landing spot. will be interesting to see how he does.
[Ed-M: Semi-official 'cause we asked him to do this after he provided a great recap last week on the board]
This is just me listening to the podcasts and typing up what I find interesting; it's not a word-for-word transcript.
Offense. Wondering how little the offense will show Saturday. Will they stay just I-form all day? Last year's offense is not new so it's not like they need to practice that. Maybe that's the "vanilla" offense and they will save the I-form power play till ND. Hoke: First play will probably power! Brian sighs. Brian doesn't like "here it is, try and stop it" mentality.
Brian's tradition the first week is to watch Miss St. play a team with a horrid pass defense and still throw 6 INTs (but won't happen this year with Mullen). Talking about Michigan playing its first game during the week (App St on Thursday, for instance). Brian opposed because Michigan can get Saturday ABC time even when it's not a marquee game.
Jordan Jefferson bar fight. What are players doing in a bar during fall camp? Brian says we dodged bullet by not hiring Miles. Miami suspensions; some guys only out 1 game. Penalties fair vs. Ohio St. five game suspensions? NCAA has set list of number of games suspended vs. amount of money taken. Miami players had to talk in order to maintain eligibility. No one pulling a Dez Bryant and not talking; doesn't bode well for Miami's long-term future.
Brian's article on home-and-home matchups with marquee teams, and how it doesn't cost much to do it. Two bodybag games vs. home-and-home; $2.60 per ticket would cover it. Maybe Michigan shouldn't do it right now due to roster stability, but future would be good to see them play teams they usually don't see. Mention of next year's challenging schedule with Bama and Air Force. Brian would much rather have a home-and-home with Bama instead of a one-off in JerryWorld. Brian wants to see real games against opponents we don't see. Remembering the 90s with playing Colorado, Boston College, etc. All about the money now.
Craig Ross in now. Offense question marks. Shaw/Fitz at RB? Craig doesn't think it will just be one back and it will still be 4 guys playing. Really 5 guys including Denard. RB the one position group that doesn't have a clean slate when new coaches come in? Some talk about decision process among the new coaches. Talk about how new coaches making the same wrong decisions that RR did; Gibbons being PK and Gallon being kickoff returner, and how everybody was fed up with Gallon fumbling last year and Gibbons' kicking. Coaches figuring out who can actually play in games vs. just practice. Gallon didn't drop any in practice despite balls being kicked all over the place. Impact of new special team drills.
First call. Placekicking/Gibbons. Does he stay on scholarship if he struggles? Yes; we are not Alabama. Michigan will commit to him for four years regardless. Comparison to SEC with how we can have a kid on scholarship that has walk-ons ahead of him, and he can still be on the team despite just practicing and "being a part of the team." In SEC he would be forced to transfer.
Second call. How is Devin Gardner doing? How many reps will he have? Will depend a lot on the defense. Gardner has looked OK, but have to see. Craig says Gardner is better than last year but Denard obviously unquestioned #1.
The Hoke Friday walkthrough; Friday practice at 5pm. Not a hitting practice, just supposed to be an "intense walkthrough," a little more physical, should work up a sweat. No hitting, though.
Jake Ryan progress. Was 3-3-5 OLB, in this defense SLB does get to do vertical attacking/blitzing, but he needs to cover better. Cam Gordon ahead in the coverage department. Maybe Ryan a designated passing-down blitzer. Weird 3-man line formation with Martin getting moved to 7-tech Shawn Crable-esque position on passing downs for pass rush. Not abnormal for Greg Mattison; did it at Baltimore. Ryan had good camp; potential there if Cam Gordon struggles. Mattison stressing that he'll play a lot of guys in the front seven. BWC at NT? Brian skeptical; should be at 3-tech, but don't need to relieve RVB because RVB plays the whole game. Hard for Campbell to get playing time. How close is the defense to having a fully-rotatable two-deep with 22 guys? Brian says they have 15-16: the starters plus Jake Ryan, JT Floyd, Carvin Johnson, Nate Brink, and maybe Black. Don't have any solid depth at DT, MIKE, or WILL. Maybe Countess can backup at corner. Craig says they don't want a lot of rotation in the secondary (aside from nickel package), should just be the front seven rotating. Brian still big on Avery improving.
