I've made it a habit to check out the box score of UofM's games to see if my eyes agree with the numbers. It took me awhile to find this, but the box score for yesterday's game can be found here:
Obviously, the main story told from the box score is a missing 4th quarter. What I also found interesting was the score of the 2nd quarter, UofM 20, WMU 3. I'm paying more attention to the 2nd quarter this year as a result of last year. This next fact has been little discussed on this board or elsewhere, but I find it fascinating. Last year, UofM outscored it's opposition on a cumulative basis in every quarter but the 2nd. Scroll about 2/3 down this link:
to see the cumulative score by quarters:
UM 122 ... 83 ... 95 ... 104
OPP 64 ... 194 ... 92 ... 88
We were outscored by a whopping 194-83 in the 2nd quarters of games last year. I think it was a reflection of the inexperience of the team and inability of the coaching staff (particularly the defensive side) to adjust during the game. As soon as we made a mistake in the first half, things started going south and it took them until at least after halftime to snap out of it. How much of this was mental? How much was due to the program being under a microscope in RR's 3rd, make-or-break-it year? I guess we'll never know. Growing up, when we had a tough first half, I was also told by my dad to wait for the third quarter because Bo was a master of the mid-game adjustment. And he was usually right. Well, last year, we dug too big a hole in the 2nd quarter for the half-time adjustments to matter.
One good aspect of MANBALL (or scoring more slowly if you will) may be that the defensive staff has a chance to make adjustments while our offense is taking 8:33 off the clock. After WMU's first drive of 7:11, their next longest drive was only 4:32. Clearly, something changed, and for the better.
Other highlights from the box score:
* ONLY 1 PENALTY !!! That is shockingly low for a first game. Congrats to Hoke and company. Perhaps, again, this is just a symptom of the players being a little more experienced.
* 21 players for UofM made at least one tackle, solo or assisted. So, yeah, we were rotating players in pretty frequently. We have DEPTH!!! Maybe. (In contrast, WMU only had 12 guys make tackles.)
* Net yards per kickoff was 49.3 for WMU, and only 34.5 for us. There were 9 kickoffs total, so we gave up ~67 yards of field position just on the kickoffs. That has to improve next week.
* We won the turnover battle 3-0. A combination of more experienced skill-position players and more blitzing on defense. Let's hope that holds up. Regress to the mean, please, please, please, ...
Normally, I look at first downs to see how the teams did on a consistent basis. This basically throws out the big plays and looks at the teams across the rest of the 60 minutes (or in this case, 42 minutes.) We were tied 17-17 in first downs, but I think you throw that out this week because of the 2 defensive scores giving them extra possessions. Instead, just look at the yards per play. We were at 7.4, they were at 5.0. Last year we gave up an average of 6.1 yards per play. So our defense was better than last year statistically, but it's hard to say too much until we see how WMU does in their other games.
Anything else stick out to the MGoBoard?
My sister in law noticed that the band mostly played to the east side of the field for the first time in our memory. Her comment was that that was "where the rich people were sitting". We enjoyed it because we are more east than west (southeast to be exact) and could actually hear most of the music. I also hate the fact that I no longer have the yards gained passing and running on the scoreboard. grrrrr!
Should have a HD version up soon. First every snap video tomorrow morning probably.
EDIT: HD torrent is up: http://bit.ly/qmsdGa
This is my first time to do the diary thing because I figure I never have enough content that anyone would want or that deserved it's own space. Not gonna lie - little nervous. If this does not really fit into the diary parameters then I would not be offended by it's deletion. I'm also grown up enough to take the criticism often found on the MGoBoard.
Now to the point. Many of you are familiar with monuMental and his amazing artwork that can be found over at theartthearttheartdotcom. Most of you also know he will not be able to provide wallpaper this season because he has too much on his plate.
