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UM's Derrick Green improving but won't play vs. Terps

Angelique S. Chengelis
The Detroit News

Michigan coach Brady Hoke last week suggested running back Derrick Green, sidelined since breaking his collarbone in the Rutgers game Oct. 4, could return this season.

Hoke had said last month that Green was out for the rest of the season.

The Wolverines, 5-5, have two remaining games, including Saturday's final home game against Maryland.

Don't expect to see Green against the Terrapins, though.

"I would probably say there's not that opportunity," Hoke said Tuesday during the Big Ten conference call. "But he continues to improve."

In Green's absence, De'Veon Smith has been the lead tailback. Smith has 487 yards on 95 attempts and scored six touchdowns. Drake Johnson had a breakout rushing game against Indiana, gaining 122 yards on 16 carries. Smith had 121 yards on 18 carries in Michigan's last game against Maryland. Michigan was off last weekend.

Staying in touch

Michigan interim athletic director Jim Hackett has kept a low profile since being formally introduced Oct. 31, but in an email letter to "donors, student-athlete alumni and friends" sent Tuesday morning, he wrote about his commitment to identifying a permanent athletic director.

"One that will no doubt preserve and enhance the qualities that make U-M a leader in academics and athletics," Hackett wrote. "I value your input and will serve you by ensuring the future of Michigan Athletics is in capable and skilled hands. Furthermore, I see my role as an opportunity to give back to a university that has given me so much."

Last Thursday while in Grand Rapids to receive an award, Hackett spoke to WOOD-TV and said he will evaluate Michigan football coach Brady Hoke and the program after the season.

"Brady's a man of extreme integrity," Hackett told the television station. "And he knows more than any of us that we're not performing at the level we should as a Michigan program."

Fan appreciation

Michigan has designated the final home game of the season on Saturday as a "Fan Appreciation Day."

Fans will be allowed on the Michigan Stadium field for a half-hour about 30-45 minutes after the game against Maryland. Season-ticket holders will have access to special $5 concession packs.

The first 2,000 student season-ticket holders will receive a voucher for a free hot chocolate.

Michigan football will honor the Wolverines' 12 seniors during a Senior Day ceremony, which will begin 25 minutes before kickoff.