“On the offense last year, they had great spacing. That’s what I remember. Great spacing, great shooters, like Nik Stauskas, who’s not there right now. But they always have someone to fill the roles. They have a cutting offense, kind of hard to guard.”
|2 days 7 hours ago||Alabama and the read option||
I just saw Alabama's QB run a successful read option for a TD. Alabama. Even the most pro-style, most heavily advantaged (through recruiting and roster culling) team has realized that using the QB as a runner can provide benefits, and that doing so is not an offense to their football tradition. Maybe Brandon can use his millions to buy his fellow Luddites who want to pretend that the sport has not advanced the past 20-40 years Edsels (the cars, not Randy) and Encyclopedia Britannicas.
|5 days 3 hours ago||Bates' track record||
I know a Miami grad who claims that Bates is a great guy, very focused on academics, but basically cratered their football and basketball programs. I wish others familiar with Bates' tenure at Miami (Ohio) would chime in.
|1 week 4 days ago||2008 Wisconsin game||
Last time we beat a top-10 opponent, I believe.
|1 week 4 days ago||QB recruiting||
2010 recruiting class had Scout 5 star Devin Gardner. Even putting aside the 2011 "Process" recruiting class (Bellomy), we took no QB in 2012. That decision is one of the ones that has and will continue to hurt us the most.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Why he hired Gerg||
He was given very little money for a DC, and had little assurances for thr future, so the DC was coming into a situation that might only last a short period. With these restrictions, you get guys like Gerg.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Film sessions with Brandon||
They occurred when RR was coach here; he did not like them. If a genius had to waste time with an officious, useless administrator "participating," he would not like it. We haven't heard anything about Hoke complaining about the movie sessions with Dave.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Lord Grantham||
Didn't he explain to us that it would be 62-24 Oregon, because RR teams can't play defense?
Head must be exploding, since a road team in the third year under a head coach with a freshman QB and RB is beating the #2 game in the country. Oh, and that coach is RR.
|3 weeks 7 hours ago||Brad Bates||
For what it's worth, a Miami alum tells me that while Bates is a very nice human being and loves academics, he "literally destroyed our football and basketball programs." One person's opinion, but we might want to have others with connections to Miami (or BC) weigh in before we crown this as a can't-miss hire.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Ferrigno||
Hoke hired him from a high school to SDSU. I am not making that up. He also coaches TE. Wonder why they can't block.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Best OL||
Best OL is one who hasn't been ruined by Funk.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||So is Hoke||
He's a good man. He's graduating players. There's more to life than winning (especially when you're not good at it).
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Hindsight bias||
Given the status of the roster, including the fact that Gardner's redshirt request hadn't been granted at the time, and that they wanted to move to a traditional, non-spread offense, it didn't take very much foresight to see that Michigan should have taken a QB in the 2012 class. Hoke's plan at the time, looking ahead for the 2014 season, was to rely on Bellomy, a true soph Morris who hadn't enrolled yet, the possibility of a fifth year from the NCAA for a dual-threat QB, and an unknown true freshman from the class of 2014. Do you think that is the kind of thoughtful, strategic planning befitting a $4 million per year salary?
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Stitt's new play||
He has a variation on a tunnel screen that Texas A&M is using to great effect this year. Spavital calls Stitt a genius:
Would love to have him as HC of Offense. Turn everything on that side of the ball to him. (Oh, and get someone besides Ferrigno to coach special teams, please.)
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Percentage for injury||
While I don't disagree with a lot of the explanations offered, it sure seems like we have a good source providing information that DG is, in fact, still injured. (This isn't the sole explanation for the problems we are having on offense, or the problems that DG is experiencing, but it seems like it would definitely contribute.)
This highlights one of the worst aspects of the Hoke era, in my opinion -- the failure to take a QB in the 2012 class (e.g., Maty Mauk's class). He would be a true junior by now -- an upperclassman. You can't blame youth when you fail to fill the most important position in the game. And placing so much of the team's success or failure (football is extremely QB-dependent) on Bellomy and Morris seems like very poor planning.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Graham/Hoke/Harbaugh||
Graham's career winning percentage is 64.8%. He has four 10 win seasons under his belt as a head coach. He also has successful stints as a DC.
When Hoke was hired, he was a sub .500 coach with one 10 win season. He also had no experience as a DC or OC.
At the end of his time at Stanford, Harbaugh's career winning percentage was 68%, and he had one bowl win to his name.
Not saying that Graham is a Harbaugh equivalent, but saying he is a "slightly better version of Brady Hoke" is not really fair.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Hoke hired Ferrigno away from a high school coaching job||
And Ferrigno hadn't coached special teams in a decade. Is it really a shock that our special teams play is abysmal?
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Hoke's recruits||
We can rely not only on Bellomy, but also Hoke's QB recruit from the 2012 class. He's a true junior by this point, right?
|3 weeks 4 days ago||He "may have the OL thinking instead of just playing"||
Isn't this, by defintion, poor coaching? Instead of instructing them in a way that allows them to perform on the field in games, he instructs in a way that has them thinking (and thus playing slowly and getting beat) on the field in games. For linemen who have been under Funk for three years, that is not good.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||Ten||
How many players
For a punt Hoke is used to
I only count
|3 weeks 5 days ago||Answer||
In the garden, growth has it seasons. First comes spring and summer, but then we have fall and winter. And then we get spring and summer again.
|4 weeks 1 hour ago||Michigan football tickets and a Coke?||
I'd buy that for a dollar!
|4 weeks 2 days ago||Being There||
He is our Chauncey Gardner.
We could say he is our Bill Stewart, but Stewart won 9 games in each of three years following RR's departure at WVU.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||Livelihood||
Good points. With respect to Hoke, though, Brandon so grossly overpaid him (the only other Power 5 conference team who looked at Hoke -- Minnesota -- passed on him; there was no competition for his services, and he should have been paid commensurate with his lack of success and suitors) that he will never have to work another day in his life if he doesn't want to.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||Actually, worse boat||
Actually, we had much better options available in 2010. I don't think Brandon was ever interested or invested in performing a true, informed search at the time, but there were a lot of quality names that could have been in the mix four years ago. The options appear more limited right now.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||LostLetterman's comments||
I have no idea how connected he is, but people interested in a non-sanitized view of Hoke should check out his tweets from a few days ago. (He claims that he has heard from people close to the program.) The positives are there: Hoke has a good work ethic, and he is a good person/people like him, etc. But the comments about Hoke's coaching/mental prowess are pretty damning.
Two small side notes: Hoke's comments defending the old school punting formation (because he has always done it that way) are telling. And I don't mind the fact that he doesn't wear a headset so much as the fact that he has nothing to say into the headset. The guy is a very good recruiter. (It's funny -- his brother gave the media a quote on him, I think when he received the Michigan job, that said the same thing. It was odd, because he wasn't complimenting Brady's coaching.) But I suspect that he doesn't bring much to the table strategically or tactically.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Repping things in practice||
On a related note, while all teams may have the same number of hours each week, not all teams use those hours with the same efficiency. You can be sure that Chip Kelly's Oregon practices featured far more reps than Hoke's practices. Kelly is doing the same thing in the pros. I won't bother to link all the reports, but he is well-known for running drills (e.g., multiple QBs throwing at the same time, etc.) that maximize reps. He also focuses on sports science to a greater degree than other coaches. While coaches might have "valid reasons" for the way they coach, run practices, etc., not all coaches are created equal. There are better and worse coaches.
|5 weeks 2 days ago||Bo Pelini||
We should be so lucky. Bo Pelini has won either 9 or 10 games in each of the 6 seasons he has been a head coach (3 seasons with 9 wins; 3 seasons with 10 wins). Hoke has reached that level 1 time in his 3 years at Michigan. Including his stints in the MAC and the MWC, he has won at least 9 games in 3 seasons out of 11. 1/3 < 6/6 (in Big Ten). 3/11 < 6/6.
|5 weeks 2 days ago||MAC coach||
It's not that he was a MAC coach -- it's that he was a MAC coach with a lifetime winning percentage under .500. Past success is not a guarantee of future performance, but it does have some predictive worth.
|5 weeks 2 days ago||Exactly this||
I have posted those numbers repeatedly, because the myth of the Ball State "turnaround" is one of the most persistent and pernicious. I'd modify your last sentence, though, in that it took Hoke five years to surpass any of Bill Lynch's last three years (not just his final season). (I.e., each of Hoke's first four years was worse than each of Lynch's final three years.)
|5 weeks 2 days ago||Hoke's explanation -- the risk||
"To me, the risk was starting him maybe. I don’t know.”
|5 weeks 5 days ago||Pulling from lower levels||
I don't know anything about Leopold (but this will make me research him), but other schools have done well pulling from the lower levels. Chip Kelly went from OC at New Hampshire to OC at Oregon (in 2007); Brian Kelly had 13 years at Grand Valley State; etc.
|5 weeks 5 days ago||Spread punting||
In my mind, the decision to avoid spread punting hurt us on Saturday, and has hurt us in general. Moreover, it is purely a coaching issue. You can't blame RR or youth or "execution." Hoke's inability to articulate a defense of why he avoids spread punting (along the lines of they've alwyas done it the other way, if I recall correctly) was damning, in my opinion. While some here have said that Hoke and the coaches must know more than 99.9% of us about spread punting and must have carefully considered why Michigan will not be using it, etc., the inability to articulate a defense of the decision at least calls that into question.
Also, our special teams coach is someone that, when Hoke hired him, (a) was a high school head coach, and (b) had not coached special teams on the collegiate level for nearly a decade.
|5 weeks 5 days ago||Jim Mora Jr.||
ESPN has an article today on Mora turning down both Washington (his presumed dream job) and the Texas job (where they offered to fly out his parents and anyone else he wanted on a private jet to every game). It doesn't sound like he has any interested in leaving UCLA.
And, following your rule, I'll throw out a name (albeit an implausible one): Bob Stitt.
|6 weeks 1 day ago||The Ball State turnaround myth||
Hoke did not turn around Ball State. It was basically a .500 program for multiple years before he arrived. Each of Hoke's first four years was worse than each of the three preceding years under Lynch. Only in his fifth year did Hoke barely eclipse .500 (7-6), and he had one fluke year in 2008 (in which his team lost by 18 points as a ranked team to an unranked Turner Gill squad in the conference championship, and lost by 32 in the bowl game). After he left, the program he "built" went 2-10 the next year. (Compare this to excellent coaches who build stable programs with good coordinators -- i.e., take a look at Stanford post-Harbaugh, Oregon post-Chip Kelly.) Even a mediocre coach can have an above average year once in a while. Hoke did not turn around the program.
|6 weeks 1 day ago||"Ground game was working"||
2.9 is "working" in a world where the average last year was 2.5 on the road (for the whole year), and the HC and OL coach were both retained.
(Our average on the road was 5.56 yards/carry in 2010 -- RR's last year here.)
(Just for fun, I looked up Arizona's run average on the road the last few years: 2.9 in year before RR; 4.5 in RR year 1; 5.25 in RR year 2. It's crazy, because I've been told here that the only thing that has any effect on results is the age of the players, and that Michigan's youth is the sole determining factor of Michigan's success.)
|6 weeks 1 day ago||Beat ND on the road||
Yes, we actually beat a Kelly-coached ND team on the road not too long ago (with that offense that Hoke defenders claim was completely ineffective against real teams). We haven't beat any of our rivals on the road under Hoke. (Wasn't that supposed to be one of Brandon's evaluation guideposts?)
|6 weeks 4 days ago||Shocked face||
I thought that was your shocked face watching a team with a redshirt freshman QB and a true freshman RB win on the road before the coach has had four-five years to recruit his guys and play them as upperclassmen (the new standard of judgment). Out of curiosity, what face did you have when Arizona beat the fifth ranked Ducks 42-16 last year?
|7 weeks 2 days ago||Special teams coaching||
The resume of our special teams/TE coach would suggest he has had more success and focus on coaching the TE position than special teams.
|7 weeks 2 days ago||Scoring 7 points against capable defenses||
Are you asking whether we would rather have the 2010 Michigan offense or the 2013 Michigan offense? Believe it or not, many would choose 2010. Negative rushing yards for multiple complete games may be your idea of doing well against good defenses, but not everyone agrees. Putting up 158 yards total against Iowa (albeit with both positive running yards and positive passing yards) might be a great achievement in your book, but others might reasonably disagree. Some of us would also take the 2013 Arizona offense over the 2013 Michigan offense. Putting up 42 points on a fifth-ranked Oregon squad in a victory is something you surely discount. I'm sure they would trade that game for our domination of Akron and UConn, right?
|9 weeks 2 days ago||Hoke's comments about OL play||
I don't think we should expect much honest criticism in his public comments. Or, if his public comments actually reflect his true assessments, we should all be terrified. E.g., October 2013, after 27 for 27 performance: "I've got a great offensive line coach. I've got a great (offensive) coordinator."
|16 weeks 1 day ago||The Ball State turnaround myth||
Bill Lynch's last three years at Ball State: 5-6, 5-6, 6-6 (2000-2002).
