mesmerism! presidential assassinations! circuses on fire!
Last year. #75 offense, #25 defense (both national rankings in terms of yds/game and excluding bowl peformance)
This year. #89 offense, #97 defense
Last year. 5 NFL Players -- #1 Overall draft pick Jake Long, senior, record-breaking, 4 years starter QB Henne, heisman candidate Mike Hart, one of the most talented receivers in UM history in Manningham and of course Arrington. Senior-laden team.
This year. 5 freshmen starters(Threet, Stonum, Odoms, Koger, McGuffie - prior to injury), wildly inexperienced offensive line. New coaches, new offensive system.
Sure, we were #25 on defense last year. How? I don't know. We gave up 32 to App. St, 39 to Oregon, 22 to EMU, 37 to Wisco, 32 to Florida (acceptable I suppose). We also had 2007 ND to pad our stats. We didn't exactly have the best defense. We were slow, got torched by every running QB, and suffered from general incompetence. If on the 1st or 2nd play of last season Stevie Brown takes a bad angle, misses a tackle and gives up a long touchdown then (armanti edwards to dexter jackson i think), how is Scott Shafer supposed to turn him into Ed Reed and our unit into some amazing defense?
Look at last year's offense. #75!! This with the aforementioned talent. As Brian said, this wasn't exactly the greatest show on turf.
Am I disappointed with this season? Incredibly. But we were at a peak last year in terms of the talent cycle with most of our key players being seniors and we weren't that good. Let's keep the talent and circumstance we currently have in perspective, and cut the coaches and players some slack please.
I'm not really sure what kind of people write on these boards, but as a UM student it is somewhat disappointing to see so many people getting on the players and coaches in such a disgusting way. Sure there is whining among the students but it seems to be a lot worse among the rest of the fan base.
True fans empathize with their teams, not cheer them during the good times and throw em under the bus in the bad times. If you had a child that does something stupid, you scold him. But if your child disappoints you in a deep way, you feel sadness, not a burning desire to beat the shit out of him. That's how I feel about Michigan football. So next time we lose, take a deep breath and have a drink. It will get better.