ANN ARBOR – J. Ira and Nicki Harris Family Head Football Coach Jim Harbaugh announced Monday (Feb. 22) the hiring of Matt Weiss as the program’s quarterbacks coach. Weiss comes to Ann Arbor after coaching as a member of the Baltimore Ravens coaching staff for the past 12 seasons.
“I am really excited about reconnecting with Coach Matt Weiss,” said Harbaugh. “We have a great relationship from our time together at Stanford and he brings a great deal of experience coaching all three phases of the game in addition to his strength in the area of analytics and game strategy. He is a great teacher and will be an excellent role model for our student-athletes. We are excited to have Matt, Melissa and their children, Bowen (Bo), Zuzana (Zuzu) and Noema join our Michigan Football and university family.”
“I am excited about the opportunity to coach at the University of Michigan and help contribute to the winningest program in college football history,” said Weiss. “I look forward to reuniting with Coach Jim Harbaugh, learning our offensive system, and building relationships with the staff and student-athletes. I’ve heard that the University of Michigan is a special place, and my family and I are thrilled to become a part of the University of Michigan community. Go Blue!”
Harbaugh also announced that Ron Bellamy would be shifting over to the defensive side of the ball and will coach the safeties, while George Helow will mentor the linebackers.
Weiss worked previously with head coach Jim Harbaugh at Stanford, where he was a graduate assistant coach with the defense and special teams (2005-08).
An assistant coach under Ravens’ coach John Harbaugh, Weiss mentored the running backs the past two seasons (2019-20) after working as an assistant with the receivers (2018) and quarterbacks (2016-17). He also served as the team’s football strategy coordinator in 2018.
There have only been four teams to rush for 3,000 yards during an NFL season and two of them have been the Ravens with Weiss leading the run game. The 2019 Ravens (3,296 yards) broke the league mark that stood for more than three decades (3,165 yards) after being set by the 1978 New England Patriots. Baltimore’s encore performance in 2020 (3,071 yards) ranks fourth all-time. The Ravens averaged 5.5 yards per carry as a team in both seasons, ranking fourth and fifth all-time. Those were the highest marks since the 2006 Atlanta Falcons averaged 5.5 yards per carry as a team.
Baltimore set six franchise records on offense in 2019: touchdowns (64), points (531), net yards (6,521), rushing yards (3,296), first downs (386) and fewest turnovers (15). Weiss helped running back Mark Ingram earn his third Pro Bowl bid after rushing for 1,018 yards while setting a team record with 15 total touchdowns (10 rushing, 5 receiving).
The 2020 Ravens became the sixth team in league history to average 200 yards rushing and passing on a per-game basis. The Ravens were the best in the league at yards per rush attempt (5.5) and first downs by rushing (166) while listing eighth in the NFL in yards per play (5.9). Rookie back J.K. Dobbins led the league in yards per carry (6.01 avg.), set the Ravens’ rookie record with nine touchdowns while rushing for 925 yards as the team averaged a league-high 191.9 yards per game, more than 23 yards more than the next-closest team. The team’s 24 touchdowns on the ground ranked third.
Prior to working with the Ravens’ offense, Weiss held a variety of roles on defense (2009-15), including cornerbacks coach, assistant linebackers coach and quality control. He joined the Baltimore staff in 2009 as the head coach’s assistant and worked with then-secondary coach Chuck Pagano. The Ravens’ defense ranked top three in the NFL in fewest points allowed three consecutive years (2009-11), tying an NFL record, while Weiss also helped coach four Pro Bowl performers.
As cornerbacks coach, Weiss helped the pass defense improve from 23rd the prior year to 10th in 2015, while the defense listed eighth in the league. The prior season he worked with the linebackers (2014), helping OLB Elvis Dumervil set the franchise sack record (17) and earn Pro Bowl honors. Dumervil and Terrell Suggs combined to produce the NFL’s top sack tandem (29).
In addition to his roles with the Ravens’ offense and defense, Weiss was responsible for leading the analytics department of the coaching staff, scripting situational practice periods and advising the staff on in-game management decisions. From 2009 to 2018, Baltimore’s decision-making led to more successful coaching challenges (42) than the NFL average of 24 per team during that span. Additionally, with the help of Weiss, the Ravens twice used an intentional safety to win a game, including their Super Bowl XLVII victory.
At Stanford, Weiss worked with the defense and special teams as a graduate assistant coach. He worked with the defensive backs (2005), linebackers (2006), defensive line (2007) and defense/special teams (2008). Weiss earned a master’s degree in liberal arts during his time in Palo Alto. He was responsible for opponent breakdowns, tendency and scouting reports for the staff and he also ran the scout teams during practice.
A New Haven, Connecticut native, Weiss began his coaching career as an assistant at Smyrna (Tenn.) High School in 2003-04 after a four-year playing career at Vanderbilt (2001-04). He graduated magna cum laude in 2005 with a bachelor’s degree in economics and human and organizational development.
Matt and his wife, Melissa, have a son, Bowen (Bo), and two daughters, Zuzana (Zuzu) and Noema.