Outback Bowl Snowflake Thread

Submitted by justingoblue on January 1st, 2013 at 5:01 PM

Individual thoughts on the game go here. New threads about the game not containing news that is threadworthy or some kind of (relatively) complex analysis will be deleted for the rest of the evening.



January 1st, 2013 at 6:41 PM ^

*Gallon was awesome.  The way he way was getting out of his breaks and how he highpointed the ball was impressive.

*Wile kicked the ball very well overall while impersonating Mike Gillette.  

*Gardner showed solid leadership and despite missing some throws gave Michigan a chance to win.

*A lot of underclassman gained valuable playing time against a top 10 team.

*Vincent Smith still has his head attached.


January 1st, 2013 at 7:31 PM ^

Just got back from the game. What a great experience. Our fans were awesome - it felt like a home game for us just walking around. After the first series, I feared another Alabama debacle, but this team showed great character and that they came to play. Regardless of Gardner's inconsistencies/indecisiveness and our suspect secondary play, we kept South Carolina honest, kept Clowney in check for most of the game, and our offense held its own against a good defense, first time we've done that all year. Someone's gotta lose, and we did, but it wasn't a foregone conclusion. Holding my head high in St. Pete Beach tonight, still wearing my M wear. 

Blue Mike

January 1st, 2013 at 7:23 PM ^

It would be nice to hear some explanation about Clowney's hit, and why the play wasn't ruled dead on the spot.  I mean, they just changed the rule this year, that play should be the posterchild for the rule.  Clowney leads with his helmet, hits Smith in the helmet, the helmet comes flying violently off, and now that's going to be the showcase of Clowney's heisman bid for 2013.  It would be nice to know why that's considered a legal play.

Not that it matters, since SC should have had the ball anyways.


January 1st, 2013 at 7:51 PM ^

Not too much to add. I agree with many comments already made. Early on, this game could have been lost, but they fought and fought and fought. A couple of things I haven't seen here:
1. In person, Swearinger was the SEC personified. He was a clown all game and showed his character when his coach tried to pull him back and he shoved the coach.
2. I was pretty frustrated that Denard wasn't in on the first play, or that series. We needed the QB oh-noes play so badly in this game and it would have worked so well. SC did everything possible to contain Denard.
3. I am so proud of team 133. After the game we waited for the players to come out, and they were gracious and magnanimous despite having lost the game. What a great example of character for my 8 year old son about how to carry yourself.
4. I thought Gardner was pretty good, but he seemed jittery early. He settled in later.

Two comments to reiterate. The "inspirational loss" comment above rings very true. And OMFG were the jerseys awful!!!!! It was impossible to read the numbers on the field, and we had pretty good seats.


January 1st, 2013 at 10:17 PM ^

I couldn't believe that when the SC player shoved his own coach, on the field for the entire stadium to see.  They didn't even take the kid out or discipline him.  Could you imagine if one of our guys did this to Mattison or Hoke?  In addition,I believe SC had numerous personal fouls and acted poorly all game.  I asked a couple of SC fans if they were proud of that type of behavior.  No response.

All in all it was one of the best games I've seen in person and I really thought we were going to leave RayJay with a win on that last drive. 


January 1st, 2013 at 7:56 PM ^

With all the trick plays and everything I kept thinking about the Bourbon Bowl in The Waterboy...

"Last game of the year, can't hold anything back now"


January 1st, 2013 at 8:09 PM ^

Overall, as disappointed as I am with the big plays we gave up, I feel like we played better than we did in the Sugar Bowl last year. Sucks to lose on a busted coverage though.


January 1st, 2013 at 8:28 PM ^

I am not sure if i am just whiny or if this is something many of you are thinking, but why does the Big Ten stink and why have we been bad for the past 5+ years? It is great that we are competing in some of these games, but the end result in the end is all that matters and the Big Ten just is not getting it done.

The most unfortunate fact is that the Big Ten is going to gain more revenue this year than last, so it is going to be looked at as a success. I guess I am just waiting for the Big Ten to make some serious changes in Football to materialize into wins on the football field.

And hiring MAC coaches isn't the answer.

Getting off my whining soapbox now.


January 1st, 2013 at 8:44 PM ^

But I guess I just expect more out of Michigan. Right or wrong that is just the way I think. I would never think that Michigan would have a bad matchup being put up against South Carolina.

Regarding the Big Ten, they haven't had consistent bowl success for 10 years, so unless they have just had bad matchups every year then the improvement is just not there.

User -not THAT user

January 1st, 2013 at 9:20 PM ^

By the time I was 11 years old I had seen Michigan lose four (4) consecutive New Year's Day bowl games...Orange, Rose, Rose, Rose.  Bo had been head coach in Ann Arbor for TWELVE YEARS before winning his first bowl game...and he is probably the most revered coach in the program's history.

I guess the takeaway I have is that as bad as it is watching Michigan lose bowl games that they had a legitimate chance to win, they were losing bigger games than this decades ago when they were a much better team.

