A glimpse ahead to 2011
This would matter if we would have at least competed with those teams this year. We didn't compete at all. They flattened us. So we will go from flattened to competing, which let's call it 2-2 against those teams then. Throw in another loss against one of ND, San Diego State, Northwestern, or Illinois, and we're looking at a best case 9-3 next year, good for second or third in our Big Ten division and a mediocre bowl game.
Man it was so much sweeter when we were good.
EDIT: Wouldn't have been such a debbie downer if I realized I was the first comment. Sorry bro.
Wisconsin is the only team that flattened us this year. We lost by 10 to Iowa and outgained them by close to 200 yards.
UM was down 28-7 heading into the 4th quarter. They got flattened on the scoreboard the first 3 quarters.
A game is not 3 quarters, nor is a season one game.
But again, Michigan outgained Iowa by a bunch, but kept turning the ball over. There's a big difference between losing a game because you kept getting blown off the ball (Wisconsin) and losing a game because you couldn't hold onto the damn ball (Iowa, MSU).
Besides, if we're not counting all four quarters of some games, then can we just count the second half of yesterday's game? 'Cause by that standard, we won.
Michigan has been down by huge points to MSU, Iowa, PSU and Wisc. I don't need to hear the we made a combeback reply because any team is going to let up a little bit, a true comeback would mean we lost by only 3, which none of the games that happened. I completely agree with the first post.
Wisconsin is the only team that flattened us this year.
I guess it's in the eye of the beholder. MSU, Iowa, PSU and Wisconsin each led us by 20 or more points in the second half of those games. While we scored some TDs after that point in each of those games, we never had the ball with a chance to tie, and ended up losing all four by double-digits.
if your down by 7 in the fourth: you did not get flattened....
Call it whatever you want - a double-digit loss sucks, especially at home. I mean seriously . . . are we really going to find some kind of moral consolation in losing to MSU by 17, Iowa by 10, PSU by 10 and Wisconsin by 20? Incidentally, the two teams that "only" beat us by 10 have the same overall record as us.
If that is your case, then Iowa lost a lot of games last year, because they were always losing in the 4th.
don't play wisco next year, so there is that to look forward too.
Also, IF WE LOSE 3 GAMES NEXT YEAR THE BEST WE CAN DO IS 9-3!!!!!
If all the losses were out of conference. Or enough of them. :-)
Bowl victory, anyone?
BLAH BLAH BLAH M-16 BLAH BLAH
Fair enough, but in general I'm quite positive actually. Just on this board I feel a moral responsibility to bring people back to earth with their future expectations of this team. We're at least 2 years out from competing for a championship, clearly.
And as a side-note, what's with everyone using the "The Who Stay..." line to support the team now. "Those Who Stay" meant if you stay on the team, you will win a Big Ten championship. But those who stayed at Michigan this time never even competed for one. In fact, J. Boren left and won one. So actually, those who left are champions. Those who stayed lost a lotta games. Just a question I've had.
You really are dense, it doesnt have to exactly mean those who stay will be big ten champions. The kids who have stayed around this program for 4 years are going to be more successful in life having to endure the challenges that they've had. In my book every player that stays is a champion regardless of on field results.
You only say that when it's been more than 4 years without a title. Ideally, it means both.
It's always been my interpretation that "Those Who Stay Will Be Champions" refers to the Big Ten Chajmpionship (or more). Particularly when the quote came from Bo. I don't think that he's was talking about everybody getting a blue ribbon for competing like a T-Ball team. I think that he was talking about actual championships.
I live in Raleigh and NC State does "The Walk Of Champions" before every game. This always sort of bothered me since none of those players are champions of anything at this point. They haven't won the ACC since the 70's.
In my mind, "Champions" should mean something tangible.
If anyone on a blog like Dr. Saturday or EDSBS, or hell, even Brian's TWIS, is ever looking for a great example of the Michigan fanbase at its worst, this is it right here.
Except that pretty much every opposing fan I've run into thinks the RR experiment has been a disaster here and can't understand why there are still Michigan fans that support him, so I don't think they'd see a post like that as an example of the "worst" we have to offer.
As a Michigan fan, I know the program and the fans better than your opposing fans, whoever the hell they are. Their opinion of our program means jackshit to me since they have not been closely observant of our program. They watch ESPN and read Bleacher Report and see nothing but "Derp, Rich Fraud Fail, Derp," and say ,"Why, Derp, that sounds about right, Derp." So no, they wouldn't know what they're talking about, which means they probably wouldn't recognize that bit of emotastic self-destructive bitchery as the worst of Michigan fandom. Which it is.
