UM's Tim Drevno will be run-first offensive coordinator

Angelique S. Chengelis
The Detroit News
Tim Drevno has been a college assistant at Montana State, UNLV, San Jose State, Idaho, San Diego, Stanford and USC.

Tim Drevno brings a run-first mentality and wants an offensive line that imposes its will every down.

Drevno, who has worked with new Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh on three different staffs for more than a decade, is Michigan's new offensive coordinator. His hiring was made official on Friday.

Drevno also will coach the offensive line. Harbaugh announced D.J. Durkin as defensive coordinator on Thursday.

"Tim is an outstanding offensive line coach and is a technician that works very hard at making his student-athletes better players and students," Harbaugh said in a statement.

Drevno knows what he wants from the Michigan offense, which was ranked 111th nationally in total offense in the Wolverines' 5-7 season last fall, Brady Hoke's last as head coach.

Michigan, under first-year offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier, was ranked 109th in scoring offense after averaging 20.9 points a game.

Turnovers were a large part of Michigan's issues offensively. The Wolverines were minus-14 in turnover margin, ranking No. 120.

Drevno wants to run a multi-dimensional offense with a run-first mentality. Michigan's offensive line, much maligned in 2013, showed improvement last season. All five starters return.

"We're going to drive people off the ball," Drevno told MGoBlue.com in a video interview. "We're going to be a physical football team."

Michigan returns experience among the running backs, including Justice Hayes, who will be a senior, and juniors-to-be Derrick Green and De'Veon Smith. Also in the mix will be USC transfer Ty Isaac.

Of course the biggest priority for Michigan's offense will be sorting through the quarterbacks, including Shane Morris, Wilton Speight and early enrollee Alex Malzone.

"This program has so much tradition there's no better place than Ann Arbor, Michigan," Drevno said. "I just feel very privileged to be here to be part of the great program and restore the great tradition here."

And a big part of that means restoring the tradition of Michigan's offensive line play.

"They work great together," Todd Mortensen, a former quarterback at San Diego under Harbaugh, said of Harbaugh and Drevno. "Drevno is a likable guy who loves being in the film room with his linemen.

"He has a lot of contagious sayings. He fits the college game very well."

Drevno used one of those sayings during his video interviewing.

"Make yourself small, everybody big," Drevno said, citing the Harbaugh approach.

Drevno spent three seasons with Harbaugh at the 49ers before becoming the running game coordinator and offensive line coach at USC.

Drevno also worked with Harbaugh at Stanford University (2007-10). He coached the tight ends for the first two seasons and took over the offensive line during their final two seasons. The offensive line was second in the nation in fewest sacks allowed in back-to-back seasons and helped pave the way for a ground game that set the school rushing yardage mark in 2009.

Drevno was offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at San Diego (2003-06), Harbaugh's first coaching stop.

Asked what Michigan fans should expect from the offense, Drevno was definitive.

"This is an exciting time and great things are going to happen," Drevno said.