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04/16/2014 - 9:31pm If it's someone who would fill a gap we have

and is immediately eligible, yes.  He averaged 18 pts and 6 rbs a game last year.  He'd be a great one year pickup while we try to land a top notch guard or two for 2015

06/15/2013 - 3:19pm The problem with 2014 is

that we only have one spot open right now, having probably pulled the trigger a little early on Doyle. We may have anywhere from 1-4 guys leaving early after the end of 2013-14, but we likely won't know who or how many until well after signing day, and it's uncertain which if any of the guys we have a chance at will still be uncommitted by that late date.

06/08/2013 - 7:28am Almost certainly

Especially if he adds some weight and come out around 225-230. I wouldn't be surprised if Speight ends up as a low 4 star as well.

06/08/2013 - 7:25am You know better than that

Guys with elite offer lists tend to pan out more often than those who don't. Compare the number of 5 stars who end up as all- American to the number of walk-ons who do, and you'll see how unfounded your argument is.

And the fact that someone bombed here at Michigan doesn't necessarily mean that they weren't worth an offer from other elite teams.

06/08/2013 - 7:21am The truth is

that there is no way to tell how accurate rankings REALLY are right now. At the moment, it's all just hype. No one will know how good these classes really are and how they stack up against one another for at least 3 years.

06/02/2013 - 3:26pm Doubt we'll take another LB

if the class stays at 15. We've had good hauls at that position, and our losses after this season are minimal. I think a third OL would be more likely and necessary. Hopefully we'll eventually get up to 18 or so, and be able to squeeze in a RB and another DL, if by some good chance both McDowell and Hand want to join.

05/29/2013 - 8:06am With 5 more spots

I would look for 1 OL, 1 LB, 1 DB, 1 DL and 1 RB. If we could land both Hand and McDowell, then we could probably do without the RB. it's not a critical need this year, but you like to take at least one in every class if at all possible. If we get up to 17 or 18, then a RB should definitely be in the mix.

05/23/2013 - 6:06am But the truth is

that we can't expect our run blocking to be any better than last year, at least not to start. Our tackles are the same, and we lost three seniors on the interior and their replacements will likely have little to no game experience. Add to that the fact that opposing run defenses no longer have Denard to worry about. Whether 2012 or 2011 is the real Fitz remains to be seen, but if he needs a better Oline to succeed, we really can't count on that this year. Hopefully our line will improve as the season goes on, but there will certainly be growing pains.

05/15/2013 - 1:24pm Trouble with 2014 is

that we only have one more spot available right now, so we'll have to choose carefully. We jumped the gun a little on Doyle, IMO..not that he's got no promise, but he really wasn't going anywhere, and there was no good reason to pull him in so soon, when we had so many better options still pending.

04/27/2013 - 6:18pm Yes, that's exactly the case

The draft really does highlight how low our talent level has been for the last 5 years, despite people's attempt to put a good face on it. Just as one measure of comparison, LSU had SIX defensive players drafted just in the first three rounds of this one draft.

Mattison and Co. have done a good job putting together a respectable defense with mediocre talent, but they've got three years of their own recruits now. It's time they started developing some star-caliber players and a championship-level defense out of all those highly touted recruits.

04/21/2013 - 9:50am I thought this meant

that his play put you to sleep. Sorry, but to do well at this position, in college or the NFL, you've got to have a high motor, and Campbell just doesn't have it. It's not something that just hits you after you graduate and you realize you've been lolly gagging all through college. You've either got it or you don't.

04/18/2013 - 6:52pm Come on..what does that even mean

Glenn Robinson will "move" to small forward? He'll play the same position he always has, which is Glenn Robinson. He may have two bigger guys on the floor with him more often (which is fine, since we'll have better depth there next year), but just because McGary or Morgan was the only big guy out there with him this year doesn't mean that he was playing "THE 4". Very few teams play much with a lineup that has one 1, one 2, one 3, one 4 and one 5 any more. Assuming that the freshmen do about as well as expected, Beilien will have plenty of flexibility to play a variety of lineups, but I wouldn't count on him going with two bigs more than half the time at the most.

04/18/2013 - 6:41pm The defense is very unproven

We have no star-caliber players back from last year. Lots of guys who COULD be very good, but no proven quality.

04/18/2013 - 6:27pm It'll be close

But I'd put football 10-15 and Bball 5-10.

