Great Jack Miller Writeup from MGoBlue

Great Jack Miller Writeup from MGoBlue

Submitted by Sports on September 16th, 2014 at 1:49 PM

Mgoblue.com did an excellent profile of Jack Miller that included some pretty moving stories about his family history. Great read on a slow news day. Really makes me pull for him even more than I was!

Link: http://www.mgoblue.com/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/091614aac.html

A Closer Look at the Utes

A Closer Look at the Utes

Submitted by alum96 on September 16th, 2014 at 1:18 AM

A msg poster from Utah was kind enough to post some thoughts from his side of the table in another thread so I will cut and paste his commentary into the first post of this thread.  Here are some tidbits I have found from across the interwebs - these should be generally true.

First, there is no transitive theory in football but USC, Nebraska, and Utah have all feasted on Fresno State this year.  No idea why Nebraska is forced to go play games at the Fresno State's of the world but Nebraska's game was on the road while Utah's was at home.  Since we are far more familiar with Nebraska football then USC football, I'll keep it short and say the box scores look very similar in the Neb-FState and Utah-FState.  Of course please account that these box scores don't break out 1st half versus 2nd half and surely both Nebraska and Utah were playing backups by middle to late 3rd quarter.  So if transitive has any theory expect a team that is maybe 85-95% of Nebraska to show up in AA this Saturday.

 

Utah's Offense

QB Travis Wilson is a very big (6'7 240 lb) man.  His 2013 season was highlighted by a lot of injuries and a lot of INTs, to the tune of 1:1 TD:INT.  This year he has improved to 6 TD: 0 INT.  Completion % thus far is up from 56% to 63%. Fluke due to baby seals? Maybe - but perhaps it's coaching.  After screwing up Arizona State and getting fired Dennis Erickson went to Utah to be OC.  He screwed that up so was demoted after last year to RB coach, and in came Dave Christensen.  D.C. coached the Missouri offense for a decade (think Brad Smith/Chase Daniel), then went to Wyoming to be a HC - that didn't work out and he is back to his OC role.  Early returns with the QB at least seem promising - reduce those turnovers.  Wilson runs a "little bit" - surprising for his size but obviously not a home run threat.  They do have a backup QB who has been playing who is more of a dual threat guy.

RBs - 2 headed Devontae Booker and Bubba Poole.  Booker was a prolific JC transfer who sat out last year and in early returns versus baby seals seems more dangerous.  Poole in 2013 averaged 4.1 per carry.

WRs - Some real danger here if Wilson is not pressured.  Lost 3 of their top 4 WRs but their top guy is Dres Anderson who has a modest 27.9 average reception thru 2 games. That's not a fluke, he average 18.9 per catch in 2013 ... and he had 1000 yards last year even with a meh QB.  He is 6'2 190 so think a tall Gallon.  In a very offense friendly conference he is an All Conference candidate.   Kenneth Scott is also an issue at 6'3 210 - suffered injury in first game of 2013 and missed the season but a 4 star recruit who is currently the reception leader thru 2 games.

TE - 5th year SR here in cool dude named Westlee Tonga (6'4, 250 lbs) who is 3rd on team in receptions with 6.

OL - short and sweet, left side brings 2 experienced starters who played every game last year including another cool name "Junior Salt".  Center has some experience.  Guys on the right side, not so much.

Thoughts - Taylor and Wilson back would be a big help as Utah has the tools to attack via the air.  This is the first real WR Peppers will have seen outside of a practice.  Anderson is better than anything ND threw out there.  Peppers/Lewis and if Taylor gets back should go against him - looks like a guy who would sacrific Countess on a bloody altar. But you can't just worry about him - Kenneth Scott seems like a good player too.  They also have a TE who is useful.

Based on game film I expect any team with the tools to use the pass to open up the run.  This team has the tools.  Our peeps facing right side of their OL need to create pressure as they are inexperienced there.   Doubt their QB has faced an iota of pressure all year so let's do that ok DL?  Utah brings a decent run game but if our run defense is as advertised we should be able to hurt it.  This feels on paper like ND offense with a lesser QB but better WRs. (Edit - Utah plays at a quick pace)

 

Utah's Defense

I did less work on the defense than the offense so will have a shorter review.

