Commit says OSu is living in fantasy land....and Herbsteit cont. his clueless rants

Submitted by Ohioblueblood on October 7th, 2011 at 10:58 AM

"They're living in a dream world."

The former Buckeye and current ESPN analyst said Michigan's defense "is still kind of doing it with smoke and mirrors" after a three-game stretch in which it allowed only 10 points.


I love the video in the middle of the article.....





October 7th, 2011 at 12:04 PM ^

I'm not sure how much credit to give our D for making ND turn the ball over (seemingly everyone can do that), make Minny's starting QB go down before kickoff, or have SDSU choke in an emotional game against their former coach.

I give Mattison and the defense credit, but I want to see a good performance against a good team (and when do we play a remotely good team before Nebraska?) before we bust out the bubbly. That being said, if we shutout MSU I'll retract all of the above.


October 7th, 2011 at 4:11 PM ^

I agree with your first two points - Rees was repeating FLOYDFLOYDFLOYD in his head so quickly that he threw 2 terrible picks and forgot to hold the ball once, and those had little to do with the defense.  Also, Gray might have been enough to get Minnesota a few points.  But SDSU choked?  Notre Dame choked.  SDSU simply got dominated


October 7th, 2011 at 1:02 PM ^

What I do is look at the "Brady Quinn for Heisman" game and compare it to this year's ND game.  In the Quinn game those turnovers happened because Woodley was screaming into the backfield untouched and engaging what many civilized nations consider attempted homocide.  Quinn (and in later years Clausen) were under attack by Woodley, Branch, Graham, etc.  Fumbles and INTs happened because of pressure.

In Under the Lights, some of our tunrovers came from Rees staring down Floyd or simply dropping the ball without any kind of contact.  

To me in Under the Lights many of ND's mistakes felt unforced.  During the Carr era the turnovers were forced because of our defense attacking.  So I see no issue saying the defense is not "great" yet.  At least at the level I used to consider great.  That being said our defense is really good.  Insane improvement from last year and it gets year every game.  I love the players, staff, and the direction the program is going.  However we're not rebuilt yet and a lot of teams out there (Wisconsin for example) could likely demolish our defense.  


October 7th, 2011 at 1:05 PM ^

Our D is obviously improved and likely has more improvement coming, so there is much to be happy about. But in none of the games have we been dominant, and in none have we faced a real good offense. It's not "clueless" at all for Herbie to think that. And I'll always have respect for the guy for being semi-objective during Tressel-gate.

Yost Ghost

October 7th, 2011 at 1:05 PM ^

with the sentiment and hope that the next two weeks really show the UM defensive mettle. The D looks good but it's way too early to say it's great. You may be right that most of the turnovers were unforced in the ND game but UM coughed the ball up too so it's not like UM had a +5 in turnover margin. My only question is what does civilizated and homocide mean? That cracked me up when I read that. I don't think rainbow coalition is going to appreciate your post.


October 7th, 2011 at 11:51 AM ^

There's a difference, of course, between the defense doing something positive and the offense just failing...EMU has no passing game.  Lindley looked really out of synch with his receivers.  Minnesota had to start a true freshman who has no mobility and who looked like a deer in headlights all game long...Don't get me wrong - Michigan did a lot of nice things, but these were three not-ready-for-primetime teams. 


October 7th, 2011 at 12:20 PM ^

Ok, then let's not give Wisconsin any credit for beating the huskers because Nebraska played a bad game.  In addition, Florida sucked against Alabama so the Tide doesn't deserve any credit.  The same goes for MSU's defense against OSU since the buckeye offense is horrible.  Makes sense to me.


October 7th, 2011 at 3:43 PM ^

SDSU seemed like a pretty legit performance. That's a solid team with a good offense. Yeah, Hoke and his staff had a scouting report advantage, but I'm sure Chuck Long and his staff prepared for that game with the awareness that Hoke knew all of their schemes from last year. 


October 7th, 2011 at 11:08 AM ^

While I agree to a certain extent, they did give up boatloads of points to Indiana and UMass.  The fact that they haven't done that yet is proof enough for me that there is improvement.


The next two weeks will go a long way to seeing what the D really is all about.


I'd be interested in what Captain Buckeye has to say about MSU's defense and they fact that they have played no good offense outside of ND.


