Michigan linebacker Brandon Smith misses team meeting, may look to transfer
The Michigan football team's already thin defense might take another hit.
Roundtree, one of about 10 players and staff members to volunteer at The Salvation Army of Washtenaw County’s toy shop for needy families Wednesday, said he hasn’t talked to Smith recently, but Smith missed a team meeting earlier this week and it’s “looking like” he’ll leave.
He made one start, when Michigan went to a 4-4 defense in a November loss to Wisconsin, and had 4 tackles and assisted on a tackle-for-loss against the Badgers.
In an e-mail last week, Smith said he was not willing to do any interviews.
A Michigan spokesperson declined comment, and Smith’s grandmother referred all questions to Smith when reached at her home on Wednesday.
Recruited as a safety as part of Rich Rodriguez’s first class, Smith moved to outside linebacker last year. He finished the season third on the depth chart at weak-side linebacker behind Jonas Mouton and Kevin Leach.
Regardless of Smith’s decision, Michigan will have to replace 2 of its most productive defensive players next year in defensive end Brandon Graham and linebacker Stevie Brown. Junior cornerback Donovan Warren also is considering entering the NFL draft.
Dave Birkett covers University of Michigan football for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached by phone at 734-623-2552 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.