Remember when we were arguing with Rutgers bloggers about which athletic director was worse?
Prepare for plenty of Michigan references as part two of the FCS
semi-finals kicks off after the commercial break. Villanova plays Appalachian State.
Delaware in the finals. some other team pointed out by a commenter below.
His season is over now. Can he kick in the bowl game and will it have any effect on his eligibility?
It would be nice if he could provide some stability on the football team.
That was one helluva goal he had last night. I like that kid.
- I'm starting to get a feel for what this team is about and I'm not real delighted about it. They look pretty solid if not spectacular in all three phases of the game.
- They're playing a lot more 3-4 base even with georgia with a TE and FB. But by the end of the 1st quarter they started walking up the safety
- It looks like we can have some success running against the three down linemen.
- They substitute a lot on defense, this should be mitigated some by our hurry up, provided we can sustain drives.
- Relf doesn't really have the breakaway speed in the open field, but he'll kill you all day with 8-30 yard runs if you don't put a solid tackle on him.
- OOOOOOoooooh sweet play for MSU's first TD. I'll have to dissect that. (below)
- Georgia gives up a bad fumble which takes away what would have been a sure TD.
- #15 DB playing a deep zone was too aggressive didn't get his hips turned and got beat for a huge pass (i've been told he's not playing D anymore, oh well)
- #34 can't bull rush but he's smart and fast, moves well laterally, batted a ball rushing from a two point. he's a bit of tweener DE/OLB
- Georgia muffed a punt, so there's 2 bad turnovers and we've still got a ways to go before half.
- the motion man is very important in the play designs. our guys need to be ready and anticipate what the formation 'will be'. They like to motion guys into the backfield or across the formation for the fly sweep. And sometimes they do motion just to do motion, like flipping the formation strength on a passing down.
- Haha, halfback pass, nice play call, HORRIBLE execution. and the Georgia OLB was staying at home and got the INT, so we're back to +1 TO margin.
- And Relf draws a personal foul. Do we have any sean avery's on defense to get under his skin?
- MSU DL just blew up a zone blocking scheme as they all just shot across their blockers and met in the backfield. I'm thinking that's a miscall by the georgia O-line (hoping)
- With the tweeners that MSU has on defense, they'll rush just 2 down linemen but still bring 3, 4, or even 5 pass rushers. their DE's will drop into coverage a fair amount of the time. This is probably done to complement their blitzing. Denard, be careful about your hot reads!!!
- Oooh! Georgia gets a TD on a Tunnell screen (called back on penalty) but neither safety is anywhere to be seen. I LIKE IT!
- 7-6 at the half, but Georgia could easily be leading this if they hadn't fumbled or converted in the redzone. MSU is making an annoying habit of bending but not breaking.
- (Off Topic halftime comment: I'm watching Equilibrium on cable and the black guy just ruins it! He's fricken smiling within seconds of his introduction!!! You're supposed to not have any emotions dumbass. Christian bale should have shot you right then and there! Way to ruin it for everyone else. Sean Bean, always solid)
- Ballard #28 doesn't have great hands for the passing game.
- YES! ANOTHER HORRID INT BY RELF UNDER PRESSURE. Two weeks in a row. but Georgia was offsides. (please still do this, please still do this). When he throws off his back foot, start quacking, cause it's a duck!
- Jebus, they give Relf 3 lead blockers on some of those QB iso's.
- But he does show a little carelessness with the ball, fumbled outofbounds. (then again, so does denard), fumbled snap, fumbled mesh. If Relf has a bad day with turnovers, we'll win.
- Georgia doesn't have the passing ability to make MSU pay for putting 8 in the box. They rotate the safety late, but it's the same thing for the LB's changing their responsibilities.
- MSU doing a great job of 'checking the check' on defense. This has been consistent in all four games so far. (i.e. the defense shows blitz or some other risky defense, the offense sees it and checks to a hot route, and then the D sees the O change and changes too.)
- We're gonna need a huge game from our contain men, Roh, and whoever is playing opposite of Roh.
- Relf loses accuracy the further downfield he tries to throw. Intermediate over the middle is his sweet spot for passing. Need MLB's to get good pass drops.
- Mullen with another great 4th and inches call on his own 40 with 6 minutes to go, that's the kind of call that wins games. I'm starting to really respect this guy. Between Ballard and Relf, inches are a gimme for this veteran O-line.
- #34 wright, not really a pass rusher, great ups (2nd time i've noticed that?) likes to get in the passing lanes and bat the ball.
- at 17-6 georgia fails on 4th down deep in their own territory with 4 minutes to play, the final 13 points don't really matter. This was a pretty close game where if Georgia had a better passing QB, they probably could have won easily. MSU blitzed like crazy and kept 8 in the box all day.
- They didn't run hardly anything from under center (any?). Left the single wing stuff at home this week. Didn't see much of perkins #27, anyone know if he was injured for this game? That might have changed the formations available.
