This is maaaaybe premature there, ESPN. Maryland #1 FWIW.
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- First of all, jumping 30 spots in FEI D is a vast improvement
- Second, you are looking at the worst possible stats you can find...his S&P rating was 80 in '13 (same as it was in '12), then jumped to 36 in '14, then 3 in '15. That is marked improvement every year, and, considering BC's talent level, pretty impressive.
- How about some more numbers? BC was #102 in total defense in '12 (year before DB arrived). Up to #93 in '13, then #11 in '14. Of course, #1 in '15 thus far.
- Agree, he outdid Orlando when he took over at UConn.
- Yes, it feels like YOUR third or fourth choice. Not sure that's true for Harbaugh.
- Mattison inherited a vast amount of talent when he arrived--Brown has never had that luxury.
- Mattison took over a defense that had not had competent coaching prior to his arrival. As you have noted, DB has followed some decent or even good coaches.
- Special Teams have improved the most--great punting, higher return averages, and more net yards. WIN - WIN - WIN.
- Defense. It's a group effort, and DJ Durkin deserves more accolades. I believe he is highly likely to get hired away this offseason. Think about this for a moment: Jabrill Peppers is an amazing talent who is having a good season...and might not even be a top three player on our defense (Lewis, Morgan, Glasgow, Wormley, and even Henry can make an argument).
- The Offensive Line play has taken a quantum leap. Nussmeier--whom you may have noticed has taken Florida from the #72 S&P offense to #24--is a capable coach who had our line playing competently by the end of 2014. This year is entirely different: we already have 15 rushing TDs, compared to 17 total for 2014. We're 34th in yds/game vs. 64th last year. And YPC average is higher than last year's, even though we've spent a huge chunk of our season killing the clock with predictable runs.
- New Ownership. The Ford family has repeatedly hired under-qualified, overwhlemed candidates at every level of the organization. Jim Caldwell IS the NFL version of Brady Hoke (I could write an entire post on how eerily similar these two are). Martin Mayhew worked on Matt Millen's staff. Joe Lombardi's only coordinator experience came at Mercyhurst College. Yeah, I've never heard of Mercyhurst either. Things won't get better without more competence in the front office and on the coaching staff.
- New GM. Martin Mayhew hasn't done everything wrong (see Roy Williams trade) but he his drafts have been average at best (second round has been a tire fire), and he has not managed the cap well. It's nearly impossible to be a winner when you're always at the top of the draft, thought that is changing now with the draft-slot salary structure. But his biggest error? Hiring Jim Caldwell. Jeff Ireland, Tom Heckert, and Scott Pioli would all be potential fits here. Ireland has a great drafting track record, Heckert has experience as a GM (and actually did pretty well with the Browns) and is now part of a winning culture in Denver, and Pioli lost his job because he screwed-up the QB situation--which can happen to literally any GM.
- New Coaches. This is the toughest, but most important change. For now, I would make Teryl Austin the interim HC and see how he does--if we don't, he's likely going to be hired by someone next year anyway. He would immediately fire Lombardi and hire Joe Philbin, who could implement Green Bay's offense, which I believe Stafford could conduct well and would boost our running game.
|1 day 14 hours ago||Talent Gap||
Great data, thanks for doing the legwork.
We are still pretty far behind the nation's elite on a four-year rolling scale. We would be ranked #11 nationally, and 'Bama, OSU, LSU, Notre Dame, and FSU all have at least 10 more 4/5* prospects than we do. To put that into perspective, that means they have almost one whole unit (offense/defense) more of top prospects.
That said, a few teams are conspicuously absent from the top of this list: Michigan State, Oregon, Baylor, and even Clemson are all ranked lower than we are. Those teams use player development and scheme to keep with college's elite programs.
2016 feels like our best chance for the next few years, but if Harbuagh is on the same level as Dantonio, Kelly/Helfrich, Briles, and Swinney (and I believe he is) there is reason to believe that Michigan is set-up for consistent and long-term success. 2017 presents some obvious roster challenges, but it is also a home/home year for MSU/OSU. Unfortunately, we open with Florida in 2017.