04/14/2013 - 11:36am You have to hope

that Thomas will be good enough that we won't be able to redshirt him this year. With all of his hype, if he's worse than Robinson, Furman or Hollowell, even as a true frosh, that's not good. If he's beating out Avery at the nickel, that's good, but I'd rather have Thomas in the mix at safety, where we need more help.

04/14/2013 - 11:28am We've got a lot of bodies, no question

But that doesn't always translate to meaningful "depth". The Dline is the area where we most need quality player development, where the coaches need to show that they can turn quality recruits into top-notch on the field talent. Right now, despite the number of guys we have that COULD play and contribute, there isn't one that's shown talent above the journeyman level so far. At this point, no one can be reliably projected as all-conference or better this season.

04/14/2013 - 9:41am I wasn't arguing that any of those guys were superstars

And I'm certainly not arguing that we should START Morris unless we have to, but those guys weren't disasters either...they all had moments and games where they showed they could be productive. All I'm saying is that, if Morris is the second best QB on the roster, we should not hesitate to use him as the first backup should the situation or need arise, redshirt be damned.

Think of it this way...there is always a threshold of lead and time remaining that has to be reached before the coaches feel comfortable sitting the starting QB down. That threshold is always going to be reached sooner if you're bringing in your #2 guy (hopefully Morris) than if you're skipping over him and going right to #3 (probably Cleary), which means that if the coaches are dead set on guarding Morris' redhsirt, Gardner is always going to be playing deeper into games (not such a good idea). Also, if Gardner gets dinged during a game and has to sit out even one series, I don't want to put a far inferior QB in for even a short time. Too many games hinge on a single play, and too many seasons hinge on a single game, to screw around with any less than the best guys we can put in the field when the game is in doubt.

04/13/2013 - 4:30pm We have the problem

that there is just not enough talent at true 3-tech on this roster, at least not that's shown itself yet. Black simply does not have the size to be an effective 3-tech at the major college level, and ideally we'd keep him at SDE all the time, where he is better suited. Unfortunately, he may be one of the best couple of guys we have at DT.

04/13/2013 - 4:24pm If Morris isn't far and away

the second best QB on the roster this fall, then we bought a pig in a poke with him. And none of the "needs time to develop" excuses, please. We've had plenty of true freshmen QBs see significant playing time and even start in recent memory, including Henson, Henne, Mallett, Forcier and Robinson. If Morris is a five star talent, he should be more than good enough. You don't stash someone like that on the redshirt list behind the other guys we have. Odds are, Gardner will get nicked somewhere along the line, and we want the best possible backup to go in. The coaches shouldn't be beating themselves up trying to decide whether the situation warrants burning Morris' redshirt any time that happens, and they shouldn't have to play Gardner long enough in every game that even a walk-on couldn't mess it up by the time they sit him down. They need to just have him at number 2 and be done with it.

04/11/2013 - 8:46pm Agreed

He needs to bulk up, but if he gets stronger, he's got a lot to offer as a big guard. Good stroke from outside, and can create his own shot inside the paint. Hasn't shown great rebounding ability, but is a decent passer. Lots of potential there.

04/11/2013 - 7:22pm Not much talk about

who else Beilein could still pull in at this point (a la LeVert and Spike last year).  If only Burke and Hardaway leave, that puts us at 11 scholarships, which is low, but not critical, but any more and we start to look thin, especially with all three walk-ons probably heading out too.  In the worst case scenario where Robinson and McGary bolt too, we're down to 9...can't even practice game situations with that, and any injuries would be a big problem.

As far as Donnal, not sure I see him redshirting, even if McGary stays.  From the way they finished this year, neither Morgan or Horford (especially Horford) has a lot of minutes locked up next year, and they could be passed.  Donnal seems to be much more Beilein's type of player than Horford...a big guy who can step outside and shoot the three, and also give some play inside.  

04/11/2013 - 7:12pm I've been thinking that too

It doesn't show up on any stat sheet, but I've got to figure having so many seniors on scout team duty makes it a lots easier for the coaches during practices, especially with the overall youth of the team.  They may not be great talents, but they know the program, they know the drills, they know Beilein's system.  Substitute freshmen, and this team's game prep might not be as good.

03/29/2013 - 5:12pm It is a little frustrating

bordering on the humorous, the way he is non-committal about everything.  But the coaches have to walk a fine line during spring and fall practice, especially spring.  They want to send out postive vibes about the team and its prospects, but they don't want to create unreasonable expectations and they also don't want guys reading and hearing about how great they're doing, so that they think they've got the line on a starting job and don't need to keep working their asses off.

