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Date Title Body
10/13/2011 - 12:49am NW's defense just isn't good enough here

They have it pretty well defensed pre snap, but it's well blocked (by a good offensive line) and their LBs and secondary are too slow to diagnose the play.  The will backer for them did a poor job IMO.  If the guard pulls he should flow over the top playside; he took himself out of the play too early. 

But that's the sort of thing good scheming in college takes advantage of.  That's not Teo on the edge but some random 2 star most of the time -- they aren't going to make the play.

Nice breakdown, thanks.  Great block by Smith to give Denard an easy cut back.

09/02/2010 - 12:02pm Lots of depth, hopefully an Alpha will emerge

I'm curious to see if Shaw can be used effectively as a pass catcher and if Smith is as springy as we saw at times last year.  This looks like a solid group with plenty of depth.  I'm hopeing that one guy can really step up and be an elite back, but I don't think it's likely.

Smith could have been that guy but like Brian said the consensus on ACLs is year 2 is when the burst comes back.  That said, perhaps the young ligaments of Mr. Smith are laughing in the face of conventional wisdom, as well as him having an abunance of youthful "caution to wind" wrt to the mental barrier of coming back from a major injury.

With an experienced and solid OL unit and this group of backs there is plenty of reason for optimism that some ninja like knives will be produced. 

With this defense they're going to need it.

09/30/2009 - 3:55pm IMO, most important bit was Mike Wiliams is fully healthy.

Great news all around though. On a side note, I am having a horrible time getting through this work week, how is it only Wednesday...bring on Saturday!

09/29/2009 - 2:25pm come on

If you're a student at UM and you see another student on the football team walking by it's completely appropriate to ask him how his arm is.

That's the charm of college athletics. I'm sure 99% of the team wants it that way, and so do the students.

09/28/2009 - 1:04pm Yea true, quick google search confirms it

Well throw my theory out the window then!

09/28/2009 - 12:59pm Some thoughs on RS for the Secondary guys

It's interesting that Turner and Vlad not only aren't seeing any time in the secondary, but also that they haven't seen anytime on special teams either.

RS juniors and seniors are a key component of most elite level teams. Carr's maddening decisions to burn redshirts carelessly might be being taken to the opposite extreme by RR.

IMO that's the side to error on. Like RR said, he'll have to decide if those guys can contribute enough to make burn the RS, because he's got seniors he needs to be accountable to. On the other hand, if playing those guys can't result in any more wins, then they sure as hell better be redshirted.

Cissoko was apparently seen moping around the bench area after his benching. Well, I can't really blame him. Some are taking this to suggest an attitude problem. I'm taking it to suggest that he sucks, he knows it and so do the coaches. No reason to think he has serious mental problems at this point.

This team needs to get Mike Williams healthy ASAP. Kovacs is terrible slow, and although he may be a good tackler and have good instincts you can only hide 4.8 speed from a secondary guy for so long before it burns you. And we saw that.

As for JT, he did ok, certainly no worse than Cissoko. He too should not be playing but it is what it is.

My roomate and I both agreed that this defense is comprised of two or three NFL players and 8 or 9 guys that might not be starting any other good to average D1 defense. Guys like Kovacs, Floyd, Cissoko, Roh, Ezeh, Mouton, and Van Bergen just are either too young or too bad to count on for much.

I still think 9 wins is possible. It seems wierd, but this week's game with state might be the difference between struggling to get to 7 wins and winning 9 easily.

09/28/2009 - 11:35am or stuff you can find on google

Seriously, it sounds like he's getting ultrasound. I somehow doubt he has access to things anyone with good health insurance doesn't.

09/28/2009 - 11:17am Probably some sort of ultrasound

Send some ultrasound waves into the bone and it causes tiny distributions that stimulate the healing process.

That is my understanding anyway.

Sounds like Molk is well on the way to recovery. Hopefully he can be back by the Illinois game.

09/28/2009 - 10:10am Rosenberg, shouldn't he be taking today off?

Must have written this one before sundown last night.

09/25/2009 - 12:53pm football and the Internet were invented for hand wringing

1.) a week between games gives lots of time to talk;

2.) Internet makes talking among peers easy.

Sorry, it's only going to get worse man.

09/25/2009 - 12:34pm yea, that's exactly what I meant.

I hear Michael Steele is a great game manager though.

Seriously though, early reports on Gardner are more Vince Young than Troy Smith (or Tebow).

