ANN ARBOR — Aidan Hutchinson didn’t care to mince words when the topic of his former coach was brought up.
Hutchinson, a second-year defensive end, was asked Saturday after Michigan’s spring game about a post on social media he published more than week ago about Greg Mattison.
In it, Mattison, Michigan’s long-time assistant coach who left for Ohio State in January, is captured on video referencing the Wolverines as “that team up north,” a common reference to Michigan by OSU fans.
Hutchinson replied with, “Oh… so it’s like that,” followed with a pair of emojis resembling a snake.
“OK, so here’s about that,” Hutchinson said. “Coach (Mattison), he taught me so much when he got here. I’m not taking any of that away from. But you get a big feeling of betrayal.”
Hutchinson, who played in all 13 games last season (totaling 15 tackles, 1 1/2 for a loss) and is in line to potentially start at defensive end this fall, said Mattison told him directly he was either “retiring or he’s renewing his contract.”
Instead, Mattison, 69 years old and with 13 years on staff at Michigan, left for a big payday and more control of the defense at Ohio State. Mattison’s first tenure at Michigan (1992-96) coincided, briefly, with All-American Steve Hutchinson, Aidan’s father.
“Then I found out he’s leaving and I’m like, ‘OK, whatever,’,” Aidan Hutchinson said. “And then he said Ohio State and that kind of makes your stomach turn a little bit. He taught me a lot — I’m not taking that away from him — but it just gives you a different mindset on things.
“I wouldn’t mind if he went to another school, but that (expletive) kind of hurts.”
Mattison’s departure seems to have bothered others on the Michigan football team, too. Defensive tackle Donovan Jeter, typically outspoken on social media, quickly said, “no comment” when asked about it.
“Because I’m a lot less filtered than Aidan,” said Jeter, who is currently No. 1 on the depth chart at defensive tackle. “I don’t want to say anything bad about (Mattison), because I messed up a lot off the field and he kept faith in me. (Mattison) could have (said), ‘I’m done with this kid,’ but he brought me along.
“He showed me how to play. How to stop the run. How to be a professional. But doing what he did, I can’t — no comment.”
Earlier in the week, safeties coach and special teams coordinator Chris Partridge called it “a shot” to see Mattison and Al Washington, who coached linebackers for one season at Michigan, leave for the school’s bitter rival.
“That’s his decision,” Partridge said. “He made his bed. He’s going to lie in it.”
Michigan, riding a seven-game losing streak against the Buckeyes, hosts Ohio State in its regular-season finale on Nov. 30.
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