DL - SR DE Nate Orchard (6'4, 255) looks to be a beast mode type of player, the kind who can be very scary for either Mason Cole or Ben Braden. Might need the TEs to stay in and help chip in on this guy a lot.  Stanford has a very good OL - Orchard went off for 2 sacks and 2 forced fumbles in that game.  Other DE is less scary.  Utah lost quality DTs to graduation and current set of DTs are not over 300 lbs so won't be like the Notre Dame DTs.

LB - Utah lost its top LB to graduation.  Coach's nephew Jason Whittngham (6'2, 240) was manning the middle - a quality player who apparently dislocated his wrist and is out..  Jared Norris is a decent OLB on 1 side and less experience at the other OLB.

Secondary - Safeties are good and experienced.  FS Eric Rowe was a first team freshmen All American in 2011, and started every game last year.   SS Brian Blechen was a freshmen All American in 2010 who RS last year due to injury.  Corners are first year starters.

Thoughts - Braden and/or Cole better eat their Wheaties.  Expect guard and/or TE help on Orchard all game.  That of course means everyone else has to win 1 v 1 but their DTs dont seem like world beaters... but obviously wont be Miami OH or App State types.  The back 7 took a hit with the loss of their MLB.  Safeties seem the strength of the back 7, so attack the edges - obviously Funchess would be nice to do to that.  But low INT Devin showing up would be nice.  If I was OC for a day maybe I create a rolling pocket for 6-8 plays this game - always rolling away from Orchard.

Not sure how the run game will stack up vs Utah.  They had a good run defense last year (20th in country) but lost a good amount of experience in the front 7.  They have given up a lot of first downs and decent yardage (300+) to baby seals but hard to tell what is happening in those games just from box scores due to backups being in and giving up yardage in the 3rd and 4th quarter.

This feels on paper like a defense we can score quite a bit on if we can slow down Orchard and grrrr... execute.

 

Michigan 2nd slowest team in the NCAA

Michigan 2nd slowest team in the NCAA

Submitted by dnak438 on September 16th, 2014 at 12:20 AM

This is a pretty funny tweet:

A MICHIGAN MAN SAVORS THE MOMENT MT @McMurphyESPN: Slowest teams in seconds per play this year: Army (31.1) & Michigan (30.9)

— Ryan Nanni (@celebrityhottub) September 15, 2014

On the other hand, it does raise serious issues. What is with Michigan's tempo? One answer is that Nussmeier and Hoke aren't averse to tempo but are focusing on executing a new offense, and as the team settles in, tempo will become part of Michigan's offensive arsenal.

Another viewpoint is that there must be other teams breaking in new offenses, which have less experienced coaching staffs, as well as less good football players learning these offenses, and they are faster on a per play basis than Michigan (except for Army).

I wasn't able to find the full breakdown of each team, but it's something worth keeping an eye on, especially as it's been a topic of some interest for Brian and the rest of the MGoStaff.

Michigan Monday v. Miami is up

Michigan Monday v. Miami is up

Submitted by StephenRKass on September 15th, 2014 at 11:54 PM

Michigan Monday vs. Miami is up over at The Ozone. As always, there's a lot of material there, but the opening statement sums things up well:

The Michigan Wolverines did exactly what they were supposed to do in their 34-10 win over the Miami RedHawks on Saturday, it just took them a little while to actually do it.

When the offense had the ball:

The one aspect of this game that jumped out at me more than any other was how much better Derrick Green looked compared to a week ago.

I'm not saying his problems are over, I'm saying it's good to know that he actually has the ability to see a hole and his brain can tell his legs to head towards it. Usually, the message from his brain to his legs ends in, “This seems like a good place to rest.”

Thoughts on Gardner:

Every week Gardner throws about four passes that should be intercepted, and whether Michigan wins or loses generally depends on how those throws end up. 

I don't know if he is lacking confidence, but I imagine that his coaches lack some confidence in him, even though they would never admit it.

