Question re: QBs and 2008 Season

Submitted by Kilgore Trout on April 15th, 2010 at 12:28 AM

There is the widely assumed thought that even if Carr had returned for 2008, we would have been in trouble given that the QBs turned out to be Threet and Sheridan. It seems to be the consensus of those in the know that Mallett was gone when Mustain left Arkansas and I can buy that. I'm not convinced he would have been a huge success despite his obvious physical tools.

Were there any other recruiting targets that could have come in once Mallett transfered? In the alternate universe where Carr doesn't retire, would he really have been choosing between Threet and Cone (I don't believe Sheridan gets into the picture under Carr)? I know that Weinke decommitted once Carr retired, but his Rivals ranking was lower than Threet's. Looking at Rivals, it looks like the #2 and #3 pro-style qbs had UM interest (Crist and Glennon). Did we have a chance to get one of those guys late? Would it really have been the Threet and Coner show?



April 15th, 2010 at 12:40 AM ^

So you want to play the what-if game to events that happened two years ago? This may have been a relevant post last season, but now... Pass. Contrary to your post, I believe Sheridan was already coming as a walk-on under Carr. And I don't mean to sound like a d*** but there are quite too many variables to calculate in this one. What happened, happened, let's worry about next season.

And yes, I do believe Threet would have been a decent substitute under a pro-style offense. Just young and inexperienced.


April 15th, 2010 at 1:00 AM ^

I love how you criticize the OP in the first sentence; declare that you "pass" in response to dismissing the OP in your second sentence; then offer two specific, and on-point, opinions after declaring you don't want to "sound like a d***."

You worked very hard to poop on the OP, to then turn around and answer (quite appropriately I might add) the OP.

Therefore, your response loses all credibility because the otherwise legit opinions are draped in high-pitched whining and bitchy-tantrum-throwing-dismissiveness.

Chose one. Or don't waste our time.


April 15th, 2010 at 12:40 AM ^

Scot Loeffler would have stayed therefore (IMHO) Mallett would have stayed. Loeffler leaving was an unknown piece of the puzzle that was missing for Ryan. The lingering residue from the fired coaches is a big reason why we have sensed mutiny inside the Michigan program. Lets move forward!


April 15th, 2010 at 1:21 AM ^

Mallett transferred because he did not want to play in a run oriented spread offense. It had nothing to do with a perceived "Lloyd Carr rift" or "being pushed out by Rich Rodriguez".

Bando Calrissian

April 15th, 2010 at 2:24 AM ^

For anyone who was around campus during his time in A2, stories of Mallett either making an ass of himself at any number of opportunities and/or being completely miserable with the weather and his situation at Michigan were a dime a dozen. There were too many of them out there not to think there was a strong element of truth running through the whole thing. I don't think it's a fair assumption that under most any situation he would have been back in 2008. At the end of the day, though, nobody knows the full situation but Ryan, his family, and the coaching staffs at both schools.

I will say this, though: For all the talk about Ryan not getting along with his teammates, he voluntarily came back up to Ann Arbor for his spring break in March of 2008, and came along with all the football players to Dance Marathon, looking to me like there was no visible tension or ill will amongst any of them. Just looked like one of the guys. Take that for what it's worth...


April 15th, 2010 at 5:25 AM ^

Mallett was as good as gone eventually. He had wanted to commit to Arkansas all along, but chose Michigan in large part because he figured Mustain was going to be a huge impediment in getting PT. Once Mustain bailed out to USC, the way was open for Mallett to go back home.

There is an alternate universe in which Pat White doesn't get hurt, WVU beats Pitt, RR goes to the NC game, gets a 10-yr extension, and Michigan hires Les Miles, who had just missed out on getting into the NC game. Miles tells Mallett that he'll tailor the offense after his skills, and Michigan goes 8-4 and 7-5 in the 2008 and 2009 seasons. The Michigan fan base is thoroughly disgruntled with The Hat, and Miles is generally judged to be "on the hot seat."

And Justin Boren still bails for OSU after Miles tells him the Mr. Plow crap has to end, and his brother doesn't get a Michigan offer. Mike Boren blasts Miles as a "traitor" to the Michigan brotherhood. Some things are universal.


April 15th, 2010 at 9:14 AM ^

As much as I dislike all this speculation, it certainly is fun.

I've heard (at a "purple monkey dishwasher" distance) that Lloyd used his remaining political capital to screw Les Miles, so maybe we would've wound up with Kirk Ferentz or (eeee) Brady Hoke.

As for Mr. Plow, Boren Sr. may be in the Les Miles fan club, so Zack Boren would have been blocking for Carlos Brown last year.

One of my favorite scenarios (however unlikely) is the one where Mallet plays for RichRod and they both compromise a little bit. I'm guessing there would have been a few more wins that year.

On the subject of coaches, Harbaugh is certainly interesting (but by no measure a sure thing IMO), but I think Miles has peaked. I'd rather not talk about Hoke / English.


April 15th, 2010 at 8:25 AM ^

starting his Sophomore year (2008) under Carr, no matter how shaky that year might have been in terms of wins and losses. But I suppose he might have left when he did, after the 2007 season.

