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Posted on Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 12:50 p.m.

Next up for Michigan football player Jordan Kovacs? A scholarship

By Dave Birkett

Jordan Kovacs is living a dream as a walk-on playing football for Michigan. He'll make his fourth straight start at safety today against Illinois, and after a nondescript beginning has become one of the Wolverines' most reliable defensive backs.

But Kovacs, in his first year with the program, still isn't on scholarship.


Jordan Kovacs

"He's certainly earned one when we have one available," Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez said earlier this week. "I haven’t talked to him about it, but his performance and what he’s done, he’s earned the right to be on scholarship. So once we have one available, he’s the first one in."

With Michigan under the 85-scholarship limit, Rodriguez gave one-year grants to several upperclassmen at the start of the year. Many went to seniors who'll graduate in December, thus freeing up the grant for incoming freshmen who want to enroll early.

Kovacs, who made the team as a walk-on in March and made a meteoric rise up the depth chart this fall, said in a phone interview last month he hoped to win a scholarship at the end of the season.

"That’s the next goal," he said. "Right now I’m just excited about playing."

Dave Birkett covers University of Michigan football for He can be reached by phone at 734-623-2552 or by e-mail at Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.