"The guy in question is apparently a legendarily yappy guy. He got what he was coming to him."
If you ever have children, be sure not to teach them that foolish line of thinking.
INSTANT IMPACT; LATER IMPACT
First, in terms of player development, which position is the hardest to develop a freshman at for them to see playing time immediately. Conversely, which position is the easiest for a freshman to make a significant impact at without needing to redshirt or know the system inside and out? (Excluding punter and kicker)
Offensive line is by far the most difficult. Most incoming offensive linemen are man-mountains who have never seen anyone on their level in an actual football game. That is why almost all OL redshirt even in times of extreme need. See: Michigan last year. The reason OL are so hard to project is because they are so much farther from finished products than everyone else, and technique is paramount.
After OL there is a big drop to the next most difficult spot, which is QB. Freshman quarterbacks are nearly always pick-laden disasters. Next is probably linebacker, which both requires a lot of bulking up to be effective and constant reading of plays to see whether it's run or pass.
The easiest spots to make a freshman impact are the ones where athleticism is paramount and intelligence a nice bonus instead of a requirement: skill positions on offense and cornerback. NFL Wonderlic scores by position are a good proxy for how difficult it is to play position X right away:
I'm surprised LBs aren't higher.
In fact, the post that comes from references Mario Manningham's 6 on that test; Manningham was Michigan's most productive freshman receiver in a long time. (Martavious Odoms has since surpassed his first year production, but in a context of total roster chaos.)
Secondly, which conference is worse: B1G at football or SEC at basketball? I was watching a Georgia vs LSU game and it was atrocious. However, a Purdue vs. Illinois football game would be just as bad. Which conference has the ability to turn the corner and be a nation powerhouse?
They're virtually identical: nationally embarrassing save a couple programs at the top. Big Ten football coaches don't complain nearly as much about their place in the firmament, so SEC basketball wins worst conference.
Seriously. Remember that bit last year where everyone in the SEC whined about their bubble teams getting shipped to the NIT, whereupon they would lose in the first round? It was recently compounded by Ole Miss's coach claiming the reason the SEC is perceived to suck is because they're too good at football:
“I just think it’s an easy company line, and I do think there is a bias in the national media. They get tired of talking about the SEC because it dominates in football. They just get tired of talking about it, so when there’s an opportunity to talk about something else, that’s what they’re going to do,” said Kennedy, who went on to use Kentucky as an example of the nation’s perception of the league.
Kennedy complained that the SEC teams getting snubbed had similar profiles to the mid-majors that got in, which 1) well, yeah, that's what happens, and 2) one of those mid-majors that got in, LaSalle, beat 4-seed Kansas State and then his own damn team to reach the Sweet 16. The committee's decision to pass over SEC teams last year was vindicated in spades and they're still complaining about it. So, yeah. Worst conference: SEC basketball.
WHEN CAN WE JAM AND SLAM MAN
Seattle won the super bowl and (sigh) sparty won the big ten playing virtually the same aggressive, almost illegal, defense. Countess returns, they have two 5 star recruits in Peppers and Thomas, and they have several larger DB on the roster who have had game experience. Have you heard/do you think Michigan will be playing more an aggressive defense similar to those teams this football season?
I know what you're getting at but first let me note that MSU and Seattle run different schemes. MSU is an aggressive cover 4 that keeps two safeties at about nine yards and uses them to hammer down at runs. Seattle is an aggressive cover 3 that keeps one deep safety for centerfield purposes and runs a lot of press coverage on the outside because they can get away with it.
But they do share one very obvious commonality. They have their corners at the line of scrimmage, ready to get in the opponent's grill and reroute them against their will. In contrast, Michigan's defense was a passive bend-but-don't-break unit last year. As per every coordinator in the history of questions about desired changes, Michigan wants to get more aggressive. I bet you one dollar that something along those lines is said at the first spring press conference.
And in this case I think you can see the direction Michigan wants to go is big ol' corners that will put you on the sideline and be generally huge when you try to go over the top of this. Hoke has brought in the following corners after the grab-anyone transitional class:
Michigan also recruited Gareon Conley, another rangy 6'2" guy, and has seen enough from their current secondary that Douglas has been flipped to tailback after his redshirt year. Other than Richardson, who is the traditional tiny Cass Tech corner Michigan is duty-bound to take, the only other short corners were another Cass guy Michigan was duty bound to take and a guy no longer at the position.
