I don't see how playing a RS FR that is small and often fails to get proper leverage at LG is in any way, shape, or form a good move, even relative to the other possible options.
Coaches trying Magnuson out at LG
This response is not directed specifically at you (or at you at all, necessarily), but at the general level of "why would the coaches do this."
For the past 4 days, this blog's readership has been wailing for the coaches to show that they are capable of making changes when Plan A is not working. There have been .gifs of banging heads against the wall, calls for Borges to be fired for being stubborn and a general view that the coaches are unwilling to do anything but stay the course.
Here's the thing: our current OL (the line as a unit, not the individual players, necessarily, as many are just young and inexperienced) SUCKS! It is killing our offense. Devin is getting very little time to operate, and the RBs are getting caught before they have time to take a step. It is a real problem and despite many on this blog (again, not you, as I think that you are probably one of the more knowledgeable people around these parts) thinking that they have the solution, it is not easy to work around.
So now that Hoke / Borges look like they may be making a change, what does everyone do? Complain about the change. Let's go on the assumption that Hoke / Borges realize that the current 5 are killing us and realize that it almost cannot get any worse. If we don't like this change, is there a better one?
Well, you see, the coaches showing that they're trying some things to improve the team goes against the narrative so many have built up here. And why ruin a good narrative just as it's geting going?
The issue is that the coaches aren't actually trying something new.
Something new would be passing out of formations with 3-5 eligible receivers to set up the run by forcing the defense to unload the box.
Something new would be implementing packaged plays combining a run or a quick pass option into one play.
Something new would be substituting a traditional run game with underneath routes or screens to Norfleet/Fitz/whomever can make a guy miss.
Replacing one guy on a shaky O-line and running power into 9 guys still in the box is NOT something new.
Actually, this may well mean further offensive changes, because an undersized guy like Magnuson doesn't necessarily make sense at LG if we're intent on emphasizing the power run game.
At this point i dont see why not move Schofield back inside and if its Mags they like or Braden move them to RT.
Stop shuffling players so you can find "new" ways to run up the middle. RUN. NEW. PLAYS.
This, if there is any real credibility to it (lots of times they are maybe trying something a little bit, it leaks, people make a big deal of it, then it's absolutely nothing) then this is a panic move. My guess, there is very little actually to this and it's just a way to get more compitition and to give Magnuson some confidence that he has a chance to play.
I actually don't think the Offensive Line sucks. I think their performance sucks; however, I think they are incredibly talented (albet young). So, rather than shuffle around the line, which really just pinpoints blame to specific players for ineptitude, why not change the playbook? Why not make the job of the line simpler? Leverage the no-huddle to read the defense; provide check downs when obvious run plays have been sniffed out by the defense; etc.
I am not complaining simply to compain. I'm complaining because this wreaks of a panic move, and I think other options should be considered (i.e. no huddle; check downs; simpler offense that isolates our game-changing players in one-on-one situations).
I actually agree with you that the individual players are very talented. That is why I said "our current OL (the line as a unit, not the individual players, necessarily, as many are just young and inexperienced) SUCKS."
As for this being a panic move, it probably is. But so what? There is good reason to panic.
Nowhere does it says Magnuson is being moved to guard. Or that he is going to start at guard this Saturday. It says he did a nice job as back-up tackle, and he's "in the mix" "getting reps" as guard as well. This is practice. This is how the youngsters grow, learn and get ready to be useful when needed. Practice is where the competition happens, if not the magic. And the game is where those who do well at practice are thrown into the fire to learn how to handle it. Some will learn eventually, some may not.
If he handles things better in practice than some others, then he might get thrown into the fire eventually, and of course we'll panic again if he doesn't solve the problems any more quickly than the other youngsters.
AL comes in,why want he just wake up and smell the roses??? If we try to run the ball against sparty when the load the box,HE MUST BE FIRED,SIMPLE AS THAT.
The real problem is, in seriousness, when was the last time you saw a quick slant or bubble screen off of those ridiculously stacked boxes? At some point you have to stop changing personnel and change scheme a bit.
