Unverified Voracity Hit Mark Emmert With A Chair

Unverified Voracity Hit Mark Emmert With A Chair

Submitted by Brian on May 14th, 2018 at 12:21 PM

No news yet on the Jalen Wilson front. Other than the fact that he received his offer:

Standard "everything went great" takes from Josh Henschke at 24/7, but Henschke does mention he has an interview scheduled with Wilson. That in and of itself is a fairly good sign.

All-22 aggression. Via Cody Alexander:

This is the kind of stuff I can't see from the broadcast angle. One caveat: pretty sure that's Rutgers providing the opposition. Michigan had almost as many sacks (5) as Rutgers had completions (8) in that game, thus allowing things like "deep centerfield safety gets his nose on a ballcarrier at the line of scrimmage."

Alexander's Don Brown clinic notes are fascinating and available at the link.

*swoon.* Brad Stevens on a sticky wicket he found himself in:

I would not trade John Beilein for anyone. Brad Stevens makes you think, though.

WELCOME YOUR NEW GOD GAMBLOR. The Supreme Court struck down a federal ban on sports gambling, thus paving the way for every state hard up for a little cash to legalize and regulate the wildly popular activity. (Probably: Richard Hoeg has more law-talking details.) And if college athletic departments have their hand out…

…wait, what? Here is your justification:

"If this is legalized, what the ADs said is that we'll have to spend more money on compliance and we're going to have increased risk," McMillen told ESPN in a Thursday phone interview. "What was shown, at schools with regulated [sports betting] markets -- Nevada, UNLV -- they spend considerably more on compliance, because it's more open, more transparent, more in your face than the other schools where it's illegal. The fact of the matter is that the onus is going to fall on Marshall and West Virginia."

Those compliance departments have to send out way more than one tweet in March about not joining an NCAA pool? They have to have a workshop about how gambling on sports is bad if you play sports? I'm not sure what the big expense is.

Brian Windhorst has an interesting article about the push from pro sports leagues to legalize sports betting in the US; the NCAA is likely to get caught up in this whether they want to or not.

BAH GOD SHE KILT EM. A post-committee Condoleeza Rice is more explicit that the NCAA should restore name and likeness rights to athletes:

"We believe that students ought to be able to benefit from name, image and likeness but you can’t decide a program until you know the legal parameters,” Rice told USA TODAY Sports. “That was the point. I think some of the commentary suggested that we didn’t really speak on this issue. I think we did speak on this issue, it’s just that we understand there’s a legal framework that has to be developed first.”

Rice said she thought the commission’s report was “pretty clear” in its support of athletes being able to cash in once the various legal issues are resolved. But she maintains that the NCAA cannot do this while a pair of ongoing cases are pending.

"I think people may have looked at the fact that we said there's a legal framework to be developed and said, 'Oh, well, maybe they're punting on this.' Nobody was intending to punt on it."

As something that costs the NCAA nothing, has broad public support, cuts down on a bunch of self-contradictory rulings, and would pave the way for the return of NCAA Football, restoring NIL rights to college athletes is an obvious slam dunk. It thus has a 37% chance of actually happening.

One and done doesn't even accomplish much. John Gasaway has created a history of one and done that convincingly asserts that it accomplishes little:

We don’t yet know the order in which the freshmen of 2017-18 will be selected, of course, but, by Jonathan Givony’s lights, we may be due for a similar evaluative echo next month on draft night.

                     RSCI 2017    Projection 2018
Marvin Bagley III        1               3
Michael Porter, Jr.      2               8
Deandre Ayton            3               1
Mohamed Bamba            4               5
Trevon Duval             5              45
Collin Sexton            6               9
Wendell Carter, Jr.      7               7
Mitchell Robinson        8              22
Jaren Jackson, Jr.       9               4
Kevin Knox              10              15
  

Yes, Duval stands out, and, sure, projected No. 6 pick Trae Young made very good use of the one additional year of evaluation afforded to NBA teams. The question then becomes whether one-and-done earns its evaluative keep simply by having flagged the fact that Duval “should” drop 40 spots and Young “should” jump 20.

