How do we win Sat.?

Submitted by mbee1 on November 17th, 2009 at 1:06 PM

Just read Michelin's post, and other optismists, that we can win Saturday. Well, of course, that's why they play the game. But how do we win? People point out the Purdue game and say we have a chance. A couple things. Purdue forced multiple turnovers. Can our defense do that? Purdue controlled the ball with a short passing game. Can our offense do that?
I think the only chance U of M has is to score a TD on either defense or special teams. Our offense needs to have sustained drives to keep the defense off the field. Tressel settles for a field goal or two that their back-up kicker misses. The biggest key for us to avoid mistakes. Penalties on offense that are drive killers. No turn-overs. And maybe Brian should add stop roughing the damn punter to catch the damn ball for special teams keys.



November 17th, 2009 at 1:17 PM ^

...I have to imagine the best chance we have is to stop the run and make Pryor beat us with his arm. I think we'll find ways to score enough points IF we take care of the football.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:17 PM ^

the kicker and mistakes such as those. Michigan cannot give Ohio State any points with foolish mistakes. If Michigan turns the ball over or the victim of poor luck (Blocked field goal-Wisconsin) or something else that changes momentum (onside kick - Purdue) it is crucial that such a moment not result in a catastrophic failure. That's this teams MO, the bad becomes worse. Quick turnover leads to a one play strike-touchdown, and it looks to be completely deflating.

As to X's and O's, believe it or not, if we see Pryor running the ball frequently, I think that is a good thing, because at least theoretically Michigan can then at least keep him in front and prevent any long scores. The D cannot give up anything deep. And that is the thing about Tressel, he will take the field goals, he will nickel and dime you, but I think that is fine for Michigan in this game. Nothing deep and nothing quick. Michigan's offense will score.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:19 PM ^

don't mean to sound down, but the only way we stand a chance is if pryor decides to turn the ball over multiple times and it would also help if tressel coaches extremely conservative, so all in all our chances of winning depend more on what OSU does and not what we do


November 17th, 2009 at 1:23 PM ^

We will be in the game from the beginning. If things start to look a little bad, we need to keep our composure and poise.

If that happens, we can win. If not,....


November 17th, 2009 at 1:38 PM ^

I don't think our "only" chance is on defense or special teams. Our offense can score. We just need to stop the run. Put 8 in the box and force Pryor to throw. I could be mistaken but I think they have the least amount of pass attempts in the Big 10. I know forcing anyone to throw on us usually spells doom but there is a reason Pryor has so few attempts.

If we can get off to a fast start and make OSU get away from Tressel-Ball we have a good chance at creating some turnovers and points off of them. As long as we keep the defense honest by using the passes in the flats to the rb like we did with Vincent Smith last weekend and keep Roundtree catching those quick slants it will keep the front 7 of OSU honest and give Tate some time to throw. I also think we have to pass early to set up the run and not the opposite this weekend.

I look for another nice run stopping day by Kovacs like against MSU. This game plays right into his strength of stopping the run and making quick tackles. I also think it will be a little easier on our secondary with Pryors' accuracy problems sometimes which might allow Gerg to dial up some of those nice blitzes we were seeing early in the year.

Call me crazy but I like our shot against OSU more than I did against Wisconsin. Now wether that translates into a win or just a closer game; only time will tell. But Wisconsin was better rounded team than OSU is on offense.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:59 PM ^

last year's team scored more points in the B10 thru 7 games than this year's team has? That's right. The most putrid, inept offense ever known to man, Michigan 2008, actually scored more points in the Big Ten than this year's team has.


November 17th, 2009 at 2:27 PM ^

You do realize that I said this team can score. Not this team can score more than last years or can put up 50 on OSU. I just stated that they can score. The op asked how we "thought" they could win this game and I stated my opinion. If we can force some turnovers and get OSU out of their gameplan then we could have a shot. But I guess since we are scoring less than last year then we don't have a chance. We should just hang it up. Sorry for even posting my thought.

I'm just tired of people taking every opportunity to bash this team. If you think we can't win and have an opinion, I'm fine with that. That is what this board is for. I have my doubts as well. But to just state that we score less than last years "most putrid, inept offense known to man" is shallow and probably the worst rebuttal on this thread.

If the op asked "why we will not score more than last year" then you would have been dead on so hey, you have that going for you.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:30 PM ^

There are many ways to win this week.

