TO THE HOT TAKE CANNON
I've searched the site, perused the google map/previous threads and looked at the alumni association website and had no luck. Feel free to delete this if I simply didnt' search correctly or the question gets answered early in the thread.
Any fellow Toledo area fans know of a bar that is dedicated as a Mich watching joint?
Previously, I had discussed the Purdue front seven, Dispelling a Myth: Purdue's Front Seven, I thought I would take a look into the secondary and see if there was anything interesting.
Ricardo Allen is one of the two starting cornerbacks for Purdue. Ricardo is a 5’9” 186 lb junior from Daytona Beach, Florida.
Some of his career highlights include being tied for the all-time record at Purdue for interceptions returned for touchdowns with 3. He started 12 games for Purdue in 2010 as a true freshman and was second team Freshman All-American by Rivals and Scout.com. In 2011 he was a coaches second team and media honorable mention for All-Big Ten.
Here is how he has fared in his 2 years versus Michigan. In 2010 he returned an interception for 94 yards and recorded 8 tackles. In 2011 he didn’t get many chances to intercept the ball as Michigan only threw the ball 17 times. Not throwing a pick to Allen was good, but sadly Michigan did throw 2 interceptions in 2011 to his teammates. Denard and Devin took turns gifting Purdue with 1 interception each.
So far in 2012 Allen has 16 tackles, 1 of those for a loss, 1 interception returned for 39 yards, and 1 broken up pass.
At the other corner position is Josh Johnson. Josh is a 5’11” 195 lb senior from Dade City, Florida.
Some of his career highlights include causing 2 forced fumbles in 2010, he also led the team in passes broken up with 9 and intercepted the ball 2 times in 2011. He was on special teams in 2009 as a freshman and started at cornerback 23 times in 2010 and 2011.
He has done well versus Michigan in the 2 years he has played us at the cornerback spot. In 2010 he intercepted the ball and forced a fumble. In 2011 He had 5 tackles and 1 interception. Let’s try not to make it 3 years in a row this guy gets a pick fergodsakes…
So far in 2012 Johnson has recorded 16 tackles, 1 of those for a loss, has 2 interceptions, 6 passes broken up, and 1 fumble recovery.
Another cornerback to watch for is up and coming redshirt freshman Frankie Williams. Frankie is a 5’9” 186 lb 3 star athlete from Tampa, Florida. He has been impressive this year for the Boilermakers recording the second highest amount of tackles on the team. His 19 tackles, 1 interception, and 2 passes broken up this year should earn him a lot of playing time versus Michigan.
Both of Purdue’s starting cornerbacks have faced Denard Robinson before, and both of them have recorded picks. They know his tendencies and hopefully will not be tested much early on (if at all). All of Purdue’s corners run around a 4.5 second 40 yard, so we won’t have a speed advantage. However, Purdue will give up a lot of size to Gardner and Jackson, so that should make some interesting matchups outside.
While Purdue’s cornerbacks are well experienced with Michigan, their safeties are not. Both are fairly inexperienced overall, and have seen the field very little in starting roles. They are both sophomores and will probably be tested early and often.
Taylor Richards is a 5’10” 192 lb sophomore free safety from Lake Mary, Florida. Richards appeared in 10 games last year as a true freshman, none of which he started, recorded 7 tackles on the season, and saw limited action. Saturday will be the first time Richards has started versus Michigan, so I don’t have any stats for him from last year’s game.
So far in 2012 Richards has recorded 8 tackles, ½ of those for a loss. He also has ½ a sack and 2 passes broken up. Not exactly a game changer so he will surely get picked on. Richards will need to make some big plays early in order to force Michigan to go through the middle of their defense. Without contain on the edges and over the top, Michigan can run around Purdue all day, just as they did last year.
At strong safety the Boilermakers have Landon Feichter. Landon is a 6’0” 189 lb sophomore from Ft. Wayne, Indiana. Landon was a walk on in 2010 that did not see any action and appeared in 13 games in 2011. He did record 25 tackles in 2011, 22 of them solo. This will be the first time Fiechter faces Michigan, so there aren’t any stats to show.
