What a difference a regime makes. Rich Rodriguez was a marked man before he ever arrived in Ann Arbor. Whether it was his promise to stay at West Virginia, or the fact that he wasn’t even Michigan’s second choice, the pundits were restless, to say the least.
When you expected that things couldn’t get worse, they did. Player defections, key injuries and, of course, an NCAA investigation led to one of the most tumultuous periods in Michigan history.
After the Rodriguez exit, Brady Hoke arrived after Michigan unsuccessfully courted Jim Harbaugh and Les Miles.
Hoke took the Michigan job after resurrecting programs at Ball State and San Diego State. He brought with him the title of “Michigan Man” since he was a Wolverine assistant earlier in his career.
What he didn’t bring was baggage. Even the folks in California wished him well. To Hoke it was his dream job, and thus far, he’s treated it as such.
Will he be successful? The Ann Arbor faithful believe so, and they’re willing to give the time he needs. No one is demanding a Big Ten championship in his first season. The expectations are realistic. It actually looks like Hoke is in an excellent situation.
Let’s take a look at how Hoke might establish some goals for his first year, modest as they may seem.