The Big Ten hasn't been the premier conference in the country since before most of the posters on this board (myself included) were born.


January 1st, 2013 at 11:06 PM ^

I think the Big 10 was possibly the best conference in the mid to late 90's.  PSU should have won a share of the NC in '94.  Michigan won a NC in '97  Both PSU and UM were solid programs.  OSU was a fixture in the Top 10.  Saban had turned MSU around, highligted by an upset in 1998 at OSU, which possibly cost OSU a NC, and followed up with a 10-2 year in 1999.  Mason had turned Minnesota into a decent program.  Northwestern won back to back Big Ten titles.  Tiller had Purdue on the upswing.  Alvarez had established Wisconsin as a solid program.  OSU won a Rose Bowl and a Sugar Bowl.  Michigan won a Sugar Bowl and the Big Ten won the Rose Bowl after the '92, '93, '94, '96, '97. ;98 and ;99 seasons.


January 1st, 2013 at 9:04 PM ^

Yep, Don Canham sure made a major error in hiring that guy out of Miami of Ohio. And Utah fucked up in hiring that guy from Bowling Green a few years ago, too. Come to think of it, Cincinnati screwed up in hiring that guy from CMU as well.


January 1st, 2013 at 9:25 PM ^

With the exception of us and Bo (who spent 6 years at Miami and established himself as a premier coach), all those other programs are programs from conferences below the Big Ten. It doesn't matter if they whiff on a coaching hire, because nobody cares about Cincinnati football or Utah football, or their conferences either (Big East and MWC when they hired those coaches). Granted, most people don't care about Purdue or Minnesota either, but they care about Big Ten football.

So it's not really "Never hire a Coach from the MAC", but more like Brian said, don't hire a MAC coach whose team managed to get hot for a year and win the MAC, hire proven coaches instead

dazedand blue

January 1st, 2013 at 11:02 PM ^

If Ohio and Penn St. were eligible this year, we would have seen more favorable matchups.  As much as I hate Ohio, I think they would've beat Stanford.  That also would've moved Wisconsin to a lower tier bowl which I think they could've won.  O'Brien had PSU playing pretty good this year and they may have won a bowl, but I'm not real confident of that.  JMHO.


January 1st, 2013 at 11:10 PM ^

It might not have changed the match ups today.  A 7-5 Wisky who didn't play in the conference title game probably wouldn't have been playing on NY's Day.  The only question is whether an 8-4 PSU would have gotten a NY's Day berth over 9-3 Northwestern, 10-3 Nebraska or 8-4 Michigan. 


January 1st, 2013 at 8:31 PM ^

           The kid cannot (yet) block for spit.  SC's D-line would have destroyed him, and this knowledge was common knowledge.  Hence putting him in game gives none of the deceptive benefits of a pass catching TE-- he's just a giant slow WR with good hands at this point in his career.  He will eventually be very good though, IMHO.

SF Wolverine

January 1st, 2013 at 8:44 PM ^

Gardner was just a bit too up in the first half; if Tacopants existed and was suited up, we are in an entirely different situation.  Another slow start against a very well-matched opponent, and we just couldn't dig out of the hole we dug.  I come down on the side of Lewan clearly besting Clowney over sixty minutes, but Clowney did what impact players need to do, and that won them the game. 

I agree Floyd is no lock-down corner, but I think he would have performed better than Raymon today, and would have prevented SC from knowing where to throw on every single down.

Any way that Lewan assauges the pain by deciding to stay for a shot at a B10 championship?


January 1st, 2013 at 8:55 PM ^

hit was the football gods saying "no Michigan, you did not earn that first down and now you must pay"

Clowney hit was amazing, textbook for a man of his size to get so low on Vincent Smith, all the newschool football mumbo jumbo aside (helmet to helmet).


January 1st, 2013 at 9:12 PM ^

It seems to me that this year, anytime an offense got close to a first down on 3rd down or earlier, then the refs would just grant the first down rather than taking time to measure. Almost like a second baseman not having to touch the bag on a double play.

((Never on 4th down w a change of possession hanging in the balance, however.)

Has anyone else noticed this (or heard anything about it)?

Perhaps the "close enough" first down was a misapplication of a new unwritten rule?


January 1st, 2013 at 9:35 PM ^

I really thought the defense would hold there at the end. At worst give up a long FG attempt and hope SC missed again and we get out of there with a great upset win.

It's soooo disappointing to see a Senior like Kovacs torched on the last TD play. What could he possible have been thinking? Such a horrendous day by the pass defense. Please god Hoke, recruit better DB's

The entire season was a story of coming up just a little short in big games. This game just adds to that story line

SC Wolverine

January 1st, 2013 at 9:46 PM ^

It's never good to lose, but if this is what Michigan looks like while Hoke is still building our roster, sign me up for the good times.  That was a very good SC team and we went toe to toe with them.  We were playing freshmen extensively on the defense, have no running game outside of Denard, Devin has played receiver most of the year, and our O-line is lousy (although they were decent today, I have to say).  What will our '14 team look like?  I think we may well be playing a few days after New Years Day a couple of years ago, as Hoke builds our team further upwards.  Very proud of the Wolverines today -- smash mouth football played against what is probably a better roster.

dazedand blue

January 1st, 2013 at 9:52 PM ^

I think we played well and should have won this game.  It gives me a lot of hope for the future.  We just have to learn how to finish games like this. 

