Grasping at Straws, 10-2 edition

Submitted by Rasmus on October 20th, 2010 at 6:16 PM

Okay, I'm going to voice what I know all of you are thinking deep down inside when you say 8-4:

Michigan has already lost all the games it will lose in 2010.

With a non-catastrophic mid-season injury status (knock on wood -- seriously, do it) and the bye week here after two weeks of harsh reality checks, this team is in a position to bounce back and go into the last two games of the regular season at 8-2. If the 2010 Wolverines do that, UW and OSU start to look different. I say this team will finish strong and end the regular season at 10-2.

Why?

  1. Not only is Demens better than Ezeh, but Ezeh will function well in the backup role.
  2. Demens gives Mouton reliable help in the middle, something he has lacked up to now. This will allow Jonas to play more within the defensive scheme, without feeling the need to try and do it all himself.
  3. Two solid quarterbacks are better than one. The bleeding from sophomore-mistake turnovers will not stop, but it will slow to a point where it will not kill us at the end of the season against UW and OSU.
  4. Special teams will improve dramatically once Rodriguez, who is now apparently involved in special teams as much as he is involved in the offense, puts his stamp on them. If this means Gibson spends more time working with the secondary (his actual area of experience) and less time working with special teams, that could have a good sort of domino effect.
  5. We will still have a bad secondary, but by the last two games, it will be a bad secondary with ten games of experience. That's better than nothing.
  6. Let's hope Rich figures out that Gibbons should be kicking off and Broekhuizen should be kicking field goals. There's a reason why NFL teams almost always employ two different kickers in these two very different roles.
  7. Finally, Hopkins is going to shatter the curse on Michigan running backs that's been in place ever since Hart lost two fumbles in his last game (twice as many as in his entire Michigan career before then). [Has there ever been more conclusive proof of the occurrence of a curse?] The glimpses I've seen of him remind me of what's been missing. I especially like the way he carries himself after a run -- he just gets up, looks around, and goes back to work. Once Hopkins breaks the curse, Toussaint emerges as a viable option and is no longer automatically injured the minute he is in for more than one play.

Comments

cargo

October 20th, 2010 at 6:20 PM ^

Honestly Gibbons kicked off at the beginning of the year and was only getting to about the 15 or so. Broekhuzen while he made mistakes against Iowa at least hits the endzone ocassionally.  Finally for fg i don't want either of them they kick the ball to low which is why they both have had one blocked

go16blue

October 20th, 2010 at 6:36 PM ^

Low kicks are a result of poor leg strength. The kickers kick it lower to make it go farther, but the resulting angle is easier to block (good kickers have the strength to kick it far and high). As far as that play goes, its on the OL. But for our other blocks (the one against MSU for example) it is just a matter of leg strength.

Papochronopolis

October 20th, 2010 at 6:28 PM ^

Woah buddy

let's not get ahead of ourselves here. I like your points and think this team gets better but we need to make it through the next 3 games before we start talking about the last two games.

Tater

October 20th, 2010 at 7:09 PM ^

Actually, "we" as fans can talk about Wiscy and OSU all we want and it won't have any effect on the field.  As long as the team doesn't get ahead of themselves, anything we say wont really hurt.  I think it is very safe to say that RR is very good at getting teams to focus on one game at a time.

Young Pretty a…

October 20th, 2010 at 6:30 PM ^

Rasmus,

I appreciate your thread, the Michigan fan base can learn quite a bit from you.  Blogs have been negative lately, but it's nice to see an upbeat thread.  Though it's highly unlikely that the team ends up 10-2, I love the attitude and enthusiasm. 

Here's to striving for 10-2

Go Blue!

jshclhn

October 20th, 2010 at 7:10 PM ^

The next three games have a high chance of win.  The last two - not as much.

To your points: 

a. Demens will be nice.  I hope against hope there are others on the depth chart hiding that should be on the field on defense, and that the coaching staff in the near future will have similar epiphanies to play them.

b. Special teams is not improving dramatically under RichRod, but I don't think we need them to.  Hagerup is fine now.  Our best hope for them this season is to get them a bit more consistent with the kickoffs, and avoid kicking field goals as much as possible. 

c. A bad secondary with ten games of experience is still going to make easy pickings for experienced offenses belonging to Top 25 teams.

d. I hope the running backs just get healthy.  Vincent Smith has not been consistent enough to draw the attention of the defense and take pressure off of Denard.  Shaw has been better to that end, and Hopkins and Touissant have shown promise at times.  There's a number of them to choose from - all I ask is that the starter pick up 3rd and 1.

snowcrash

October 20th, 2010 at 7:14 PM ^

But I still think Wisc and OSU beat us if they're on their game. Conversely, I think we'll beat Illinois and convincingly beat PSU and Purdue if we're on our game.

Blue_Sox

October 20th, 2010 at 7:27 PM ^

You might be better served poking your eyes out with those straws than deluding yourself into thinking we have a legitimate chance at running the table from here.

Rasmus

October 21st, 2010 at 9:18 AM ^

if I could get Brandstatter on the radio here in Connecticut, I'd listen as I watch -- as it is I tune out most of what the broadcasters say -- I'd just mute it, but I like to hear the crowd noises, etc.

My fantasy is that within a few years, technology will allow viewers to choose to listen to only the game/stadium-noise audio feeds, without play-by-play/commentary, so you could mute the talk during plays.

Mi Sooner

October 20th, 2010 at 9:14 PM ^

7-5 with a win over a school with the word state in it.  i thought that psu wuold volunteer for the honor.  in reality, going 2-1 in the next three games gets them there; anything more than that gets us to a 1 Jan bowl.

Mi Sooner

October 20th, 2010 at 9:14 PM ^

7-5 with a win over a school with the word state in it.  i thought that psu wuold volunteer for the honor.  in reality, going 2-1 in the next three games gets them there; anything more than that gets us to a 1 Jan bowl.

M_Born M_Believer

October 21st, 2010 at 2:49 AM ^

And I will stick by it because while I think the next 3 games are winnable, there are 3 road games left on the schedule and I just don't think this team is ready to become road warrior just yet.  There will be a bump or two along the way.  I believe that they will go 2-1 over the next 3 and then get their first "signature" win in 1 of the last 2.  That feel good will carry over to the Bowl game and they finish the season on a high note with a good bowl win.

9-4 with most of your starters coming back and another key recruit coming in (D. Hart), yeah that is something to be excited about.

I do like your optimism though...

BigCat14

October 21st, 2010 at 12:32 PM ^

why not run the table we can dream as fans!  the only thing that could crush the dream is the reality that happens on the field 'IF' they lose?  on the other hand the dream becomes reality if the points made by the OP outweigh, in 'REALITY' on the field, our next five oppenents positive points!  GO BLUE 10 and 2!

cjpops

October 21st, 2010 at 12:55 PM ^

1) Slow down.

2) Roll down the window.

3) Throw the crackpipe as far as you can.

Just kidding, man.  Love the optimism - enjoy the last 5 games! :-)