You shouldn't assume stereotypes from a couple of throwaway sentences.

09/25/2009 - 12:17pm Isn't Gardner more Vince Young than Tebow?

I have a hard time seeing Gardner being the awesome game manager that Tebow is. I also have a hard time seeing Tebow running wild like I envision Gardner doing.

That said, the future looks bright at QB.

09/24/2009 - 5:48pm Once you have DirectTV or Dish and see every UM hoops game in HD

You'll never now how you lived before. It's completely worth the money IMO.

HDTV + DirectTV is probably one the greatest decisions I've ever made as far as money spent on entertainment. Legal entertainment anyways.

09/24/2009 - 4:26pm couple options

find a michigan bar with directTV

get directtv installed by gametime.

Been with DirectTV for 2 years now, never going back to cable. You get all the big10 network games even if you're out of market for that matchup, i.e. you get all the overflow channels as well as the main channel.

09/24/2009 - 3:42pm RE: Shaw

I love Shaw's game, he's seemingly as fast as brown except with quite a bit more shiftiness once he reaches the 2nd level.

RB spot is in good hands for next year, although it remains to be seen if Cox can fill the hole left as the bruiser in short yardage.

09/23/2009 - 4:32pm Hey I'm loving this offense

It's ninja. But at some point we are going to be in a shootout and the D is going to have to get a stop for us to win the game.

This year is house money time, but future years D will need to step up.

09/23/2009 - 4:03pm yea agreed colin

by get benched I just mean for a series or two. Hopefully that would help to clear his head and make him realize he can't keep doing what he's doing and expect to be successful.

The cupboard is bare behind him and unfortunately he's the best of a bunch of bad options.

Additionally, I really don't think he's going to substantially improve his instincts at this point. We can only hope the coaches makes his keys as simple as possible so as to put him in a position of success.

that said, thank god UM is 3-0 because baseball is dead to me until the off season and trade/fa intrigue starts.

Might watch some of the playoffs, but not really that into it right now with FB season in full swing.

09/23/2009 - 3:24pm Ezeh is such a frustrating player

I've never seen a starting Michigan linebacker run into more blocks, fail to read and react, over run plays etc.

He seemingly has the physical talent of a 4 start recruit and the awareness of a HS underclassman. He just does not have any FB instinct. At MLB instinct is critical and Ezeh just does not have it. He seemingly runs into blocks time and time and time again. It's not like he's filling the hole either, he's taking on the block 2-3 yards upfield from the LOS, that cannot be by schematic design.

Now, it could be because he's playing in his 3rd different defense in 3 years and he's simply not up to speed with the schemes -- but I just don't buy that excuse entirely.

At some point he has to play better or be benched. He has potential, but the light just has not gone on mentally for him.

09/18/2009 - 5:47pm When will this joke of negativity around RR stop

I'm sick of it. It's like he also kicks puppies and pushes old ladies into puddles on his way to the big house on saturdays.

My god. This frankly wouldn't have happened before the level of obsession that the internet now allows fans. I'm sure a billion nd nation idiots sent the tape to the B10 and Weiss probably did to after getting emails about it.

You have all these people, who don't know shit about running a BCS contending football team, and in general have no idea how dirty of a game football can be pontificating from on high about how dirty RR is.

I'm mad as hell. I hope we wipe the floor with EMU and then do the same with all the rest of the schedule. I am taking a bunker mentality at this point.

09/18/2009 - 5:09pm What a joke

This is unreal. If you watch every game close enough there are at least 5-10 plays where guys are pushing and shoving (and yes, "punching" long after the whistle blows.

To single out this relatively benign action is beyond dumb.

This is an outrage IMO. The B10 has seriously over stepped its boundaries.

I frankly agree with Rich Rod -- there is no punch. I played football at a fairly high level in High School and this stuff happened multiple times

That's the nature of the game, I assume it's even worse in college.

Now, the real play that could have resulted in a serious life altering injury on that play was the block in the back, not the "punch"

I'll say it again: an outrage and a joke.

02/20/2009 - 12:21am Manny is pretty widely projected as a 2nd round pick

DX has him number 55, and that's with all the Euro's they project coming over.

He comes out this year he get a flier in training camp and a dog fight to make a roster.

He come out next year he perhaps gets a guaranteed contract.

Manny is a talented player, it's silly to pretend otherwise. He's by far UM's best player and yes, if he game out this year he's virually guaranteed a spot in an NBA training camp come next September. A roster spot is a different animal though, and for sure Manny would be well served to stay in school.

