“One step ahead of the grim reaper”

“One step ahead of the grim reaper”

June 18, 2009
Equipment manager Jon Falk
challenges Mike Barwis in

Michigan’s official site has a piece on the coaches’ exercise habits. I think many fans are largely unaware of how much time major college coaches spend working per day. Barwis states that they often work 16- or 17-hour days, and I’ve read about many a coach who regularly sleeps on the couch in his office. These guys barely get enough time to sleep, let alone exercise . . .

. . . which is why it’s important for superfans to have this handy dandy guide to where the coaches work out.

Defensive line coach Bruce Tall says, “I have a nice route that goes from State to Eisenhower and I loop back around and end up on Packard.”

Linebackers coach Jay Hopson has a different route. “I can’t stand running,” says Hopson, “but I have to keep the heart going. I’ll do a 5K that takes me around campus and back through The Diag, which is a beautiful part of the run and something I look forward to. I don’t listen to music. I just take off and start running.”

Sadly, Rich Rodriguez and some of the other coaches do the majority of their exercising at Schembechler Hall, which makes it increasingly difficult and potentially unlawful to stalk them.

However, if you’re going to stalk them, put on your sprintin’ shoes or get out the Schwinn. When I lived in Ann Arbor a few years ago, Lloyd Carr walked out of the Starbucks at State and Liberty. My excuse is that I was only wearing flip-flops (that’s right, ladies – only flip-flops), but that dude left me in his dust like I was Minnesota and he was Carlos Brown.


  1. Comments: 21384
    Jun 18, 2009 at 6:53 PM

    16 to 17 hour days, 365 days a year? That has to be stretching the truth a little bit. That leaves absolutely no time for family, at all.

    It definitely is a tough business and I couldn't do it. I work 60-70 hours a week as a professor, and I feel that is almost too much and takes me away from my kids and wife too much. I can't imagine being born into a football family if those work hours are accurate.

  2. Comments: 21384
    Jun 18, 2009 at 7:19 PM

    I would imagine that coaching is a bit like teaching. Even when you're home, there are things to prepare for the next day or there's film to watch or there are recruits/coaches you need to call/e-mail. So even though 16-17 hours a day probably isn't spent at the facility, it's probably not too much of a stretch to imagine that they're working on football-related projects for that much time.

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