The Baughz

October 15th, 2017 at 12:31 PM ^

He was not hurt on that play. Don't you know that if you have a big run you get benched immediately. On a serious note, I'm glad Higdon cracked the 20+ carries mark yesterday. He probably should have had 30-35 to be honest.


October 15th, 2017 at 1:37 PM ^

the website keeps eating my comments (so much so that it's usually ingrained to highlight and copy my text before i hit the "send" button", but alas i forgot this time)

the gist,

agree, but also worth considering that Higdon's mid-stride acceleration is wildley underrated and he has the ability to hit the homerun if he can get into the secondary. 

This is likely why Harbaugh has him out so much. He has a lot of things to work on as a primary back, but rolling the dice on him--in spite of all his flaws--hitting a homerun if he can find the secondary, statistically, just may be worth it.

I mean, he saved our ass on that busted 1st play of overtime. It wasn't a display of vision (which he will need to work on), but again his 4th and 5th steps are unbelievably fleet-footed.

Also, he's just plain started to run harder and seek more contact than ANY of our backs, outside of the miniscule snaps we've seen from Walker.




October 15th, 2017 at 2:25 PM ^

I disagree with the idea that Isaac has not picked up his physicality. Actually, even Evans is hitting holes hard--when the linen locks for him. Higdon should get 16-20 carriers if he can keep doing it, but Isaac has had one bad carry all season, the fumble. We need a serviceable pass threat, because 1-4 of the RBs can breakout any game. Evans needs to be given snaps on passing downs and misdirections. One knock from year to year has been the predictability of the playcall based on who is in backfield. That is the biggest crux of the rotation.

Wolverine Devotee

October 15th, 2017 at 12:34 PM ^

Instead of the idiotic bubble screens that never work, just replace those with Kareem Walker carries.

Every time he's run the ball, spring game or actual game, he's run incredibly mean. 

Run the ball instead of that slow developing horseshit that will get stuffed in the backfield or at best gain 3 yards. I'd rather gain 3 yards on the ground.

The Fan in Fargo

October 15th, 2017 at 1:44 PM ^

Those bubblescreens keep a defense honest and soften them up. I don't know if you've played defense against good athletes before but when those guys like DPJ are out there on the outside and they burn you for 20 or 30, you don't forget about that. Your focus widens on the field along with anxiety. This is advantage Michigan. Watch the Buckeyes offense. They stretch the field outside and over the top. Well, they used to go over the top a lot more and their offense was lights out. They are still good as we all know but after they plant all those seeds on the field, they rip you with their crafty running right smack in your face. If you don't respect those outside plays as a defense, you are dead in the water. I recommend always softening up the opposing defense EARLY.

Edit: What would make these bubblescreens more lethal though I've contemplated is getting some blockers from the offensive line out there quicker to make some running lanes if things fail early. ((Jeremy Gallon and Taylor Lewan huge play vs Buckeys in 2013 ring a bell??)). Could cut things back to the inside for a few more yards. I don't know. Maybe Wheatley and Poggi or something getting out there fast taking 45 degee angles to make some waves.


October 15th, 2017 at 12:31 PM ^

We won't play a RB unless he can pass protect.  You can see how big our coaches are on trust at each position.  I don't think it is a talent thing with Walker, but the staff wants you to do it all.  I hope we see more of the kid too.  He is explosive.


October 15th, 2017 at 12:44 PM ^

I've come to the conclusion that our coaches believe the first thing you have to do to win a game is not lose the game.  They like veteran guys and despite talent, they won't play you unless they trust you.  They don't wanted a busted blitz pickup causing a turnover that decides the game.   


October 15th, 2017 at 1:00 PM ^

Okay, this might be a crazy stupid hot take, and Lord knows I hate the coaching hot takes as much as anyone, but does it feel like Harbaugh's game planning has become a little... arrogant this year? They don't have to score 30 points to win a game, and yet it seems like he's coaching to try and score on every drive.


October 15th, 2017 at 2:00 PM ^

Airing it out and taking risks as though we have to put up 30 a game to win, and as a result we end up with games like the one against MSU, when all we had to do was be patient and not turn the ball over 5 freaking times.

As it turns out, there are teams that have found ways to win with a great defense and great special teams but an offense that plays it safe so it doesn't give points to the other team or gives itself more opportunities with field position.


October 15th, 2017 at 2:36 PM ^

You must be watching a different team, because we "air it out" twice a damn game at most. He just said in his pressed he didn't want to pass it even the 20 times they did against IU. He said that. That is not arrogance, but the opposite. He has no confidence in the pass game, due to dropped passes, inconsistent routes, and shit for QB play. He's only passing it to try and open up the run game, and that is sad. There is no aggression in our pass attack whatsoever. If there was, he'd run 4-wides and do crossing routes and slants and posts. Nope, we get 1995 bootleg crossing routes with TE target, with occasional fly routes. If we were aggressive then Harbaugh would have called DPJ's number 9 for a 9 route more than the one time he beat coverage on first drive of game.

