Michigan State 29, Michigan 6 Comment Count

Ace November 2nd, 2013 at 7:41 PM

Bryan Fuller/MGoBlog

Michigan had two weeks to prepare for Michigan State. This resulted in a record-setting day.

It takes a special kind of failure to achieve such lows: complete, utter failure from top to bottom. The gameplan from Al Borges lacked coherence, an issue that's plagued him during his entire tenure at Michigan. The play-action from under center isn't fooling anyone and still gets brought out several times a game, yet the shotgun runs somehow lack any sort of constraint or misdirection. A piecemeal offense isn't going to beat MSU's defense.

The offensive line couldn't open up holes for the running game, nor could they keep Devin Gardner upright. MSU registered nine sacks, and even with that yardage removed along with kneeldowns and a negative-20-yard bad snap, the Wolverines mustered 1.3 yards per carry.

Gardner often held the ball too long, for his part, and missed some open receivers, then capped the performance with an ugly interception when he hucked a designed back-shoulder fade three yards in front of Jeremy Gallon. By that point, however, he'd earned considerable respect simply for standing up and facing the inevitable beating.

Eric Upchurch/MGoBlog

Michigan mustered 168 yards on a meager 2.8 yards per play despite Gardner averaging nearly eight yards per pass when he could actually get one off. The defense fought valiantly, holding the Spartans to just 237 yards and 16 points through three quarters and setting up the offense with a chance to make it a game when Raymon Taylor picked off Connor Cook and returned it to the MSU 41. The Wolverines subsequently took a five-yard loss on an blown-up option followed by consecutive sacks—burning a timeout before the second one—to lose 21 yards in three plays; a Matt Wile punt, his eighth of the afternoon, opened the fourth quarter.

By the time Jeremy Langford capped the scoring with a 40-yard touchdown run, Devin Gardner's day was done—it would've been unconscionable to put him out there for another possession—and fans from both sides steadily streamed out of Spartan Stadium.

On Michigan's final offensive play of the game, Shane Morris tried to scramble on fourth-and-four, only to faceplant at the line of scrimmage. It was a fitting coda to a miserable day.


Blue Durham

November 2nd, 2013 at 10:03 PM ^

that your reply is quite interesting.

Not at Michigan.

Rodriguez was successful everywhere he coached. Even now at Arizona.

But not at Michigan.

So, where and what is the problem? And does the answer to this question have relevance today?

Was the problem Rodriguez, or the present culture at Michigan?

Given the culture and its choice of coaching staff at Michigan, can the football team really compete for Big 10 championships (I'm not going to even entertain national championships) against Urban Meyer's Ohio State, MSU, Nebraska, or even Wisconsin or Penn State?

Akron and UConn were an indication.

I think we just got our answer in East Lansing. On November 30th, that answer is going to be very painfully apparent.

snarling wolverine

November 2nd, 2013 at 11:10 PM ^

RichRod's problem wasn't so much the culture as the defense.  Insisting on the 3-3-5 when neither of his DCs wanted to run it (or understood it) was his undoing.

At Arizona, as at WVU, he has a rare 3-3-5 guru in Jeff Casteel, which helps.  Still, I don't think they're a league contender or anything like that, just a bowl team.




November 2nd, 2013 at 11:23 PM ^

that RR was ousted after 3 years but "Hoke absolutely deserves 5 years" is pretty damn interesting.  4 years should be the minimum HC contract barring scandal and complete nosedives.  (FULL DISCLOSURE: I thought RR should have gottena 4th year with a $ upgraded defensive coordinator.  Hell, I would have even given John L a 4th year had he been Michigan's coach).  
But "blah blah toughness" gets you automatically 5?
This IS the same point in RR's 3rd year when the wheels fell off at PSU.
No way in hell should Hoke automatically get 5 years, show me the serious improvement or I'm screaming for a major review at the end of '14
I've said this often before but Michigan has become Notre Dame.


