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Recent Comments

Date Title Body
11/15/2016 - 10:40am It's impossible to be objective,

as I grew up in Iowa City and the coaches, athletes, and AD (Bump) were often neighbors and friends.

I'm glad a few Meechiganders enjoyed Kinnick and that our statewide village culture welcomed people well.

It was always a hope that I would come home, after working in DC and points foreign for a long time, but it is an equally significant pleasure to learn that others enjoy the Iowa City experience as well.

I commend TCF Bank/Minn to any traveling Wolverine.  Equally welcoming, better amenities, great student body support.

The only place I have been threatened during a college football game was when I took a client to the Horseshoe, and dared to cheer the Hawks from the 45 yard-line.  In front of his own young boys some guy told me to shut up or else.  Charming.

02/24/2015 - 2:10pm Steve Deace

I have no opinion on Deace's board posting on Rudock leaving, because he doesn't name his source(s).

However, Deace cut his teeth in sports radio and was a prominent sports radio talkshow host.  He's as wired as anyone, and probably moreso than the print media guys, on rumors such as JR.

In regard to all the ranting about his politics, he's a prominent social and religious conservative, and he's deeply influential within that community.  Any social conservative running for president has to kiss his ring.  He's syndicated and published nationally.  

But the important point is that is that dismissing him because he now does politics is quite foolish.  He's formerly a professional sports radio jock in the Des Moines market.

Rudock is pre-med, very bright, and very serious, apparently, about trying to be a pediactric surgeon.  Unless he mistakenly thinks he can play in the NFL, I would be surprised if playing one year for Harbaugh makes sense to him longterm.  But the Iowa staff has really screwed up the QB position the past three years, functionally and politically, so who knows how much bad blood is on the floor.  All I can compare the bowl game, and subsequent announcement that Beathard is now the #1, to is how the Redskins manage their QBs.  

12/30/2014 - 5:12pm Iowa City born and bred.  The

Iowa City born and bred.  The Elliots are family friends, though, and in college at a little school in Ohio, I watched more Michigan football than Iowa.  We played Michigan's defense and I was the guy called a 'monster.'  No one tackled like Michigan under Bo.

This hire is great for Michigan football and great for the Big Ten.  I'm happy for you, for the game, and the conference.

02/10/2014 - 6:44pm Entire premise (above and here) is mistaken.

Marble drew Stauskas, not Gesell.  Gesell was aggressive on ball-screens, not guarding Stauskas.  Versus the first game, that was they key defensive move.  (I realize that this fact invalidates the explanation.)  The second changeup was cheating the bigs out high to frustrate the roll.  Beilein was surprised enough by the changes that in his press conference he refused to discuss them, allowing that he wasn't going to do OSU's scouting for them.

Calling Gesell an "Iowa safety" is good, but given the number of them in the NFL, somewhat counterintuitive.  Gesell, unlike an Iowa safety, leads the basketball league in TO/Assist ratio.  

Other than that, the story was accurate.

01/22/2014 - 2:45pm 2nd v last.

Iowa is second in the league in blocked shots; Michigan is last.  Uthoff is second on the team in blocked shots; he will be playing on the perimeter.  

So I think your comment is very insightful.  

01/22/2014 - 1:26pm If Michigan can score without perimeter shooting,

then Michigan is going to win.  

However, there's no way Iowa gives the game away by sagging off the pick-and-roll perimeter stuff as Wiscy did.

Marble and, I suspect, Uthoff, will be charged with hassling the perimeter and Stauskas.  Uthoff is 6'9" and can play the 2-4, though he's too skinny to bang.  Uthoff also is second on the team in blocks.  Marble, btw, is not 6'6".  He's at least 6'7".  Last, Oglesby is not just a shooting statue, he plays very smart, effective D.

Looking forward to the contest.  I think Iowa will attempt to force Michigan to win it down low.

01/22/2014 - 1:21pm Iowa's point guard leads the

Iowa's point guard leads the big ten in assists/turnover ratio.  The #2 point guard is 6'7" and has already been Big Ten POW.  

