The nutty Michigan coverage isn't so much about Harbaugh as it is a signal to the Big Ten that Fox wants to party.
Update: While we started off early morning dry with clearer skies, things have turned overcast. We've picked up a few hundredths of rain already this morning, and just because we're dry for this moment-don't let it fool you, take that poncho! The set-up right now in the atmosphere supports rain this afternoon (and overnight), and this break will be short-lived. Thunderstorms are still possible today and tonight, and lightning strikes have already been reported with the rain/storms headed our way. Keep an eye on the weather and stay safe!
High pressure system moves out of the area and a low pressure system makes it's way through the plains-headed for the Great Lakes region. The system could cause severe weather-and delays for other college games-for A2 we'll get some rain and possibly a thunderstorm (especially later in the day), and today is a day you'll want to pay attention to the weather. Don't be shocked if there's a lightning delay here. Happy Homecoming and grab the poncho if you're headed to this one...
Clear skies, light winds, and dry air early (5-8am) this morning has lows around 30 degrees -expect widespread frost on the ground! A freeze warning's in effect until 8am for Washtenaw County. We'll start to thaw out around that time as a warmer breeze out of the south and the sunrise picks temps up quickly; cloud cover will also start to go up. Wind starts to pick up to about 10mph (leaves blow about) by 9am, and by early afternoon could get gusts around 20mph (small branches move). By late morning/lunchtime temps have reached the low 40s and we also bring in the rain and possible t-storms.
What a raw start to a game! Gray, rainy, and windy. The first round of heavier rain continues to make it's way through during the first half. Thunderstorms are possible as well. Wind will be out of the SSW at 15mph with gusts in the low 20s. Hitting 54 degrees right around kickoff.
Temperature continues to rise, and by halftime we're up to 58 degrees with overcast skies, rain, and t-storms are possible. Wind is up a bit-still out of the SSW-to 17mph with gusts in the mid 20s.
Some backyards may have received 1/2" of rainfall by the end of the game! The temperature goes up by a couple more degrees behind a warm front. By 10pm, we're up to 60 degrees and we'll stay around 63 throughout the night. Showers and possible thunderstorms are still in the forecast during the entire evening, overnight, and into Sunday as well, with the greatest potential for heavy rain near the Saginaw/Tri-Cities area. Wind will stay constant also-staying up around 15-17mph and gusts in the low and mid 20s. If you're going to the game-probably going to be one where you head home for soup afterwards! Have a great time and go blue!
Christina Burkhart is a meteorologist for NBC/ABC in Traverse City, MI, and temporarily for NBC25 in Flint/Saginaw, MI. She grew up in Ann Arbor and associates Saturdays with Michigan football. Go Blue!!
Everybody that has even a half brain knew last week that Michigan will beat Purdue - that certainly did not require the power of THE KNOWLEDGE to peek into the future
This week, everybody that has even a half brain knows that Michigan will beat Illinois - this doesn't require a revelation from THE KNOWLEDGE either
however, the actual game score is much harder to predict. THE KNOWLEDGE had mentioned last week that Michigan will easily defeat Purdue regardless of any irregularities in the spatio-temporal continuum, thus implying that the score will be one sided
many competitors in THE CHALLENGE 2012.3 took the clue and predicted a crushing defeat of the Boilers
THE KNOWLEDGE will formally congratulate the winners of this and previous editions as well as the current (2012.4) edition of THE CHALLENGE by awarding the POTW next week
the reason is rather simple: next week is a virtual bye week for Michigan, and we will have time to talk about other things than the insignificant challenge posed by the spartans from east lansing
as for this post, THE KNOWLEDGE is happy to reveal that the second discontinuity event reported in the previous post has occurred and the future is now clear
Michigan will finish the season 12-2
this is the same as the record in the original future, but the opponent to whom Michigan loses has obviously been changed
now, Michigan shall not lose another game this season, and will win the Rose Bowl
as usual, those that don't believe THE KNOWLEDGE will be left in the dust as THE KNOWLEDGE shall soar when this revelation is shown to be accurate when the progress of time makes the future the past
THE KNOWLEDGE CHALLENGE 2012.4 is now open. predict the correct score of the Michigan-Illinois game to be the POTW
pointers to the game:
- Michigan will score very many points, and win easily again
- Illinois will not score many points, and their coach will not chew tobacco on their sideline this time
Preseason Prediction (Which Is Looking A Little Better): Michigan will end the year with a +8 Turnover Margin (TOM) or better (2011 was +7). The prediction for TOM for M for this year is based on the prediction that M will be a very good team again this year and is not based on the actual TOM of last year. (Very good teams will have a TOM of +5 or better.)
Where Have All The Forced Fumbles Gone?: Yikes! M has only ONE forced fumble in 5 games. The opponents have basically dropped the ball (bad handoff, muffed KO, etc.,) another 9 times for a total of 10 opponent fumbles. It is, therefore, not really a surprise that M's recovery rate is a measly 40% because many of the unforced fumbles are in the backfield of the opponent with few M players around the ball. Last year M had 7 forced fumbles thru 5 games. Poor tackling, maybe? M is ranked #115 in forced fumbles.