That said, I don't blame him one bit if he decides to try the league after this year.

10/11/2008 - 12:22am just give a shoutout to some A2 stuff

JENS FUCKING LEKMAN. SERIOUSLY. Like Sufjan for atheists.


There are some seminal bands I think in Indie Rock that you'd probably like at least some stuff:

Broken Social Scene

The Decemberists

Ted Leo and the Pharmicists

Architecture In Helsinki

The New Pornographers


Magnetic Fields

And I think that anyone should be required to listen to Kid A and then The Postal Service album. Both of those are about as influential as any albums in the past 20 years. I really can't stress enough hwo fucking awesome Electronica is. I love indie rock but the genres are blurred so much now that much of what I love the most is dance indie stuff (los campesinos, vampire weekend, css, phoenix) or electronica (erlend oye, schneider tm, m83)

Kings of Convenicne are fucking awesome too.


A2 bands:


Midwest Product

Mobius Band

Skeletons and the Git Faced Boys

All those bands are from A2. Ghostly out of A2 is a great label whose artists have been featured at SXSW and
also in a couple GM commerials. (one thing GM got right in
marketing the past decade)

And of course how can anyone sleep on the classic underground hip hop guys  Binary Star / One Man Army? That
first Binary Star album is classic and it came straight outta A2.




And finally: if you want to listen to what quite a bit of Indie-Rock (vampire weekend, ahem) is derivitive of check out afrobeat and afrofunk. Just gooole like "afrobeat best of torrent" and you'll get the picture. Just catchy as hell, even in languages I don't understand.

10/02/2008 - 5:29pm Richard's upside is as a 4th starter type

He's been passable this year, which is more than most Sox fans ever hoped for.  He's a LHP with a low 90's fastball so he'll have a place in the league as a long reliever/5th starter type for quite a while assuming he doesn't get injured and/or lose velocity.

09/30/2008 - 7:11pm Next thing you know someone will invent

a method where everyone can talk and share information via their tandy 2000 and it will like be sooooooooooooo cool.

09/30/2008 - 12:06pm There is nothing more annoying than watching guys wiff

on blocks during the kicking game.  If those guys going right across to block are wiffing they are just taking bad angles.  That's correctable, but it's also rather bizarre that it hasn't been fixed already.

The poor wedge being formed and easily blown up I guess could also be a function of just too many young underdeveloped guys trying to block the flying missiles coming at them.  If you're too light in the pants it doesn't matter how much technique you have when a guy is running full speed into you.

 Nne of the most infuriariing things to me is watching guys wiff on a kickoff block and then try and run and catch the guy the were supposed to block.  NO!  Turn around and block the fucking next guy.  Someone needs to scream that to Woolfork.

09/30/2008 - 10:03am What is the problem with the chip blocks?

This is like pretty basic stuff and it's something high school guards and centers learn how to execute the 2nd and 3rd week of summer practice.
It's got to just be bad reads and not knowing their assignment 100%. If they don't know their assignment 100% then it seems like you'll see the kind of mistakes you highlighted. And this is the inexperience factor.

 On that play where Odoms runs the seam route or cuts in, it seemed like the timing was way off, and it was open every time like you said. Either Odoms was running poor routes (which I suspect is the case) or Threet was just missing him.
That play that they almost hit to Minor: was he lined up in the slot there? Or was it a wheel route out of the backfield again? Seems like that wheel route play is open almost every time as well.

I really don't think the offense has as chance to be "very good" by the end of the year, just because I don't see the current O-line having enough bulk and experience to ever get a consistent push in the running game. We might see some big hitters like the Minor run, and the Mcguffie runs against ND, but as far as anything sustained I doubt it.

I do have hope though that as the season goes along Threet starts to hit his guys faster, those guys are running better routes, and that guys are sustaining blocks in the open field. This should result in quite a bit more success in the passing attack.

One thing that has surprised me is the amount of time they are giving Threet to throw. Great job all around on pass protection so far.

And the defense was awesome, as you noted. D Line was dominating and the linebackers and secondary were solid to great all game as well.

One thing you didn't touch on was the return game, which is time and time again putting Michigan up against it. This is not a team that can afford to misfire on special teams and expect to win many games. At this point I think it's time to ditch the freshman back there and let Minor and Trent take over full time.