I watch for the rare cases when a coach singles a player out for praise...that tends to really mean something.  For everything else, I just get used to not really knowing much from what the coaches say publicly.

03/29/2013 - 7:09am Delete

On edit

03/24/2013 - 9:03pm Well, against top tier BT teams

We went 2-5, and the only two games we won were at home, by the skin of our teeth. We did not play one solid game against a team of Kansas' caliber all year.

If we're really hot shooting 3s, we might have a chance, but if not, we're pretty much done. We're going to get killed inside and on the boards. We've only got one big guy playing worth a damn right now, and he's erratic.

03/21/2013 - 8:02pm Horrible

They did pretty much everything better than us. If Hardaway wasn't hot on 3s we'd be losing to this damn team. It's just unbelievable that this is all Beilein can get out of them.

03/21/2013 - 7:41pm Figured they'd play like a top 10 team

With some talent. This whole "youth" excuse is getting really old. The freshmen have played a whole year, for pity's sake.

03/21/2013 - 7:39pm Sleepwalking?

They're playing great defense and we're took us 9 minutes before we even made a jump shot. Everyone knows how to stop our "offense" now.

03/21/2013 - 7:37pm Outcoached, outplayed

This team just can't do anything but struggle. As predicted, this will be a lame, single digit win, if we're lucky...and another 1-1 tournament run for Beilein.

03/16/2013 - 4:27pm Agreed

It's not as if they've been buried on a depth chart behind a lot of NFL-level talent at safety. If someone hasn't made an impact at safety by this point, they aren't likely to.

03/16/2013 - 4:24pm Other than Ryan

no one in your pass rush package has shown any ability to get to the QB at all, unfortunately. Black is simply too small to be an effective 3-tech at the major college level. He has some quickness, but has shown no effectiveness at beating Olinemen that outweigh him by 30 or 40 pounds. If he has any impact, it's more likely to be at SDE. Pipkins is totally unproven. I don't look for us to have a really effective pass rush until and unless guys like Strobel, Wormley, Henry, Godin, Hurst and Charlton develop.

03/16/2013 - 2:07pm Frankly, I'm going to wait

to see it on the field (and hope that we won't really need to). The coaches apparently thought enough of Bellomy last year to move Gardner to WR, and leave him as the only backup to a fragile Denard Robinson. That trust turned out to be sadly misplaced, as we all saw. If Shane Morris isn't good enough to see the field at all this year, with Bellomy our only other scholarship QB, that's not a good sign.

03/16/2013 - 1:42pm We may indeed be better

than we've been in past years, but as you note, that's not necessarily saying much, and we won't be competing against those teams in any case. I'm looking at where our secondary needs to be to compete at a championship level, and we still have a long way to go and a lot of talent to develop before we get there.

I don't see our two or three deep brimming with talent, frankly. Our starters will be solid as long as Countess is back healthy, but after that, numbers alone do not equate to "depth". Guys like Richardson, Stribling and Hollowell are simply unproven.

03/16/2013 - 10:14am Agreed

There's not nearly enough talent on the depth chart at safety to keep Thomas off the field, if he's anything close to being as good as advertised. Same for Smith. He's not a sure thing by any means, but it wouldn't take much to be better than Rawls, Hayes or Fitz were last year. I will not be surprised to see Smith play, and I think that Hayes will end up buried 6th on the depth chart and will leave the program. I don't see any future for him here.

03/16/2013 - 10:09am Face it, we're not exactly loaded

with top-notch talent back there. Gordon is the only guy on the roster who's ever done anything at safety, and he's certainly no star. If (and it's still a big IF) Countess comes back at corner and is improved over his freshman year, we'll be ok there, but he's the only one we have with even the potential to be a top level player. Taylor and Avery are decent, but nothing great, and no one else has proven talent at all. There's plenty to be worried about.

03/16/2013 - 10:03am If so, that's a little scary

Avery is too small and not physical enough to play safety. Nickel corner is his ideal spot, and there is really no one else on the roster to push him from the #1 spot there. We definitely have questions at safety, but Avery is not the answer. Robinson, Wilson and Furman have not given much reason for optimism so far that any of them are ready to step in as quality starters, and I'm not overly impressed with Gordon, either. Decent player, but not a big impact guy.

