UM’s Hurst to return for fifth season, Hill undecided
Ann Arbor — Maurice Hurst has decided to return to Michigan for a fifth season, giving the defensive line a huge boost heading into next season.
Hurst, who will work on a master’s degree next year in either business or social work, revealed his decision to reporters on Wednesday. Michigan is continuing preparations for its Orange Bowl against Florida State on Dec. 30.
Fullback Khalid Hill, however, said he has not yet decided whether he will return.
“I’m considering it, but I’m leaning more toward coming back,” Hill said. “Me, myself, I want to graduate.”
Hurst said he wrestled a bit with the decision.
“I was definitely considering it, given some of the conversations I had with people and definitely something I was interested in and something I’ve thought about a lot,” said Hurst, whose father played in the NFL for the New England Patriots. “I’m already graduating, so it wouldn’t be hard to leave now and start training. But definitely decided it would be best to come back.”
As he finished the sentence, his roommate, senior defensive lineman Chris Wormley, smiled as he walked past and added confirmation.
“Mo’s staying, Mo’s staying, Mo’s staying,” Wormley said in a sing-song voice. Wormley has said all along that Hurst would return.
Hurst finished his thought after Wormley walked away.
“I was always more weighted toward coming back,” Hurst said.
With Hurst, Michigan will return several linemen, including Rashan Gary, Bryan Mone and Chase Winovich, who saw considerable playing time this season.
“They keep a leader,” departing defensive tackle Ryan Glasgow said of Hurst. “They keep a guy who’s played a ton of football here. A very good football player and a guy who has the ability to break games open on the defensive line. He’s going to be ‘the’ guy next year, I want to say, on defense. If he puts in another good offseason of work and another good camp, spring ball together, I think the sky’s the limit for Mo.”
Hurst said he talked over his decision with his family, Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, defensive line coach Greg Mattison and Wormley.
“Chris went through a similar thing as me, so he kinda thought through everything already for himself,” Hurst said. “We’re pretty similar people, so he just assumed that would probably be the best decision for me going forward.”
Mattison told Hurst it would be better for him to return for another year and work on technique. And then there was Harbaugh at the season-ending football banquet asking those there to text and Tweet Hurst about returning.
“I couldn’t go to the bust,” Hurst said, smiling. “It was crazy when I got on my phone, I had all these notifications. I didn’t know what was going on because I didn’t hear him.”
Like Hurst, Hill has applied for an NFL scouting grade.
“It’s everybody’s dream and hopes,” Hill said of playing in the NFL. “I put my grade in, just wait and see what that is. I’ll make my decision off that.”
Hill scored 12 touchdowns this season, including 10 rushing.