Hoke's first four years at Ball State: 4-8, 2-9, 4-7, 5-7 (2003-2006).
Each of Hoke's first four seasons was worse than any of the previous three seasons under Lynch.
Regardless of the positives and negatives of Hoke as Michigan's coach, saying he "turned around" Ball State is about as accurate as saying he always wears long sleeves and a headset, that Rich Rod never got angry on the sidelines, and that Bill Lynch never threw his gum on the sidelines -- namely, not accurate at all.
|18 weeks 2 days ago||Unfortunately||
I just envisioned Hoke burning a timeout because we weren't ready with a number for Peppers. Too soon?
|25 weeks 5 days ago||Any names you want to throw out?||
Just so we can daydream a little? Unfortunately, while the Harbaugh brothers are two of the absolute best coaches in the business and also have ties to the program, I don't see either one coming to Ann Arbor. No up and coming (or established) superstar coach even seems like a possibility at this point.
|25 weeks 5 days ago||Where Ball State was before Hoke||
I do not see how this myth continues to live on. Here is Ball State's record the three years prior to Hoke's arrival (under Bill Lynch):
5-6, 5-6, 6-6
Here are Hoke's records at Ball State:
4-8, 2-9, 4-7, 5-7, 7-6, 12-1
Each of Hoke's first four years was worse than each of the three years prior to his arrival. Only in Hoke's fifth year did he improve upon Lynch's record (and only by half a game). He had one outlier year, and used that to propel him into a better job. But his record isn't anything like those of coaches who consistently and significantly improve the results of the teams they take over (e.g., Harbaugh, Meyer, etc.). Heck, Turner Gill had a better track record of improvement in the MAC during the same time period, taking a Buffalo team that had won 1 game (2003), 2 games (2004), and 1 game (2005) under the previous coach, and then leading them to 2 wins in his first year, 5 in his second, and 8 in his third (and beating Hoke's ranked Ball State team for the MAC championship).
|28 weeks 2 days ago||Our offensive line||
Thank goodness we have the OL coach who led Colorado State to seasons of 4-7, 6-6, 4-8, and 3-9 before hooking up with Hoke. I have to imagine that Funk and Tony Gibson share notes.
|28 weeks 4 days ago||Normal speed at Ball State||
Ball State under Bill Lynch (last 3 years):
Ball State under Brady Hoke (first 4 years):
In other words, each of Hoke's first four years at Ball State was worse than each of the last three years of his predecessor, Bill Lynch. (Lynch also got a shot at a Big Ten job and has most recently coached DePauw.) This is not a turnaround. I presume the poster meant that not equalling 6-6 or 5-6 for the first four years was not achieving the "normal speed" that Ball State had achieved under Lynch. No one denies that he had one very good year at Ball State (out of six).
While he may love Michigan, be a good uniter of the program (which it needed), etc., some of us are not impressed with what he did at his previous stops.
|31 weeks 8 hours ago||Still unknown||
As I understand it, this still does not explain why so many people find the show The Big Bang Theory funny. I assume our best minds are still trying to figure that one out.
|31 weeks 2 days ago||One answer||
Okay, figured out that it's on CBSSports.com, not CBSSportsNetwork.com, on the web. Still don't know about the apps, so I'll defer to others on that.
|31 weeks 2 days ago||Game available online?||
Sorry for the dumb question, but I've only had to use the Watch ESPN and BigTen2Go apps before. Will the game be viewable using the CBS Sports app? Is there a different way to watch it (CBSSportsNetwork.com)? Neither one seems to be showing the earlier game. (At work for the day.) Thanks for any help.
|34 weeks 3 hours ago||Even better||
Meyer asking Harbaugh "What's your deal?" after Michigan runs up the score.
|34 weeks 6 days ago||Reason for hope||
By year three of his stint at Colorado State, Funk's squad was averaging 2.5 yards per carry (114th out of 119th). In year four, they improved to 3.8 yards per carry (71st out of 120), on their way to a 3-9 record. Improvement, huzzah!
|36 weeks 20 hours ago||MAC Coach of the Year||
Well, 2011 MAC Coach of the Year was Ron English. I'm sure Michigan fans (and Hoke himself) would trade any of those coach of the year awards for a conference title.
|39 weeks 4 days ago||Michigan State, UCF, and Baylor||
Baylor has 2. More importantly, Baylor has Art Briles.
It will always be true that some teams outperform their recruiting ranks. Others underperform. Given that we were 7-6 this past year, I thought some people have focused on the relative recruiting success of Hoke. I was merely pointing out that at least this year, with respect to recruiting, as judged by Scout.com, our relative recruiting success against our primary rival is...not particularly strong. I'd much rather win in the fall than win in recruiting, but this was a thread about recruiting.
|39 weeks 4 days ago||Top 100 recruits||
At least according to these Scout.com ratings, Michigan has 3 commits in the top 100. Ohio State has 10. That is not good.
|40 weeks 1 day ago||Progression/regression||
2008 - 8 games under 300
2009 - 3 games under 300
2010 - 0 games under 300
2011 - 3 games under 300
2012 - 4 games under 300
2013 - 5 games under 300
Obviously, it's not that the total under RR (11) roughly equals the number under Borges (12). The majority under RR came in his first year. Borges' number of games under 300 rose each year. The regression under Borges at Michigan is consistent with the regression that Borges has experienced at other stops.
That said, he seems like a good guy and I wish him well.
|40 weeks 4 days ago||Business processes, etc.||
My question regarding this premise is why did Brandon agree to pay Hoke approximately $4M/yr in March 2011? That was not the market price for Hoke. Minnesota had looked at Hoke in November 2010, and then hired Jerry Kill in December 2010 (ultimately at around $1.2M/yr). Given the intense desire on Hoke's part to coach Michigan, and the lack of interest in Hoke from other top programs, his compensation appears significantly inflated.
|40 weeks 5 days ago||Bob Stitt - HC of small school||
Actually, I think Bob Stitt would take the right OC job. (He first gained some notoriety when Holgorsen credited him after the 2012 Orange Bowl as the inventor of the Fly Sweep, when WVU put up 70 on Clemson.) It would be like a Malzahn hire, when he jumped to the OC ranks of an FBS school. Not saying Michigan will consider it, but some smart program should interview him.
|40 weeks 5 days ago||Bob Stitt -- Colorado School of Mines||
Bob Stitt -- Colorado School of Mines.
|40 weeks 6 days ago||Michigan's schedule||
Given that Auburn this year played at LSU and at Texas A&M, and also played Alabama, Georgia, Ole Miss, and Missouri, is Michigan's schedule next year really a murderer's row? I would say no. (It will of course be harder than this year's schedule.)
|40 weeks 6 days ago||Yards per carry||
Cal. under Borges:
’01 5.7 (pre-Borges)
Auburn under Borges:
’10 5.6 (pre-Borges)
’12 4.1 (Loeffler )
’13 6.3 (Malzahn)
’11 3.4 (pre-RR)
Count me as someone who does not believe that all OCs, all schemes, and all S&C programs are relatively equal on the FBS stage. (If that were truly the case, we should simply hire the staff willing to work for the lowest amount. Our spending suggests that we do not subscribe to this theory.)
|41 weeks 3 days ago||E.g., LSU||
LSU started a true freshman at center this year that Hoke turned away (because he had filled up the class at that point on OL) -- Ethan Pocic. And this was despite the fact that Pocic had not even played any center in high school. Stop blaming the former regime. It's year four for Hoke, Funk, and Al.
|41 weeks 4 days ago||Congrats to Jerry Montgomery||
Oklahoma D line coached by our former D line coach Jerry Montgomery, who was poached at the end of last season.
|41 weeks 4 days ago||Freshman offensive linemen||
I believe Ethan Pocic, whose offer Hoke pulled when we filled up and who was high on Michigan, started some games this year at center for LSU as a true freshman. I also believe he had never played the center spot before reporting to LSU.
|41 weeks 5 days ago||247Sports article (free) - Peppers||
The author of the article has responded in the comments, and notes that while Speight has "better tools, but sometimes the ball does not come out right," and Peavy has been the most consistently accurate, the best QB he has seen on Team Nitro has been...Jabrill Peppers.
|41 weeks 5 days ago||Return to traditional Michigan run game||
2010: 5.58 yards/attempt
2011: 5.15 yards/attempt
2012: 4.76 yards/attempt
2013: 3.28 yards/attempt
|41 weeks 6 days ago||This narrative||
This narrative is not only tired, but just not accurate. The Arizona QB literally had no offers coming out of high school. He enrolled in Arizona last year out of junior college. It appears he had no other offers coming out of junior college, unlike, for example, Bo Wallace or even Nick Montana. With this zero star recruit, RR leads them to an 8-5 record and a beatdown of Oregon and BC in their bowl game. And you attribute this to a plethora of talent left by Stoops? If this were Michigan and Hoke, many would be saying that he needs a four/five star QB with four years under genius Al to learn to properly "execute" his perfect West Coast Offense, of which Al would not change a thing, no matter what happens in any game.
The true freshman leading receiver for Arizona is also a three-star recruit. How can it be that a true freshman is productive? Is this person attiributable to the cupboard Stoops left as well?
|41 weeks 6 days ago||Money for John Harbaugh||
To be fair, though, somehow we decided to pay $4 million for a coach that has never won a conference title, and is barely .500 lifetime (even coaching in the MAC and MWC). (The fact that Brandon hired Hoke and Borges doesn't surprise me; the fact that he is wildly overpaying them is somewhat troubling.) If John Harbaugh -- a Super Bowl winning coach who has won 2/3 of his games in the NFL, is in his prime, has a great coaching tree (e.g., Chuck Pagano coached under him), has Michigan ties, and is not a diffiicult personality (like his brother) -- were really an an option at $7 million a year, Michigan would be foolish not to pay it.
|41 weeks 6 days ago||Difficulty of West Coast Offense||
The problem with trying to implement a difficult offense that takes 3 years to really learn at Michigan is that colleges have constant turnover. This is not the 49ers, which might have the same QB and receivers for the better part of a decade.
|42 weeks 6 hours ago||Hoke's aspirations||
Yes, Hoke:UM::Bill Stewart:WVU.
(Except Bill Stewart had a better 3 year post-RR win-loss record at WVU than Hoke has had at UM.)
|42 weeks 1 day ago||12th game under 300 yards?||
Isn't this the 12th game under 300 yards for Borges?
2011: WMU, Mich. St., Va. Tech
2012: Ala., ND, Neb., OSU
2013: UConn, Mich. St., Neb., Iowa, K. St.
Note that in true Borges regression fashion, he has had more each year.
In 2010, our worst offensive output was 342 yards against 15th ranked Miss. State.
|42 weeks 4 days ago||Injury||
Any news about an injury that Borges may have suffered around 2001?
|42 weeks 6 days ago||Top 10 recruiting classes||
Our recruiting classes were ranked as following according to 247Sports the three years prior to Hoke's arrival:
Yes, the 2012 and 2013 recruiting classes were good, and better than the 2008-10 period, but it is not as if we went from the 40s to the top ten. Recruiting is not a panacea that cures poor coaching.
There is a reason why Auburn under Loeffler last year did not win a single SEC game, and is in the championship game this year under a new staff. At some point, the finger-pointing at the RR era will not simply be overplayed, but will not hold any water at all. (To look at it another way, has the cupboard been bare at every place Borges has coached? Why has he not lasted at any major job in the past 15 years? In what program that he coached has the offense gotten better over time?)