Denard Robinson Interception %: This chart shows a comparison of Denard's Int% for 2011 and 2012. It is subdivided by out-of-conference (OOC) and Big Ten games because DRob did show marked improvement last year in his interception % over the final 9 games going from 8.3% in the first 4 games to 4.8% in the final 9 games. (BTW, average Int% for FBS is around 3.0%.)
As you can see, Denard actually finished the OOC this year with a lower Int% than last year (still horrible, just slightly less horrible than last year). If he can get his Int% down to just average, we should all be dancing in the streets. The Purdue game was a great start as Denard did not throw an interception (he also did not throw an interception in the first conference game last year).
We got back to Meeeechigan football against Purdue with just 16 pass attempts and 54 rushing attempts. That is a 77% run play percentage and only 6 teams ran the ball more last week. In 2011 M was ranked #11 at 65% run play %. M is now ranked #15 with a 62% run play % (M was ranked #31 with just a 57% run play % prior to the Purdue game).
Synopsis for Turnovers: With a TOM for the game of +3, M improved to – 4 TOM for the year (ranked #97).
M added 2 interceptions gained (Gordon & Taylor both got their second interception) for a total of 4 interceptions and is ranked #54. M recovered 2 fumbles for a total of 4 for the year (ranked #52). The total of 10 interceptions lost is ranked at #119. DRob did lose a fumble but the total of just 2 lost fumbles is ranked #14.
The folks at Football Outsiders – FEI are also doing weekly "Revisionist Box Scores" that strips out TOs, Special Teams, and Field Position. FEI calculates the value generated by each drive and then lost on the drive up until the turnover, as if the drive had concluded at that spot on the field. Thru Week #6, here is their summary:
(See the Section on Gory Details below for how the adjustment for Expected Points (EP) is calculated.)
National Rankings:M improved significantly. All rankings include games between two FBS teams ONLY and are from TeamRankings except for forced fumbles which is from CFBStats. The four columns with *** show the best correlation to offense and defense (per Advanced NFL stats).
The Gory Details
Details for Turnovers: Here is overall summary for all games by player (data in yellow was affected by this week's game).
Expected Point (EP) Analysis: Basically, the probability of scoring depends on the line of scrimmage for the offense. Therefore, the impact of a TO also depends on the yard line where the TO is lost and the yard line where the TO is gained. Each turnover may result in an immediate lost opportunity for the team committing the TO and a potential gain in field position by the opponent. Both of these components can vary dramatically based upon the down when the TO occurred, the yards the TO is returned, and whether the TO was a fumble or an interception.
Here are the details for the game.
The analysis is a bit tricky because: (A) the TO may directly result in lost EP for the offense but (B) only modifies the EP for the team gaining the TO because the team gaining the TO would have gotten another possession even without the TO (due to a punt, KO after a TD, KO after a field goal, etc.). The Net EP Gain must take into account the potential EP gain without the TO. The EP gain without the turnover is based on where the field position would have been for the next possession if the TO had not occurred.
The expected point calculations are based on data from Brian Fremeau at BCFToys (he also posts at Football Outsiders). Fremeau's data reflects all offensive possessions played in 2007-2010 FBS vs. FBS games. I "smoothed" the actual data.
Here is a summary of the smoothed expected points.
Ok, so after a week that saw me put up a wallpaper in the eleventh hour before the game, I decided to make sure I got this out earlier. Poor Illinois, they're so bad this year it's like men versus boys this coming Saturday - hence, this wallpaper idea. I know it's not totally original, but the Illini are just that uninspiring an opponent. I also didn't necessarily want to wander down the path of the non-politically correct Native American references. Anyway, as usual, I appreciate your comments and insights. Also, should you have any ideas for other designs for this week or the coming weeks, let me know. I am somewhat happy with the little Michigan field logo I created to house the team logos. Enjoy!
[bump: we got guys yo]
This might be one of those things that's cool only to me, but the chart below depicts the current rankings of prospects in the class of 2013. I used 247's composite rankings, which combine those from 247, Rivals, Scout, and ESPN. Each colored sliver represents a committed recruit. The total number of commitments for each program is provided next to the school's name.
I've binned these by 50s, so there's some rounding going on. Basically, if you look under the "1" on top, you'll see a sliver for every player ranked 1-50 in the national composite rankings. OSU has four of those, Penn State has two, and we have one (Morris). The last group ("1001+") represents recruits ranked 1000 or lower or, in almost all cases, unranked recruits.
I had to be creative with the rankings for a few recruits (e.g., JC guys), but I just figured out where their ratings would place them on the regular high school recruit scale.
A few of my observations:
Big two, little ten. For real. Those two programs are drawing from an entirely part of the distribution from the rest of the Big Ten programs.
These group together pretty nicely. It looks like there are basically three tiers. The top tier is Michigan and OSU. The second tier is Nebraska, Wisconsin, Penn State (for now at least), MSU, and Iowa. Then there's everyone else.
- Someone should make sure that Minnesota's planning to continue its football program. One key ingredient for a football program: football players. Minnesota, you might want to get a few of those.