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Date Title Body
09/23/2018 - 2:40pm Creative? Did you not watch…

Creative? Did you not watch the game. We attacked them on the ground with RB and FB. We hit open WRs and TEs. Special teams, etc. Sure, the O-Line (and team) still needs to prove themselves against top competition. However, after yesterday, it's pretty clear this team has weapons. Higdon, Mason, Shea, DPJ, Gentry, McKeon...and others like Nico, Evans Wilson, as well Ambry, Bell and some of the back ups RBs.

If the o-line keeps improving. Watch out. We have weapons.

09/23/2018 - 12:04pm We have weapons and the game…

We have weapons and the game plan showed it. If the O-Line continues to gel and grow, watch out. We have a QB (two in fact), Higdon is a very good back (and we have depth at the position), Mason is legit (he's going to see more carries as the season goes on), Gentry and McKeon at TE, and the WRs are growing up quickly. Add in Ambry and even Ronnie Bell...this could be a very scary offense by the time we get to the Wisconsin, MSU, PSU stretch.

Offensively, I thought the Nebraska game plan and play calling should be the starting point moving forward. I think some of the early game plans (ie: ND), were designed that way because the o-line needed more time to play in games. We are very close to it all coming together.

Again, the O-Line needs to continue to show improvement, but I think they do it. Still dont know how we will fare against OSU, but I could see this year's game be an all-time classic.

09/23/2018 - 11:55am Yes. Things seem to be…

Yes. Things seem to be clicking for DPJ. To be honest though, it seems some of the criticism thrown his way, lighted a bit of a fire under him. To my eye, he's playing more freely. Now that could just be things "clicked" or he could have just said "fuck it..im going out to ball." (Or even a combo of both). Whatever it is, he looks more comfortable and confident out there.

(Still think his first step is nothing "GREAT," but once he hits top speed, he's off to the races).

09/22/2018 - 1:30pm I believe he was referring…

I believe he was referring to "against ranked teams."

09/22/2018 - 1:29pm Is Warinner calling the…

Is Warinner calling the plays? At the timeout, team came over and Ed was carrying the play sheet.

09/21/2018 - 11:38am The season "begins" tomorrow…

The season "begins" tomorrow. It's a crucial game for so many reasons, but playing "WELL" and getting a "W" could create a collective belief, for both the players and fans, that propels this team to big things. (especially if Martinez plays the whole game). This seems like one of those games that teams and media speak about later in the season...the one where things "turned or clicked." That's how I see it in the big picture. Yes, the stretch of Wisconsin, MSU, PSU will be brutal and the hump that this team needs to jump (as well as OSU), but it starts tomorrow. 

We also need Shea to have a "Baker Mayfield" type of game like last night. One where Harbaugh opens it up to get the offense rolling so the players and fans "BELIEVE."

09/19/2018 - 11:03am Yeah, sociopathic tendencies…

Yeah, sociopathic tendencies for sure. 

09/18/2018 - 6:07pm It would be great if he did,…

It would be great if he did, but then again, I am bullish on DCaf. So, I think we will be fine at QB next year.

I'd rather see Bush or Gary stay another year. Not going to happen, but one can dream.

09/16/2018 - 7:26pm Didn't a few people do this…

Didn't a few people do this after MGoBlog switched to the new format?

09/13/2018 - 4:19pm Nice little insight to crew…

Nice little insight to crew. I had a buddy who rowed at Brown and won pretty much everything you can at that level. However, since I know nothing about crew except the name of a couple of the big races, my buddy trained very early in the morning, and that Rob Lowe film from the 80s, it's cool to get a little insight into the mind of it's competitors. I need to ask my buddy about it. Don't know why it never crossed my mind before.

09/13/2018 - 1:52pm I played both D1 and D3…

I played both D1 and D3 hoops in college. Although, I played for a low level D1 school with a shitty coach, the days were crammed. In preseason, we had to run football stadium sprints 3 days a week at 6AM (often hungover) and then had to find time twice a week during the day to run timed 2 miles on the track. Add in, weight training 3 nights a week, pick up games with the team, working on your own game, ACADEMICS, and having some sort of social life (especially as a frosh)...and you have almost NO time for yourself. If you do have time, you aren't working hard enough.

