Down a corner, but which Big Ten QB- WR is super scary?

Submitted by Harmonnj on August 18th, 2010 at 2:32 PM
Horrible news about T-Wolf, but it happened so UM must move on and persevere. I am sitting here pondering who we should be really afraid of in the Big Ten now that we are working with one shoddy corner and a high 4 star high school kid. I look around and I see at the top of the Big Ten there are smash mouth teams, not finesse/ pro-style teams that want to go one on one with their receiver against your corner.

Iowa- Wants to Run, then thrown to wide open tight ends.
Wisc- Pounds the Ground, throw to tight end.
OSU- Scare you with Pryor, thrown wobbly pass 40 yards down middle of field- have receiver run under the ball.
PSU-Run Royster to Record- QB's have no experience.
Indiana- Good trio of WRs, but seems like they like to run from pistol more often than not. Can Chappel get enough time to throw?
ND-Floyd is really scary, but who knows if Crist will be able to get up after Martin eats his heart.
Purdue- Pass spread attack, breaking in New QB

I am pretty upset with losing T-Wolf, but on the bright side I don't see elite WR/QB combo talent that we should be so super scared about. Last year we were torched by very talented Big Ten tight ends. Improved LB play should help there.

Stop the run, then help those cover guys by zone blitzing on the 3rd and longs. Offense can really help out by getting up early, closing out games, and munching on that clock.



August 18th, 2010 at 2:40 PM ^

Yet last year it was Clausen to Floyd/Tate, and I find that certainly more scary. True we had Warren but opposite him Cissoko was getting torched. We managed to win then, hopefully we can do it again.


August 18th, 2010 at 5:34 PM ^

"Dominating" might be a little strong, but we did hold MSU almost 10 points under its season average in regulation, and three of their points came after the ill-timed Zoltan fake.  Considering that they had a gigantic edge in time of possession (due to our offense going 3-and-out on most possessions in the first three quarters), our D held up quite well.  It didn't give up any big pass plays and shut down the run until the very last play of the game.


August 18th, 2010 at 3:15 PM ^

Not to mention that g-d drive in the first quarter that covered something like 120 yards including all Sparties penalty yardage. Didn't we have something  like 8 offensive plays in the entire first half?


August 18th, 2010 at 2:53 PM ^

They put up over 400 yards and their first TD was something like a net 120 yard drive. They had 3 or 4 PF calls and still scored a TD.

Their OL sucks. Have to get to the QB this year.

I root against msu as much as the next guy but lets not bury our heads in the sand.


August 18th, 2010 at 3:13 PM ^

where we held them to punt after punt and I believe a fumble and int as well.

since this conversation has to do with THROWING the ball...and they were a combined 29 attempts for barely 200 yards, no TD's, and 2 INT's, I stand by dominated.

And yes, this is a different day and age of college football. If you can hold a team to 20 points in regulation you did a very good job.


August 18th, 2010 at 2:51 PM ^

Because they are probably going to be pretty good at throwing the rock this year, and we are probably going to be pretty bad at stopping the throw.  Use logic instead of hubris to guide your thoughts.


August 18th, 2010 at 2:58 PM ^

in last year's game; I don't think of being scared of Cousins throwing the ball.  All I can think of is the 120 yard opening drive, in which I think they ran for most of those yards and hit some long third downs. I see Dantonio and I think he would rather run than pass. Run Run, Run, play action pass. Not line up 3 wide and torch our corners, but I guess they can now since we lost our "good" corner.

That is my Logic. When I think of scary QB-WR combos. MSU just isn't in my top 5.


August 18th, 2010 at 3:07 PM ^

They didn't need to pass. They racked up almost 200 yards on the ground and were leading 20-6 with to start the 4th quarter. Why would you pass?

As the poster above said, put down the macho attitude. moo u had one of the top offenses in the big ten last year and they only lost a few O-linemen and white.

If we can throw at all we should put up at least 35 on them. Their secondary is one injury away from being as bad as ours.


August 18th, 2010 at 5:40 PM ^

They weren't dominating on the ground.  Most of their yards came on designed pass plays - Cousins turned into a scrambling madman that day, rushing for like 80 yards.  On designed running plays they struggled all day until the game's final play.

