Mike Lantry, 1972
I think our depth this season is going to be a major strength for this team and could be one of the difference makers that will go mainly unnoticed.
After watching last year's MSU game on BTN a couple days ago, I found myself thinking that we really were not that far off from having a top notch offense and good-enough defense that could easily have won 6,7,8 games instead of 5. And that was with Molk out, Mooseman snapping the ball all over the place, and Tate injured. Maybe we beat MSU, Iowa, Purdue, etc if we had more depth.
Of course the lack of CB depth has been well documented over the past weeks, and losing any more players there could be enough to doom the season. But almost every position has serviceable backups that will allow us to do two things we couldn't last year.
1) We will be able to roll two players in certain positions during the game without much of a drop off. This will keep us fresher as the game and the season wears on.
2) We will be able to recover when/if the Angry Michigan Hating God strikes us throughout the season. If an O-lineman, LB, RB, WR, etc goes down we should have someone who can step in and keep up the pace.
I just can't help but feel that these things will really help us out as we roll into the meat of our schedule. As a team, we seemed to get weaker and weaker as the season rolled on, causing us to lose a couple of games (Purdue, Illinois) that we might have won in September.
Hopefully this year will be different! Go Blue!
So I was thingking....Doug Dutch was a decent player who was switched around between WR and CB at Michigan. He was always a back-up who rarely played. He was undrafted but signed with the redskins, then was traded by the redskins to the ravens for former 2nd round pick John Beck. Not saying Doug is a Great player but obviously is pretty talented.
Anyone else hoping that James Rogers is like Doug Dutch, but with the opportunity to play?
Last year the Bears had only 2 qbs on the roster. This year they may go with three. Obviously Cutler, then probably Hanie (if his injury is not serious) leaving Collins with a great chance to get that Veteran 3rd-string spot; with rookie LeVever (sp?) out of CMU his main competition for a roster spot
Collins has lasted forever in the NFL.
First, my original email (short and to the point):
And now the response:
Thank you for your note on the importance of Michigan-Ohio State football game. President Coleman and other university leaders have asked me to respond on their behalf.
I want to assure you that no one understands the tradition of this Big Ten football rivalry more than Athletic Director David Brandon. He has experienced this legendary rivalry first hand as a player, as a fan and supporter of the athletic program and as a U-M regent.
Expansion of the Big Ten is certain to bring some changes. We know there will be a conference championship game in 2011 and we expect to soon learn the details of the divisional alignment. Clearly we would like to have Michigan and Ohio State play the last game of the season for the Conference Championship (as has happened so many times in the past). However, based on a 12 Team - two division conference with a championship game format, in order for this to happen in the future both teams will have to play their way into the championship game. Which, we hope happens many times!
Certainly one of the priorities of the Big Ten commissioner and the Big Ten athletic directors is preserving the traditional rivalries, like Michigan-Ohio State and Michigan-Michigan State. This will continue to be a driving principle...as will creating competitive balance between the two divisions.
Just like the renovations to the Big House, we believe the Big Ten can move forward and make improvements while maintaining the traditions that are so important to fans.
This does not sound good IMHO. I told him we wanted to have Michigan-OSU be the last game of the regular season. And he responded by saying they are hoping Michigan-OSU can play in the title game every year, but change is inevitable. Maybe I didn't explain myself well enough, or maybe this is just not going to end well. Anyways, I suggest you guys keep flooding the AD with emails, and when you do make it clear that Michigan-OSU need to be on the same side and play the last weekend of the regular season. No excuses!
This weekly update will have a few brief notes about a couple prospects, and mainly be about some of the visitors I've confirmed for the U Conn game. This is an initial list that will most definitely grow as the first game gets closer, and as I talk to more people.
6'5", 225 lbs.
Deion quiet with his recruitment, but has always listed Michigan in his list of schools he has interest in. He recently told me that his list is now down to five:
Michigan, Pitt, Penn State, Georgia, and South Carolina are my top five for now. I might wait until signing day to decide, or I might announce at one of the All Star games I was nominated for.
The main all star game he's talking about being nominated for is the Army game, which is a nice honor. He also told me the Michigan coaches want him to wait until the end of the season to take his official visit so they can make sure he's their main focus. Interesting strategy which could mean a few things. Either they really want to give him enough attention, or they don't want him to try to commit with Anthony Zettel still on the board and two defensive ends already committed. I'm not sure which is the case.
6'5", 265 lbs.
