Jim Harbaugh looks on during Michigan's national championship celebration.

Michigan agrees to 3-year probation for recruiting violations

Michigan will serve three years of probation after reaching an agreement with the NCAA over recruiting violations and coaching activities by noncoaching staff members, the NCAA announced Tuesday.

Michigan will face recruiting restrictions and pay a fine in relation to violations from five current or former football employees.

The penalties include a one-year show-cause order for all five individuals.

“Today’s joint resolution pertains to the University of Michigan Athletic Department and several former and current employees,” Michigan athletic director Warde Manuel said in a statement. “We are pleased to reach a resolution on this matter so that our student-athletes and our football program can move forward. We have no additional information and cannot comment further on other aspects of the NCAA’s inquiries.”

The NCAA said that former coach Jim Harbaugh — who guided the team to the College Football Playoff title in January — isn’t part in the agreement.

“The agreed-upon violations involve impermissible in-person recruiting contacts during a COVID-19 dead period, impermissible tryouts, and the program exceeding the number of allowed countable coaches when noncoaching staff members engaged in on- and off-field coaching activities (including providing technical and tactical skills instruction to student-athletes),” the NCAA said in a statement.

“The negotiated resolution also involved the school’s agreement that the underlying violations demonstrated a head coach responsibility violation and the former football head coach failed to meet his responsibility to cooperate with the investigation. The school also agreed that it failed to deter and detect the impermissible recruiting contacts and did not ensure that the football program adhered to rules for noncoaching staff members.”

Harbaugh is now the head coach of the Los Angeles Chargers.

“I filed a lengthy response to the (Notice of Allegations) on behalf of Coach Harbaugh, which unfortunately hasn’t been made public and will probably never see the light of day,” Tom Mars, Harbaugh’s attorney, told ESPN. “That concluded Coach Harbaugh’s participation in the case.”

Harbaugh served a three-game suspension at the beginning of the 2023 season after the NCAA felt he made false statements during the investigation. Then-offensive coordinator Sherrone Moore served a one-game suspension. Moore is now the Wolverines’ head coach.

Tuesday’s developments are unrelated to the Michigan sign-stealing investigation. That case is ongoing. Harbaugh also served a three-game suspension in that case.

–Field Level Media

Apr 11, 2023; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin defensive line coach Greg Scruggs is shown during practice Tuesday, April 11, 2023 at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis. Mandatory Credit: Mark Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports

New Michigan DL coach resigns after arrest

Recently hired Michigan defensive line coach Greg Scruggs resigned Thursday following an arrest for operating a vehicle while intoxicated.

Wolverines head coach Sherrone Moore confirmed the resignation but declined further comment, telling ESPN it is “a university matter.”

Ann Arbor police arrested Scruggs on Saturday after finding his car stopped in an intersection with its hazard lights on. His blood-alcohol level was double the legal limit for Michigan, officials said.

Scruggs, who coached the defensive line at Wisconsin last season, was hired to join Moore’s staff on March 6. He replaced Mike Elston, who followed former coach Jim Harbaugh to the Los Angeles Chargers.

Scruggs, 33, was a defensive end who played in 18 games in the NFL with the Seattle Seahawks (2012, 2014) and Chicago Bears (2015-16).

He began his coaching career at the University of Cincinnati (2018-21) and was the New York Jets’ assistant D-line coach in 2022.

The defending national champion Wolverines began spring practice on Monday.

–Field Level Media

Wisconsin defensive line coach Greg Scruggs watches his players go through drills during practice on Sunday Aug. 6, 2023 at Pioneer Stadium in Platteville, Wis.

New Michigan DL coach Greg Scruggs suspended after arrest

Greg Scruggs, who was named Michigan’s defensive line coach just 10 days ago, was arrested on a drunk-driving charge early Saturday and suspended from the program.

“Greg made an unfortunate mistake and was arrested for operating a vehicle while intoxicated,” Michigan coach Sherrone Moore said in a statement. “He made no excuses and has taken accountability for his actions. The football program and athletic department have suspended Greg indefinitely while we review details of the incident.”

