By PressBox Staff
Hey Michigan fans, we've been where you are. Just two seasons ago, we had a new defensive coordinator by the name of Greg Mattison. ...
But in case you haven't been following him during the years since, here's a few notes to bring you up to speed.
During Mattison's 32-game, two-season reign over the Ravens' defense, Baltimore allowed just 16.6 points per game, the lowest among the four coordinators the Ravens have had to date (and that includes a certain outspoken coach by the name of Rex Ryan).
During this span, Baltimore allowed a league-low 54 touchdowns, 13 of them on the ground, the third-fewest in the league. Baltimore was also third in scoring defense in each of Mattison’s two seasons at the defensive helm.
But the measure of a coach is also how he can manage, inspire and develop his players.
"One thing that's good about him, he's coached all the positions," Ravens nose tackle Kelly Gregg said. "He coached the linebackers. ... He was a defensive line coach before and he just ties everything together. He's a good teacher, he's real honest and he helps us get better each day. That's good for us."
"I think deep down he's really a defensive line coach," defensive end Trevor Pryce said. "That's what I know him as, a defensive line coach. He spends a lot of time with us, and I'm like, 'Don't you have a secondary to deal with?' He'll say, 'Oh no, those guys will figure it out.'"
So, how will Mattison transition back to the college game? If safety Ed Reed knows what he's talking about, it may not be that different.
"I haven't been anywhere else," Reed said. "But this place here has almost like a college feel. We talk about tradition. We talk about our defense as a tradition, of upholding certain standards."
And perhaps most important is what Mattison himself has said:
"You have to coach with toughness but at the same time with fairness. ... Don't bend the rules. Don't do something that's going to give you a short-term fix. It's about the whole program."
If that doesn't ring true as the words you want to hear from a college coach, what does?
Posted Jan. 19, 2011