At press time, Harbaugh had sent Michigan’s athletic department an envelope containing a heavily annotated seating chart, a list of the 63,000 seat views he had found unsatisfactory, and a glowing 70-page report on section 25, row 12, seat 9, which he claimed is “exactly what the great sport of football is all about.”
Upon Further Review: Defense vs. Indiana
Okay. So a part of this process involves saving out a spreadsheet as a text file. I name these totally obvious things like "ufr-iowa-2006-d.csv." I named this file "ufr-osu-2006-d.csv." When I typed the title of this post I typed "Upon Further Review: OSU versus OSU."
Yeah... about that.
Highlights from Dangerous Logic!
|Um, okay. Leon Hall(+2) is in better position than the receiver on this deep ball. (Cover +2)|
|O31||2||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Pass||Inc||WR Screen?|
|Playaction fake off tackle is followed by... well, I'm not exactly sure what. Lewis rolls out left a bit but the receivers to that side seem more interested in blocking than looking for a pass. Busted play. Lewis throws it away. Good pressure on the outside by Biggs(+1). (Pressure +1)|
|Crable(+1) comes around the outside, forcing Lewis to scramble. Branch(+1) is on a screen/QB spy assignment, sees Lewis flush, and attacks for the sack. (Pressure +1)|
|Drive Notes: Punt, 7-0, 9 min 1st Q. Probably see a fair amount of this Branch thing against Smith.|
|Branch-spy again is our rock to their scissors, as the OL is supposed to ride him out of the play, only there is no riding to be done as he stops dead. Woodley(+1) is allowed into the backfield but is too quick and disrupts the play a little bit, allowing Branch(+1) to finish at the LOS.|
|Way behind his intended receiver; if on target Chris Graham was going to fricking kill him. Or whiff hilariously. Either one. (Cover +1)|
|Nice pass and catch. Unfortunately for the Hoosiers, two yards OOB. Receiver ends up bracketed by Trent(+1) and Adams (+1, cover +1); if Lewis held onto the ball for one additional second he was going to get sacked by Jamison(+1, pressure +1)|
|Drive Notes: Punt, 14-0, 3 min 1st Q.|
|O27||1||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Pass||5||Slip screen|
|Harris(+1) tasked with the slot reciever... moves upfield first (blitzing?) before reading the play and tracking down the WR. Impressive reaction. Harrison(+1) also did a nice job to get to the outside of his man, forcing the play back to Harris.|
|O32||2||5||3-3-5 Nickel||Run||8||QB Draw|
|Ugly whiff by Graham(-1) turns a small gain into a first down. Get well, Prescott.|
|Hall's going to be there, but only to make a damage-limiting tackle. Lewis' throw is low and off. Still catchable, but is not. (Cover -1)|
|O40||2||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Run||9||Zone read|
|Simple handoff to Thigpen gets a chunk of yards... we're stunting on the left side of the line and they run right at it. No contain there, obviously, as Crable's pass rushing. He misses a tackle(-1) opening up a lane. Adams(-1) misses another tackle; Trent ends the play with a solid one.|
|Weird... third and one and still no Taylor. We line up with four down linemen, but Woodley is a DT and Crable a DE. We still stuff the POA fiercely; Sears (Josiah Sears) manages to lean for the first down. No complaints about the D here.|
|50||1||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Pass||11||Scramble drill|
|I can see Troy Smith doing this a few times against us. We get an unblocked blitzer off the corner; Lewis steps up. Another rusher comes at him up the middle; Lewis rolls out. Woodley and Crable track him down to the outside; Lewis finds a guy and rifles a pass to him. A first down created by Lewis alone; not much you can do here. (Pressure +1)|
|Lewis not so fortunate this time. Crable(+1) knifes through two blockers, flushing him. Branch â€“ still spying â€“ cuts him off to the outside, allowing a pursuing Jamison(+1) to recover and sack. (Pressure +1)|
|M40||2||11||3-3-5 Nickel||Run||9||QB Draw|
|Sigh. Harris(-1) misses this tackle (apparently he's not infallible), opening up a bunch of yards, especially since we're blitzing from the outside. Van Alstyne in on this snap. Also, here starts the incredibly long Dick Enberg interview with no explanation from anyone as to why the game stopped. I assumed the next play I would see would be a third and goal from the five for Indiana. Helpless... rage...|
|Lewis' pass badly underthrown, actually hitting Adams in the back. Trent(+1) had outstanding coverage anyway. (cover +1)|
|Hall's jump is a moment late, allowing this completion. A half-second earlier and this is a PBU.|
|M23||1||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Run||1||Zone read|
|Graham manages to finish since he's unblocked. Think a charging Crable(+1) forced a cutback away from the play design and thus the unblocked linebackers.|
