(Hoke's words) is not the same Denard we saw last year. That IMO is Brian's point. His options are more limited from under center, unless he takes off from under center and runs the option-which we aren't running.
Let's Not And Say We Did
Michigan's ground game stopped being effective in 1995.
I'm not sure if Jon Chait was reacting to the latest MANBALL quote from Brady Hoke or not, but when an article titled "You Can't Go Home Again" pops up the day after Michigan's new head coach says this:
"Once we get the power play down, then we'll go to the next phase. You know, because we're gonna run the power play."…
"We don't have a lot of fullbacks." Hopkins works out well at FB "for a lot of the old 49ers stuff" with split backs. Hoke wants fullbacks to block so hard they "come in at about 6-3, and leave the program at 6-1." …
It's hard to think otherwise. Of course, even ESPN folk have picked up on Hoke's love affair with the word "toughness"—the article could have been spurred by anything Hoke's said over the last three months. There are consistent reports that Hoke makes condescending comments about the spread at alumni events. Manball? Manball.
Some people love this. In my mind they all look like this…
yes, that's the Beckmann aficionado
…and could be coaching Purdue. I would not want to get in a conversation with any of these people because they would have very strong opinions about things they know nothing about. They would repeat inane aphorisms as if those were the final word on any subject, and they would regard any dispute as evidence of a diseased mind. I have talked to these people on the radio some. It's not fun. I close my eyes and imagine the exact dimensions and color of their mustaches. They are boringly consistent.
My hope is Hoke is a brilliant, innocent-as-snow delegator or a con man. He's got a quarterback who was an All-American as a true sophomore last year because of his legs. He's got an offensive coordinator whose track record suggests he prefers to air it out and that things get desperately bad when MANBALL advocates push him away from his mad bombing ways. He's got a set of running backs best described as underwhelming, a center who can teleport his way into tough reach blocks, and a guard who can block Manti Te'o twenty yards downfield. If the offseason could be spent fixing whatever it is that causes Robinson to turn the ball over willy-nilly, Michigan's offense would be insane. According to statistical things it already is.
Switching to an actual pro-style offense would be doing exactly what Michigan did last year when it installed the 3-3-5 despite the total unsuitability of its personnel for the scheme. It would be exactly as stupid. It can't be as bad statistically because instead of true freshman two star Ray Vinopal backed up by a duck, next to a walk on, and vaguely in front of more freshmen you have ten returning starters and Denard Robinson, but it would be just as dumb. If Hoke's bravado about being a bunch of tough bastards who love grinding out four yards on a power play is true I'm worried for the immediate and long term future of the program in the same way I was when hiring Greg Robinson caused me to dig out a picture of Tweek.
On the other hand, Beckmann aficionados love that stuff, and so do the newspapers that are no longer read by anyone other than Beckmann aficionados. English has developed lingo to distinguish words meant to be true from words meant to produce inoffensive newspaper blather: the latter is coachspeak. Rich Rodriguez was beyond awful at coachspeak. Hoke is a grand master. When IBM develops "Jim" and challenges Hoke to a duel, Watson-style, Hoke will destroy his opponent so badly smoke will come out of its nonexistent ears like that robot asked to rhyme something with "orange" in a story I read when I was eight. Hoke will lament Jim's lack of toughness.
This is a real skill the last three years have shown is way more important than you'd think. It's a relief when every press conference is Hoke being gently tickled on the belly and fed peeled grapes, and telling everyone you're establishing a mindset of toughness is fine. It's something that will help the program in the long run.
As long as you don't believe yourself. It won't help as much as winning a crapton of games, and even if the defense gets vastly better the best way to do that next year is to have an offense that puts up points, and the best way to do that is to very gently shift the offense towards your long term vision while still keeping Denard in the Heisman race.
This isn't 2008, when Michigan was screwed no matter what offense they put in. Getting Michigan's offense to go from explosive but inconsistent to world-destroying is a matter of getting a kicker, finding a good running back, working on Denard's reads and accuracy, and leaving everything else the hell alone. Michigan can't reasonably do that because they've got new coaches, but how hard is it to run a QB lead draw and follow that with QB Lead Oh Noes? The secret of Michigan's 2010 offense is that the zone read was hardly used. The other secret is it was a power running offense, one more effective than anything Michigan's run in at least the last decade and probably a lot longer.
