"He makes it really easy on you as a coach because he has tremendous football instincts," Michigan tight ends coach Jay Harbaugh said. "Things come really naturally to him. He doesn't have to see things too many times. He has a good sense for how things should look and feel, and he's a tough, physical guy."
Inside the Box Score wears pink for awareness
As I sat down to write this week’s Inside the Box Score diary, I had to ask how long I could keep doing this, week after week, without suffering a letdown. The answer is, apparently, one week longer than Michigan State. Had sparty displayed an ounce of class in our last meeting, I would have responded in kind. They didn’t, so I won’t. You know what they say, karma’s a biatch*, unless she’s your 7thgrade math teacher. True story, my 7thgrade teacher was named Karma Storm. Speaking of karma storms, Dantonio and Bielema got hit with category 5s on Saturday. But I, unlike Beth Mowins, have put the state game behind me, so on to the link.
Burst of Impetus
- I’m sure most folks expected me to go with the safety here. And while that was a big play, it was only worth 2 points and a change of possession. Scratch that, the safety was a big play.
- The main burst of impetus in my opinion was the Avery interception. Purdue had the ball at our 16, down only 12-7. A TD there gives them the lead. A FG makes it uncomfortable. Instead, we get the ball, march down the field (thanks to a big back foot throw from Denard to Gallon) and score making it 19-7. Purdue was never really in it after that. If a guy is shockingly wide open, I don’t care how you get him the ball, you just get him the ball. Braxton Miller and Luke Fickell would agree with me. (That’s Bert Bielema you hear crying in the background.)
- We lost the turnover battle, 2-1, but one of our turnovers was effectively a punt to the five yard line and resulted in the safety, so yeah, not all turnovers are created equal.
- Both teams were 1 of 2 on 4thdown. Purdue, however, made questionable decisions to punt on 4thdown twice in our territory when down 3 scores in the 3rdquarter, but go for it down 4 scores in the 4thquarter. When going for it might have actually affected the outcome of the game, Danny Hope swallowed his mustache.
- Speaking of Danny Hope, I had to enjoy the offensive wizardry he exhibited by having two RBs run into each other on 4thdown. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.
Trash Cans Full of Dirt
- According to the Purdue blog’s preview that Brian linked to, our starting middle linebacker is Mike Jones. (Can someone explain the MIKE JONES meme to me? I try to read every single comment on this blog, but I’ve got a job so some things slip past me.) I thought it was very tricky of Mattison to keep our starting MLB on the bench until the 4thquarter. That Mattison has always got something up his sleeve. Jones tallied 2 tackles.
- One time they showed Mattison on the sidelines, he kept making this scratching move with his finger over his mouth. This is either an interesting audible call, or Mike Martin still had spinach on his teeth from Angelo’s Eggs Benedict. Mmmm, Angelo’s.
- The leading tackler was Desmond Morgan, with 9. Gordon and Martin had 7 each. I like that balance, a lineman, an LB, and a DB were the top 3 tacklers.
- How fitting was it that just after Beth Mowins told us about Kovacs being injured, Purdue broke off their long touchdown run. That really highlighted how important Kovacs has been to the defense this year. We’ve only given up two 40+ yard gains this season, and both were sans Kovacs.
- We had 7 TFLs that included 4 sacks. Mike Martin, our original trash can full of dirt, picked up 2 TFLs and 2 points. Martin also inspired this quote from Craig Roh, “I know he’s going to beast his guy, so I have to beast my guy.”
- J.T. Floyd had 2 pass break-ups.
- Purdue was held to 311 yards. I love watching good defense.
- 21 players show up in the defensive stats section. Lots of guys got valuable experience in the 4thquarter.
- With apologies to Denard, this section belongs to Fitzgerald Toussaint this week. In fact, I will refer to him as Filthgerald. Filthgerald gained 170 yards on 20 carries, scored 2 TDs, had a long of 59 yards, and averaged 8.5 YPC. Can someone explain to me again why he only got two carries against staee? Forget that last comment, I’ve moved on.
- Denard did have a nice 28 yard run and gained 63 yards on 15 carries.