|Well overthrown. Harris(+1) in outstanding coverage. (cover +1, pressure -1)|
|Woodley(+1) dominates the RT and gets instant pressure; Lewis responds by rifling a pass way over the head of his receiver. Almost picked off by a safety. (Pressure +1)|
|Drive Notes: FG, 14-3, 11 min 2nd Q. Not that upset about this drive. A couple missed tackles are irritating but a lot of pressure and three of the first downs were either ORTP, an excellent play from Lewis, or a screwup from Graham.|
|David Harris(+1) obliterates this. I am increasingly incensed he isn't a Butkus finalist.|
|We blitz directly into this. Harris(+1) nearly overruns the play but manages to recover and tackle at the LOS.|
|Graham comes on a stunting blitz as Woodley drops off into a zone. Graham(+1) gets pressure, forcing a hopeful jump ball. Hall(+1) is in position, getting the PBU. (cover +1, pressure +1)|
|Drive Notes: Punt, 21-3, 8 min 2nd Q.|
|Perhaps the only consistent irritations on the day were these dumb little hitch routes we never seemed to cover. Hall's run off by a deeper route and can't recover in time to do anything but tackle, with the help of Harrison. (Cover -1)|
|See? Aarrrrrgh! (cover -1)|
|O45||1||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Pass||Inc||Hopeful Jump Ball|
|Lewis flushed and escapes contain. Finds a receiver running down the sideline with Englemon and nearly completes a pass. Two problems: receiver landed OOB and Englemon had forced him to step OOB before he came down with the pass. Good coverage. (Englemon +1, cover +1, pressure came off major blitz and let Kellen Lewis out of contain so no +)|
|Terrible PI call no matter what Bill Curry thinks. We blitz again, leaving Mundy man up against Hardy. Lewis, rattled, throws the ball well inside and Mundy, running stride for stride with Hardy, is flagged for being corporeal and not allowing Hardy to pass right through him on his way to the ball. Also, Goddammit Bill Curry can you for once in your life criticize something other than politically correct coaching points?|
|M40||1||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Pass||5||Jailbreak screen|
|Good job by Graham(+1) to fight through a block and make a tackle; Will Johnson's pursuit also helpful.|
|Hall right there but not close enough to do anything but tackle (cover -1). Curry goes off on some rambling tangent about cliches being cliches because they're true then never mentions a cliche. I miss Chris Spielman. Seriously, Chris Spielman is about a billion times better than Curry.|
|M29||1||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Run||13||QB Draw|
|Graham reacts to this very, very late, then sort of falls at Lewis' feet as he dashes by(-2). Yuck. He has to get better next year.|
|M16||1||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Pass||Inc||Hopeful Jump Ball|
|Hall(+1) on Hardy in the corner of the endzone. Great coverage, great play on the ball, PBU. (cover +1)|
|Wildly overthrown by Lewis. Free INT for Trent(+1).|
|Drive Notes: Int, 21-3, EOH.|
|RB forced outside the tackles â€“ good job by Taylor(+1) on what may be his first snap â€“ and run down by Woodley(+1).|
|Woodley dropping off into a zone again. After the play Hall's a little disgusted and motions to the neophyte DB, indicating he needs to get wider. (Cover -1)|
|Taylor(+2) loves to time snap counts, which is why I think he's the only Wolverine to have gone offsides all year. This time he gets it right, crashing into the backfield, disrupting the play, and drawing a holding call. Michigan takes the call on the assumption IU will go for it. Smart move.|
|Indiana goes empty; this time Michigan sends the house. There are more blitzers than blockers and those blocking are overwhelmed. A tide of humanity meets at Lewis. Uh... +1 Harris and Biggs. Note: Brandon Graham in at DT.|
|Drive Notes: Punt, 21-3, 12 min 3rd Q. Breaston houses the return.|
|Taylor(+1) gets into Thigpen's feet, occupying a couple blockers and allowing Harris(+1) to blow the ballcarrier backwards five yards. HULK SMASH.|
|The mirror image of the last play, faking the offtackle right and countering left. Harris(+1) is neither fooled nor blocked and flows and destroys. Crable(+1) also plays this well.|
|O13||3||9||3-3-5 Nickel||Run||1||Bubble screen|
|Well played by Graham(+1). Gilmore is forced to pivot and reverse his field. By the time he does that the cavalry has arrived.|
|Drive Notes: Punt, 9 min 3rd Q.|
|Taylor(+1) and Johnson(+1) remove all traces of room in the middle.|
|Pretty decent coverage by Harris(+1) and Crable(+1) closes the receiver down immediately. (Cover +1)|
|Lewis gets outside the pocket... Will Johnson is the guy who gets out there. He's not quite fast enough.|
|Huge pass drop from Lewis... Harris(+1) reads, runs through a block and tacles at the sideline. Great play.|
|Jamison(+1) stunts around and snows Lewis under. (pressure +1)|