Michigan YPC Career Leaders Since 1949 (min: 100 carries)
Michigan YPC, Team, Since 2001
Borges should install his passing game immediately and Michigan should start running power schemes more frequently—power did feature occasionally last year—if they want to, but lining up under center to hand it off to Vincent Smith isn't going to be any better of an idea in 2011 than it was in 2010.
You can run a "pro-style" offense, but run it from the shotgun and run downhill using Denard Robinson as one of three primary tailbacks. You can't get rid of the scare quotes because he's Denard Robinson. If you do run a no-scare-quotes pro-style offense he's not Denard Robinson anymore. He's the guy handing off and you're walking back into the days where Michigan averaged less than four yards per carry and ran 65% of the time.
I think Borges knows this, but Hoke's coachspeak is going to make this the most terrifying spring game of all time.
You're right, Roundtree, Stonum, Hemingway, Molk, Lewan, Schilling and Patrick Omameh were all scrubs. All of these players have a chance to play at the next level, you don't have a clue if you really think these guys haven't proved anything. You are such a terrible terrible poster.
I don't know if Hoke is an incompetent, dumb, lovable, coachspeaker or not. What I do know; 3 years under RR sucked, soooo.. I'm going to sit back and judge Hoke on what he does, not on a pile of stats designed to persuade me how awesome we are, when my eyes tell me we suck(ed).
I imagine your moustache to be majestic, yet well-groomed. After completing the above post, you took a long sip of your Manhattan and then carefully dabbed your dignified facial hair with a 600-thread count mongrammed Egyptian cotton napkin.
Please say hello to Jack for me.
My point was not that Gordie actually is like that, only that he perfectly epitomised the attitude Brian was talking about, namely "I don't care what actually happened, I KNOW our offense sucked". Nevermind that we gave even the good defenses in the league (e.g. OSU) some of their worst outings of the year.
The 2010 offense was a statistical monster (even against good competition) plagued by inopportune turnovers and lack of a non-Denard rushing game. No more, no less. It certainly didn't "suck" and it certainly wasn't a "disaster". It's extremely difficult to see how running V. Smith up the middle 20 times a game will improve on it.
The defense both sucked and was a disaster.
I don't know that are offense sucked but I am perfectly confident that under 3 years of RR, our team sucked.
My nephews, senior in HS and soph in college, would text me during games, "this is embarrassing". Never once did they text me, exhorting our dominance in some obscure metric.
It doesn't matter how awesome our offensive metrics looked on paper, our team sucked for 3 years. It really is that simple, no fucking metrics needed for this discussion.
Y'all who continue to apologize for RR, bought into the same ponzi scheme I did, I stopped investing, you true believers are still pouring money into a worthless investment.
Our team was mediocre ("sucked" is pretty strong for 7-6, unless you think the team "sucked" in 2005, but w/e) last year because the defense was atrocious. Please explain how huddling up and placing Denard under center fixes the defense.
But seriously (honestly), also explain how putting Denard under center improves the offense, because I truly don't see how it will.
This is what I don't understand about the anti-RR crowd. They can't get this excellent point you made. Instead, they just lump everything together and say: "we just plain sucked. Now hand me my mustache comb." (btw: the mustache meme is already a huge success, because mustaches).
The truth is that our offense was excellent, and would have been more excellenter with a better defense. The truth is also that our defense fucking sucked, and would have sucked even more without such an excellent offense. Both of these things are true.
It is also true that Rich Rodriguez deserves much of the credit for the offense and much of the blame for the defense. I don't understand the painting with the brush that is broad.
You're talking about Auburn right?
I get his point, but his point is irrelevant. The team sucked for 3 years, it doesn't matter if they put up some nice offensive metrics.
Did you see the bowl game, the OSU game, the Wisconsin game? Did you see 2009, 2008? Those years were awful, you are not going to find many people lamenting the loss of a coach, who put that product on the field for 3 years. I am not anti RR, supported him for 3 years, but understood and accepted his firing.
