Dawsons down to seven and we're included. Hope we can get him on campus.
It's been no big secret that Denard Robinson is the hottest topic of conversation in college football these first two weeks. Game Day sent Erin Andrews to do a story on him. USA today is talking about the Heisman. Hell the Wall Street Journal did a story on him. Of course you all know what he did to UConn and Notre Dame.
Denard Robinson is flash dilithium!
There really is no argument about his awesomeness, everyone agrees on that. Like many awesome things there always has to be a "But". The big "but" everyone keeps throwing out there about Denard, is that he's going to get killed running the ball that much when Big 10 season starts.
Now look, I agree that carrying the ball 28.5 times per game will be a huge load to carry for an entire year. But that's not going to happen. It's just not. Let's make a couple assumptions about the year for him: the likelihood is that over the next three games or so, Shoelace, will see probably half that load. So let's be generous and say he has 15 carries per game for them. And then let's assume during those three games, the running backs get it going and you begin to see a balance. Again we'll be generous and say Denard carries 20 times per game over the remaining seven games. That puts him at 242 carries for the year or 22 carries per game.
Yes that is still high for a quarterback leading this style of attack (I still believe it will be lower as the defenses get tougher and DC's figure out that they need to take away his legs). But that average isn't crazy. Let's look at some similar QBs:
Pat White - 6'0" 197 his highest total was 15.92 per game his senior year (and that was missing a game).
Josh Nesbitt - 6'1" 217 his highest average was 19.9/game.
Tim Tebow - 6'2" 236 his highest average was 16.15 as a sophomore. But Tebow was a horse so I'm not sure he counts.
Eric Crouch - 6'0" 195 his highest was 16.91 his Heisman year.
Crouch and White are obviously the closest. So Denard will have 66 more carries if the above scenario comes to fruition. But neither of these guys got killed or couldn't hack it carrying the ball the majority of the time.
"But, the Big Ten!" you say. Yeah maybe the bruisers in the Big Ten are more dangerous than the Big East and Big 12 (ten years ago). I don't know, hard to say. So let's assume they are for argument sake.
To that I would like to submit, one, Antwaan Randle El.
Yeah remember him?
Let's see: 5'10" 190. Averaged 19.8 carries per game in 2000. Oh and by the way he freaking returned punts for Indiana! Punts! I think it's also fair to mention that Indiana's offensive line was pretty horrible so who knows how many times he had to take off running when protection wore down. And we should throw in that yeah he plays wide receiver in the NFL.
Ok, I'll give you that El is a really tough dude. He's a freak of an athlete (remember he played hoops and baseball at Indiana). And maybe he's a caliber of athlete above Denard. But I doubt it. I'm pretty sure Denard is very similar in athleticism as our friend Antwaan.
So the next time some hater decides to throw in the "yeah but Denard is going to get killed in the Big Ten", sit back, smile, take a drink and whisper: "Antwaan Randle El".
try to minimize the swearing, graphically, a bit. shirt would work for all of UM sports, but those who have watched the past two preview videos know what this is about.
Acutal Freep article just posted.
"If Robinson continues to electrify stadiums and
accumulate incredible statistics, and leads the
Wolverines back to prominence, the sophomore
will be the heavy favorite to win college football’
s most heralded and coveted individual award.
If only it were that simple.
Any chance of Robinson winning the Heisman is
complicated by circumstances surrounding
[Ed: Bumped for the line change info on Michigan's major step forward in Vegas. Since Vegas lines are year-in, year-out the most accurate prediction mechanisms available, this is heartening. Perhaps too heartening. BTW: Jamie and his merry band of degenerate gamblers cover all manner of things at Just Cover.]
Before getting into the meat of what will be a quick hitting MGoDiary, let's clean some things up from last week.
I might make a decent oddsmaker after all. Those four prop bets I came up with for the ND/Michigan game sure did confound people. Only one person did better than 2-2 and that was MGoTim, who checked in a 3-1. I guess it pays to be an insider. Not sure what his prize should be. Maybe a day off from cat chasing duties? Or a day where his posts get to breathe for two hours without a post on top of it? He certainly doesnt need the MGoPoints. In that same diary, I listed all the actual props that sports books had up for the Notre Dame game. A few brave souls put their necks out on the line and picked each one. And, you know what? They did pretty well, considering the number of props out there. Special kudos goes to Clarence Beeks who went 10-2-1 on his prop selections. Somebody get that man to Vegas, STAT. But, it's really no surprise. He's a Pittsburgh Steeler fan, so you know he is sharp as a tack. Nice work, Mr Beeks. Now, how are those Orange futures looking? Please advice.