1. UM will have the #1 offense in the big10 next year. book it. plus, TOs will be reduced.
2. the defense will be improved with more experience and more depth. obviously, this is the main key; how much improved. if martin and woolfolk can stay healthy, i say much improved; possibly close to avg in the big 10. plus TOs will be improved.
3. special teams will be better. again, more experience and more depth.
so with the #1 offense and an avg defense, this team can indeed compete for the big10 title; especially with OSU and Nebraska at home. if UM can steal a win at iowa or msu, the team could be in line to play in the big10 title game.
you can put me down for ND
Oh, wait. I see what you were responding to.
The B10 is going to get a lot tougher, man. No one is going to win at Bo's pace ever again. You are in for serious disappointment down the road, and may want to find a new hobby.
Jim Tressel's on the phone. He'd like to tell you why you're wrong.
Tressel has one of the best states in terms of football talent on lock, something we will never have. That is why, and it won't change.
Michigan never needed any state on "lock" to be successful in the past. They took highly regarded Ohio kids and turned that into conference title winning teams.
OU has been competing for Big 12 titles for the past 12 years or so - despite sharing the state with a pesky little brother and having a huge rivalry against Texas. There may be more talent in OK than MI, but their situation isn't that different than ours.
Bama is expected to be a perennial national title contender, despite also having a pesky little brother. Wiscy and Iowa, while not winning B10 titles like OSU did, have less in state talent than us to pick up and have been just as successful as we have over the past decade.
I'd be okay with 9-3 next year, but we hired Rich Rod because we wanted to win B10 titles at Bo's clip, and wanted to compete for national titles almost every November. He knows that's the expectation. And as someone who thinks we'd be foolish to let him go this off season, if we don't have a 10 win season after he's been here five years, he would not be meeting expectations.
lol off the top of my head Shawn Crable and Manningham were both from Ohio. That is an utterly false statement.
EDIT: Prescott Burgess, Brandon Harrison, Mesko, Roundtree, Koger, Omameh, are all Ohioans.
New players will step right in and the team wont even know there gone!.. exclude(clayborne, Dj, greg jones, tolzien, klug) One day we might have depth too!
I really hope you're right, but its hard to see it right now. My biggest reason for optimism is the return of the secondary, be it players returning from injury, or the freshmen gaining experience this year.
If you weren't a downer than it wouldn't be you. I know UM sucks and we are never coming out of it. Young team with everyone back should certainly only under perform again as that SOB RR is likely to be back next year. This is no thanks to that profit pusher DB. Maybe you make your comments in ALL CAPS to jazz it up a bit but same message.
I on the other hand am looking forward to a year where freshman aren't forced to start. In coming recruits can red shirt and only the truly exceptional will contribute. All this behind a prolific offense and maybe a kicker by then. One can hope.
That's good, I'm looking forward to next year too. But, let's be honest, we don't have a prolific offense. We put up crazy yardage because we're down 24 and the other team softens up, but the offense doesn't exist when the game is actually attainable.
As for freshmen not starting, next year it'll be the same excuse, just with sophomores. Notice how that has pervaded lately, the whole "Denard is only a sophomore" thing. It's true to an extent. But then again, there's gotta be someone who can play D on this team right?
As you said, one can hope. And c'mon man, I said I was just messin around in the other thread.
Somehow I don't think that these teams are trying to get lit up on defense in the second half. What is far more likely is that Denard, being a first year starter, still hasn't reached the point where he can settle in right from the opening kickoff. He is still working on developing his touch and mechanics, especially on the deeper throws, which leads to some missed opportunities, especially in the first half of games. There are usually not a lot of major adjustments on offense at halftime, but the execution seems to improve dramatcially.
What is encouraging is that Denard's athleticism opens up a lot of throws downfield, and next year he should be far more capable of hitting those open receivers consistently. When our offense has struggled it has been because of bad throws and drops. Looking at MSU alone, we left a ton of points on the field. There was the INT that should have been a TD, but for the bad throw. There was the overthrow of a wide open Stonum on a sure TD. There were numerous drops, and another INT in the red zone. On top of that, as Denard's downfield accuracy improves, it will be even harder to crowd the line to shut down the running game. That, in turn, will take pressure off of the defense as well.
In the MSU game, you can't count the Stonum overthrow as leaving points on the field because we scored a TD anyways just a few plays later.
Edit: Thinking of the wrong play. Oops.
Except you're wrong...