That’s pretty much all the current eligibility requirement is accomplishing in terms of player evaluations. Otherwise, we could have held this draft a year ago, and it would have looked highly similar to what will (we think) transpire next month.

Actually, even that gives one-and-done too much evaluative credit. In an alternate reality where players could be drafted straight out of high school, it’s possible Duval would have been a 2017 pick — but Young, surely, would have gone undrafted. Then, after the amazing freshman season that we now know happened, Young would have been a 2018 lottery pick. In this scenario, then, the lone evaluative function of one-and-done with regard to the top of the board is to prevent Duval from having been a high draft pick a year ago, period.

And Duval had to enter the draft anyway because Duke recruited over him with authority. There are probably some extraordinary busts the NBA has avoided, but the one-and-done rationale about preventing Kwame Browns is extremely flimsy.

No seed for softball. Michigan gets shipped to Lexington for the opening round of the tourney:



Lexington Regional

No. 16 Kentucky vs. UIC | 2:30 p.m. ET Friday on WatchESPN

Michigan vs. Notre Dame | 12 p.m. Friday on ESPN2

Softball regionals are, well, regional, so that's not a definite statement that Michigan was #17, but if they weren't they were fairly close. Unfortunately, Michigan is entering the tournament on a skid after getting blown out twice at the Big Ten tourney.

Iggy can dunk. But he has still not set a video of himself to Lust for Life.

Etc.: Remembering the 2004 Clemson-South Carolina brawl. Excellent set-piece goal in stoppage time gives AFC Ann Arbor a 1-0 win over Detroit Suburb Residents FC. More All or Nothing potentially on the way? Who the F is Tom Brady? Transferring is not really an epidemic. Adam Silver is not just in charge of things.

Unverified Voracity Is Not A Sitcom Dad

Unverified Voracity Is Not A Sitcom Dad

Submitted by Brian on April 27th, 2018 at 12:45 PM

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draft this man [Eric Upchurch]

What? Mo Hurst did not go in the first round of the NFL draft, which is now #1 on my list of WTF NFL draft moments in the I-look-at-everything-in-detail era:

  1. Hurst.
  2. Jonas Mouton, constantly out of position looks-like-Tarzan dude, goes in the second round.
  3. Alan Branch falls into the second round behind three DT jabronis.
  4. Lamarr Woodley also falls into the second round of that draft.
  5. David Harris, same thing, same draft.

Ernest Shazor dropping out entirely was a twitter suggestion but Shazor checked out immediately after ending that Purdue receiver and reportedly had some off-field issues. The most absurd thing from Michigan's end was Ryan Mundy transferring to WVU and then getting drafted.

I reserve the right to revise this opinion if it turns out that Hurst's heart condition is more severe than people are letting on. Todd McShay did assert he would plummet because of it before yesterday's first round.

This is not a true thing. Don Brown is not a sitcom dad. And only a sitcom dad would do this.

Don Brown did not pour 30 dollars worth of espresso in a cup and slam it with one gulp and then almost die. He is a highly competent leader of men. This isn't I Love Lucy.

Oh God. What if it is? What if we're in the I Love Lucy universe? IT WOULD EXPLAIN AN AWFUL LOT, WOULDN'T IT.

I'll take a carton of Cartons. 247 basketball analyst guy Brian Snow has issued a Michigan prediction for "soon to be five star"(!) IA PG DJ Carton based on a bunch of people's assertions about Carton's recruitment. Pick sounds somewhat speculative—it's a number of people with low-confidence opinions, not one or two with a high-confidence one—but it's still a situation where Michigan is recruiting against the rest of the Big Ten instead of one-and-done powerhouses that they're batting 0.100 against. (McGary.) There are no regional offers left to get, and he's been everywhere already:

He’s also a step ahead of most of his classmates in his recruiting process. That’s due in large part to a busy visit scheduled his family has managed for him over the past year.

“I have been to Creighton, Michigan, Ohio State, Illinois, Iowa, Marquette, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Missouri, Indiana, that’s all I can think of right now.” Carton said in Texas.