October 7th, 2011 at 11:23 AM ^

At least we can smoke and mirrors to look good. Smoke and mirrors couldn't do anything for ohio's offense, it's just a flaming train wreck with 2 conductors. 


October 7th, 2011 at 11:30 AM ^

... Honestly, I find him to be one of the more objective level-headed guys out there.  When he predicted a terrible year in RR's first year, everybody attacked him for being an OSU fanboy, but the truth was he was right. 

I just don't like that everytime he says something negative about our team, people (some, mind you) attack him because he went to OSU.  It's an ad hominem that frankly Michigan fans should be above.


October 7th, 2011 at 11:58 AM ^

that with the exception of SDSU running game, none of the teams we've played are of a Big Ten caliber (insert Minny jokes here). Considering how many turnovers we've generated, I think it's hard to say definitively if this defense is good (clearly, it is an improvement on last year's Rush Three And Cover Nothing scheme-running D).

Herbstreit is generally pretty trustworthy in his analysis; I watched his analysis of the ND game later that night (having attended it in person) and was struck by how quickly he could understand and break down exactly what Michigan was doing. He had a lot of insight to offer that I didn't think of, and I was sitting in the 20th row watching the same game.

Don't forget his commentary on OSU after the scandal. As far as ESPN commentators go, he, Musburger and Desmond are the most level-headed.


October 7th, 2011 at 12:11 PM ^

Herbstreit's relatively fair for the most part and if you've ever listened to his comments about Michigan, you can sort of respect where he's coming from.

Having said that, this defense is MUCH better than last year.  I mean simply looking at allowed points will tell you that.  It's not as if the schedule was tougher last year through 5 games....Indiana....Bowling Green....UMass?

I still believe this defense hasn't been thoroughly tested for the most part yet, but the fact that they are improving each week should speak for itself.  I have a feeling after NW and MSU people are going to take the defense seriously.  It may not be perfect and has some major holes, but as long as the offense is doing alright, they don't really have to do a ton.

And Herbie, i think you should worry more about the smoke and mirrors in gene smith's office and compliance departmant than michigan's defense...


October 7th, 2011 at 12:45 PM ^

cuz players are following their assignments. Tackling is so much better and opponents WR's are not getting many yards after the catch. When UM defenders stay closer to the ball then the turnovers happen. Much better defense because players are being coached up. Run gaps are closing and QB's getting pressured.


October 7th, 2011 at 12:52 PM ^

and not so good at others.  Is this defense really one of the top-5 defenses in the country?  Most likely not.  Are they good enough to start the season 5-0 and potentially end up as one of the top defenses in the conference?  Certainly.

They are evolving as is the offense.  Remember, this is the first year in a COMPLETELY new system for both sides of the ball.  Based on that alone, I am thrilled with the level competency the defense and offense has shown.

The next two weeks will be a good measuring stick for progress.  By the end of the MSU game we should have a pretty good idea how good this defense is and if Michigan can truly compete for the conference championship.

Basically, Herbstreit is right more than he's wrong and he's fairly level-headed about Michigan in most respects.  I think he gets a bad rep because of the Les Miles thing four years ago and because he's a Buckeye, but neither he nor Spielman look at everything thru scarlet and gray glasses.  For Buckeyes, they are both amazingly accurate.  I think those two are some of the best analysts ESPN has.


October 7th, 2011 at 1:35 PM ^

I would definitely say the D is much improved. Just because the teams we have played have not been BCS game contenders does not change the fact that the D has made plays. They have gotten off the field on 3rd downs more than they have in the last 3 years. They have shown more discipline despite running a new system and mixing in several very young players. They have been opportunistic with regard to turnovers. Are they perfect? No. But this D IS going in the right direction. Last year had we played this years Minn team, I say we still win but do it by giving up between 400-500 yards of offense to a Freshman QB nobody knows turning him into a star. Maybe thats a little bit of an exaggeration but then again we are talking the difference between last years D and this year. 

Indiana Blue

October 7th, 2011 at 1:44 PM ^

did a breakdown on Michigan's improved defense this year on BTN.  Not that I think that Jerry is very good at this kind of analysis, but he showed on video how U of M has deveolped an understanding of basic defensive concepts, including taking the correct pursuit angles to stop big plays.  (I am quite certain that if GERG was watching this analysis he would have said "WTF does that mean?".

Go Blue!