*Edit: One last note. Oregon over this period (2008-present) has never had a top 10 recruiting class. Stanford had one (2012, which preceded a 51st ranking for a small class in 2013). Other than 2011 (the "Process" year with Dave Brandon), Michigan has consistently had more highly ranked recruiting classes than Oregon or Stanford. A team does not need multiple top 10 recruiting classes to field a competent offense.
|43 weeks 3 hours ago||Mauk, QB recruiting, and roster management||
Rather than try to re-invent the wheel, I'll simply link to this discussion from 2011 (in a Maty Mauk commitment thread), in which Magnus points out that having more than 3 scholarship athletes on your roster at the most important position is a good idea:
Also, if I remember correctly, Michigan didn't even know whether Gardner would get a medical redshirt when they made the decision to forego taking a QB that class.
|43 weeks 5 hours ago||Borges||
I don't think it's controversial to say that Borges must have had a hot seat at points during this year (e.g., when we were breaking 40 year records of offensiveness ineptitude). Given that he always points to "execution" as the problem and never admits that any of the problems can be attributed to him (e.g., never says something like "I called a bad game -- I shouldn't have run Fitz that 27th time when we were averaging 1 yard a carry"), it is not implausible to think that it will cross Borges' mind that a poor offensive showing this weekend could be blamed on a true freshman QB in his first start. Frankly, it's a much better excuse than blaming OL recruiting from 3-4 years ago, or the youth at OL in a late season game when everyone has starts under their belts.
|43 weeks 6 hours ago||Agreed||
And the excuses about OL recruiting from four years ago, which seem to be the latest and most prominent excuse for the team's regression since the Sugar Bowl, need to end. We're about to start year four of the Hoke/Borges(probably)/Funk era. Of course, for Borges, if it isn't RR to blame, it's the lack of "execution" on the players' part.
|45 weeks 1 day ago||The facts||
Considering that we are likely to maintain an OC after a couple of the worst games in modern Michigan history (and a three year period of regression, consistent with the regression he has had at nearly every other stop), so I think we are long past facts having any value...but just to quickly respond:
After MSU went 3-5 in league play last year, they actually fired their Offensive Coordinator. I would be happy with following their lead, as you suggest. Or are you now going to change your example?
(Obviously it doesn't matter. Many people here are fine with the status quo. I would rather make a change. It is a miserable time to be a fan, seeing how well our rivals are doing, how well teams like Auburn are doing in the first year of a transition, etc.)
|45 weeks 1 day ago||To be the best||
To be the best, you need to hire the best, or at least individuals who are elite. We have a .500 head coach is a basically a DL coach who recruits well. (And he reunited the fan base initially, which was a very good thing.) As a pure delegator, he is reliant on his coaching staff. What other program wanted Borges when he washed out from the SEC? Who is coming to learn at the footsteps of Funk? We are so far away from the best, to put that as a goal is not fair to the kids who have to struggle under this coaching staff. (One area in which our coaches are overachieving is compensation. While Michigan previously underpaid its coaches for the privilege of coaching at Michigan, the fact that we are now paying one of the highest salaries in college football to a coach that has never won a conference championship on any level and that no one elite program would want is somewhat jarring.)
Brandon, and many others, did not want the best -- they wanted the familiar and the non-threatening. A "man who won't need a map to Ann Arbor." Hoke fit that perfectly.
Even some posters here have thrown out the name Scott Loeffler as a potential Borges replacement because he is a Michigan man and therefore familiar. This is despite the fact that the Loeffler-led Auburn team last year lost every SEC game it played, and in the first year under Malzahn's new coaching staff, they are headed to the national championship game. (But it takes five years to evaluate coaches, right?)
|45 weeks 1 day ago||Rutgers standard||
Nice to see Rutgers not accepting 3-5 conference record as something that is okay without making any changes. A level of expectations we can aspire to one day again, I suppose....
|45 weeks 4 days ago||4th year as coaches||
In the fourth year of Hoke/Borges/Funk, you still will not be able to attribute any blame to them? Even if they cannot coach up, for instance, one of the highest ranked guards in the country as a recruit, in his third year under these coaches? Might as well give everyone a perpetual pass -- RR is to blame for all problems forever. On the other hand, Auburn fired Scott Loeffler (OC) and Gene Chizik (head coach), who led Auburn to a 0-9 SEC record last year, and in year one of the new regime, they are 7-1 in the SEC, ranked #3 in the country, and have the 5th best rushing offense.
|46 weeks 2 days ago||Any clues?||
Any clues who Michigan has in mind for OC?
|46 weeks 4 days ago||Coaching and Indiana||
Doesn't surprise me to see Indiana, with OL Coach Frey, well above the trendline in all of your charts. I hope we have an excellent OL Coach and OC next year to coach up all the talent we have on our roster.
|47 weeks 2 days ago||Bowl game||
Is that a possibility? I don't know enough about the picking priority, etc., to tell if that could even happen.
|47 weeks 2 days ago||Our old coaches||
Early in the second quarter, Arizona has 13 first downs (and 21 points) on the 5th ranked Ducks, using a QB that did not get a FBS, FCS, or Division III offer out of high school.
|47 weeks 6 days ago||Why we aren't yelling at Mattison||
We aren't yelling because Mattison took one of the worst defenses in the country and immediately turned it around. It has been a top 20/25 outfit ever since. No excuses that he needs five years of recruiting his kinds of players, etc. Moreover, Mattison has a track record of success, which, while not a perfect indicator of future success, is a better sign than a track record of failure.
It appears that you would like to use scoring offense/defense as your indicator of whether a coach is performing well (as opposed to total offense/defense, or FEI). Even cherry-picking this statistic, which helps Borges (as opposed to total offense), here is his track record (this includes the year prior to his arrival as well as his years at each stop):
Year Team Total
2000 Cal 80th
2010 Mich 25th
In the Pac-10/Pac-12, regression.
In the Big 10 (at Indiana), steady regression.
In the SEC, after catching lightning in a bottle with two first round RBs (seniors) and a first round QB (senior), all developed by a previous coach, three years of steady regression.
In the Mountain West, one good year (2010).
In the Big 10 again, regression. (Yes, the scoring offense number at 39th so far isn't as bad as 57th last year. I do not think we will be scoring as many points on Ohio State as we did on CMU or Indiana. We have one TD in regulation the past three games.)
Given that we are willing to pay an OC enough to put him in the handful of highest paid coordinators in the country, we can find people with better resumes (i.e., track records of success, rather than regression). There were threads earlier that threw out a handful of names. Personally, I would love to see Hoke and Brandon take a chance on someone like Bob Stitt. But if you want to emulate Stanford (and we swung and missed on Harbaugh and his staff), why not go after Bloomgren? Or how about Charlie Taaffe (who makes a quarter of what Borges does? Or Sean Kugler, about whom Chris Peterson apparently said: "There's absolutely no question that he's the best football coach I've ever been around." (Kugler was assistant head coach with Peterson at Boise State in 2006, when they went undefeated.) He's making $280,000 as head coach of UTEP. He could coach his son and the rest of the blue chips we brought in, who look confused under Funk and Borges. We have plenty of preferable options to our current situation.
|48 weeks 20 hours ago||Wisconsin under Bielema||
Bielema took underwhelming recruiting classes and won the conference numerous times, making it regularly to the Rose Bowl. Those who lack our "clear naivety of organizational dynamics" would prefer more regression under Borges (who has not made it to the end of a fourth year anywhere in the past dozen years, being fired from Cal, Indiana, and Auburn) to actual success on the field?
Also, "flush[ing] a lot of QB recruiting"? We foolishly passed on taking any QB one year; Borges has done a really fine job of coaching up Bellomy and Gardner; and while I hope Speight turns out to be a star, he is a consensus 3 star recruit.
When you are willing to pay an OC enough money to make him top 3 in the country, you don't need a successor lined up when you realize that the one you have now is not only not elite, but is below-average. His offenses have regressed here, just like they did at Cal, Indiana, and Auburn. Given that we are now willing to write a big check for an OC, we could use that money this offseason to bring in someone who is worth it.
|48 weeks 20 hours ago||Huh?||
Akron's players are better than ours? It seems like you are saying that anyone with more career starts is better than someone with fewer. I will happily line up 3 and 5 star recruits with little experience taught by competent coaches against Akron (whose very good coaches are working with players who largely did not receive offers from AQ teams). (Akron's 2011 recruiting class had one 3 star recruit, nine 2 star recruits, one 1 star, and 13 recruits with no stars.)
Moreover, I thought that Hoke defenders' main point is how well he recruits. If recruiting ranks do not matter (because only experience does), why are we paying $4M to this head coach?
Our players are not the problem. We have seen what the defensive staff can give with all levels of recruits, helping individuals who have largely struggled get better. We have also seen what this offensive staff does. Based on my understanding of Borges' history, I think we have been set up for regression and disappointment.
|48 weeks 20 hours ago||Little talent on offense?||
We have (1) a returning LT that would have gone top 5 in the NFL draft; (2) a second or third round RT; (3) a senior QB who was a top recruit; (4) the top RB in the nation in last class, according to some scouting services; (5) the #1 guard from 2012, etc., etc. We don't have the talent to beat Akron or UConn by more than fluke and a prayer? We may not be able to get anything out of these players due to our coaches' ineptitude, but to think that we have "little talent on offense" is hilarious to the 100 (or more) other FBS teams that would trade their offensive rosters for ours in a heartbeat (provided they would have an opportunity to coach them up). Take a look at the roster of the teams that are beating us, or that we are beating with goal-line stands at the end of games, and reconsider.
|48 weeks 1 day ago||Hoke doesn't fulfill the criteria||
He was clearly referring to Urban Meyer. Meyer took a 2-9 Bowling Green team, and immediately turned it around, going 8-3 in year one and 9-3 in year two.
Both of his years at Utah, he won the conference title and the bowl game, going undefeated in year two (and taking Utah to a top 5 ranking).
Hoke has never won a conference title, even in the MAC or WMC. He inherited a Ball State team that went 6-6 under Bill Lynch, and spend the next four years below .500. His fifth year they went 7-6. Lightning struck in year six, but even then, Hoke's ranked Ball State team was soundly beaten by Turner Gill's team in the MAC championship.
We hired a .500 coach with no conference titles to his name (and he still does not). He is a good recruiter, helped reunited the fanbase, and will always be incredibly dependent on having excellent coordinators underneath him if his teams are going to succeed. We do not have an excellent offensive coaching staff, including OC.
|48 weeks 1 day ago||Michael Cox under Hoke/Borges||
Michael Cox was also an option available to the non-RR coaching staff we have in place now (in Cox's senior year). Cox was given fewer carries by Hoke/Borges (zero carries in 6 game appearances). I'm glad he has found a place on the Giants' roster, and I wish him the best, but let's not turn this into a RR criticism. (Cox also averaged 3.6 yards per carry at UMass, with a season long of 32. So it's not like he lit the world on fire in his final year (on a weak team, admittedly).)
|48 weeks 2 days ago||Thank you Desmond||
In the end, this will ultimately be Dave Brandon's decision. The more he hears from former players (Larry Foote, Ryan Van Bergen, Desmond Howard), the more likely he will cut the cord. As a marketer, he also must realize that with a new OC he can sell hope, and he needs that hope to keep getting preferred seat donations, to support recruiting, etc. (Right now, all anyone can see is regression, which has been Borges' staple for the past 15 years.) Furthermore, Borges had no Michigan ties. He wasn't a coach under Carr, etc. Hopefully Brandon realizes that the Michigan brand he holds so dear can't take another year with this offensive staff.
|48 weeks 3 days ago||Chant||
Can we get a "Fi-re Bor-ges [clap, clap . . . clap, clap, clap]" chant going? Pretty hard to misconstrue that.
|48 weeks 5 days ago||Screen plays?!||
Screen plays?! Your answer is screen plays?!
(Said in Jim Mora voice, paraphrasing Al at recent press conference.)
|48 weeks 5 days ago||"Great track record"?||
Those halycon days at UCLA were actually 1997 and 1998. In 1999, UCLA and Borges averaged 20.9 ppg.
He had one year at Cal (2001), in which the team went 1-10. The offense averaged 18.3 points per game (105th of 117). Everyone was fired.
