it was louder on the TV broadcast. a lot louder.
I live 10 miles from Scripps Ranch, but never got a chance to see Tate play down here. However, I do have an idea about the teams he's played down here and the teams he's playing up there, and after watching all the youtube clips I'm having troubling thoughts about the possibility that some linebacker might remove Tate's head from his shoulders early in the season. This makes our depth chart look like this:
- Next of Kin
- The Guy We Put In The Formation Because We Can't Direct Snap To The Other Team
What do you think of Tate's ability to avoid tackles, and more importantly, decapitation?
It will help a lot if Michigan ends up with a consistent counterpunch to the scrape exchange Western was running most of the day. Smart Football has a primer on the thing if you want detail. If you just want a sentence: on a scrape read the backside defensive end automatically crashes down on the TB and quarterback contain falls to a linebacker or, sometimes, a cornerback. Since the quarterback is supposed to read the defensive end, that means he'll keep the ball and then meet a linebacker, often in the backfield.
This is a frequent response to the zone read. Last summer, I UFRed the West Virginia offense against Rutgers and saw Schiano's guys do this on almost every play:
(Big original here.) This is a variant on the scrape where the backside DE is tasked with the gap on the backside and it confused West Virginia for a while until they started running the QB directly at it and busting Slaton into the open field. A lot of teams are going to play games with Michigan in an attempt to screw up their reads.
It's not good. Tate was keeping the ball a lot and then dancing past linebackers and corners for 3-5 yards.
You've already seen a couple of counter-punches. One is the backside veer that looks like a zone read but sees a fullback or h-back pull to wipe out the normally unblocked DE. The idea here is for the back to quickly hit the gap between the DE and the DT, as it's just been vacated by the scraping linebacker. Done properly, it sees a running back shoot immediately into cavernous space, as Brandon Minor did on touchdowns against Wisconsin and Purdue. (Viddler's finally really killed my account dead, so I can't bring it to you. Lo siento.)
The other counter-punch you've seen was deployed frequently against Western: the zone read to a bubble or long handoff. Unless the opponent is getting super-aggressive you'll usually see soft coverage behind the corner version of the scrape—it's basically a corner run blitz—and since the corner to your side is coming up to take you, the wideout over there tends to be wide open.
A more direct answer to your question: yes, I'm sure the coaches would rather have Tate throw and other people run. Rodriguez on the 23 carries his quarterbacks provided:
"That’s probably more than we’re accustomed to," Rodriguez said. "We probably gave more, particularly to Denard in the first game, just so they would get the experience."
That is likely to be their high water mark for the season, Forcier particularly.
Although I don’t think that recommending voluntary workouts makes them involuntary, the NCAA is probably going to come up with some new vague description of non-countable time. My question is that every D-1 coach since the beginning of time has used extra drills, runs, etc. as a requirement for disgraced players to earn their way back onto the playing field. If I recall correctly even the oft revered Lloyd Carr had Manningham do weeks of extra stadium climbs to make up for failing two drug tests. If there is any fallout from this probe will it change the way coaches administer in-house punishment from now on?
I don't know about Manningham and stairs, but it was public knowledge that Adrian Arrington had a strict 6-AM stairs regimen to get through if he was going to remain on the team after a couple of disciplinary instances.
A couple of people have mentioned this: these workouts are most definitely not voluntary, as the alternative is finding another school, and yet no one's ever brought this up. The only thing I can think of is that the Arrington punishment and other like things fit underneath the eight-hours-supervised a week.
This whole NCAA violations ridiculousness has made me miss the days of Carr's stern skepticism and distance with the media. Would Carr have let two freshman talk to the media so candidly? Will this cause Rodriquez to clamp down on which players are made available for interviews (what is the policy now?)? If the Free Press has to eat their words, what would be the ramification in the press corps for them?
Thanks and GO BLUE!
Since the freshmen were interviewed at Media Day, I don't think you'll see that access curtailed except to certain members of the media who abused it. More broadly, I know all player interviews have to be approved by the department and you might see the freshmen harder to get at in the future, especially if you are on the Enemies List.
