The future looks bright. (Freshmen Play)

Submitted by umaz1 on October 29th, 2011 at 5:55 PM

We were hearing all week that more freshmen were going to play in this game. We will learn more about how they did when Brian does his UFR, but I was pleased with what I saw out of them.

Countess got the start for the first time.  We pretty much already knew what to expect with him after the last few games, but he certainly didn't dissapoint.  He just always seems to be in the right place.  Dare I say he is the best corner back out there for us right now?  Not sure if they are just going away from him, but teams seem to be picking on Floyd more.

Not sure how much of this is Purdue's Offensive Line, but Frank Clark looked like an absolute beast out there today.  He seemed to be in the back field on every play and he appeared to be taking great angles to not let the QB outside.

Desmond Morgan also impressed me.  He too seemed to keep contain better then previous players at his position and at least appeared to be more aggressive at attacking the ball.

I saw Brennen Beyer out there quite a bit, but I didn't "feel" him to quote a term from Hoke.  Cant say rather he did well or poorly.

These were all just observations I had with limited angles from the TV broadcast, I look forward to seeing Brian's UFR to see how well they all actually did.

What do you think? Did anyone see anything differently, or were there any players I missed?


Go Blue!!!





October 29th, 2011 at 6:16 PM ^

Hoke said he didn't have any concern about playing so many youngsters because of how they've practiced. Cornerback Blake Countess started, while linebackers Brennen Beyer and Frank Clark played more.

"I want to kill one of them," he quipped without going into detail. "Nah, that's not fair. Read it in the obituaries.


October 29th, 2011 at 6:07 PM ^

looks like he is a complete beast he has the body of a rush end already just by his measurables. And he was in the backfield quite a bit when the game was in hand and they just let it rip. But the future for Frank looks real good imo.


October 29th, 2011 at 6:08 PM ^

Frank Clark did not look like a freshman out there. That guy has a bright future. Countess, well we already seen him a lot and continues to be solid. Taylor did not see action and I think this was by far Morgans best consistent play throughout 4 qourters.

Blue boy johnson

October 29th, 2011 at 6:20 PM ^

Frank Clark is listed as 6'2'' 228 pounds. I think this is wrong, Frank looks much bigger than that to me. He must have had a growth spurt at some point recently. Rivals had him listed at 6'2'' 210 and Scout at 6'3'' 205 on their commitment lists for M's 2011 class


October 29th, 2011 at 6:20 PM ^

I agree, every freshman looked good, including jake ryan (can't forget that he's also a freshman). With that said, it was purdue, so I'm going to wait and see how clark, beyer, and morgan do against better competition. I already know Ryan and Countess will be studs.


October 29th, 2011 at 6:21 PM ^

It would be great if we could get another solid (healthy) corner across from Countess.  Floyd just doesn't cut it.  Teams are consistently picking on him now and I feel he is the only major liability still out there on our D.  He displayed some very poor play today and he made some crucial mistakes against MSU as well.  The kid is just slow to react.  A healthy Woolfolk and Countess would be ideal at DB.  Let's hope Kovacs isn't out too long.


October 29th, 2011 at 6:29 PM ^

Floyd and Avery have both played well, and have out played a senior who is banged up in Worfolk. I actually like his play today at safety though. And I think Avery has a bright future also he is only a sophmore if I recall right. Floyd is the only corner we have that can jump a route which isnt always a good thing but he wont just give up a 7 yard out every short route, he can jump it.

Incredible Hoke

October 29th, 2011 at 6:29 PM ^

Honestly, I think JT Floyd has exponentially improved over last year. He is aggressive and plays with passion. Now, besides Purdue's last TD, I thought JT had a pretty solid game. Don't get me wrong, he can certainly improve... But I really think he's a better option than Woolfolk at this point because of his paper mâché body. (No offense to Troy, I really like the kid but, he just has the worst luck.


October 29th, 2011 at 6:37 PM ^

I agree that he is improved but he still is far from a Big 10 caliber talent at DB.  There was a blatant hold as he was getting beat today as well.  He didn't look like he wanted to tackle anyone against MSU.  I'm satisfied with the overall improvement of the D but I'm just afraid this position is going to bite us again this year.   


October 29th, 2011 at 7:10 PM ^

I'm sure I don't know what I'm talking about, but Floyd does seem a little limited at corner.  He's played decent for much of the season, has improved a lot over last year, but he just isn't that fast.  Thus, he gets exposed at times.  Against Purdue, he had the angle on one play and he still let the guy go right by him.  The pass interference, the last TD play are other examples.  I like the kid and he really has maxed out most his natural ability, but against a fast WR I still cringe some.  


October 29th, 2011 at 7:51 PM ^

JT's only real problem I've consistently seen from him this year is he CONSTANTLY leaves his feet and puts his head down when trying to make a tackle.  He did this twice against State, and I believe both resulted in TDs.  I think he still has a little bit of the GERG/Gibby mentality left in him, but Mattison and co. will correct it.

Mr. Yost

October 29th, 2011 at 8:57 PM ^

JT Floyd is what he is...and that's NOT a bad thing.


But what you see is what you get. I've been saying this all season, and yes...he HAS improved.


But he has mediocre speed...less than average recovery speed. He can't tackle for SHIT, never has, never will. He'll get beat being overly aggressive. He struggles in man.


He has a short memory. He doesn't take shit from ANYONE. He has a swagger for the position. He competes every single down. He's VERY good in press coverage. He's VERY good in zone coverage.


You think, if he could tackle he'd make a good free safety...which is why they tried him out there last year. But #1 he can't tackle and #2 his aggressiveness is a weakness...too many big plays (ala Cam Gordon at Strong Safety).


He's the perfect boundary side CB in zone coverage. He's got the size and strength to press. He does a VERY good job of finding his zone and sitting down in it (see his INT vs. ND for details). In man, it's 50/50...I like Avery and Countess in man, and Floyd and Countess in zone...but you can't tip your hand like that. I'm VERY happy with his progress though, I didn't think he'd get a 5th year going into the of now, I'm sure of it (assuming he wants it).


November 30th, 2011 at 11:46 AM ^

...uh, not sure where you are going with this. I always get a bit confused when players are race-typed or the need to identify objective criterion by color. Even when it is a positive comment, I am not sure that tough and athletic don't apply equally to "people." I mean, Sam Sword was tough, but not God-gifted athletic. Drew Henson was athletic. Woodson was both.

swan flu

October 29th, 2011 at 7:16 PM ^

Blake Countess has the natural ability you need to be a top level cornerback. The dude has the potential to be Leon Hall-esque


Have we seen any freshmen on offense yet this year? I know Rawls got a few carries here and there, but aside from him I don't recall any freshmen getting any reps on offense.


October 29th, 2011 at 7:21 PM ^

Is not easy... JT has had a very solid year.  Remember 3 years ago when he was so bad, and everyone thought he was a step slow...well he has come a long way since then and has made some plays.  He made a nice play today breaking up that one pass in the red zone...and that hold late in the game, was not necessarily a bad play... if you get beat, gotta tie the guy up somehow....

Playing corner, he is up against the other teams best athletes every game...and has held his own pretty much..

Which makes Blake Countess even more inspiring...that kid is playing as well as a freshman corner has here, since the mid 90s and you know who Im talking about...

To echo the post above...Frank Clark looks pretty 6-5 270 huge with HUGE long arms...he has a basketball players build... and he looked athletic as hell out there...

These guys, Ryan and the others....+ #1 recruiting class coming in, defensively oriented... IMO we will be DOMINANT on defense within 2 seasons.