09/29/2008 - 3:04pm I'm reminded of the equally pathetic

Valenti rant. "I did my part, I got a bunch of old asses out of there seats to cheer...I didn't dad...he only gets to one game a's at least the 3rd time he's had to see this shit..."

09/29/2008 - 1:46pm "should never happen"?

Seriously, listen to yourself: "should never happen"?  Dude, we are talking about kids here.  18-22 year old kids who are not getting paid jack squat who have been thrown into a crazy coaching change most of them had no part in (the non-freshman). 

I only hope that you don't judge your own family and friends by such strick standards.  If you do I'm pretty sure they all can't stand you, because you're a huge hypocrite and a giant dick to boot.

09/29/2008 - 1:41pm Captures my feelings as well

Boo Gary Sheffield.  Boo Jim Leyland or Todd Jones.  Boo Matt fucking Millen and Joey.  Boo whoever it is you boo in Detroit hocky.  Boo Flip. 

You don't boo college teams.

Don't boo 18-22 year old amateur athletes who bust their ass for countless hours off the field in addition to doing whatever they have to do in the classroom to stay eligible simply for our enjoyment as fans.

It's a sickening sense of entitlement that Brian and others have desribed if you think Michigan football owes you something beyond simply existing.  You chose to buy that ticket, nobody forced you to go to the game on Saturday.  If you think your purchase entitles you to relaying your satisfaction then you fucking seperate the kids on the field from the adminsitrators and coaches -- write a letter to the editor, write Bill Martin, organize a protest march, start a blog -- do whatever.  But don't boo these innocent kids who bust their ass all year long so we can get pleasure watching them.

09/28/2008 - 7:47pm Yea, clock management is important, obvs

no point out a clear example of where UM failed at it.

09/28/2008 - 4:57pm You are whining trying to score with 2:30 left in the half?

Seriously?  If they had ran the ball 3 times and punted you'd complain too.  If IRC Wisky had at least one TO left, so they could have gotten the ball back had UM not gotten a first down on those 3 runs.

Complain about clock management when it's a clear cut Bill Stewart fuckup, not in the situation above.

09/28/2008 - 2:46pm Yes they do

I've been avoiding SSS and all Chicago media.  It's funny, despite how comically bad they've been the past month they are still 1/2 game back and even in the loss column. 

 Minny is on the verge of being swept by KC and the Sox are on the verge of being swept by Cleveland -- what a race...

09/27/2008 - 10:41pm It's amazing how young this whole offense is

With so many freshman and sophomores being put into critical situations mistakes are expected.  That's why it was so exciting to see them calm down and make some plays in the 2nd half.

 That said, the defense today was outstanding and this is the unit most of us optimists were expecting to carry the team this year, regardless of how bad the offense was.  They made critical stand after critical stand after being put in bad spots by the offfense and special teams all day. Hat's off to the defensive coaches and players.  I thought (on first glance) that the linebacker play was much improved this week.  Ezeh seemed a step quicker to get up into the hole, and the d-line was pushing the los back on most plays.

The return game is almost comically bad at this point, guys are just pressing so hard back there and forgetting basic rules of ball security.  I hope that with experience they will just "play" and stop thinking so much about trying to make a big play when a solid one will do just fine. 

09/26/2008 - 10:21am Clemson and WV were "letit title contenders"?

Not really sure about that. Perhaps in the eyes of the MSM.

I wasn't watching the game with a close eye or anything, but USC's "talent gap" sure as hell didn't manifest itself on some of the plays I saw. I saw a lot of bad fundamental tackling (a lack of getting low and wrapping up) and an inability to sustain blocks -- which led to USC having Sanchez roll out much more then they probably would have wanted. Sanchez did not look as accurate throwing on the run as from the pocket.

I give a ton of credit to the OSU gameplan on defense, whatever they did as far as blitzes and stunts really forced USC's hand.

Like you said, just a great game to watch and reminded me why I like college football so much.

09/23/2008 - 11:08pm On this particular play...

The D line did its job well enough -- but the linebackers made critical mistakes -- I wonder if the UFR will back that up -- that the problem is in the linebacking unit.

09/23/2008 - 8:51pm That's a bad read and reaction by Ezeh

Ezeh's key is the fullback probably. He's slow to get downhill and then lets himself get turned to the line of scrimmage. That's just poor reaction then compounded by bad footwork. He needs to confront the ND blocker (chipping center I believe) in the hole or not allow himself to get blocked, a swim move or forearm would have been perfect there but he was in no position to make it because he let himself get turned.