At a place like Michigan, that work load is MUCH greater and MUCH MORE intense. They are clearly working two jobs right now (college student and semi pro athlete). Moreover, they are at a top academic institution, as well as a top D1 football program. So, not only do they have the academic rigors of a school like Michigan, but I suspect playing football there, or any other major D1 program, is like having a second job at a top investment bank or law firm. Additionally, they are still kids finding out who they are as football players and as people. Just look at how much you probably grew as a person in your first two years of college. I'll say this..I went to a very good academic college and had great grades from a top academic high school. D1 sports and performing well academically is TOUGH no matter what level you are playing at.....and you have to be 100% dedicated to excel at BOTH. It's even harder if you want a social life. So, I have a ton of respect for these kids. Their dedication, work ethic, etc. It's impressive as hell. And, I would bet on the fact that as much as Harbaugh runs his program like a pro team, he also probably expects his players to be more than just athletes and students. So, guys like Chase and Evans who use their free time to do community work, or Higdon who is a DAD, have even crazier schedules. It's why I really like someone like Higdon. That guy is a dedicated grinder. Student, semi-pro athlete, and father..at MICHIGAN of all places. He's not really at college. He's working full time.

09/12/2018 - 6:57pm I think it's important to…

I think it's important to state that the amount of responsibility put on DPJ as a true frosh (#1WR and PR) was a lot for any 5 star WR (heck..any receiver in D1 football). Not to mention the poor QB and o-line play last year he had to play with last year. So, while he "might" not be the freak 5 star that comes with such lofty expectations, he is having a pretty big impact so far...and his trajectory is on the up.

However, I will fully admit that he hasn't YET lived up to that 5-star ranking. And, I am not sure he ever will. I think he will end up being an All-American and will play in the NFL, but not the dominant force we expect him to be. He just doesn't seem like a natural born football player to me. He's supposedly very bright, so it wouldn't surprise me if he overthinks things on the field, as opposed to just balling out in games.

Yeah, these are hot takes and the only support I use to make these conclusions is my own eye test as a former D1 athlete. However, since day 1, he doesn't seem to look comfortable on the field to me. Maybe its a lack of confidence? Or longer adjustment to the D1 speed? Info overload? etc etc etc ..I mean...5-Star guys don't have issues catching punts if they are a returner. It doesn't seem to come natural to him.

I will end with this though. He is fast once he hits top speed, but I don't think he has a great first step or explosion. (Again...eye test) And I "think" that lack of a  5-star first step/explosion is what's not making me say "5-Star." But, I think he will mature into a VERY good receiver and route runner. He will move the chains and be our possession receiver. If the staff can get him the ball with more open space to attack, he will do even better.

Hopefully, I am wrong and something clicks during the season... he makes that HUGE jump by end of season and dominates games. When you have the skill set like he does, once the "mental aspect" is second nature, then you explode. So, hopefully it's just some more maturity and experience. 

09/12/2018 - 5:24pm I am not sure if it would…

I am not sure if it would hysterical if MK was actually Shea and he was trolling the board or frightening that our QB is spending so much time here.

09/11/2018 - 3:13pm re: the offense

Did anyone…

re: the offense

Did anyone happen to watch the Rams vs Raiders last night? Seemed like both offenses were similar to what Harbaugh wants to run. Obviously, west coast style, but the Rams open it up more. (Especially with the jet sweeps). Both had solid ground games too and receivers on long routes (and Goff had all the time in the world most of the game) They looked good last night, but I'm not sure we can execute it like that in CFB. A lot of nuance to the offenses and with professionals executing. Not saying it won't work in AA, but concerned that without the proper players (ie: o-line), we will struggle. Hope I am wrong, but if we start clicking, it's a nice offense to watch when firing on all cylinders.

09/10/2018 - 4:16pm Granted, there was a huge…

Granted, there was a huge delay and terrible weather, but SMU gave TCU some fits in the first half. It was 14-12 at half. Now, should be beat them? Yes, easily. I am more worried about Nebraska if Martinez is back by then. While their D doesn't look great, I don't want to get into a shootout. 

09/09/2018 - 6:17pm What!?!? An ad for an all…

What!?!? An ad for an all gay cruise, you say? Your kids are definitely going to love sucking dick now.

