Sometimes I make my girlfriend read me MGoblog articles while I'm doing something else. That way, she learns a little more about football, and I get to multitask.
Today when she was reading to me the Hello: Ross Douglas post, she came up with a pretty good question. She wanted to know: does Douglas project to nickle-corner, vs. boundary or field-corner only because of his size? Her rationale was that with gurus praising his technique and reliability, but not labeling him a star because of his lack of big play risk-taking, wouldn't it serve better to put a CB who is more of a gunslinger risk-taker in the nickel role where he has safety help at all times, and line Douglas up outside at either field or boundary corner?
Don't worry, I know I have a keeper on my hands if she was able to come up with a question like that. :)
Size is a suggestive but not determining factor. When we do these things we're peering at the roster and seeing where player X fits in and trying to figure out how the coaches see their players, but often the coaches are surprised when the kid shows up and they figure out what they actually have. If Douglas is the best guy to play on the outside, he'll play on the outside.
With bigger and more touted corners in the same class it would be an upset if he's the guy tasked with running down the Michael Floyds of the world. Insert mental image of Boubacar Cissoko trying to do that here. Sometimes this happens: Desmond Morgan isn't the ideal size for WLB, Craig Roh is probably going to be a little light for SDE, etc. In an ideal world it seems like Michigan wants six-foot-plus guys on the outside.
That's easier said than done. Michigan is swinging for the fences with Conley and Stribling, hoping they can be 6'2" cover corners the NFL has a riot about. If that doesn't work out, Lewis and Douglas are less risky prospects with lower upside.
In re: wanting more of a gambler underneath with the solid and unspectacular guys outside: I don't think defensive coaches think like that. They give you an assignment and they want you to execute it, and not executing it is always very bad. If player X comes to college doing this thing a coach doesn't want, the coach will try to stop it. In Douglas's case that may be taking advantage of his athleticism and being more aggressive. In hypothetical gambler's case that would be not giving up big plays. Whether a corner is on the inside or outside, I bet they prefer the former.
I'm watching the a rerun of Under the Lights game on ESPN and watching some highlights of the 97 defense on my computer…
…and I can't stop thinking about what would happen in a matchup between Floyd and Woodson. Woodson has the speed and size to keep up with Floyd but then again Floyd looks so much bigger and stronger than CW. I know it's a huge hypothetical but what do you think would happen there?
And what size should we be looking for at corner to stop big receivers like Floyd in the future?
Also, I notice Mattison has a tendency to slant the DL pretty often in the 97 highlights and honestly, it's working. Is this the style of slants Mattison we should expect to see this season?
Thanks for the time and Go Blue! - AJ, UM 2014
Woodson took on a huge, elite outside receiver in 1997: David Boston. He is 6'2" and went 8th overall in the next NFL draft. Floyd is 6'3" and went 13th overall. Boston had a body-building/roid freakout at the next level, but in college he was at Floyd's level. What happened in the 1997 game between the two was one Woodson slip and fall leading to an OSU touchdown and nothing else. Michigan won with 189 yards of offense.
Woodson's gone on to prove himself an NFL hall of famer (7 times all pro). Let's not forget how ridiculously good he was and is. Woodson probably would have fared a little worse than he did in 1997 since the personnel surrounding him wouldn't have been as good, but you can pick a college receiver in the past 20 years and I'm taking Woodson and the points.
In re: cornerback size, see above. Woodson is listed at 6'1", and Michigan is hoping to put out a steady stream of 6-foot-ish cover corners. Again, easier said than done.
In re: DL slants. Yeah, one of the advantages of the under is that you can have the line go one way, drop the WDE into coverage, and send the SLB. By doing this you've flipped your defense at the snap, and this is often confusing to opposing OL. I don't think it'll be much of a problem for Bama and its veteran, All-American-laden line; others may have a bear of a time trying to figure out exactly who they're supposed to block on any given play.
The upside of having a couple of undersized guys at the five and three is that Michigan will be much better able to play games that shoot guys into the backfield unblocked. The downside is when that doesn't work and someone gets manhandled one-on-one. The linebackers are going to have to take on a lot of blocks this year.
I spotted this graffiti on the back of a stop sign near my office in Los Angeles. Could Taco Pants be considering a transfer to USC?
A "these are my readers" moment.
A little something I made for you guys
Made it for my dad, who lurks on your blog. Thought I would share. You can use it if you like. There are definitely bronies reading the blog.
I just found out about them a few months ago. I was totally sure the friend who explained it to me was 100% putting me on to see how far she could take it before I figured out it was all b.s.
One problem is that I didn't realize that there was an actual SHOW you could watch. I thought these were guys who just collected the toys and combed the manes and tales with those awkward little pink combs, and swapped barrettes with each other. The TV show makes it a little more credible. I mean, I love Phineas and Ferb and I'm in my 40s.
Candace: No... That why they make smart word box for tell monkey hard brain-hurty things.
Phineas: Removing prepositions makes it more condescending.
"It would be a travesty, it would be ridiculous to all of a sudden come back and get the feeling back, get the health back, feel good again and then all of a sudden go throw some other colors on my shirt and go coach."
For various reasons, aside from the avatar, I don't mention it much on MGoBlog as I really don't feel as if I need to defend this and it isn't germain to virtually any discussions on the board, but that's sort of how it happened in my case with the latest incarnation of the show, and you wouldn't be alone in that initial shock there.
It likely doesn't help my street cred that I am also a rabid Trekkie though.
"Funny isn't it, how naughty dentists always make that one fatal mistake."
Just finished watching the 97 Defense during my lunch. JHC we had a NO FLY ZONE. Woodson and Ray were ballhawks. Steele and Sword were beasts. The hit Sword laid on the Minny QB where he basically just pushed him over is an all timer for me (22:04). Man I can't wait till we get back to this D.
I remember the Notre Dame game where our offense was doing all they could to give the game away, but knowing we would still win because of how stout our defense was.
Over the years, I've always had the feeling that no Michigan lead is safe (especially the Hermann years where no lead really was safe), but that was the one year where I was absolutely confident that if we needed a stop, we would get it.
And the most beautiful thing about last year was I started to feel some of that confidence.. that when other teams lined up for third and short or fourth and short, we would stop them.
That is to good to be true and know way she knows what the difference of the corners are. She reads it to you for fun, and you listen to her. That is way too much. If it is true please post a nude pic of her please. I know she will easily do that for you if she reads mgoblog to you, and can break down recruits.