01/22/2014 - 1:16pm Iowa average RPI loss is ... 6.

UM's is 35.  This figure represents the average RPI position this week of teams both schools have lost to.

 

Iowa's average win RPI is 159; UM's is 144.  (See above.)

11/24/2013 - 1:51pm No, as a football player, I don't get it.

He runs away from contact, throws off his back foot, carries the ball in the wrong hand, and cries in press conferences.  Who wants to follow that guy into a contest of the manly arts?

11/24/2013 - 12:22pm Curious as to why

there's all this sympathy for Gardner.  He's a QB on a 7-4 team who runs away from contact (runs backwards several times a game), arm-punts passess into the wind to avoid more contact, and then runs with the ball in the wrong arm.  Why doesn't Michigan play someone who wants to be on the field and respect the game with appropriate technique?

There are teams everywhere with losing records and no talent (neither condition applies to Michigan) who field gritty QBs who try to play the game right.  This guy took a dive against MSU and has been running away from his job ever since.

 

11/18/2013 - 3:05pm Walsh also frankly admitted in one of his books

that gameday presented too much stress for a coach to sequence plays optimally, and noted how pleasureable it was, by comparison to sit quietly on a Tuesday night and assemble them.    Iowa, unusually, almost always takes the ball on the 1Q kickoff, and scripts the first 15 or so.  

11/18/2013 - 2:08pm Corrections reflecting week 12 stats:

So Iowa moved up over its bye weekend.

9th overall D, 10th pass D, 12th scoring D, and 25th rush D.

In the past when Iowa had these numbers on defense it went to a major bowl and lost maybe 2 games.  However, the offense stutters, and during the good years special teams were a net positive.

11/18/2013 - 12:21pm Ferentz plays everybody close.

Purdue was the first game against a real competitor when Iowa accelerated in the second half.

However, Phil Parker is probably a better DC than Norm Parker in his later years.  Iowa is 11th in the country in overall D, has given up four rushing TDs all year.  Jordan Lynch ran for 56.   MSU had to throw to win, and the game turned into Cook's coming out party.  The DLine has vastly outperformed expectations; I would predict some NFL looks for two of them, Ott (S) and Davis (atypically large for Iowa at 6'5, 315; J) both underclassmen.  All three linebackers will be in an NFL camp.

The offense still lacks an identity1.9 seasons into Greg Davis' tenure: very weird.  The wideouts cannot separate.  The best vision and cutting in the zone scheme is offered by a the smallest back who has been third string all year; he is 25-223 in the last two games.  Weisman appears to be hurt and his productivity has plummeted since MSU.  The O pluses are the O-Line as unit, five tightends, at least three of whom will play in the NFL, a QB who is maturing rapidly and has brains (pre-med; wants to be a pediatric cardiologist), and a LT who will probably come out early and is extremely athletic (played QB, small forward, pitcher and tennis) in high school.  There is a JC transfer who can stretch and runs a 4.3x, but he doesn't get the ball much at all, and though he averaged 30 yards a catch last year it was a lot of tunnel screen stuff that the staff thinks will get him killed in this league (he's about 165).  

Iowa's lost a lot of games, but their opponents cumulative record is 37-4.  Vrabel said Iowa "kicked our asses" in the first half against OSU.  Iowa had the ball, a first down, and was down by five with seven minutes against Wiscy.  Second half adjustments until Purdue: Iowa's staff have been outcoached, I think, most of the year.  The apocalyptic special teams lapses continue, though Ferentz brought in a new guy from Vikings to coach that unit.

I would suggest this will be a close game and UM needs to exploit its matchups wide against safeties who are a step slow and a true frosh at corner.  Probably put Lowery (senior CB) on his own for much of the game.   Iowa made Cook throw to beat them, and he did.  That would seem to be the charge for UM and Gardner.

11/07/2011 - 11:23pm Curious.

When was the last time that a single-wing tailback was a championship QB in the Big Ten?  To get there, we have to go farther back than Rex Kern, and that's a ways.  Why is this odd experiement even being implemented?