Is Western a good test for the defense? Should be interesting to see if they can get QB pressure. Western has two backup guards (and backup center?) playing.
Game predictions. Brian: 36-15 (12 FGs!). Craig thinks we'll cover. Ira looks back to how 2004 was the last time things went as predicted. Can't predict which is the hardest of the 3 rivalry games. USF vs. ND. Brian thinks BJ Daniels is awful; ND shouldn't have trouble. Boise St. vs. Georgia, LSU vs.Oregon. Brian thinks LSU will get crushed, will be in chaos on offense. Craig thinks Boise St. will win. Brian thinks Georgia.
1) Despite heavy fan resistance, advertising will enter the Big House after David Brandon agrees to let a Domino's Pizza operate in the north endzone.
2) Citing the commitment of a moon rock, Michigan State will point to its new found focus on intergalactic recruiting.
3) Tate Forcier will finally manage to get his act together at SJSU. Unfortunately, his act will consist entirely of shop lifting and smoking Black and Milds.
4) Mike Martin will win this year's Royal Rumble in dramatic fashion after he flips Sgt. Slaughter over the top rope.
5) NCAA investigators will begin sniffing around Minnesota's football program after they suspiciously manage to win 5 games.
6) The Big Ten will shock the world when they announce that National Taiwan University will be its 13th member starting in the 2014 season.
7) Realizing they are losing an arms race, Nebraska will begin airing ads on the Big Ten Network in mid-October touting their University as a place where robots are built, breakthroughs in prosthetic limb engineering achieved, third world energy crisis solved, and the spirit of the students, faculty, and staff are embodied in its many Division 1 athletic endeavors.
8) After euro-zone troubles send the Dow tumbling and the price of gold past $2000/oz, David Brandon will buckle and sell Denard Robinson to a group of Saudi investors.
9) Will Campbell will finally emerge as force to be reckoned with. He will destroy records previously thought untouchable and leave a champion. All of this will take place at Mongolian Barbeque next Wednesday afternoon.
10) Ohio State will win the Leaders division and square off against Nebraska in the inaugural Big Ten Championship game. However, they will be forced to take the field as Wisconsin after it's discovered that the players have sold off every last one of their uniforms to Jeb Huntley of Sylvania, OH.
St. Ed's O-Line (minus Kalis). Duane Long's Top Ten doesn't have room for all of them. (Image: Lonnie Timmons | Cleveland.com)
This is an addendum to Ace's Thursday Recruiting today. In that post Ace noted he was worried Long's prO-hio biases might have led him to leave some important future Wolverines off the list:
Meanwhile, Duane Long has rated 11-50 of his top 50 prospects in Ohio [parts 1, 2, 3, and 4], and here's the Michigan commits included so far: Tom Strobel (12), Pharaoh Brown (17), Jarrod Wilson (18), Joe Bolden (26), A.J. Williams (31), and Caleb Stacey(48). That means Kyle Kalis and Chris Wormley are almost assuredly in his top ten, but it'll be interesting to see if Kaleb Ringer and Allen Gant make the cut or are (unjustifiably, in my somewhat-biased opinion) left off the list entirely. For context, the #50 prospect, Mason Monheim, is unrated on Rivals and holds offers from Illinois and a handful of MAC schools.
