For those of you who recognize my Goonies handle and posts, I usually only contribute wise ass, hopefully humorous, comments on already established posts. However, watching the game with no sound in a fairly empty sports bar just outside of Chicago gave me a few thoughts about this team that I felt I needed to get off my chest. First, Denard is human. We all knew, whether we wanted to admit it or not, that he was going to have a few games in which he struggled. I take nothing away from Denard for his performance today. To those suggesting Tate should have been given a chance, I do think it may have had a positive impact on the game. However, Denard needed a game like today to realize what he really needs to work on more consistently and attempt to work through it in a game situation. He certainly didn't play as poorly as many of us think, but two interceptions in the end zone are game changers. He will learn from this and be better of for it.
Second, the defense obviously didn't play well, but they're learning as well. As much as Rogers and Martin going down hurt, other players got to step into a big game and get much needed experience. I was as mad as anyone seeing the MSU receiver streak past Cullen Christian for a TD, but growing pains are expected with a defense this young. The reps that Christian, Avery, Talbott, etc. are getting will pay dividends in the long run.
Third, the media attention should be off the team for a while. They are no longer undefeated and can work their behinds off with extra motivation to make up for this loss. Every now and then you need to take a step back to take two forward, and I completely believe that will be the case with this team. We've all seen how far they have come since Rich Rod's first year. This team will stay hungry and motivated for the rest of this season and for seasons to come, given the youth in key spots. These guys won't forget this loss. MSU beat them, plain and simple, but they will work their tails off to regain their spot at the top of the Big Ten in the very near future.
Lastly, I'm not trying to be one of those guys who says losing a game is a good thing. In college football, it never is. However, good can come from it if the team approaches the right way. I have full confidence in Rich Rod to keep steering this team in the right direction, and I hope the rest of the Michigan faithful do as well. With that, I'll finish my Jameson and 7 UP, go to bed, and wake up tomorrow knowing that a better effort will come next Saturday against Iowa.