He then had two years at Indiana under Gerry DiNardo (2002 and 2003), in which the teams went 3-9 and 2-10. In 2002, they averaged 21.5 points per game (95th of 117). In 2003, they regressed, averaging 14.8 points per game (115th of 117).
Despite that, somehow he was hired by Tuberville at Auburn. He inherited a roster with redshirt senior QB first round pick Jason Campbell, senior RB first round pick Cadillac Williams (5th pick overall in 2005), and redshirt senior RB first round pick Ronnie Brown (2nd pick overall in 2005). With those pieces in place (and those players having been developed for three to four years by others), the 2004 Auburn offense ranked 18th of 120. With each year of Borges at the helm, it regressed: 30th in 2005, 56th in 2006, and 85th in 2007. Borges did not make it to the bowl game in 2007.
He did not coach in 2008.
You'll see a similar regression at Michigan: 27th in 2011, 58th in 2012. (I expect the Iowa and Ohio State games to lower our averages this year as well.) We are putting up 100 yards fewer per game. Our yards per play have regressed each year: 6.8 in 2010 (under RR); 6.2 in 2011; 6.1 in 2012; 5.6 in 2013 so far.
People who know more about football than I do can argue whether he makes the right calls, but the players keep messing things up; whether his offense would work in a perfect world, but recruiting or youth or something else is to blame; whether as someone in the field, he must be given five years at a stop to try to make things work, etc. I simply would like people to know his actual background. Just like when people say Hoke inherited a cratering program at Ball State and turned it around, when in truth, Ball State had gone 6-6 the prior two years under Bill Lynch, and Hoke spent four years trying to get back to .500, and went 7-6 in his fifth year.
Anyway, typing out these statistics is my form of running Touissant up the middle 27 times. Doubt it is having much effect, but feel compelled to do it anyway.
[Note: I see that you are saying he is not working out at Michigan, so I am not arguing with you; I would simply like more people to know more about his record.]
|49 weeks 1 hour ago||Bill Stewart||
After RR left WVU, they went with a non-Xs and Os guy who really loved the school and the state and their tradition (and was reportedly a good guy). A man who wouldn't need a map to the campus. Amazingly, his three year record will likely match or eclipse Hoke's. Yes, Bill Stewart went 9-4 each of his seasons as WVU's head coach. Note, he even shared a conference title, something our coach never has.
|49 weeks 20 hours ago||Ball State turnaround||
2000 5-6 (Coached by Bill Lynch)
2001 6-6 (Coached by Bill Lynch)
2002 6-6 (Coached by Bill Lynch)
2003 4-8 (Coached by Brady Hoke)
2004 2-9 (Coached by Brady Hoke)
2005 4-7 (Coached by Brady Hoke)
2006 5-7 (Coached by Brady Hoke)
2007 7-6 (Coached by Brady Hoke)
He inherited a .500 team from Bill Lynch. For the next four years, Hoke could not get them to .500. In his fifth year, he went 7-6. He had one fluke season in his sixth year.
If, after the 7 win 2010 Michigan season under RR, Hoke had gone 4-8, 2-10, 4-8, 5-7, and 8-5 in five seasons at Michigan, would you consider that a "turnaround"? I do not think that the term "turnaround" can apply to what happened at Ball State under Hoke.
|49 weeks 21 hours ago||"Look at Auburn for example"||
Auburn brought it one of the best modern offensive minds (Malzahn) and a new OL coach, etc. Dave Brandon and Hoke have consistently taken the position that such offenses lead to weaker defenses. The coaches that could bring us into modern era college football might also need a "map to Ann Arbor," another huge strike for Brandon. Probably better to simply watch Auburn football if you want to see offensive competency. Watching the Brandon/Hoke/Borges/Funk/Wellman ensemble put together an offense is kind of like watching your relatives in an awful community theatre play. It's painful, they apparently don't realize how bad they are, and there are much better forms of entertainment out there, but because of familial ties, this is how you will be spending your Saturday. Our Town for the win.
|49 weeks 3 days ago||"And is better"||
Like those new annoying commercials "And is better," it sure would have been nice to have excellent offensive coaches AND excellent defensive coaches.
With Mattison, we immediately became a top 20 defense, and have consistently stayed there (or close thereto). No mention of needing some new recruits, no blaming RR's lack of recruiting on defense, no issues of "youth/inexperience," etc. Excellent coaching, immediate and consistent results. Those results were also consistent with Mattison's sustained excellence and success at high level positions, and the demand for him in coaching circles.
On offense, after jumping 50 spots from 2008 to 2009, and then jumping another 50 spots to a top ten offense in 2010, we regressed to a top 50 offense in Borges' first year, and regressed further in his subsequent years. Again, this is consistent with his one year stint at California (everyone fired), his two year stint at Indiana with Gerry DiNardo (3-9 first year, 2-10 second year), his four year stint at Auburn (consistent regression, until fired before bowl game). He did have a good year in the Mountain West in 2010, where SDSU played all of one game against a BCS automatic qualifying (i.e., major conference) team.
Unfortunately, it looks it is going to take Michigan longer to learn from history this time around, and it will be a shame if by the time we bring in excellent offensive coaches we don't have Mattison around anymore. And is better.
|49 weeks 4 days ago||Coaching||
Hard to tell why no one has pointed out a big difference between 2012 Auburn and 2013 Auburn, and the significant improvement they have made: they brought in excellent offensive coaches (Malzahn and his OL coach) in 2013. Unfortunately, it looks like we will be saddled with Borges at a minimum for next year, and probably Funk and Wellman as well. Anyone who is familiar with Borges' history, frankly, cannot be optimistic about that fact. (E.g., his best year at Auburn was his first, when he inherited senior, first round NFL talents that others had developed for years. As time progressed, his offenses regressed.) In fact, the trajectory of his Auburn offenses over time and his Michigan offenses over time is more similar than we would like to admit.
|50 weeks 3 days ago||What they inherited||
Meyer inherited a 2-9 Bowling Green team (2000). His first year, Bowling Green went 8-3 (2001), and the next year they went 9-3 (2002).
He then inherited a 5-6 Utah team (2002). His first year, Utah went 10-2 (2003), and the next year they went 12-0 (2004).
Three times in six years in the SEC (admittedly the toughest conference right now), his team went 13-1. He won two national championships.
He has won his first 20 games for OSU, and the comparison of how OSU and UM dealt with Penn State speaks volumes.
Hoke inherited a Ball State team that had gone 5-6 the previous two years (2000 and 2001). It took six years before Hoke had a team break .500 at Ball State (7-6 in 2007).
He had 4 win and 9 win seasons at SDSU. (His successor has had 8 win and 9 win seasons.)
He has never won a conference championship.
He is undoubtedly a great recruiter. (If you go back and read clippings from his hiring, this is what his brother points to as his greatest strength.) He is neither an offensive nor defensive genius, which he is the first to admit. He (and Brandon's willingness to open the purse strings) brought in a top-notch DC. He also attached himself to Borges and Funk. As a delegator, his success will rise and fall with the quality of the coaching staff he brings in.
To attribute the relative success of the two coaches to one snapshot of recruiting ranks or a "culture of success" seams a stretch. Other coaches are having more success with less talent. Furthermore, to the extent that we want to attribute success to a "culture," there is an argument that Meyer, as someone with the highest level of success previously (conference championships and national championship), can foster that culture, while Hoke, who has never experienced even a conference championship, cannot.
All of this is a long way of saying that while Hoke may be the right person for the job (great character, reunited the fanbase and the factions within the program, priorities aligned with Michigan values), he really isn't on the same level as Meyer as a coach. For the success of the program, I hope he has some metric that he is using to evaluate his coaching staff, and that he does not put loyalty to them or a softness on personnel issues (nobody with a heart likes to fire someone who is loyal, but simply not talented or good enough for the job) above the welfare of the program. E.g., how bad does the line need to be (with multiple NFL-level seniors, 5 star redshirt freshmen, etc.) before Funk is replaced? How many 27 for 27 games against opponents that OSU decimates (by taking what the defense is giving) need to occur before Hoke decides that Borges is limiting the upside of this program? I'm not saying I know the answers, but if there are not metrics in place, we might as well say that coaching does not matter and that whoever Hoke hired at his first stop should be with the program forever. That seems extremely narrow-minded.
|51 weeks 2 days ago||Head coaching record||
"A record is a reflection of one's coaching acumen."
This is Hoke's 11th year as a head coach, and RR's 20th year. RR has a better win percentage over his much longer tenure. RR has 8 conference championships; Hoke has none.
Brandon paid more for a quality DC (Mattison) than he paid the DC and OC combined under RR. Almost immediately, UM went from one of the worst defenses in the country to a steadily good defense ever since (even in the first year, without "Hoke's guys").
On the other hand, our offense has steadily regressed from the heights of 2010.
If, after watching the Akron, UConn, and PSU games this year, you think we have built an incredibly sturdy base of a program, especially on offense, that is your right. Others, who have seen what Borges has done throughout his journeyman career, or the lack of OL development under Funk, see things differently.
But given your original statement regarding coaching acumen, you may want to tone down your comments on RR and Hoke. (Or, at least until Hoke catches up in the win column, wins a few conference titles, etc.)
|1 year 4 days ago||Indiana||
You offer a lot of great analysis, which I am not taking issue with, but there is at least one thing that is worth pointing out about Indiana. They have our old OL coach. In the wake of the past four games, a number of people have tried to excuse our OL performance because we (a) are too young/inexperienced, and/or (b) don't have enough talent. Indiana/Coach Frey had to start two true freshmen last year - one at LT and one at G. Both were three star recruits, and combined they had one non-Indiana Big Ten offer offer among them (to Illinois). Given what Indiana is accomplishing with young, inexperienced, and relatively lightly regarded recruits, this idea that Funk and Borges need 4 years of coaching up 4 and 5 star talents before we can expect competent line play is crazy, in my opinion. (Not saying you are arguing that, but a lot of Borges/Funk apologists appear to be.)
|1 year 5 days ago||Our old OL coach was very good||
Greg Frey is an excellent OL coach. He took two true freshman 3 star recruits at Indiana last year (only one other Big Ten offer among both of them - to Illinois), and started them at LT and G. Both earned Freshmen All-American honors. Imagine what a good OL coach could do with guys like Kalis (RS Freshman 5 star). Our problem is not youth, inexperience, or talent, because a lot of teams are doing a lot more with a lot less.
|1 year 6 days ago||Coach of the year||
I believe his teams would rather win a conference title than have Hoke win an award -- something they have never done in any of his stops in any conference. (For the record, I am fine keeping Hoke, but as a cheerleader/CEO/recruiter type, he needs to surround himself with great assistants. Borges and Funk are not great assistants. Given enough regression, and Borges' history is a repeated story of regression, the great recruiting will suffer.)
|1 year 6 days ago||"Great O-line coach"||
If Hoke honestly believes that he has a great o-line coach, it is far more likely that we will go through another full purge in 3-4 years after the bloom of the 2011 season and the "This is Michigan" speeches wear off. Hoke is admittedly a CEO, great recruiter, face of the program type coach. If he cannot surround himself with quality coordinaters and position coaches, we are doomed. Hopefully he is just saying this to keep the public and his team calm, but if he and Brandon cannot see that they have a Greg Robinson/Tony Gibson level problem on one side of the ball, we should expect 2010 type results going forward (with a slight adjustment for better recruiting, until those recruits realize they will be wasted if they are being coached by Borges and Funk).
|1 year 6 days ago||A good coach can do much more||
You want examples? Just look at the team we are playing this week, which has our old O-line coach. Last year he was forced to start a true freshman at LT and a true freshman at guard. And they weren't blue-chip, 5 star recruits. No, he had two 3 star guys -- one with one other Big Ten offer (Illinois), the other with only MAC offers. Both earned freshmen All-American honors. The LT allowed two sacks all year, the other true freshman none. Indiana was second in the Big Ten in total offense. This idea that coaching does not matter, and that only teams with upperclassmen four and five star talent can show any competence is crazy. Most teams in the country cannot fathom the talent we have to work with. What this offensive staff (especially Funk, but throw in Borges and the S&C guys) does with that talent is awful.
|1 year 1 week ago||Let Dave Brandon know||
Let him know how what we cares out ($ to Michigan) will be affected by the product on the field put out by Borges and Funk. (Don't even think about the possibility of Hoke going anywhere.) His email address is dabran (at) umich (dot) edu. I just re-read my email exchange with him from 2010 when rumors on Hoke started to surface. You'll be surprised -- you are likely to receive a response.
