Important Year for Rich Rodriguez (Revised)

Submitted by HartFan on June 19th, 2010 at 5:22 AM

The Beginning of an Era

As many of you know by now this year is supposed to be the turn around year for the Michigan Wolverine football program. Rich Rodriguez has had two years to bring his players into the system and get his offense/defense style into effect. The past two years have been dismal but showed improvement from year one to year two. Quarterback Tate Forcier is erratic but shows signs of greatness. We have a strong D-line and an amazing receiving core. All improvements aside, this is the Hot Seat year for Rich Rodriguez. Most of the players in Ann Arbor are his players so this year we will see how good his system is working.


Last years recruits for Rodriguez had many good players come into the system. Tate Forcier no doubt the most helpful as he showed he can lead this team and with effort, could become the Michigan Savior we all want. Although he was very erratic he threw for over 2,000 yards with 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. With a 58% completion rate, maybe he will be able to get that TD-INT ratio a little bit better.

Denard Robinson was another good recruit Rich brought into the system last year. He was not a very good QB. He had only 2 touchdowns with 4 interceptions but did not get anywhere near the playing time Forcier did. While Robinson may not be much of a starting QB, he definitely poses a threat whenever Michigan decides to run the Wildcat formation (even if it is only a couple plays all year long), Gardner has exceptional speed and is very agile.

Vincent Smith promises to be a good running back. He was second on the team with 5.8 yards per carry behind senior Carlos Brown with 5.9.

 This years recruits are not amazing (with the turndown of Demar Dorsey) but some are attracting a lot of hype, such as Devin Gardner. The ESPNU top 150 recruit and Under Armour All American is predicted 3rd string but many think if Tate and Robinson falter, he could be moved up in the depth chart.


Rich Rodriguez will need to improve Michigan's defense if he wants to have a better year than last years 5-7 season. Michigan ranked 91st in rushing defense last year, 67th in passing defense, 77th in scoring defense and 82nd overall. This will have to be improved if Rich wants to get to a bowl game this year.

Although we lost Brandon Graham, who had more sacks than the rest of the line last year, this year our D-line is looking to be a strong one (although not as strong as last years) with the rest of the D-line returning.

 With Donovan Warren and Boubacar Cissoko gone, J.T. Floyd and Troy Woolfolk will need to step it up this year to make our secondary not as horrendous as last years.


Rich Rodriguez will need to win at least 7 games this year if not more if he wants to coach the Wolverines much longer. While i doubt Michigan will fire him if he goes 5-7 again it will definitely be discussed at the end of the season if Rodriguez cannot turn things around in Ann Arbor. Michigan has a very easy non-conference schedule with the exception of Notre Dame this year. Starting the season off with Connecticut, Notre Dame, Massachusetts, and Bowling Green respectively. The Maize and Blue faithful will be expecting 3-1 at the VERY, and i stress very, least. After that we begin the always tough conference schedule with Indiana, although not strong they did compete with us last year. Then we have Michigan State at home, Iowa, and  Penn State in Happy Valley. We than have easier games, although not definite wins with Illinois and Purdue. We then finish off the season with Wisconsin and a trip to the Horseshoe to battle Ohio State. Rodriguez will need to beat Ohio State if he wants total job security at the end of the year.

This is going to be a crucial year for Rodriguez. He will need to impress the fans more this year than ever. He will have very little excuses this year unless we have injury trouble.

My Prediction

This is looking to be an exciting year for the Wolverines. We have many good prospects coming in to go along with old ones still trying to prove they have what it takes. I personally think the Wolverines will go 8-4 this year, challenging Ohio State to the last minute, earning a bid to the Alamo Bowl or the Champs Sports Bowl and winning it. Anything less and i will be very shocked. I think Tate will develop into a better than average QB this year with very few erratic moments. I also think our secondary along with our D-line will step up to make our defense in the top 50. This will be a very important year for Rich Rodriguez and Michigan Football.


Double Nickel BG

June 19th, 2010 at 5:54 AM ^

you won't see the Wildcat from Michigan. Just because the QB is running the ball doesn't mean its the Wildcat. The old Single Wing offense is the wildcat. We run the zone read.


June 19th, 2010 at 6:59 AM ^

We aren't going to use it, spread-option is much like the wildcat but doesn't line up 3 RBs. Plus DRob will be torching the defenses with his arm and especially his legs =P.

Double Nickel BG

June 19th, 2010 at 2:49 PM ^

The wildcat formation (or wildcat offense), a variation on the single-wing formation, is an offensive Americanand Canadian football scheme that has been used at every level of the game including the CFLNFLNCAA,NAIA, and many high schools across America. The general scheme can be instituted in many different offensive systems, but the distinguishing factor is a direct snap to the running back and an unbalanced offensive line.

