The assistant coach maelstrom is finally beginning to settle in Ann Arbor: five members of Rich Rodriguez's staff at West Virginia will be joining him at the University of Michigan. The most important among the five is not offensive coordinator Calvin Magee or DB's coach Tony Gibson. It's this man:
Strength and conditioning coach Mike Barwis. Barwis is legendary for the physical punishment to which he subjects his players. He has been Rich Rodriguez's S & C man since day one at West Virginia (he actually precedes him, gaining the S & C job back in 2000) and can claim a lot of responsibility for the overachieving success of the Mountaineers program over the past six years. West Virginia has churned out absolute freaks since Barwis signed on at WVU despite a recruiting history that is somewhat less prestigious than other, bigger schools.
However you measure the value of a coach, Barwis is arguably the second-most valuable assistant in America and inarguably the best S & C coach in the nation.
Furthermore, not only do we get to acquire a coach with manic intensity and vicious authority like Barwis, we get to dump this guy:
Current Michigan S & C coach Mike Gittleson. I don't want to come down too hard on Gittleson, because he's been Michigan's S & C boss for thirty years, but he's been the S & C boss for thirty years. I'm pretty sure physical fitness has advanced a step or two since 1978. Even his profile on Michigan's athletic website admits his stale, antiquated status, calling him a "pioneer" in the field and describing his coaching methods as "preventative against injury." Barwis wants to hurt you. With Michigan's superior facilities (I've seen them--trust me, they're better), I anticipate a Michigan squad quick, strong, and fit enough to earn the Wolverines moniker. It's time for some youth, it's time for some aggression, and it's time for some not-a-pedophile.