Why former Michigan football edge Braiden McGregor is confident in the new U-M coaching staff

Braiden McGregor has seen good times and he’s seen bad times during his tenure as a Wolverine.

Having arrived in 2020 as a true freshman, McGregor saw what it was like to truly hit rock bottom as a program in Ann Arbor. But then, he witnessed and partook in greatness over the course of the next three seasons.

But all good things must come to an end, and as McGregor departs the program now that his senior year is done, he’s watched something of a coaching exodus also happen with Jim Harbaugh and the entire Michigan football defensive staff leaving the program.

At the NFL scouting combine in Indianapolis, McGregor reacted to former offensive coordinator Sherrone Moore being elevated to be the team’s new head coach. While that interim role he assumed for four games last season is in the rearview, McGregor sees a team that should thrive in Moore’s first full season, and it’s clear that Moore has his confidence.

“I think they did a great job of hiring coach Moore,” McGregor said. “I think that was the No. 1 thing is make sure we get the right guy. That whole locker room, everybody, loves coach Moore. So now that they got him I think it’s just up from here.

“They have all the tools on defense. The offense is reloading, a lot of young guys that have been itching to get their chance. So this year, I think we’re still on the up-and-coming. I mean, even at the top of college football last year, I think they still have a good opportunity this year, too.”

But it wasn’t just the defensive coaches that moved on.

Many were surprised when strength and conditioning coach Ben Herbert opted to follow Jim Harbaugh to the NFL, especially as there were rumblings that Herbert had intimated that he planned on staying with the program in Ann Arbor. However, it appears he received an offer he couldn’t refuse and ended up moving on to a new challenge. Thus, one of his underlings, Justin Tress, was elevated to the new strength and conditioning coordinator.

Tress joined Michigan football at the same time as Herbert, in 2018, and bided his time until he moved up the chain.

McGregor has full confidence in what Tress brings to the table, noting he has a lot of similarities as Herbert did, but also knows when to back off and jell with the players a bit.

“First of all, I’m so happy for coach Tress,” McGregor said. “When I got there, he was kind of the younger guy. I think he was like the third in line. So it’s kind of cool to just to see. OK, I went through four years, coach Herb went to the Chargers, coach Ro, he went to Purdue, and now coach Tress gets the job.

“It’s just so exciting to see what he does, because he was the type of guy, he was like coach Herb and then he would like have an off-switch to be able to actually hang out with you — kind of understand that.

“So I’m just excited to see what he does. I know he’s got these turn-up Saturdays going on right now where the boys are getting lit in the weight room, shirts off, water bottle squirting. And so I’m excited when I go back to be able to go in there and be able to see the new staff and see what he’s doing.”

While McGregor’s time with the Wolverines is done, he appears to believe that the national championship for the maize and blue is just the beginning. Certainly, fans in the state of Michigan will hope he’s right.

Story originally appeared on Wolverines Wire