Transatlantic Flight

August 18th, 2010 at 2:52 PM ^

If you are going to take that attitude, why bother evaluating anyone at all? Omitting the one team other than Notre Dame that is going to rely on a passing attack to do damage is stupid. Rivalries are what they are, but underestimate your opponents at your own peril. Hopefully by week 6 the young corners have been broken in enough to break up some of those passing plays, otherwise we could be seriously screwed.


August 18th, 2010 at 2:43 PM ^

Floyd will be dominant against our secondary. Also, MSU could give us troubles as everyone else says. A lot of the teams have new quarterbacks so it's a tough call


August 18th, 2010 at 2:44 PM ^

I see your point, but I think that there is a flaw in your reasoning.  You say that you "don't see elite WR/QB combo talent that we should be so super scared about."  The problem with our secondary is that we might get killed by a NON-ELITE WR/QB combo.

An elite QB / WR combo (see ND last year) will pick apart most defenses, including those that have decent CBs.  However, our CBs may be such a liability that even average QB/WR combos can pick them apart. 

Also, on the team by team analysis:

Iowa- "Wants to Run" - yes, but if their receivers are open, they will pass.  See last year's game.

Wisc- "Pounds the Ground, throw to tight end" - agree, but they do have decent enough WRs that they will throw to them if they are open.

OSU- "Scare you with Pryor, thrown wobbly pass 40 yards down middle of field- have receiver run under the ball." - OSU's receivers are almost all 4 or 5* studs.  Yes, Pryor's throwing game has been suspect, but if those receivers get open - and if I am betting on junior and senior elite WRs against freshmen CBs, my bet is on the WRs - Pryor will get them the ball.

PSU-"Run Royster to Record- QB's have no experience" - Sort of with you on this one, but we play them late in the year, so the QB will have some experience.

Indiana- "Good trio of WRs, but seems like they like to run from pistol more often than not. Can Chappel get enough time to throw?" - with our lack of depth, a trio of receivers seems deadly, regardless of how much time Chappel has. 

ND-"Floyd is really scary, but who knows if Crist will be able to get up after Martin eats his heart."  Christ was a super-stud recruit.  Yes, young, coming off of an injury, but with Floyd and the other 5* offensive talent, their offense scares the crap out of me with Kelly at the helm.

Purdue- "Pass spread attack, breaking in New QB." - with you - Purdue sort of sucks, but they put up a bunch of points on us last year, and that was when we had D. Warren, T-Wolf and a guy names B. Graham.



August 18th, 2010 at 3:20 PM ^

You're completely right in your analysis but even you have left some things out.  You forgot to mention Wisconsin as they have Nick Toon, one of the better receivers in the Big Ten.  Also, with Notre Dame, you didn't really call out the OP for the wide open hole in his argument.  To support Martin and our team is well and good, and I'm glad that the OP is excited as he is, but Martin will be lucky to average 6 sacks this year.  Face it, he's a DT playing NT, they just don't get high stats.  Kelly's offense is pass heavy.  They have one of the best receivers if not THE best receiver in the county in Floyd.  Notre Dame is going to slaughter us offensively this year.  Our only hope to win that game is that we can score 50 or more.


August 18th, 2010 at 2:44 PM ^

Umm, if you had been paying attention and reading your ESPN, you would know that Marve is only slightly below Dayne Crist on the "Best QB in the Universe...EVER" scale.

UM Indy

August 18th, 2010 at 2:45 PM ^

it's time to worry about EVERY QB-WR combo on our schedule.  I'm not trying to be dramatic, cynical, depressing, etc.  In other words, NO SUGAR COAT.  This is scary, scary stuff guys.  This D was going to be shaky WITH Woolfolk back there.  I'm sitting here right now wondering how in the hell we better our record from last year.


August 18th, 2010 at 2:45 PM ^

ND, Purdue (assuming Mavre is good enough), and MSU and IU are the biggest threats to benefit greatly from Woolfolk's injury.

