OT: Clemson vs. OSU

Submitted by Catchafire on April 30th, 2017 at 8:14 AM
Woke up earlier and was happy to remember the 31-0 beating osu suffered at the hands of Clemson and I started to wonder why exactly did such a talent rich team lead by an offensive guru fail to score a point in a game. It was also spurred by the excellent Inverted Veer Analysis article on the front page.

It seems as though good teams finally figured osu out. In reality, osu won against Michigan due to poor officiating and key mistakes by our team. We had that game. They went up against Clemson​ and failed hard.

Was this due to a vastly superior defensive line, the offense just sucking, JT Barret being meh?

In the aftermath, osu decided to hire Kevin Wilson who I am sure will make osu deathly frightening. What does this mean for us and how do we defend against whatever they are hatching?



April 30th, 2017 at 8:27 AM ^

Osu was just not as good as their record. They had no business beating Michigan, could have easily lost to Wisconsin and msu, and struggled with northwestern and Indiana.

It's a damn shame we didn't take advantage when we so clearly had the better team, because that won't be true in 2017


April 30th, 2017 at 8:43 AM ^

They also seem to "luck out" with their hires.  Kevin Wilson just happens to be available right after a bad defeat; Urban just happens to be available after a mediocre season.

I'm hoping Greg Frey can provide some insight to Kevin Wilson and a part of Indiana's sucess was due to Frey.


April 30th, 2017 at 8:41 AM ^

Put Deshaun Watson on OSU and I think they would have scored some points. We put too much emphasis on scheme over players. Same smartest guy in the room ran one of the best RBs in the NFL like 11 times in a game vs msu a yr earlier ...


April 30th, 2017 at 8:40 AM ^

They lost because of the absence of Zeke Eliott, and the presence of JT Barrett.

They had a very containable running game, and Barrett could not make up for the overpursuit with downfield passing.

You keep going 3-and-out after 3-and-out against Clemson, they are going to score 31 points while you score 0.


Blue Balls Afire

April 30th, 2017 at 5:42 PM ^

As successful as OSU has been, I think they should have been better because of what you've just alluded to.  OSU seemingly has a coaching brain fart every so often.  The talent is there to win every game, but the difference in a lot of their losses is inexplicabgle coaching decisions.  Not adjusting to a bear front against Va Tech.  Not running gap against Sparty in the rain.  Not trying to run more against Clemson.  Some teams don't have the talent to win despite great coaching.  OSU's problems have been just the opposite.  Stupid coaching decisions.


April 30th, 2017 at 11:50 PM ^

I'll take JH anytime. Meyer has benefited from superior talent wherever he has been. A good coach-yes, but a great coach against equal talent, probably not. As above, just look at some of his recent losses. Most should have never happened. A win last year in a game we should have won would have started the talent redistribution and our return to dominance. I think Urbs will retire again if we pin a few defeats on him.


May 1st, 2017 at 1:35 AM ^

Man, c'mon. According to the NFL draft Michigan had more talent than anyone in 2016 and Harbaugh managed to lose to three different teams, including frickin' Iowa. You're not sure Meyer is a great coach against teams with equal talent? Dude, we're six months post-Michigan losing three times last year to teams with worse talent.

Here's Meyer's three most recent losses (they represent half of his losses at OSU in 5 years): to the 2016 national champions, to the 2016 Big Ten champions, to the 2015 Big Ten champions.

Here's Harbaugh's three most recent losses (notably, Harbaugh is going on year 3 with the same amount of losses at Michigan as Meyer has going on year 6 at OSU): to the tied for 4th place ACC team, to the 3rd place Big Ten team and to the tied for 5th place Big Ten team.

Looks like only one of those guys has recent losses that shouldn't have happened. This argument is probably not the hill you want to die on.

All of this is beside the fact acquiring superior talent is 100% the responsibility of the coach. To knock a coach because he recruited good players is absurd.