Knox is an instate kid that has a couple MAC offers under his belt. Grades and qualifying test scores have been the issue with Knox, but he's working towards rectifying that.
I retook the ACT, I got a lower score but a better score on the math part. I have all core classes my first trimester, and if I ace those classes then I'll be qualified.
So there's that. He told me he really likes Rich Rodriguez, and if he gets qualified Michigan has a good shot. His top three is Michigan, Michigan State, and Illinois. His fate is in his hands.
I'll post these here for now. Since this is on the front page I'll create a diary later with more updates so you can follow along.
- Avery Walls - Safety out of Georgia has been to Michigan twice, and rumors are that Michigan leads.
- Daren Kitchen - Defensive back from Louisiana told me he 100% will be there for the U Conn game, and also said his written offer from Michigan is in the mail. I've heard that before, and don't really have any way of verifying, so we'll see. We will all find out together soon, I promise you that.
- Demetrius Hart – Obviously. He's bringing some friends:
- Nick Patti - 2012 QB, teammate of Demetrius Hart will be up with his Dad, and potentially with his trainer Tom Shaw. Shaw trains a ton of football players in Florida, including Florida State commit Karlos Williams. Nick told me that Shaw will play a big role in his decision, and he considers Tom to be an uncle. Getting him on campus could be a good thing for a few reasons.
- Ha'Sean Clinton-Dix(?) - He's not 100% coming yet. They're still figuring that out. Patti and Hart don't think Clinton-Dix would consider decommitting from Alabama, but a visit can't hurt.
- Jake Fisher - Michigan commit will be there.
- Delonte Hollowell - Michigan commit.
- Chris Bryant - The Illinois offensive lineman is a maybe, depending on his game schedule. He'd like to be there, but his team has a game in East St. Louis, so he doesn't think he'll be able to make it. I'm in contact with Chris quite a bit, and he has said he'll most likely wait a few games into the season to make his decision, but may get it over with before the season. If that happens Michigan is in good position. As per usual, they just need to win.
- Hunter and Cam Stanley - 2012 offensive linemen from Toledo, Ohio. They're twins! The 6-foot-4, 260-pound linemen are both very high on Michigan. They camped at Michigan's four-day camp, and jointly took home the offensive line MVP award (they do everything together!). Hunter actually ran his best 40 time at Michigan's camp with a 4.75. Michigan is in their top three along with Notre Dame and Northwestern. They both want to make their decision relatively early, and as you can tell by their list they think they fit best in a spread offense.
- Chris and Demitrious Davis – More twins! Seriously: both 2012 prospects, Chris (5'9", 185 lbs.) is a WR/DB and his brother Demitrious (5'10", 183 lbs.) is a QB/DB. I had a great conversation with Chris, and he wanted me to make sure I told the Michigan fans this next part. "My Dad loves Michigan. Our family hates Ohio State." Chris said his dad was standing next to him grinning ear to ear because he's such a Michigan fan. He also said his dad has always told him and his brother that they should go to Michigan. The twins(!) have an early top five of Michigan, West Virginia, Cincinnati, Tennessee, and Miami. Michigan has a good chance here. Chris says his brother is quicker, but he's faster. You can watch for yourself if you'd like. Their film is actually pretty impressive sophomore film. Chris Davis and Demitrious Davis.
- .....AND TWINS!! (I had to)
- Kaleb Ringer - 2012 linebacker from Clayton, Ohio. His uncle is Javon Ringer, former MSU star running back. He told me his family affiliations won't play into anything, and he's actually a Michigan fan (FWIW). He currently holds verbal offers from Cincinnati and Iowa, which is a good sign of his talent level. He and his teammate Jeremy Campbell (DL) will be there. Campbell is listed at 5'11-6'0, weighing in at around 250-pounds. Ringer says that Campbell can squat 750 pounds, which seems like a lot to me. [Ed: me too.]
- Royce Jenkins-Stone - 2012 Cass Tech linebacker will be there. He loves Michigan.
- Chase Deback - 2012 instate offensive lineman from Charlotte, Michigan. Says he's a fan of Michigan State, but will put his fandom to the side for his recruitment. He wants to go wherever he feels is the best place for him. Being a fan of MSU growing up won't play into it. It's often hard for 16-17 year olds to distinguish the difference, though.
- Nathan Ricketts - 2012 instate linebacker. Shameless plug here. Ricketts is a 6-foot-2 linebacker with some good speed from Holland, Michigan.