1.Switch uniforms.
2.Trick Ohio State to believe the game is at home. Then have Eastern play in OSU gear.
3.Rich Rod uses the power of the wizard hat to put Tressel into a spell causing him to call for Pryor to take a knee on every play.
4. The entire 1997 defensive team comes back and plays in place of our current roster.

Seriously, we need to work, and work like we haven't done since Notre Dame. The defense must play better, more focused and with an attitude that we can win. Anything less, then we get killed.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:34 PM ^

A lot of people with confidence in the offense. OSU's D will be the best Michigan's seen this year. Better than Penn St. The offense won't move the ball consistently. One of the keys is when in the red zone, score touchdowns, not field goals. We need to be more aggressive in the red zone with using the pass. It took Minor Rage 4 downs last year to score from the one. And the 4th down run was one of his best ever.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:37 PM ^

If both teams "play their game," Michigan should lose. OSU's average game this season was much better than almost any game Michigan played.

But for various reasons, football teams do not always play their game. OSU could come in over-confident, given that they've owned the rivalry lately, and given Michigan's record the last two years.

Also, the Buckeyes have relatively little to play for, other than pride. They have clinched the Rose Bowl, regardless of how Saturday's game turns out.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:37 PM ^

than it was against Penn State, however. Offense has not been the problem the last few weeks. I don't think the offense will move the ball consistently in terms of doing whatever they want, but I really do think that they will score some points.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:46 PM ^

I think we really step it up when our defense is in the red zone. Earlier in the year, it was decent, and we were able to force teams to FG attempts (some resulted in missed), thus providing a boost for the team. However, over the last 4 weeks, it seems like every time the other team drove down in to the red zone, we couldnt stop them and they'd score a touchdown. If we could hold teams to FGs instead of TDs, I think some of the past results and this sat could be very different.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:53 PM ^

Firstly, this is a known unknown. The premise compels us to acknowledge that there is a possibility, no matter how seemingly small, that Michigan can beat Ohio State on Saturday, but the issue is, how is it done (beyond scoring more points than OSU, which was already acknowledged.)

People point out the Purdue game and say we have a chance. A couple things. Purdue forced multiple turnovers. Can our defense do that? Purdue controlled the ball with a short passing game. Can our offense do that?

Our defense "can" do these things, the issue is the likelihood of said events. I think it can happen, it will need to revolve around getting consistent pressure from Graham and Van Bergen and making life difficult for those who would seek to throw in the middle of the field. (This season does not give one much hope on this count.)

Our deoffense "can" control the game with with short passes, but I find this unlikely. If Coach Rodriguez were inclined to play ball control (which, who knows, he might, just to go off script), I would think a mix of quick hits to Roundtree, coupled with a healthy combination of MinorBrownSmith would be the more likely way to do it.

All we have at the moment is hope. But it's better than nothing.


November 17th, 2009 at 1:56 PM ^

1. Commmit zero turnovers ( 0 fumbles or INTs). I know, but I really don't mean to be funny.

2. Eliminate penalties (I'm looking at you, OL. Holding is illegal last I checked).

3. Exploit the OSU linebacker overpursuit with TE dump passes. The OSU middle and edges are soft.

4. Exploit the DL overpursuit and lack of UM pass blocking with screens and QB draws.

5. Punt the shit out of that football.


1. Don't let anyone behind us. Ever.

2. Get to Pryor. He's got good skills, but he also happens to be a mental patient in the waiting room. He can be shaken.

3. Screens, Screens, and more Screens. They're coming. Be ready.

4. Stop the Brandon InSaineity. Start the Brandon Grahamityville Horror.

tn wolverine

November 17th, 2009 at 2:04 PM ^

We have to score every time we have the ball and stop them once or twice. I'm hoping for a shootout just like the Notre Dame game, with exactly the same result. I hope the ghost of Bo has some pull with the football gods, and that Minor has a Biakabutuka type day. I'll be watching, nail biting ,screaming, hiding my eyes, hoping, praying. What I really want to see is that big fat Justin Boren goes 0-4 in the series. GO BLUE, just win baby !!!!!!!!


November 17th, 2009 at 2:09 PM ^

Brandon Graham gets to Pryor early and often, forcing a turnover or two. Our offense is competent and able to take advantage. Stonum breaks a KO return for a TD. Michigan takes a lead into halftime.