(SMDH)

09/08/2018 - 6:54pm Improvements were there!…

Improvements were there! Shea (Sheet) and Dylan both looked good, again. If the o-line improves week in and out, this will be a team that grows stronger as the season goes on.

09/05/2018 - 11:24am I like that sweatshirt and…

I like that sweatshirt and color. Midnight navy is sharp.

09/05/2018 - 11:10am Harbaugh needs to ditch the…

Harbaugh needs to ditch the khakis too. Our performances over the last few years are as bland as tan pants.

09/04/2018 - 5:33pm They lost a huge talent in…

They lost a huge talent in Chaisson, but that D is good with Aranda. No glaring weaknesses overall, but if the offense continues to grow, and Burrows can manage games like he did against Miami, they will be a tough opponent. They can run, pass, and play D. They also play hard, tough and fast. Heck, even their D2 kicker looked good.

And I hate to admit this, but they reminded me of a Michigan team from the 80s/early 90s.

09/04/2018 - 3:33pm And Washington is above an…

And Washington is above an LSU team that smacked around #8 Miami. Yeah they jumped up from the 25th ranking, but that was an impressive display with a new QB. It's not like Washington are 'Bama with years of domination and suffered a lost in a tough opening game.  Also, they are ahead of Stanford after a loss. That would be like Wisconsin lost and was still ahead of MSU or PSU.

09/04/2018 - 3:25pm Call me an optimist, but I…

Call me an optimist, but I think the early loss is a big dose of humility for this team....And that's a good thing! I saw enough positives on Saturday to think they are turning the corner. I'd rather lose to ND than a Big Ten foe midway thru the season and then they have to deal with that humility in the middle of a brutal schedule. Obviously if we have to lose again, I want it to be Wisconsin, but I think we beat them and PSU at home. Plus the Wisconsin game will be our next MAJOR test. So, we will be focused to prove ourselves. Also, we get revenge on MSU..their luck over the past few years has to finally come to an end. OSU is a toss up. (the combo of talent, on the road, and refs make it impossible to predict)

09/04/2018 - 12:32pm Agree. I thought JH would…

Agree. I thought JH would bring discipline and smart play to Michigan. It's head scratching. Who knows what's really behind it, but part of me thinks he is trying to coach college kids like they are professionals. It just won't work at this level. Their games and mental approach aren't there yet. Not to mention they are student athletes who can't arrive at 6AM and stay at the football facilities all day and night.

It's like the school teacher who is ambitious with their syllabus for the year, but realize the kids don't have the skills and knowledge yet to do it all.

09/04/2018 - 12:21pm I'll also add...two comments…

I'll also add...two comments from players in the last week lead me to believe there could be some discipline issues at hand.

1. Chase's comments about the captaincy. He said to the press that it was a "popularity contest." I am sure that pissed off the captains and players who voted for them. That's an insult to your teammates. I can guarantee you there were some eye rolls and talk in the "dorm rooms" about that. They are kids after all.

2. Gary commenting on Edwards tweet. Rashan, didn't say anything bad and was standing up for his brothers, but there's no need to comment - even if asked. Harbaugh should make it known to players that "external noise" is not to be addressed. It doesn't do anything to help the team. Sure, it's a minor thing taken out of context, but these are "red flags" that point to discipline issues. Maybe, Gary was asked about it before Harbaugh could address it, but he should know better. There's nothing to gain from it.

09/04/2018 - 12:09pm I hate to be "that guy," but…

I hate to be "that guy," but this has been discussed at great lengths in other threads. Personally, it's not as bad as some think. Yes, the o-line has issues, but we handed that game to them in the first quarter. The offense put together some decent drives, until they shot themselves in the foot. Moreover, the passing game was more effective than any time last season. (More completions and yards in a game than any game last year).

The troubling area to me is that Michigan teams under Harbaugh keep making mental errors that lose us games. Why is that and how is it remedied? Is it not coaching enough discipline and fundamentals? Are the players playing tentatively (especially on O) because they are afraid to make mistakes and are under too much pressure? Are the schemes too complicated? Whatever it is, it needs to be fixed.

