the just released schedules were a flat-out statement that the B10 doesn't believe SOS will matter in playoff selection
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|1 year 28 weeks ago||Time to call this||
Time to call this multi-faceted offense what it is -- the SmorgasBorges Offense.
|1 year 30 weeks ago||Maybe a little OT...||
But please stick with me here. Kudos to John Bacon for writing this book and exploring/exposing the details of Michigan's last three years under RR. I've read some excerpts and I definitely look forward to reading the whole thing. Count me among those who was a huge RR supporter who reluctantly realized he would never be able to succeed and ultimately had to go, due to his own flaws as well as those of the program and the Michigan Family.
But there is a bigger cultural picture to look at here, too. From the very beginning I saw RR's hire as a grand litmus test not simply for U-M football, but for the state of Michigan and the Midwest's approach to progress, innovation, and the kind of change needed to revitalize a stagnant region. Everyone knows RR represented a radical departure from the U-M norm, but everyone also seems to forget about the slight but steady decline that was hurting the program for years prior to his hire; we wanted to restore the glory. But all the institutional forces that had so much invested in the traditions of the program never embraced the change and gnawed away at RR's ability to succeed. Yes, we wanted success, but we wanted success that validated our old vision instead of being the result of a new one. And without getting way OT, parallels abound for the state and for the Midwest.
That is in part why I wanted so badly for RR to succeed. If U-M could embrace change in its football program, maybe the state could embrace the change needed to revitalize itself. Now we have a book that will tell you how big a mistake that kind of thinking was.
Today, under Brady Hoke I firmly believe U-M is on the right path to reach excellence again. And maybe Hoke's approach of melding traditions with new practices is the template for revitalizing the state, too.
If this doesn't fit here, please forgive me.
|2 years 24 weeks ago||Geez!||
I try to bring a little reason into the discussion without offering any opinion, and a narrow interpretation of the "rules" earns me a negging.
I sincerely apologize. There was no intent to incite or inflame, only inform.
|2 years 24 weeks ago||Logic says Rich Rod is staying||
It's time for all evaluation and speculation on Rich Rod's status to end. Leaving my own personal opinion out of the mix, anyone who thinks this process through has to come to the conclusion that he's staying.
Once Dave Brandon said that he would evaluate the coaching situation after the bowl game, he was making the implied admission that at a minimum RR was staying through 2011. If U-M were making a change at head coach, RR would've been fired already. Just like Randy Shannon at Miami.
There's no benefit in keeping RR until the bowl game, only to axe him afterwards. There's only downside to that -- scrambling to get a coach and assistants in ASAP, recruits scrambling to find new schools. If RR was going, Brandon would've let him go very shortly after The Game, begun whatever "official" coaching search he was going to start, gotten his under-the-table agreement that Harbaugh was coming in, and would be planning the press conference immediately following whatever New Year's Day bowl Stanford goes to.
We can continue to spew our thoughts pro and con on RR, but logic tells me the decision has already been made.
|2 years 24 weeks ago||Is it me?||
I live outside of Michigan but proudly maintain my Michigan Fan Card(tm). Not sure if it's me or not, but I sense that the Fire Rich Rod sentiment is strongest in the state of Michigan, and less so with the Michigan Diaspora. Is this true?
If it is, my guess is that the local media has been effective in its characterizations of the Rich Rod regime, and Sparty's success under Dantonio has become really grating. I don't have any exposure to either.
|2 years 24 weeks ago||I totally agree.||
When looking at the job Rich Rod has had to do so far at U-M, why don't people look at what could've been the alternative beginning in 2008? And I don't mean the Les Miles alternative, I mean the Lloyd Carr Coaching Tree alternative.
From my perspective U-M has been on a slow decline since 2001, and that decline accelerated in 2005, the 2006 season notwithstanding. If U-M had hired a coach steeped in the traditions of the previous era, I'd be willing to bet we would've had an overall record eerily similar to what we've had since '08 -- and without a hint or glimmer of hope for progress over the next half decade.
Do people simply forget the frustration of 2004-2007? Sure, Lloyd's teams won more games during that period than Rich Rod has, but those teams hit their ceiling and that ceiling was ever so steadily pushing downward. This year's team was nowhere close to its ceiling, has been able to get back into the bowl mix and is set up for huge success in 2011 and beyond.
I choose hope, not overreaction.
|2 years 30 weeks ago||Is that really true?||
This is an honest-to-goodness question. When you put inexperienced and unprepared young players out on the field before they're ready, does it stunt their future growth? Does a DB who gets torched because he doesn't know which way is up actually recover to be competent or even good, or is he scarred for life because of the experience?
