Michigan Favored by 3 over Maryland after Opening as 4.5 Favorites

Submitted by alum96 on November 17th, 2014 at 6:34 AM

As mentioned last week advanced stats would suggest these are 2 pretty evenly matched teams. ("Maryland is basically Rutgers")  Who are also evenly matched with PSU and Rutgers and Northwestern - all of which when playing each other make for some awful football to watch.  But quite evenly awful football.  Of course they all differ in strengths and weaknesses.  

Vegas opened the line at 4.5 for Michigan and it is now bet down to 3 - in normal years dumb money goes for the brand of teams like Michigan but even dumb money can only lose so many times before wisening up.  Basically you give the home team 3 in an evenly matched game and here we are.


Some thoughts watching parts of MSU-Maryland last weekend

  • The team I thought most similar when watching Maryland's offense was Michigan.  Realizing Maryland has exploded for more points at times this year (38 v Iowa, 37 v West VA) than UM but it looked very similar.   Without Diggs and his 700 yards receiving they don't have any real weapons; Deon Long their other good WR was erased by Trae Waynes.
  • The QB for Maryland CJ Brown is extremely mediocre and reminded me of one Devin Gardner.  (CJ Brown is no Gary Nova)  His passes are not thrown with much velocity, he has a high arc to the ball and is quite inaccurate.  He also likes to pass to the opponent a lot - he tried to throw an interception directly to Kurtis Drummond on the first pass of the game, which Drummond promptly dropped.  But Brown is relentless and on his second pass he threw the ball directly to Drummond again and tis time it was intercepted.  Kudos for not giving up kid!  Later he was happy to throw a pick 6.   And then another INT just for kicks. 
  • He did throw one nice bomb which looked a lot like a typical Devin to Devin throw it up and pray the WR goes get it.  Of course we have to adjust for "throw god" status - so expect 250+ yards this Saturday.
  • He tries to run a bit in a Steven Threet type of way.  Somehow he is their leading rusher.... with just under 400 yards.  Aka 1 day of work for Melvin Gordon.
  • Rushing game?  17 carries for 6 yards.  And they fumbled once.  Sounds familiar.
  • The DL seems to be the best unit of Maryland which was relatively succesful at getting some pressure on Cook and stuffing the run early until it petered out by the 3rd quarter. 
  • When Maryland's offense was busy turning the ball over the D held MSU to FGs rather than TDs.   Again in the first half - second half they wore down as MSU had 37+ minutes of possesion to Maryland's 22.

Common opponents

  • Indiana - we won 34-10; they won 37-15
  • PSU - we won 18-13; they won 20-19
  • MSU - we lost 35-11; they lost 37-15

Notice a pattern?  We're looking in the mirror.  So foreshadowing.... with their best player (Diggs) who is out for the year.

  • OSU - they lost 52-24.



November 17th, 2014 at 8:14 AM ^

IMO the biggest enemy to the streak will be the weatherman.  As of today the long range forecast has it cold but probably dry next Saturday.  But Sunday calls for a cold, late November rain and if THAT front moves in a day sooner I think you'll see a lot of empty seats watching Michigan try and become bowl eligible.


November 17th, 2014 at 10:03 AM ^

Now that Brandon is gone, if the attendance streak is broken, will they be honest about it?

When Brandon was here, I don't think we would ever know.  They would fudge ticket sales to make it look like 100,000 no matter what.

Since the "attendance" figures are based on ticket sales, it may not matter because they may have already sold 100,000.  But given the turmoil of this year, I'm not sure they actually sold 100,000 to this game yet.


November 17th, 2014 at 7:12 AM ^

Here's hoping that Michigan puts it all together on Senior Day and pulls this off. And I hope the fans show up in droves to see it; the players deserve that much.


November 17th, 2014 at 7:14 AM ^

I would take 24 vs. OSU. I think our defense may be able to keep OSU to around 24. Our offense will not score more than 24, that is for sure


November 17th, 2014 at 11:13 AM ^

You're right about 2008 and 2009—the halftime score was 14-7 and 14-3 in those games—but in 2010 it was 24-7 at the half.

I think you're correct about this year—our D is good enough to keep things in reach in the first quarter or so, but I bet OSU will be up by at least two touchdowns at the half largely because our offense is horrible and will keep turning the ball back over to the OSU offense.

The BIG conference championship game will be interesting, assuming it's OSU vs Wisconsin. The Badgers will try to run the ball down OSU's throat, which is what some have suggested MSU didn't do enough in their game against OSU.


November 17th, 2014 at 7:15 AM ^

I'll be home watching or listening to the game.  After 40 years of following Michigan football it's a little hard to change.

This weekend is the "Tour de Tucson" -- a bicycle event where 9,000+ cyclists converge on Tucson and ride a 100 mile + course around the city.  The roads are tied up every year for this event, and the best thing to do for a non-cyclist is to stay home and watch football.

Which is precisely what I am going to do.


November 17th, 2014 at 8:32 AM ^

Well, the good news - if you think this qualifies - is that the Massey prediction for this game flipped to being ever so slightly in our favor at 52%, so effectively a tossup but at least we're not the underdog as we were a couple weeks ago. 

It sets up a scenario for the remaining games, based on Massey's numbers right now, where we are most likely 1-1 in the last two:

2 wins - 4.16%

1 win - 51.68%

0 wins - 44.16%

The most likely 1-win scenario obviously is that we beat Maryland - that specific one has an estimated 47.84% probability as it also factors in a loss to Ohio State (0.52 x 0.92). 


November 17th, 2014 at 8:47 AM ^

I have seen MD play twice in peerson this year (Iowa & MSU). CJ Brown (QB) is the only real threat right now. Shut him down and we win. That is if Devin doesn't turn it over 3 times. The MD defense isn't too shabby. They will come after Devin all day with pressure.


Mich 24 MD 21


November 17th, 2014 at 8:54 AM ^

It appears our OL has jelled. This was predicted:  they are young and were not used to playing together. Regardless, assuming our OL play is solid, and we have three RB available (Green back, along with Smith and Drake,) that opens a lot up.

Conversely, we will be hurt by the loss of Clark, but that is more than compensated for by their loss of Diggs.


November 17th, 2014 at 9:56 AM ^

10-9 against NU.  both offenses look inept.  then NU beats ND 43-40.  and ND shreads us and shuts us out.  and NU beat wisky.

very weird schizo year for many teams around the country.

check out iowa's last 3 games: 48-7 win against NU; 51-14 loss against minny; 30-14 win against ILL.

even the SEC has a lot of head scratcher games.


November 17th, 2014 at 9:13 AM ^

I don't think 17 carries for 6 yards sounds familiar this year at all. We are not great at running the ball, but we average more than a yard more per carry than Maryland. That is not an insignificant difference.

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November 17th, 2014 at 10:00 AM ^

I'm thinking we'll have a running game and that should keep us out of the high-pressure 3rd downs and diastrous interceptions.  Losing Diggs is really big for them.

I'm driving from Connecticut for this so really need a win.