Denard Robinson rated #3 Big Ten Player, per Rittenberg

Submitted by justingoblue on March 17th, 2011 at 7:55 PM

I can't believe this hasn't been posted, but I checked the board and this was posted after the latest UV, so as far as I can tell, MGoBlog has been MGoSlacking today (or MGoDrinking).

Anyways, Rittenberg rated Denard as player number three in his postseason player rankings, saying:


Robinson was the nation's best player through the first month of the season and helped a flawed Michigan team end its bowl drought. These rankings are largely about impact, and no Big Ten offensive player made a more pronounced individual impact than Robinson. Without him, the Wolverines would have stayed home for the holidays once again. He claimed Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year honors and won the Chicago Tribune's Silver Football Award, among other accolades. The sophomore complemented his superb rushing skills with significantly improved passing, particularly in wins against Connecticut and Indiana. His big-play skills led a record-setting Michigan offense that had to be at its best as the team struggled mightily on defense and special teams. 

Although Robinson got banged up at times and didn't dominate against the Big Ten's elite teams (why he isn't ranked higher), he maintained a major presence every time he took the field. He eclipsed 300 yards of offense in nine games and had 360 yards or more six times. Opposing defensive coaches had to shape their game plans around No. 16, who lacked a dynamic supporting cast and blossomed for the Wolverines in his second season.

Obviously I think he should have been number one, but whatever; I won't hate on Rittenberg because I usually think he does a good job. Link. It's the third story down.

Edit: Thought I would add for comparison: Persa at four, Tolzien at ten, Pryor at fourteen.



March 17th, 2011 at 8:16 PM ^

No player meant more to any team this season in the Big Ten than what Denard Robinson meant to Michigan. You want to talk about impact? The stats that Rittenberg threw down spoke for themselves. He's a 1st year starter and a 1st team All-American. I like Rittenberg's work a lot, but I think he whiffed big on this one. Maybe he forgot that he won the Silver Football?

And for the record, Mike Martin most likely won't make his list. Personally, I think he should have, as he was the anchor for that front 7 this year (front 6 with the 3-3-5, I suppose). Mike Martin could have gone pro, even with his draft stock slipping due to some injuries. Regardless, I think that's a bit of a snub for as effective as he was this year, despite the youth surrounding him everywhere else in the defense. However, definitely not as big as having an All-American, Big Ten POY not #1.

Eye of the Tiger

March 17th, 2011 at 8:51 PM ^

Robinson was the most important player to any single team, YES.  But he was also prone to game-destroying turnovers and drive-kills, a symptom of being young and inexperienced, and also from playing on a team without other strengths necessary to take the pressure off of him (rbs, defense, special teams).  So defensive stars like Kerrigan have a natural advantage when it comes to rankings like this, while playing on mediocre to bad teams.  

This year, I expect that to change, and for his game to be elevated by better decision-making.  No doubt in my mind he'll be the Big 10's #1 player this year, as well as a Heisman candidate.  

Monocle Smile

March 17th, 2011 at 8:58 PM ^


The Spartans have avoided legal issues since the Rather Hall situation

Yeah, the police never even gave Chris L. Rucker a funny look. And "situation?" When will it actually be called what it was?

On a more relevant note, it's good to see multiple Michigan players in the top 25 once again.


March 18th, 2011 at 1:13 AM ^

That's what I like to see - good, sound logic, founded in analysis, so those who might be upset by this post have some facts to work with to calm them down. None of those inflammatory, unilateral attempts at the football equivalent of papal infallibility.

Tell me, fella, how did you arrive at what is bound to be such an unpopular conclusion?