Michigan is in a good place, as Carton is currently Recruit Who Asserts He Has No Future Visits Set Up Except This One School:

Another trip to Indiana is under serious consideration per his father and another Big Ten campus trip seems likely as well.

“I don’t have any scheduled right now but I did talk to (Michigan) coach (John) Beilein and he is wanting me to come to campus as soon as possible,” Carton said. “My family and I are going to probably scheduled that one soon.”

As a bonus, Sam agrees and also asserts that 5-star TX SF Jalen Wilson is highly realistic. He's taking an unofficial in two weeks and… uh… commit watch maybe? Probably not. But maybe? And then we shoot Boeheim if he looks even a little squirrelly?

The Hoiberg plan. Nebrasketball picks up that Robert Morris transfer:

He'll sit one and play two. Tim Miles continues to stack his roster with transfers—probably smart for a program that's near zero viable recruits and doesn't have a lot of history.

Etc.: Andrew Kahn reviews Charles Matthews's sophomore season. BEST OF BACON. Pork? John U? EITHER WAY PRETTY GOOD. Being not-rich at Michigan. More blue ribbon takes.

Spring Practice Presser 3-27-18: Don Brown

Spring Practice Presser 3-27-18: Don Brown

Submitted by Adam Schnepp on March 28th, 2018 at 9:01 AM

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[Marc-Gregor Campredon]

[Ed. A- Thanks to Isaiah Hole for sending along video so I could transcribe this, as I wasn’t able to be there due to some medical issues in my family]

“How’s everybody doin’? We good? Doin’ great. I think. Forty-one years, so…still rollin’. We’re three practices in. Two good ones in no pads. Lot of learning, lot of football being digested. As you know here, that’s what we do.

“Can’t say enough good things about Herb[ert] and the strength staff. Really gave us a really solid group of guys in terms of cardiovascular and bigger, stronger, faster, and just glad to be back with my guys.

“Been doing this a long time. This might be if not the fastest then one of the fastest groups I’ve ever been around, so pretty excited about it. Obviously we’ve got a lot of things to work on but we’ll get there. There’s no question in my mind.”

With Devin and Khaleke, can you talk about some of those guys that are challenging the other guys at linebacker?

“Well, let me just say this, okay? This Devin Bush Jr.? Special guy now, okay? That’s all I’m gonna say. There’s a private story, but this guy stayed with his team. He could have easily checked out for three or four days and everybody would have understood and he didn’t. So, I think we’re talking about a guy whose character is completely off the charts.

“This Khaleke Hudson is playing at a tremendous level a year ago, and I think he’s a much better cover guy right now. He’s playing at a much faster rate. He should go kiss Ben Herbert on the lips because he’s helped him tremendously.

“This Josh Ross is gonna be a dude. He’s gonna be a really good player. Drew Singleton will be a very good player. Noah Furbush, his arrow is so far up from a year ago. I’m just very excited about where he is. Glasgow, we made the move from Viper behind Khaleke, took the slot coverage off his plate, and that’s helped him improve.

[I had to split this in the middle of an answer which tells you a lot about the quality of the responses after THE JUMP]

Wednesday Presser 11-22-17: Don Brown

Wednesday Presser 11-22-17: Don Brown

Submitted by Adam Schnepp on November 23rd, 2017 at 9:01 AM

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[Upchurch]

“Happy Thanksgiving, everybody.”

[Everyone in unison like the end of a Peanuts special] Happy Thanksgiving.

Talk about the Ohio State Offense and the challenge of preparing for them.

“Yeah, they’ve got good players. Two really good running backs, quarterback’s a veteran guy who knows how to play this game, some explosive guys at the receiver position, I think they’re improved in the offensive line, tight ends solid, so yeah, we’ve got a good offensive outfit to get ready for.”

Chase Winovich said that the highest praise he feels he’s ever gotten here is you calling him an ‘animal, bro.’ What do you think the highest praise is that you give out to a guy?

“Well, that’s pretty close right there. I think he’s really played well. You know, we try to make our living here on sacks, TFLs, living that approach, and you look at the numbers at the end of the day and he’s right up there in the TFL piece for sure, so I think he’s playing at a very, very solid level.”

