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Michigan’ Jim Harbaugh hires two new coaches, including one ‘curveball’


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Earlier this week, we reported that Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh was expected to hire Mississippi State defensive coordinator Bob Shoop to join his coaching staff.

Embed from Getty Images

On Saturday, the Shoop hire was made official but there was also another hire that WolverinesWire called a “curveball” of a hire.

That “curveball” is former South Florida defensive coordinator, Brian Jean-May.

Here is the full press release from the University of Michigan:

University of Michigan J. Ira and Nicki Harris Head Football Coach Jim Harbaugh announced Saturday (Jan. 18) the addition of Brian Jean-Mary and Bob Shoop to the Wolverines’ defensive coaching staff. Shoop will coach the safeties and Jean-Mary will coach linebackers.

“I am excited about the addition of Brian and Bob to our defensive coaching staff,” said Harbaugh. “Brian and Bob are well-respected, experienced coaches who represent great fits for the University of Michigan. Both coaches have experience coordinating some of the best defenses in the country, and their development of all-conference and future NFL players throughout their careers will benefit our program and student-athletes. Michigan Football looks forward to having Brian, Bob and their families join the University family.”

Harbaugh also announced the elevation of Jay Harbaugh as the program’s special teams coordinator in addition to his role mentoring the running backs. The younger Harbaugh has been an assistant special teams coach throughout his tenure at Michigan, working with all six phases of special teams.

“Jay has done an excellent job working with all aspects of our special teams over his five seasons with our staff,” said Harbaugh. “His organization and attention to detail, in conjunction with the help of our assistant coaches, will allow our special teams units to remain one of the best in the country. We are excited about Jay’s added leadership in this area.”

Both Shoop and Jean-Mary bring more than 20 years of coaching experience to Ann Arbor, with both serving as defensive coordinators during their careers.

Following is biographical information and comments from Shoop and Jean-Mary about joining the Michigan staff:

Brian Jean-Mary

Jean-Mary on Michigan
“It is an honor to join Coach Harbaugh’s staff at the University of Michigan. I am excited about the opportunity to work under a truly outstanding leader, to join a program with such a rich tradition of winning, and to recruit the best and brightest to the University of Michigan. My family cannot wait to get to Ann Arbor. Go Blue!””

Jean-Mary Biographical Information
Jean-Mary was assistant head coach and defensive coordinator at the University of South Florida from 2017-19, where he helped the Bulls defense become one of the nation’s best at forcing turnovers and getting to the quarterback.

Jean-Mary arrives in Ann Arbor as a 21-year coaching veteran having spent the last 10 seasons on the defensive staffs of Charlie Strong, first at Louisville (2010-13) as assistant head coach/linebackers coach, then at Texas (2014-16) as linebackers coach and recruiting coordinator, and finally at USF (2017-19).

As a recruiter, Jean-Mary helped produce a trio of top-15 signing classes at Texas, improving from 15th in 2014 to seventh in 2015 and eighth in 2016, and one at Georgia Tech (15th, 2007). He also had a top-30 class at Louisville in 2011 (27th).

At USF, Jean-Mary’s defensive units were consistently among the nation’s best in turnovers created, tackles for loss, and pass defense. In his first year, USF listed top-25 nationally in six categories, including sacks per game (3.0, 11th) and interceptions (20, second). The Bulls led The American Conference in total defense (359.8 yards per game) and scoring defense (21.5 points per game), improving from 120th in total defense and 92nd in scoring defense to 37th and 41st, respectively, after Jean-Mary’s arrival. Defensive tackle Deadrin Senat was one of five all-conference defenders before being drafted in the third round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

USF forced 69 turnovers across Jean-Mary’s three seasons (24, 21, 24) and ranked top-30 in that area twice. The Bulls also ranked top-five in tackles for loss per game twice (8.4 and 8.3 per game in 2017, ’19) and ranked No. 4 in red zone defense in 2019 (67.4 percent).

At Texas, Jean-Mary developed the linebacking core to produce four All-Big 12 players and an All-American in Jordan Hicks (2014). Texas was top-25 nationally in six categories in 2014, including sacks (11th). The Longhorns averaged more than 3.0 sacks per game in all three years Jean-Mary was at Texas, ranking top-five nationally in his last two seasons. UT also led the nation in recovered fumbles (21) in 2014 and ranked 11th in 2015 (12). Linebacker Jordan Hicks was selected in the third round of the 2015 NFL Draft, and Jean-Mary’s former players Lorenzo Mauldin and Deiontrez Mount (from his days at Louisville) were also chosen.