Seriously. It's the gameplan. Clear and simple. So sick of people pinning it on Miller, Fitz, DG, etc. The team may be young, but other teams do plenty more with a lot less. When Borges has a sensible gameplan and the offense still sucks, then you can throw some blame on the players. If Art Briles was in charge of this O, I bet we'd be crushing people. I'd say RR, but then we'd get into a whole nother discussion.
more spread formations.
yeah well have you seen our interior line play so far?
happened to Braden. He was working at LG during the Spring and Fall, is he hurt or just struggling in practice?
There was a lot of talk about him in the spring and summer.
I asked the same thing yesterday and still have not heard, Is Braden hurt? I almost hope so, because he was supposed to be a big part of next years line??? Since he didn't come in for Lewan it appears he is not the back up LT and he didn't come in at guard for Bryant he is not the backup G????????? Please provide us some hope and say he has a boo boo.
hes still the 4th tackle on the chart and he didnt work out well at guard when the tried him there in camp.
The pre-season hype and predictions for Braden have sure vanished. By my count this would be the 4th option at LG before any mention of Braden
It was determined that Braden cannot play guard, so the fact that they aren't bringing him in to play guard should have no effect on his expectations. He's the next OT after Magnuson, but we haven't needed a fourth OT at any point this year. It would be a surprise if Magnuson and Braden aren't the starting tackles next year.
I like Magnuson alot but I don't think he's the answer on the inside for the running game.
Since he is not the answer, is there a better option? If not, he may not be ideal, but he is the best answer we may have.
Abandoning the run completely is not an option. Switching offensive systems mid-season to one that the team has not practiced is not either. The playbook that the team has been working with calls for some element of up the center running. I don't see the downside of plugging in Magnuson to see if he can add some spark. I thought he played great against PSU.
Frankly, I don't really understand why we don't put him at RT and move Schofield to LG.
Frankly, I don't really understand why we don't put him at RT and move Schofield to LG.
Not an expert but I ponder this as well. There are probable reasons but after hearing/reading this I do wonder what the reasoning behind not doing the aforementioned.
I don't know what the better option is at this point. Bryant is struggling in pass protection and Magnuson can definitely help in that area but the trade off might be less push on running plays.
Well maybe that means they intend to throw it a lot more.
I would imagine so. At least throw more on first down to set up the run.
Nobody is asking them to abandon the run or change schemes mid season. They want Borges to stop tipping his hand on exactly where the run is going and to put options to audible out of runs against stacked defenses fronts especially when the DB are playing 10-15 yard off the receivers. It doesn't matter who you have on the line when what you are doing is so obvious the defense can sub in 4-5 DT's. You are not giving the O line a chance to succeed.
well if they work enough at it maybe Lewan will be the LG while Funches will be the LT... they both move their feet very well...
Have they considered putting Magnuson at tackle, where he seemed to do okay last weekend, and moving Schofield back to guard?
I was wondering the same thing but I guess that is too much youth on the right side.
Other than rewinding and avoiding the RichRod era, what do you suggest?
Relieve Darrell Funk of his duties immediately - Wisconsin did exactly that last year after two horrible games from their O-Line. Then turn to Borges and say "you're next" if he continues to run play after play into brick walls like he did last week.
Yes i know it wont happen.
Yes I know that Hoke might actually be the brick wall culprit. But if we did those things it would tell me he isn't. As of now I'm about 50-50 on if it's Borges, Hoke or both on the insane playcalling.
While I don't mean to direct this at you personally, this got me thinking: is it fair to evaluate Borges' offenses with personnel he didn't recruit?
Of course, I don't think he's directly involved in recruiting, but I mean Hoke & Co. are clearly targeting specific players for Borges's system and they're currently freshman and sophomores with excellent talent coming in for 2014 and 2015 thus far. There are headscratching and very frustrating moments no doubt, but I feel it may be a bit shortsighted to heavily emphasize two games (albeit important ones) from one season in determining whether or not he will remain here.
I think the Wisconsin situation is not really analagous. They fired they're brand new coach who had installed a new technique. When they fired him, they went back to coaching the old technique that the players had a history of executing succesfully.
All of the upvotes.
We could clone Lewan and put him at every position, but if you have 6 guys blocking 8 defenders, you're still going to lose that battle every time.
I have seen Lewan block 2 guys at the same time. ..
I am so pissed I purchased tickets for this Saturday a month ago rather than outside the stadium for $5/per.