For me, whether or not this can become a high-powered offense depends more on Gardner than it does the offensive line right now. 

On the stout run defense:

There's no need to show much defensively against Miami, but somebody in the front seven should be able to bring a running back down in the backfield. Obviously the front seven is doing something right because nobody is running on them, but it's almost like they just put up a wall at the line of scrimmage and don't try to cross into the offense's territory.

I don't understand how they are so good against the run, but I can certainly acknowledge that it's happening. Is it because they haven't yet played a team who lives on the run? At least in some part, definitely. I'm just wondering where the penetration is.

On the secondary:

The pass defense had some issues in terms of personnel. 

It was good to see Peppers get some extensive time at cornerback instead of nickel. He responded well and I wonder how long it will be until he's starting.

It was also good to see Dymonte Thomas out there at safety for some snaps. He's a big hitter who is still looking to become the player that so many saw when he was a five-star prospect out of Ohio.

On special teams (blistering comments on clock mismanagement)

Lastly, I suppose this would be the best place to talk about an instance in this game that pretty much characterized everything wrong with Brady Hoke as a head coach.

The crowd was booing from the first time Hagerup was sent out onto the field. They've grown tired of this mentality at a time when it shouldn't even be in effect. This is Freaking Miami Freaking Of Freaking Ohio. They didn't win a game last year. Are you that unsure of your team or your own ability to coach them that you think not getting six yards with under a minute to play is going to allow them to go the 40-odd yards necessary just to get a crack at a long field goal attempt? How does this instill confidence in anybody?

The execution was horrific, but the mentality was even worse. Brady Hoke went full Ferentz, and you never go full Ferentz.

There's much, much more, but I've already quoted too much as it is. Read it all if you're starving for content prior to the UFR's coming up mid-week.

EDIT:  So, going forward, I'll probably continue to link to Michigan Monday if no one else does. (Brian linked there after ND, and someone else did the week before against ASU. I don't own MM or have a particular claim on it . . . just think that Gerdeman is one of the better reads out there.) However, I think my use of block quotes was egregious, and so I will shorten that down a bit. On a different yet related note, I'd love for someone on the staff to watch the OSU game weekly, and provide a similar synopsis of the Buckeyes for MGoBlog as we head toward the end of November.

Brian Cole Ejected/Suspended

Brian Cole Ejected/Suspended

Submitted by Trump on September 15th, 2014 at 10:38 PM

Title says it all. Michigan 4 star recruit, Brian Cole, was suspended for the first quarter of last Friday's game for "disciplinary reasons." Cole then entered the game in the 2nd quarter, only to receive 2 unsportsmanlike conduct penalties before halftime. By rule, when a player obtains 2 such penalties, they are ejected for the remainder of the game, as well as the next game. Here is to hoping he matures a little before stepping onto campus. Hopefully before... Don't need an MSU situation on our hands.

ARTICLE

Wal-Mart wolverines: Since someone else brought it up...

Wal-Mart wolverines: Since someone else brought it up...