While grabbing Peppers doesn't tell you anything other than Michigan is not run by complete nutcases, Michigan extending a camp offer to Watson while they still had a number of high profile DBs on the board does tell you something. Watson is a press fiend. Hit 1:40 on this video.
All the buzz from his commitment was that he was capital-P Physical and the only guy in camp with a prayer of checking Canteen, and "physical" is the first word out of the coaches' mouths when he comes up as a signee. That indicates the direction Michigan would like to go in, and it is towards MSU/Seattle-type defenses that are inviting you to try and throw a fade over a big corner.
HOWEVA, I'm not sure we see much of that nose-to-nose play this year. Michigan didn't like it with their personnel a year ago and that personnel returns. The addition of Peppers figures to be a nickel package thing at first, when press is often counterproductive. Even if Peppers emerges into a starter, press + freshman is playing with fire. Seems like Michigan will have to wait for 2015 to seriously amp up the pressure on the outside.
CAN I TELL AARON CRAFT HE'S ADOPTED?
The recent "Marcus Smart pushes loudmouth fan" incident has me ruminating on what is the ideal fan behavior at sporting events. Many of us often decry the laid-back atmosphere at football games with fans showing up late or presenting a "down in front!" mentality throughout, but at the same we look on in horror at stories of verbal assaults or flying trashcans we hear about at Ohio or West Virginia. Where is the line? (Obviously physical aggression is well past the line.)
Does calling someone a "piece of crap" rise to an egregious level where one should remove themselves from attending any live events for a year as the Texas Tech fan is doing or is that overly sensitive? Should sporting events exist in a weird other world where things that would otherwise be off-limits are somehow acceptable (the same way one can wear a bikini to the beach but would be fired instantly if they wore it to work)? And if so, should that be the case?
Basically, I'd appreciate your thoughts on how one should balance their impassioned fan-dom with common human decency.
First, there is no way that guy called Smart a "piece of crap" unless it was part of a larger stream of profanity. The guy in question is apparently a legendarily yappy guy. He got what he was coming to him.
In general, anything that you could fire off at one of your friends while giving them crap is in-bounds. Justin Beiber chants, deport Stauskas, etc.: fine. Anything about a person's game, or lack thereof, is fine. Generalized group insults like "ugly parents" are also fine. No one is going to lose their head over an obviously general comment not individually applicable. And if someone is acting seriously outside the bounds of propriety, you may as well tell them. The Auburn fans in the infamous Marshall Henderson GIF are giving him both verbal barrels; they've been provoked and anything they happen to be saying about Henderson is probably true. It doesn't change anything, but it feels good.
Just don't bring anyone's sister into things. Making things personal is where things start getting into Smart/jerko territory. You can only yell that Aaron Craft is adopted if he's not adopted. Or you're his secret biological dad, because funny is funny.
"The guy in question is apparently a legendarily yappy guy. He got what he was coming to him."
If you ever have children, be sure not to teach them that foolish line of thinking.
While my son is too young to be getting advice from me, I feel comfortable eventually telling him that there are situations where a fan's actions could be reasonably expected to cause some harm to come to them.
The example I always think of is when ASU (Arizona) fans used to chant PLO when playing Steve Kerr and Arizona (backstory here). While I would have completely understood if Kerr had gone into the stands, the remarkable thing there is that he did not. In a sense, Kerr's example is the best to cite in these sitautions since turned the other cheek, however I also think it is a case where a fan chanting like that should be held accountable.
Edit: nevermind, didn't read the whole thing.
Did not know of this Kerr stuff. Thanks for the knowledge.
it's ok for adults to insult college players and possibly throw out racial slurs because they think they can get away with it.
Is there any actual evidence of this? Or are we just going with it bc a black athlete pushed a white fan?
and why I said potentially. There's very little evidence either way, Orr says he said "piece of crap", Smart said it was the n word and was adamant about it talking to his coaches. There was a crappy video released by Tech that has a relatively clear "piece of crap" that can somehow be heard when nothing else from the crowd is audible, but besides that, Orr clearly said more to Smart when Smart was up in his face, and it's not like Smart waited 3 days to release a statement to say thats what he heard, he was said right away so it's doubtful he's making it up in self-defense.
