really strong naturally. It's pretty freakish to watch him go up the plyo steps or move laterally.

That sounds like a gift from the football gods to me. It's going to be really interesting to see how much Grant plays because there are snaps to be had at defensive tackle. With Mazi Smith pushing 340 pounds, and Grant topping 350, that is a mass of athletic, strong and talented humanity in the middle of Michigan's defensive line. We're pretty sure that a guy like Kris "The Mutant" Jenkins is going to play a decent amount, and freshman Mason Graham has been mentioned quite a bit too, but the idea of 700 pounds of Grant/Smith in the middle just sounds awesome.