I'd like to say that I am by no means as creative as many others on this board and not anywhere near worthy enough to even touch monuMental's magnetic lasso tool. However, I was asked by a couple friends if I had any UofM wallpaper so I decided to give it an amateurish try.
This is what I came up with for the Under The Lights game. I wanted to keep it slick and simple so I imediately considered stadium lights. I recall the day Addidas previewed the throwback uniforms and went searching for those. Once I found them I thought of combining them and the lights idea. After many different attempts and changes I simply came back to the clean look I landed on and added the UTL official logo. Thoughts?
The latest week in recruiting sees Notre Dame pick up their highest-ranked recruit in DT Jarron Jones while Purdue and Northwestern each add some lower-ranked players to their classes. Other than that, nothing really happened. Action since last rankings:
8-28-11 Northwestern gains commitment from Jaylen Prater.
8-29-11 Notre Dame gains commitment from Jarron Jones. Purdue gains commitment from Carlos Carvajal.
8-30-11 Northwestern gains commitment from Terrance Brown.
9-3-11 Purdue gains commitment from Aloyis Gray.
9-4-11 Purdue gains commitment from Devin Smith.
|Big Ten+ Recruiting Class Rankings|
|Rank||School||# Commits||Rivals Avg||Scout Avg||ESPN Avg||24/7 Avg|
*ESPN doesn't rate JUCOs, so Isaac Fruechte (Minnesota), Darius Stroud (Indiana), Steffon Martin and Devin Smith (Purdue) are exluded from their respective team averages.
On to the full data, after the jump.
|#1 Michigan - 22 Commits|
Michigan maintains their stranglehold at the top of the rankings. Sione Houma moves from two to three stars on Rivals, and he's now ranked as their #5 fullback in the country.
|#2 Notre Dame - 14 Commits|
The Irish land Jarron Jones, their highest-rated recruit across the board to date. They still have some ground to cover to catch Michigan, going by pure numbers, but in terms of quality of commits this class is right up there.
|#3 Penn State - 17 Commits|
J.P. Holtz earns a three-star ranking from Rivals.
|#4 Ohio State - 12 Commits|
No change for the Buckeyes.
|#5 Michigan State - 14 Commits|
Kodi Keiler is upgraded from unranked to three stars on Rivals. Interesting, but completely irrelevant, sidenote: Rivals and Scout are in complete lockstep when it comes to ranking the Spartan commits (requisite dig: because they're almost all three-stars—but, you know, national three-stars).
|#6 Wisconsin - 10 Commits|
No change for the Badgers.
|#7 Indiana - 17 Commits|
Shawn Heffern gets a three-star ranking from Rivals, while Alex Todd picks up three stars from 24/7. I'm still keeping them just a hair below Wisconsin, but if the average rankings get any closer or the Hoosiers pick up another commit that'll probably change.
|#8 Northwestern - 16 Commits|
The Wildcats pick up a pair of unheralded recruits in LB Jaylen Prater and S Terrance Brown. This drags down their averages considerably, but I won't punish a team for picking up commits. Iowa is hot on their heels, though.
|#9 Iowa - 10 Commits|
No change for the Hawkeyes.
|#10 Minnesota - 18 Commits|
Nick Rallis, Maxx Williams, and Rodrick Williams each pick up three stars from Rivals after being unrated. 24/7 does the same for Scott Ekpe and R. Williams.
|#11 Purdue - 15 Commits|
The Boilermakers land ATH Aloyis Gray, OL Devin Smith, and TE Carlos Carvajal. Jimmy Herman picks up three stars from Rivals. By the power of sheer volume, Purdue moves ahead of Nebraska. File that under: 'Things I Never Thought I'd Write About Football and/or Recruiting'.
|#12 Nebraska - 6 Commits|
No change for the Huskers. Still. Bo Pelini isn't expecting some sort of Big Ten Expansion Draft, is he?
|#13 Illinois - 8 Commits|
No new commits for the Illini. Joseph Spencer picks up three stars and Joey Warburg two from Rivals.