Maize and Blue…

June 19th, 2010 at 7:32 AM ^

Are you talking about our WRs?  Not that the potential isn't there, but they haven't even proven themselves to be a good group yet.

As for the wildcat, we never ran it last year so what makes you think they will run it this year?  I know this is going to come off sounding rude, but this may be the worst diary I have ever read on this board.


June 19th, 2010 at 8:13 AM ^

is this the worst blog ever? Because i think our recieving corp is amazing? and you dont. Im expressing MY oppinion on something I wrote, and its the worst blog ever because we have different oppinions on the receivers? No. This is a VERY decent blog about the season we are about to have, i got a couple things a little off but because i didnt research as much as i should have, but this is not a horrendous blog by any means. In my oppinion of course.


June 19th, 2010 at 10:47 AM ^

this may be the worst diary I have ever read on this board

kb9704 would beg to differ with his classic "Finally Got It Right?" diary from a couple of days ago.

OP, a summary of the depth chart, a few of the most basic stats, and your guess as to schedule does not a good diary make. Also, this is flat out wrong:

Michigan has a very easy non-conference schedule with the exception of Notre Dame this year.

UConn will be tough. they are coming off an 8 win season and are bringing something like 16 starters back. If we weren't Michigan, they would likely be heavily favoured in the opener.


June 19th, 2010 at 7:41 AM ^


Did you watch the spring game?  Your assessment of Denard looks quite valid from a last year POV; he looked like an athlete trying to play QB.  In the spring game, though, he looked like a QB who happens to be a great athlete.  Denard is fast, but that doesn't mean that a play is the "wildcat" just because he happens to be taking the snap.

As for the commenter who mentioned MSU:  I'm not so sure they are even going to a bowl.   And I wouldn't slot them ahead of Michigan in the BT bowl hierarchy just yet.  And, for purely selfish reasons, I hope they make the Outback Bowl.


June 19th, 2010 at 7:49 AM ^

My last sentence was ambiguous at best; Michigan is the team I hope makes the Outback bowl. It would be nice to take a sixteen mile "trip" to watch them play a bowl game.  Besides, I am hoping that after this season the Outback Bowl would be considered a disappointment.  This season, though, it would be considered a job well done and an indication that Michigan is "back."


June 19th, 2010 at 9:16 AM ^

This is the second time in the last two days someone new gets on to write a very poorly thought out "blog" with very poor understanding of what's going on, says a few things that are terribly obvious for their erroneous nature and gets neg-banged into oblivion.

Fortunately this was NOT another "Screw the arrogant U, we should have taken Demar" post. 


June 19th, 2010 at 9:36 AM ^

Why didn't you post this under the name "YoungWolverineFan" or "kb9704"?

I think people would be a little nicer if you stopped creating a new name every day, and upvoting enough of your own posts to write a diary.


June 19th, 2010 at 9:52 AM ^

the criticism. I'm reading this after the revisions so perhaps the acerbity of the initial commentators is no longer viable. I agree with the general flavor of what you write, and I also feel 8-4 is doable, but I too have some disagreements on what you posted. I don't feel the OOC schedule should be categorized as 'very easy'; while Umass might fall under that descriptor, I'm not too quick to place BGSU in that category. They did graduate 16 starters, but we've seen what they can do before. UCONN appears to be up and coming, upper tier MAC quality at the very least, and that is not meant to be a snub. Also, any trip to South Bend is fraught with challenges; it is rare to escape there with an 'easy' win, let alone 'very easy'. Still, I like how we stack up against our OOC foes.

I definitely would take a gander at the spring game video, as it highlights several players not in the mix last year who may be up for a big year in 2010: Cam Gordon, Greg Banks, Taylor Lewan, to name some, and of course the biggest highlight of the reel, Denard. If you are going to write a diary here, you need to do good analysis, not just shoot well from the hip.


June 19th, 2010 at 1:10 PM ^

Do you honestly think that you are the most qualified person to judge the merits of a post you wrote for public consumption?

What you wrote was received unfavorably by a significant majority of readers here. It happens to everyone. Instead of defending it, you should just learn what you can from the reaction here and move on.

EDIT: Also, for future reference, it doesn't affect your point total when you +1 your own posts.

Space Coyote

June 19th, 2010 at 10:30 AM ^

With some of these board posts recently is that they don't play out to the quality people around here are used to.  I'm not saying that's 100% the OPs fact, but I no personally, and for many other people, before I even got a user name I looked around the site and gained a basic understanding of how things around here typically worked and what people expected.


