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Posted on Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 5:59 a.m.

The odd couple: Michigan's Mike Martin befriends Ohio State players in draft prep

By Kyle Meinke

The armistice that ended World War I was reached aboard a railroad car in a French forest. Civil War peace was hashed out at a courthouse in Appomattox, Va.

For one Michigan Wolverine and one Ohio State Buckeye, it was a T.G.I. Friday's in the Atlanta International Airport.

Former Michigan captain Mike Martin had a terrific Senior Bowl week in January, which helped to ignite the postseason draft momentum that has raised his pro stock. But while down in Mobile, Ala., he also got to know several former Buckeyes players, including center Mike Brewster and offensive tackle Mike Adams.

He got particularly close to receiver DeVier Posey -- and they ended up on the same flight back from Alabama to Detroit. With a lengthy layover to kill in Atlanta, the two agreed to meet for lunch and hash some things out.

"He’s an all right guy, actually," Martin deadpanned during a recent interview. "There’s just so much animosity and hatred toward each other('s programs), so there were a lot of things that needed to be said."

UMFB_Mike Martin.jpg

Former Michigan defensive lineman Mike Martin.

Melanie Mawell |

A Wolverine? Chilling with a Buckeye?

"I couldn’t believe it," Martin said, laughing. "I couldn’t believe it. But he’s a good kid, man. They’re good guys. We text now and everything."

Martin didn't divulge much about their conversation, but did say they found common ground while discussing the pressures weighing on them as they prepare for the NFL Draft.

Martin is projected to be taken as late as the third round, but is hoping to rise into the first. Posey is fighting to break through the logjam of mid-round receivers. Both, obviously, have a lot at stake -- including hundreds of thousands of dollars and a shot at chasing their dreams.

"Right now, that rivalry (stuff) all kind of goes out the window," Posey told last month at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. "Right now, we’re the same guys going after the same dream. It’s not too weird.

"There's hate, because of the game we play and the schools we played for, but people have to be people. And Mike's cool people."

Posey is friends with a few Michigan players, including receiver Roy Roundtree, tight end Kevin Koger and tailback Mike Shaw. All four are Ohio natives.

But for as close as he is to those guys, and now Martin, he remains bitter about how he closed his career against them. Posey won his first three games against the Wolverines, but lost the swan song, 40-34, last November.

"It just capped off a bad year. No one wants to lose to Michigan," said Posey, who played in only three games last season because of a suspension. "But I’ll take our record versus Michigan, our senior class versus their senior class.

"1-3 versus 3-1? I’ll take that."

It wasn't all touchy-feely between Martin and the rival Buckeyes. After all, he drew attention throughout the Senior Bowl week for his frequent skirmishes with Brewster during their head-to-head battles.

In some ways, it was a reprisal of their trench warfare in The Game. But things seem to have simmered between the two.

"You think certain things about guys, and then you meet them, and most of them are pretty cool," Brewster said. "Me and Mike, I respect his game. We got after it at the Senior Bowl, but I really enjoyed that, and I’m sure he did too.

"But we’re cool now. We’re all kind of in the same boat. We're just chasing dreams now, man."

Mike Martin and the Buckeyes?

An odd couple, indeed.

Kyle Meinke covers Michigan football for He can be reached at 734-623-2588, by email at and followed on Twitter @kmeinke.


Albee Macaw

Sat, Mar 10, 2012 : 2:45 a.m.

Gees what is next the Jokester actually saying Ohio State. See below. Urb is already in his head or he overdosed on fried food. Probably a lot of both. However, Hoke is embracing the big-name coach on the Buckeyes sidelines as the next chapter of this storied rivalry unfolds. He even went as far as calling the school down south by its proper name. "It's never about a coach in this rivalry, it is about two great universities," Hoke said. "We have a lot of respect for that school, for Ohio State, and I like to think they feel the same way about us."


Fri, Mar 9, 2012 : 4:23 a.m.

Good luck to both of them. I don't think either will be a star, but Posey could be a good second option at wide receiver, and Martin will provide good depth on the D line.


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 9:41 p.m.

bad news. martin may come down with an acute case of tatooitis.


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 8:42 p.m.

It doesn't surprise me, that Posey hasn't had any trouble befriending Wolverine players. In his career in Columbus, he always seem to put himself in front of the program. With the excessive celebrations, to the tatoo scandal; he's only been worried about himself. I'm sure that was easy for him, to forget his alma matter. LOL!


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 9:08 p.m.

pretty cute. Especially the LOL's.


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 6:25 p.m.

Uh, just for clarification, Gholston didn't try to get IN Denard's head. He tried to twist OFF Denard's head when he was on the ground after a tackle.


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 9:08 p.m.

Did you see Denard's passing? MSU definitely got in denard's head.

Matt Patercsak

Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 6:11 p.m.

Theyre all just young guys who chose different schools. Animosity is important in a rivalry, but once you're off the team, its ok to be friends with your former enemies because you find out there isn't much of a difference. Michigan state on the other hand...well, that's another story. Michigan and Michigan State do not respect each other like Michigan and Ohio State do.


Fri, Mar 9, 2012 : 1:26 a.m.

The players? How do you know this?


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 4:09 p.m.

You need to take Mike martin's lead and get over the whole gholston thing. he's in your head, he got in Denard's head. When he does that he already beat you without even doing anything. Just ask Denard.


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 2:26 p.m.

When it comes to Michigan rivalries, I find it much easier to hate the coaches than the players of the opposing teams, unless of course, your name is William Gholston.


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 5:49 p.m.

Hate is a pretty strong word to use. Football is supposed to be a game and we have more than enough hatred in this world already. Gholston did something stupid with emotions running high that he was punished for. Like Ndamukong Suh. Do you hate him too? But I guess if you have to spew hatred somewhere might as well direct it towards opposing coaches. They get paid the big bucks to put up with nonsense like this.

Mark Hanson

Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 5:34 p.m.

Pretty sure his name is Tom Gholston.


Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 2:15 p.m.

Based on what a relative who played for Ohio State and in the pros told me, even the most bitter rivalries turn into more playful ribbing once the players get to the NFL. These guys can be your team mates with whom you might play against your college friends. And of course, there's the obvious monetary factor - once your motivation becomes an actual salary, you don't need other reasons like hatred of the other guys to do well.

David Vande Bunte

Thu, Mar 8, 2012 : 1:11 p.m.

They may be teammates in the NFL. Carrying over collegiate grudges is pointless. I am sure many Wolverine fans are also Detroit Lions fans. Did you boo Chris Spielman? Did you root for the Lions to win, but for Spielman to have a terrible day, just because he went to OSU? I know I didn't. Once he was a Lion, the fact that he went to Ohio became irrelevant. Why should it be any different with the players themselves?