November 3rd, 2013 at 12:45 AM ^

Yeah, because Michigan was too cheap to spend the bucks to bring Casteel here with him. Seems like RR and Casteel are doing pretty well in Arizona in their second year. It's a systemic problem at Michigan mainly due to arrogance and an unrealistic emphasis on past performance.


November 2nd, 2013 at 10:08 PM ^

Can't believe I'm saying this but I agree. It is clear to me now that Hoke is a recruiter that then delegates the details.  RR, minus his D scheme that was destined to fail in the B10, could offensively scheme for any situation.  Look at the offensive #s from his stint they are beyond reproach.  I would also say that there is something to be said about having a group of guys that have had 2years of college strength and conditioning going against guys that have had 4.  Bosch looked 'fat', not on him, he's just not been developed. Against a D that comes after it like state experience and time in the weight room are paramount.

snarling wolverine

November 2nd, 2013 at 11:14 PM ^

RR, minus his D scheme that was destined to fail in the B10, could offensively scheme for any situation. Look at the offensive #s from his stint they are beyond reproach.

Not every situation. Ohio had his offense snuffed out all three times, as did Miss State (coached by Manny Diaz of all people). He didn't do a whole lot better against MSU, either - and they weren't as good defensively as they are now.

RichRod's a good offensive guy overall, yes. But he wasn't running some kind of Oregon-like offensive machine, or he'd still be here.


November 2nd, 2013 at 8:06 PM ^

It amazes me the lack of identity, chemisty and structure this team has.  I actually had to turn the channel a few times just to relieve some of the stress.  Seems to be a reoccurring trend lately.


November 2nd, 2013 at 8:07 PM ^

I hope someone has the nerve to ask Brady some tough questions about why these kids got embarrassed before everybody back home.  And why his All-America and captain wasn't taught the discipline even to avoid the kind of penalty MSU had formerly been famous for and which is committed almost always out of selfishness.


November 2nd, 2013 at 8:11 PM ^

Keep in mind this MSU team is at best above average if you compare them to most of the top ten teams. Given how they dominated us today, where does this put the Michigan program?

Hoke and company have failed many of these highly recruited players. I am seriously concerned future recruits will avoid Michigan knowing the poor coaching staff which will be developing them.

This was an epic beat down and what makes it worst is the Michigan vowed not to let what happened in 2011 happen to them again. This beating was worst than 2011.


Ohio son michi…

November 2nd, 2013 at 8:08 PM ^

Why would we give up on this staff look who they are bring in here.time people name me some coach who love's us more then hoke did we for get rich rod them players that left that didn't pan out think about the line we could had if Brady was here the whole time we are looking at this the wrong way michigan pride we need to stand up and fight for this team and staff because everybody will be back next year even Devin Gardner

His Dudeness

November 2nd, 2013 at 8:09 PM ^

We can all agree we have better talent than MSU. So where does that leave us?


We hired our third option. Because he would "crawl to Ann Arbor" and "didn't talk about salary."

We'll maybe there is a reason for that.

Also, fuck recruiting. Kalis was a 5 star and he looks like he has regressed since high school. Maybe we need a real coach. Recruiting doesn't mean shit if you can't coach. Look at lane Kifin.

Bando Calrissian

November 2nd, 2013 at 8:13 PM ^

But do we have better talent, both physically and mentally? Michigan State looked more physical. They looked poised. They looked ready. Our guys consistently look overmatched, emotionally disengaged, chippy, and disinterested. For my money, the talent on the field today was on the Spartan side of the ball, sorry to say.


November 2nd, 2013 at 8:10 PM ^

I'm tired of hearing it's because Rich Rod's guys are still there! Or we are young, and need time to develop. In this day and age, you are good, or you are not good! Did Johnny football need to develop in the almighty SEC? What about Jameis Winston? He is young! Is Urban Meyer an "Ohio" guy, or does he just fucking win football games?