If we are talking about an alternative universe where Carr decides to stay and Mallett still leaves, then what the OP is not accounting for is the strong probability, really almost a certainty, I would think, that Carr brings in one of the nation's top quarterback recruits in the 2008 class if Mallett leaves when he did. So you're looking at a two-way competition for the starting job in 2008, between Threet and the unknown recruit, with a good possibility that the recruit ends up starting. 2008 is probably still a tough year (due to an inexperienced quarterback), even with Boren in place and no change in the DC.

Speculating beyond that is pointless, because Lloyd's 2009 recruiting class is going to look very different from Rich's.


April 15th, 2010 at 8:11 AM ^

I know it's a popular belief that Mallett was out the door regardless of who the coach was, but I have never heard that from anyone other than Scout board people. AFAIK, Mallett has never said it and neither has Rodriguez or anyone associated with the program.

I think that's the easiest thing to believe for Michigan fans. They like to believe that the outcome of 2008 was inevitable, but oddly, this whole theory didn't really seem to take hold until 2009.

Anyway, I can't picture Mallett leaving Michigan if Lloyd Carr was still the coach. Carr churned out NFL quarterback after NFL quarterback. The best QB to come out of Arkansas in the last 20 years is probably Matt Jones, whose 6'7", 240 lb. frame simply allowed him to do more coke than your average-sized 6'3", 215 lb. quarterback . . . and he was so good at the position that the Jaguars were forced to find another position at which he could fail spectacularly.

If Carr were still the coach, Mallett would probably be in the discussion for the 2nd best quarterback on NFL draft boards right now. It would be Bradford and then an all-out battle between douchebags Mallett and Clausen to be the Rams franchise QB.


April 15th, 2010 at 10:03 AM ^

Mallett has publicly said that he left because he didn't want to play in Rodriguez's offense. We don't know how hard Rodriguez tried to change his mind or whether it was even possible, since "spread offense = no NFL4U" is so deeply ingrained in everyone's logic.

If Rodriguez is gone after this year, Brandon needs to look hard at this example and think twice about hiring a coach who will not take advantage of our stellar QB recruiting and essentially squander the most talented position on the team.


April 15th, 2010 at 10:14 AM ^

I don't think Brandon would be dumb enough to revert to a pro-style offense with Tate, Denard, and Devin in the mix. I also don't think he's dumb enough to think that the spread can't work in the Big Ten.

I could see him hiring a coach who doesn't rely on the read option quite so much, but the spread is here to stay, whether Rodriguez is the coach or not (in my opinion).


April 15th, 2010 at 10:57 AM ^

I think you're right, but what if he has to choose between a mediocre coach who runs a spread offense and a better candidate who is committed to a pro offense? Does this mean that Harbaugh is out of the picture unless he commits to running the spread? The obvious best choice with this logic looks like Pat Fitzgerald, but what if he's not interested? Should we hire a mediocre coach like Gary Pinkel to avoid a painful offensive transition? Three years ago, I would have said "no way", but now, I think that I have changed my mind.


April 15th, 2010 at 8:56 AM ^

We already lived through one scenario that sucked. Why must we also live through other hypothetical scenarios that would suck?

"Sure, your wife was cheating on you with your boss. But what if your boss had been a woman, and your wife slept with the neighbor instead?"

Kalamazoo Blue

April 15th, 2010 at 9:24 AM ^

I know we played football in 2008 because I have a t-shirt that says we did and I have ticket stubs. But I just can't remember any of the details. I can't explain this.


April 15th, 2010 at 9:58 AM ^

Right. But the sentiment is still valid - if we are playing this storytelling game (which is all it is - who can come up with the best fictive story), then some qb recruit would have jumped at the chance to come in and compete, making the Threet/Sheridan scenario as much a fiction as the Mallet transferring scenario is. But if we are playing the game, then who?


April 15th, 2010 at 9:46 AM ^

Just because Mallet's unhappiness with the weather, with Carr, with being away from home, etc. made his decision to leave easier after the extreme regime change does not mean the decision was inevitable. Those factors made the decision easier once he knew a new coach was installing a system that would not showcase his talents. But minus the systemic change, you only have ancillary factors that many college kids far away from home go through (the difference is that he was in the spotlight). Don't confuse contributing factors with inevitability. The idea that Mallet would have transferred anyway is, to me, quite weak.

Crime Reporter

April 15th, 2010 at 10:15 AM ^

All this time, I had convinced myself the 2008 season never happened, that it was an anomaly. I know something happened, but I convinced myself the team was on vacation that year.


April 15th, 2010 at 4:10 PM ^

Were there any other recruiting targets that could have come in once Mallett transfered?

Yes. There was the #1 prospect in the country. Unfortunately, he picked OSU over us.


April 15th, 2010 at 6:16 PM ^

That's not valid in this argument - the setting is who Carr would have brought in had Mallet transferred. Carr would not likely have recruited Pryor for his pro-style offense, nor would Pryor have thought of Michigan as a destination (not to mention that he followed RR here).