I have thoughts about players like a young Rick Ankiel not being able to keep his pitches even remotely near home plate, and how he had to remake his entire baseball career from scratch.
I honestly wonder if whether throwing freshman DBs to the wolves hurts their ability to develop to their full potential. If not, then I would agree that they'll be fine. If so, then our secondary is in for even more trouble in ensuing years.
It sounds like a MgoBlog research project -- what relevance does poor freshman year performance have on future individual development?
|2 years 32 weeks ago||Chappelbombings will occur...||
But it doesn't mean our season is lost by any stretch, as long as the offense keeps Denarding.
I did a stats check of BCS conference teams over the last five years that gave up 400+ ypg in total defense. There were 56 teams since 2005 that fit the bill. Of those, 19 finished .500 or better. Furthermore, 9 finished with 8 or more wins:
2009 Arkansas (8-5)
2009 Stanford (8-5)
2008 Oklahoma State (9-4)
2008 Missouri (10-4)
2007 Tennessee (10-4)
2006 Purdue (8-6)
2005 Wisconsin (10-3)
2005 UCLA (10-2)
What distinguished those teams? A high-powered offense, of course. Seven of the nine had offenses ranked in the top third nationally (2007 Tennessee and 2005 Wisconsin missed the cut). Two of the nine had unstoppable spread offenses that ranked in the top ten nationally: in 2008 Okie State's offense was #6, and Mizzou's was #8. That year both teams ate up more than 480+ ypg, and surrendered more than 405+ ypg.
At this point, UM is certainly on pace to equal both those totals; if it comes with similar results that would exceed my pre-season expectations.
BTW, those Okie State and Mizzou teams were senior-laden that lost quite a bit after that 2008 season. UM is far younger and can expect improvement even if they have similar results.
|2 years 32 weeks ago||Home field is about the only reason I think we win...||
because if this game was in East Lansing I see Sparty winning. However, playing at home will be a big boost. My prediction is 48-38.
But here's one big caveat -- IU has given the league the template for beating UM, and MSU has the QB who could replicate it. IU simply kept UM's offense off the field with their passing attack, and I'm afraid MSU and Iowa have talented and experienced QBs who could do what Ben Chappell did.
This is where the O MUST help the D. UM's quick-strike capability is keeping the D on the field way too long. RR, Denard & Co. are going to have to practice some ball control strategy to limit MSU's opportunities against our D. This week I'd rather see 10 play, 80 yard drives than 2 play quick strikes.
I don't care if some consider TOP an overvalued metric or not, IU had the ball for 42:00 compared to UM's 18:00. They ran 98 plays to our 45. If UM holds onto the ball for 2:00 more each quarter, raising TOP to 26:00, that's 8:00 IU DOESN'T have a chance to score against our D. That alone could've wiped away 2 IU TDs.
|2 years 33 weeks ago||If this becomes true, do you realize what this means?||
If UM and OSU go into The Game at 6-1, they will both be in the Top 10 with at minimum a Rose Bowl berth on the line, and a possible (for OSU, maybe) BCS Tilte game berth.
That would be quite a way to end the last season before next year's expansion, wtih UM and OSU back where they're accustomed to being. But I'd rather see how UM performs against IU and MSU before being that bold.
|2 years 36 weeks ago||Despite the run game||
Despite the run game dominance we showed against UConn, my favorite quote in the entire UFR is:
"...if Notre Dame leaves primary reads open Robinson will hit them."
That is a million billion zillion light years difference from last year's DR, and can make this offense truly special.
|2 years 41 weeks ago||Shot off ND's Bow||
I think Jim Delany's nine-game conference schedule proposal is aimed squarely at Notre Dame and the Big Ten's future expansion goals. Think about it -- ND has regular rivalries with UM, MSU and Purdue, and occasionally slips in a Northwestern or tOSU. UM and maybe MSU keep their ND rivalries after moving to nine league games, but does Purdue? And what incentive would any other Big Ten team have to play ND in that new environment?
In other words, Delany is saying, "ND, if you can't play us, join us."
Delany is one Macchiavellian mofo.
|2 years 44 weeks ago||I don't get it, "traditionalists"...||
Call me a big supporter of the renovation. Now we can have modern conveniences and a more comfortable environment. The life cycle of the Big House has been extended 25-50 years.
To me, the most important component of the renovation? Pardon me for shouting, but, ahem -- IMPACT ON NOISE! We all know Michigan Stadium has a reputation for being the home of the quietest 110,000 people you'll ever find, and I've got to think that the new suite towers will give the team the kind of SurroundSound experience that translates to a bigger home field advantage.