The majority opinion is RR needed to go, Brian thought so as well, but when Harbaugh wasn't hired, the shit hit the fan. The only proper substitute for the be all, end all, spread, was the be all, end all, Harbaugh, and when that didn't happen, Brian went on a months long temper tantrum.
The problem with your argument is that only you (and seemingly your nephews, and possibly your moustache) are the arbiters of "what matters" and is relevant. Our overall record was not necessarily indicative of the quality of our offense. While we all agree that there need to be defensive changes, many think tossing out the whole offense throws the baby out with the moustache coloring solution, if you will. Not unreasonable.
Also love the revisionist history. The people annoyed with the Hoke hiring didn't like 1) the STRONG sense of cronyism it suggested, based on his apparent qualifications and 2) the fact that coaches like Patterson at TCU were seemingly not considered. If anyone has gone on a temper tantrum the last few months, it's "RR WAS TERRIBLE AND STATS ARE MORE TERRIBLE" crowd. A change had to be made, hopefully this was the right one, but it's not a justification of MANBALL for MANBALL'S sake.
I think RR had to go after the bowl game. I don't think handing off from under center will improve our offense. These are not incompatible opinions.
Again, please explain why you believe more pro-style sets will improve the team, given the personnel at hand. This is an honest, and totally relevant, question.
How about this situation. If you lead the American League in runs scored for an entire season, but missed the playoffs because you had one of the worst pitching staffs, would you go out and fix the pitching by getting more hitters? Oh, you wouldn't? Wanna know why? BECAUSE THATS NOT THE REASON YOU'D BE LOSING?
Understand? Probably not. Now go comb that moustache.
After 3 of the worst seasons in franchise history, it was time for the GM to go. RR was responsible for all of it, no matter how hard he tried to distance his meddling hands from the defense and special teams.
Why would I trust RR on his 3rd DC, when he fucked up the first 2 chances in a monumental fashion
I never said anything about RR staying or not. My point was that the new coach shouldn't come in and start running "MANBALL" because what we had wasn't our teams problem.
Tigers are on Fox:) Inge just turned a sweet double play.
My overall point is to judge Hoke on his performance not on his rhetoric. For Brian to feign outrage over Hoke's rhetoric is yawnable.
for one to be skeptical when a proven coach came here and failed and then is replaced by a coach with a losing record at mid-major programs.
Me too, but Brian doesn't have to go all Glen Beck everytime he hears a snide about his beloved, deceased Spread.
Spreads dead baby, Spreads dead
Actually I have no issue with the spread, just the pussification of a spread team, in its Michigan incarnation.
The team was soft
So the offense gained a lot of yards because they were "pussies?"
Or did you mean we had a weak defense that made the team look weak which has nothing to do with offense at all because it's a different side of the ball, which in turn means it has nothing to do with the spread?
You must have missed it - he's a troll and worse, not a funny one. No reason to continue to respond to his idiocy.
why would i not be shocked that you would be a big inge fan?
Michigan essentially went out and hired the best "pitching coach" in the game.
however, the entire premise of this entire article was that the author was worried that the hitting coach is gonna change something that creates fewer home runs and slugging percentage.
Unfortunately, the bulk of their "home runs and slugging percentage" numbers were stockpiled against the likes of the Brewers, Royals, and Nationals. I'm content with smaller overall HRs and SLG numbers if their new hitting coach can help them amass increased and more consistent HRs and SLG numbers against the likes of the Cardinals, Yankees, and Red Sox.
I'm glad that you're using the content of your nephews' text messages as the metric by which to judge our football team's success. That makes total sense to me. And the ponzi scheme metaphor? Say what?
I simply prefer sensible arguments in my arguments. More than one thing can be true at the same time--our offense was great, our defense was horrible, our team lost too many games, and Rodriguez deserved to be fired given the level of expectation for winning at Michigan. Punto.
Brian's concern, if that is at issue, is that Hoke won't see the trees for the forest and will decide to RETURN TO POINTING MICHIGAN DOWNHILL RUNNING TOUGHNESS FOOTBAW for no other reason than he is, as the tag says, the "Notriguez."