From there I think most people only slowly work their way into posting more frequently.  The thing that is so odd recently is that there have been diaries created and some odd posts, all from people that have created an account within the last couple days.


To the OP, I suggest following the path I just described.  Stick around, read what people are saying and what people expect from different areas of the site.  For example, typically the diaries are left for new ideas, putting old ideas in a new light through statistics, recruiting, and so on.  The board is more often used for something like you just posted.  Anyway, that's my suggestion, I probably would stay away from posting on this diary as it will only get worse for you because of the hole you already dug.  Just stick around and watch what other people are doing.  It's a good site and people will respect you more when you understand the underlying politics and rules of the site.


June 19th, 2010 at 10:47 AM ^

So 8-5 would be a shock to you? We play OSU, PSU, Iowa, Wisconsin, MSU, ND, UConn, and another team in our bowl game. I think 9-4, which is what you're saying, is our ceiling.

steve sharik

June 19th, 2010 at 11:23 AM ^

I think only O-state and maybe Wisconsin are the teams we don't have a realistic shot at beating.  Adam Rittenberg called our best-case scenario 10-2 (with a win over Wisconsin included), so our ceiling could even be 12-1.  I personally don't think that will happen b/c the QBs are still young and the defense is as green as the new bananas they trot out at the supermarket.  This will cause us to underachieve some games and overachieve in others.  I don't think 9-4 is our ceiling, but rather our expectation.


June 19th, 2010 at 11:55 AM ^

HartFan, I'm gonna give you some advice.  Advice that I have personally, along with many other bloggers here, have experienced.  With a "bad" post comes negs.  With another post asking why you were negged comes more negs.  From there on out every post you make on that thread shall be negged because it probably has something to do with asking why your blog was "bad" or still trying to understand why your getting negged.

My advice is to just let it go and try again next time. 


June 19th, 2010 at 12:23 PM ^

...system is going to be interesting to watch this year. It seems to me that the offense clicks best when the weather's good and routes are run cleanly and precisely. I'm still not completely sold on the philosophical concept of somewhat smaller, quicker players in the B10, but I'd love to be wrong. 

In my book, RR needs to deliver 8 wins this Fall. Michigan teams with less than 8 win seasons just aren't right and can never be acceptable. Success and Michigan football go together like beer and pretzels after all. 

Just making it to a bowl isn't good enough because damn near everyone hovering just above .500 gets to some sort of bowl these days. I can't imagine anyone feeling good about getting 6 wins and playing against someone like FL Int'l. in some no-name bowl. It would be an embarrassment. 

Although Brandon seems solidly behind RR regardless of this year's outcome, I'd start visiting the coach store if we get less than 8 wins. I guess patience isn't one of my virtues, but this is Michigan football we're talking about here -- a program with a standard of excellence that should be unparalleled. 


shoes untied

June 19th, 2010 at 3:20 PM ^

thing that bothers me the most is that if your recruiting section and your entire post you never reference Craig Roh, who is probably one of our best defensive players and he is going to be a sophomore. Kind of shocking to not even bring him up. Great athlete and amazing player. so reason he should not be included in this. 

The other thing bothering me is when you talk about the OOC schedule. Saying it is all easy teams besides ND. sorry sir but UConn is good. Preseason they are on the fringe of top 25 polls. so good try. A for effort. F for product.

Doug Sir Swish Remer

June 19th, 2010 at 4:06 PM ^

I agree he is a good player and has the potential to be a great player. But what has he done to justify greatness? I think everyone is drinking the "death roh" kool-aid a little too much. Did he play well as a freshmen? Absolutely. Is he an "amazing" player? Not yet.


June 20th, 2010 at 11:44 AM ^

Plus, as what was said below... this is THE premier college football blog, with guys like Mathlete who provide ridiculously amazing posts and make the rest of us feel horribly inferior. Or TomVH who gives deep insight into recruiting that the rest of us do not have the time, energy or access to get ourselves.

This is not the place for the average fan to have their voice expressed based off of their gut feeling, backed by a few glances at recruiting posts each week. There are places for that, like Rivals. I view myself as a diehard fan who is fairly knowledgeable on the team... and could even compose a convincing argument to support my treatise on how the team will do this year. However, I would never dream of posting it here, especially as a diary. it does not belong as a diary as it does not benefit anyone else other then my own ego, as it is not worth the pixels it is written with.

Just a thought from one passionate fan to another.


June 19th, 2010 at 10:28 PM ^

Michigan should start at least 5-1 maybe 6-0. with iowa at home, who is penn state qb. wisconsin is a revenge game, and we will beat OHIO STATE.