The Wolverines announced his hiring on March 6. He was the defensive line coach at Wisconsin in 2023 and the assistant line coach with the New York Jets in 2022.

Scruggs, 33, knows Moore from their days at Louisville, when Scruggs was a player and Moore a grad assistant. In late 2011, Scruggs was arrested in Kentucky on a drunk-driving charge and dismissed from the team before Louisville met North Carolina State in the Belk Bowl.

Scruggs appeared in 18 games between 2012-16 for the Seattle Seahawks and Chicago Bears, recording 11 tackles and three sacks.

–Field Level Media

Jan 13, 2024; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy speaks during the national championship celebration at Crisler Center in Ann Arbor on Saturday, Jan. 13, 2024. Mandatory Credit: Junfu Han-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan’s J.J. McCarthy touts ‘Everything you want in starting QB’

INDIANAPOLIS — Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy makes no apologies about his statistics falling short in a tale of the tape with the top-ranked passers in the 2024 NFL Draft, but he’s ready to talk wins and losses.

McCarthy exited Ann Arbor in January on the heels of a national title win over Washington and has lost only three games — one with the Wolverines compared to 27 victories — since he began his high school football career (34-2 as a starter).

So what would an NFL team be getting if they went with McCarthy over the past two Heisman Trophy winners — Caleb Williams of USC and Jayden Daniels of LSU?

“I would say, tough, gritty guy who only cares about winning at the end of the day,” McCarthy said Friday at the NFL Scouting Combine. “Loves the game of football with a burning passion, loves his teammates. Just pretty much everything you’d want in starting quarterback.”

Meetings with multiple teams with a need at the position dominated the past two nights for McCarthy. He said he had formal interviews with the Denver Broncos, Las Vegas Raiders, Chicago Bears, Seattle Seahawks, Minnesota Vikings, New England Patriots, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and New York Giants, among others.

“I just let them know who I am. That’s something that a lot of people don’t know, and it’s not just putting it on a front.” McCarthy said. “I want them to actually understand that I truly love the game of football, I truly love my teammates and want to do nothing but win football games.”

McCarthy plans to throw in Saturday’s on-field session for quarterbacks, when participation will otherwise be sparse. Williams, Daniels and North Carolina’s Drake Maye all have opted out of the passing session.

Because of hamstring tightness, McCarthy will not run the 40 or do the vertical or broad jump at the combine.

Michigan wide receiver Roman Wilson expects McCarthy to open a lot of eyes, even in a limited workout.

“I think a lot of people like to say like he can’t throw. I feel like he’s an unbelievable quarterback,” Wilson said. “You guys are going to see at pro day or even here, his arm talent is through the roof. He’s one of the better quarterbacks in this draft.”

–Field Level Media

Apr 2, 2022; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA;  General view during the Michigan Spring game at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Ex-Michigan, CFL linebacker Craig Roh dies at 33

Craig Roh, a four-year starter on the defensive line at Michigan from 2009-12, has died at age 33 from colon cancer.

His wife, Chelsea Roh, announced his death on Wednesday on social media. The Rohs have a 2-year-old son, Max.

“Craig was the most driven/disciplined person I have ever met,” Chelsea Roh wrote on Instagram. “He gave 10000% into everything he did, including being a wonderful husband/father. Driving away from our first date, I knew in that moment that my life was changed forever. … Even though he left the world at only 33, Craig lived an amazingly full life. I’m not sure how I’m going to live the rest of my days without him, but I will put one foot in front of the other for our beautiful little boy.”

According to a GoFundMe page set up to pay for medical expenses and Max’s education, Roh was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer in August 2022.

“Craig did not want to go public with his diagnosis and battle because, in true Craig fashion, he did not want the attention to be on him,” the fundraiser page reads. “From chemo, to targeted therapy, to clinical trials at MD Anderson (in Houston) and in Honduras, Craig was resilient till the very end.”