|1 year 1 week ago||Points per game||
Arizona was 15th in the country last year in points per game. Michigan was 57th. But if you think Al Borges and Daryl Funk have had better success and are better offensive coaches that RR, you are entitled to that opinion. I disagree. As I said, I am not defending his defenses, which were awful. The criticisms I was responding to were about his offenses.
|1 year 1 week ago||I'm not defending his defenses||
I understand that his defenses here were awful, and maybe they will always be awful. Criticisms on the board here tonight were about his offense. Say what you will about his defenses, his recruiting, his sideline demeanor, etc., but to think his offenses do not work, are only relevant "in 2003," etc., is wrong, in my opinion. I still wish we could couple Mattison's defense with an excellent modern offensive mind, with recent sustained success at the college level (run focused spread or pass focused spread). And I have my doubts that we will have the sustained elite recruiting (Alabama now, or USC a few years ago) needed to rely on simply beating opponents based on talent and size advantages on offense.
|1 year 1 week ago||RR's offense||
Not that any RR haters care at all about facts, but in his first year at Arizona last year, his offense was ranked 7th in the country in yards/game, with a 60 yd/game improvement over a very good 2011 number. (We were 79th - the Al Borges regression in full effect. We had been 8th in the country in 2010, and regressed to 42nd in 2011 in Al's first year.) RR is playing a QB who was a zero star, zero offer (even from Division II and Division III schools) kid. We make excuses because our 3 and 4 star recruits only have had a couple years under Funk. Say what you will about the weakness of the Big East, the Oklahoma team his WVU team beat, etc., but our current staff's first Big Ten conference title will be their first conference title ever. (I.e., none during the stint in the MAC, and none during the stint in the Mountain West.) Okay, resume your RR bashing.
|1 year 3 weeks ago||Wisconsin line||
Aren't they starting two or three new linemen this year, including a sophomore? And are they not coached by an OL coach who has been there less than a full season?
|1 year 3 weeks ago||Coaching||
Unfortunately, the idea that great and bad coaching has an effect on play is accepted when it comes to Mattison and Gibson, but not when it comes to Funk. I don't understand it.
|1 year 3 weeks ago||He could aim||
He could aim for squeaking out wins against Akron and UConn, regressing offensive stats, and apologists who say he needs 4 or 5 years to get many 4 star upperclassmen coached for years by Funk. Oh wait, that's what your dear leaders are saying.
|1 year 3 weeks ago||Regression||
If Borges' big success this decade is his second year in the Mountain West, let's consider his second year at Michigan:
2010 (last year pre-Borges): 488 yds/game (Nat'l rank: 8)
2011 (first year): 404 yds/game (Nat'l rank: 42)
2012 (second year): 383 yds/game (Nat'l rank: 79)
To me, this is regression. (And this is putting aside 2013.) As I said, reasonable minds can disagree about Borges. Some people may think he is a very good OC. When I look at this career, including his times at Cal, Indiana, Auburn, and Michigan, I reach a different conclusion. Given that Hoke is an excellent recruiter, Mattison is a very good DC, and Brandon loves Hoke, it's likely we will have Borges (and maybe even Funk) for many years, with good (but not elite) teams and mediocre to good offenses at best. In other words, a very clean program (with likeable coaches) that has a lot of 9-4 years. This may remind you of another period in our history.
|1 year 3 weeks ago||Borges' past is filled with success?||
I think reasonable minds can disagree on that. (Supporters will point to his inaugural year at Auburn, in which he had a senior Jason Campbell and two first round RBs. Detractors will point to various other stops, and the regression his offenses experienced at every stop, including Michigan so far.)
|1 year 3 weeks ago||Experience v. coaching||
If experience were all that mattered, why did Wisconsin fire its new OL coach last year after two games (including a narrow victory over an FCS team), after which it went on to win the Big Ten championship? (Wisconsin's OL coach from 2006-2011 is now an OL coach in the NFL. Does anyone really think Funk could get such a job?)
Experience is of course preferred, but if that were all that mattered, Tony Gibson-coached upperclassmen would be world-beaters. I do not think that is how it works.
|1 year 4 weeks ago||Are we really young?||
I keep hearing how this is a young team, and we need to give Funk, etc., a couple more years. Our depth may be young, but let's look at the starters.
Tackles (Lewan and Schofeld) are seniors. LG is a redshirt sophomore; C is true sophomore; RG is redshirt freshman.
Tailback is a senior.
(WIth this line and tailback, under Borges and Funk, we are 118th in the country in tackles for loss on offense.)
Our QB is redshirt junior (I assume that the medical redshirt is official). Our top two receivers (Gallon, Dileo) are seniors. Jackson is a senior.
I don't think anyone here is panicking about the D because we have excellent coaches on that side of the ball and haven't had dismal numbers or performance, like we have on the O. But even there, the two Gordons, Black, and Washington are seniors.
In short, this is not the young team that people seem to think it is.
|1 year 4 weeks ago||True freshmen 3 star starters||
The point wasn't that Indiana is the epitome of what we should aim for -- we recruit at a much higher level, for instance. The point was that our old OL coach had to play two true freshmen all season last year, both of whom were 3 star talents with almost no other Big Ten offers. Yet those two guys received post-season accolades (e.g., All Big Ten honorable mentions, etc.). I just do not understand this mindset that it should take four or five years of Funk coaching 4 or 5 star linemen before they learn how to pull, etc.
|1 year 4 weeks ago||True freshmen playing||
What's your take on two true freshmen (3 star recruits no less) playing all year last year on the OL for Indiana under Coach Frey, and doing quite well?
|1 year 4 weeks ago||Funk and years of waiting||
Take a look at what Coach Frey did with two true freshmen 3 star guys at Indiana last year. If Coach Funk's name was Gibson, would we really be giving him a four year pass? If you cannot judge a coach by how his players play under him, why does anyone ever get hired or fired? Why do coaches move up the ranks, or get demoted? Hoke's a great recruiter, great for the program, love Coach Mattison, but I cannot see how someone can rationally defend the work Funk has done with the OL over the past two and a half years (and would suggest that we really need four or more years to really find out whether he can teach linemen how to pull).
|1 year 4 weeks ago||Coaching||
Funny what our old OL coach is doing with true freshmen, 3 star talent at Indiana. Why every position coach under Hoke gets a permanent pass is beyond me.
|1 year 4 weeks ago||Funk v. Frey||
What's depressing is that Coach Frey (now at Indiana) took two true freshman 3 star talents last year, started them all year as true freshman, and both won a bunch of accollades (Big Ten All-Freshman, All-Freshman All-America honorable mentions, etc.).
|1 year 4 weeks ago||Thinking about Indiana||
I think about Greg Frey.
Took one 3 star true freshman last year (#83 OG, with offers from Indiana and Illinois), who then received: "FoxSportsNext.com/Scout.com Freshman All-America first team member ... received honorable mention All-Big Ten from the league's coaches and media ... CollegeFootballNews.com Freshman All-American honorable mention ... ESPN.com Big Ten All-Freshman team ... 247Sports.com honorable mention All-Big Ten ... BTN.com honorable mention All-Big Ten Freshman team."
Took another 3 star true freshman TE (with offers solely from MAC schools and Indiana), who then received (as an OT): "honorable mention All-Big Ten from the league's coaches and media ... CollegeFootballNews.com Freshman All-American honorable mention ... ESPN.com and BTN.com Big Ten All-Freshman team ... 247Sports.com second team All-Big Ten."
Does anyone honestly believe we are getting that kind of production with the talent we have from our coaches on offense?
|1 year 20 weeks ago||One reason||
In ten years of head coaching experience, he hasn't produced a conference champion yet (in MAC for six years, MWC for two, B1G for two). Yes, ice cream, healed the Michigan family, amazing recruiter, etc., but conference championships are a pretty decent measuring stick.
|1 year 20 weeks ago||Hoke hasn't won a conference championship ever||
In his sixth year at Ball State, he took a 12th ranked (nationally) Ball State team to the MAC championship against a Turner Gil-coached 7-5 Buffalo team, and Ball State lost by 18. Ball State's last conference championship was in 1996 under Bill Lynch (later of Indiana).
|1 year 21 weeks ago||First round RBs||
Remember that the only time in the past decade plus that an Al Borges team won its conference was when he had two upper classmen first round draft pick RBs and a first round QB on the roster.
|1 year 43 weeks ago||Borges and WRs||
When high school WRs look at our offensive coordinator, what successful WRs do they think of? Did someone flourish under the Gerry DiNardo/Al Borges combo, and if so, does any high schooler know about it?
|1 year 44 weeks ago||No||
No one here -- even the RR defenders -- has said Casteel is "Mattison but good at coaching defense." Casteel had a pretty good track record at WVU This is his first year at Arizona, and they apparently were starting five walk-ons on defense at times this year.
Everyone here, including the RR defenders, loves Mattison.
What many folks don't love, however, is that we have gotten a WCO re-tread who has a history of regressing offenses at each of his stops. (Yes, we hired Gerry DiNardo's OC. Glad we saved that money and kept our Manball philosophy alive.) This was the first time in over forty years we had three games in which we didn't score a touchdown, if I remember correctly. And that was with a senior Denard Robinson, who holds many of the all-time leading Michigan offensive records.
Look at what RR's first year Arizona team did offensively, and then look at our slide in all offensive categories from 2010 to 2011 to 2012. If you do not understand why some of us still wish we had a RR offense (or a Sonny Dykes or Kliff Kingsbury or Chip Kelly, etc. offense), instead of Big Al's, I don't know what to tell you. By what metric is Al Borges doing well here and showing progression? By what metrics did he show progression at Auburn, Cal, Indiana?
Since you appear to like numbers, here are a few:
National Rank in Total Offense (Michigan)
National Rank in First Downs/Game (Michigan)
It appears we are sacrificing a lot just for a few quips at post-game press conferences. I suppose it all depends on what you value more.
|1 year 45 weeks ago||Everyone is better than Bielema?||
If we take off the maize colored glasses, under what objective criteria is Hoke a better coach than Bielema? I mean, Hoke seems like a better human being, but he hasn't even won a conference title yet (in any conference -- MAC, MWC, B1G). Bielema has done a pretty fine job at Wisconsin.
|1 year 46 weeks ago||Zen riddles and defending Borges' offense||
When we are ranked 81st in total offense, 99th in first downs, and had three games without scoring a touchdown (for the first time in over forty years), does there really need to be a name to our offense? Is that really hampering the ability of the teams we are facing?
|1 year 46 weeks ago||Trends that cause optimism||
Michigan's national rank in first downs per game: 22nd in 2010; 50th in 2011; 99th in 2012. I am as optimistic about our offense under Borges for a third year as I was about our defense under Greg Robinson for a potential third year. (Borges' 2004 year at Auburn gives me as much hope as Greg Robinson's 2004 year as DC for Rose Bowl winner Texas or Greg Davis's 2004 year as OC for Rose Bown winner Texas: almost none.)
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Potential good news?||
We're bringing back coach Frey?
Interesting fact #1: we were 13th in the nation in rushing in 2010; Arizona is 15th this year
Interesting fact #2: SDSU has gotten steadily better in rushing with the departure of Borges and Funk: 48th in 2010; 30th in 2011; 16th in 2012.
But let's blame the personnel. Obviously coaching only affects results on the defensive side of the ball. When it comes to offense, you need four or more years to judge results, right?
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Borges word of the day||
I thought it was "sinecure"?
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Agreed - Talent is there||
Amazing how at the beginning of the season, we are incredibly worried about the lack of talent on defense, yet the coaching from Mattison and Hoke always seems to turn underperforming players into overperforming players.
When the opposite happens on the OL -- highly ranked upperclassmen regress -- we start blaming the lack of talent, and say that Borges and Funk will need four years to get their players and system in place. Of course, Borges and Funk have never had success in year four anywhere, but let's not let facts and history get in the way of blind hope.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Borges as QB coach||
For the record, I am not a fan of Borges and have not been from the start. I believe the only "QB development" that any Borges defender can point to in the past decade is year one to two at SDSU with Ryan Lindley. It is worth noting that at SDSU, there was a separate QB coach, who had played under Don Coryell. Again, I don't think anything with Borges (e.g., adding a QB coach) is the answer, but I don't think many people realize he was not the person coaching Lindley. The record of his QBs at every other stop he has had the past decade plus give me further reason to doubt that we will see positive strides made at the QB spot or anywhere else on the offensive side of the ball.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Our offense versus ND going forward||
What gives you reason to believe that MIchigan's offense going forward will be as good or better than ND's?
