Mike Lantry, 1972
Before we dive into the details, here are some things that you should know so that you can understand what’s below better:
1. * : When you see an asterisk by a number, know that it means that I included at least 1 Jr who I am projecting or has said that they will leave in those numbers. When you see a * by a name, it means that the player is a Jr projected to leave or is leaving.
2. 17 starters is the number that you want to return if you want to have at least the same amount of wins as the previous year. So the greatest number of starters that you would want to leave would be 5. After 5 starters leave, you expect to lose more games than the previous year. (Note: That number is from memory, I could not find the diary with that number so if someone could link to that in the comments, that would be great.)
3. I used the depth chart from each team’s Rivals site and the NFL draft projections from http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/draft/prospectrankings. If a player was around the top 3 at his position, I projected him to leave unless, obviously, he’s already said that he’s coming back.
Now for a chart, keep in mind that the numbers are in terms of players lost. Remember, losing more than 5 total starters is not a good thing. The chart breaks it down into lost starters on offense, defense and then total.
Continue on for a more in depth look at each team. This includes starters lost by position, list of each starter lost, some notes on back ups, notes on new coaches or leaving coaches, and other general observations on each team. After the draft, I will break down each team in terms of percentage of yards, TDs, tackles, interceptions, forced fumbles, etc. lost with each starter.
**If I didn't include a leaving starters, leaving/new coachs, or if someone I've included has said they're coming back to school, please let me know so that I can fix it.**
5 Starters lost: 1 RB*, 2 WR, 1 TE, 1 C
*Trent Richardson, RB
Darius Hanks, WR
Marquis Maze, WR
Brad Smelley, TE
William Vlachos, C
Quick Notes: Replacement TEs will be a true sophomore. Richardson is a top 5 pick and was a Heisman candidate, he’ll be tough to replace.
8 Starters lost: 1 NT, 3 LB*, 2 CB, 2 S*
Josh Chapman, NT
Jerrell Harris, LB
Courtney Upshaw, LB
*Dont’a Hightower, LB
*Dre Kirkpatrick, CB
DeQuan Menzie, CB
Mike Barron, S
*Robert Lester, S
Quick Notes: The talent Alabama will be losing is ridiculous. Everyone they’re losing will be playing in the NFL. At least half of them are ranked in the top 3 at their positions. Yeah, Alabama will replace that talent, but there is no way that the talent coming in is greater than the talent going out. 2 possible LB replacements will be JRs. The rest of the possible replacement LBs will be true sophomores.
Offensive Coordinator is leaving.
13 starters lost.
8 Starters lost: 1 QB, 1 RB, 2 WR, 1 TE, 1 C, 1 RG, 1 RT
Tim Jefferson, QB
Asher Clark, RB
Jonathan Warzeka, WR
Zack Kauth, WR
Joshua Freeman, TE
Jeffrey Benson, C
A.J. Wallerstein, RG
Kevin Whitt, RT
Quick Notes: Back Up QB is graduating too.
9 Starters lost: 2 DE, 1 NT, 3 LB, 2 CB, 1 S
Zach Payne, DE
Harry Kehs, DE
Ryan Gardner, NT
Jordan Waiwaiole, LB
Brady Amack, LB
Patrick Hennessey, LB
Anthony Wright, CB
Josh Hall, CB
Jon Davis, S
No Changes. (Note: These guys are going on to do something greater than playing football, a thank you to all of them and to everyone else serving.)
17 starters lost.
5 Starters lost: 1 RB, 3 WR, 1 TE
Jonathan Hernandez, RB
Tom Gilson, WR
Julian Talley, WR
Jesse Julmiste, WR
Emil Igwenagu, TE
3 Starters lost: 1 DT, 2 LB
James Gilchrist, DT
Tyler Holmes, LB
Shane Vivieros, LB
New head coach (Former ND OC). Also first year in the FBS.
8 starters lost.
4 starters lost: 1 WR, 1 OT, 1 OG, 1 C,
Michael Floyd, WR
Taylor Dever, OT
Trevor Robinson, OG
Mike Golic Jr., C
Quick Notes: You all know about the talent of Michael Floyd, and no, I’m not talking about drunk driving. Losing him is a huge, huge, huge loss for ND, especially with the QB questions that they have. It looks like the replacement OT and OG could be true sophomores.
6 starters lost: 1 DE, 1 LB, 2 CB, 2 S
Ethan Johnson, DE
Darius Fleming, LB
Gary Gray, CB
Robert Blanton, CB
Harrison Smith, S
Jamoris Slaughter, S
Quick Notes: Manti Te’o is returning. That’s huge for ND.
New Offensive Coordinator, RB coach, OL coach, and QB coach. Also Brian Kelly is still there.