Here's a list of guys rated highly by Rivals who did not make the Top 50 (yet):
|Kyle Kalis||OL||St. Edward||****||Michigan|
|Se'von Pittman||DE||McKinley||****||Michigan State|
|Josh Perry||LB||Olentangy||****||Ohio State|
|Kyle Dodson||OL||Cleveland Heights||****||Wisconsin|
|Warren Ball||RB||St. Francis DeSales||****||Ohio State|
|Bri'onte Dunn||RB||Glenoak||****||Ohio State|
|Chris Davis||ATH||Austintown Fitch||***||Pittsburgh|
|Demitrious Davis||ATH||Austintown Fitch||***||Pittsburgh|
|Allen Gant||DB||Sylvania Southview||***||Michigan|
|Anthony Stanko||OL||Howland||***||Penn State|
|Sam Grant||TE||St. Edward||***||Boston College|
|Ryan Leahy||DE||La Salle||***||Cincinnati|
|Greg Kuhar||DT||St. Edward||***||Northwestern|
|Tyler Orlosky||OL||St. Edward||***||West Virginia|
|T.C. Klusman||OL||Elder High School||***||Louisville|
|Ross Martin||K||Walsh Jesuit||***||Duke|
Thats' 26 dudes with BCS offers and whatnot. Long has 6 guys in his Top 50 who aren't rated by Rivals yet. Those guys and their offers:
|Name||Long's Rk||Pos||Best offers|
|DeShawn Dowdy||27||WR/TE||WVa., Cincy, Iowa St|
|James Sanford||34||DB||MSU, Cincy, BG|
|Eric Williams||37||QB||Cincy, Toledo, EMU|
|Terrell Jackson||42||DE||Duke, CMU, Ohio (NTO)|
|Mason Monheim||50||LB||Illinois, Miami (NTM), Akron|
Dawson is a legit freak athlete none of the sites (Scout, ESPN, 247) have heard of except Rivals, and they little more than his name. Scouting Ohio lists his deeds as a running back, but Long is excited about him as a DT. I couldn't find any schools that offered since he apparently has grade issues that will likely see him head to a JUCO and reemerge at some SEC school in 2 years. The rest have maybe one BCS offer (if you count the Big East as BCS). This is the level one must pass to be in the Top 50. If you might fit that description, you are not in the Top 50. That about does it for Klusman, Kuhar, Leahy, Draper, S.Smith, and A.Jones. Spencer, Anthony Stanko and the Austintown Finch athlete Davis duo might have an argument for Top 30 but not Top 10.
Mortal Locks: (3) Ifeadi Odenigbo, Kyle Kalis, Bri'onte Dunn. Each were mentioned in reviews of the other guys in a context of almost/just as good as...
Almost Certainly: (3) Se'Von Pittman, Adolphus Washington, Greg McMullen. Long has been all-up-on's for these guys all year. They are consistently rated the tops in their respective positions, or near enough to it because they all play the same position (...as Wormley and Odenigbo too)
Because it's Long you know he'll have: (2) Warren Ball, Josh Perry. Two more 4-star guys committed to Ohio State. Eight other OSU commits (every one but Pat Elflein) have already been profiled, and Ball, Perry and Dunn (see mortal locks) are OSU's three most highly rated recruits this year.
"Is _____ better than a MAC player?"
Why: He's the last consensus 4-star not among the pretty.
Why not: Ohio State and Michigan passed on Mount Dodson -- Wisconsin likes road graders but Long does not necessarily share that opinion.
Is he better than a MAC player: Absolutely.
Why: Long once said Grant might be the best among the St Ed's group, which includes Kalis and previously profiled Darryl Render.
Why not: The nice things slowed when the Ohio State offer didn't materialize.
Is he better than a MAC player: Probably.
Why: Long has long had Ringer listed as his top linebacker in Ohio.
Why not: Concerns about his size. Wolverine.
Is he better than a MAC player: Absolutely
Why: As of March made Long's 1st team All-Ohio, ahead of Pittman and McMullen; Washington was starting SDE.
Why not: Wolverine.
Is he better than a MAC player: Uh....
Why: Most sites rate Gant higher than Bradley.