FWIW, I do not share this concern. I think Borges is every bit the coordinator that Mattison is, if for no other reason than it is impossible to tell how good a coordinator you are when you have Lewis, Reed, Suggs, and Ngata on your team. I think it would take a colossal idiot not to realize what fell in your lap when Denard falls in your lap, and I do not think Hoke or Borges are anything approaching colossal idiots.
Overall you approve of what RR accomplished. Hope I'm not overanalyzing here
What? He said "Rodriguez deserved to be fired." I would think THAT is incompatible with "overall you approve of what RR did here."
Please tell me that you did not read my entire post (the one you replied to) and this was your interpretation of what I wrote: "I, El Jeffe, approve of what RR accomplished."
My whole point in this thread has been that Brian's concern, while perhaps overheated and overly snarky, is simply a babby and bathwater kind of issue. If I thought that Brady and Al would try to turn this team into Badgers 2.0, with Denard as Bevell/Bollinger/Tolzien, I would share his concern. I do not share that concern, because I believe that Brady and Al are not morons.
To the extent that I have had anything to say about RR, it is this, and this time I'm going to use bullet points so you'll be able to understand it better, hopefully:
- The 2010 offense (note the bold) was among the best in Michigan history, via every conceivable metric that measures how good an offense can be;
- The 2010 defense was among the worst in Michigan history. Just awful. Some due to youth/injuries, some due to scheme/leadership, but in all, just awful;
- The confluence of these led to disappointing (though not awful, at least in 2010) results in the W/L column; and
- Given the way things shook out, it was probably best for RR to be fired. Unfortunate, but probably for the best in the short- to medium-term, which is about all you get these days.
Yeah I know, I'm just fucking with you, tired of this arguement now. Just wanted to see if anyone was still paying attention.
I think the iPad is actually designed with old people in mind.
Gordie I thought you were waiting to kick off to speak? Oh wait you wanted me to shut up. My bad.
This is pure coachspeak I am 99% sure of that. If it isn't the new MANBALL offense will last exactly until halftime of the ND game at which point Borges, Hoke, Denard, Molk, Lewan and Dave Brandon will all nod their heads without anyone speaking a word and start the 3rd qtr in shotgun and Denard will go into the huddle "QB Power on 2, I'll call which direction we go after I read the d just go back to the line we're running this all the way down the field until they put 9 in the box at which point Junior and Daryl will run slants" .
The media tour is targeted right towards the old fucks with lots of money that Brandon swears he wasn't influenced by when he fired RR but actually really was. This is perfect PR and hopefully he keeps it up. I'm scared of Hoke's x and o's because he's never been a coordinator or really influenced anything that breeds confidence, but I like the fact he seems to know that and has hired smart guys to do it for him.
I agree. 9 wins or bust.
This whole 9 wins or bust things sounds stupid to me. It is an unrealistic expectation given a coaching change and a shift in philosophy.
My measuring sticks for Hoke:
1. RR went 3-9 his first season. I expect Hoke to do better. This would be a success as compared to RR.
2. RR went 7-5 in his best season. I expect Hoke - even given the transition to a new offense - to at least match or best that. That would be a success.
3. I would like to score more than 7 against OSU, while at the same time holding them under 40. I do not expect a win, but a competitive game that I am not fast-forwarding by halftime would be an improvement, and staying within 2 scores would be a success.
4. I would like to beat MSU. Not come close, not put up a metricton of yards - I would like the number of points that we score to be more than the numbe that they score. That would be a success.
5. I would like to have a winning record in the B10. Last year - in RR's best season running his zone read, option offense (as opposed to that horrific MANBALL), we were 3-5 in B10 play. With all of Hoke's talk of Red Letter Games, and countdown clocks, I would like to be 5-3 in the B10. This would be a massive success, as it would just about guaranty us a NYD bowl.
6. I would like to see a coaching transition in which a ton of talent does not transfer out. I expect some attrition, but I do not want a redux of last time. That would be a success.
7. I would like Hoke's first full recruiting class to contain some 5* talent, and be made up mostly of 4* talent. On this note, I would like to win 2/3 of the recruiting battles with MSU and at least 25% of those with OSU. I expect that last number to increase overy year until we are back to 50%. That would be a huge success.