He's not a game manager, and he's not a slinging cowboy.  He's a single-wing tailback, or maybe a slot with questionable hands; he's shown very modest QBing skills.  12 INTs after only 5 Big Ten games is not an argument for Robinson.

 

11/07/2011 - 10:56pm Great.

We're already complaining about *next year's* opponents getting an unfair break.

11/04/2011 - 11:12pm Of course, the only time I'm casual is in St. Barthes.

Hey, thanks.  Great gloss on the subject.  The casual fan obviously is tripped up by the fact that there are two safeties.  I'm sure your scouting report is not casual, however.

Good luck tomorrow.  If they make Denard throw the ball, one of you geniuses needs to explain why.

11/03/2011 - 12:01am suggestions for IC

I was born and raised there.  My suggestions are:

a.  come into town around 7:30 or so and park at the garage at Clinton and Burlington

b.  have breakfast at Joe's Bar on Iowa Ave between Clinton and Dubuque

c.  pick up a few Iowa sweatshirts and caps at Iowa Book and Supply, Iowa and Clinton (kidding)

d. Prairie Lights, Dubuque betw Iowa and Washington, remains a top-10 independent bookstore, if you are a literary sort

e.  Pagliai's Pizza, Bloomington betw Gilbert and Linn, after the game will be mobbed; it is my favorite pizza, and I lived in NYC.

f.  A quiet place to unwind with Writer's Workshop types is Dave's, NE corner of Market St. and Gilbert

Anyone maintaining even a minimum of decorum will have zero problem in a Michigan cap.

I avoid the student bars, so can't comment on what they are like, but the townie bars always have people from the out-of-town school and in my experience, they're treated well -- like anyone else.  Iowa City is probably the inverse of Columbus, OH, a place I'm unlikely to return to on a football Saturday.  

11/02/2011 - 11:30pm That certainly settles it.

Oddly, I have heard of BHGP.  See paragraph (2):

http://www.blackheartgoldpants.com/2011/10/26/2516628/its-happening-rig…

 

11/02/2011 - 11:24pm Quarters.

It's fine if you wish to discard my comment -- but Matt Bowen would like a word with you:

"... Michigan State is in their Posse (311) personnel (3 WR, 1 TE, 1 RB) vs. Iowa’s base 4-3 Under front playing Cover 4 in the secondary."

http://www.nationalfootballpost.com/Breaking-down-Tyler-Sashs-INT-vs-Mi…

And it's fine if you still wish to discard my comment, but New York Giants' safeties coach Dave Merritt would like a word with you:

"And wrapping up Merritt's safety talk, the coach said he's looking to see rookie S Tyler Sash react to plays from the "post" (deep middle safety) position. Merritt said Sash played mostly "quarters" (Cover-4) in college at Iowa and must now learn to react to the quarterback in Cover-1. As the only player deep, he must get a quick read on the play to provide better coverage support.

http://www.nj.com/giants/index.ssf/2011/08/giants_safeties_coach_david_…

I don't understand the comment, below, i.e., that the differences between cover-2 and cover-4 comprise distinctions without a difference -- and Chris Brown would like a word with you:

http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/7124536/how-troy-polamalu-ed-reed-c…

So on balance, while I'm sure that someone on BHGP said that Iowa runs Cover-2 as their base D, and that is surely a definitive citation, it certainly is ironic that the Giants, Bowen and Brown don't know what they are talking about.  

It will be great if Michigan assumes a cover-2 base D from Iowa, as does the scout here who references BHGP as his source.  I don't think they will, however.  It's a very different defense.

 

 

11/02/2011 - 2:37pm I have no idea who

I have no idea who "recruiting ninja" is, but I don't think he's a scout for the Bears.  Iowa's base D is a cover 4, 4-3 under.  Thank you for citing your source, it's very helpful.

11/02/2011 - 2:16pm Base D

Iowa's base D is quarters/cover 4.  A good tipoff is who forces run.  In cover 2 it's the corner; in quarters it's a safety.  

Just because there are two safeties in the middle of the field doesn't exactly mean it's cover 2.