Fuck me and my stupid risk avoidance mentality. I hate all things.
If the Tigers lose tonight I am going to hate all things so hard, man.
to live. You need to change your life's coaching staff, or at least your happiness coordinator.
I feel your pain. I am scared to look at Stubhub right now considering that I bought two on the fifty last week on Thursday for $"not cheap". Other side of the coin...maybe there are a lot of Indiana fans coming north smelling an upset. Plus long term forcast looks like rain. Nothing about this is enjoyable.
This reminds me of those puzzles kids do where you have blocks of different shapes that you are trying to fit through an opening - the cruel joke is the correct piece is missing and trying different pieces is an effort in futility.
We will run downhill on first and second down until it works! Manball!
Enough of the "Fire Borges" stupidity. Filing your OC mid-season is just silly. You do that when you have an offense full of 5* senior talent that is doing jack shit, and maybe not even then. We have an offense that is failing because our offensive line has three new starters, all of which are underclassmen, no depth at QB (which limits our ability to run Devin as much as we otherwise could), TEs that cannot block a small child, and a WR group that is made up of a 5'8" #1 receiver, a converted TE. a raw track star (Chesson) and a few role players.
Anyone who expected this offense to operate efficiently throughout the season was deluding themselves.
have we under-performed? Yes. Is some of that on Borges? Yes, as even my wife was screaming every time Devin handed it off to Fitz for a loss. But, is that reason to fire Borges when we are 5-1? No, seems a bit reactionary and silly to me.
Do you really want that? Seriously?
His lines are good pass blockers but horrible run blockers
Sorry man. Fire Borges.
Give me an offense that provides >30 points a game and we'll be okay.
Overreaction meme on "Fire Borges" is overreactive.
Inflating your PPG on cupcakes doesn't make you a good coordinator, especially when you score less than that by far in big games and the user makes a statement that also doesn't account for short fields or defensive TDs.
Like that ND cupcake thAt beat Sparty? Same one?
I'm sure you are being a bit exaggerative, but I certainly don't need to wait a few more years for our 5* talent to be seniors before casting a judgment on Borge's abilities. Also, I don't propose we fire Borges mid-season; that would insight a tire fire. Nevertheless, if he continues to roll out the same game plan week-after-week that abandons things we are good at and - in their place - does the same thing repeatedly that we suck at, then - yes - I think he should be gone.
michgoblue is secretly a coach on M 's staff, because if you actually watch the games and think Borges isn't the main culprit, you are batshit crazy.
HEY, THATS NOT TRUE!! IT WORKED TEXAS' DEFENSE!
So who will be the new Magnuson in plays with an extra OT?
Hoke reinstates Hagerup to left tackle and slides Lewan to slot receiver. Stonum figures out how to have more eligibility, transfers back to Ann Arbor, dons the #1 jersey and plays center.
Then we run power with Fitz 841 times for 13 yards.
Um vs Indiana is on Big Ten Replay right now. That offense is a 180 from what i watched saturday
Shuffling the OL won't do much if you're running at 8 defenders with 6 blockers.
Not that Magnuson at LG will do anything to help, but if you read the 27 for 27 piece, it's pretty clear OL is just as big of a problem as play calling. (IMO bigger, I disagree with some of Brian's conclusions, but anyway).
What did Matthew McConaughey do when he had to rebuild his O-line in that movie? Oh yeah!, keep away from power O....
new stuff to try and find the right combo but it sure doesn't bode well for the rest of the season. It's either injuries or they are throwing everything at the wall to see what sticks. Given the current state of affairs I'm OK with the latter.
Get the Tums ready for Saturday, potential position-switch starters might have you generating more stomach acid than you are used to.
This feels a lot like insert a random dude at safety/LB/DL. Rinse. Repeat. During the RR years.
None of it worked back then and it probably won't work now. However, I'm glad the effort is being made, then and now, to fix the problems. Nothing worse than repeatedly doing something that has been proven to not work. 30 for 28, Never Forget
Let Jim Leyland set the lineup!
I know the OL is a mess, but if Manguson starts at LG next week it's almost to the point where Michigan's making too many OL changes.
Why don't we just move Magnuson to 3rd Left tackle next to Schofield and Lewan? Then we won't need a left guard.