May 1st, 2017 at 7:15 AM ^

The majority of that talent was on the defensive side. As a result the defense was elite. They did their job against Iowa. They did their job against you guys. Without Peppers they did enough against FSU. No one was drafted from the OL. Our starting senior RB wasn't drafted. It was our QB's first year starting.

And the three losses were by a total of 5 points, with one of them going to two overtimes. Great coaching job Urban did to lose by 6x that in a single game.


April 30th, 2017 at 8:44 AM ^

Michigan stopped them last year and Clemson held OSU scoreless.   

I believe that had Speight not thrown any interceptions that Michigan would have held OSU scoreless-   unfortunately we handed OSU 14 points in 2 bad passes.  If Michigan would have had a healthy offensive line last year's game would have been a blowout.   Even with those errors, had the officiating been even close to balanced Michigan would have won easily.

Don Brown's defensive scheme is perfect against OSU's attack and I will be very surprised if Harbaugh doesn't end with a record that is well above .500 against OSU.


April 30th, 2017 at 8:56 AM ^

I think the addition of Kevin Wilson to fOSU changes this outlook significantly.  The OSU team being fielding this upcoming season should be very different on offense from last season and quite honestly, if teams dont figure them out fOSU could be on the verge of multiple CFB playoff births.

I do not want to see this happen and think that we have made strides figuring out Urban Meyer while also improving our team as well.  I think one of the biggest things about our Michigan team is that we are still very much indeed a work in progress and not quite there yet with what Coach Harbaugh wants.  

We also have a Coaching staff that has performed at the highest level of football and are not daunted by fOSU-- but obviously respects them very much.


April 30th, 2017 at 6:02 PM ^

must be off season or something. If Speight's int's were solid picks I would feel better but they were just desperate heaves into a crowd of Buckeyes, lousy picks should never have happened. I had the same thought though, how did they not score against Clemson? The genius conclusion I came to, have a good QB, you win.

We are back

April 30th, 2017 at 8:46 AM ^

With all those great athletes on defense idk how Clemson even scored on them, Kevin Wilson will help there offense hopefully only for one year, I also hope our new Oline coach can give don brown some tips on how to stop Wilson offense


April 30th, 2017 at 8:48 AM ^

In an article I read, it stated that Clemson had superior elite receivers that made a big difference; sprinkle some qb runs in the mix and we get the results of an OSU trashing.

This season, I believe we are going to have a Fun n Gun type offense which is going to be a thing of beauty.  We are going to trash UF.  Trash UF.


April 30th, 2017 at 8:49 AM ^

Michigan had a pick 6 and fumbled on the 1, which is 11 EP right there, but we also didn't have the offense Clemson had. The trick to beating Ohio state's offense is to match them with speed horizontally and beat them up front. Very few teams have the talent to do that. Curtis Samuel is one of the best Edge weapons to come out of college in a long time, and JT Barrett as one of the best at running off of a block. Peppers could only match Samuel not dominate that matchup, and our excellent DL could play both sides of a block most but not all of the time.

So really the difference was Clemson could score and force OSU out of their plodding comfort zone, while Michigan fumbled our opportunity to put the game away. The officiating was part of it because it bailed OSU out when they were in comeback mode, but for me our game really came down to not having the offensive line to sustain drives against OSU's own monsters up front.


April 30th, 2017 at 8:58 AM ^

Thanks for the excellent contribution Seth!


I do wonder what our team needs to do next year specifically and what OSU will look like behind offense.


I think their achilles heel will be with their defense.  If we can score points, we can have a chance.


April 30th, 2017 at 9:15 AM ^

Is it that hard to figure out?  You need to fucking be able to run the ball vs teams with real defenses

  • UM v Iowa: 98 yards on 35 attempts (2.8 per)
  • UM vs OSU; 91 yards on 43 attempts (2.1 per)
  • UM vs FSU: 89 yards on 36 attempts (2.5 per)

Take away that Evans run and its 59 yards on 35 attempts vs FSU (1.7 per)

Yes those #s are depressed by sacks but its not like we were sacked 14 times in the game and lost 80 yards.  Those are pathetic figures.