It is as if we have the skills of Air Force or Navy out wide, the way we flarf through passing game.


October 15th, 2017 at 3:51 PM ^

You're right, against Indiana we did play more conservatively, and maybe that is their new approach. I hope it is, because that's not how we played against MSU, especially in the 2nd half. Maybe we are overreacting because the IU game was deceptively close given the inside kick and the ridiculous number of dubious penalties. I hope so.


October 15th, 2017 at 1:21 PM ^

I am beginning to believe Harbaugh and his staff are totally inflexible in player personnel. Do it our way regardless of results or its the highway. What should matter is results and not how you achieved the results. 

Penn State certainly hasn't out recruited us but last year after being buried by Michigan they changed the system to allow their players to play at what they are good at. The results are obvious. They are a freewheeling team who seem to enjoy the game. Michigan strikes me as being tight as a drum afraid to make a mistake. Against good teams, MIchigan performance is not good.

snarling wolverine

October 15th, 2017 at 1:34 PM ^

Against Florida, Evans got the most carries (22).

Against Cincinnati, Isaac had the most (20).

Against Air Force, it was Isaac again (16)

Against Purdue, it was Evans (14)

Against MSU, Higdon and Evans each had 12 carries.

Against Indiana, it was Higdon (25).

So in just six games, three different backs have each led the team in carries so far.  I'm not seeing the pattern of "inflexibility" that you apparently are.


October 15th, 2017 at 12:33 PM ^

Hmmm maybe I'm the outlier here but why is this a thing? He made one good run - a very good run - but the guy in front of him just went 25-for-200 and 3 TDs. We have way more evidence that Higdon kicks ass, I think we should just ride him and see where we get doing that. I don't remember seeing Walker much outside that one run and being super impressed, maybe I'm crazy.


October 15th, 2017 at 12:42 PM ^

You're not crazy and mostly right. The question is simply, how many times does Evans get the rock only to run into the back of one of his own OL and fall down for a loss? Or Isaac get slow down and anticipate a hit instead of running through contact? How many times do they get to do this? Meanwhile Kareem's one and only run is punishing for over 5 yards. Not saying he should get Higdon carries but maybe he should get more than one?


October 15th, 2017 at 12:46 PM ^

I agree re: Evans, that he has been very underwhelming this year, but I actually think Isaac brings good value to the table and should keep getting touches. People forget there were games earlier this season where Isaac was basically the only dude on offense doing anything at all for long stretches of the games. I'd be on board taking some carries from Evans and giving them to Walker (or giving them to Higdon / Isaac and going two-headed for awhile).


October 15th, 2017 at 1:08 PM ^

Agreed, people forget so soon that Isaac was the one in the first few games getting it done and, forgive the pun, carrying the team only to be taken out in the Florida and Air Force(?) games after 20-30yard bursts, so that Evans could lose 3 yards on a sweep and Speight could overthrow Crawford and Perry and we could settle for a field goal. I think Issac is very under appreciated and yes he fumbled in the State game, it pissed me off too, but he proved himself in the first few games, Higdon has proved himself the last few games, and even behind our porous OL. Again, the biggest weakness this team has is not playing to the strengths of its players, we will continue to struggle until we do.


October 15th, 2017 at 12:53 PM ^

The issue isn’t that Higdon is ahead of him. It’s that Evans is (and Isaac). They need to figure out other ways (Percy Harvin) to use Evans, but taking a handoff on obvious running downs is not that. Isaac does nice things, but he also blows blitz pickups and seems to not covet contact. Divide half of both of those two guys’ reps and give them to the dog that runs with cruelty. I think that’s what the OP was getting at.

Harbaugh's Lef…

October 15th, 2017 at 12:34 PM ^

I was excited when I saw him out there, satisfied with the run and disappointed he didn't get another chance. That said, hard to get him back on the field with the way Higdon ran yesterday but I'd like to see him more, in place of Evans possibly.

snarling wolverine

October 15th, 2017 at 12:35 PM ^

Karan Higdon rushes for 200 yards, 3 TDs, and pretty much pulls our ass out of the fire in OT by himself, and the MGoBoard responds by 1) whining that the Boston College RB isn't here and 2) suggesting that a guy who's rushed for 15 yards this season needs to be out there, based on an 8-yard run in which he did not need to gain anything after contact.




October 15th, 2017 at 6:08 PM ^

200 yrds = Meh lets bench the guy for this promising young guy

and don't forget that promising young guy probably hasn't mastered the whole playbook yet and may be iffy in in pass protection . . . 

Oh yeah and because last season's fan-fave Chris Evans & 5* Ty Isaac are such shitty runners themselves.  /s

Michigan has an embarrasment of riches at RB, and it's glorious.