Submitted by chewieblue on September 15th, 2014 at 10:33 PM

I was born in Michigan and my Sparty-grad father cheated on my mom and ran off to start a new life and family with another woman. Needless to say, my hatred for Sparty started at a young age because I associated them with my "father". At five years old, you can make such blanket connections without remiss. Having a Michigan family on my mom's side, six alums in all, didn't hurt either.
Early in my life, my mother met a guy from Ohio who was living and working in Michigan. A couple years later, I was living in Ohio. I've spent the next 30+ years of my life in the state I now call home.
That guy my mom married was a Buckeye born and bred. Hell, he even knew and called "the vest" a friend. Despite that, he took me to my first Michigan game and many to follow. He saw the connection I had to the U of M and selflessly helped me to embrace it.
I was accepted to Michigan in my senior year of high school, one of the proudest days of my life. But with all the sentimental connections I had to Michigan, out of state tuition made that trigger too hard (and a bit too selfish) to pull, knowing my step-dad would have to take on a lot more work to help foot the bill.
I love the U of M for more reasons than I can say. For the family members who diverted my attention by taking me to games when I was going through my parents' divorce. For the step-father who drove me four hours to see games at the Big House when he was secretly rooting for his friend in the red vest, and for the loathing I held for all things Sparty, thanks to the life choices of just one alum.
I guess what I am saying is that I simply take issue with the whole, "Wal-Mart Wolverine" meme, because I've lived Michigan in so many ways. I've died each dropped pass, each missed tackle and each loss as much as any alum. I've caught nerf balls at tailgates as a youngster, I've watched in person as Biakabatuka rambled through a damp, cool November afternoon. I've taken my wife and kids to the golf course and the blue lot to start the cycle over again.
My connections to the maize and blue are as meaningful to me and my family as they could be for anyone associated with the University. I love Michigan. My kids love Michigan. We support the University at every chance. God willing, someday my children will be alums. Excuse me if, "Wal-Mart wolverine", doesn't quite sum up how much the place means to me, and maybe, what I mean to it.

When was Michigan's last non-televised football game?

When was Michigan's last non-televised football game?

Submitted by stephenrjking on September 15th, 2014 at 8:06 PM
I was thinking about this the other day, and the Minnesota thread reminded me of it: I can't remember the last time Michigan played a game that wasn't on tv somewhere.

Of course it has happened in my memory--I used to listen to non-televised games on the radio with my Dad, and in the mists of time we used to target non-televised games to attend for our one game a year. But at least as far back as 1997 non-TV games were practically a distant memory (I remember this because there was an article about senior ND QB Ron Powlus, the one-time wunderkind of whom the article remarked, "His every game has been on national television." Reading that, I worked back through 1994 and was pretty sure that at the very least almost every Michigan game had been televised in some way in that time period).

Obviously no B1G team goes un televised anymore, but Michigan has always been one do the bigger tv draws. Anyone know what game was the last one seen only in-Stadium?

A Look at All Power 5 Coaching Changes, 2007-2011

A Look at All Power 5 Coaching Changes, 2007-2011

Submitted by reshp1 on September 15th, 2014 at 4:08 PM

Ahhh, a red snapper. Mmmmm, very tasty. Okay, Weaver, listen carefully. You can hold on to your red snapper... ...or you can go for what's in the box that Hiro-San is bringing down the aisle right now! What's it gonna be?

 

In case you haven’t noticed, there has been a fair amount of talk around here about a coaching change. Some have already made up their mind, especially after Notre Dame. Others, like me, want to wait until the end of the season, but I think we all recognize that it’s a real possibility if the team doesn’t show consistent improvement.

So, here we are. We might as well talk about it.

My personal feeling on coaching changes is that you have consider all the possibilities that can happen, not just focus on the potential positives. A lot of debates seem to just compare our current situation against the best case scenarios and dismiss the potential negative effects and scenarios that are possible as well. Names like Harbaugh and Chip Kelly are often brought up as an example of guys coming in and turning programs around, and as examples of why Hoke’s struggles of late are inexcusable not matter what the issues he’s had to deal with.

But guys like that are special and don’t grow on trees. You can rattle off their names off the top of your head precisely because they are the cream of the crop and the exception to the norm. But what happens the rest of the time? It behooves us to look at all the data, not just the outcomes we want.

Coaching Changes 2007-2011

We start with collegefootballpoll.com’s database of coaching all coaching changes in FBS. Since Michigan has a bit more job prestige than your average FBS team, I only included teams in the Power 5 conferences (B1G, Big12, Pac-12, SEC, ACC) and strong independents like Notre Dame to get a data set of teams more comparable to Michigan.

The database also does not differentiate between why changes were made whether they were retirement, voluntary resignations to move somewhere else, or firings. Clearly, only firings are relevant to our current situation, so I excised all examples that were voluntary separations, and further removed firings/forced resignations due to scandal. What we are left with are only programs that terminated their coach due to on the field performance.

