January 8th, 2013 at 8:18 AM ^

Ohio State and Nebraska should be good, but the other teams all have huge question marks - Michigan (OL), Wisconsin (new coach), Penn State (possible shortage of talent).  OSU very well could have been in the national championship game this year, and it's kind of ridiculous to think that it probably would have been Notre Dame vs. Ohio State (if OSU won the Big Ten championship).  Nick Saban can thank Jim Tressel for this national championship.


January 8th, 2013 at 10:25 AM ^

Wonder how much of that was due to the attention Hankins demanded.  He was an absolute beast.  Thanks for letting him leave the state, RR.

Amazing on how different our line-play was this year losing two NFL players. :(


January 8th, 2013 at 12:10 AM ^

Bama will not be back in 2013. They lose 2/5, 3/5 their O-line, have a true Soph and RS Fr as their running backs and studs at WR... 2014, maybe, 2013- no. It's a year for Oregon to run show and probably play Ohia unless we can bust them here in A2 next year


January 8th, 2013 at 12:17 AM ^

I agree with you that they won't be back. I think 'Bama is usually invincible, but next year they'll lose 2 or 3 games. Yes they reload, but I definitely see them losing a few games. I do still think they'll be one of the best 3-5 teams in the country though.


January 8th, 2013 at 12:15 AM ^

Meh. We're replacing a lot of a parts still. We haven't demonstrated that we can run the ball without Denard and our secondary will be a question mark going into next season (How do we replace Kovacs, can Countess come back, will the other). The best case scenario is definitely a Big Ten championship, but a 9-3 season similiar to this one (replacing Alabama with UConn being the difference) seems more likely. That will set up the 2014 season where we will finally be back to the old Michigan standard of elite talent. 


January 8th, 2013 at 6:27 AM ^

Kovacs was a good tackler, descent on the blitz but a major liability in coverage. If you dont believe me watch the SC game again and check how many times he got burned or was just late getting over to help.  I'm kind of excited about the defense next year. Will athletic upgrades to the D line, LB corp and secondary make up for the lack of experience? Will the freshman and sophmores bust ass this offseason to get to where they need to be?



January 8th, 2013 at 8:46 AM ^

I guess we can agree to disagree. How many busted safety coverages before the SC game can you remember? Or how many long runs? Kovacs played a huge part in our defense usually being pretty good at avoiding giving up the big play. And while I'm optimistic the guys behind them can replace them, it seems a tad premature to say that they will. 


January 8th, 2013 at 8:52 AM ^

He did a good job for what he was asked to do, but you have to realize that Greg Mattison did a masterful job of covering up his weaknesses.  He - unlike Rodriguez's staff - put Kovacs in the box and didn't mess with putting him in deep coverage, because he knew that Kovacs couldn't hack it back there.  It handicaps your defense quite a bit when one of your safeties is too slow and stiff to play the deep middle or a deep half.  We've heard numerous times that Mattison wants his safeties to be interchangeable (play both FS and SS), but they couldn't do that with Kovacs.


January 8th, 2013 at 9:33 AM ^

I mean, the guy wasn't 6'4" with a 4.3 40 but the guy was always in his spot. He's probably the best safety we've had in 10 years. It'd be great if someone could make a Kovacs highlight tape (ala Denard) and we would really remember how money he is.

I'll take a 6 foot slow guy who is almost never out of position over someone athletic getting torched over the top. I cannot remember a single time where Kovacs got smoked over the top (I didn't actually get to see the bowl game but when both starting corners are out of the game, I'll give Kovacs the benefit of the doubt)

Kovacs is the freakin man and we will miss him when someone gets smoked next year or they miss an easy tackle


January 8th, 2013 at 6:31 AM ^

 There is no way our interior line could play worse than it did most of this season. Even Lewan for all his hype and accomplishments didn't play very well. If he comes back for his senior season our O line would be a lot better overall with Kalis, Bryant and Miller?

Sione's Flow

January 8th, 2013 at 12:47 AM ^

Don't think tsiO will post another perfect season next year and hopefully UM puts the first blemish on their record although if they come in AA with a loss or two, I won't be totally upset.

Wolverine Devotee

January 8th, 2013 at 12:47 AM ^

I'm not worrying about that MNCG game where stupid computers decide who plays. I'm more focused on the game on NYD you play yourself into. On the field. I'll never forget the pain that system put us through in 2006. Tomorrow should be the 6th anniversary of Michigan beating ohio for the MNC.

Crazy enough, Rose Bowl 100 is next year. Possibility of the two teams that started it all, Michigan and stanford, could meet.