Honestly, IMHO the first time a visiting QB (not from tOSU, ND or Little Brother) has to burn all their TOs because they can't call a play, the renovation investment would be worth it.
|2 years 48 weeks ago||Sound reasoning, but...||
Penn State and is gonna scream about their travel costs relative to everyone else in the conference. I wouldn't be surprised if their costs will be 20% more than anyone else's in their division.
However, I think Penn State would accept this if there's an understanding that this is short-term -- meaning, the addition of a couple of Eastern schools ( any two of the 'Cuse, Rutgers, Pitt triumvirate) and ND in the Big 16.
|2 years 49 weeks ago||I certainly don't have||
I certainly don't have numbers to back me up, but anecdotally I could agree. A super strong rushing attack will have more value in going against their own grain on occasion. But I'd argue also that WVA in '07 passed just as much as it needed to, relative to the defensive strength of the Big East. Passing any more would have diminished value.
However, the Big Ten's top D's (OSU, PSU, Iowa, Wis.) are stronger than anything in the Big East, and will likely adjust very quickly to a steady diet of UM run reads. RR will probably have to get a better run/pass balance than he had at WVA to be similarly successful -- hence the Oregon comparison.
|2 years 49 weeks ago||Mathlete, as always the the||
Mathlete, as always the the analysis is tremendous. Mostly because I also believe we are this/close to having an elite offense, too. But I don't think the offense will have the same kind of profile (run/pass distribution, yards per attempt) as WVA in 2007, and that will have an impact on the offense.
WVA in '07 had a 70/30 run/pass distribution and only gained 159 passing ypg. That's OK when you have a Pat White, a Steve Slaton, and weak WRs in a weak Big East, but stronger Big Ten defenses and UM's level of talent at WR and slot will likely force a more equitable run/pass distribution.
I see the UM 2010 offense having a profile similar to Oregon, 2007-2009. For those 3 seasons the Ducks averaged 455 ypg, with 255 rushing ypg and 200 passing ypg. They averaged anywhere from 5.3 to 6.2 yds per rushing attempt, and right around 7 yds per pass attempt. They did this with a 60/40 run/pass distribution, and they've averaged 38.7 ppg over the last 3 seasons. And they won 9, 10 and 10 games over that span. We'd take that, wouldn't we?
Incidentally, the Ducks have had a middling defense during that period as well. I don't know if that's because they give up lots of yards because the offense plays at such a fast pace (giving opposing offenses more chances), or if they're actually pretty meh. At any rate, I think that's the profile and the model.
|4 years 12 weeks ago||Hey!||
Did I just start something? Yesterday I made a diary post on this blog about the stats of true freshman QBs, and I see someone else runs the same thing?
I thought only conventional media types robbed from "the bloggers".
|4 years 12 weeks ago||Not a Knock on Navarre||
I liked John Navarre. I think you read something totally different from my intent.
I saw Navarre/Threet parallels -- both were thrust into a starting role prematurely; both had confidence struggles that led to wild swings in productivity. But Navarre grew into the position, and while he was never an All-American candidate, he was better than mediocre. My intent was to say that Threet could have evolved into the adequate and ultimately mildly successful QB that Navarre was.
Tate Forcier's size will be an issue. It was for Drew Brees. It was also for Chris Leak. It was also for Chase Daniels. All were about the same size as Forcier.
Does that mean I expect similar production from Forcier right off the bat? Hell no. But I would hope that Forcier's developed the kind of QB savvy and sixth-sense that would aid in his success.
Moving on, moving forward, whatever. I am not branding Forcier as a savior -- just saying he's probably the best we got.
|4 years 12 weeks ago||Maybe it's optimistic...||
But what's the alternative? Sheridan running the show the entire season? Not. Gonna. Happen. Evenly split QB time between Sheridan and Forcier? Maybe a little more likely, but could lead to factions and chemistry problems on the offense. And if you split time between 3 QBs (Sheridan/Forcier/Robinson), you have a mighty stron recipe for Offense Mutiny.
Someone has to emerge as the frontrunner. And I'm guessing that RichRod determined that either 1) the Threet/Forcier margin heading into spring practice was razor-thin, and he would go with the guy who best fits the offense and with the highest ceiling, or 2) Forcier has already demonstrated that he's the frontrunner. If neither case was true, he would've been doing everything he could to keep Threet around. But he didn't.
|4 years 12 weeks ago||OK, so I miffed on a big one||
When I looked up Sam Bradford's info, I didn't see a redshirt. I goofed on that one. But if anything, it shows how much that one year of incubation can mean for QB production.
As far as weighting the QBs by * rankings, they sorta did that by themselves already. A 4+* QB is very unlikely to head to Duke, or even Kansas St., if they have offers from more prominent schools. And I think the numbers reflect the relative talent that each QB had at their disposal, which inflated (or deflated) their stats.