That wasn't really the point, though. That poster was basically suggesting it's fine to hurl whatever taunts or insults you want at kids way younger than you because they can't do anything back and it's foolish to think Orr deserved a small shove when Smart could have easily busted his face open. I think that's a pretty stupid sentiment. But there have already been too many posts on that subject here.
So TT doctored the tape? If true, that would actually be something in this story to get upset about.
and heard anything other than LOUD NOISES, you're a better man than me. We don't know what was said, other than "Piece of crap" seems awfully tame for that kind of reaction. AND there's no discussion of what might have been said throughout the game leading up to that point.
So yeah, let's not act like we know for sure what happened there, other than, "Jerk said stupid things and got a weak shove from a ballplayer with bad judgment."
Doesn't even matter.
He could have screamed "Ginger Kambucha!!" It's a word. A word is a word. I'm not going to debate you on the deep rooted feelings of this word - that is thrown about freely in closed circles, but is suddenly some sort of assualt-able offense if said by certain other circles - at the end of the day it's a word. You don't assault someone because of a word. It's stupid and you would actually be playing into their hand.
To take the word of a player that has had more than one issue with anger management and lashing out. Did you know Smart literally kicked a chair on the OSU bench about a month ago? Secondly, it is not acceptable to put your hands on someone because of a word or words! The fan is obviously an idiot, thats without question. It is not acceptable to escalate a situation from words to a physical confrontation.
And you can teach yours to swing on someone for calling him a name and have a chance of killing that person and going to prison for murder, forever.
You don't lay your hands on someone unless you are in physical danger. It's pretty simple, really. You raise an Oaf and he will be treated as such.
I think the big lesson here is never to escalate a situation from verbal to physical. Something about sticks and stones.
When you teach someone not to hurl insults because bad things will happen to you, it's true. You're inviting someone to retaliate.
It doesn't make it impossible to then say that you are in no circumstances ever allowed to punch a stranger for saying not nice things to you.
You're acting like those two things are mutually exclusive, and they're not.
wanders into a crime-ridden neighborhood, insults the residents and waves cash in the air several things may or may not happen.... should he get mugged it does not excuse the criminality of the mugger. On the other hand, the victim may have had a little something coming.
There is a big difference between saying "He got what was coming to him" and "Marcus Smart should have pushed him."
If Texas Tech super fan goes to games and says awful things to players, he deserves his comeuppance. It doesn't mean that I'm personally going to take a swing at the guy or think that it's okay to do so.
I'm in total agreement about getting physical to solve verbal situations. However, there are two sides to teaching that: if my child is the person being verbally abused, no--not a good idea, but I'd still have more understanding for unacceptable behavior in that situation. If he's the person being obnoxious and/or offensive, then yes--I'd tell him he has no reason to be upset, he had what was coming (and obviously he'll be getting a lot of trouble from me before we get to that point).
There's so much material there. The guy in the white polo shirt grinning. Statistician Beardo the Weirdo doing the same. The elderly guy sitting courtside daydreaming about The Lawrence Welk Show while his son gets all hot under the collar.
Also love that Fathead that was thrown from out of frame that didn't quite make it to Henderson, and the girl in blue's reaction to it. Grinning Security Guard obviously the best part, though.
That's pretty good too. The blonde in orange at the extreme right who thinks the fathead may have cooties. The brunette in orange behind the reactor gives Henderson the FU and then possibly gets shoved from the side. I want to know more.
Looks like a brah comes running down the seats to join in on swearing at Henderson. Or maybe it was his Fathead and he's coming to save it.
Love the fat old balding white-haired guy, looking Henderson right in the eye, slowly getting up, and probably going for his belt as if to say "We gonna settle this right now, son."
If you notice his slow stand-up is the reason the Henderson begins his back away
I have actually never seen that gif, it's hilarious.
I know I'm in the minority here, but I loved Henderson's antics last year, Sherman's trash talk, and that OSU guy flipping the double bird. This stuff just makes the games so much more fun.