1st Half - Michigan vs Michigan State (17-10 MSU)
Michigan Yards: 263
Michigan State Yards: 246
1st Half - Michigan vs Iowa (21-7 Iowa)
Michigan Yards: 200
Iowa Yards: 188
1st Half - Michigan vs Penn State (28-10 Penn State)
Michigan Yards: 177
Penn State Yards: 246
1st Half - Michigan vs Wisconsin (24-0 Wisconsin)
Michigan Yards: 126
Wisconsin Yards: 364
We were totally outmanned against Wisconsin, sure. Penn State dominated the ball and we still almost put up 200 total yds in the 1st Half. We outgained Iowa and Little Bro.
This meme that the offense is only prolific because teams are playing vanilla D is entirely fabricated.
EDIT TO ADD: The yards info is gleamed for adding up drive chart totals for the 1st Half which means it is a summation of yards traveled. Adding/subtracting penalty totals may alter the numbers a tad, but the point remains.
That's all fine and dandy, but can we not dig 20-point holes for ourselves every time we play a decent opponent? The fact that this scenario (gain lots of yards, stall in the redzone in the first half) keeps happening makes it seem less fluky. Teams are playing the kind of bend-but-don't-break that GERG dreams of - they rarely tighten up their coverages or send pressure until we get within FG range, at which point we often stall.
I don't have a problem with anybody doubting whether we make it back to the top under RR as we haven't ever been there under RR. It takes a bit of faith and it's not for everybody. In my personal opinion I think next year the team matures and takes a big leap forward. In the fourth year a head coach should have things in place to succeed. As of right now I like our chances next year to compete for Big Ten title.
You are a negative poster and you make some good points from time to time. Own up to them though, don't hide behind I was just messin' around.
It's the turnovers that made the difference in all of the losses except Wiscy. We put up more yards in the first half than the second against MSU, about the same yards in each half on Penn State, and 100 "crazy" additional yards in the second half on Iowa. If this offense doesn't turn over the ball or miss lots of field goals we win 2 of those three - defense notwithstanding. We are not piling up yardage in Garbage time as you suggest.
i am very, very sad to see Justin Boren graduate and descend into anonymity.
For better or worse, I'm sure we'll find a way to keep his memory alive.
Only when we need our driveways shoveled...
by the Bills?
Agreed. I have been saying for a while that we have a significant improvement coming next year, while other teams will have some major holes to fill on their starting roster. When you consider that we not only have nearly everybody back, but also that many of our starters are going from being freshmen to sophomores, there is still a lot of upside yet to come. The biggest jump in performance is generally between freshman and sophompore years.
OSU just reloads. Doesn't matter how many or who they lose, Tressell has the buckeye machine well oiled.
UM used to reload too. Oh well, lets hope for a good effort against OSU, and then a good recruiting class.
they will be in the other division. i think the key game will be sparty. we must beat them next year to have a decent shot at playing in the big10 title game. we also have NE at home; the other key game.
unfortuneately, osu isn't as important anymore which sux.
I'd be interested to see what Nebraska loses off of this years team.
Michigan will be loaded...think about all of the injured players coming back next year..
Players will get injured next year, too. It always happens. IMO, we have been lucky that Denard has been able to play every game this year. No guarantees.
we remain a middle of the pack B10 team. Scootch over Illinois and Purdue. I don't believe you can be a BCS caliber team w/o quality D and ST play. I'm really hoping all you guys that suggest it's just our youth and injuries are correct.
RR needs to hire a new DC and ST coach..
ST play and defensive fundamentals are BRUTAL. And we're not recruiting a kicker right now? With all of the players coming back, this defense has the POTENTIAL to be very good, with good coaching..
He needs to do that but will he? Loyalty might be his downfall, cause I do not see him getting rid of the position coaches that cover the defense nor the ST's coach.
I am really hoping Brandon has serious discussions with him about the defense and coaching staff. He is very aware of all facets of the problems with this team. Being around average on defense would make a huge difference next year.
And if we're going to play at such a fast tempo, we need to be better offensively. In regulation, we're averaging 31.1 points per game in Big Ten play. Yards are great and all, but points are more important.
Limiting turn-overs, even a moderately improved defense, and not having a first year starter at quarterback should go a long way towards boosting that points per game number.
Is awesome! With a decent defense, that ought to be plenty....
If this were say, 1995, it'd be awesome. Nowadays that's pretty average.
I love that we have 5 straight home games against ND, Eastern, Western, SD State and Minnesota to start off the year followed by Northwestern. Get bowl eligiblity out of the way right off the bat and do work the remainder of the year. Cant wait! (after saturday and the bowl game that is)
SDSU is a solid team. Should be a win, but we better not get caught underestimating them next year.