Tressel then goes into a shell and starts running conservatively, afraid that his QB will Purdue the game away. The Michigan defense recaptures it's Michigan State composure and gets enough stops to eek out a win.

I see that as a best case-scenario. If Pryor has time to throw and/or Michigan has consistently bad field position, we're dead. We basically need OSU to panic.


November 17th, 2009 at 2:11 PM ^

We win by mistake free offense and blitz Pryor often, he
needs to be rattled, and do not have a letdown at halftime.
I don't know what has been going on with that lately.
We had success passing down field last week, continue
that. It's part of mistake free ball, but I'll reiterate,
Hold on to the damn ball!!


November 17th, 2009 at 2:12 PM ^


- We're +2 in turnover margin
- Our offense scores just about every time they touch the ball
- Our defense doesn't give up any real big plays

I mean, it could happen. It happened against ND earlier this year. To any M fan out there - when you were watching that game, you knew ND was better, we just played hard enough to win. We'll need to replicate that for this game. And that looks like we'll need a big special teams play as well.

Section 37

November 17th, 2009 at 2:20 PM ^

I think the D will be able to control their running game but more importantly the D-line needs to get penetration to flush Pryor to the outside towards BG or Roh and put pressure on him so that he can't throw the deep ball. His last 5 games a third of his completions were to the same receiver (Posey)and his completion percentage is under 50%. Keep Warren glued to Posey and make Pryor throw the underneath passes and that will give us a chance to be competitive.


November 17th, 2009 at 2:29 PM ^

No turnovers, penalties, blown coverages, dropped passes. In other words, we can't make any mistakes. The "no blown coverages" thing is probably asking more than this group of players can give at this point, sad to say.

Also, we hope the Purdue T. Pryor shows up.

So, no mistakes, and T Pryor has a bad day - we've got a good shot. If not, we're hosed.

Hey, if Stanford can beat USC, we can beat OSU, right?

Frank Drebin

November 17th, 2009 at 2:24 PM ^

Now would be a good time to use the "Our helmet gives us 14 points" theory. I think this should help our chances in winning after touching the banner and instantly being up 14-0.


November 17th, 2009 at 4:03 PM ^

by thinking for 60 minutes that we are going to win. If the team thinks that we might not win - even for one millisecond during the game - then we won't win. Because the minute that thought creeps in, they start doubting themselves, thinking too much, forcing plays, tightening up, holding back, not trusting their teammates, and making mistakes. And that's when RR starts yelling, which only creates more self-doubt, questioning, tightening, etc...

We will win.


November 17th, 2009 at 4:31 PM ^

Did you know that optimism in the brain is linked to the same circuits that enable motivation?

If the team has less optimism, they have less motivation.
If they think they're dead meat, they stop playing.

I basically agree with your assessment of what the team needs. Also, I see your reasons for pessimism. In fact,after each game, I am in a pretty foul mood, and people who are in a foul mood actually are the most accurate in making predictions. So, I actually agree with the pessimists more often than not. As a fan, it's good not to get your expectations too high.

At the same time, the team doesn't get a W by having the most accurate appraisal of their chances. So, I don't think it's entirely out of place to suggest reasons for hope, do you?

NOLA Wolverine

November 17th, 2009 at 5:09 PM ^

Play Graham on the weak side and let him blow up the Power player like USC did earlier in the year. He'll also be in position to pursue Pryor from the blind side when they reoll out to our strong side (Like every other team we played that has killed us), which is good because Pryor has zero pocket presence. Bring strong side pressure off the edge to stop those diabolical roll outs (Our defense is not designed very well on the strong edge, our edge player is in pass coverage, making it very hard to keep contain). Make SURE Warren is on Posey. Put Kovacs/Williams over top of Wolfork and hope the don’t run into each other. And if our linebackers could play downhill for a game, this would be a good time to do it. Stop the roll out, fill gaps fast, and take away the big play from Posey, and you've got a shot on defense.
Offense will be tricky because Ohio State could do a multitude of things. I assume they'll rush wide and make Forcier play in the pocket. They need to get Minor going (or in the game) and get the ball out of Tate's hand fast. They could scrape the 20's if they execute.
And then of course, what's always true in football, they need to smack them in the mouth Saturday, no more playing stationary.