Do you have different levels? Do you have like a guy, a man—

“Oh yeah.”

What are they?

“You know, you’re a Guy, and that’s your first start. Then, you know, if you’re really playing well, then you give ‘em Dude status, and then you give ‘em the competing animal status, so there’s your three levels of it. Being a dude’s not easy to do, now. I mean, that’s pretty high esteem.”

How do you approach the challenge of not only trying to slow JT Barrett but also the fact that they have the two really talented running backs?

“Yeah, they’re good. You know, the bottom line is you’ve got to pick your poison and you’ve got to stand for something. Some guys try to sit there and spread out and cover everything and that’s one approach. Some people try to read and react and that’s another approach. Obviously we try to do it all and make it tough on them. So, that’s our goal.

“But you got to stand for something. I can’t tell you what that is, but you’ve got to stand for something. You just can’t let ‘em pick you apart and move you down the field. That’s not going to happen anyway, so our approach is always try to be on the aggressive side of things, but at the same time, you’ve got to be intelligent.”

[After THE JUMP: the best practice of the season, not cheating the game, and playing with an X on your chest]

Wednesday Presser 11-1-17: Don Brown

Wednesday Presser 11-1-17: Don Brown

Submitted by Adam Schnepp on November 2nd, 2017 at 12:28 PM

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[Barron]

What do you see from Minnesota that you’re preparing for?

“Well, they’re gonna run the rock. Their mantra, you can tell, is they’re big, strong. I think the best offensive line we’ve played to this point in terms of run blocking, and they’ve got multiple running backs that can carry the load so we’ve got to do a great job in controlling the run game and then obviously doing a good job on third down from our standpoint.”

With Aubrey Solomon getting the start, what did he do to earn that start?

“Wow. Just a big boy growing up. He’s learned the system, he’s minimizing errors, and he’s kind of solidifying himself as a solid guy we can depend on on a three-down basis. And it’s not rocket science. I mean, on third down, we’ll do whatever we want to do anyway to get off the field, so with some of those things he’s involved and some of ‘em he’s not involved, but he’s a tremendous run defender and a very solid pass defender.”

On that second touchdown drive against Rutgers they hit a couple plays where your guys were right there on them. Is that going to happen and are there times where you as a coordinator just tip your cap?

“Well, I tip my cap on the pass. The kid made a one-handed catch. I thought Tyree was in great shape. You want to be able to lean into him and go through his hands and all that but at the end of that day it was like that [mimes a one-handed catch away from the body].

“So, you know, the bottom line is… let me paint a picture for you. You’re in zone coverage, okay? And we played a bunch, by the way, last Saturday, but we play combination coverages so guys are—we don’t want guys running free. We don’t want, oh we’re in zone, this guy dropped him. We’re not doing that, okay? So I’d rather spend my time teaching great technique, great fundamentals, let B. Smith and Mike Zordich do their deal and also be able to mix in, when we decide, other concepts that will cover people. Not people running through air and then relying on those zone pieces. I mean, that’s just not what we do.

[I had to split this answer with THE JUMP because posting novellas to the front page during the season is discouraged]

Mattress Talk

Mattress Talk

Submitted by Brian on October 23rd, 2017 at 12:00 PM

10/21/2017 – Michigan 13, Penn State 42 – 5-2, 2-2 Big Ten

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I'm still trying to figure out how this is a wicked burn [Patrick Barron]

Got a new mattress. Wife had been saying we should get one, and then I read this article about the crazy Online Mattress War between dudes who had gotten millions of dollars in affiliate sales as mattress reviewers and a leading mattress company that sued them. The company was kind of right that the mattress guys were not fully on the up and up, but neither was the company. The twist ending: company just bought the site and magically their problems were over, man.

Everyone wins, except the average Joe just looking for an honest mattress review. Insofar as that is possible. Which it's not for an idiosyncratic product that is supposed to hold up for years and years.

