and... i like them? I think I like them.
So, apparently (based on RR statements) all 3 QBs will go into the UConn game without playing "LIVE" since last year? (I don't think they were "live" in the spring either.)
If it was a typical cupcake for the first game, I would not be concerned. But, with UConn this spells a potential problem with turnovers.
I know they are doing drills for ball protection. I don't think that is enough. Even in the NFL with multimillion dollar QBs they still play in the preseason for about an entire game (spread over the enitre preseason).
Especially with 3 QBs, why not go "live" for at least a some practices?
Not sure if he ever got that UM offer (or would have received one in the future anyway), however, he was one of the TE/WR on UM's radar for the TE spot some of us (me) are hoping to fill in the 2011 class. Hopefully Fulse, McEvoy, or Tabb pan out.
Nowadays some of us have moved on from student status, become old people* and realized that there are far too many t-shirts in our wardrobes to justify buying even more. Has the MGoStore considered the possibility of creating other ways to publicly display our support for M and financially support our favorite procrastination source?
Thoroughly researched example for marketing purposes only (Google Docs):
Personally I could go for a little maize and blue conversation piece for the office that doesn't violate the company dress code. Is anyone else with me on this?
*Refers to almost everyone past their 4th year of undergrad at U-M or equivalent
Well, my friends over at the WLA have gone over the edge. They have switched allegiances and are now rooting for the Northwestern Wildcats. I do not know why anyone would support a team from the state of Chicago, but they are. Perhaps its too much Zima, or too long of a ride on a Unicorn. Whatever the case, they have completely lost it. They are now the Wildcats Liberation Army.
Deal with it.
I have been on the MGoSidelines for an extended while, too shellshocked by the current state of Michigan football to participate much or even complete my McBean Rating System. Yet, I return on the eve of the season because I think a point need be made. Assuredly, it’s been made before, but perhaps not with this emphasis.
I am somewhat hesitant to post this, and some will say I was not hesitant enough. I am going to the UConn game overflowing with optimism, but the optimism comes with a catch, which, because it is cathartic, will now pollute MGoBlog.
Absolutely nothing, in my opinion, now stands or can stand between the results we see on the field and a verdict on this coaching staff. We are at a moment of refreshing purity where a simple answer to a simple question now awaits the spiritually hungry:
- Can the current staff of football coaches actually recruit and coach?
In previous Rodriguez campaigns, muddy waters divided the Michigan faithful; one side, with justification, pointed at coordinator changes, mismatched personnel, attrition, distractions, and injuries, while the other side declared that, despite all these high-quality excuses, no serviceable coaching staff could ever lead a Michigan team to 3-13 against Big 10 teams over two years. (Can this actually be true? Pinch me. A 3-13 record against the Big 10? Hit me.)
The debate is thankfully over. Almost like the nauseating propaganda that precedes an election, this confusion now ends in Election Day: eleven votes are to be cast that will answer many questions, but one in particular:
- Can the current staff of football coaches actually recruit and coach?
Reading scrimmage notes prompted me to post this; in particular, I detected a faint odor of excuse wafting from comments about the secondary and the marginal tackling performance.
No more excuses, no matter how tempting. If our entire team transferrs tomorrow, no excuses. If we’ve had the bad fortune to overrate every linebacker on the planet since David Harris, no excuses.
Last year after the Indiana game, I posted on how other coaches are doing more with less. Allow me to quote myself:
The Iowa defense is younger than ours overall and features a less-experienced secondary that averages 5.3 for a Rivals Rating, or a middle range two-star. Brian says about Michigan, “There is exactly one junior and no seniors at both safety and cornerback.” Iowa has less experience. Yet my gut tells me – with absolute certainty – Darryl Clark will have a far better day against our secondary. Who wants to take me up on that bet?
In general, their players are more lowly rated at every position (possible exception of one LB), often significantly so, with players converted from the offensive side of the ball (a TE turned DL) and one playing out of position.
Occam’s Razor makes it difficult to accept that our stud HS talent was pretty much collectively overrated, and Iowa’s meh HS talent was pretty much vastly underrated. Ferentz would have given a kidney to have Cissoko or Warren or Graham or Brown or Mouton or Martin. He doesn’t have enough organs to bargain with the devil to get those types of players with mega-hype coming out of HS, yet he easily is fielding a better defense that probably would have consumed Indiana whole without any sauce.
As for the “new system” argument – that switching from Shafer to Robinson has resulted in our guys being at the start of a new learning curve – I accept some of that, but not all. Now, I will defer to Sharik or gsimms to tell me whether a new system can transform studs into non-studs, but it would seem to me that stopping Eastern in the first half or stopping Indiana at all would frequently be possible with raw stud talent playing by instinct.
I backed down last year. New DC I was told. New system, fool. Well, it’s not new anymore. No one in today’s game gets a decade to establish a system. If Appalachian State can manage Mannigham, Arrington, Matthews and Butler with walk-ons, we can manage better than last year with our secondary. If Michigan State can dominate most of a football game with putrid DBs, so can we. If Iowa can mold nasty defensive lineman out of corn oil, tight-ends and spare body parts, then our row of premium four-stars is ready to be twice as nasty…if the coaches are competent.
- Bad tackling will be on them.
- Bad coverage schemes will be on them.
- Safeties futilely chasing TD runs from behind will be on them.
- Turnovers will be on them.
- Weather will be on them.
- Injuries will be on them (speaking of which, whatever happened to the Barwis dividend? If being turned into supermen doesn't help you tackle and stay healthy, then he’s more overrated than Heaven’s Gate).
I look at the Michigan football team, and I don’t see players, I see red litmus paper hovering over a solution know as UConn, that, if basic Michigan coaching is present, will turn that paper Blue.
(FWIW, I feel the paper will turn Blue. I think we shall catch a glimpse of WVU-style offensive firepower against Oklahoma come September 4th en route to an 8-4 season.)
Back several years when they first announced the idea of suites, or "premium seating," Bill Martin and Co. said the effect would be seen all over the stadium, not just in the plush confines for those that could afford to sit there. After walking through the west side of the stadium at the scrimmage on Saturday, I can now say, without a doubt, that he was right.
The "new" Michigan Stadium is simply tremendous for the average fan. There are restrooms everywhere you turn, including at least one that I saw that goes underground (similar to the old restroom underneath the pressbox area). Yes, the walls-as-urinals are gone, but it is huge, and there will be plenty of space for people to get around.
But, to me, the real magic comes in the westside upper concourse, above Row 92. Because it was raining on Saturday, we went up there to watch the scrimmage. We would have braved the rain, but had our 20-month old with us. This may become the best place to watch the game for those with tickets on that side of the stadium. Covered, great view and concessions and restrooms are abundant. Plus, the upper concourse that you can see from Main Street (as well as the similar one on the east side) will pull, the AD says, about 20 percent of the foot traffic from the main concourses. I am guessing this will be a great place for people in rows about 72 and up.
I know he is not in people's minds right now because of the Pimp Hand and some of the nastiness of the NCAA violations, but I have to applaud Bill Martin for a job well done. Whether you were for or against the renovations, they did it right!