3 Starters lost: 1 WR, 1 OT, 1 OG
Justin Siller, WR
Dennis Kelly, OT
Nick Mondek, OG
4 Starters lost: 1 DE, 1 LB, 2 S
Gerlad Gooden, DE
Joe Holland, LB
Albert Evans, S
Logan Link, S
7 starter lost.
4 Starters lost: 1 RB, 1 WR, 1 OT, 1 OG
Jason Ford, RB
A.J. Jenkins, WR
Jeff Allen, OT
Jack Cornell, OG
Quick Notes: A.J. Jenkins is a pretty big loss for Illinois.
4 Starters lost: 1 DE*, 2 LB, 1 CB
*Whitney Mercilus, DE
Trulon Henry, LB
Ian Thomas, LB
Tavon Wilson, CB
Quick Notes: Mercilus is the #3 DE, if he leaves, which is likely, it’ll be a huge loss for Illinois.
You know the deal with Zook, he’s gone so there’ll be a new HC and a new coaching staff.
8 starters lost.
6 starters lost: 1 QB, 2 WR, 1 OG, 1 FB, 1 RB*
Kirk Cousins, QB
B.J. Cunningham, WR
Keshawn Martin, WR
Joel Foreman, OG
Todd Anderson, FB
*Edwin Baker, RB
Quick Notes: Replacement QB will be a Jr or Sr. B.J. Cunningham is a beast, losing him really hurts. Replacements will be Arnett, providing the NCAA grants a waiver, or will be a Jr or a few sophomores. Losing Baker is another hit to MSU’s offense
2 starters lost: 1 DT*, 1 S
*Jerel Worthy, DT
Trenton Robinson, S
Quick Notes: Worthy’s back-up is graduating too. Robinson’s replacement will be a Jr or sophomore. The defense looks to be much the same as it was last year.
As of the time of this writing, rumors of Narduzzi to Texas A&M continue to run rampant. Losing him is huge.
8 starters lost.
2 starters lost: 1 OT, 1 C
J. Hardrick, OT
Mike Caputo, C
Quick Notes: Offense looks to be as potent as you can be with a QB who throws like a girl.
4 starters lost: 1 DT, 1 LB, 1 CB, 1 S
Jared Crick, DT
Lavonte David, LB
Alfonzo Dennard, CB
Austin Cassidy, S
Quick Notes: Nebraska loses their top 3 players on D. Tough to replace losses like that.
New DL coach.
6 starters lost.
7 starters lost: 1 RB, 1 WR, 1 FB, 1 TE, 2 OG, 1 C
Duane Bennett, RB
Da’Jon McKnight, WR
Eric Lair, FB
Collin McGarry, TE
Chris Bunders, OG
Ryan Orton, OG
Ryan Wynn, C
Quick Notes: Ouch.
6 starters lost: 2 DT, 1 LB, 1 CB, 2 S
Anthony Jacobs, DT
Brandon Kirksey, DT
Gary Tinsley, LB
Troy Stoudermire, CB
Shady Salamon, S
Kim Royston, S
Quick Notes: Ouch again. Minnesota looks to stay Minnesota.
13 starters lost.
6 starters lost: 1 QB, 2 RB, 1 WR, 1 OT, 1 OG
Dan Persa, QB
Jacob Schmidt, RB
Drake Dunsmore, RB
Jeremy Ebert, WR
Al Netter, OT
Ben Burkett, OG
Quick Notes: Losing Persa is pretty big but Colter filled in pretty well for him this year.
3 starters lost: 1 DT, 1 CB, 1 S
Jack DiNardo, DT
Jeravin Matthews, CB
Brian Peters, S
9 starters lost.
4 starters lost: 1 WR, 2 OT*, 1 OG,
Marvin McNutt, WR
*Riley Reiff, OT
Markus Zusevics, OT
Adam Gettis, OG
Quick Notes: Losing McNutt is pretty big for Iowa.
6 starters lost: 1 DE, 2 DT, 1 LB, 1 CB, 1 S
Broderick Binns, DE
Mike Daniels, DT
Thomas Nardo, DT
Tyler Nielsen, LB
Shaun Prater, CB
Jordan Bernstine, S
Quick notes: Defense looks to worsen with the loss of 6 starters and the DC.
New DL coach. New DC.
10 starters lost.
5 starters lost: 1 RB, 1 WR, 2 OT, 1 C
Dan Herron, RB
DeVier Posey, WR
Mike Adams, OT
J.B. Shugarts, OT
Michael Brewster, C
Quick Notes: New offense, new schemes, new plays, etc. Remember the offense without Posey and Herron? Couldn’t score if they were playing a middle school football team.. Remember the offense without Posey? Not much better. Now they’ll have a new offense without 3 new starters on the OL and without their 2 biggest playmakers on offense.
0 starters lost.
Quick Notes: The defense that we owned this year looks to be the same next year.
New HC, mostly new coaching staff.
5 starters lost.