The thing is: it's not like the freshmen here said anything that they shouldn't have. They merely described their summer conditioning activities. No "everybody murders" here, just a description of lifting and working on coverage and watching film. It wasn't even particularly candid. It was just a boilerplate description of activities every football program does. If there's someone at fault here, it's not them.
As to the Free Press ending up with zero after an investigation: the ramifications will be zero. They'll probably get an award anyway. No one at the Free Press is going to get a one-on-one with anyone associated with the program, again, but pulling credentials is a guaranteed media firestorm and who wants another one of those?
One question: Is it louder?
It didn't seem obviously louder except a few times when there seemed to be an echo, which implies that noise is getting reflected back into the stadium. It wasn't exactly a tense game, though, and Michigan Stadium doesn't get really loud unless it's called upon to do so. If Notre Dame has the ball for a key fourth quarter drive that's when we'll find out.
I should point out that other people think it's way louder, although I can't find that tab I thought I had open.
Although I thought it would sound stupid, I was just going to say that. It seemed louder on TV and in particular, I thought I heard the PA announcer much more throughout the game than in years past. Glad I'm not crazy.
That may be a result of decisions by the production staff, keeping the crowd noise levels high in the mix. I agree that we won't really find out how loud it gets until we're in a tight, exciting game.
I thought the game seemed louder on TV, and so did many others, but I assume that this can be somewhat manipulated by the stations.
For instance, if you switch back and forth between the exact same hockey game on FSD and CBC, the crowd noise levels seem vastly different.
It seemed louder on TV than previous games, but then I would also jack the volume up every time they played that kickass Kenny Chesney song, so maybe it just seemed louder because I had the volume on my TV so high. YEAH! THIS IS OUR MOMENT, BABY!
Was it this thread?
Thank you, thank you, thank you. X's and O's are not only more interesting to me than all of the recruiting speculation, they may also, over time, educate some of the football "experts" who sit around me in Section 23. I can't tell you how often I want to turn around and correct someone, but if I took every opportunity, I would 1. never see the game, and 2. alienate everyone who sits near me. Football is a complex game, but considering its popularity I'm always amazed at how little most fans know about how it's played.
Keep up the edumication!
...the media is not to be trusted
Helen Bryant: "They'll break your heart, honey!"
Helen Vernando: "If a guy won't tell you what the subject of the article he's writing is, watch out."
Helen Bryant: "Or if he owns his own pool cue."
30 Helens Agree: The media is not to be trusted.
Helen number 30 was late!
29 Helens agree, punctuality is important!
IMO this will end with the Freep being able to justify the story, at least to themselves and the satisfaction of the other MSM. That's because, while it's undeniably true that all of the shortcomings Brian has pointed out are there, two other things are true: 1- since all schools do this (operating in the grey area or going slightly over the limits) then logically this means that there is some small violation, which will be uncovered because 2- no one else is being investigated. This means likely that we will find something, which we will self-punish for, which will then provide enough publicity to allow them to claim victory, no matter that it will be far, far short of what they implied. Which sucks almost as hard as the original article.
They can claim whatever they want, but I don't think the average guy on the street will agree with them. Their credibility has taken a hit.
But remember, the average guy on the street gets his news from the Freep. I cannot tell you how many times I have had to explain the term "noncountable hours" to my friends and coworkers in the past two weeks. I am sure we all have lived the same experience.