What will be interesting to see is how some of the lower-ranked recruits from the 2015 class start to play. This season should at least give us some hints about how good Harbaugh is at maximizing 3* talents.
|1 week 2 days ago||Mgoblue.com still reports||
Mgoblue.com still reports that it starts at 11am. I will take no chances and tune in then.
|2 weeks 1 day ago||I agree, probably||
Assuming the information we have about these decommits is correct, I wholeheartedly agree.
What sucks about this is that we don't know the other side of the story. But it sounds like our staff has learned some valuable lessons and that this will improve going forward.
All that said, none of this would be getting any attention if Harbaugh wasn't killing it on the road. Success like Harbaugh has had this quickly was always going to be attacked. I sincerely hope we handle these things better in the future, but:
|3 weeks 2 days ago||February 3rd||
I will be waking up way-too-early and getting very little done that day. This is one of the few times I wish I lived in the Eastern Time Zone.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Yikes||
And he's coaching against June Jones, who is, you know...competent.
Gonna be tough sledding for the East team.
|5 weeks 9 hours ago||Fixed headline for you:||
"6-time CFP Champion Jim Harbaugh to Detroit Lions: will be replaced by long-time OC Drevno"
|5 weeks 1 day ago||Wow||
Did not realize how good those De'Veon Smith cuts were. The broadcast angle discounts how much lateral quickness he demonstrated there. If he can do that on the regular next season then he won't be BJ Askew--he'll be Chris Perry.
While I'd like to see more speed at the position, if Smith can run like he did against the Gators consistently, I can't see anyone else being our primary ball carrier next year.
|7 weeks 2 days ago||This is awesome||
Welcome to the family, Don Brown. We are grateful and fortunate to have you!
|7 weeks 3 days ago||Don Brown has coached the 3-4||
Brown has coached the 4-3, 3-4, and even the bear defense. He has adjusted to his talent and opponent in order to find success.
|7 weeks 3 days ago||Appreciate the counterpoints||
Alum--certainly appreciate your perspective, but it feels awfully slanted. I'm not saying we just got Nick Saban as our DC, but we did not just get GERG either. Not sure why you are so sour on this one. He obviously was not an expected name, but has also done more with less than most coaches. Let's go point-by-point:
Here's where I will agree with you: this is not a hire that has me dancing in the streets. He seems like a sound, accomplished coach. And while there are some up-and-comers that might have made bigger splashes, they also might have left after a year or two. Some continuity could do wonders.
My take is that this is a very, very good hire, but not a dream hire.
Lastly, a point you've made many times is that Mattison turned around our defense right away, and to that I would say two things:
All that said, I appreciate a balanced approach and that someone has some counterpoints...but man, it sure feels like you went searching for data to support your bias rather than searching for data to find your conclusion.
|7 weeks 5 days ago||Tougher than a two dollar||
Tougher than a two dollar steak.
|8 weeks 2 days ago||Wow. We just offered a great||
Wow. We just offered a great prospect and the board is spending it's time bitching about missing on some other guys? This kid has all the tools to be great: athletic, very willing blocker, great hands and an ability to high point the ball. He needs to clean up his route running, but he could be an absolute beast.
|8 weeks 2 days ago||Excellent post||
Easy to read, nice to have the targets by position. Makes me hopeful for the future. You need moar upvotes!
|9 weeks 2 days ago||Yeah, but he totally used the||
Yeah, but he totally used the wrong picture. I mean, Krang was a very cool villain, but this guy is one of the greatest cartoon characters of all time:
|9 weeks 2 days ago||Solid List||
I would be happy with any of those guys. Not sure I trust the list, though.
|12 weeks 3 days ago||Oh yeah, he has arm strength too. Can make every throw already.||
Oh yeah, he has arm strength too. Can make every throw already.
|12 weeks 3 days ago||Only limitation I see is his||
Only limitation I see is his long delivery. And that's being nit-picky. He has accuracy, touch, poise, pocket awareness, and even speed. Bold prediction: he will go down as the best statistical QB in U-M history if he stays healthy.
|14 weeks 15 hours ago||John Beilein is the best||
This is excellent news. There is no coach I would rather have.
|15 weeks 13 hours ago||Coaching Level||
This is a great interview, and I loved the MGoFollowUp question. This team is being coached at an extremely high level, and the results on the field reflect that.