Blah, blah, punching bag, blah...
I thought it was going to be easy, I didn't think it was going to be that easy. And while it might be fun for a little while, by the 2nd half it was kind of embarrassing and pointless; unless you're a second stringer. We got a glimpse of some of the younger players, so I guess that's good from a program standpoint, if not from a viewer's POV.
You had me at hello...
Ok, so maybe I hadn't ever heard of you before you got hired, Mr. Borges. But what you did on Saturday, well, I haven't smiled like that since 1947, and I wasn't even alive in 1947.
You found a way to effectively use two of our best (highest rated) players on the same play. You sowed confusion and hesitation into opposing players and DC's. You called a halfback pass that was freaking WIDE OPEN.
To be true, I was a little worried about some of the playcalling in the first halves of the previous games. But after demonstrating so much flexibility and creativity in that game, you've won me over.
My hat is off to you, sir.
It's the simple things ...
At its core, football is really just about blocking and tackling. Almost anyone can draw up a play (or copy it from someone else). But it really is about how well the players execute that makes the difference between good teams and bad teams. Of course, it is easier to execute when your guys are bigger, faster, and more talented.
Denard's first TD was a good playcall, but the blitzing OLB didn't take himself out of the play like he was supposed to.
He almost brings down Denard from behind.
But I'm really impressed with the increase in Denard's leg strength this year. He's broken through a lot more arm tackles than last season. Other than the blitzer, we've got a hat on a hat. It's up to the QB to make one man miss, and he does, because he's awesome.
And the highest praise I can give a WR is to note when they sustain blocks downfield. Here we've got three guys making me think good things about them.
This next play is a type of sprint draw to Shaw
The blocking is setup perfectly by the fake and there's a wall to the outside.
Unfortunately Shaw misreads this great crackback block by Gallon and dances too much. He loses momentum and gets tackled for a modest gain. (more on this later)
When your players are too small, or slow, or confused to execute properly, you end up looking like Gophers.
The Minny O-line has actually gotten their assignments correct and have a small crease opened up. The pulling linemen has to choose which of the run-blitzers he needs to pick up.
He chose ... poorly. And the rest of our front seven collapse the hole.
And when you've got guys like Mike Martin and Will Campbell that can just run over people, that's nice.
If you're wondering who was supposed to block BWC, it's that lump of white that RVB is trampling over while he drives his own blocker into the backfield.
That looks painful.
So underneath all the fancy chalk talk, it really helps to have guys that can win one on one battles, and go to the correct places. It's all just blocking, tackling, and misdirection.
And throwing to guys who are wide open.
And throwing to guys who are wide open.
The RB Committee.
At this point in the season, Fitz and Vince have clearly established themselves as options #1 and #2 on the depth chart. I think Fitz can be that everydown back we need, but we'll have to see how well he holds up against non-laughable bigten defenses. With his TD trifecta, Vince just proved he's not a runningback. Vincent Smith is just a football player. And a damn good one.
Shaw... step into my office son. As a senior, you should be a team leader. You have track star speed. Your ball security has dramatically improved from the RR era. And we can really tell that you run with great effort and determination. But dude, STOP DANCING. You're not a dancer.
You're wasting all that great speed because during the time that you should be accelerating, you're two footing around in the backfield. You're not setting up and reading your blockers well enough. And you're still lacking that certain leg strength to run through arm tackles.
When someone grabs Denard's jersey, he runs so hard that the jersey rips away. You looked like someone hooked a towing cable to your bumper.
You've got a lot of potential. But just cut down on the moves. Make one cut and get upfield. Or better yet, make one cut and race fools to the sideline. Chris Perry made a career of that. And learn to fall forward fergodsakes. Instead of trying to dance around the tackler, deliver a blow and fall forward. If we really are going to play man ball, the difference between a 3.3 ypc average and 4.0 ypc average caused by simply falling forward is going to be a big deal.
And that goes for all the youngsters too.
Hopkins looks like he might have a bright future as a B.J. Askew-esque FB. It's just Minnesota, but he got one of those fabled 'double blocks' that all FB's dream about. And he seems to catch the ball pretty well.
And we learned a little bit about Rawls, albeit in garbage time. Early returns show good balance, decent speed, but not terribly explosive or shifty. He kinda reminds me of Kevin Grady, but not quite as chiseled. Let's just say he's got a low aspect ratio for a tailback. Looks pretty strong around the thighs and midsection. I'm thinking he could eat himself into a starring FB role in a year or two.
- If Denard is called "Shoelace", maybe Devin can be called "Shoeless"
- The FG kicking is quietly becoming a non-ulcer-inducing facet of our team.
- However, the kickoff coverage still sucks, I'm so glad we got to practice 11 of them this game.
