rundown of Michigan's riser
I didn't have internet for the past week, so I'm getting to this diary pretty late. Almost everything that occurred to me has already been said. But here's a few things that stood out and could use repeating if you have already heard it.
This is why you don't teach players to only play strongside or only play weakside.
A single shift into an unbalanced line made 6 of our guys change position. I feel like this calls for some joke about Chinese fire drills, but it's too easy. If the motion man hadn't taken the jet sweep and actually realigned on the other side, I wonder if those 6 guys would have been thinking about flopping back. Ugh... ...
Our defense is still young and has a lot to learn. We're a year or two (or three) away from being able to shut down serious opponents.
Vincent looked good, I still worry about his durability. There are some indications that ND's D-line and scheme are legitimately good against the run. So this might not be as bad as we fear. My hopes are still on Fitz to be the main workhorse until someone younger distinguishes himself. Looks like we'll be RB by committee for the rest of this year.
What about Denard?
Good thing: Denard is still awesome running the ball against weaker competition
Bad thing: We were forced to run Denard against a middling' MAC team
Good thing: Denard is getting better at getting out of bounds without taking a big hit
Bad thing: Several times he ran into a NT, DT sandwich
Good thing: The return of QB dive TROLOLOLOLO!!!! (Brian "QB draw-OH NOES!" is a great name, but it's not a draw fake, it's a dive fake.)
Bad thing: Bubble screens still MIA
MSU @ ND notes
- The game was closer than the score reflected. MSU failed a fake FG and got intercepted in the redzone, ND had a kickoff return TD. ND still wins handedly, but probably only by one score or 10 points instead of 18.
- MSU's O-line has big problems. This is not news to anyone. But I think it's showing up in some of their playcalling.
For example, they used this weird formation
And then they pitched the ball around the short side TE/Guard. It's like they don't trust their interior linemen, so they might as well try to run away from the muck. (sometimes with a pulling lineman)
There's a reason why people don't normally line up like this. It's not usually effective.
- Wood's first TD was not a TD.
First of all, there was a blatant holding at the point of attack,
And he was down at the 1 yard line anyway.
- Bawk! Bawk! Dantonio.
It's 4th and 17 at midfield, down two touchdowns with 4 and half minutes left in the game. And he decided to PUNT. C'mon, after last (last) week, we know that 4 minutes against ND is time enough for at least 6 touchdowns.
- Nick Hill on Kick Returns
He looked good at finding the hole and they had some designed returns to break off to one side of the wedge. This dishearteningly matches up with one of our weaknesses.
- It's all about stopping Cunningham
They still have the triplets at RB. But with the issues they have with the O-line, Cunningham becomes the key to stopping MSU.
- Cousins is still a good QB, but I feel like we can trick him into a couple of INT's.
He likes to throw the crossing routes to the WR. And in the hurry-up, they seemed to favor square-ins and slants. ND stepped in front for a couple of picks and tips. Cousins is very good at throwing the checkdown and hitting late leakers from the backfield. And all the backs seemed to be good at making them selves available after scraping past the rushers.
MSU likes to call a fair number of screens and draws, but these are hard to do well for inexperienced linemen.
Pure Michigan parody guy finally hits MSU. Although he claims he's not a MSU alum, this is pretty complementary compared to his other videos.
It's a slow week with football not quite going yet, so I thought I'd pose a question to the board that has been occupying my brain since this whole OSU thing began and media members began talking about whether the NCAA was obsolete or not. Here goes:
In the not-so-distant future, schools run amok. Programs realize that after OSU got off with a wrist-slap, their program can do whatever it wants, as long as they deny knowledge of it. College athletics descend into anarchy. Teams no longer follow NCAA rules, making the NCAA obsolete.
Schools begin joining a separate entity from the NCAA, a new governing body of college athletics. While the NCAA was formed on the basis of amateurism, the new regime is only interested in one thing—money. None of the old rules will apply, including being allowed to pay players, and boosters are allowed to run amok.