So far in 2012 Feichter has shown some flashes of brilliance, recording 16 tackles, 2 interceptions, and 2 passes broken up. Even with the 2 interceptions, I can see this young player being tested by Borges, anyways. Let’s hope he doesn’t pass.
I am anticipating one of these guys( or maybe both) getting burned for big yardage at least once or twice, due to their inexperience. Feichter’s 2 interceptions are concerning, so there is that. Purdue will need their safeties to step up in their secondary, just as much as their linebackers will have to do the same in their front 7. If the two of those groups underperform (linebackers and safeties) expect an easy game. If those two groups step it up a notch, and create a couple plays, it could get pretty hairy.
We certainly wish him a speedy recovery! I hope that he comes back as last year's Countess next year. It seemed that Woolfolk never returned to 100% after missing a season.
Also, for those a little more familiar with AA, I am a little confused about the "surgery @ Kensington Court" part; I have stayed in the hotel Kensington Court before (it's a pretty great place)--- what exactly is Blake referring to?
BTW, my prediction; next year Countess returns as a beast. He then proceeds to follow his redshirt-sophmore season with a Woodson-esque junior year. (So continues the "we have the next Woodson" hype! I don't quite believe he will make freakish one-handed interceptions, but he should be one of the more solid UM corners we have seen in a while.)
Angelique Chengelis has an article in today's Detroit News regarding the kinship of Courtney Avery and Michigan legend George Jewett. Link: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20121005/SPORTS0201/210050350/Michigan-s-Courtney-Avery-proud-relation-history-making-Wolverine?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|Sports
I'd been ignorant of Jewett's legacy until I saw an article in March's Michigan Today. The article (http://michigantoday.umich.edu/story.php?id=8143) is well worth your time to read, as Jewett's legacy is impressive. Michigan would not have another african-american player until the legendary Willis Ward. I cannot recommend the article highly enough if you're unaware of Jewett's story.
Jewett's father was an Ann Arbor blacksmith. Not only was Jewett Michigan's (and the B1G's) first african-american player (1890!), but he was a renaissance man and powerful business presence in Ann Arbor after graduation. He was also Ann Arbor High School's 1889 valedictorian. He played for the Wolverines in 1890 and 1892, later transferring to Northwestern to become their first african-american player too. (The transfer was motivated, according to Wikipedia, due to a dispute with Michigan's Medical School dean.)
Per Chengelis, Avery did not know of his relationship to Jewett until he arrived on campus. It's a wonderful bit of history, and with all the talk of "Legacy" jerseys I doubt Avery would trade his legacy for any teammate's.
Nick Saban made some comments yesterday suggesting that the trend of increasing pace in college football is unhealthy:
I think that the way people are going no-huddle right now, that at some point in time, we should look at how fast we allow the game to go in terms of player safety," Saban said on today's SEC teleconference. "The team gets in the same formation group, you can't substitute defensive players, you go on a 14-, 16-, 18-play drive and they're snapping the ball as fast as you can go and you look out there and all your players are walking around and can't even get lined up. That's when guys have a much greater chance of getting hurt when they're not ready to play. "I think that's something that can be looked at. It's obviously created a tremendous advantage for the offense when teams are scoring 70 points and we're averaging 49.5 points a game. With people that do those kinds of things. More and more people are going to do it. "I just think there's got to be some sense of fairness in terms of asking is this what we want football to be?"
The purity of Saban's intentions aside, is this something that should be considered? Mathlete's analysis this week showed that offense is steadily increasing in recent years. I enjoy watching offense as much as anyone, but is there a point where the balance between offense and defense tips too far in one direction and is no longer good for the game?
So, there are a few games in progress or about to start:
In the NFL, the Rams are up on the Cardinals 7-3 with about 2 minutes left in the 1st quarter.
In CFB, the marquis game tonight is clearly USC vs.Utah, starting in just a moment. On CBS Sports Network, East Carolina vs.UCF started at 8 PM and it is 14-14 with the 2nd quarter having started just a moment ago. Over at ESPNU, Arkansas State and FIU are taking a 10-7 game (FIU lead) into halftime in just a moment.
I thought it better to do this in one thread to reduce clutter.