Why not: Wolverine. Son of Wolverine. Long may think Sylvania is part of Michigan. Also it's almost certain Gant won't make the Top 10 because Bradley's writeup called Bam the second-best safety in the class, and Jarrod Wilson was placed above him.
Better than a MAC player: Pretty sure.
Why: He's a really good QB
Why not: Long has been pretty consistently leaving Mauk off lists since last year.
Better than a MAC player: Probably.
Why: Like Grant a St. Ed's guy ahead of Render. Long called Orlosky "the most underrated lineman in the state" and put him 2nd team at both guard positions ahead of #44 Jacoby Boren (YTB), but behind Michigan's Stacey (48) and MSU's McGowan (14).
Why not: Behind #48 means out of the running.
Better than a MAC player: Yes.
Why: Might be the best kicker prospect in the country this year
Why not: Is a kicker
Better than a MAC player: Yes.
Best guess is Wormley almost has to get one spot unless Long has found a reason to hate him (other than committing to Michigan). Ringer is a good bet for the last one, being the top LB in the state and all. That still leaves Gant off the list. However there's plenty of reason to think some of these other guys might take their places, especially Dodson and Grant. That could mean some of M's recruits are slipping, or that I just need to learn to take Duane Long lists with a Bleacher Report serving of salt.
Anthony Standifer (right) goes in for a tackle [photo credit: Debra Edwards | The Commercial-News]
2012 defensive back commit Anthony Standifer is regarded as one of the hidden gems of Brady Hoke's current recruiting class. The Crete-Monee (IL) product is coming off an eight-tackle performance in the Warriors's 32-8 season-opening victory over Thornton Fractional South. Standifer leads a talented team that includes highly touted junior receiver Laquon Treadwell, and as he says in the following interview, he hopes to take home a state title for the Warriors after they bowed out in the third round of the playoffs last season. Here's what Anthony had to say about his goals, recruitment, and his teammate Treadwell when I caught up with him:
ACE: What have you been doing to prepare for this season? Anything different from past years now that you're a senior and you know you'll be playing in college?
ANTHONY: I've been watching game film, working out with the team and on my own, and I've been studying the other team more.
ACE: You went from being an under-the-radar recruit to choosing between Michigan and Notre Dame pretty quickly. What was that experience like for you?
ANTHONY: It was a good experience. Sometimes I liked the attention, some of the time I didn't, but i just took it day by day and made the best decision.
ACE: Your teammate Laquon Treadwell is getting a lot of attention, including from Michigan, for the class of 2013. How has he looked this fall, and have you been trying to recruit him to Ann Arbor at all? Are there any other players you've been in contact with?
ANTHONY: He has been doing real good. He keeps progressing and he knows just as much as I do about Michigan, and I'm not pressuring him to make a decision.
ACE: What are your goals for your senior season, both for yourself and for Crete-Monee?
ANTHONY: Win [the state championship], and get more interceptions and tackles than I did last year [44 tackles and nine interceptions].
Thanks to Anthony for taking the time to answer my questions. You can follow him on Twitter, username Freakyy_Chewyy (your guess is as good as mine on that one).
Today, I go to grad school in Austin and I am witnessing the preparation for the football season at the school that is 34 wins behind Michigan. I am supremely indifferent about the Longhorn Network, Memorial Stadium, and finding a tailgate spot for Saturday’s game against Rice. Texas football? Meh, I don’t care. Though the name is "neither Greek, Latin, nor English, [but merely] a piece of language gone mad.", The Clan of Catholepistemiadis my birthright. MGoBlog is my homepage and although I don’t have a clue about the stats and all that smart people stuff, my weeks in the fall are determined on Saturdays and have been for as long as I can remember.