+1 to you sir.
Has anybody else noticed that Kalis seems to be at the root of a great majority of missed assignments and getting blown back 3-4 yards off the LOS??? Neither he or Bryant seem capable guards...I am offering no solution just wondering If anybody else is seeing this as I was pretty excited for him at RG at the start of the season. Is Funk not able to coach these guys???
In the event you do not want to open a new tab, here's the embed of the presser:
Hoke can get this line to at least be solid by the end of the year. This is so frustrating.
Kalis was a 5-star OL recruit for crying out loud. A big, nasty one too. Now we're substituting him with huge Magnusson, a high 4 star. Both are young players, but highly talented (according to recruiting publications).
Meanwhile, widdle Wisconsin is bulldozing the conference and the nation with their rushing offense (1st in BIG10, ranked 5th nationally), with a bunch of no name, no accolade OL players:
LT Tyler Marz NR, 2-star
LG Ryan Groy NR 0-star
C Dallas Lewallen NR 0-star
RG Kyle Costigan NR 0-star
RG Rob Haverstein #42 OT, 3-star
Oh, and they run manball.
Something is rotten in the state of Denmark you guys.
This. At what point does Al stop indirectly blaming his players by talking about positions in pencil, open competitions,and trying out new players, and start realizing HE is the mother freaking problem? That either his schemes or his coaching or both are what is befalling this offense? Funk too?
If you recall Wisky had a terrible offensive line just two years ago.
With the exception of Marz (who is a Redshirt Sophomore) the rest are Redshirt Juniors with a Senior Mixed in there...
Marz (Redshirt Sophomore)
Ryan Groy (Redshirt Senior)
Dallas Lewallen (Redshirt Junior)
Kyle Costigan (Redshirt Junior)
Havenstein (Redshirt Junior)
It's like comparing apples and grapefruits in terms of experience on the interior of the lines. The idea that Funk should be getting > production out of some combination of Kalis, Glasgow, Bryant, Miller and now Magnusson versus that level of experience is ludicrous.
Crappy analysis and comparables are crappy.
And yet, if lack of experience is so indicative of potential O line performance, how come Al doesn't adjust away from schemes that place emphasis on the entire line and TEs working in cohesion to man ball as opposed to moving the offense into more space? Either because you're wrong, or because Al's an idiot. Either way, crappy offensive coordinator is crappy. Fire Borges.
That is why he has been a BCS coordinator multiple times. Coaches just love to hire idiots.
His offense has scored over 30 pts 4 times this year and that would have been higher if not for Gardner playing Football Santa.
"How come Al doesn't adjust away from schemes that place emphasis on the entire line and TE's working in cohesion to man ball as opposed to moving the offensed into more space?"
I'm comfortable I'm not wrong; I suspect Borges is not an idiot. I do think he's stubborn as a mule which is the root of this argument.
You take four and five star players and give them experience, time in the weight room, experience with multiple scheme and you can screw around with your offense all you want from Manball to zone to obscure TE tackle sets. Borges doesn't have this level of Offensive Line competency yet but he calls it like he does.
To summarize, I'm not wrong (the offensive line will be a bitch in about two years and perhaps one) but Borges is stubborn like crazy. I don't know that firing him is going to be an option, anyway, given Hoke's stubborn loyalty streak.
Havenstein RT and Groy C were starters last year for Wisconsin last year. The other three (Marz, Lewallen, Costigan) were not even on Wisconsin's two deep in 2012, though Costigan got a hard look.
My point is that both Wisconsin and Michigan had questions coming into 2013 about their OL. Both had a couple nice returning starters, and after that a lack of game time experience.
Wisconsin's OL talent isn't comparable to what Michigan has collected in terms of documented, camp-evaluated, nationally-scouted talent. Wisconsin's best offensive lineman was offered only by Wisconsin. Experience matters, but Wisconsin is in the same boat as Michigan in this regard. What really matters is player development.
Right now it is Wisconsin, not Michigan, with their pathetic 51st, 33rd, 38th, 69th and 37th ranked recruiting classes, who is kicking the shit out of opposing defenses right now with the No. 5 ranked rushing offense, a brand new head coach who nobody in the state H.S. system knows, and a brand new offensive line coach, who nobody knows either.
