please stop yelling at me about Gary starting, you win [Eric Upchurch]
Care to offer your guess on how the snaps will be distributed along the defensive line?
I would guess something like this:
Strongside End: 40% Gary, 20% Wormley, 20% Godin
Nose: 55% Glasgow, 45% Mone
3-Tech: 45% Wormley, 45% Hurst, 10% Godin
Weakside End: 65% Charlton, 25% Winovich/Jones/Kemp, 10% formations with only 3 down lineman.
Obviously this exercise assumes no injuries, and I ignored Lawrence Marshall who'll probably see some playing time.
Interested in your take,
Other than the fact that you project only 80% of the strongside end snaps that seems about right to me. (I assume that was meant to be 60% Gary.)
Over this offseason I've gotten a bunch of pushback about my assertion that Gary probably won't start, pushback that now seems on point after various insiders have asserted that Wormley will stick at 3-tech and Charlton will move over to WDE. But that was always a distinction without much of a difference. Even if Gary was nominally behind Wormley at SDE there would be sufficient snaps available when Wormley rests or Michigan goes to a pass rush package for Gary to make an impact. We're talking about a half-dozen snaps per game going to one guy or the other guy.
The only slight corrections I'd make would be to bump Glasgow up to 60 or 65% and bump Charlton to 70% at the expense of three-man lines.
No doubt there's been a recruiting uptick since Harbaugh came aboard....Rashan Gary is nice. But what about our lower ranked pickups? I seem to remember you comparing the success of Tressel 3-stars to Carr 3-stars, and the difference was stark.
Without the benefit of seeing how they pan out, how do you think JH's less-heralded guys will stack up to those of previous regimes? vs. Tressell/Urban? Curious if you've noticed a difference in talent/potential based on film and summer camp performance.
I don't remember that post but there is certainly a difference in quality amongst the vast plain of three-stars, one that's relatively easy to discern. However, that difference isn't based on evaluations I make with my amateur read on Hudl highlight films. It's more about the shape of a kid's recruitment.
There are three stars who end up on the radar of major schools, and three stars who do not. Maybe a Josh Uche or a Nate Johnson comes with sufficient questions for a rating service to correctly peg them a three-star, but it's also correct for teams like Florida or Notre Dame to go after those guys when their plan A gentlemen are uncertain or head elsewhere.
When we're talking about Michigan commits the players in question have tautologically garnered big time interest. That's one vote of confidence; it's better to have other votes from top 25 schools. There's a set of three stars who are targets of multiple big schools and a set who are not. My read on how the 2016 composite three-stars fit in those bins:
- Multiple options: Nick Eubanks, Khaleke Hudson, Nate Johnson, Josh Uche, Eddie McDoom, Elysee Mbem-Bosse, Michael Dwumfour.
- Hard to tell: Kingston Davis.
- Not so much: Sean McKeon, Devin Gil, Josh Metellus, Stephen Spanellis.
I believe everyone in the "multiple options" section could have gone to one of PSU, Florida, Auburn, or Oregon, along with a number of other schools on that level. Davis almost certainly could have gone to Nebraska and maybe LSU or Florida but probably not. The four guys in "not so much" didn't field much if any interest from top-half Power 5 schools. Four guys out of a class of 28 is quite good.
It's hard to get a solid read on the number of comparable prospects in earlier classes. Awareness of the "offer"/OFFER distinction has crept across college football gradually and many earlier recruiting assessments take listed offers at face value when they probably shouldn't. There's more wobble in older assessments, but here's my estimate of the number of Michigan three-stars that didn't seem to get a whole lot of interest from top 20 programs. (I'm not counting MSU here since they only started recruiting like a top 20 team last year and are no longer.) You'll find some excellent players on these lists, but all told it's better to be noticed by more than one big program:
- 2012 (9/22): Matt Godin, Kaleb Ringer, Sione Houma, Jehu Chesson , Drake Johnson, Willie Henry, Ben Braden, Jeremy Clark, Blake Bars. Godin and Bars might have had real interest from Notre Dame.
- 2013 (7/28): Jaron Dukes, Csont'e York, Channing Stribling, Khalid Hill, Da'Mario Jones, Reon Dawson, Scott Sypniewski. I'm leaving out kickers but counting Sypniewski here since long snappers are usually walkons; Harbaugh just got the #2 guy in the country as a PWO. Dan Samuelson and Ross Douglas were Nebraska and PSU decommit three-stars and the only guys in that range who had big time offers.
- 2014 (6/16): Juwann Bushell-Beatty, Wilton Speight, Maurice Ways, Noah Furbush, Brandon Watson, Brady Pallante. Jared Wangler was a PSU decommit.
- 2015 (5/14): Karan Higdon, Grant Perry, Keith Washington, Jon Runyan Jr, Nolan Ulizio. Shelton Johnson was a battle against FSU; Reuben Jones against Nebraska.
Lone wolf fliers comprised over a third of the four Michigan classes before Harbaugh got a full recruiting cycle, and just 14% of the 2016 class. So yes, the 2016 class's three stars are a different caliber.
Given Harbaugh's tendency to rack up decommits it's too early to state with any confidence how many will be in the 2017 class. As of right now I'd put Joel Honigford (Oregon), J'Marick Woods (VT, maybe LSU), Phillip Paea (Oregon), and maybe Andrew Stueber (Tennessee) into the "major target" category" and Ben Mason, Carter Dunaway, Chase Lasater, and Kurt Taylor into the "not so much" category. (I'm assuming Benjamin St Juste ends up a composite four star.)
[After the JUMP: Notre Dame resumption!]
Guy mad about Notre Dame.
If Brandon did this deal, you would be apoplectic. Just give me a reasoned argument as to why they needed to do this deal and screw over season ticket holders ( and logic in general).