- To my untrained eye, it sure seemed like Purdue had a spy on Denard for the whole game, that helped open things up for Filthgerald. Sometimes you’ve got to take what the defense gives you.
- Denard was 9 of 14 (nice completion percentage) for 170 yards.
Big John R. Studd Referee Section
- A. Kemp was our referee. He was a new face to me. It's nice to see some youngerish guys running around out there, one's you know, that might actually still be able to see.
- Purdue had 8 penalties to our 5, so I think the refs did a fine job. They missed a face mask or two, but there was nothing outrageous. ESPN did fail to show replays of a couple personal fouls, including the one on Lewan. Anyone know what he did to draw that flag?
- Denard drew an offsides penalty from Purdue with a hard count. That’s two weeks late, but whatever.
Roundtree and Gallon each caught a 40+ yard pass, but I think I was just as excited to see Brandon Moore catch one. TE depth, we haz it? (Someone insert an adorable kitten picture here.)
[ED:BISB: Needs moar kitty]
- On one of the Denard-as-WR-plays, it looked like the CB was playing tight coverage and was expecting the run. Just once, wouldn’t it be cool to see Denard run a fly pattern right past the CB? Again, probably saving this for ohio. I hope Fickell doesn’t read this, but that assumes he knows how.
- For just one week I’d like to not have something to report here. This was our pink game. Most guys had some combination of pink wrist bands and pink gloves.
- I have one question for Denard, Y U no wear pink?
- Our regular two hexadecimalists, Hawthorne and Cavanaugh, are now the 2ndstring LB and a special team player. This section was in danger of going away until…
- Thank goodness for 5G, Frank Clark. It’s nothin’ but a G thang, Frank. Clark tallied an assisted tackle, but he was around the ball a lot and showed promise.
- I’m pretty sure Chris Spielman still hates us, but I thought this section heading was more in keeping with the overall feel of the blog.
- Our announcers for the game were the aforementioned Beth Mowins, Mike Bellotti, and Shelley Smith. Can someone put a mirror under Mike’s nose to see if he’s still alive? Actually, I thought he did a good job limiting his comments. I wouldn’t be upset if we got more Bellotti.
- What happened to Shelley Smith? Wasn’t she a lead anchor on the worldwide leader? Now, she’s doing three or four sideline pieces on ESPN2. I had to feel sorry for her when it started raining. (Ladies reading nod knowingly.)
- I tried really hard to find something wrong with the announcing crew. I came up with these two things. Beth may have called Odoms, “Mar-TOE-vious,” and she sounds too much like Pam Ward for my liking. Oh yeah, she brought up the state game every five minutes.
- Beth did mention that Brady Hoke was showing “Michigan Man Toughness” for wearing short sleeves in 40 degree weather. Can we give Beth 10 MGoPoints for combining memes? Tremendous job, Beth.
Random, as Yet Unnamed, Bullets
- The previously mentioned Purdue blog also gave the edge to Purdue’s punters, Wiggs and Webster. They are in a fierce battle to be the space emperor of West Lafayette. Space Emperor of Space? Not so much. Since our punter didn’t punt until the 4thquarter, that comparison was basically moot.
- I didn’t remember it was homecoming until I saw all the different looking tubas. Some were bronze, some were silver, some had M covers on them. Strange, what jogs the memory. I hope everyone had a happy homecoming. 36-14 helps in that regard.
- Gibbons was 2 for 2, one from 37 yards and one from 22. Wile put one through the uprights from the 45 on a kickoff. I can haz 65 yard field goals? (More kitten photos…)
- We had 294 yards in the first half, and it was a balanced attack overall. Some Denard running, lots of Fitz running, some Denard passing, contributions from Smith, Shaw, and Devin. 535 yards total.
- Will Jet Pack Guy inspire an MGoBlog photoshop thread a la Lloyd Brady and Face Palm Guy? Add in the guy in the backwards hat (who I refer to as Michigan Turtle) in this Mitch McGary photo and you have the makings of an MGoEntourage.
* I did a site search on “biatch” and “bee-yotch” and got 57 and 0 hits, respectively, so biatch it is.