Is next week a maize out?
I'm very easily recognized as one of the "If we went 7-5 this year, I would have been happy as hell anyways" crew. That's my disclaimer.
At this point, there's potential to go 10-2. There's a very decent chance of going 9-3. We've already determined 8-4. However, UM has not faced an OSU roster and setup like this one in decades and it's impossible to not feel like losing to Ohio State this year could be more of a letdown than the past three years combined.
I will not thump my chest and put up a billboard in Columbus of a shoe dropping alongside another. I will not buy a subscription to an OSU board just to post meaningless garbage. I will not even consider it a monumental mindblowing TALKABOUTITFORAYEAR thing. All I know is this is the biggest monkey on the back of the program. Not OSU. Not positional controversy. A losing streak to OSU.
It can be 4-2. I don't care. The first step in this program is not going to a fancy bowl game or topping Rodriguez's best season. It's snapping a streak. We've beaten all the teams we've beaten and, well, MSU and Iowa were properly stacked to beat this roster. OSU isn't. OSU is beatable. To lose to them would still allow the past 3 years to permeate, somehow differently (IMO) than the loss to MSU.
We need. to beat. OSU. This team can do it. Just please do it. Please. KTHXBI.
So I know this is really premature, and Michigan would have to win out to even be considered. The most important thing is winning the rest of the games, beating OSU and Nebraska.
HOWEVA, lets assume we win out. How realisitc are our BCS chances? Odds are MSU wins the Leaders division, and at this point Wisky controls their own destiny, and I expect them to win out and have a rematch vs MSU in the championship game. I would bet on Wisky winning then as well. MSU would then have a 3rd loss, and I think if we win out we would jump them in the standings.
There are 4 at-large bids. 1 will go to an SEC team. None will go to a Big East team. That leaves, B1G, ACC, BIG 12, PAC-12, and non AQ.
Houston will probably get a bid, they're ranked 11th and have 6-4 SMU and 7-3 Tulsa left, both of whom they should beat.
From the PAC-12 the only teams are Oregon and Stanford. If Oregon wins, both teams will have 1 loss, and Oregon would control their own destiny. At this point, Stanford probably gets an AL bid, and there are 2 PAC-12 teams. If Stanford wins, they clinch the North and get a bid. Oregon would have 2 loses at this point and be out of the championship game. They still would have to play USC as well. If they get passed USC, they should get an AL berth. (Obviously, this is also contingent on whichever team makes the championship game winning as well.)
From the ACC, Clemson is already in their championship game, and Va Tech is the favorite to make it as well. This can be kind of tricky to predict. If Virginia makes the championship game, Michigan should hope Clemson wins so Virginia doesn't steal a spot and potentially let Clemson or Va Tech get an at large. If Va Tech wins out and the two play each other, does the loser get an at large berth? I personally think if Clemson loses, they'd have a better shot at an AL than if Va Tech lost. Best case scenario for Mich though is Clemson losing to South Carolina to end the season and then losing to Va Tech in the championship.
From the BIG 12, the only two teams with a chance are OSU and OU and it comes down to Bedlam. If OU wins, both teams probably get in. If OSU wins, they're probably in the NC game, and OU probably still gets an AL berth.
From the B1G, I briefly went over this earlier, but the championship will probably be MSU vs the winner of Wisky vs PSU. Once again, I think Wisky will win that, giving PSU their third loss. I think that would knock them out of an AL berth. Then from the leaders, Nebraska would be out with their 3rd loss (assuming we beat them), leaving us with two losses. Then I would think Wisky would beat MSU in the championship game, but even if MSU wins, I would think the loser with 3 loses would be out of consideration.
Yes, I know this is long, complicated, convaluted, and doesn't matter if we don't win out. But assuming we do. What do you think Michigan's chances are for an AL berth? After going through all of this, I still don't think we have amazing chances, but better than I originally did. Of the three non-SEC spots, I think at this point Houston, a PAC-12, and a BIG-12 teams are the front runners. But if one of those three were to stumble, I think we'd be next in line. Agree? Disagree?
Maybe we can hold it right next to the Kovacs Fan Club.
We used to cringe at JT back there. Way too slow.
WHen we saw him lined up one-on-one vs ND's Michael Floyd, how many like me worried that Mattison was a crazy gambler?
But, like Kovacs, the guy is a gamer. Plays smart & WAY above his ability.
What are your thoughts following this game?
- Denard is struggling running this offense...HOWEVA, I think we can get him on track if we went no huddle a little more
- Fitz is the #1 back --- We knew this already, now the nation knows
- Our offensive line is the key to our offense. (Yes, any offense can say that, however when Devin and Denard have time, when Fitz has a crease, when we control the line...we're good. When we don't, we're not good. It's that simple. We don't have a QB who can win with average/bad line play by hitting the slants and quick passes.
- Mattison is king.
- Our defensive line is damn good. You say, "no shit." Not so fast my friend...think back to the beginning of the year. They struggled. Roh was a non-factor. Brink and Heininger were not good. RVB couldn't get a pass rush. These guys are GOOD now.
- Floyd is the most improved player on the team. Take away his best play (the INT) and his worst play (the holding or PI call)...he had a GREAT game. I don't care if it shows in the UFR or not. Floyd played well. Got away with a few things, but still, he was right there.
All in all, you can't complain too much about a win. But that 2nd and 3rd quarter was just BAD offensively. We should've won that game 47-14...EASILY. Maybe even 51 or 55-14. Our redzone playcalling has to get better. I think Borges got too conservative after the Iowa game. Those calls weren't bad 3 of the 4 could've/should've been TDs.
Teams are starting to do the same thing vs. us...Jam the WRs at the line and blitz the house. Jamming the WRs causes timing issues and allows the blitz to get through. We have to be able to hit the slant route like we did to Roundtree vs. MSU. Or throw a fade like we did so many times vs. ND.
One thing that pissed me off was Craig James whining about our redzone offense. We started the year like 18 of 18!!
- Why don't we use that play where Denard runs to the line and throws to the slot
- Why don't we use the original Fritz package anymore?
- Great job by Mattison with the zone blitzes and showing 7-8 at the line and rush 4.
- I don't know if Frank Clark will ever start...but he's a passing rushing MACHINE!
- The last two plays of Illinois opening drive of the 2nd half were 2 of the most beautiful plays I've ever seen in football.
- That game was loooooooooooooooong.
- Craig James, please...just stop talking.
....your immediate thoughts ABOUT THE GAME?