- I really like it when crowd's continue to sing a song after the band/PA system has to cut off. But there's a time and place for it. Livin' on a Prayer should be reserved for something like near the end of a close Redwings game where the line "We're halfway there" makes sense. Leading by 40+ in the third quarter calls for something more like "Sweet Caroline" because "Good time never felt so good." (Even if it is cliche')
Burst of Impetus
* This is the section where I discuss turnovers and other momentum changing plays. There was one burst of impetus in this game. Minnesota kicked off to start the game. That's it. They were never in it. I bet that "adjusted winning percentage" diary shows us pegged at 100% for the duration.
* For those that care, the turnovers were Mich: 0, Minn: 2. It's always nice to win the turnover battle, even if the team you are playing would be in danger of being relegated FROM the MAC. Notice, I wrote "from" and not "to". I think Minnesota would have trouble competing in the MAC this year and would be relegated to some FCS conference. I understand their starting QB was out, but they didn't do anything right all day.
Trash Cans Full of Dirt
* Craig Roh had a nice tackle early in the game for no gain. Later in the game, he had a tackle for a loss of 1 yard. The difference between these two tackles? One yard. He also gets credit in the box score for the latter, but not the former. When the box score starts including advanced defensive statistical metrics, I'd like to see them have TFNGs, for tackle for no gain. They are almost as important as the TFL, and way more important than the TWDF (tackle way down field.)
* The leading tacklers were Roh, Demens, and Countess with 5 each. That is such a wonderful sentence to write. The defense was only on the field for 47 plays. That's what happens when you hold a team to 0 for 11 on 3rd down conversions.
* 25 players showed up in the defensive stats section. Black, Van Bergen, and Ryan each recorded a sack. That's one less than we had so far this season. I know we played a couple run teams, but I like when the pressure leads to sacks as well as hurried throws.
Hexadecimal Points (HT: Number 7)
* Our helmets have wings! They also have numbers! If RR was still the coach, I shudder to think of the resulting outrage. It would certainly bring down the interwebz. I'm going to give Brady a pass on this because apparently the players asked for it, and it's their team.
* I would love to see 7A on Hawthorne's helmet. That's how he's listed in the defensive stats. M. Cavanaugh also shows up as 2H.
San Diego 49ers
* Our wide receivers have stats this week. Whoo-hoo! Hemingway had 5 catches and Gallon had 4.
* When Chris Martin of B1G Network fame tried to describe Denard, he said the best way to categorize him was "filthy." We finally got the game in which Denard's carries were limited. He rushed only 6 times for 51 yards. He made us all breathe a little more easily by going 15-19 through the air. (That sound you just heard was the rest of the B1G cursing.)
* Vincent Smith was also filthy, with a TD running, receiving, and throwing. He was named the Hardest Working Player," by the B1G Network. (For some reason, this reminds me of the old "Taco Bell Unsung Player Award" they used to have during Pistons broadcasts. It rotated between Rodman and Salley, until they were both Sung Players.) In my opinion, the hardest working man was Michael Schofield. Due to our lack of depth along the O-Line, he played the whole way. I think he must have had 20 more snaps than anyone else. That is a hard working player. I thought that the way we controlled the ball, we must have run 100 plays like Indiana did to us last year. Nope, only 73. Lots of runs keeps the clock moving. Still, yeoman work by Schofield. (Yeoman, that's a good thing, right?)
There are a lot of pictures this week because of the blowout. A lot of guys played that wouldn't normally be on the field so I tried to include them. Hope you all enjoy! Go Blue!!
So I usually do not post a wallpaper until the end of the week. I try to get the time to work on it after the work that feeds the family is done. Last week I had a few people state that they really wish I had the wallpaper done at the beginning of the week so it could be enjoyed leading up to the game.
Blue Indy quickly agreed to get his work out a little quicker and was bumped in points so he could create content. Just check a couple diaries (here) below this and you can see his work for this week, and the past weeks. He has done some great work for all of the non-rivalry games.
I felt a little pressure to produce something and after taking in the Cowboys/Redskins game (my first ever NFL game) I was struggling to get some sleep. I thought it was a great opportunity to be productive and get something done.
My original idea was to take a good looking gopher and give it a Michigan branding. I was struggling to get a truly good "burn" look into the fur without it just being poorly done. The more I thought about it I figured Michigan does not really need to brand Minnesota and then there came a better idea. It's Minnesota and really deep down in their hearts they want to be a Michigan. I think every Golden Gopher fan, when no one is looking, really shows their secretive desire to be a wolverine... so much that they have the tattoo to prove it.
The picture is far from perfect but at least it is done earlier in the week.
Game's being played in a Big Ten stadium in a snowstorm on turf thats allegedly frozen stiff.
Brett Favre is starting! Adrian Peterson is out.
8:30 ET/5:30 PT Kickoff on ESPN. All the Jon Gruden, Ron Jaworski, and Mike Tirico you can handle. And then some.