What's clear to me is that Harbaugh's teams don't know how to win yet. (And I'm not sure the staff does either). We can debate offensive game planning till we are blue in the face, but until players make plays, stop the mental mistakes, and play with more discipline, they won't take the next step. However, I saw enough positives from the ND game to think we are heading in the right direction after last year. But again, it's primarily the mental mistakes that are losing us games. The staff needs to find a way to correct that because whatever Harbaugh is doing, it's not working on that front.

09/04/2018 - 10:58am Isn't Jedd "Senior Offensive…

Isn't Jedd "Senior Offensive Analyst" for the Rams and not OC? Or was there a change over the summer?

09/04/2018 - 8:21am I screamed out multiple…

I screamed out multiple times in the game...."Will you just run a draw!"

09/03/2018 - 3:07pm I think we clearly beat them…

I think we clearly beat them if we didn't have so many mental errors. We bailed ND out on their first two scoring drives and gave them the momentum. We also shot ourselves in the foot a few times offensively. Yes, their D was effective, but we win that game without the stupid mistakes and penalties. This team needs to "learn" how to win.

And don't get me started on how lucky Winbush was...yeah he ran well, but almost every pass of his was a prayer or poorly thrown. If I am a ND fan, I am more concerned about their QB play than ours.

09/03/2018 - 2:41pm I mentioned this last week…

I mentioned this last week in a post about the captains, but I am sure Chase's outgoing personality, off field attention, and hair might rub some people the wrong way and not want him as a Captain. Chase comes across as super confident guy, but sometimes confidence is misconstrued as arrogance. Not saying that is the case, but i wouldn't be surprised if it was. 

Also, Chase seems to be quite frank to the press. I could also see him being that way with his peers. Just the fact that he said the other day "it was a personality contest" isn't the smartest thing to say (i was actually shocked he said that). I am sure more than a few of those captains (and other teammates) took that as an insult. I would have, if I was just voted a captain by the TEAM. 

09/03/2018 - 2:32pm Agree. Teams that fail on…

Agree. Teams that fail on the little things ALWAYS boils down to coaching problems. It's like the basketball team that never blocks out or doesn't hedge out properly on D. Only thing I can think of is that JH is trying to coach these kids like professionals when they are not. Either fundamentals, or discipline, are not being emphasized enough. The system he is trying to run  requires close to perfect execution to succeed. It works for the NFL because those guys are professionals who work on their game all day long (and are elite talents). If they don't execute, they are cut, traded, etc. Can't do that in CFB obviously.

 

09/03/2018 - 1:30pm Was that Harbaugh or Drevno?…

Was that Harbaugh or Drevno? Yeah, JH is the head coach and makes the final call, but maybe he believed in Drevno's take on Ulizio?

09/03/2018 - 12:42pm I took a huge sheet this…

I took a huge sheet this morning.

09/03/2018 - 11:27am Guy is a playmaker and we…

Guy is a playmaker and we need to get the ball in his hands. After another horrible punt return decision by DPJ, I would like to see Ambry returning punts. Both he and Nico look the most explosive playmakers on the team.

09/03/2018 - 10:37am Also, what is crazy fromt he…

Also, what is crazy from the game is that Wimbush was 6-9 passing with an INT. Out of those 6 completions, two should have been picks. Guy was extremely lucky to not have thrown 3 INTs. Yeah, he tore us up with his legs, but some bad luck and not finishing, bailed that guy out.

09/03/2018 - 9:54am It was so refreshing when…

It was so refreshing when Dylan, in one of his first plays, held on and ran around the edge for a gain of 3-4 yards. Shea had that run open a few times and gave it up.

09/03/2018 - 9:03am When I read this post, I…

When I read this post, I assumed the post meant:

OSU gave LSU a smart QB who can manage the game and make some plays. The way LSU played last night, they could make the playoffs (yes I know its early) because they have a decent QB to go with a solid ground game, good O-Line, athletes all over the place, and a very good defense. That could come back to bite OSU in a playoff scenario. 

09/03/2018 - 8:58am Since I had to watch the…

Since I had to watch the game with a group of ND fans, I decided to take another look last night....and it still amazes me how many mental errors they made. For all the problems we had Saturday night, we should have won that game. The penalties and bonehead plays in the first half were unreal. (Although, its become a hallmark of Harbaugh's Michigan teams to keep making mental errors). However,  it's worth noting that the offense at least moved the ball on a few drives that ate some clock. Not great by any means, but a marked improvement. Shea had 20 completions and Dylan 4 for 250 yards passing. The only game last year where we had 20 completions was Peters against S. Carolina (20 of 44 for 186 yards). Most games, we had under 15 completions and under 200 yards passing (under 150 yards a lot). So our QB play has improved, and it appears, so have the WRs (Nico looks good).