This article still convinced me that I should just buy a mattress online, because any industry that has people in that level of desperate hand-to-hand combat is a place where The Online is legitimately disruptive. Also I went into an Art Van once and felt like I needed a shower after I left. I bought one office chair. Guy said I was making an amazing choice buying this office chair. I had an incredible eye for office chairs. Nobody in the world could have picked out an office chair finer than the one I had just acquired, and at such a price. And so forth and so on.

So: I am sold that mattresses are vastly overpriced and open to disruption. Also I am the kind of person who would rather roll the dice on Amazon reviews than talk to someone who works on commission. So I went with the company at the beginning of the article that purveyed a mattress the vaguely shady review guy returned. They were not mentioned again and thus seemed to be more on the up and up than everyone else. I dislike angle shooters.

Here is an internet mattress. It comes in a white box that seems far too small for a mattress. After you hack through an Amazon's worth of plastic coverings to unroll it there is a final layer of protective covering. Pierce that with the steak knife you've commandeered and the mattress will take in a great gulp of air, like a drowning man who suddenly finds himself at the surface. Then you have a mattress.

It's springy. Good? I don't know? I slept on it. It was fine.

It is odd somehow, but that's probably not its fault. It's probably always odd to get a new mattress. It's doubly so for us since the monstrosity we are replacing is an old hand-me-down "pillow top" that's like a foot taller than this thing. The hand-me-down is the 1955 Buick of mattresses. It could double as a boat or siege weapon. You couldn't put it in a trebuchet unless you wanted to flatten something three feet away, but it would do quite well as a battering ram. Nice and roomy underneath. The padding above would mute the impacts of various rocks, arrows, and other sundry implements of murder being flung at your head. The tag you're not supposed to take off swears that flammability is not an issue. And when you get that thing going, momentum is going to take you right through that door. Have fun storming the castle!

Anyway, the placement of the reading lights in our bedroom now makes way more sense.

----------------------------------------------

The child—who goes by Denard Robinson Cook on the internet because I want his Google results to be his fault, not mine—lost his mind at this whole procedure. One of the great challenges of deploying the internet mattress was getting the little goober off the box spring long enough to simultaneously have a bed and an un-suffocated child.

He bangs the box spring and finds its texture pleasing. "BANG," he says, sort of. Getting the plastic off the mattress is a longer than expected, so he runs off to look at the old mattress, which is not in the spot it's been literally his whole life. "OH WOW," he says, distinctly and repeatedly. When the mattress arrived he pointed at the box and exclaimed "OH WOW" for two solid minutes, at varying levels of intensity. The intensity varied from much to lots.

Perhaps he has been raised to find beds and bedding to be a delight. Later I would discover that when my wife makes the bed there has evolved a certain strange ritual. There are four pillows, and after each is sheathed in its cover the wife will promise the child a "boof," which consists of whacking him surprisingly hard in the face with the pillow and throwing it on the bed. The child falls to the ground, cackling merriment, and gets up demanding to be boofed again.

After the pillows are all on the bed the child is thrown onto it, whereupon he flings himself onto every nook and cranny mutter-yelling "boof." Should an adult have the temerity to join the child on the bed, he or she will be shooed away. The child will cry "ah-weigh" until the offense is repaired, and then resume boofing itself.

This was the only part of the mattress procedure with an unpleasant whiff. It is now clear that the child enjoys throwing himself headlong at things, and having things hurled headlong at himself. He thus might want to play football, which is a sport of no account whatsoever that all thinking people rightly condemn.

AWARDS

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Higdon, not Long above[Eric Upchurch]

Known Friends And Trusted Agents Of The Week

-2535ac8789d1b499[1]you're the man now, dog

#1 David Long? I guess? Long intercepted a pass on PSU's third drive, forestalling the beat down until the second half. He was considerably assisted in this endeavor by a Penn State miscommunication, but the other choices here are guys with under 50 yards of offense or other members of a defense that didn't do great. On a day when Michigan got bombed, just one tackle for Long is probably a good thing.

#2 Karan Higdon? Averaged three yards a carry and this felt sort of noble in the circumstances, with half his carries buried at the line by a defense with no respect for the pass and another fair chunk actually decent.

