April 7th, 2011 at 9:29 PM ^

-Said Denard's not gonna just be a drop-back passer

-Impressed with the amount of teaching that is going on both sides

-Running backs are starting to emerge

-Mentions some players on defense are further down on the learning curve (mentions MRob and JB Fitz)

-Thin in depth in the LB and DL positions, as well as QB

-If the D can be mediocre, and the offense stays dynamic, could be a tough team

-Too much pride on the sidelines to get blown out in any game

-Set the floor at about 7-8 wins, and said the ceiling is unsure, depending on how the players pick up the schemes and fundamentals and if they stay healthy


April 7th, 2011 at 9:35 PM ^

Set the floor at about 7-8 wins, and said the ceiling is unsure, depending on how the players pick up the schemes and fundamentals and if they stay healthy. I think we should win at least 9 games. We half to beat msu and ohio and norte shame! If we can beat those 3 teams we should be able to win 9 games.GO BLUE!!!


April 7th, 2011 at 9:41 PM ^

He said that he expects the team to win somewhere in the 8-9 game range.  Just not sure how far above that they can go because of how thin and how much youth we have.


April 7th, 2011 at 11:44 PM ^

You move down a learning curve as you improve.  Going up would represent negative learning.  Saying someone is further down the learning curve means they're further along relative to someone higher up.  Further down "on" the learning curve would mean the same.

Here's a good article: http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/61762/The_Learning_Curve

But people often use this phrase incorrectly, as perhaps Balas did.  I probably could have saved some time and just listened myself.  gd laziness


April 8th, 2011 at 12:56 AM ^

Actually I would take that as a compliment.  As you learn you progress "down" the learning curve.

Having said that, and listened to the replay of the discussion, the phrase was used incorrectly and he meant it as a negative criticism of the two players.

Hoken's Heroes

April 7th, 2011 at 9:42 PM ^

If the offense can hit on a few more cylinders other than the DROB one cylinder it did last season and the D can firm up a bit, Balas is right in his assertion that U of M will be a difficult team to beat. The biggest thing is the D, though. It has to find a pulse.


April 7th, 2011 at 11:27 PM ^

I think our Defense will improve from 'among the nation's worst' to 'bad' next year. If I remember correctly, a touchdown less per game would put us in the middle of the pack in the B10, around 26-27 points a game. That's still not good, but should give us a better chance against the better teams in the conference.

I think 8-4 or 9-3 is a good bet. Anything more than that and Hoke gets an award (in my book) for best transition ever. I know he's inherited a wealth of talent, but it's not that easy to create a seamless transition from one system to the next. 

I don't expect the offense to have nearly the same level of production as last year, but a win in my book would be a reduction in turnovers


April 7th, 2011 at 11:20 PM ^

make a hole, which is exactly where "norte shame" and similar names and phrases lifted from EL need to go to die.


April 7th, 2011 at 11:37 PM ^

and never get off the boat.. Grrrrrrrrrrr

Oh, and Hunwick for president!

Hmmm, I didn't think I was that excited. Oh well, Muppets!


April 8th, 2011 at 1:17 AM ^

I think we should expect the offense not to be as explosive as last year because I am not expecting them to score points as quickly. I doubt this will be the grind it out offense of the old days and run on the first play of every single drive hoping the QB makes a play on 3rd down but I'm hoping for a happy medium of that mixed with last year.

Ironically part of the problem last year was how fast the offense would score meaning the defense would only have a few minutes of rest and be (maybe) coached up. I'm excited about seeing the defense. They had their moments of being fantastic against the run last year and I think a year's experience for the young secondary will help them tremendously.

There's no way we're beating both Nebraska and Ohio State in a row though.