We end up with a list of 36 coaching changes. These are schools in the proverbial “it can’t get worse” situation. These are schools that, even knowing the potential pitfalls of a coaching change, decided that enough was enough and something had to be done. You would think that schools in this situation would overwhelmingly benefit from a coaching change. After all, they perceived themselves to be a position where they had nowhere to go but up. As we’ll see from the data, and as we learned from our 2012 offensive line situation, things can most definitely get worse.

Do Coaching Changes Result in an Increase in Win Percentage?

We’ll first compare the performance of the new coach over their first three years vs the previous three years. The graph below shows the differential between the average wins per year of the outgoing vs incoming coach.

click embiggens

As you can see, it’s a mixed bag. The average change resulted in less than 1 win per season improvement (0.88 win/season), and the variation is pretty huge. On average though, coaches could not manage to significantly improve even upon the performance that was so bad it got their predecessor canned.  

The big positive turnarounds should be familiar to you. These are, for the most part, the coaches you already know because this is how they made a name for themselves. Franklin at Vanderbilt, Brian Kelly at ND, Nick Saban at Alabama, Sarkisian at Washington, and our very own Brady Hoke are among the names that top the list.

The Immediate Impact

Next, let’s looked at now the new coach fared in the first year compared to the previous 3 year average.

The results here are even less encouraging. On average, the first year for the new coach was slightly worse than the previous coach in the 3 years prior to being fired (-0.11 wins/season). Brady Hoke and Houston Nutt were the significant positive outliers (mostly because their predecessors were really bad over their three years). On the other side of the spectrum, Minnesota replacing a perpetually on-the-cusp Glenn Mason with Tim Brewster was the worst idea ever.

The negative first year differential isn’t totally unexpected though. Coaching changes come with transition costs. There are transfers and the guys that stay have to learn a new system, sometimes one that doesn’t suit their talents. Clearly, those expecting an instant improvement will most likely be disappointed.

Third Year Performance

But what about year three? The new coach has installed his system on both sides of the ball and by now his recruiting classes are starting to see the field. One would expect that by now, they’ve overcome the initial hurdles and can place their stamp on the program.

Here, the data is finally a little more encouraging. Most schools were better off after year 3 than they were in the 3 years prior to the change. The average differential was about a game and a half better per season (1.44). This also suggests that generally coaches improve from year 1 to year 3, something Hoke has been criticized for not accomplishing (although, it must be said, he had the biggest year 1 turnaround of all coaches).

A Closer Look at the Turnaround Artists

People will say, “Well, just don’t make a bad hire then.” But do the guys that succeed really look that different from the ones that don’t?

If you look at the list of names that managed to turn schools around, just about all of them would be on anyone’s coaching wish list. But, do their track records before they were hired look like as much of a slam dunk as they seem now? Was there something on their resume at the time that differentiated them from the unsuccessful candidates, and screamed to ADs “Hire this man!”

If we limit the list to guys that improved their programs by an average of 3 or more games a season over their first 3 years, we have: Brady Hoke, Brian Kelly, Charlie Stong, David Cutliffe, Houston Nutt, James Franklin, Nick Saban, and Steve Sarkisian.

If we look at just the third year performance, the list adds: Art Briles, Bill Snyder, Butch Davis, Chip Kelly, Jim Harbaugh, and Jimbo Fisher. That's 14 guys total and is basically the top 1/3 of the 36 coaching transitions.

Let’s take a closer look at what each of these guys looked like at the time of their hiring:

Name

Relevant experience at time of hire (epilogue in parentheses)

Art Briles

Up and down stint at Houston, although took over a 3-8 team. Went 32-28 over 5 seasons.

Bill Snyder

Life-long KSU coach, came out of retirement to help his former team. Unless Carr wants to come out of retirement, the situation is not relevant to Michigan.

Brady Hoke

Actually not that bad compared to the rest of the list… Similar to Brian Kelly, but one fewer stop. Improved a MAC Ball State year to year with 12 wins in the final season. Improved a 2-10 SDSU to 9-4 in two years.

Brian Kelly

One of the few with a slam dunk record. Improved teams everywhere he went from GVSU, to Central Michigan, to Cinncinnati (Big East). Only knock would be no power 5 experience. (Continued trend at ND until a tail off last year.)

