"It's like some people don't even like leaving theirself when they step on the field," Minor said after the late November debacle. "Can't really blame Rich Rod because everybody on the team didn't buy in like they were supposed to."
"Ain't going to happen on my watch as a senior next year."
After picking himself up off the mat midway through his junior year, the 6-1 220 pounder battled through injury, poor blocking, and inconsistent quarterback play to become the Wolverines most consistent and lethal weapon. Not seeing the same intensity and dedication in some of his teammates left Minor incensed.
"This was a tough learning experience for us and in the offseason I'm going to prepare myself so that this doesn't happen again," he said. "I'm going to bust my tail and hope that others follow. I promise it won't be like this next year."
If the spring is indicative of the progress Minor is making toward fulfilling that promise, so far so good. The senior tailback has drawn praise from Rich Rodriguez as one of the standout performers, but his embrace of a more significant leadership role may be even more noteworthy. Minor continues to challenge his teammates in much the same way he did at the end of last season.
"I just try to lead by example because I hate to see a player go out on the field and just go through the motions -- like they really don't want to be there," he said. "Everybody that's here, it is their dream is to play for Michigan. I just hate when they don't show it. I like to have a lot of emotion and attitude on the field, showing them that they're having a good time. Hopefully the other players will follow. You're starting to see it. It kind of rubs off after I start running my mouth."
Minor hopes that his midseason epiphany about the importance of having the proper mindset will also rub off on his teammates. He quit worrying about how his competition was playing, about who was starting, and about anything other than doing what he could to help his team win. He subsequently played his best football. If Minor has his way, that selflessness will be contagious. His answer to a question about his individual goals is a perfect example that trait.
"Just winning," Minor said regarding the personal marks he hoped to reach next year. "If we're winning, the individual stuff is going to fall into place. I aint worried about that. I'm not really worried about individual (goals) because coach is going to have plays for me to get the ball and I'm just going to have to make the best out of it. Other than that, just team play, how much chemistry we got together."
That chemistry could be adversely affected by the presence of players that don't really want to be at Michigan, and because of that Minor sees no reason to be upset over those that decided to leave in search for greener pastures.
"We handle (players leaving) very well," he stated. "You really can't do anything to get them back, so you just got to roll with who you got. It don't bother me at all."
Stay tuned for more from Brandon Minor tomorrow on GoBlueWolverine.com