If that's the smiling black dude, I swear to god he looks like he's in love with Henderson. I think he's visually undressing him. The ear to ear grin never leaves his face. Holla!
Good catch. That gif really gets better with each viewing.
but I mostly saw a bunch of meathead frat dudes hurling obscenities and inviting Henderson into the stands because apparently he was questioning their manhood or something silly. It was all kind of embarassing IMO.
Auburn is chock full of those guys. May as well just call them a bunch of Auburn fans as it gets the same point across.
Mario really got a six on the Wonderlic? Wow - we used to give that test to all prospective applicants and we wouldnt hire anybody under a 20 as people with a score lower than that were very hard to teach. A person with a score under 10 is considered to have extreme learning disabilities (Vince Young also got a six) so I cant even imagine how he got into Michigan must less how was he able to stay academically eligible.
He was steered into Sports Management or General Studies...
bad memories RE: sports management
...there's another typical job applicant test that Mario would have failed also.
To be fair, the Wonderlic isn't always something kids at the draft care much about. You hear stories about guys just walking away from the test after 10 minutes because nobody really cares when you run x time and bench y number of reps. Also, and I have no proof to back this up for Mario, but sometimes guys have various learning/test taking issues that manifest with these exams but aren't a proper barometer of intelligence. That's why I always hate when these scores are leaked; it's at best useless information, and usually is only used to embarrass a kid or hurt his draft stock.
I think it was Caliborne out of LSU a couple years ago, he got like a 4 and got asked about it alter and flat our said he didn't give a damn about the test and didn't read a single question.
I see your point, but thing is, a lot of idiots wash out of the NFL because they have all the talent in the world but would rather go out and get drunk than spend an extra 10-20 hours a week watching film, then go on to get embarrassed by the likes of 5th-rounder Richard Sherman who DOES put in the film work.
And the Wonderlic is, nothing, nothing compared to the tedium of prepping for a game. It's one of the least reliable indicators for talent, duh, but that doesn't mean you can't glean anything from it.* It's not "at best usless information". You just don't want to read too much from it.
Which is where I take issue with the idea that intelligence is a "nice to have" at "skill positions" (the latter which always rankled for me because it's as if O-line and D-line aren't skill positions -- ANYWAYYY). I get what they mean, and if you read this you'll see I mostly agree, but the choice of words kind of downplays the importance. Intelligence is very important. The unfortunate fact, though, is that you can't let your assignment blow by you (conversely you can't let a DB pick your pocket if you're a WR), and the only guy with a hope of doing that is the one with the talent. So colleges and even the NFL will waste countless hours trying to coach brain-dead gazelles who consistently run themselves five yards out of position, because at least that has a sliver of a chance of success compared to giving Stephen Hawking a new pair of legs. But this has attrition rates they begrudgingly accept only because the physical demands are every bit as critical as Brian says. You absolutely need the physical talent, yeah, but the player still needs to be coachable.
*Sherman's Wonderlic: 24
I recognize the obvious importance of intelligence, but I do think the Wonderlic test does a pretty crappy job about figuring that out as it relates to the game of football. Dan Marino had a score of 15 I think and obviously that worked out, and 24 is a fine score for Sherman but certainly nothing spectacular (Tebow had a score of 22, and he could barely throw a forward pass at times).
One argument I'd make is that for someone to be successful enough in college to get noticed by the NFL, he probably is a reasonably intelligent at playing football. He may still be deficient in other areas of intellectual rankings, but I trust that guys who play in the NFL understand how to read defenses, respond to shifts, etc. pretty well or else they'd be off the field. So sure, a score of 6 is a warning sign, but I can imagine that lots of people score in the "meh" area and that doesn't really prove anything.
But again, when it comes to wideout or corner, they first gotta have speed. There's a reason why Kovacs went undrafted and it sure wasn't his brain. On the flip side, the NFL will take a chance at the dumbest corner if the draft if the guy can run a 4.3. The guy may wash out in a year for lack of willingness to study the game, but they'll take the chance every time. It's annoying, but I get it.