So the house isn't quite on fire at the moment. Yes, there are STILL o-line issues and the play calling is questionable, but this "might" have been a case of an offense with a lot of new starters getting used to each other under the lights and on the road in South Bend in the season opener. I'm glad we had this early road test. It's a wake up call for sure, but IF they clean up the mental errors and the O-Line can improve with more time....we can compete against the likes of MSU, PSU, Wisconsin and OSU. Now, we've been saying that a lot the last few years, but it seemed different on Sat night. They reminded me of Harbaugh's first year around mid season before Rudock went on a tear. There are some signs this "could" turn around. But they need to make the mental leap...maybe its confidence, coaching, etc...but, we could have won that game. Now, they must show that they can. These kids don't know how to win yet. (The coaching staff might not either).

09/03/2018 - 8:54am Since I had to watch the…

Since I had to watch the game with a group of ND fans, I decided to take another look last night....and it still amazes me how many mental errors they made. For all the problems we had Saturday night, we should have won that game. The penalties and bonehead plays in the first half were unreal. (Although, its become a hallmark of Harbaugh's Michigan teams to keep making mental errors). However,  it's worth noting that the offense at least moved the ball on a few drives that ate some clock. Not great by any means, but a marked improvement. Shea had 20 completions and Dylan 4 for 250 yards passing. The only game last year where we had 20 completions was Peters against S. Carolina (20 of 44 for 186 yards). Most games, we had under 15 completions and under 200 yards passing (under 150 yards a lot). So our QB play has improved, and it appears, so have the WRs (Nico looks good).

So the house isn't quite on fire at the moment. Yes, there are STILL o-line issues and the play calling is questionable, but this "might" have been a case of an offense with a lot of new starters getting used to each other under the lights and on the road in South Bend in the season opener. I'm glad we had this early road test. It's a wake up call for sure, but IF they clean up the mental errors and the O-Line can improve with more time....we can compete against the likes of MSU, PSU, Wisconsin and OSU. Now, we've been saying that a lot the last few years, but it seemed different on Sat night. They reminded me of Harbaugh's first year around mid season before Rudock went on a tear. There are some signs this "could" turn around. But they need to make the mental leap...maybe its confidence, coaching, etc...but, we could have won that game. Now, they must show that they can. These kids don't know how to win yet. (The coaching staff might not either).

09/02/2018 - 9:10pm LSU looks goooood. A little…

LSU looks goooood. A little sloppy early, but that D. 

09/02/2018 - 5:09pm We played bad, however, some…

We played bad, however, some thoughts.

1. Again....a Harbaugh team making mental error after mental error. How many penalties did we commit on third down? 4-5? DPJ catching a punt on the 2 yard line with under a minute to play in the half? Two missed INTS?, etc. Teams that make errors like this, lack DISCIPLINE. Its been a hallmark of this team since Harbaugh took over. I did not expect lack of discipline when we hired him. This is what I was talking about the other day..the little things separate the good and best teams. We don't do the little things! Usually a sign of bad coaching. I said this last year, but I get the sense that Harbaugh is trying to coach like he is in the NFL. They are still kids! They need discipline and fundamentals.

2. Shea looks good. I liked his moxie...he wants to win. Dylan also looks good. I was impressed with his poise in his first game under the lights at ND. Did not look like a red shirt frosh in his first game. Might be the most positive takeaway from the game. If Shea gets injured, I am comfortable with Dylan behind center.

3. More on discipline. Gary and Chase seem to be in a head to head competition of who can get to the QB first and in doing so, leave the middle of the defense vulnerable. We did this last year as well at times.

4. Still no identity on offense. Play calling seems like they are trying to eat as much clock as possible but without attacking. Yeah, I know the line is a mess, but we call games like "let's not mess up." We have had zero creativity on offense since Jedd left (was he our Moeller?)