#3 Khaleke Hudson? I guess? TFL, PBU, and a QB hurry, whatever that means in the box score. Notably did not get torched by anyone unless my memory has failed me, which, thanks, memory. Doin' me a solid.

Honorable mention:

KFaTAotW Standings.

8: Devin Bush (#1 Florida, T2 Cincinnati, T2 Air Force, #1 Purdue)
5: Chase Winovich(#1 Air Force, #2a Purdue), Mo Hurst (#1 MSU, #2(T), Indiana), Karan Higdon (#1 Indiana, #2 PSU)
4: David Long (T3 Indiana, #1 PSU)
3: Mason Cole (#1, Cincinnati), Ty Isaac (#2, Florida, #3 Cincinnati), Lavert Hill(#2 MSU, T3 Indiana))
2: Quinn Nordin (#3 Florida, #3 Air Force), John O'Korn (#2 Purdue), Rashan Gary(T2 Indiana), Khaleke Hudson (T2 Cincinnati, #3 PSU).
1: Tyree Kinnel (T2 Cincinnati), Mike McCray(T2 Air Force), Sean McKeon(T3 Purdue), Zach Gentry (T3 Purdue), Brad Robbins(#3 MSU), Brandon Watson (T3 Indiana).

Who's Got It Better Than Us Of The Week

Michigan punches in a touchdown from the six by loading up in a three-TE set and manballing it in with power. This briefly saw Michigan come within a point and was the last event in the game that could be read as hopeful.

Honorable mention: David Long's INT; other touchdown; several plays on which PSU did not score a touchdown.

imageMARCUS HALL EPIC DOUBLE BIRD OF THE WEEK.

Quinn Nordin misses an extra point, which made it clear that it was about to be that kind of night.

Honorable mention: Most of the rest of the game. Saquon Barkley's opening touchdown rather stands out amongst the writhing mass of events. About one minute in to the game everyone was like "okay this is a huge loss," and they were eventually correct. Would rather that did not happen.

[After the JUMP: mattress SEO mattress links mattress reviews mattress coupons mattress mattress]

Upon Further Review 2017: Defense vs Indiana

Upon Further Review 2017: Defense vs Indiana

Submitted by Brian on October 19th, 2017 at 3:31 PM

2017 logoo_thumbSPONSOR NOTES. Matt's on his way to Penn State as we speak, thinking no doubt about various ways in which US Soccer's surplus can be spent effectively: reducing the cost of A-level coaching licenses, supporting youth clubs that produce USMNT players, building a giant statue of Sunil Gulati being devoured by wolves. Maybe I'm projecting. I'm probably projecting.

Matt's probably thinking about ways to get your mortgage quote even faster, like inventing a time machine or hiring really fast donkeys. Because he gets you quotes fast, like a competent person not in charge of US soccer does.

FORMATION NOTES. Another 60-40 split between the stack package and a four-man line. 31 four man line snaps of which Mone probably got 25, with Dwumfour in on passing downs. 4-3 snaps went down 3 against a spread offense.

Michigan is deploying some dime now, with all three CBs on the field simultaneously. I had them for 11 dime snaps.

Indiana was all spread, never under center. Here is a picture of Indiana:

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Other than the usual diet of weird line alignments on passing downs this was basically what you'd expect.

SUBSTITUTION NOTES. Secondary was the usual: Kinnel and Metellus omnipresent except for a play or two after Kinnel got dinged when Woods came in. Thomas and Glasgow both got a few snaps. CBs rotated through snaps, with a half-dozen or so snaps where all three were on the field.

Bush was omnipresent; McCray nearly so except in the immediate aftermath of a cut block when Gil got a play.

Michigan again rotated between two of Hudson, Furbush, and Mone, with the 3-3-5 set far more common than alternatives. Uche got a few of Hudson/Furbush's snaps in the second quarter. The DL did see some rotation, with Solomon, Kemp, Marshall and Dwumfour all getting scattered snaps. Winovich did not come off the field; Dwumfour was usually in as a fourth DL on passing downs instead of Mone.

[After THE JUMP: bolded alter-ego can't maintain the fiction any longer!]