I admit that I have not been a fan of the Borges hire from the start. Our total offense ranking has gone from 8th in 2010 to 42nd in 2011 to 81st in 2012. Having studied his past failures as places like Indiana, Cal, Auburn, etc., we are getting the regression that I expected.
Hoke admittedly has no role in our offense (a defensive version of RR), so we don't need to debate the Hoke v. Kelly angle (which would not favor Hoke).
I would love to have optimism about our offense, but see no basis for it. The fact that Borges doesn't recruit just makes the comparison to Greg Robinson uncanny. What logical reason is there to believe that we will be able to be as good or better than ND on offense with this offensive coaching staff?
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Moving up vs. being fired||
Surely you recognize the difference between moving up in positions (e.g., from ND to Florida to a very good NFL team) and bouncing around multiple locations, being fired, not coaching for a year, and ending up in the Moutain West after your last position was in the SEC, right? Greg Robinson also held a lot of positions, and has more success on his resume than Al Borges. There is a reason why Greg Robinson was not in demand when RR hired him. There is a reason why Al Borges was not in demand when Hoke hired him.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||It might show he got it||
Unfortunately, I don't think he does. When he said that Bellomy was prepared for Nebraska, I think Borges might have believed it. A good coach would have said, We didn't do enough to have our team ready -- that falls on us. When asked about whether he'd save anything for Ohio, he could have said something clever (e.g., If I did, would I tell you?) and actually have something ready for the Game, instead of showing every new idea in a blowout against Iowa. When asked if he would do anything different after the Alabama game, he might have recognized that his game plan did not work, and at least admit that. Instead, he wouldn't change a thing. Failure hasn't prevented him from being repeatedly hired, so there are no negative consequences in his mind. It wasn't that he was wrong; it's that reality refused to accept the correctness of his vision. I suppose the only comfort we can take is that he is employed in a field where stubborn refusal to adapt to reality only results in lost football games and secondary effects in terms of other people's professions. If he were in the military or medicine, the immediate negative repercussions of his approach would be much more dire.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Good fits at his other stops||
One of the biggest problems I have with Borges is his history. His history does not suggest that the offense here will show progress. His best success has been a first year in which he inherited senior first round RBs and a senior first round QB, all of whom someone else recruited and coached. The longer he stays, the worse his offense becomes. He cannot recruit or develop talent. Even at SDSU, he was not the QB coach who developed Lindley (who didn't break a 60% completion rate in the MWC with Borges' "system"). Unfortunately, he is our new Greg Robinson. The only arguments I seem to see being offered in his support could apply to all failing coordinators: (1) they are in the business, you are not, therefore your criticisms are invalid; (2) it is the lack of talent, not coaching (what Mattison continues to do with our shallow defensive corps put the lie to this); (3) give him multiple years to implement his system with his players (though he has apparently never been able to get in "his players" or "his system" anywhere except in the aforementioned first year at Auburn with senior first round picks Jason Campbell, Cadillac Williams and Ronnie Brown). Using the logic of Borges' defenders, it would be equally prudent to re-hire Greg Robinson. If anything, Greg Robinson has more bright spots on his long resume than Al Borges does.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||What he had to work with...||
Did the personnel at his disposal change significantly from the first half of the game to the second? Did something happen that forced his hand into running up the gut again and again without success in the second half?
Also, the defensive coaches took a D line that everyone rightfully worried about pre-season and worked wonders. Our O line continues to regress (even Lewan). Just as Mattison and Hoke might be good defensive coaches, maybe our regression on offense has something to do with our coaches.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||New favorite statistic to show offensive regression||
Relying on a couple big plays to keep things close, without the ability to move the ball.... I looked at our first downs per game today, and it's my new favorite statistic to show how much we are regressing under Borges. (I admit that I have never been a Borges fan; I wish we had brought in someone else to complement the excellent Mattison.)
2010: 22nd in country
2011: 50th in country
2012: 93rd in country
Being familiar with Borges' long history (we hired Gerry DiNardo's OC -- hooray!), I don't see this ending well.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||A new era for Michigan, ND, and OSU||
"This is Michigan"
Means offensive dark ages
Rivals do not lose
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Congrats to Denard.M||
My all-time favorite Wolverine. So sad to see him not out on the field (as RB, with Devin at QB) during the last drive against OSU as a senior. I realize he missed a block earlier, but taking him out of the game completely, except for telegraphed runs in which we removed Devin, was madness.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||We were beaten by a better team||
When we played Alabama, we were beaten by a better team.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||First downs||
After hearing last night how RR wants to score a certain number of first downs per game, and after they pointed out on the broadcast today at the half how most of our yardage came on two plays, I looked at our first down totals over the past couple years. The stats are even more depressing than our regression in total offense (yardage):
2010: 22nd in country in first downs/game
2011: 50th in country in first downs/game
2012: 93th in country in first downs/game
Al Borges is our new Greg Robinson.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||All is trending up?||
Unless we wish to gauge things by hopes and dreams (Borges plus a junior Shane Morris will be great!), the offense is not trending up. We have steadily and significantly declined from 2010 to 2011 to 2012 on offense -- be it total yards, first downs, etc. Al Borges might be more entertaining at press conferences than Greg Robinson, but his effect on the offense is similar to Gerg's on defense -- steady and significant regression.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||O-line and Coach Funk||
Serious question here -- doesn't this (Lewan's regression) cause you concern about Coach Funk? Obviously the interior line has been problematic all year, but with even Lewan regressing, I'm worried that we simply took a significant step back in coaching on the offensive side of the ball in 2011 (with an obviously significant step forward in coaching on the defensive side of the ball). Given that Mattison's staff continues to make something pretty good out of what we thought was nothing special, the results on the other side of the ball are very troubling to me. I'd be interested in other people's thoughts.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Personnel excuses||
Each year, we have pre-season worries about personnel on the defensive side of the ball. With very good coaching (Mattison), those worries/limitations are overcome.
The exact opposite happens on offense. As we regress further on offense, instead of looking to the coaches, we simply start blaming the players (many who had success prior years).
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Bona fides||
Apparently, to some posters, the only person smart enough to assess Al Borges and the "progression" he has made with this offense is a former pizza CEO. Since you are not a former pizza CEO, your mention of our regression in all relevant offensive areas over the past two years is meaningless. Your discussion of Al Borges' failures over the past decade plus is superfluous. It is affront to the tradition of this great program that you might point out we are now 93rd in the country in first downs, and 67th in total offense. It strains credulity to legitimately query why it always seems that Mattison is able to get so much out of players and positions we have concerns about pre-season, while the offense shows new problem areas (which should be attributed to talent, despite being in the program for years). In other words, please stop thinking -- the pizza guy has this covered.
P.S. Please change excellerate to accelerate, and I will sign.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Beating USC||
Of course, a Michigan coach has beaten USC recently -- unfortunately, it was after he had been fired by Michigan. I admit that I sometimes watch Arizona just to see what their offense does. There was an interesting point made last night -- RR has a goal of how many first downs he wants in a game. I had never focused on that before. (I've seen our regression in terms of total yards, etc.) I just looked -- we were 22nd in 2010, 50th in 2011, and are now 93rd in 2012. Al Borges is our Greg Robinson. I hope we can put a competent OC together with Mattison, who won't be here forever.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||Criticism of GERG, Tony Gibson, Al Borges, Darrell Funk||
There was plenty of criticism of Greg Robinson during the RR era, with Dave Brandon ultimately deriding even our wins in shootouts, like the Illinois game. Rightfully so -- we had a putrid defense. This is despite the fact that Greg Robinson has some achievements on his resume, like two Super Bowl rings and a Rose Bowl win.
Now, we have hired an OC that washed out after his time in the SEC, has never lasted anywhere, whose QBs have shown largely shown steady regression and an inability to crack 60% completion rates (because he believes in very high risk, high reward vertical passing). We haven't fully regressed yet, but we're getting there. We've gone from 8th in the country in total offense in 2010 to 42nd in 2011 to 67th in 2012. Al Borges is the offensive Greg Robinson. Yes, he has a few nice things on this resume, like Greg Robinson. But there is a reason why Greg Robinson was not in demand when RR hired him. (RR needed someone cheap, and the person coming in had to be okay with little stability.) There is a reason why Al Borges has bounced around, including not working for a year after being let go from Auburn, and ultimately ending up in the Mountain West. We don't need to overthink this. It's like investing in companies that disappoint because they have to turn around. No, they don't. If we want to succeed on offense, we should invest in coaches that have shown a consistent ability to achieve success in college football in the recent past. (The game has changed since the '90s.) That will cost us more than Borges costs us. Also, Hoke/Brandon believe that imposing your will on offense is critical -- e.g., Hoke's comments regarding defenses being soft if they see spread offense in practice. I really wish that 1950's mindset would die. Were Urban Meyer's defenses at Florida soft? Will his defenses at OSU be soft?
Hoke does not know anything about offense. That's fine. But bring in an OC who does, fergodsakes.
|1 year 47 weeks ago||A career of failure and regression||
He has failed everywhere he went. Notice how when OSU noticed we were playing soft on the corners, they would throw quick passes for 5-9 yard gains -- i.e., taking what the defense is giving you. We failed at running up the middle all day, but Borges/Hoke/Brandon think Michigan football/MANBALL is about imposing your will. Doing the same thing over and over again when it fails every time is insanity, especially when there are other options. Dave Brandon got the OC he deserved, and he is seeing the results. Someone should let him know when his next marketing meeting is over that OSU is not going to be going back to an interim coach anytime soon, and though we have added Maryland and Rutgers to the B1G, this isn't the MWC. We can do better than an OC that has bounced around for two decades and ended up at SDSU.
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Facts and evidence||
Earlier in the thread, you say (in response to Borges criticism): don't let facts and evidence get in the way of good internet spleen. Now you claim that Michigan was top 20 in yard and points per game last year. With even a little research, you would know that that is false.
2010 (RR): 488.7 Yards/game -- 8th in nation
2011 (Borges): 404.7 Yards/game -- 42nd in nation
2012 (Borges): 378.1 Yards/game -- 82nd in nation
We also were not top 20 in points per game last year.
The overwhelming facts and evidence of Borges' long career show failure and regression. Is it perfectly linear regression? Of course not. But his offenses have by and large not shown improvement at his various stops this century, be it in the Pac-10 (Cal), Big Ten (Indiana), or SEC (Auburn). So we are left with the "progression" of the 2010 Mountain West team in which a NFL-drafted QB managed to complete 57% of his passes. Furthermore, the QB of that team (Ryan Lindley) was coached by SDSU's QB coach, Brian Sipe (who studied under Don Coryell himself). Based on the historical evidence we have, the likelihood that Borges will be able to develop a successful offense in the Big Ten and develop a QB who will be able to throw the very high risk, high reward long balls with slow developing plays that Borges embraces is just not very high. There is a reason why so many other teams on the college and pro level have embraced high-percentage plays and up-tempo offenses. And there's a reason Nick Saban is worried about those kinds of offenses (complaining that teams shouldn't be able to play that fast), and not worried at all about the offense Borges would like to create.
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Unless three first round pick seniors (1 QB, 2 RBs) transfer...||
Unless we are blessed with transfers of three first round picks who happen to be seniors (and were thus developed by a different staff) at QB (like, for instance, Jason Campbell) and RB (Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams), we will never have the personnel in which Borges has achieved success in a big six conference this century. I am not optimistic that we will be getting those three transfers any time soon.
Meanwhile, when Holgerson started at West Virginia, he was able to use that personnel pretty well. RR, in his first year at Arizona (which won all of four games last year), has used that personnel to go 5-3 so far and put up 39 points on a ranked USC team, 59 points on a ranked Wisconsin team, 35 points on a ranked Oregon State team, and 48 points on a ranked Stanford team. (That offense is now ranked 4th in the country in yards per game and 20th in points per game.) Meanwhile, our offense statistically regressed last year (80 fewer yards per game, for one), and has now taken regressed further. There is no reason to expect anything but further regression next year. Borges supporters say we should be patient for year 4. Yet the only place at which he has lasted four years this century reveals a story of consistent regression. (Year one he enjoyed the three senior first round picks in the backfield.) I am interested to hear of other major programs who are moving to a WCO and achieving success.