This team could not run the ball vs legitimate defenses.

Throw Wisconsin's defense in there - 130 yards on 44 carries (2.9 per)

We couldn't get over 3 yards a carry vs the 4 real defenses we faced.  We couldn't run late in games to protect leads.  We couldn't smash the ball down someone's gut when we needed it.  Hate on MSU during their heyday but they had something like a 19 play drive that was mostly on the ground in their last Big 10 championship game winning drive when they needed to go 80 yards.  They dominated the LOS late, and imposed their will.   They went into OSU 2 years ago in the game Urban went stupid and in shit conditions and ran for over 200 yards. 

It's not that difficult to figure out how to win in the Big 10 in November.  Either find a way to run or get your own version of Sam Darnold, Watson, Luck. 

Even with a "game manager" like we had at QB if we had a legit OL who could own the LOS paired with our defense we go undefeated in the regular season last year. 


April 30th, 2017 at 9:27 AM ^

I'm sick of hearing that crap "we won really". 

If you have a real OL and a real running game you don't leave shit to chance.  You don't leave things to chance - you don'rt rely on a ref spot.  You don't get burned by 1 return.  Could we HAVE WON ALL 3 games with our situation? YES!  Would we have won comfortably all 3 games with any ability to impose our will and run for say even 3.8 yards per carry.  YES.  We wouldn't be relying on these "coin flip" plays to pull those out.

Everyone is giddy about this draft but it just pissed me off more to watch us waste a year away with a rarely fielded type of defense, losing to fucking OSU yet the fuck again, and not get to the playoffs and now we have another year of "development" hoping to get another such chance in 2 years.  With OSU just reloading ten 5 stars annually now.  And threads like this saying OSU has been solved when we sit here and spin praying to beat them twice a decade.

Darrel Funk being employed by UM in the formative years of Braden, Magnuson, Kalis and the like IMO cost us this past year.  Grrr.

Year of Revenge II

April 30th, 2017 at 10:11 AM ^

You might be tired of reality too, or want to call it crap, but that doesn't mean you're right. And I don't know where you heard "we won really"---you didn't hear it from me---we lost.  But that fact remains, much to your chagrin evidently, that we had them beat without a mauling ground game.  Would be nice, but always going to be hard to put away a good team but running through or over them. Capiche?

'68 Buckeyes were dubbed the greatest college football team ever, and 60-pt wins were commonplace. They were mostly freshmen in '68, and after getting thumped by them in '68, in '69 we…(you should know this part already)

Get a grip.  We can beat them.  We had them beat last year.  We are going to BEAT them this year.  Last year we knocked on the door.  This year we are going to smash it down.  

Patience.  Not too long ago we had a coach who was aware, but not fully aware; an AD flying planes, shooting fireworks, and mugging for every camera he could see; and shit for a team given our standards.  There is mucho talent on this team, and they are coached well, in the old Michigan tradition, not the post-97 Michigan tradition.

Who wants to play us?  NOBODY.



April 30th, 2017 at 2:55 PM ^

OSU's offense figured out-  let's see-  Michigan held them to close to 0 points away, Clemson held OSU to 0-  Yeah, I think it's figured out.

Refs affecting the game-  dude it wasn't just one spot-  OSU had 6 yards of penalties for the whole game + 2 overtime periods.  That is very much a statistical outlier.  It wasn't that the refs missed the spot, it was probably at least 5 calls, probably more like 10 calls that were missed.

OSU averaged 54 yards of penalties a game-    what do you think the random statistical chance is that they only committed 6 yard of penalties in a double overtime game?

Michigan's had a poor offensive line for years-  I think this is the first year that we will see a real improvement and next year will be much better.