Now, the explaination for noncountable hours I lifted straight from these pages, which lifted its explaination straight from the NCAA's pages, and for that I am grateful to the community here and to Brian. Cheers, and come ask me for your pint of reward when you see me in the back corner of Ashley's.
unfortunately, i'm afraid you might be right that there will be something and we will be punished. that said...
if everyone's doing it, shouldn't everyone be punished? i'm not excusing any disregard for the rules. if we're guilty, i'd rather fess up and take my punishment - and find out how to work within the rules. but if it's as widespread as these studies are saying, maybe it's time to look at the rules?
fundamentally, i don't have a problem with the rules the way they are. i do recognise that to be the best, you're going to put in that extra time. sure, there are some athletes who enjoy the work. but i don't doubt that there's a ton of peer pressure on all the athletes to attend the "voluntary" workouts. i wouldn't necessarily suggest relaxing the rules so people are no longer "violating" them.
but with the college football landscape what it is now, i can't see schools, or athletes, scaling back the amount of work they put into their athletics, voluntary or not. that is, unless the ncaa gets really, really heavy-handed. i just don't see that happening. those heavy hands would have to spread far and wide to achieve their objective.
That is a serious question that I want everyone with an opinion on the Freep article to think about for a moment. An athlete at a high-powered D-1 program is going to be aggressive with his/her goals, and is going to be determined to sacrifice to accomplish them. So in that sense, are any of these activities voluntary?
We laud Peyton Manning when he obsessively studies film for hours on end (in college and high school, mind you). We love the tenacity of Mike Hart leading grueling offseason workouts after the disappointment of 2005. We admire the ethic of the scrappy linebacker "willing to do the extra work" necessary to earn the starting job. In short, we praise all this VOLUNTARY work...yet when the Freep decides to label it a NCAA violation, we fret about what an investigation might find.
F--k the investigation. Investigators will find nothing, because voluntary (or "voluntary") work is inevitable, natural, and admirable. These athletes will proudly declare they volunteered for this work, because volunteering for extra work is (again) an admirable trait in an athlete, and a necessary part of achieving goals.
This is the issue that has been driving me crazy- aggressive, motivated, and determined athletes (like the ones you find playing football at Michigan) will feel compelled to do LOTS of extra conditioning, lifting, film study, etc, and there is nothing wrong with that. Athletes will feel compelled to do this extra work regardless of what the coaches, the NCAA, or the Freep says. Being competitive means being willing to "go the extra mile" (you didn't really think that cliche had no meaning with athletes, did you?). It is inevitable, natural, necessary, and one more time, admirable.
Ultimately, it comes back to that question I initially asked and the Cartys and Rosenbergs of the world don't want to discuss- in high stakes competitive athletics, is anything truly optional or voluntary?
Obviously the answer is no, but there is no shame in that, for the coaches or the athletes. You do the maximum you can do, in order to achieve your goals. No matter what label the NCAA decides to put on it, there is nothing wrong with all these extra hours and there is no scandal in not attempting to curb it.
It may not be louder, but it sure is shadier. Being the mild level alcoholic that I am I find myself recovering from many a hangover in the stands on game days. I approve of this shade.
This should probably be filed under "Conspiracy Theories," but the first of his columns for SI.com came on August 20, just a week before the Free Press "investigation" was published.
What are the odds he used this story as a way of getting SI's attention? "Hey, I'm about to become nationally-known for breaking a huge story that will result in Rodriguez getting fired and sanctions for Michigan football." I'd say quite good. That would explain the rush to publish before nailing down the whole non-countable versus countable thing, or rather, the willingness to be dishonest and hide that basic truth.
I'd say too bad for SI that the story has fallen apart and will continue to do so, but in truth all they're looking for is name recognition and Rosenberg certainly achieved that.
We sit in the top row, end zone. There was a very definite echo on the PA, not objectionable, but close. I think they've got the volume up on the PA as far as they can take it without causing problems.
It also seemed louder during those times in the first half when the crowd got into it, but it's a little hard to tell, since there were no critical plays. And of course, I'm in no position to comment on noise at field level, where you really want it.
This week should be the real test. Five or six ND false starts and a few delay of game calls would be great!