Yet when they fired the coordinator things turned around for said crappy line midseason. Fire Funk. Fire Borges.
OL coach, not the coordinator midseason. And that was 2012, not 2011.
Who also happened to be a new staff member who was working with experienced o
Your idea of firing both the OL and OC has to rank among the dumbest ideas ever written on MGOBLOG. So who coaches the offense and offensive line? Fred Jackson? Brady Hoke?Bringing back Jerry Hanlon?
You need to step away from the computer because your posts are completely irrational. If any changes are to be made they should be after the season. Firing people now is th act of a panicking fool. It won't resolve the issues(who coaches) at all.
if it meant a 11-3 record, 5.4 YPC, a almost 2000 yard back with 33 touchdowns, a 3000 yard passer with 39 total TDs and 44 ppg.
UM is transitioning to a new blocking scheme,. Wisconsin was running the same one they had when Moss and Fletcher burst on the scene in the early-90's. Continuity makes a big difference.
sides. I can see why people are bitching at Borges/Funk for being in year 3 and still seeming to be inflexible when it comes to playcalling and not being able to have a line be better than most MAC schools put out.
I also have a feeling that Hoke might be hamstringing Borges and he is obviously dealing with young, inexperienced players even if they are talented.
I'm at the wait and see point at the moment. Firing your OC midseason without a slam dunk replacement is begging for trouble. Firing a position coach who is underperforming isn't as big a shakeup, but again, who do you get to be OL coach? I'll save judgement until after the season, but I hope that if things stay the way they are at the moment, Hoke can put aside his loyalty and do what is best for Michigan football.
They have class after class of kids recruitied to play a specific scheme. UM is just now starting kids recruited to play Hokeball.
How dare you voice oppostion to the groupthink that kids will play well with more experience, coaching, time in the weight room and scheme familiarity vs. kids who have at least two years less experience but had five stars from Rivals.
The Michigan O-Line is going to be a bitch for other teams to deal with in about two years (possibly one given the youth coming in and getting time this year) but to expect pedigree to carry the day is ridiculous.
Redshirts across the board there as well.
If Michigan is not Wisconsin, and we have very little probability of developing into a Wisconsin over the next 6 games, and whenever Michigan pretends to be Wisconsin on offense, it gets knocked back for no gain or TFLs in embarrassing fashion, is it a bad idea to change strategy?
I can read UM's roster and the experience gap easy enough (3 seniors 1 sophomore, and a crapton of freshmen). The UM coaches must be convinced that OL experience doesn't matter much in terms of the head ramming approach.
Isn't Kalis a RG?
Even if this move turns into a "Meh" move this weekend, it's still against an Indiana defense. I'm still scared of facing a legit defense.
Did anyone else think Joey B made some nice blocks on Saturday? We had two runs in a row with positive yardage that were due to his blocks alone. Although hard to believe we had two runs of positive yardage at all, I thought he looked good.
Would love others to either confirm or shoot down my wishful thinking.
classmates. Unfortunately, his team did not win the game. We do have a nice participation trophy for your mantel . . .
Good, we can all stop panicking now. We should totally roll through the rest of the season. Gotta commend the coaches for taking a good, long look in the mirror and realizing that Saturdays debacle was solely the fault of our left guard. It's not easy to make big changes like this, so these guys clearly deserve our respect
I don't really understand your point. If the OL continues to play poorly it won't matter what the scheme is. To fix a problem you have to start at its core and in this case the OL is the core of the problem.
And yet, when we weren't running manball into stacked boxes, we were generating yards, passing and on the ground
having to constantly swap OLiners, it deflates confidence and can ruin a guys future with a poor performance. I still wonder if its more of a design of the play failing and a qb who doesn't step up that's the problem. I also feel Fitz isn't the best option we have but Hoke seems overly obsessed with seniors on the field.
You aren't alone
Please explain because I haven't seen anything from Green or Smith that tells me they are even equal options.
green and smith at all? 1 car 3 yds last game from green and nothing from smith. they have to get game time to compare.
when he runs, guess they only block for him?
technique. What happened to evaluating talent? How can we be in the middle of the season and still not have a strong grasp of who the best interior linemen are on the team? That is not result of athletes' inexperience, that is simply poor performance evaluation and talent assessment by the coaches.