|Mutter mutter mutter. Barringer(-1) is slow reacting and whiffs a tackle that would have held this a yard or two short of the sticks. Don't mind the coverage, since if properly played it equals punt.|
|O41||1||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Run||2||QB Draw|
|Nice play by B. Graham(+1 â€“ this is going to be a pain next year when both are starters) to hold up at the POA come off, and tackle. He's going to be a player, whether it's at DT or DE. Don't think he's big enough to be a run down DT, at least not yet. His lack of a redshirt is a good decision... he's gotten a lot of useful snaps.|
|Miscommunication between players means wildly misthrown ball. Barringer breaks, but drops it.|
|Right: just like their last conversion except we substitute Hall(+1) for Barringer. Tackle made before the sticks. Punty time.|
|Drive Notes: Punt, 34-3, 1 min 3rd Q.|
|Pressure comes, though it's late. (Cover +1). Lewis is flushed and throws it OOB.|
|M37||2||10||3-3-5 Nickel||Run||5||Off tackle|
|C. Graham is unblocked on a blitz; he overruns the play, missing the tackle(-1). Brandon Harrison(-1) comes up too far inside, allowing the RB the corner. Should have been a loss of 4 or 5.|
|Throw is high and off the hands of Bailey; Hall in fairly tight coverage.|
|Graham beaten to the inside by his guy; pass is there; bobbled; Graham recovers to prevent the catch.|
|Drive Notes: Turnover On Downs, 34-3, 12 min 4th Q. Chris Richards is in on the next drive. No offense, Chris, but that == no more charting.|
(Also: Will Johnson's sack.)
OSU OSU OSU.
Things of slight relevance reveal themselves:
- We would much like Burgess back please. Graham made a few plays but also missed more tackles than Burgess has all year. Report is that he was left out as a precaution and will be fine for OSU. Hopefully that's true or we can expect a couple extra Troy Smith first downs via land.
- Expect a lot of 3-3-5 against the Buckeye spread, a lot of instances where six guys threaten at the line and then random players back off at the snap, including Jamison and Woodley.
- We'll probably use this DT spy thing quite a bit to capture a flushing Smith and shut down screens and the like.
- Terrance Taylor might not get much run unless the Bucks line up in some more conventional sets, which would be a shame. But English clearly has a preference for this 3-3-5 when he feels the run is not a big threat. We'll see.
|Woodley||3||3||Few decent plays in limited opportunities, but not a huge impact.|
|Taylor||5||5||Hardly played but made instant impact when he did, though that snap-timing thing has backfired more often than not this year.|
|Branch||2||2||Lifted midway through the second, I think, with an ankle ding.|
|Jamison||3||-||3||Could be key versus OSU.|
|Harris||9||1||8||I'm seriously. Never comes off the field, missed like his second or third tackle of the year against IU. A blitzer, a run-stuffer, a goddamn linebacking ninja.|
|C. Graham||3||4||-1||Get well soon, Prescott.|
|Hall||5||5||Maybe I could have dinged him for a couple of those stupid hitch routes, but it's not like he was ever badly out of position.|
|Trent||3||-||3||Not tested except deep, really. INT was a gift.|
|"Pressure"||8||1||7||Again very good though depressed by many short drops.|
|"Coverage"||10||5||5||Almost perfect except for -- yup -- stupid hitches.|
Story here is the linebackers: Harris was outstanding; Graham a major dropoff from Burgess. (This is better than last year, when bench scrubs who replaced starters maddeningly outplayed the starters.)
What about this rumoured "vulnerable secondary"?
Uh... okay. Michigan's now up to 11th in pass defense efficiency after the IU game. This is vulnerability? Yeah, I guess Brandon Harrison is short and misses more tackles than I'd like but an Ohio State gameplan that revolves around OSU's third WR would be AOK with any Michigan fan you choose to query. Leon Hall is going to be a top ten pick in the NFL draft; Kiper ranks Jamar Adams as one of his top five junior safeties, and, uh, Morgan Trent has been a little iffy on short routes but nigh unbeatable deep, whack pass interference calls excepted. Free safety has been kind of dodgy, I guess, and a number of Michigan's interceptions have been fortunate, but Michigan's secondary is only vulnerable relative to its run defense.
That said, every secondary is vulnerable to a quarterback throwing accurately and on time. More power to him if Smith can do that, but his window of opportunity will be a narrow one if the season to date is any indication.
Any concerns arise from this game?
Other than the obvious n eed to have Burgess back, no. Lewis got free a few times, but twice those were a direct result of Graham whiffs and sometime that's just going to happen versus a mobile quarterback. As Troy Smith previews go, it was reassuring. I would like to order a couple of those hilariously overthrown interceptions for Saturday.
No? Not so much?