Butch Davis

One of the only ones on the list with proven HC experience at a Power5 school (6 years at Miami) and, like Saban, moved from the NFL back to college after being mediocre there.  (Fired for misconduct at UNC in 2011)

Charlie Strong

Just 1 game of HC experience at Florida as interim (after Zook got canned). DC for 3 years at South Carolina and Florida each.

Chip Kelly

No HC experience, but fairly bulletproof record at OC. Similar to Rich Rod, had a signature offensive system that was successful everywhere he coached. OC at New Hampshire prior to that. (Now in NFL)

David Cutcliffe

I'm not going to go into this too much Another coach with experience at a power school, Cutcliffe spent 6 years at Ole Miss. He hovered around 7-8 wins for 4 years, which is right around where the program was when he took over. In year 5 he broke out with 10 wins, promptly followed up with a 4 win campaign the next year that saw him fired. It should be noted that while he improved Duke, they also almost literally couldn't have been worse, winning just 2 games in 3 years.

Houston Nutt

Long, up and down stint at Arkansas. 10 win high, 4 win low, 75-48 overall. (Fired by Ole Miss after 3 years. Took over tire fire, immediate success followed by precipitous decline.)

James Franklin

WR and QB coach at Maryland and KSU respectively, then went on to OC at KSU and returned to Maryland as OC. No Head Coaching experience, no coordinator experience. A bit of an outlier in that respect.

Jim Harbaugh

Promising 3 seasons at FCS San Diego (Fighting Toreros!) as HC including conference champs in last two years. QB coach in NFL prior to that. (Now in NFL)

Jimbo Fisher

No prior HC experience. OC at LSU under Saban and Miles, and then at FSU where he was groomed as coach in waiting after Bowden retired.

Nick Saban

Hovered around 6-7 wins before getting 9 in his last year at MSU, ~9 wins a year at LSU except for one 13 win season, turning around a floundering 3-8 record the year before. And then 2 rather lack-luster seasons in the NFL.  One of the few proven entities at time of hire on this list.

Steve Sarkisian

No HC experience prior to hire. 2 years as QB coach at USC, 1 year QB coach in NFL, 2 years as OC at USC and went 22-3 in those years
 

 

These guys fall into one of three categories:

Proven HC Experience

at High Level

Up and Coming HC

at Lower Tier

Up and Coming OC or DC

at High Level

Bill Synder

Art Briles

Charlie Stong

Butch Davis

Brady Hoke

Chip Kelly

Houston Nutt

Brian Kelly

James Franklin (position coach)

Nick Saban

Jim Harbaugh

Jimbo Fisher

David Cutcliffe  

Steve Sarkisian

Of the proven category, Bill Synder was a career KSU man and a bit of a unique situation, coming out of retirement to help his former team. Michigan does not have an analogous option (Carr ain’t walking through that door). Houston Nutt’s 4th year at Ole Miss was 2-10 with no conference wins and got him canned. David Cutcliffe is stretching the definition of "proven" as he treaded water for 4 years before a good year followed by a bad year and was fired before becoming Duke's coach, a big step down from Ole Miss. Butch Davis left in scandal.

From the 5 years reviewed, Nick Saban was the only example of a successful hire of an established coach that Michigan can hope to replicate. Rick Neuheisel (UCLA) is an anti-example as an established hire to avoid. After a moderately successful HC stint at Washington that won the Pac-12 and rose bowl, he took over UCLA and only managed 21-29 over 4 years before being fired.

Neither of two the remaining categories are slam dunks either. For every rising HC star at lower tier schools that finds success at the next level, there are many more that don’t.  Paul Wulff (Washington State) was an up and coming HC at the FCS level, earning Big Sky Coach of the Year honors in 2001, 2004, and 2005, but took over Washington State and won just 5 games in 3 years.

Same goes for rising coordinator stars. Randy Shannon (Miami) fielded two top 5 defense and three other top 10 defenses in his 6 years as DC in Miami prior to being promoting HC. Even with the relatively smooth transition you’d expect from being promoted within the same school, he went 5 - 7 - 9 - 7 wins compared to Coker's 9 - 9 - 7 that got him fired. Shannon himself was fired after year 4.