After the last couple years and being at both the App State and Toledo game, I definitely don't take anyone for granted. Of course anything can happen but it never hurts to think positive as a fan =)
I'm partial to the Aztecs because I live in San Diego.
No one out here cares, but Brady Hoke has gotten them on track real fast. Though he'll probably bolt to Minny if given the chance.
That being said, if Michigan makes the leap they should make next year, they should absolutely start out 6-0.
We may be very happy at ND's struggles, but Brian Kelly seems to be pretty good at getting his programs better each year until they reach excellence. I would imagine that Kelly is just as pissed at a bad year as RR gets, and will work just as hard to get results.
I want to see a 6-0 start as much as anyone, but I don't see ND to be an autowin. Similar to Michigan, ND is going to have two good QB's next year. Their players will have a year of experience in Kelly's system. And they have been pulling in some decent recruiting classes.
ND is always a big game because it is ND, but it could be huge next year. It could be one of those games where a win looks better and better to the computers and the polls as the season goes on. I know it's way too early to say, but ND could be a game with BCS ramifications.
I think Brady Hoke will be at a different school next year, Perhaps Minny.
excellent point! RR should be rolling early, though given his track record, people will probably be reluctant to buy the M hype until we've beaten a solid Big Ten team (unless ND is actually good next year? Right-- til we've beaten a good Big Ten team).
I think it's reasonable to expect great things, although Northwestern isn't the pushover it usually is. With this schedule, looks like RR is in the driver's seat; win or lose, it will be 100% on him at that point.
badly NEEDS to beat MSU and Iowa next season
Our defense is our Achilles Heel. Until we become a top 30 defensive team, B10 will be always a tough ordeal.
/wall o text
A couple of things need to happen.
We must attract elite defensive talent to Michigan on a consistent basis.
This was compounded by the fact that when Carr era ended we had hardly any depth on the D and the players we recruited didn't qualify, threw a hissy fit and left or just never turned up. All in all - we have been really very unlucky with bringing elite defensive talent on board. The result is that we are playing freshman across the defense and while they are doing a good job absolutely, the situation is not ideal.
GERG - While I believe Gerg has been a great coach in the past, you simply can't run a 3-3-5 in the B10. It is a power conference and teams will chew us out with their power running games. This needs to change - Yes another scheme change/ coach change is needed.
/end wall o text
The losses on the other contending teams and our retention of almost everybody is one of the biggest reasons to look forward to 2011 as a contending season. The other is that we have won more each year which shows improvement.
Major issues to fix though and the only difference in the schedule is that we slide out Wisky and insert Nebraska. MSU and Iowa are road games.
We better count on being very good and assume they all will be too. Like everyone is saying, the really good programs don't tip over in their "down" years.
All of the "losses" that the OP notes are just standard turnover for those teams. They are all established programs at this point, especially OSU, so they simply reload. Michigan used to do this as well, going from the likes of Rob Renes, to Gabe Watson, to Alan Branch, and Lamar Woodley to Brandan Graham.
Now, we go from Brandon Graham to Greg Banks and Jibreel Black. Whether RR or Gerg stay long term, or a new regime comes in, the program has a long way to go to get back to solid footing.
Footnote - Jibreel may end up being a stud, but freshman Jibreel does not equal Jr. or Sr. B. Graham.
If RR doesnt get a new DC and let him assemble his own staff, he deserves whatever he gets. I've supported RR all along and still do, but as I've said at least a hundred times, with this offense coming back, if Michigans D is just in the top 70 right now, they are probably at least 9-2. If RR lets loyalty get in the way then we need a new HC.
2011 could be special if...
EDIT: Theres still a chance (albeit an outside one) of 8 or 9 wins this season!!! If only we had a decent defense! All of this negativity would be moot.
Last year all the fire richrod folks didn't give a shit about details and just harped that the only thing that matters is wins. Now we have their "required" totals and they suddenly are concerned with details.
Next season sets up well because we only have a couple really tough road games. The two that right now look the most difficult are MSU and Iowa. MSU will have Cousins as a Sr QB so that will be a very tough game. Iowa loses Stanzi and I'm not sure how their QB situation looks so we could be facing a QB who isn't quite ready for prime time.
We also have Illinois and Northwestern on the road but neither of those have been terribly difficult places to play. If the defense gets to the point where it's decent (and we've been saying that for two years now) and the offense becomes more efficient then we have a shot at hitting double-digit wins.
I like your style.
missed Adam Patterson and Mark Moundros. How could he have missed these guys
...about 100 times after the bowl game.
Other teams depth
EDIT: I want to enjoy this week (win/lose) and Bowl season before MgoBlog goes into the long wait till SEP 2011.