Also, over at the JCB, the Pick-4 game for the week is up. Check it out. If you havent played yet, no worries. Jump on in. Once Ocotber rolls around there will be more points available to allow you to catch up, so dont worry if you're behind and just starting the contest this week. We'vre having a fun time with this and the more, the merrier.
On to the UMASS game. A lot of folks dont realize that the oddsmakers do release lines for FCS vs FBS teams. Some places will even have full betting boards for the FCS vs FCS games throughout the year. Just about everyone of them will have lines for all the levels of college football playoffs, too. That comes in handy every year when I wake up shaking that second Saturday of December with no bigtime college football to bet on anymore. Dont think for a second that that's the deepest we can go into depravity. I've noticed that 5dimes is also offering high school football lines for the bigger games across the country. No way, will I ever bet those. That's just being a degenerate. No way. Well, maybe if its the only game on TV. Or if there's some value in the line, maybe. But, you have to be a pretty dark soul to go this route. Completely unrelated, does anyone know who is starting for Hoover, Alabama at quarterback?
As of now, Michigan is favored tomorrow by 28.5 points. It's been a weird week tracking this line. At the start of the week, 5dimes listed it as just Michigan -21. That must have been a misprint, or they got hammered with so much Michigan money, because they took the line off the board for several hours and by Tuesday afternoon the line had ballooned up to 29.5 points. It crept to 30.5 by that evening. The line has been steadily coming down ever since. It was lodged at Michigan -27.5 for a couple of days before settling in at the 28.5 number this morning, with an Over/Under total of 51.5. THAT looks enticing. Two out of every three games in the Rodriguez Era have gone over the total, but none have this year. Should we play the percentages and expect an Over? With that out of the way, let me quickly rattle of the mock props for tomorrow.
Tate Forcier/Devin Gardner, total combined yards: O/U 250.5
Ray Vinopal, total combined tackles, INTs, PBUs: O/U 5.5
Fiztgerald Toussiant, total rushing yards: O/U 80.5
Will A Michigan Freshman Intercept A Pass: Yes/No
Jeremy Gallon, total yards, including returns: O/U 120.5
Try your hand at those.
I intended on waxing philosophical all the Denard Show, but what more can I really add at this point? For the second straight week, he produced a game and some plays I've never really seen from a Michigan QB before in the 30+ years I've been watching. Damn impressive so far. I say we sit back and enjoy the show. And work on our own dreads.
His emergence has also had a major impact on the odds for Michigan. The most notable being the fact that Denard is now one of the betting favorites to win the Heisman Trophy. Terrelle Pryor is technically the chalk at 3.5 to 1, but Denard is the second favorite bet at 4.5 to 1. Not bad for somebody who wasnt even on the board ten days ago. Kellen Moore is 8/1 and a series of players including Cam Newton, Mark Ingram and Ryan Mallett are at 10/1. Tate Forcier, by the way, remains on the board as a 30/1 shot to win the trophy. FACT: THAT MIGHT BE A SUCKER BET.
Michigan has also shifted from a 100/1 shot to win the BCS National Title all the way down to 30/1. That's a pretty big swing. We've also seen the pointspreads for Michigan's Big 10 showdowns start moving in the Wolverine's favor, some rather significantly. Here are where the Big 10 lines stand right now.
- Michigan -5.5 vs MSU (Line was UM -3 over the summer)
- Michigan pick 'em vs Iowa (Line was UM +3 over the summer)
- Michigan +3 at Penn State (Line was +10 over the summer.......oh, to have a +10 ticket in our pockets right now)
- Michigan -1 vs Wisconsin (Line was Michigan +3 over the summer)
- Michigan +13.5 at OSU (Line was Michigan +15.5 over the summer)
Denard is having an impact. The public wants to bet Michigan again. The average line movement since the season started is 3.7 points in Michigan's favor. I fully expect the MSU line to be -7 come game day. The others will continue to move towards Michigan. If you want to play the Homer card and bet Michigan, get these lines now before more value gets sucked out of it. For the the first time in the Rodirguez Era in Ann Arbor, bookies are adjusting lines to stem the amount of money rolling in on the Wolverines. That's progress, babby! And, it's a great thing to see.
[Ed: I cannot believe Michigan is actually a favorite against Wisconsin. The betting public now has Michigan at 8-2-1 on the season, which will be a neat trick.]