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Posted on Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 2:24 p.m.

Michigan cornerback Gregg Brown is fourth freshman to leave program

By Kyle Meinke

Gregg Brown was the Michigan football team's first freshman to enroll this year.

Now, he is the fourth one to leave it.

Coach Brady Hoke confirmed Monday that Brown, who was Michigan's only early enrollee this year, has left the team. Hoke declined to offer a reason, despite several requests for comment.

Brown is the fourth player to defect from this year's freshman class, joining linebacker Kellen Jones, offensive lineman Tony Posada and tight end Chris Barnett. Jones later enrolled at Oklahoma.


Gregg Brown

Junior receiver Je'Ron Stokes also left the team this year.

Brown was a highly touted cornerback from Fremont, Ohio, and his early arrival to campus was expected to give him a leg up on playing time. However, he had been passed on the depth chart by fellow freshman Blake Countess, who now is challenging starter Troy Woolfolk for a starting spot.

Another freshman cornerback, Raymon Taylor, has received time in nickel packages ahead of Brown. Sophomore Courtney Avery also plays in those packages.

Brown did not make a tackle in three game appearances, one of which came on special teams.

His departure opens up an additional roster spot for next year's class, which currently stands at 23 commitments.

"That’s hard," Hoke said, when asked if he had an idea how he'd use the spot. "Obviously, you can replace the one."

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



Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 4:51 p.m.

As far as hurting or helping goes, someone would have to survey the entire existing starter list as well as one focusing on what positions most need to be filled (and at what rate). So I see no way to evaluate that consequence of Gregg Brown's departure. Yeah, like others say, we may never know the reasons for this or any player's departure. It does look a lot like he wasn't happy not getting playing time. 18 year-old males are hardly known for the soundness of their judgement or for their patience. A pretty sure bet is that he did talk with Hoke and maybe Mattison about his status before making a decision. So in that way, he probably made an "informed decision."


Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 3:27 a.m.

Those Who Don't Stay Won't Be Champions.

Blue Marker

Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 8:32 p.m.

I think you'll find ALL Michigan fans agree with you!!! Whether you intended it or not.


Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 1:58 a.m.

--- Another freshman cornerback, Raymon Taylor, has received time in nickel packages ahead of Brown. Sophomore Courtney Avery also plays in those packages. --- I don't get the slang. Is this referring to 'dime bags'??

Jeremy Weller

Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 8:03 p.m.

You are kidding right... I suppose in case you aren't I will explain. A nickel package is any formation in which you are utilizing 5 defensive backs. 5 therefore nickel. add one more defensive back "6" and you have a dime package and one more is a quarter package. a lot of times defenses will use nickel and dime packages on a passing down or when they are facing a spread team that utilizes more receivers. In the case of Michigan vs. Northwestern this year, the biggest difference between the D in the first half and in the second half of the game, is that michigan adjusted from a nickel package and went back to their base 4-3 because their corners and safeties were not getting off of blocks out on the edge.


Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 12:38 a.m.

If Brown was so highly touted why was he only a 3 star recruit?- not 4 or 5 star. I think that he wasn't so highly touted and that is an error in the article. You can't be highly touted at Michigan and be a 3 star recruit. maybe highly touted for central or Western Michigan who get mostly 2 star recruits. Of the other players who defected only Barnett was a 4 star recruit.


Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 12:36 a.m.

Guys get mad and quit if they don't get enough playing time.


Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 8:37 p.m.

They have 23 recruits already. I thought there was a 25 recruit cap by the B1G. Doesn't matter how many are available. Still capped at 25. This will help towards next years class. I was under the impression that there were more than 25 scholies available already, just not allowed over the 25 mark.


Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 12:32 a.m.

The cap is 25 in a calender year, not a football class; so they could take ,say 30 in this class (2012) and then only take 20 in 2013. Averages out to 25. I think it's good when players who aren't getting playing time- while others in the same class and position - like Countess is- leave. That frees up a scholarship for next year. I think Hoke will take several more than 25 players in 2012 since he got off to such a great start. Michigan needs to have a great 2012 class and get them coached and bulked up asap.

Terry Star21

Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 8:32 p.m.

Well, I'm sure Kyle didn't really mean 'defect', but maybe he is - taking valuable information back to ohio ? However, the point is we may never know the exact reason he left. Obviously, with four players ahead of him for playing time - that could be the final straw for something else that wasn't working out, but does it really matter. Obviously he made a choice that he felt was in his best interest and like Mrunner we wish him the best. Now with that aside - one more scholarship for 2012....whoop, whoop ! MgoBlueForTiM.............don't read Bacon's new book, let's just keep moving forward....


Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 7:29 p.m.

If you don't know why he left the team, then you shouldn't say he "defected." To defect means to switch sides, changing loyalty from one team (or country) to another. If he left UM to play for MSU or OSU, that would be defecting. This isn't it.


Tue, Oct 25, 2011 : 2:29 p.m.

Really? If this were 2008 and RR's first year and it said the players left the team, I bet people would be complaining if it didn't say players "defected". There's a question, how many players left RR's first year compared to Hoke's? And I'm not talking about the players that LC actively told to transfer - Mallet, Boren.

Stephen Landes

Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 8:22 p.m.

good point; one should keep in mind (but won't)


Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 6:58 p.m.

More questions on this one; why leave in the middle of a semester? Was it acedemic? Homesick? Not motivated to improve? Didn't buy into the Hoke regime? Either way, best wishes to him.