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Borges is omniscient||
What is interesting to me is that given Borges' omniscience, and the fact that he called the Alabama game perfectly (wouldn't change a thing), and had Bellomy prepared mentally and physically (no question), the teams that he coaches always seem to have so much execution and talent regression. I mean, even regression in the two years at Indiana under Gerry DiNardo. He must be the most unlucky person on the planet, given his prowess at playcalling and coaching, to be forced with the failure and regression of his offenses. It's like all of the players and fate are conspiring against him. Everywhere he goes, he keeps getting it right, and the kids keep getting it wrong -- he's the anti-John L. Smith (MSU rant).
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Indiana||
I haven't watched them play, but they put up 30 against Navy, 27 against Michigan State, 39 against Ball State (in the loss you mention), and 49 against Ohio State. Does Indiana have more talent than Michigan on offense? Do they have more highly recruited and talented OL than we do? I find that hard to believe. But they do have our former OL coach, and they likely have better coaching in general on offense. Moreover, Indiana is putting up with these numbers starting a true freshman at QB. Yet people are saying that years of QB regression or stagnation are excusable in Borges' offense, and we should wait until a chosen one receives years of tutelage in his arcane system before we evaluate. I think the years of failure and regression at Borges' previous stops bode ill for us, and we are seeing ample evidence of that right now. We can dance around it, and make excuses, and say things like: he's been doing this for year -- did he forget how to coach? I would say this our current regression is consistent with his previous coaching stints, and Greg Robinson had far more ammunition to make the argument that previous successes (four Rose Bowl wins, two Super Bowl wins) should drown out recent failures.
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Borges' WCO||
How many college teams in major divisions in the past decade have had success with an "Air Coryell"/vertical offense that you think Borges wants to implement? (I assume you will grant me that Borges' 2001 Cal team, his 2002 and 2003 Indiana teams, and his Auburn teams (putting aside the first year, inherited team with seniors Jason Campbell, Ronnie Brown, and Cadillac Williams) do not qualify as successes.) I just do not see the model we are aiming for, or the reason why his offense will show progression here, when it has shown regression at every other stop. But I'm interested in your take on WCOs, as it obvious that Hoke/Brandon would rather eat glass than admit that a spread offense could be "Michigan football."
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Borges needing five years||
I understand your concern, but there seems to be little or no factual support for the idea that Borges' offenses at a location improve over time as he gets "WCO personnel" into the program (and they start the long learning process that the WCO apparently involves). In the past decade, he lasted one year at Cal (everyone was fired), two years under Gerry DiNardo at Indiana (in which the team regressed from 3-9 to 2-10 and the offense regressed from 258 points to 178), four years at Auburn (with steady regression, the pinnacle being his first year, in which he inherited a team with a first round pick senior QB and two first round pick senior RBs), and two years in the Mountain West (with a year of unemployment). Even if we are going to swear off spread offenses, and presumably Run and Shoot offenses, can we not find an OC who offers the style that Hoke/Brandon want who has had success implementing it at other schools?
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Against a good D||
What does a good D have to do with Nebraska this year? Other than their success defeating the Borges WCO No Bubble Screen Everyone Was Prepared I Wouldn't Do Anything Different Offense (TM; (c) 1998), Nebraska has allowed Ohio State to put up 63, Wisconsin 27, Northwestern 28, UCLA 36, and Southern Miss 20. Southern Miss is 0-8, in Conference USA, and their third highest point total this year is against Nebraska. Even Rice held Southern Miss to fewer points than Nebraska did.
Our offense, like nearly all Al Borges offenses throughout his career, is regressing. Even from his first year under Gerry DiNardo at Indiana (2002 -- 3-9 record, 258 points of offense) to his second (2003 -- 2-10 record, 178 points of offense), his offense regressed. I do not see anything in his long history to suggest that his offense will improve -- the great weight of history suggests strongly the exact opposite. Heck, Greg Robinson had more impressive historical successes than Borges.
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Yes||
Yes, it bothers me. The inability to move quickly (call it a two-minute drill, but even down two scores with 7 minutes left in more than one game, we cannot even manage a slighly above-our-average temp), the burning of a timeout near the beginning of each game (this time it came slightly later than usual), the wasted timeouts at the end of the half. Nearly everything about our offense is "not optimal."
If we somehow end up with a first round pick at QB (say, Jason Campbell) and two first round picks at RB (Ronnie Brown and Cadillac Williams), and they develop under another staff, and then Borges "coaches" them as seniors, then I think we have a chance to be competitive at an elite level. Unfortunately, I don't see that happening in the next fifty years.
|1 year 50 weeks ago||YPG||
80 yards less per game is equivalent? Hmmmm.
Borges' teams regress. That is what they do. His high water marks in this century include his first year at Auburn, in which he inherited (didn't develop) a first round QB, two first round RBs, etc. (afterward, regressiona and then unemployment); and arguably his year 2 in the Mountain West, in which he developed his QB into achieving a 57% completion rate. Those are his successes. Greg Robinson's also long career has far more highlights than Borges'.
|1 year 50 weeks ago||QB development||
Isn't the bigger problem that Borges' "system" takes years to implement, and he hasn't shown the ability in the 21st century of developing a QB? As I understand it, his supporters point to (a) the 2004 Auburn team, in which Borges inherited a first round QB, two first round RBs (!), and various other NFL talent; and (b) the 2010 Mountain West SDSU team, in which Lindley, coached by Borges, managed to complete 57% of his passes. Compare that to, for instance, Texas A&M this year. Consensus three-star prospect and redshirt freshman Johnny Manziel is completing 64% of his passes with a 16 to 6 TD to INT ratio. I don't see the reason why years 3 through 5 of Borges will be any different at Michigan than it was at his other stops: regression and failure (though many places he never lasted to year three).
It's the same thing with this board's newfound claim that our OL isn't very good, and therefore isn't very talented. Our former OL coach is now at Indiana. Somehow they are managing to put up 27 points on Michigan State, 29 on Northwestern, 49 on Ohio State. Does anyone think that Indiana has recruited more talent than Michigan? We've seen what good coaching does with the same players on the defensive side of the ball, and are willing to (rightfully) praise Mattison for the work he has done. And it is logical to expect that -- he has had success at the highest level in the past and is highly sought. But now that we are experiencing regression with the same players on offense, a regression that most of Borges' teams have experienced throughout his tenure, why can we not recognize that Borges has not had consistent success, much less at the highest level, and his system isn't being implemented at any of the elite programs? The New England Patriots are not talking to Borges to learn how to run our incompetent two minute drill or painfully slow developing plays.
What is even more depressing is that we might wait until 2015 to see any change in the offensive coaching. Denard helps mask Borges the rest of this year. Next year will likely be a train wreck, but Borges will get a pass -- almost no one will expect Borges to have developed Bellomy or Gardner, and Morris will only be a true freshman. There will be some natural bounce in 2014 -- will that get Borges a fifth year?
|1 year 50 weeks ago||No one is arguing for a 3-3-5||
Yes, we all love Mattison's defense. Is it a moral imperative that we must tie a great defense to a terrible offense? Given that the Humme/Leach/Holgerson/et al. offense can be implemented in weeks (not 3 to 4 years), and show great success quickly, and the same to some extent with respect to spread teams like Arizona (coming off a 4 win season, now putting up huge points on USC, Washington, Ok. State, and Stanford), might we want to think about something other than Al Borges, who hasn't established a consistent, successful offense anywhere in more than a decade? What are we hoping for -- his accomplishments in year 2 at Indiana? Year 3 at Auburn? Year 4 at Auburn? Year 1 at Cal (there was no year 2, etc.)? Which of these is the thing we hope will occur?
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Our OL||
Either Borges or Funk deserve most of the blame for our OL not performing. Look at what our former OL coach has accomplished with Indiana's OL. Are you telling me that he has more to work with at Indiana than we have here at Michigan? Just as our supposedly poor defensive players turned around quickly with competent/very good coaching, it is possible for things to change the other way. I don't know why people simply want to give Borges and the offensive assistants all a pass, because of one positive season in the Mountain West (against abysmal competition), or a 2004 Auburn team with first round picks in the complete backfield.
|1 year 50 weeks ago||Regression is the norm||
If you look at the Borges' results at his various stops over the past decade, regression or failure is the norm. Cal, Indiana, even Auburn -- his best year was the first, in which he inherited a first round pick at QB, two first round picks at RB, etc., etc. From there, downhill. To every person who is saying it takes 3 or 4 years for Borges to get his system in place, please name a place where that has occurred. Borges' history is one of consistent regression. (And Lindley's 57% completion rate 'success' is, well -- if that's a success to you, and you think we will get W-L results like that in the Big Ten instead of the Mountain West, good luck.)
|1 year 51 weeks ago||QB regression||
Actually, we have a much larger sample size to look at. How did he do in years 2 - 4 at Auburn -- any QB progression? Two years at Indiana -- any QB progression? One year at Cal (canned before he should show any regression). Even in his second year in the Mountain West (where he landed after the SEC), his pro-caliber QB didn't muster a 58% completion rate. Yes, he has been in the football community a long time. But he has not been very successful, and his QBs and teams have not shown progression during his stints. Greg Robinson had two Super Bowls and a college national championship on his resume. Does that mean we could not criticize his defenses? I just don't see why people hope for something different from Borges when his history tells us he is not going to do well here long-term.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Position coaches||
Yes, position coaches should be evaluated and rewarded if they are good, and let go if they are not. This seemed like a fairly constant theme during the RR years. I don't seem why all of the assistants we brought over from San Diego State and/or Ball State should get a lifetime pass. We can see what good coaching has done with a ragtag group on defense -- the discipline, coordination, sound fundamentals, employed in a scheme that provides them a good opportunity for success. Not sure what positives we are seeing from the coaches on the other side of the ball.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Unemployed offensive coordinators||
All of us had at least as much OC work during 2008 as Al Borges (after his run at Auburn).
And plenty of posters have lasted here on this blog longer than Al has lasted at any job in the past two decades.
But this truly has become like Hollywood. It doesn't matter if you've directed 10 crappy movies; if you once made one that did fairly well, and other people have hired you, then you must not be that bad. Can I get a Greg Robinson amen?
|1 year 51 weeks ago||It seems he never has the right players||
Other than his first year at Auburn, when he inherited a first round pick at QB and two first round picks at RBs, he has a decade and more of failure with (the wrong) players. Perhaps instead of waiting for a once in a generation talent windfall that Borges might not screw up, we could find an OC who has not regressed or failed at every job he has had? Funny how Holgerson in year one at West Virginia, RR at Arizona, etc., etc., are able to show good first years (and showed progression in offense at their former stops), and Al seems to get a pass as we wait for the next Jason Williams, Cadillac Williams, and Ronnie Brown trio to show up so we can witness the Gulf Coast Offense. Why don't we go after Gerry DiNardo, one of Al Borges' bosses in his many and varied journeyman career, while we are at it? Surely with the right players Gerry DiNardo would have had success.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||RR's Wildcats||
They also put 48 points on Stanford, 59 on Oklahoma State, 35 on Oregon State, etc. (besides putting 38 on and beating USC, which Michigan hasn't done ...). Anyone who has watched RR's first year offense in Arizona and our second year offense with Borges can only weap for our team (and post negative posts, like I do).
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Does football still require the part where you have the ball||
And try to score points? Do we still have the laser screen hating, WCO maestro in our booth? Then yes. Sad as it to see it, considering what we have seen Denard, Roundtree, Lewan, etc. do in more capable hands.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Borges' sort of talented||
Agreed, and unfortunately, I think the only time in the past decade that Borges has managed to "coach" a QB to a 60+% completion rate was when he inherited two first round draft picks at RB and a first round draft pick at QB. Should that occur at Michigan,yes, Borges might be able to not screw that up. How often, though, can we expect to have a full backfield of first round picks, and might we want a coach who can succeed with slightly less than once in a decade (or more) talent? Somehow, the talent he had at Cal, Indiana, the rest of his years at Auburn, etc., etc. were not sufficiently his type of talent. I don't see how this works out well for us.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Al and pro-style passers||
You don't need to wait to see Al fail with pro-style passers. Just look at his track record.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Please, God, no.||
Instead of going to Jurassic Park and looking for some Paleolithic football DNA to re-animate, can we hire an OC who runs a modern offense and has had recent success? Someone from the Mumme/Leach/Holgerson/Dykes/et al. tree?