After talking to friends in different locations around the stadium, I think there are wildly different opinions on how loud the stadium has become. As for me, I'm up near the top of the stadium in section 18, which puts me in the last section covered by the new structures. I think the crowd noise was much louder than in years past. However, friends that sit in the south end zone felt there was no change in volume. Could it be that folks in the end zone won't notice much of a difference? Or could it be that folks down low aren't hearing an increase because the sound is being deflected above them? This is the first time I've heard the band much at all since they moved to the student section, albeit I was hearing their echo bouncing off the new east side suites. Coming from my perspective, that's better than not hearing them at all. Can't wait to hear how loud we can make the place against the Irish!
We sit in section 16, row 86 (south end zone, off the corner, about 2/3rd's way up).
Of 6 long-term season ticket holders sitting in our group (mostly 20 years plus alumni types), 5 agreed with my assessment at halftime that I could hear absolutely no difference in noise over previous years.
1 person disagreed and thought it was "much louder"
I'll point out that the 5 were men, the 1 was a woman ... without further comment on what impact gender might have on the issue.
I think there is a good chance that the new echo affect doesn't really reach the end zone seats ... but I personally have been going to these games since 1972 and sat in these seats since the mid 80's .... It sounded exactly the same to me in volume and tone.
like the end zone sections aren't much louder, whereas the sideline sections are, from the comments. I'll be in the end zone for Penn State so I'll get to compare.
sitting in section 1, row 87, which is 50 yard line about 2 or 3 rows from the top. I've been going to games for years and felt that it was very loud--definitely louder than before. When the crowd spelled out M-I-C-H-I-G-A-N it seemed louder than in years past except for the 50 yard line press box side which is always the quietest. I'll be watching at home this weekend so hopefully those who are going will be fired up.
FWIW: I was in the pregame block for the Utah game last year as well as the Western game this year, and I thought that it was definitely louder this year than it was last year.
I was standing near the tunnel after the game and Brandon Graham was being interviewed so there were several press people around him. Roh started to talk near this group and one of the coaches (I think it was Frey) grabbed him be the arm and pulled him towards the tunnel with a "come on, you ain't sayin' shit" kind of look.
I'm sure BG is on the approved to give interviews list.
i sat in section 37, row 87, northeast corner, which means that our band was (sorta) facing me and the western band was at the other end of the field, same sideline as me...there were numerous occasions where i thought our band was playing (if softly), and it turned out i was hearing an echo of western's band coming off the lux boxes directly over our band. does that make sense?
also - during the postgame band show (my stepson plays trombone), we sat on the pressbox side, midfield, ten rows up...and you could hear the sound echoing off the lux boxes BEHIND both bands, a second or two after they got done playing. i don't know if i've noticed that in the past.
the sound is definitely getting trapped and rattling around in the stadium. that means more sound energy inside, equals louder. i can't wait to see what it means when a crowd gets really cranked up.
I was not sure it was louder but then again it was Western Michigan.
I don't think that punishing a player for violating team rules is consistent with the intent of the NCAA mandatory workout limits.
Lloyd could have simply kicked Arrington off the team, thus revoking his scholarship for violating team rules. Instead, he gave Arrington a choice: run stairs at 6am and MAYBE you will get a second chance.
The intent of the NCAA workout limits is to (1) protect the student-athlete from being overworked such that their academic obligations suffer and (2) keep coaches away in the off-season to maintain a level playing field.
This is just my interpretation of the spirit of the rules and I don't think situations like Arrington's are what the NCAA was trying to regulate when the limits were enacted.
... if it was louder, unless you had some Fancy Electronic Device and could compare measurements from past years. We all wanted it to be louder, so it seemed louder. I was on the 50, halfway up, press box side, and it certainly seemed louder than any WMU game had a right to be. We'll know more this Saturday when the full-throated roar is unleashed. Only truly objective observation: a very clear echo of the PA announcements off the new east side facade. Ergo, the crowd noise must also be bouncing around. Don't know if that's true in the end zones.
it certainly seemed louder. It sounded louder on the tv, also. Significantly.
There was a point shortly before halftime, when it was already 31-0 that it was incredibly loud. Especially considering Western and a blowout.
Please no more music during the game though. As much as the teenage girls behind me loved singing sweet caroline, this is Not Good. Let the band play it.