Our lousy team actually played Utah better than Alabama did.
Golly gee willickers, Opy!
I don't know whether to feel better about that loss, or worse!
Yeah UM played UTah first game of the year. Utah got better as the season progressed. A LOT BETTER. UM got WORSE for all practical purposes. I would not have wanted to see end of year UM play end of year UTAH. UT would have wiped the field turf with MICHIGAN.
have these people thinking these teams should get their NC shot. Utah is good no doubt but I dont think they could hang with Oklahoma, USC, Texas or Florida. Maybe im wrong though.
Alabama played Florida pretty evenly.
that's sort of an unfair statement. They played Alabama equally or better than Florida did. It sucks that the system currently discriminates against teams like Utah. They can't do much else other than schedule big name nonconference teams.
This current system sends the message that there really isn't much room on the big stage for teams like Utah. What does this say to recruits? Why would I go to Utah over a bad team from a bcs Conf?
Alright, alright. I'm off my soap box...
ok, but do you feel better or worse about that loss?
Utah is an improved team from the starter, but dang. We actually played them kinda tuff. And, I wouldn't necessarily count out Utah against Flho or oklahomo. Utah's can play in bowl games.
Elno, I feel you a little. We actually were in a position to win that game. Considering how our year went, that in and of itself, is a stunning accomplishment. It was a game of firsts. For it to be Rich Rod's first game of his Michigan's tenure, the interception king and Steven Threet's first game playing college ball, the make shift, patchwork quilt offensive line playing together and the you tube's sensation Mcguffie first time in the big house. And oh yeah, It was Utah's first game of the season. Again I'll say considering how our year went, being in that game was a stunning accomplishment.
Hell, we had a chance to win that game. I still remember Threet's pass sailing over the out stretched arms of...oO(I think it was Matthews) into the waiting arms of a db with two or three minutes to go in the game. We played 'em tough. There is some solace in that. Very little, but hell, one ray of sunshine beats none.
That game also forecasted the disturbing trend for the year. Our defense gets overworked. Our offense gets out muscled, out classed and out played. Not to mention, turn overs. And oh yeah, our defense gets over worked.
We'd stay with teams for halves, (including tOSU and Penn State) or three quarters off of mostly a defensive effort. But then inevitibly we'll implode. So even though it was the first game. It played like every other game. And if it makes you happy to say that we put up more of a fight then Alabama...Then I'll let you have your day. Have at it.
Alabama was also without LT Andre Smith, who damn well might be the first overall pick in the upcoming NFL draft. That played a huge role in Utah's ability to generate a pass rush. 'Bama had to shuffle their entire O-line to make up for the loss of Smith.
how their defense managed to give up 21 unanswered points in the first quarter. The Smith thing is more of an excuse than an explanation in this game, IMO.
I disagree. The amount of pressure that Utah's front four generated against 'Bama was directly related to the best offensive lineman in college football not playing. As far as Utah jumping out to a 21-0 lead, yes, we saw that first hand against us back in September. There offense slowed down significantly in the second half of both games. I'm certainly not saying that 'Bama would've won had Andre Smith played, but, I don't think Utah would've had a 21-0 lead in the first quarter. I think its a safe assumption that Alabama probably would've put some points on the board if they didn't have to shuffle their offensive line to make up for the loss of Smith. Their entire offense was thrown off kilter because of it.
They did not have many highly regarded recruits on their team. Keep that in mind considering all the highly ranked stars on Alabama's team.
The truth is that our game against Utah was extremely fluky. It was not an evenly-played game. They outgained us by a wide margin (341-203), but pretty much all the breaks went our way. Our three TDs came 1) after they muffed a punt deep in their territory; 2) after we blocked a punt deep in their territory; and 3) after we recovered a fumble in their territory. Utah also committed 15 penalties for 137 yards (!). Basically, they did their best to lose that game and we still couldn't win it. Here's the boxscore:
Bama wasn't particularly good at rushing the passer or at pass coverage. I think Bama's leading sack man had 5? Bama also never had all that explosive of an offense all year, and without Smith playing the o-line looked confused and didn't know who to block half the time. I would have liked to see Utah play USC or OU, USC has the defense to shut down Utah's offense, and Utah wouldn't have been able to put a dent in OU's offense.
Still, huge credit to Utah's coaches for putting together a gameplan that made Saban look downright stupid, and the Utah players executed it to perfection.