The Michigan football team lost a lot of their coaching staff after winning the national championship last year. Jim Harbaugh left for the Los Angeles Chargers, and then the dominoes began to fall. Besides Harbaugh, the most unfortunate departure was defensive coordinator Jesse Minter. Minter did a fantastic job with the Wolverines, and he is ready for the NFL. Now, Michigan has Wink Martindale as their new DC.

Wink Martindale has a ton of coaching experience as he has been in the game since 1986. He has coached for a lot of different teams, but there is one landing spot that has Michigan football fans excited. Martindale coached with the Baltimore Ravens from 2018-2021, and the Wolverines have had a lot of success with former Ravens as their DC.

The last DC that Michigan had that wasn't a former Ravens coach was Don Brown. Brown had a lot of early success with the Wolverines, but it ended up not working out, and he was let go after the 2020 season.

Martindale recently appeared on the Champions Circle Leader Series and discussed Don Brown a little bit. He noted that there was a narrative that he was going to go back to that old-school system that Brown ran, and he wanted to make it clear that the narrative isn't true.

There’s a narrative now that some people are afraid it’s going back to the old-school Don Brown system,” Martindale said. “That’s not the case whatsoever. To me, that’s profiling. Just because I’m old and Don Brown’s old, you can’t put us together.”

Michigan fans will like to hear that. They did not enjoy the final years of the Don Brown era, and they don't want to go back to it.

The recipe for success for Michigan remains the same

Blue Team head coach Wink Martindale watches a play during the spring game at Michigan Stadium

Obviously, there are going to be some changes made within the Michigan football program as this coaching staff is very different. However, there are a lot of staff members from last year still there, they are just in different positions now. They know the recipe for success, and a lot of things will likely stay the same.

Wink Martindale will have a lot of talent to work with in his first year as DC. He saw how this defense had success last year, and he has some of the best players from that unit back again this season. He is familiar with the system as he worked for the Ravens, so it wouldn't be surprising if this Michigan defense looks very similar in 2024 despite the coaching changes.