Roh started a program-record 51 straight games at Michigan after twice being named Gatorade Player of the Year in his native Arizona. He later spent one season with the Carolina Panthers and five in the Canadian Football League, where he won the Grey Cup with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in 2019.

The Rohs moved to Austin, Texas, where Craig Roh worked at tech startups and also started an online business teaching the techniques of coaching defensive lines.

“I am saddened to hear about the passing of former defensive end Craig Roh, our program’s all-time leader in career starts,” new Michigan football coach Sherrone Moore posted to social media. “My heart goes out to his family during this difficult time. The entire Roh family is in my thoughts and prayers and we hope for peace and comfort for all who knew this great Wolverine.”

–Field Level Media

Oct 7, 2023; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Michigan Wolverines defensive back Keon Sabb (3) returns an interception for a touchdown against the Minnesota Golden Gophers during the third quarter at Huntington Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Krohn-USA TODAY Sports

Alabama lands former Michigan S Keon Sabb

Former Michigan safety Keon Sabb has enrolled at Alabama after entering the transfer portal last week.

He played in 14 games for the national champion Wolverines in 2023 and tallied two interceptions and 28 tackles.

The sophomore returned an interception 28 yards for a touchdown in Michigan’s 52-10 win at Minnesota on Oct. 7.

Sabb was a four-star recruit in the Class of 2022 out of IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. The 247Sports composite ranked him as the No. 9 safety in the nation.

New Crimson Tide head coach Kalen DeBoer’s general manager, Courtney Morgan, recruited Sabb to Michigan.

–Field Level Media

Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy kisses the championship trophy to celebrate the Wolverines' 34-13 win over Washington in the national championship game at NRG Stadium in Houston on Monday, Jan. 8, 2024.

NFL invites 321 prospects to Scouting Combine

The NFL on Tuesday released the list of 321 prospects invited to the 2024 NFL Scouting Combine.

Defending national champion Michigan leads the way with 18 players selected to participate in the pre-draft event in Indianapolis from Feb. 26 through March 4.

The Wolverines on the guest list include quarterback J.J. McCarthy, running back Blake Corum and wide receivers Roman Wilson and Cornelius Johnson. Also on the list are tight end AJ Barner and offensive linemen Karsen Barnhart, Zak Zinter, Trevor Keegan, Drake Nugent, Trente Jones and LaDarius Henderson.

Michigan representatives on the defensive side are linebackers Michael Barrett and Junior Colson, defensive backs Mike Sainristil and Josh Wallace, and defensive linemen Jaylen Harrell, Kris Jenkins and Braiden McGregor.

McCarthy was one of 14 quarterbacks invited, along with Heisman Trophy winners Jayden Daniels of LSU and Caleb Williams of Southern California.

The Chicago Bears hold the No. 1 overall pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, which begins on April 25 in Detroit.

–Field Level Media

Giants defensive coordinator Don "Wink" Martindale during warm ups prior to the Houston Texans at the New York Giants in a game played at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ on November 13, 2022.

The Houston Texans Face The New York Giants In A Game Played At Metlife Stadium In East Rutherford Nj On November 13 2022

Report: Michigan hiring Wink Martindale as DC

Michigan is hiring former New York Giants defensive coordinator Don “Wink” Martindale for the same position, ESPN reported Friday.

He replaces Jesse Minter, who left the national champion Wolverines to follow head coach Jim Harbaugh to the Los Angeles Chargers.

Martindale, 60, spent the past two seasons with the Giants. They parted ways after a six-win campaign in 2023.

Michigan operated a version of Martindale’s defense under both Minter and former defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald, which should ease the transition for returning players under new head coach Sherrone Moore.

Martindale has been coaching in the NFL since 2004, including stints as the defensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos (2010) and Baltimore Ravens (2018-21).

His experience in the collegiate ranks includes serving as the DC at both Western Kentucky (2000-03) and Western Illinois (1999).

–Field Level Media

Oct 21, 2023; Eugene, Oregon, USA; A general view of an end zone pylon during the second half between the Oregon Ducks and the Washington State Cougars at Autzen Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

5-star WR Gatlin Bair commits to Oregon, won’t play until 2026

Wide receiver Gatlin Bair, a five-star prospect in the 2024 class, has committed to Oregon.