9-3 or bust?
Poor Jack Sharp had no idea what he was in for when he responded to Beck, err Beckmann's, tweet. I look forward to him being the posterboy for so many blog posts in the future.
I just get so warm and fuzzy when people trot out our offensive stats from last year. Then I generally vomit on them.
Jesus H. Christ, If me and Bill Gates are the only 2 people in a room, what is the average salary in that room??
We ran raped ape on patsies and got ass raped by real defenses(and some not so real). No amount of stats will make this any less a fact.
What was our "go to" play?? If we needed 4 yds on 3rd down(which never happened because we were at least 3rd and 7 a.k.a. 3rd and Rod) what play will you pull out and run that you just know gives you a better than 80% chance of converting?? Keep in mind your facing OSU or Wisc not UMass.
I cant WAIT to see 2nd and 6, 3rd and 2......FIRST DOWN!! rinse and repeat. I cant WAIT to see a team in winged helmets go out and ESTABLISH SOMETHING for the love of God. Other than that we've got a really fast guy with dreads and untied shoes that, if he doesnt fumble and your linebackers are quick to overpursue(inexperienced) he'll rip off 80yds.
Give me Hoke, Give me wins against OSU, keep your damn heisman.
I will use that in the future but promise to footnote you
I was waiting for you. OSU last year on defense gave up over 400yds of offense to 1 team (Arkansas) the next highest total was generated by Michigan and Miami who tied. We performed this task with our qb playing 1 half. I'm sure if you look at Iowa and Wisconsin you will see similar stats.
If you don't take into acoount yards per play, returning starters, ST and turnovers into your assessment of the offensive scheme and potential for this year( not last years results or random point totals) than you are either not smart or ignorant of advanced stats and continuing a discussion or dialogue is pointless as Brian pointed out.
Stats and more stats. GREAT!! I just love to stand around my OSU, MSU, & Wisc. buddies and compare stats. They are usually laughing to hard to hear me though.
I've demonstrated before how Hawaii & Air Force have often been top 10 in the stats that some michigan fans had resorted to holding up as their case for the previous coach. So, continuing a dialogue with those who are so smart they can rationalize a loaded set of stats into an accurate measure of a team is indeed pointless. I use wins against quality opponents, something you are clearly to "smart" to understand.
to have 2 o's in a word. (sorry, grammar nazi). I do have some sympathy for your argument however. But IMO it's not correct to look at the bad losses and completely ignore the fact that we indeed did move the ball quite nicely against good teams--then fucked ourselves with turnovers. Just because we fucked ourselves with turnovers and had no defense to fall back on doesn't mean we had a bad offense. We did have a bad team. So maybe the change was warranted. But the cupboard is not bare on offense. And scheme continuity does make sense when you have a QB like Denard coming back. Putting him under center the majority of time, as Hoke has stated, is worth being concerned about IMO
Not great, mediocre, unfulfilled, but not bad. We played on New Year's Day for jimminy crickets sake.
But with another NYD Bowl added, it's an undervalued achievement. And yeah, it was bad by Michigan standards. Doesn't 2005 have a nickname around here....?
Bill Gates is retired and doesn't have a salary so the salary in the room would be half of your salary.
Thanks for pointing that out, please substitute any member of the Walton family for Bill Gates. I bet the point is so much clearer now, we all owe you a brownie button.
I don't believe heirs collect salaries, either.
This place used to be so much better. Also, please learn the difference between "too" and "to."
What was Lloyds career winning % against Ohio st?, MSU?, Wisconson?? How many conference chamionships?? How many National Championships??
How about Richard Rod??
Lloyld wouldnt be my preference(he's too old now) and certianly not with his final staff(they were stagnant) but...His career makes your boy look like a flavor of the month. Dont ever forget that.
A worse record than Rich had.
pretend national championships that don't actually exist because college football doesn't have a system that actually crowns a real national champion. Well in that case, Lloyd was way better than Bo....
P.S. he was 6-7 against OSU off the top of my head. Note the number for OSU is BIGGER than the number for Michigan.