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Genius||
This is what I do not understand. Given his awful record of regression/failure, why do people think Borges is some sort of "offensive genius"? I keep posting his record of failure and regression, going back to Gerry DiNardo's teams, among others. Heck, Greg Robinson has a better resume.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Stud RBs, etc.||
If history is a guide, if we manage to obtain two first round RBs and a first round QB, and those players develop under a different OC, Borges will then be able to call one season's worth of games before regressing again.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Regression||
Considering your user name, I would have thought you would have researched Al's history. It is the story of regression:
UCLA - 5 years - regression (peak was year two or three)
Cal - 1 year - whole staff fired
Indiana - 2 years under Gerry DiNardo (awful)
Auburn - 4 years - regression (peak was year one, with first round draft picks QB Jason Campbell, RB Ronnie Brown, and RB Cadillac Williams on roster; steady regression after year one)
2008 - unemployed
Even Ryan Lindley at San Diego State never reached a 58% completion rate under Borges.
History isn't a perfect guide to the future, but why should we be expecting anything but regression under Borges?
|1 year 51 weeks ago||OL drop-off||
To what do you attribute the regression in OL play? This is another very disconcerting development.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Overachieving on defense||
I don't think it is a coincidence that great, highly sought out coaches like Mattison turn out to lead parts of the team that overachieve. And, unfortunately, I don't see any reason to think Borges' offense will turn out any different than his other, underachieving offenses.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Rich Rod||
He has taken an unranked Arizona team that won 3 games last year, and put up 39 points against USC in a win (eclipsing all of the points Lloyd Carr's teams put up against USC in two Rose Bowls), and 48 against Stanford in his first season. Make-shift O-line? Are you telling me that Michigan's O-line is worse than the OL of Southern Miss, Northwestern, etc. (all of whom had more offensive success against Nebraska)? A good OC with our talent, including the probably the best dual threat QB to ever play college football, could do so much. There is a reason (actually, many reasons) why other college football teams are not trying to replicate the WCO of Al Borges.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||60+% completion rate||
I won't bother to pull all the numbers like I have in the past, but Borges' QBs have more often than not failed to achieve 60%. It somewhat feels like Hollywood, where even though a director's movies have done poorly for the most part, the fact that others have hired him allows him to keep getting hired.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Exactly||
Even 0-8 Southern Miss put up 20 points on Nebraska. We weren't on pace for that, even with Denard. My snowflake: look at Borges' history. His offenses have regressed at every stop, and he has never sustained success anywhere. He was unemployed for a year, and landed in the Mountain West after being in the SEC. There's a reason why he isn't highly pursued, versus Mattison, for example. And considering Meyer's success at each stop and the fact that his team (in his first year) hung 60 on Nebraska, I am very concerned if the Brandon/Hoke long-term plan is to win 12-10 slugfests (with a slow motion two-minute drill) as a matter of course.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||I hope you are wrong about Hoke||
I was very concerned when he came in, based on his sub-.500 record, etc. I hope he can be a good CEO type coach, with excellent coordinators doing their job. Everything I have seen has confirmed my fears about Borges. Landing Mattison was a coup. I hope Hoke and Brandon have the good sense to abandon Borges before too much damage is done (no later after year four?), and I hope Hoke can be a good CEO type coach.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Regression||
Considering the regression that QBs and offenses enjoy under Borges (at least, at all of his previous stops), not sure that three 4 star players would matter.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Your snowflake||
And what did you see with Denard in that would suggest to you we would even put 20 points on Nebraska, like the 0-8 Southern Miss team did earlier this year (the worst offensive showing against Nebraksa before our West Coast Offense came calling)?
Anyone who has looked at his history realizes that Borges is the weak link in the hiring we did post-RR. Why is Mattison the highest paid coordinator in the Big Ten? He's excellent, and good programs want him. Why has Borges never lasted long at any stop, with a move from the SEC to unemployment for a year to the Mountain West? They are who we thought they were
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Year 5||
Borges has never made it to year 5. Would love if Hoke cut the slow bleed short, but he'll probably not make the move any earlier. The question is whether Brandon opens the checkbook and is open to bringing in someone who is not a "Michigan Man."
|1 year 51 weeks ago||OL blocking||
Don't you think our offensive coaches should be responsible for the regression in the OL? We recognize the positive effects of Mattison and Hoke on the DL and D, yet we give Borges and his crew a pass as we regress further and further on offense. To make sure this post is voted as Flamebait, which all criticism of Borges seems to get, take a look what the Arizona offense (off a 3 win season) did to USC today. Nebraska hasn't allowed fewer than 20 points to a I-A team all year (and that was to an 0-8 team). Because Borges has been a coordinator for a long time (e.g., for Gerry DiNardo -- most people forget), people seem to think he is good. He has never lasted at any stop.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Versus USC||
RR's first year, unranked Arizona team just put up 39 points on and beat USC (which beats our total output in our two Rose Bowl losses to USC under Carr with ranked teams) and you still feel the need to hate? Maybe Arizona can pine for Al Borges, and a two minute drill that gets off three or four WCO plays.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Iowa's two minute drill||
Much like Chip Kelly and Brian Belichick sharing notes in the offseason, I have to believe Iowa's coaches came to Ann Arbor in the offseason for pointers.
|1 year 51 weeks ago||Not that OT||
Looking ahead, Borges has never been at one place more than 4 years. I've seen some posters suggest that we could "bring home" Loeffler. I'd love to think we could start looking outside the pool of individuals with previous ties to Michigan, but I think Brandon would give an OC with Michigan ties significant preference.
|1 year 52 weeks ago||Clock management and tempo||
For those on the board who simply will not entertain a criticism about Borges' playcalling, the WCO, etc. -- does his clock management really seem up to snuff? How about our ability to get plays off in a rapid fashion when we need to (late in the game today, down two scores against ND)? I'm watching Arizona put up 52 points on Washington (which held USC to 24 points last week) right now. Even when we absolutely need to move quickly, we cannot (under Borges) move as quickly as AZ does as a matter of course. (Feel free to add other modern offenses if the RR connection makes you see red.) I understand Borges and Hoke want to be a ball control offense, etc., but when we need to move the ball quickly, what is the advantage of being unable to get plays in quickly? And as an aside, doesn't the fact the Patriots are interested in what Oregon is doing (in terms of up-tempo, quick plays), and that Saban is complaining about it suggest that it might be a good idea to learn how to play quickly at times?
|2 years 1 week ago||Great article||
Everyone should read this article.
Putting aside the desirability of the WCO, one of my biggest concerns coming from the Notre Dame game was our inability to speed up in the fourth quarter when we were down two scores. From Saban's comments about the speed of play, to New England's no-huddle and Belichick's meeting with Chip Kelly, to the success of Oregon, to teams like West Virginia, Baylor, etc. (Mike Leach coaching tree), to even RR at Arizona now (48 points on Stanford with record pass attempts and pass completions in a Pac12 game), it seems clear that the ability to move quickly on offense and to limit defenses from substituting and getting into complex schemes is a significant advantage. I don't get the sense that Borges recognizes this or can coach it well.
|2 years 1 week ago||RR and records||
Pretty surprised to see that in RR's sixth game at Arizona, RR's QB just set the single game PAC 12 record for attempts (69) and completions (45), completing 65% of his passes for 491 passing yards against Stanford. Arizone put up 48 points as a team against a Stanford team that held Barkley et al. to 14 points and 254 yards through the air. Like you said, he has his faults, but some of the stuff he does with offense is pretty special.
|2 years 2 weeks ago||Talent, etc.||
Is LSU's offense really something to emulate? And yes, USC and Alabama have had success using old school, pro-style offense approaches. Do you think we will be able to consistently recruit at Michigan the level of talent of the top two programs in the country -- one located in Los Angeles and the dominant program in Southern California and the other a traditional power in the South, with multiple recent national championships, a coach who talks about how his AD, and the school president, etc., etc. recruit, and that will medically redshirt any four star talent that doesn't pan out? I would rather adopt an offense that is not so dependent on having a top 3 recruiting class year in and year out.
|2 years 2 weeks ago||Five years||
I realize that I will be negged, etc., but Borges has never lasted five years at any place, and his offenses have generally (note my use of the modifier, though I realize that this will still lead to vitriol) regressed during his tenures at various places.
And while I will be further negged, etc., for anyone who has watched West Virginia, Baylor, etc. (amazing the success of the Leach coaching tree) recently, it's very difficult, if not impossible, to see the advantage of Michigan trying to win on a national level with Borges's WCO in modern college football.
|2 years 2 weeks ago||We won't commit theft||
Well, we won't rob defenses of these opportunities. Even down two scores with five minutes left, we will huddle and slowly proceed to our next play. (Yes, the tempo from the Notre Dame game is still killing me.)
|2 years 2 weeks ago||This is too funny||
Arizona puts up 35 points and 545 yards on Oregon State, in their 4th game under RR. (Arizona was 4-8 last year.) Wisconsin put up 7 points and 207 yards on Oregon State this year. And we're moving to that MANBALL, Wisconsin, 1990s UCLA offense with Borges, right? (Not the 2002-2003 Borges Indiana offense, or the 2005-07 Borges Auburn offense, etc., etc.) Watching the good offensive teams today, did any West Coast offenses stand out to you?
|2 years 2 weeks ago||Modern offenses||
Watching WVA and Baylor earlier, and Arizona and Orgeon State tonight, is anyone else depressed at the thought that we simply will not have a modern offense with Borges? The tempo, high efficiency passing (Lindley didn't complete 60% of his passes; neither did McNown his senior year; add in the Indiana QBs and steady decline at Auburn), etc. How many years are sufficient to judge his performance at Michigan? If we have four years of steadily declining offensive results, will we bring in someone new, and would Hoke/Brandon hire someone without Michigan ties? Would we ever experiment with someone like a Holgerson/Art Briles/ Sonny Dykes/ Leach, or would we hire someone who believes in MANBALL (see Hoke's comment about a spread offense hurting the defense who practices against them)? Who are the good up and coming OCs having success with that type of style (if they exist)?
|2 years 3 weeks ago||Borges defenders||
Why do none of the Borges defenders here address the points being made? Three of his four years at Auburn showed regression, not progression. Indiana was a dumpster fire. Even McNown regressed as a senior (nearly doubling his interceptions), and Lindley never came close to completing 60% of his passes.
The Denver Broncos won the Super Bowl in 1998 and 1999 and Texas won the 2005 Rose Bowl with Greg Robinson as DC. Therefore Greg Robinson is infallible and must succeed once he gets his guys in place, right? It's not like Al Borges is a Lloyd Carr man -- I do not see why he gets the free pass.
|2 years 3 weeks ago||Quantum leaps?||
Congratulations on your sophisticated analysis, which apparently consists of calling someone "butt-hurt." What was Lindley's completion percentage under Borges? Did it ever break 60%? (Answer: No.) Don't let facts get in your way. How much "quantum improvement in performance, year over year" did McNown show under Borges? His interceptions nearly doubled from his junior to senior year (6 to 11), and his completion percentage fell back to 58 percent. And this is the one, 15 year old astounding success (the improvement from sophomore McNown to junior McNown) that you are hanging your hat on? How did his QBs at Indiana, for example, do? (Those teams under Gerry DiNardo went 3-9 and then 2-10. Don't even think about a 60 percent completion rate.) I suppose those were successes as well?
|2 years 3 weeks ago||The Borges touch||
Look at the regression made by the three year starter at Auburn under Borges' tutelage. Senior year numbers: under 60% completion, 9:13 TD:INT ratio (worse year in every category). Considering that the schools he has coached at in his 20+ year career of bouncing around generally get worse under his watch, why are Hoke fans thinking Borges will make things better? You don't get promoted from the SEC to a year of not coaching to the Mountain West. We didn't pay big bucks to lure away a successful coordinator, like we did with Mattison.