- Georgia's QB has an arm, just too young to know what to do with it right now. I'll have to watch the rest of the games, but my suspicion is that they don't blitz quite as much against better QB's (but then again, Denard is just a true sophomore with a tendency for bad interceptions, so we'll probably see lots of guys coming from different places)
MSU's first TD
This isn't a play that I have seen them run often up to this point, but it's a sweet play because it utilizes a lot of their offensive concepts and it's been tweeked for perfection in that situation. (not sure if the tweek was by design or just bad execution by the RB)
They're in the redzone, it's a big game. Still scoreless. It's not a time to be vanilla. They come out in what appears to be a simple 3 WR twins right. But actually, this is an unbalanced line. Both the WR are on the line of scrimmage which means that Bumphis is ineligible on this play. The left flanker, who's into the boundary will go in motion making this a huge overshift to the right. With one of the WR ineligible, this is screaming run to the right 99% of the time.
But the tricky thing here is that the TE is not on the line of scrimmage. This will be important in a moment. The RB is lined up in Relf's hip pocket indicating a mesh that could really go into any of the 4 inside gaps. The motion man is deep into the backfield faking the fly sweep which would be a common base play for this formation.
Here's where the real genius of the play can be seen. At the snap of the ball, the 3 linemen on the left block down hard to the right. The right guard pulls to the left. And the right tackle shows pass blocking technique on what will be the backside DE. There are just false keys being given all over the place. The corner and safety have been taken in by the motion and their momentum is completely wrong. Anyone on the defensive right side of the ball is going to be reading that the play is going to their left. The only one who has a shot at stopping this play for minimal gain is the Mike linebacker if he can pick out the right read amongst the 5 false ones. The big mistake is by the safeties, one of whom is completely confused, and the other is taking himself out of position.
The RB's first step is lateral to the left as he tries to get a good pitch relationship for the option. In this case the fly sweep acts as the dive man, but he's going completely horizontal. Georgia is completely baffled by what they're seeing. One LB makes the correct read, but you can't stop an option with one man. The other LB needs to get on his horse and cover the pitch man. (The ideal defense for this would be to not have the safety and DE get fooled, so the DE can keep contain and take the pitch man)
But EVEN IF Georgia had sniffed all that out, there was still the issue of the TE coming across the formation to do either a lead block or take the shovel pass. And that wasn't a TE, that was #2, their third TB. Another hint that something odd is coming. But he's hard to see behind that scrum of blockers. Anyway, 1 defender taking on 3 offender is never going to be a good thing for the defense.
This last part I'm not sure if it was by design or just poor execution by the running back Ballard, who is usually used on inside runs, not keeping proper pitch relationship. He gets well ahead of the play and Relf is forced to make a forward pass to him. If I had to guess, I'd say it's by design, with the shovel pass in play, the linemen are already staying at the LOS. It could just be that he ran out of space running towards the boundary and got overanxious to turn it upfield. But if it is by design, it's pretty clever, because this creates the possibility of turning him into a lead blocker for Relf if the pass isn't there.
In the end it's an easy TD. Relf had 4 options on this play, 2 others would have gotten huge gains by design, the only bad thing he could have done was hold onto the ball. And it's just a sweet play all around. The left tackle gets a great block to make it a walk in TD. Bumphis waited on the line, but he was pretty close to getting a flag for being illegally downfield.
Later they ran two more plays from this formation, (and why not, when it was that wide open the first time). They hit the shovel to Ballard who was at H-back for a big gainer, and they got a TD on the straight up pass motion. Interesting to note that the ineligible Bumphis sprints backwards on that play in about the only way he can legally get the ball. So going down the rabbit hole, they probably have a transcontinental play from the formation and a give to the fly sweep who gives to bumphis on the reverse (glad bumphis isn't playing, they'll probably use #27 in that role instead.)
And on a 4th play, they ran from almost the same look, but without the motion, and the WR were aligned to the short side of the field (on all 4 plays the WR were to the right, maybe they're not good with that formation flipped, at least at this point in the season). This time Relf just kept it to the wide side without some of the other options, probably didn't want to risk stopping the clock. Instead the two guys just turned into lead blockers. And this was a called run.
Watching the replay of him taking the field this morning on the BTN really puts things into perspective. Brock taking the field and slapping the banner was the greatest moment in Michigan stadium history. Watching that again still puts a lump in my throat and a tear in my eye. That man has been through more than anyone deserves to have to weather. I dont know how old the show is, but they said he is now able to walk 50 yards with only a single cane. I cannot see anything in the future ever surpassing that moment for me in Michigan Stadium. Sincere admiration.
I'm pretty excited about the movie tomorrow. What I'm really curious about is how C. James is portrayed. You would assume if anyone was getting paid on SMU it was Erik Dickerson and him. This should be good. Has anyone noticed if he has commented on the Cam Newton situation?
We've got a break between basketball's victory and soccer's impending awesome. What better than some FCS football?
New Hampshire is at Delaware. Blue Hens in the maize-ish and blue-ish and the winged helmets. UNH is up 3 as the 1st quarter is coming to an end.