On the offensive coordinator side of things, Dana Holgorsen (WV) was a promising OC at Oklahoma St that turned the #61 offense to #1 in just one year, shattering school records in just about every offensive category (total yards, scoring, passing yards, completions). But he flopped at WVU averaging 2 games worse a season than his predecessor and winning just 4 games last year (although they look more competitive this year)

As bad as some of these hires seem in hindsight, at the time, these guys don’t look all that different on paper than the ones that went on to succeed. Interpreting a coaching record is tricky business (is Brady Hoke the guy that improved every team he coached, or the career sub .500 mid major coach?). And as they say, “past performance does not guarantee future results.” It’s not just a matter of having a competent AD make a straight forward decision; it’s a very tough call for anyone and in most cases relies on leap of faith that someone can continue their upward career trend.

Retention

One other thing that immediately hit me when putting together the data is just how many of these guys are no longer around.

Only half the coachs on our list of 36 are still at their schools. It gets worse as you go farther back in time. Of the 8 coaches hired for the 2007 season, Nick Saban and Mark Dantonio are the only ones still around. A whopping 5 were fired and another (Harbaugh) left for the NFL.

Even among the 14 “winners” covered above, the story is not much better. 5 guys capitalized on their success and moved on to other positions, and 2 were fired (one scandal, on failed to sustain their initial success), only 7 remain (Snyder, Saban, Briles, Hoke, Kelly, Fisher, Cutcliffe).

What We’ve Learned

 

Coaching changes are not guaranteed to succeed.

Coaching changes are a lot like Blackjack. If you’ve got 13 and the dealer is showing an Ace, you better hit. You might bust, but you don’t have much of a choice. On the other hand, if you’re sitting on 17 and just getting greedy, asking for another card could completely backfire on you. It's a calculated risk that should only be taken if you know your current situation is untenable.

Coaching changes take time.

The data shows that year one after a change is, on average, is a step back. Most of the time, it takes even the best a few years to get their teams going. Unlike Blackjack, with coaching you only get to play a hand every 3-4 years, and the cards you’re making a decision on get dealt one per season, so you better be patient and make a good call.

Even if you hit it big, you’re not in the clear

If you’re one of the lucky ones to get a good coach, the data shows there’s a good chance they’ll capitalize on their success and move to the next stop in their career. So even if you hit it big at the casino, you still might get robbed and wake up the next morning back right where you started. Michigan is probably a destination job for most coaches among the college ranks, but the SEC and NFL always beckon.

If all this sounds like a sales pitch to retain Hoke, I apologize because that's not my intention. I'm not opposed to a coaching change and I tried to remain as objective as possible while putting this together. There are certainly success stories to try and aspire to and I recognize the last year or so have certainly not been ideal. However, we should be mindful of the pitfalls as well when making the call and hopefully this diary provides some insight into those.

Thanks for reading.

Phil Steele Bowl Prediction (Week 3)....wait for it....Michigan vs. Arizona in San Francisco Bowl! :)

Phil Steele Bowl Prediction (Week 3)....wait for it....Michigan vs. Arizona in San Francisco Bowl! :)

Submitted by markusr2007 on September 15th, 2014 at 2:38 PM

Right. And since when is Phil Steele correct in predicting anything?

Okay, I know, I know.

But today he really did day this is gonna happen and so I just think that....

And at Levi's Stadium! Woo Hoo! Thanks Phil!

 

Maurice Hurst at fullback vs Miami (NTM)

Maurice Hurst at fullback vs Miami (NTM)

Submitted by Wolverine Devotee on September 15th, 2014 at 1:06 PM

Noticed they had him on the goal line for Green's TD run. Didn't see this mentioned anywhere, but if it already was, mods please delete.

Doing his best Will Carr impression. This is the only snap I can remember him being in at FB. Anyone else see him at fullback on Saturday for any other plays?

The play is at 13:39