Connect with us


2023 Michigan football defense earns elite ranking from ESPN

The Michigan football defense is thought to be among the nation’s best in 2023.



Michigan football, Jameer Grimsley
Sep 3, 2022; Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; Michigan Wolverines defensive back Rod Moore (19) celebrates after he makes an interception in the first half against the Colorado State Rams at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The 2023 Michigan football defense is looking as good as any program in the nation. With a lot on the line in the coming year, it’s incredibly important that the Wolverine defense steps up, potentially leading Michigan football to its first national championship since 1997. According to ESPN, Jim Harbaugh’s defense is among the nation’s best, ranking as the No. 2 unit nationally ahead of their fall opener.

2023 Michigan football defense earns elite ranking

According to recently released rankings by ESPN, the 2023 Michigan football defense is ranked among the top three in the nation. It is only second to Georgia’s defense, which has played a crucial role in leading the Bulldogs to two consecutive national championships.

This upcoming fall, the Wolverine defense will be led by second-year defensive coordinator Jesse Minter. Minter took over from Mike McDonald last fall and had an exceptional first year with the Maize and Blue.

In fact, his impressive defensive play-calling helped lead Michigan football to its winningest season in program history, going 13-1 (10-0 Big Ten), claiming a conference championship and College Football Playoff appearance for the second-consecutive season.

In addition to Michigan’s No. 2 ranking, the Big Ten conference boasts two other programs in the nation’s top 10. The Penn State Nittany Lions are ranked as the No. 4 defense, while the Wisconsin Badgers hold the No. 10 spot.

With Rod Moore and Will Johnson in the secondary, a revamped linebacker corps, and a stellar defensive line, Michigan football appears poised to make a run at their 3rd straight Big Ten title, a national championship, and everything in between.

Thank you for reading Blue by Ninety. For more Michigan Athletics content from Blue by Ninety, follow us on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram. You can also subscribe to our YouTube Channel. For feedback, questions, concerns, or to apply for a writing position, please email our Managing Editor at Also, be sure to check out our shop and our podcast, which is available on Apple PodcastsSpotify, and all other streaming platforms. It is because of your support that we have become one of the fastest-growing and most influential Michigan media outlets there is!