November 2nd, 2013 at 9:20 PM ^

Acceptance stage here.

MSU had the hungrier, better prepared team today.

That UM lost, not a surprise. But a 23 pt decisive loss confirms everything we already new from the Akron game. Close losses would tell us a different story. The football program at Michigan is regressing.

Meanwhile, just look at Michigans rivals fergodsakes.


November 2nd, 2013 at 9:48 PM ^

it was 16-6 with us driving late in the 3rd.

Wanna get angry?  Look at the quotes from the MSU coaches after the game...

The true issue is we lack confidence.  I think that stems from a poor senior leader class.  Some is coaching but some is peer expectations 



November 2nd, 2013 at 8:11 PM ^

We are all Michigan fans, but the turth of the matter is that Coach Hoke is not the right man for the job and he must go. He has failed. He can't develop a QB (failed twice) and he is is a .500 coach on the road. This simply will not get it done. Michigan must replace him before the recruits start to jump.

Blue X2

November 2nd, 2013 at 8:12 PM ^

Michigan fans are among the most loyal and active in the FBS.  We spend a pile of money on apparel, tickets, ridiculous seat "donations" and we get this for a return on our loyalty.  Unbelievably disappointing.  there needs to be some serious ass kicking going on inside this program.  The performance of this team for what we are paying for this program and coaches is totally unacceptable.  If this were a business and this pathetic display was our product we would be out of business.  Kick some asses Dave Brandon.  We deserve much better than this!!!


November 2nd, 2013 at 8:15 PM ^

The time for stay the course is over. Any coach speak after this is just plain horse shit. Something needs to change drastically, because we'll never win a B1G championship setting worst all-time Michigan rushing performance records multiple times a season..


November 2nd, 2013 at 8:14 PM ^

Will not blame players, ever. Limited to 20 hours a week, coaches cannot expect fresman to pick up complicated schemes on either side of the ball. You forget how much talent is on this roster. DG was the #1 ranked dual threat QB a few years back. Where's Green? Kalis and Magnuson? We aren't missing in our evaluation, our coaches are just awful. Mallory, Funk, Borges, Hoke & Mattison (DL? No pressure until it didnt matter) MSU has it right defensively, simple packages executed to perfection. Borges is slowly pushing my anger towards Hoke, who is allowing this to continue, week after week. Head(set) less. They've already destroyed Devin Gardner, putting him in a bad system set to fail, then making him seem like he's the problem so that now his decision making is all out of whack. Throwing Shane Morris into a lose lose situation on 4th down was even more disturbing to me. Just punt it or at least put Cleary in there. You can do some major damage to a QB's confidence on the road in that kind of environment. (Bellomy, anyone?) Hoke needs to make some changes to this coaching staff ASAP. This isn't a wait till the end of the season kind of thing. Of course, we have a situation where our OC is also our QB coach, so making a change would likely make things worse.

If Hoke can somehow still get a committment from Hand and keep the one from Peppers, he should really be untouchable, because obviously he is a Jedi. *Waves hand* You will commit to Michigan.


November 2nd, 2013 at 8:16 PM ^

Hoke is 1-2 against MSU and is about to become 1-2 against OSU.  Thanksfully, Michigan will only see OSU once this year.  This was embarrassing today.  This was worse than Rich Rods embarrassing performances against MSU.  Hoke's teams have failed to score a TD in 10 quarters against MSU.  What a joke, fire Hoke!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

coastal blue

November 3rd, 2013 at 4:10 PM ^

Why are the blocking failures of our young offensive line in 2013 simply about youth/inexperience/lack of talent? But our tackling or coverage failures in 2010 were about bad coaching, even though the young talent is better on today's offensive line than it was in the 2010 secondary? 

Youth is a problem. But much like that defense, there needs to be a change and Funk is the bare minimum. Borges is now coaching these last 4 games for his job.