I am frankly not impressed with Manuel but am open to giving him a chance. That's a different topic though.
As an impartial journalist, we expect a honest examination of you.
I'm not a journalist, that's the point. I like the Notre Dame series because:
- They are playing Notre Dame
The idea that replacing a game against Arkansas with one against Notre Dame screws over season ticket holders is ludicrous. The home/away setup and October game are wonky, but see #1 above. (Also I don't get the home/away split from ND's perspective.) That's necessary because this is a two-game series starting in 2018 that had to be jammed into the schedule just two years before those games are to be played.
Meanwhile Manuel almost certainly walked into this deal's existing framework and a football coach who wanted the Irish on the schedule and does not give a tenth of a crap about when or where those games occur. I'm not sure what Manuel has even had the opportunity to do that has been "frankly not impressive." He made some comments about not wanting to play night games. That appears to be it. Where does that opinion come from? Jim Harbaugh. If you're the kind of Michigan fan who likes highlighter yellow and night games, real maize and nooners are the cost of doing business with Harbaugh. Manuel's #1 job is cultivating Harbaugh's belief that the Michigan Athletic Department is the best boss ever. As long as he does that everything else is noise.
Non-Harbaugh-maintenance things Manuel has done so far:
- Asked Red to stay another year so he can get his bearings on a hockey coaching search.
- Secured a radio deal that seems much better than the previous one.
- Ushered Brandon's right hand woman Chrissi Rawak out the door.
I'm not a huge fan of the first bullet because there's an obvious replacement tapping his feet but that's 2/3 for me. He's also publicly talking about fixing the MSU/OSU debacle, something Brandon never did. IIRC he said "we can beat them just as easily on the road as at home," because he was a perfect beacon of incompetence. Manuel is not that.
Why it ended in the first place.
I was wondering if you knew the back story behind the UM-ND series being put back on. My understanding was that after ND entered into its set of games with ACC opponents, it had to get rid of a Big Ten team so they decided on Michigan, for whatever reason. What changed since then? At SMSB, Brian Kelly said something along the lines that coaches and ADs were aligned. Was Dave Brandon to blame for the series ending? I really don't think it is, but wanted to know your thoughts. I don't feel like the public backlash about the rivalry ending was so strong that ND had to reverse course. Also, what can we expect the ND series to be moving forward? Will they play every year or intermittently? Thanks for your time, I really enjoy the blog. Go Blue!
-David Harris (NTDH)
There were multiple reasons Notre Dame pulled the trigger on the Michigan series. A primary one: Michigan's contract with Notre Dame was absurdly bad, as it allowed Notre Dame to initiate the end of the series and get the last home game. Brandon didn't write or sign that contract. I don't know who did; it's possible the thing went all the way back to the resumption of the series. Bill Martin had talked a lot about an iron-clad 30 year extension but that never got done, perhaps because ND was already coming to terms with the fact that they'd have to half-join a conference for the sake of their other sports.
I've heard that Notre Dame's combination of loathing and contempt for Brandon also played a major role but that's not a thing you can really confirm or dis-confirm. The nature of the way ND chose to end the series does suggest that's true: instead of sending a letter or whatever, Swarbrick handed Brandon the letter in person just moments before kickoff. Why do that unless you want to see the look on the face of the man you just stabbed?
Whether or not Brandon's personality being to the best of his ability was a major factor in ending the series in the first place, his removal was absolutely necessary for its resumption. Brandon holds grudges.
I don't think a yearly resumption of Michigan-Notre Dame is coming any time soon. Michigan has lined up both VT and Washington in 2020 and 2021 and then starts series with UCLA, Texas, and Oklahoma. Canceling Arkansas is one thing; cancelling any of the latter three series is a much worse idea. I mean, they could sign up to play a nine-game conference schedule along with Texas and Notre Dame, but that would take some huevos.
Hi Brian, two questions about the ND series resumption. First off, are you surprised that the reaction seems to be more negative than positive (at least on the site)? I know it's not ideal to start back in South Bend after their trick last time, but did people honestly expect them to give us a contract with one extra home game? That's millions of dollars they would just be handing over. Brandon made a terrible mistake with that last contract, but it's spilled milk at this point and I don't think you can reasonably expect ND to give that money back. I think this time around had to be a 2 year deal to get it going again and at that point, the order doesn't matter that much in my opinion. And who knows, maybe Harbaugh knows we'll be more of a contender in 2019.
Second, do you agree that we could/should have kept Arkansas even with this ND arrangement? We just would have had to move the 2018 game by a week (or have ND move a Ball State game a week) and the 2019 road game could have stayed as is. I know that would only give us six home games in 2019, but I think the fans and beancounters would understand if four of them were ND, Iowa, MSU, and OSU. Especially considering the $2M buyout they'd save, they would only have to raise the prices a bit in 2019 to get the same projected revenue as 7 games, and it would still be a great value. Do you think the schedule would just become too hard at that point? Thanks as always, keep up the good work.
Manuel made having seven home games every year seem like a big deal to the department, which I don't understand. Cash flow shouldn't be a problem since every year the TV contracts throw off more and more money; by 2018 that nutty FOX deal will be in place. A ticket package of six games with Notre Dame is much better than one with seven and no Notre Dame. Reasons to make absolutely sure you have seven home games seem mostly about presenting a budget to the regents. So I don't get that. Maybe someone who is more educated in these matters could explain in the comments?
Keeping Arkansas is a difficult call. Do you want a nine-game conference schedule, Arkansas, and Notre Dame as 11 of your 12? That's asking a lot. I wonder if Arkansas didn't want to move one of their games and Michigan was forced to pick between the two schools, with Michigan calling their bluff.