Al Washington is familiar with Don Brown’s talent as a defensive coordinator, spending five seasons with him at Boston College.
He has coached at seven different schools over the last 12 years with Michigan being the latest stop.
Washington joined the Michigan staff in January as linebackers coach and has been very impressed with the program from top to bottom, but also the work ethic and drive this team has shown since he arrived.
Washington recently spoke with WTKA’s Sam Webb and discussed how players have transformed this year, the culture within the program and how impressed he’s been as one of the latest additions to the coaching staff.
Washington is excited to see how prepared the players are mentally and self-motivated. Some of the names he mentioned that had great development include Khaleke Hudson, Josh Uche, Noah Furbush and Jordan Glasgow.
He referred to Hudson as a “great leader” mainly due to his experience overall and how engaged he’s been with the younger players.
Noah Furbush has only gained about five pounds, according to Washington, but mentioned how noticeable it is with his development physically. He is a really good athlete and may surprise people how much he contributes this fall.
Who has made the biggest strides?
Washington mentioned Uche when asked who made the biggest strides. He’s put on about 15 pounds, changed his demeanor and made big plays in camp.
Washington added saying, “He works his tail off, he’s got to continue it this fall camp and I know he will. So you put me on the spot and that’s the first player to come to my mind.”
As far as Glasgow, Washington said, “Very natural, athletic, and physical. To me, he’s one of the most dependable guys we have as a football player.”
Ben Herbert is also in his first season at Michigan as the new strength and conditioning coach. Washington has seen players transform firsthand, and had high praise for how Herbert has made such a huge impact so quick.
“They do look different, the transformation, making you do a double take,” Washington said. “They are unbelievable and the way they work they know Ben (Herbert) cares about them and creating a culture that it shows he cares about them. Bodies look completely differently. They are aligned with the nutrition and conditioning program that we can see physically.”
Washington also commented on what he’s been impressed with as one of the newer coaches to the Michigan program since he’s been there since only January.
“I can’t say I was surprised, was impressed at the speed the defense plays,” he said. “Just the way they love each other, it’s a great culture and are hungry, they’re self motivated and well aware of what they need to do.”
This year started in the right direction with hard work in the offseason, which may pay off really soon when fall camp and the 2018 season begins for the Wolverines.
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