Mind you I ain't presenting Sherman's 24 as evidence he's smart, per se. But it's evidence he's not stupid (nor do I think Tebow is necessarily dumb -- his problem is that he's a mama's boy who lacks independent thought, but that's another conversation entirely).
To put it another way. . . it's possible for a smart guy to score a 6 on purpose, but it's less likely for the dumb guy to get a high score by accident. And while I'd expect the occasional free-thinker to boycott the test, I'd look closely at the guy who bothered to take it but didn't bother to prepare. NFL hours can get brutal yo. It's like, what am I gonna make of a guy who shows up for the interview having not even spent a half an hour checking out the company website? It may work out but I want to hear how from someone trying to convince me s/he's the best candidate for 240 hours/month and starts off by blowing off thirty minutes of proactive work. Because it's dumb bullshit? OK, if you can convince me, call me out and I'll actually accept that. Again, this stuff is a holy grail by no means. But often. . . it's because they're lazy.
My instinct before seeing the Wonderlic chart was that RBs are the most likely to be able to make an impact right away; glad to see the chart backs it up. There's just so little you can actually teach an RB by the time he gets to college.
Also there's just something that doesn't seem right about the smartest guys being the ones who smash their heads every play.
Well, technically the offensive and defensive linemen are involved in far more collisions during a game, yet they have the highest scores. I think RBs having lower scores is probably partially the type of athletes recruited there, a sprinkling of socioeconomic factors, and a healthy dollop of Idontgiveacrap-itude for guys whose main job is it to run away from large men trying to catch them.
OL/DL is what I was refering to. I think of myself as a smart person and as a rule I usually try to avoid hitting things with my head.
Yeah, nvm. Was reading the comment above his and combined the two for some dumb reason.
One important thing to remember about playing press coverage is that you need a pass rush to make it work.
MSU had Calhoun coming off the edge freaking people out.
We did not have that this past year. It's tough to maintain press coverage for more than 4-5 seconds (if that) so you need to know that you're not going to give the QB 6-7 seconds back there to pick you apart.
Frank Clark was the great hope for that this year. Other than glimpses we didn't see it. Hopefully it gets better next year.
Yes, the D-Line were the unsung heros of the Charles Woodson era. He was great, but they made him greater.
It worked in the other direction, too. We got our share of coverage sacks in '96 and '97.
MSU was tied in the mid-30's for sacks last year (actually an 8 team tie for 31-38), with 32 sacks. Which, not bad, but not elite.
In 2012 they were in the high 80's (a 7 team tie for 86-92), with 20 sacks. Which is terrible. Michigan actually finished ahed of them with 22. But that defense was still elite.
Sparty has incredibly aggressive LB's against the run, and their short-sitting safeties pick up the passing routes left by those LB's. They play pass-interference on the outside, counting on poor execution in the passing game at the college level and no calls from the refs. I think a misdirection running game and a continuously aggressive (double pump please!) passing game is the way to beat them. Receivers have to win and come down with the ball.
Sacks don't necessarily tell the full story on how effective a pass rush is. Even if you're not getting sacks, a pass rush can be successful if you're forcing the QB to throw early, throw the ball away and most importantly, making the QB uncomfortable sitting in the pocket.
If you didn't watch the Super Bowl and only looked at the box score, you'd see Seattle only sacked Manning once. However, if you watched the Super Bowl you'd realize that while Seattle only had one sack, their pass rush was incredibly effective and was one of the main reasons Manning had such a poor performance.
but you're not presenting any data that says Sparty had very good pressure. In 2012 they did not, as their DT's were terrible rushers and Gholston/Rush were mediocre. In 2013 they were better, but not elite (really just above average).
I think too many on this blog let the M game color their outlook. Remember everyone sacked us all the time. Sparty had a poor pass rush in 2012, and a mediocre one in 2013.
Since sacks aren't the end all be all of whether the defense is getting good pressure when the offense is trying to pass, what data would be good to confirm or refute whether a teams pass rush is getting pressure on a QB?
"First, there is no way that guy called Smart a 'piece of crap' unless it was part of a larger stream of profanity."
Why, because there's no way Smart would resort to violent action without being provoked by the guy? Please advise as to what unconscionable insult the chair hurled at him a few weeks ago.