Learn to enjoy the victories-  OSU has been recruiting at a near Alabama level for 5 or 6 years, Michigan is close now and I believe that our superior coaching (Harbaugh and Brown) wll provide Michigan the edge long term.

Was this a year that could have been?  Yes, but things did not bounce our way and the OSU game was stolen by the officials.

Year of Revenge II

April 30th, 2017 at 9:04 AM ^

For those of you too young to remember real heartache (i.e. when we were relevant, and except for 2006, it has been a long time), this was a classic Michigan loss.  Our own mistakes compounded with those of the officials produced an L for the better team.

I disagree with your point analysis, but what does it matter?  (Fumble cost us momentum, but not points, as we got the ball back and scored TD on a short field)  The play that really killed us, and, again, in classic Michigan style because it was totally unnecessary, was Cole's facemask on a defender after screen pass had gotten first down plus about 20 more.  Cole is flagged for offensive facemask (who DOES that?), and Speight throws pick 6 on next play from near our own goal after penalty.  That REALLY killed momentum and got them in the game they had no business winning.  Refs took care of the rest of their business.

Still, Clemson kicking their ass was a bit shocking; however, mayble they expected Clemson and the Refs to giftwrap it for them like we did.

I have a great feeling that this year will be different.


April 30th, 2017 at 9:02 AM ^

If I'm an OSU fan, I hope plenty.

I've always thought Urban was his own worst enemy. I'm still convinced that if Michigan doesn't break JT Barrett's leg in 2014, Meyer isn't forced to realize he should be running Elliott (who then rattles off like three 250 yd games in a row) and they don't win out.


BTW, some talking head was going on about how only RichRod has lost his first 3 games to OSU and that, if Harbaugh loses this year, he will be on the hot seat. I realize that there are no moral victories here, but I think most UM fans don't really consider last year to be a loss (at least one that can be pinned on Harbaugh).


April 30th, 2017 at 9:10 AM ^

I'm in the boat that even if we lose to OSU, you dont run Harbaugh off.  That would be extremely stupid and he doesn't need to be on the hot seat.  

Fans can see the direction we are going in, and I'm very pleased with that.

Besides, I cant think of another coach I would want besides the current one.  I'm sure besides the excellent team we are building there will be MANY future coaches that have played for Harbaugh.


April 30th, 2017 at 11:25 AM ^

I agree. 0-3 would not be good. He needs to win this year, I think we probably will.

If he doesn't win this year, I will start to be concerned... At some point, he does have to beat OSU. There is a threshold to the 0 and X against those guys. 0 and 5? His overall great record buys some time for sure.


April 30th, 2017 at 12:10 PM ^

In my opinion, the OSU clock starts this year. The roster previous two seasons was Hoke's. It was a talented roster but it wasn't one that Harbaugh recruited. Meyer also has a 3 year head start on him. So while Harbaugh is techincally 0-2, in my eyes he is 0-0. This year the roster is majority Harbaugh so moving forward he does not get any slack.

I'm also not expecting Harbaugh to remain in Ann Arbor for more than a decade (nor do I expect Meyer to remain at OSU for that long) so he's probably here for another 8 years regardless of his record against OSU.


April 30th, 2017 at 12:41 PM ^

Why do you think Harbaugh will leave? He seems to be having the time of his life. His family, including his parents are happy too. Not many coaches voluntarily leave Ann Arbor for supposedly greener pastures. I foresee him sticking around until he is in his 70s, maybe even longer. I have a hard time seeing Harbaugh retiring at all honestly, that's too uncompetitive for him.


April 30th, 2017 at 9:06 AM ^

The biggest surprise of that game to me was Clemson's defense shutting OSU out. (I loved that it happened, but was still surprised).

Clemson's defense was torched by Florida State and Louisville, granted those were two offensive powers, but they also gave up 24 to Troy and 43 at home to Pitt. And they had no business winning the NC State game but that's a whole other can of worms.