Wednesday Presser 9-20-17: Chris Partridge

Wednesday Presser 9-20-17: Chris Partridge

Submitted by Adam Schnepp on September 21st, 2017 at 8:31 AM

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[Fuller]

Talk about Devin’s play through the first three games and how well he’s played.

“He’s played great. He’s really locked in mentally. He’s explosive, he’s running around the field, he’s becoming a leader. He’s [doing] exactly what we asked from him and what we expected. We saw it in him in the spring and in camp and everything like that.”

On kickoffs, obviously you want more in the kick return game. What can you do there to kind of make that better?

“Kick return?”

Yeah.

“Kick return’s a very difficult thing to do, to block guys that are running full speed. I feel pretty confident about it. I know you haven’t seen the product, but we’ve gotten guys that are gaining valuable experience. It takes a while to get the knack of it and I think we’ve got the guys in place now that will be able to open some stuff up. I feel pretty confident that you’ll see some explosive plays out of that phase coming up here soon.”

Is Kekoa still going to be the guy or have you opened that up a little bit?

“Um. it’s always open. It’s always open. If he’s not returning for touchdowns then it’s an open competition, it’s an open battle. He’s still back there, as are others.”

Donovan, I assume, could get a look?

“Yep, he’s in the battle too. Yes.”

We saw in the Cincinnati game every time Donovan would come off the field it was like you were right there with him having conversations. How big of a leap did he take from that week? Obviously we saw him score the touchdown, but mentally how did he respond?

“Yeah, it’s enormous. To me, I think that catching a punt outside in an open environment like that is the hardest thing to do because the wind takes it, the ball takes it. For a freshman to have to do that, those game reps are invaluable. We can do everything we want in practice, but when all the pressure’s there and people are humping down and in college football everybody’s releasing everybody, those reps are invaluable.

“He just continues to lock it in and get better at it. It’s funny: you don’t want that stuff to happen, but that happening is going to make him so much better moving forward here. I have 100% confidence, coach Harbaugh has 100% confidence in him. He’s going to be an explosive playmaker back there. He’s just got to work through some things. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.”

[Hit THE JUMP for some boggling Nordin numbers, more on DPJ, and confirmation of Don Brown's precognitive powers ]

Wednesday Presser 9-20-17: Don Brown

Wednesday Presser 9-20-17: Don Brown

Submitted by Adam Schnepp on September 20th, 2017 at 6:00 PM

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[Fuller]

You’ve got to be pretty pleased through three games with the way your guys are playing.

“Three really unique challenges. Obviously Florida with their ability, and despite them having two top-notch players out they still have a lot of firepower and I thought we did a good job going into that environment for our first trip on the road. That was kind of the piece that I was most concerned about was young guys on the road for the first time, how were we gonna respond? Obviously things didn’t quite go our way in the beginning but stayed really even-keeled. Just kind of kept playing the game, stayed in the moment, and kept executing at what I thought was a very, very high level. We really kept the pressure on the quarterback, so that was week one.

“Cincinnati really did a good job with their rub routes. I don’t know if that’s the legal term but I think that’s what the offensive guys call it, rub routes. They did a good job with the screen game. I was unhappy with a couple of the blocks but the reality is those tunnel screens are tough and I gotta do a better job in making sure we’re ready to play those.

“And then flip your hat, and I really tip my hat to my guys: Tuesday and Wednesday we took 230 snaps of option football. The gameplan was called on the line of scrimmage because they’re a team that has certain formations where they’re going to run the triple and other formations where they’re not gonna run option football, so everything’s all on the line of scrimmage getting called and I think we had one error. That was pretty good.

“But three different, unique challenges. The piece that’s really stuck out to me through the first three games is we can run, now. We’re pretty fast, and we get off blocks and run to the football as well as any group I’ve been around. That’s kind of a good thing. Forget the scheme and all that nonsense. It’s when guys can get off blocks, run to the football, and one of the things that doesn’t go unnoticed, at least from my perspective, is I think we’ve tackled really, really well. Sometimes early in the year that’s not always the case, but it has been the case for us for the first three weeks.”

[There’s so much good stuff after THE JUMP, just click already]