Before Texas, Jean-Mary worked as assistant head coach/linebackers coach at Louisville where the Cardinals won 37 games and two Big East Championships (2011, ’12) across four seasons. UL compiled a 3-1 bowl game record peaking with a win over No. 4 Florida in the 2013 Sugar Bowl. Louisville’s .885 win percentage (23-3) over the 2012-13 seasons was the fourth-best mark in the country during that time. Five Cardinals were selected in the NFL Draft during his time there: defensive backs Calvin Pryor (2014, first round) and Johnny Patrick (2011, third round), defensive ends Marcus Smith (2014, first round) and Greg Scruggs (2012, seventh round), and linebacker Preston Brown (2014, third round).

Jean-Mary spent six seasons coaching linebackers at Georgia Tech from 2004-09, guiding the defense to top-30 seasons in rushing defense, scoring defense and total defense in five of his six years on staff. He got started in coaching as a graduate assistant on the strength and conditioning staff at Louisville in 2000 before spending two seasons under Lou Holtz at South Carolina, where he was a defensive graduate assistant coach (2001-02). Jean-Mary then got his first full-time coaching job at North Alabama (2003), a highly successful NCAA Division II program, where he helped the Lions go 13-2, win the Gulf South Conference Championship, and clinch a berth in the semifinals of the 2003 NCAA Division II playoffs.

Jean-Mary is a native of Apopka, Florida. He earned his bachelor’s degree in 1998 in political science from Appalachian State, where he played linebacker from 1993-97. He and his wife, Jerilyn Ardis, have two daughters, Brooke and Brittany.

Bob Shoop

Shoop on Michigan
“I am very appreciative to Coach Harbaugh for the opportunity to join the football family at Michigan. I look forward to getting to work, contributing to a program that will continue to combine academic achievement and athletic excellence, while competing for championships. Go Blue!””

Shoop Biographical Information
A two-time Broyles Award finalist, Shoop comes to Ann Arbor with more than 30 years of coaching experience, including the last two seasons as defensive coordinator at Mississippi State.

Recently, Shoop has coordinated units to top-25 total defense rankings six times in the last nine seasons. He was named 2018 FootballScoop Defensive Coordinator of the Year and 2014 247Sports’ Defensive Coordinator of the Year. He was FootballScoop’s FCS Defensive Coordinator of the Year in 2009 while at William and Mary, and was also a finalist for the Broyles Award that season.

His defenses and secondaries are aggressive, disciplined playmaking units that create turnovers and limit big plays.

In 2019, Mississippi State led the SEC with 14 fumble recoveries (No. 4 nationally) and added 10 interceptions to rank second in the conference in overall turnovers (24). Four different players recorded at least one interception, while three recovered multiple fumbles.

Shoop’s 2018 unit was the only defense in the FBS to finish top-10 in all four major defensive categories (total defense, scoring defense, rushing defense, and passing defense). The Bulldogs allowed only 12 touchdowns all season, the fewest allowed by any FBS team since 2011. Five teams were kept out of the end zone, and out of 32 trips allowed in the MSU red zone, teams only scored eight touchdowns. MSU also allowed just 3.5 of opponents’ plays to gain 25 yards or more, the smallest percentage in the nation.

State led the nation in total defense (263.1 yards), finished second in scoring defense (13.2 points), and rushing defense (95.08 yards) and listed seventh in passing defense (168.0 yards). The Bulldogs were No. 1 in the SEC in 29 different categories — including 10 NCAA-leading marks. Shoop’s defense allowed the fewest yards per play in the country (4.13). MSU’s 103 tackles for loss set a new program record while no opponent topped 30 points against the Bulldogs all year.

While at MSU, Shoop helped produce three 2019 first-round NFL Draft picks in Jeffrey Simmons (19th), Montez Sweat (26th) and Johnathan Abram (30th). When Gerri Green was taken in the sixth round, Mississippi State set a program record for most defensive players taken in one draft (four).

Shoop has served as a defensive coordinator for 16 years, including two seasons at Tennessee (2016-17), two seasons at Penn State (2014-15) and three seasons at Vanderbilt (2011-13). Over his last 11 seasons, he has coached 20 NFL Draft picks with four at MSU, five at Tennessee, five at Penn State, three at Vanderbilt and three at William & Mary.

Shoop began his coaching career at his alma mater, Yale, in 1989 as a graduate assistant. He also has spent time as an assistant coach at William & Mary (2007-10), Massachusetts (2006), Boston College (1999-2002), Army (1998), Villanova (1997), Yale (1989, 1994-96), Northeastern (1991-93) and Virginia (1990). Shoop also has head coaching experience, leading the Columbia program for three seasons (2003-05).

Shoop played wide receiver at Yale where he earned his bachelor’s degree in economics. He was recognized with Yale Football’s prestigious Robert Gardner Anderson Memorial Award for team spirit, dedication and leadership. He also earned four letters in baseball.

Shoop was a three-sport standout at Riverview High School and is a member of the Allegheny-Kiski Valley Sports Hall of Fame. He and his wife, Maura, have two sons, Tyler and Jay.

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