ANN ARBOR - Asked today about the fact that the 2012 Michigan football team's defensive line had only 12 sacks last season, Frank Clark voiced his true feelings about that meager total.
"The thought of it, it's like a sick feeling that comes up inside myself," Clark said. "Twelve sacks as a defensive unit? When you think about it, there's guys on a single note who have 12 sacks by themselves.
"As far as the number of sacks we want to get, we just want to be dominant. As a defensive line, we call ourselves the heart of the team, we call ourselves the nasty part of the team, the people who've got to be the most aggressive and in order to do that, of course we've got to get sacks."
Clark, a junior defensive end, threw out some numbers.
South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (whom Michigan fans will remember well from the Outback Bowl) had 13 sacks last season - and 19 the year before as a freshman. Last year, Clowney was one of eight FBS players with at least 13 sacks.
Notre Dame defensive end Stephon Tuitt (who might not have gotten as much attention as teammate Manti Te'o, for various reasons) had 12 sacks last season and was part of an Irish defense that finished with 34 sacks in 13 games. By comparison, Michigan linebacker Jake Ryan led the team with 4.5 sacks in 2012.
Michigan had 22 sacks as a team last season; Stanford led all FBS teams with 57.
Then, Clark - who has been lauded since the spring by teammates and coaches as a breakout player for 2012 - set a goal for himself for this season.
"Of course, I want to have 10-plus, that's my ultimate goal," said Clark, who had two sacks in 13 games last season. "I know I can get that accomplished with the help of my teammates."