I think ND's Floyd is the big winner in Woolfolk's injury - maybe the only true deep threat receiver we'll face all year, and Crist is good enough to chuck it deep and let Floyd adjust. 

Besides that, IU and MSU will throw everywhere, including deep.. .but both O-Lines will be weak so a good pass rush should keep the deep ball threats in check. 

Mavre is the wildcard -- if he can prove he has the ability to throw deep they have the O-line and WRs to take advantage.  Obviously by week 10 we'll know if he is real or not (or if he's still even starting) so there will be no mystery as to what our CBs will be facing

UCONN?  Not sure they benefit from the lack of Woolfolk.  Obviously they will rely on the running game so if they can establish the run it will expose our CBs to the deep ball.  I assume this was UCONN's game plan pre-injury, so, now it is just a matter of execution on their part to take advantage of the youth/inexperience at CB.  However, if we stop the run and they have to rely on the pass... then our pass rush assists our CBs considerably (which hopefully will be the key to our defense all season). 

Big Boutros

August 18th, 2010 at 2:46 PM ^

Michigan State is a guaranteed Danger Zone re: opposing passing offenses. The efficiency of Notre Dame through the air is anyone's guess. Wisconsin's strength is always in their offensive line, so if our defensive strength is neutralized, Tolzien will have a lot of time to do what he wants. Indiana runs that goofy pistol. Ohio State is pretty much rock solid at every position. But I'll go full homer and just say Purdue sucks and I don't much care what kind of offense they run. Color me uninterested.

I'd be most afraid of those five offenses.


August 18th, 2010 at 2:47 PM ^

The only ones I'd consider "scary" are:

Crist to Floyd (ND).

Chappel to Doss (Indiana).

Pryor to Posey (OSU).

The others - I'm not worried about them.  I mean, look at our schedule last year.  We got beat on the ground most of the time - not the air. 

What happened yesterday is not good and will probably cost us 1-2 games this year if someone cannot step up (calling Cullen).  However, it doesn't make us a 3-9 team again. 


August 18th, 2010 at 5:42 PM ^

I would add Cousins to Martin to that list.  Martin is very fast and Cousins has excellent accuracy.  Our pass rush was able to prevent them from attempting many deep balls last year.  We're going to need to have similar success up front.


August 18th, 2010 at 2:47 PM ^

MSU is probably the most important game this year. and Cousins does scare me a little bit, especially now with T-Wolf gone. I am sure we will here a ton more very soon from RR on our secondary issues and the progression of the freshman

gpsimms not to…

August 18th, 2010 at 2:51 PM ^

to me, the teams to worry about are the teams we felt sure we could beat before--Indiana, Purdue, MSU...these teams are all going to throw a lot of passes next year.  Indiana has very athletic wideouts and an experienced QB.  I now think we're going to have a similar-to-last-year-except-even-more-points shootout with Indiana.

Purdue's made our secondary look ridiculous for a few years in a row, and so has state.  Any big ten team we play, we'll have to put up a lot of points to win now.


August 18th, 2010 at 3:08 PM ^

I guess I was trying to figure out a reason to not be so upset with this injury. It is devastating, but I think maybe not as much if the Big Ten were more of a pass happy conference.

Seems like the tone of the thread has moved towards, be afraid of everyone, doom doom doom. Maybe my optimism is for naught.

Ultimate Quizmaster

August 18th, 2010 at 3:03 PM ^

We had trouble withll Big Ten QB-WRs last year, including Indiana. Even if they don't spread the field and destroy us, they can do short passes. Remember the huge gaffes the D made against Iowa and OSU on 3rd and long? Not only are we shaky defending the deep ball, short passes are going to do us in too. We are for sure worse than last year, even if the offense is better. You don't win the Big Ten by trying to score 45 pts/game without a defense. Doesn't work.

B10 or Bust

August 18th, 2010 at 3:18 PM ^

ND, Purdue and MSU will all light up the scoreboard through the air...going to have to keep pace.  The others prefer to run, and have shown in the past that they either don't need to pass a lot, or are too stubborn to give up on a run game that isn't working.

With that said, Wiscy and OSU have to like their matchups against our D.