My fandom begins on a cold January night 25 years ago and although I have no recollection, my first pair of shoes were blue and gold Nikes from Mast’s shoe in Ann Arbor. Growing up near the Fife family, my shoes were destined to walk over as a little neighborhood kid playing 500 with Dugan, Jeremy and Dane throwing to all of us kids. My earliest Michigan memory – where I went to bed sobbing- with Dugan as a freshman was Webber in New Orleans. For a 7 year-old staying up until 10 PM was huge, but watching Michigan was my obsession from then on.
There were happy moments as kid: 1997 - A friend’s birthday party seeing #2’s interception against MSU, A cold gray November Cub Scout camping trip listening to the punt return against Ohio St, screaming that December when he won the Heisman, having my first kiss at halftime of the Rose Bowl. Charles Woodson is my 11 year-old idol. I was even more hooked after that. Buying all the Michigan T-shirts with the Tasmanian devil in Maize and Blue, “Michigan Football is Life, The Rest is just details”, and best of all a #2 jersey. As I look back as a kid, the events of my life are all remembered in context to Michigan games. That year is special to me just because of how old I was. If I was five years younger or five years older, the impact of that season would not have been imprinted on my sports soul.
Getting the thick envelope in the fall of my senior year of high school, my dreams were realized. I was going to moving to my personal Valhalla. Approaching my freshman year, I had no one living to counsel me about life at Michigan as all of my family is all either a Chippewa or a Spartan. My long passed grandfather was kicked out of Michigan after one semester after WWII for driving his blue Packard onto the lawn of DKE and yelling for his brother-in-law to come down out of the house. My uncle who had died the year before I started school was a huge Michigan fan, but lived far from me and that resource was gone as well. I got a lot of his things including a CD with Hail to the Victors, which I played constantly during the 2003 Oregon game assuming that his spirit on the track would somehow allow Michigan to win a regular season West Coast game. Yet again, more Michigan misfortune.
Things were never the same after that trip to Eugene. Rumors about Lloyd’s health. Chris Webber in federal court. Tommy Amaker. Antonio Bass’ knee. My freshman, sophomore against Ohio St. Football Armageddon. Bo gone. Freep Derp. My senior year was the worst. The Horror, Oregon, Losing Chad, Wisconsin, and Ohio St. The rain, the score, Tressel: it all was a massive dong punch. Many people in red were on the business end of curses as I cried leaving Michigan Stadium being the first class since the 1930’s to go all four years without beating them. I was most upset for Mike, Chad, Jake and Mario. They never will get their due.
I blamed Lloyd. He always turtled. It was time for a change. It was peanut butter jelly time. I was excited. Up until the last 3 years, I remembered the losses more than the wins. But, I longed for old Michigan. The Michigan of my childhood. Maybe that’s the only place it still exists.
I was on a cruise ship during the end of “The Process” paying like $4.00 a minute to find out wtf was going on. I almost choked on my own puke when I saw Brady’s name as the choice, but then I hear him speak. Wow. I was hooked again. Then I thought to myself, “Are we Notre Dame?”. I guess that remains to be seen. Hoke is what is needed and he seems to have luck or the Devil working right alongside with him. The first question that they should have asked Hoke comes straight from Cypher asking Neo:
"So, you're here to save the world? ... What do you say to something like that?"
It’s about wins and losses, but it is obvious more than that that. It’s about the seniors this year who were being recruited when I was a senior. It’s about covering the scars of past three falls. It’s about the dilithium of the nicest quarterback who I’m so proud of. It’s about once again, putting the end of pin into the reset button of this whole thing, holding down for 10 seconds, and seeing what happens. I’m sick and tired of emo. I’m ready to savor the tribal glow once more.
Back by popular demand, or maybe entirely despite it, I return for my third year providing your weekly primer in what not to watch. Last year, no team pulled off the shutout, but 12 teams had 2 or fewer wins. Welcome to the list, Memphis. Elsewhere, New Mexico managed to go 1-11 and not finish last in their conference. The mighty MAC had no less than 4 teams with two wins or less. So without further ado, let's get into it.