“I’m super excited about Oregon and what coach (Dan) Lanning is building,” Bair told 247Sports on Saturday. “He is one of the most ambitious coaches I’ve ever been around and they’re on track to compete in the Big Ten and win some titles. … They’re running an offense that any receiver would want to be a part of.”

From Burley, Idaho, Bair is the highest-rated player ever from the state, per 247Sports, which ranked him the No. 6 wide receiver in the class and No. 27 among all positions in the nation.

The 6-foot-1 Bair intends to sign with Oregon next week but won’t be part of the team until 2026 after he serves a two-year mission through the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 247Sports reported.

Bair previously was committed to Boise State but decommitted on Dec. 1.

He also considered Michigan for his new commitment.

–Field Level Media

Nov 25, 2023; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; Michigan Wolverines interim head coach Sherrone Moore talks on the sideline during the NCAA football game against the Ohio State Buckeyes at Michigan Stadium. Ohio State lost 30-24.

Sherrone Moore takes over at Michigan: ‘This place is special’

New Michigan football coach Sherrone Moore said he doesn’t plan to tinker much with success.

Moore was formally introduced Saturday as the successor to Jim Harbaugh, who led the Wolverines to the College Football Playoff title before returning to the NFL this week as the head coach of the Los Angeles Chargers. And Moore said he doesn’t plan to differ much from the philosophy Harbaugh and his staff laid out for the team.

“I want the players to be as comfortable as possible as we move forward,” Moore said.

Michigan announced the hiring of Moore, who served as Harbaugh’s offensive coordinator and offensive line coach, on Friday night. He was given a five-year deal at $6 million a year with incentives that could add millions more, the Detroit Free Press reported.

Moore was in charge of the team for four games while Harbaugh served suspensions in 2023 and the Wolverines were 4-0 under his leadership.

This is the first full-time head coach job for Moore, who turns 38 on Feb. 3. He said those four games gave him a sample of what he will face in his new job and is counting on the Michigan staff to help him. He said he wants to keep as many members of Harbaugh’s staff as he can.

He said an equal priority is reaching out to the players, both currently on the roster and those intending to play at Michigan, to let them know that they come first.

“I coach hard, but I love harder,” Moore said. “At the end of the day, they know that I’m going to do everything in the best interest for them and this team.”

Moore is taking over a historic program coming off a 15-0, national championship season. It could be a daunting task, but Moore said he is ready.

“I’ve grown tremendously in every phase, from a leadership standpoint, a delegation standpoint, a football standpoint, personal, recruiting,” said Moore, who joined Harbaugh’s staff in 2018 as tight ends coach and later was promoted to offensive coordinator.

And while not a Michigan alum like Harbaugh, Moore clearly has the maize and blue in his blood now.

“The love for Michigan is undeniable and really indescribable for me. This place is special. When you come here and you feel it, it’s a lot different. It’s something I don’t ever want to let go,” he said.

Though he wasn’t in Ann Arbor on Saturday, Harbaugh remained a topic of discussion, with both Moore and athletic director Warde Manuel paying tribute to the former coach.

Moore said he’d lean on Harbaugh for advice, and Manuel said he always will be part of the Wolvcerines.

“I want to thank Jim for his nine years of service and contributions to Michigan football and our greatness. He we always be remembered by us,” Manuel said, adding he’d be cheering for the Chargers.

“If the timing is right, Sherrone and I would like him to come back as a captain of game this year, if the byes work out, and as (Moore) says, take a long and slow bow in front of all the fans.”

Moore will face a difficult schedule in his first season. The Wolverines open Aug. 31 against Fresno State, then face Texas on Sept. 7 before beginning play in the revamped Big Ten. They have Southern California, Oregon and Washington — the team the Wolverines beat in the CFP title game — on the schedule, which ends Nov. 30 with their rivalry game at Ohio State.

–Field Level Media