SOUTH BEND IN - SEPTEMBER 11: Cierre Wood #20 of the Notre Dame Fighting Irish is tackled by Jordan Kovacs #32 of the Michigan Wolverines at Notre Dame Stadium on September 11 2010 in South Bend Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
The second of our 2012 Two-Deep player profiles takes a look at Jordan Kovacs, the former walk-on turned machine.
Jordan Kovacs came from nowhere, and his story had no meteoric rise in recruiting rankings or fanfare in a gymnasium with limousines and funky hats. His story was much simpler - he just worked really, really hard. Hailing from Clay HS somewhere in Ohio, which is still a state, Kovacs starred in track, football, and basketball, but did not receive any D-1 scholarship offers to play football, choosing instead to attend Michigan. After failing to make the squad his freshman year (2008) due to a knee injury, he walked on as a redshirt freshman in 2009 and made his debut on special teams.
What followed was nothing short of fortuitous. After an injury felled Michael Williams against Notre Dame, Kovacs stepped up admirably and started the rest of the season, falling just shy of leading the team in tackles. Looking back on 2009, I can safely say he was the only member of Michigan's secondary who knew how to tackle, and he was a walk-on. Kovacs was the lone bright spot in the back, really, earning second-team Freshman All-American honors.
Kovacs improved his sophomore year, posting 17 tackles and an interception in the loss to Ohio State and earning an honorable-mention All-Big Ten nod. In 2011, despite injury problems, he again was an honorable mention All-B10 player and won some superfluous award called IMPACT, which seems to be given to Zack Novak-y football players and Glenn Dorsey, because Glenn Dorsey was good in college.
Look for Kovacs to take another step forward for his senior season. The biggest knock on him is that he's not an all-world athlete. So what. He's a good football player, something Michigan hasn't had in years at the safety position. His best attributes are his intelligence and tackling - he is the unquestioned leader of the secondary, if not the entire defense. He'll be the smartest player on the field, and I'm hoping he can continue to provide solid run support and assist Jake Ryan with some of the shiftier runners. Michigan still doesn't have a speedy tackler, but I'd take Kovacs every day of the week. I therefore boldly predict he'll make the All-Big Ten team at safety. If he stays healthy, that's a no-brainer, particularly if he's put in the work in the weight room this offseason.
Twitter Entertainment Level
Low. Here it is. It's what you'd expect out of Jordan - solid, earnest, and polite. No shock value here, folks, but he's a good kid.
He Were A Beer, He'd Be A
Obviously a Yuengling. Hardworking, great value, better than average without being snooty about it.
See you tomorrow, Michigan Faithful!