Did anyone else notice how many B1G receivers dropped the ball today?  That to me was the big difference in the games today.  SEC receivers do not drop the ball, period!   


January 1st, 2013 at 10:22 PM ^

I predicted a Michigan loss because we had so many problem issues including:

Featured RB gone and subpar back ups
Starting QB recovering from injury back-up QB with limited snaps
Starting QB moved to other position with minimal practice
No deep WR threat
underperforming O-line
Suspect playcalling from the OC
Questionable time management from the HC
weak defensive backfield with 2 season starters missing
special teams player promoted to defensive backfield
lack of pass rush without blitzes
suboptimal punt formation/coverage

I think just about every issue reared it's head in one form or another.  Devin hurried/sacked & missed some throws.  Interception. The running game was mostly Denard, but with limits.  We couldn't get to their QB "enough".  We let them return a punt for a TD.  Our secondary gave up many big plays.

But I'm not that upset about this loss.  Strangely, I think Al did a better than average job with plays, though I think Denard was  a bit underutilized.  Devin needs work but is getting there.  The secondary got torched, but it wasn't a surprise (Never Forget® the sequel? )and I think Mattison was right to be as aggresive as he could.  I'm dissapointed in the loss, but we played hard.  Lewan looked good :-(  Kicking game was great, Gallon rocked, etc.
No crying in my pillow tonight.

Ron Utah

January 1st, 2013 at 10:28 PM ^

SC made the plays that were given to them, and we didn't. We had open receivers for long passes and missed them. We had a sack on the last drive and didn't tackle. We had good coverages called and didn't make plays.

They hit long passes in tight seams. They made a fumble out of a hand off. They just made a few more plays than we did.

In my opinion, we had a chance to win the game and didn't execute. Sure the coaching could have been better. But we missed chances that were there and they took the opportunities we gave them.

I look forward to having a better offensive line, an improved DG, and an even better defense next year. I think we will make a few more plays.

The Truth Hurts

January 1st, 2013 at 10:29 PM ^

In the last 25 years, B1G Teams are 72-88 in bowl games 40 -52 in games on NYD or after.  Michigan has a winning record of 12-11.  They have 2 national championships with PSU getting hosed in 1994.   Their worst bowl season had to be in 08 with a  1-6 record.  So get used to it young ones, nothing will change considering we will always play out our area.   The B1G just use they bowl games as extra practice time anyway.  In the last 5 years, the B1G has a record of 14-25, 8 -18 for games that happened NYD or later.


January 1st, 2013 at 10:42 PM ^

I'll add to the pile of snowflakes.


  • Borges play-calling. We had some long drives there. Very creative plays (statue of liberty, Denard running, direct snap, receiving, and passing.
  • Mattison play-calling. He disguised blitzes, played a zone that kept receivers covered, did a good job.
  • Hoke's guttsiness. I commented during the game that Carr never would have gone for it the same way, or done the same trickeration.
  • Offensive Line. Given Clowney et al, they did a great job.
  • LB play. I thought our linebackers did fine.
  • Denard's play. 100 yards, very solid.
  • Gallon's receiving. Boy did he ever get open. And he's back next year.


  • Defensive Line tackling. They just didn't get to the QB enough.
  • Devin's passing. I started counting the number of passes that were either uncatchable or close to that. I'm waiting for the UFR on this, but I recall at least 4 - 5 passes to Gallon that were off the mark, and needlessly so.
  • Secondary gouged with big plays. IIRC, there were four huge pass completions against our secondary.
  • Punt coverage. Admittedly, Ace is a great returner.

It just kills me that there were 3 passes where our secondary was torched, along with the punt return TD. Our defense generally did a great job. If our secondary and special teams stop half those plays, we win.


January 1st, 2013 at 10:55 PM ^

I won't say it's always the right call, or it hasn't or won't cost us sometimes....but after years of lacking it I love it. Creativity, trying to win, aggressiveness. After everyone complaining about lacking it or a LONG time people bitching about it boggles my mind. Typical fan stuff of when it works it's right and when it doesn't it's stupid.


January 1st, 2013 at 11:06 PM ^

If I had to describe Michigan fans in a nut shell...

"God dammit, Carr! Punting for it on 4th and a couple, late in the 4th with a 1 score lead! Play to win the game, not to protect the lead! You're gonna blow it!"

"God dammit, Hoke! Going for it on 4th and couple, late in the 4th with a 1 point lead! Play to protect the lead! You're taking too many risks! You're gonna blow it!"