One game down and now its time too compare the 2 team defenses, both Western Michigan and Nevada's, who took it on the chin UFC style in their games against Michigan and Notre Dame, as a way to gauge what might happen this Saturday in Ann Arbor.
Lets first look at Notre Dames red headed stepchild , Nevada.
Nevada returned 7 starters on defense. The rush defense was above average but that was a case of why run on em when you can throw it at will on the #119 ranked pass defense...yes #119.Take a moment to compose yourselves as if this was not the worst pass defense in the country, it was pretty damn close.
On to scoring defense where a deeper look into Nevada's opponents from last year and where these opponents ranked in offense for the whole year makes an even more compelling argument that Nevada's defense just sucked.
Being rated #99 in scoring defense looks bad enough but when you give up 48 points to the #64 ranked offense( New Mexico St.), 42 points to the #68 offense ( Maryland ), 31 points to the #75 offense ( Louisiana Tech ),38 points to the #72 offense ( Hawaii ),and 41 points to the #18 ranked offense( Boise St. ). I can cut them some slack for the 69 points Missouri laid on them as Mo. was the #8 ranked offense. The numbers kind of jump out at ya, hence the # 99 scoring defense ranking.
All of a sudden emu boy doesn't look so intimidating.
On to Michigan's directional in state opponent, Western Michigan.
Western returned only 3 starters from a defense that ranked #87 in total defense, #52 in pass defense, and #62 in scoring defense. Especially lame number in the total defense category and slightly below average in scoring defense but somewhat understandable when you look at some of the offenses they faced.
#12 ranked offense Nebraska, scored 47, #10 ranked scoring offense Rice, scored 38, #19 offense Illinois, scored 17, #17 offense Ball St., scored 45, and #23 ranked offense Central Michigan, scored 38.
The defensive numbers show a large advantage in favor of Western Michigan as the opponents they faced last year combined for a total offense rating of 16.1 and 37 points scored against. As for Nevada's opponents, they combined for a total offense rating of 50.8 and an incredible 45.4 points scored against.
The numbers heavily weigh in favor of Michigan's 31-7 defeat of WMU as a more impressive performance and puts Notre Dames offensive numbers against Nevada in perspective.
Jimmy Clausen's performance against the lamest of lame defenses also included his typical 4-5 balls where he just flings it and hopes for the best. 2 near interceptions in the first half alone,2 sacks, and his usual impersonation of NFL Films " Football Follies".
Meanwhile, Tate and DRob present quite a challenge to any defense with their different skill sets while still being an open book to the fans and coaches alike.Does Tate ever get rattled? Can DRob play mistake free with so little time in this exremely complicated system? Will someone hide Sheridan's uniform before the game?
So looking at this past Saturday's games for both Michigan and Notre Dame, the numbers tell a tale of misplaced enthusiasm for the Domers and a case of cautious enthusiasm for the Wolverine Nation.
Hopefully, Michigan will make this 2 in a row on its way to 13-0!! Go Blue!!