We get plenty of highly rated safety recruits, but for some reason, just can't seem to turn any of them into stars on the field.

03/16/2013 - 9:55am Not at Michigan they don't

Pretty much every running back we've had over the past 15-20 years that has been even marginally good has seen the field as a true freshman. How many Michigan RBs can you name that redshirted and then went on to ever gain even 500 yards in a season (i.e. been even a decent backup)?

The fact is that, unless they are injured or behind a boatload of talent on the depth chart, a RB who redshirts is probably not going to make much of an impact. Neither of those is the case with anyone on Michigan.

03/16/2013 - 9:45am There will be new excuses next year

the Beilein lovers have an endless supply. This year it's "we're too young...can't expect too much". Next year it will be "We lost Burke, and Walton will need time to develop..we'll be better next year". And so on...and so on.

03/16/2013 - 9:41am It's become abundantly clear

that John Beilein is not a March coach. His teams are not tough, they don't get hot when it matters, and they never, ever play over their heads and pull big upsets.

This team hit its ceiling in January, but after all of the other BT coaches figured Beilein out, he could do nothing to adapt. It's a little disconcerting that this year's team has pretty much ended up where last year's team did...struggling in every game to find somebody other than Burke to make things happen. We may get lucky and squeak out a first round win in the tourney, but the Sweet Sixteen is a pipe dream..not gonna happen. Sad to say, this team isn't going to do anything to excite anyone.

03/16/2013 - 9:31am Miles tougher?

Wisconsin, OSU and MSU all lost more talent that we did after last season and didn't bring as much in this year (allegedly). We should absolutely have had an advantage, but we didn't, because all of those coaches have better systems and develop tougher, better players that Beilein.

03/16/2013 - 9:26am No one is ignoring that they're freshmen

But as has been said, they just aren't that talented. And Beilein as a coach has not fostered any improvement in them over the course of the season, while other BT coaches HAVE done that with their teams.

03/15/2013 - 6:03am For a change it would be nice

to see this team come out and play really well right from the start. Not sure why that's so difficult, since our opponents seem to be doing it every time. Even in games we've won, we've been sloppy and lackadaisical, and there's no reason for that, not at this point in the season.

03/10/2013 - 9:38am That's all you have, eh?

I raised substantive issues that you know are a fact, but you'd rather just ignore them and fling poo. This team is not playing well right now. Their offense has regressed to everyone standing around waiting for Trey Burke to make things happen by himself. Their defense is weak, and is not going to win them any games in the tournament.

03/10/2013 - 9:33am Kansas lost to TCU

A month ago. Until yesterday, they hadn't lost since, and they've been winning by double digits. Georgetown lost to USF in mid January, and they're 12-1 since, with wins over ND, Marquette, Louisville and Syracuse (twice, the last one a beat down).

The point is, these teams are playing hot, and we aren't. Even when we win any more, we have to sweat and struggle and cross our fingers, even against mediocre opposition. We have no played a really strong game against a top notch team in a long time.

03/09/2013 - 9:49pm Because you win in the tournament with defense

And our defense is the worst by far of any team likely to be a top 4 seed. Add to that, our offense is one-dimensional now, and we have poor rebounding and inside scoring, and we're just plain not playing well.

03/09/2013 - 9:43pm He's got it nailed

We've played poorly the past month, and we have nobody but Burke to depend on in a tough, tight game, just like last year. Teams like Indiana or MSU have three or four weapons who can have a big game against a top 10 opponent. He got one thing wrong...we do not have the second best offense in the country...not remotely. That's only if you average out the stats for the whole year. Right now, at this moment, our offense is playing far worse than that, and as far as the BT and NCAA tournaments are concerned, right now is all that counts, How we played in December and January is meaningless.

03/09/2013 - 8:33pm News flash for you

Beilein's teams do not pull upsets...they do not play over their head and beat teams that are significantly better. They just don't.

03/09/2013 - 3:07pm A win we have no chance for

so what does it matter if we're one win or ten wins away? We do not have the talent and are not playing well enough to beat Indiana. Our team D is awful, and nobody on offense except Burke is on the top of their game.

03/09/2013 - 3:05pm And they kicked the crap out of Wisconsin

And us. Which is two better games than we've had all BT season. Izzo's team is tournament ready, as they always are. We are obviously not.

03/09/2013 - 3:00pm Yeah, well

Getting our asses kicked by PSU will do that to ya. But do you have anything substantive to say, or just snark?