Slowly schools pull away from the NCAA, beginning with those on probation, and moving through the SEC, spreading northward. Not all schools decide to leave—some of the more academically oriented schools want to continue to do things the right way. They decide to stay with the NCAA. The fear is that these programs will dissipate into oblivion when the new, money-laden, high-octane counter to the NCAA gets up and going.
The dispute moves north to Ohio, where OSU decides that they can be a lot more successful if they are able to pay players up front without worrying about tattoo parlors or car dealers blowing the whistle. Ohio U, however, does not have the money or prestige to make the move. The new governing body continues to leave small schools in its wake.
After picking up most of the SEC, Big 12, and a few schools from the Big 10, they move on to Michigan. State has already caved, moving to the protective wing of the new structure, and hopes that Michigan will follow suit so that they can keep getting blasted by Blue on a yearly basis. The commissioner calls Dave Brandon, and tells him if he wants to stay relevant in sports, and not turn in to an Ivy League school, UM must join the new governing body. He asks the fans what they would prefer through an on-line forum.
So, gents, here is my question: if the above scenario did occur, and Michigan had to choose between these 2 options, which would it be:
1.) Stay with the NCAA. This forfeits any sort of possibility of future championships on a national level, but will allow Michigan to continue to do things the right way. They become the equivalent of an Ivy League school with regard to sports.
2.) Drop the NCAA like it’s hot. We begin paying players, working with boosters, and forfeiting our century-long heir of superiority over other schools. We continue to be relevant in the national landscape, but our academic reputation takes a huge hit.
From the Twitter:
MSUAD Mark Hollis
EDIT: Hollis is now backing off from his previous promotion of the Jersey Shore star, by claiming he just bought a ticket and it has nothing to do with MSU. (Didn't know he tracked tickets sales on a personal level.) Wow, make a bad decision to trumpet something embarrasing about your school and then lack the integrity to stand behind the decision? He makes Dave Brandon look like a genius.
(This is OT because someone else already suggested MSU threads should be that way right now.)
Could anyone use a 6'10" guy with 2 years eligibility left?
Actually, looks like he "realized" after a meeting with Izzo that his 3rd/4th on the depth chart was not looking good for him.... so long as you define "looking good" as tying up a roster spot that could really be used to re-stock the team next year...
Roll call for the game - I'll be there in the middle of the Maize Rage, yelling extra loud for all my friends watching from some bar next to some beach somewhere.
Say what you want about the "Superfan" and whatnot, but he just sent out an email to the Maize Rage that I thought was awesome:
Wolverines,If you bought a ticket, or somehow managed to scramble together a ticket last minute, I am sure you are pumped for this game. I just would like to emphasize what you already know, about how important this game is to both universities. We are both on the bubble, regardless of what any journalist says my opinion is that without a big run in the tournament there is no way the loser of this game goes dancing. We also have a chance to sweep our rivals, and end the season with a game that finally gets us over that mountain we have been climbing and just falling short of all. freakin. season.Now if we lose this game, you will probably never hear about it again in the media, and probably won't ever want to think about it again. State is in, Michigan is out, big deal no news there. Now if we win this game, with how things usually go the media probably still won't report a lot about it BUT it will be a game as Michigan Wolverines that we will never forget. Rarely do you have so much on the line for two rivals on the last game of the season. I think after all the craziness the past four years, the time play up to our potential and get results out of it is now.To get this victory, you know on the court all the tools are there. Off the court, in the stands, all the tools are there. It is up to everyone involved to make sure we utilize our ability to come out strong and never stop for fourty minutes, doing what we do for every play. Yes there is only so much we can do from the bleachers, but we know more than anyone else how one play, or 2.4 seconds can be the difference between a historic victory, and just another defeat. We can make that difference. I am sick of losing, I am sick of excuses, and I am sure as hell sick of Michigan State. I want every one to guarantee they will have more energy than ever before, and will be relentless every play for 40 minutes. Lets be as close together as possible and make today history.Queme Los Barcos,Will