5. He's supposed to be a freak physically, but DPJ doesn't look like he knows how to use it (yet?). Also, seems to have a relatively slow first step and lacks confidence (especially on punts....still...Ambry please). Whatever the case may be, he isn't showing 5 star ability. In limited time, both last season and against ND, both Tarik (last year) and Ambry look the better players. Time will tell, but I just don't see the 5-Star billing.

6. Obviously, the line needs to step up, but the season isn't over. Hopefully, that was our mulligan. Although, if the line and play calling don't improve, as well as more discipline, it's going to be a frustrating year.

08/28/2018 - 8:58pm It's why I brought it up…

It's why I brought it up this morning in a thread. If we lose in South Bend, I'd place a bet saying it's because of special teams. They could hold us back as much this year as the offense did last year.

08/28/2018 - 7:32pm I am sure Chase is a well…

I am sure Chase is a well liked teammate, but we don't know the internal dynamics of the locker room. I imagine its combo of things..like the "popularity contest," but also wouldn't surprise me if certain guys think Chase's happy go lucky attitude isn't right for captaincy, as well as the fact that he gets a ton of attention (his play, his do good stuff off the field, his hair, etc)..that can turn some guys off. As he said, "he wasn't captain before and isn't now. Things won't change."

 

08/28/2018 - 7:25pm I just wish we were wearing…

I just wish we were wearing black cleats with white socks like we used to and how 'Bama does now.

08/28/2018 - 7:22pm Is that confirmed? I know…

Is that confirmed? I know its a green out in the stands, but I thought the man in purple said he prefers the home blues.

08/28/2018 - 6:36pm I'm more concerned about…

I'm more concerned about what ND might wear. Their alternate uniforms with UA are atrocious. Not sure I can watch a whole game if I have to see something like that Yankee inspired uniform coming this year.

08/28/2018 - 6:31pm He can condition, just not…

He can condition, just not run. He will be in the weight room with limited exercises. Also, to get some cardio, they will likely get him in the pool initially with a boot on. He can do things like, pretending he's sprinting in the deep end of the water as he keeps himself afloat. When its time for the boot to come off, they will probably then have him do laps and sprints in the pool (if he can swim), as well as stationary bike, before they are ready to take it to solid ground. Is it great? No, but it will keep his cardio/aerobic base relatively close to where it is. Its the explosion stuff, and his anaerobic base, that he will need to recover. That will only come when he's cleared to run full speed.

08/28/2018 - 4:22pm And then either a delayed…

And then either a delayed hand off or QB sneak up the middle because the D is too worried about all the weapons in the end zone.

08/28/2018 - 10:37am No, of course not and of…

No, of course not and of course we want wins. However, some of the things I want to see improved (again, outside of the obvious) lead to those victories. It's all in the details. If we can't kick FGs or punt, we keep points off the scoreboard and give teams field advantage every game. If we can't handle punts, same thing. That's not a recipe for success. Also, if we don't clean up the mental mistakes (penalties and missed assignments), we will shoot ourselves in the foot on drives.

This is all for naught if the OL can't pass protect and the receivers can't get open, but I think we will see notable improvement in both areas (not to mention the addition of Shea). Again, good teams play mistake free football and pay attention to the little things. Successful teams don't usually consistently win (or win the tough games) in only two phases of the game. How do good teams separate themselves from the other best teams? Play mistake free, limit turnovers, and have very good special teams. Just look at 'Bama. They had arguably the best punter in CFB the last couple years who consistently put their defense at an advantage by pinning the other team inside the 20. That's huge!

So I don't think its realistic to say we that if we make the improvements stated in the original post, then we will finish 8-5 (despite the difficult schedule).  Obviously, seeing a fiery Harbaugh isn't going to make or break this team.

08/28/2018 - 10:08am No, but if we play sloppy…

No, but if we play sloppy against our schedule, that won't be the case.

08/28/2018 - 9:58am Agree. For all DJ's hype and…

Agree. For all DPJ's hype and physical skills, he didn't seem to have a natural tendency to win 50/50 balls. (yes he was a freshmen, i get it). He will get better with experience, but I was concerned with his lack of aggressiveness in going for balls. Maybe it was due to the fact that he was overthinking his routes (and obviously, bad QB play), but I got the impression that he wasn't confident in his own abilities as a player (see also catching punts). If he makes the improvements we all suspect he will make and gets confident, watch out.