I know this is hard to believe, but many players are not instantly good. They have to work at it.
recruits on the depth chart -- none of whom are true freshmen -- and the worst rushing performance in the post WWII era of Michigan football. Let's keep whipping the horses until they pull harder.
I know this is hard to believe, but the offensive line hasn't performed horribly when the play calling makes even a little sense.
is this just another example of the coaches trying to shoehorn guys in to positions they dont normally play?
Isn't that pretty obvious? They don't have much choice.
So now we won't run into a 9 person wall!
I read this and assumed Kalis would be going to RG if they do throw in Mag at LG. Am I wrong? Was there more about that said he'd be out or was that just others assumptions?
Isn't he already at RG? I am pretty sure...
is irritating. The problem is not the players, IMO, it's play calling and technique. It's coaching. It's like saying Fitz sucks. But does he really? There are no holes to run through!
I think fitz is the best back on the team this year. Hopefully by his senior year green has passed what fitz provides now but right now I think fitz is better. When your first cut in three yards behind the line of scrimmage because the offensive line has been shredded , what are you going to do?
Fitz in fall camp saying how well he was playing? What changed? Did Fitz forget everything in 6 weeks? It's coaching.
seems like he lost a step each week, don't Blake him he's fresh off a broken leg but I was hoping for a 2 back system and eventually lead back not this one mediocre at best lately back system.
It's Aaron Wellman's fault. He doesn't work the guys hard enough. They can't get ant push up front and are constantly getting blown 2 yards back into the LOS
So as long as we are placing blame on everyone I'll pick Wellman.
Yes. We need Barwis back. All these pro athletes go there for a reason. Mike Martin said it best, mike put him in the best shape of his life.
Having Mags play Tackle. Line Lewan and Schofield up next to each other, which was really working on a few runs a couple games ago. Magnuson showed he can play tackle well. Rather than ask the young guy to play inside, make Lewan or Schofield switch. And give us somebody to run behind.
Mags would basically be playing left tackle. Athleticism and footwork are at a premium blocking the backside, and if he shows he can hold down the blindside, then play action becomes a realistic possibility. Plus game experience playing next to Lewan could jump start a move to left tackle next year.
This poor play is clearly an attempt to keep Shane's redshirt.
We're on game seven and it still seems too akin to pressers from the Spring...
Idk guys. What I do know is I constantly think of how morbid this OL is and realize there's two future NFL draft picks on the bookends of the unit.
Next year's line will struggle even more if this season's line does not meet cohesion.
This year is it.
"Please try and stick."
I haven't focused on Funk's background and credentials until now but after doing a very quck search I wonder if he is really the guy to coach a power running O line. He's only been coaching FBS O-lines since '04 and hasn't spent more than 3 years at any school. This indicates to me that he's never really had to recruit and develop a line.
|2009-10||San Diego State||Offensive Line|
|2008||Ball State||Offensive Line|
|2004-07||Colorado State||Offensive Line|
|2003||Colorado State||Special Teams, Tight Ends|
|2002||Northern Illinois||Tight Ends|
|2000-01||Rhode Island||Def. Coordinator|
|1998-99||Rhode Island||Offensive Line|
|1995-97||Mesa State College||Off. Coordinator/OL|
|1993-94||Mesa State College||Offensive Line|
|1991-92||Muskingum College||Def. Coordinator/DL|
|1990||Muskingum College||Defensive Line|
|1987||Colorado State||Student Assistant|
Below is a highlight from his official bio on MGOBLUE.com where there is no mention of the running game, only number of sacks allowed.
"In 2010, Funk's line at San Diego State finished sixth in fewest sacks allowed, while Ball State ranked 10th in 2008. Funk helped the Aztecs finish the 2010 season ranked 12th nationally in passing offense, averaging just over 295 yards per game, and 16th in total offense (456.69 ypg). "
I couldn't find any reference to Colorado St. lineman being drafted or all conference-not saying there weren't any, I just didn't find anything. In his only year at Ball State there were 3 all conference linemen, one of whom (Robert Brewster) was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2009 draft but is no longer in the NFL and there are no OL from San Diego St. in the NFL.
Based purely on the resume is there any reason to believe that Funk is the right guy to be a long term line coach for a MANBALL offense?