What's amazing is that it usually takes a couple of years for excellent coaching to have a big impact. If we keep guys like Greg Jackson around, we'll have consistently good play that will be elite play if the talent is there (which it should be at Michigan).
Today is awesome. Tomorrow is almost certainly going to be awesomer.
|15 weeks 2 days ago||He was Peyton's QB Coach for||
He was Peyton's QB Coach for one season. It's not like he developed the guy.
I am a Lions fan, and certainly wish JB Cooter the best, but can you honestly say Stafford looks like he's made much improvement under Cooter?
Please have fun with that last sentence.
|15 weeks 2 days ago||TRUTH||
You just can't make this stuff up. Only the Lions.
|15 weeks 5 days ago||Welcome to the Family! Can't||
Welcome to the Family! Can't wait to see you strap on the winged helmet. GO BLUE!
|16 weeks 5 days ago||He is definitely not as||
He is definitely not as shifty as Mike Hart.
He is a one-cut runner with very good acceleration and speed, but not nearly as shifty as Mike Hart. More like De'Veon Smith.
|16 weeks 5 days ago||De'Veon Smith||
He reminds me of Smith. He's more compact, has better accelration, but doesn't appear quite as strong or balanced. Then again, he's still a junior.
EDIT: Actually, love Harbaugh's Frank Gore comparison. Same build and very similar running styles.
|17 weeks 15 hours ago||This is amazing||
This play is even better than it looked--I thought the ball bounced to Lewis, but he just snatched it.
Ace...there was a Harbaugh rant earlier this year where he threw his play sheets on the ground (may have actually happened twice). I HIGHLY recommend a rant montage to this song (perhaps including some of U-M's "magic" plays and Smith tossing defenders aside):
|17 weeks 1 day ago||Biggest areas of improvement||
2015 has been an amazing year so far, and the improvement has been galactical. Here's my quick take:
If we can get to the point where we're hitting on 40% of our long pass attempts, we will become an elite team capable of beating anyone.
|17 weeks 2 days ago||Think he'll end-up on offense||
Watching his film, you see a lot more offensive highlights, and the only defensive highlights are free runs to the ball carrier. I think he would be a SS or LB, but I think he'll find a home on offense--he just loves to make plays with the ball.
He sort of reminds of De'Veon Smith--great balance, loves contact, nose for the end zone. Except he can pass. Not sure if he'll be a QB, but he could be a RB or even H-Back in our offense. Would be an amazing wildcat option.
Regardless, I think he will be an impact player for us before too long.
|17 weeks 5 days ago||Fitzgerald is "little goody||
Fitzgerald is "little goody two shoes." Have proof:
|17 weeks 5 days ago||AGREE||
He's like getting 100% in AP Calculus--should be weighted as a 4.33 or higher.
|17 weeks 5 days ago||How to Fix the Lions||
Unfortunately, these probably need to happen in reverse order. But promoting Teryl Austin and hiring Joe Philbin would be a good start.
Seriously, how does Caldwell keep his job, considering he is an offensive coach whose team can't score points with Calvin Johnson, Golden Tate, Tim Wright, Ameer Abdullah, Eric Ebron (now injured), etc.?
Caldwell is the epitome of a Lions coach: a resume just good enough to get hired and mediocre enough not to get fired until he's done real damage to the organizaiton.
I wish I could somehow become a fan of another NFL team, but I can't. I love the Lions, and I am therefore doomed to NFL misery until the Fords sell the team or get lucky with a GM/Coach that are competent despite being approved by the Fords.
I will leave you with this quote from Bill Ford, Jr., which tells you all you need to know:
"I'm willing to stake my reputation on Matt Millen's success [as a GM]."