After alluding to an announcement of sorts Tuesday during his Big Ten conference call, Michigan coach Brady Hoke confirmed what many thought could be the case for the Wolverines star, but injured freshman, at his Wednesday press conference at Schembechler Hall.
“Jabrill, I told you guys I’d have an answer a little bit and we’re going to redshirt him for this year,” Hoke said. “Him and I have had a lot of different conversations, talked to his mother, talked to doctors, trainers, and everybody that should be included in the conversation.
“But, a couple things that he’s done very well is taking care of himself and he’s done great with the treatments, great with rehab and all those things. He’s done a tremendous job in school right now, academically, and he’s excited about when he can get back on the field.
“He’s improved, but he’s just not going to be where you want a guy to be who has that kind of ability.”
Peppers has been out since making three tackles in Michigan’s win over Miami (Ohio) on Sept. 13.
“Initially it was six to eight weeks we thought the timeline on it,” Hoke said. “He’ll be in good shape probably in the next four or five weeks.”
Calling Peppers’ issue just a “leg injury” without getting into any other specifics, Hoke did add the New Jersey native would not require a surgical procedure in order to rehab and recover.
“He doesn’t need surgery,” Hoke said. “It’s one of those things if I could tell you exactly the medical diagnosis I would but he’s improving as we go forward.”
Hoke and Michigan expect Peppers to make a full recovery and be 100-percent by the time spring football rolls around.
Although fans haven’t had the opportunity to fully see what Peppers can do with their own eyes, Hoke and the team saw glimpses of his talent in practice.
“We were very excited about what he brings from an attitude standpoint to the explosiveness, the athletic standpoint, the make-up, the speed; all the things that made him one of the most recruited guys in this country,” Hoke said.
“His football intelligence was at a high level and his instincts. We lost, you know, possibly he could’ve been at the nickel or a safety, either one for us and so I think he could play all three positions but where he would’ve effected our team more is where we would’ve played him.”