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Recent Comments

Date Title Body
11/21/2015 - 4:22pm Offsides

The offsides on defense is killing me. I played dline for 11 years and never once was offsides. Watch. The. Ball. That is all.

11/21/2015 - 4:18pm Tough

I have decided to cheer against Sparty but not for Osu. My soul feels much better that way.

11/21/2015 - 4:15pm Will be there

Last game was '13 at the Big House. Pumped for next weekend

10/25/2014 - 7:14pm Forgot

I forgot that thy had the bye week to prepare. Did not look like they had an extra week.

10/25/2014 - 7:07pm Hayes

Ran like he cared and pushed to get extra yards. Give the man more touches

10/25/2014 - 6:20pm 100 yards

Boom goes the dynamite.

10/11/2014 - 11:04pm Padding the stats

Adding another sack to the stats.

10/11/2014 - 10:42pm DG

DG = heart

10/17/2012 - 11:04pm Slants

This is a perfect example of why it is not always necessary to slant toward the run play.  In college we had a similar play call with the line slanting and the LBs going the opposite way as the line.  This allows the LBs to fill those gaps even faster because they can anticipate where they need to fill.

09/27/2012 - 11:18pm Exactly

This is a much easier choice for me.  A State loss only helps us in the division.  Now when State played ND I had a much harder time who I wanted to win.  This choice is made with the head only.

09/27/2012 - 11:03pm Gap coverage

Though it is not ideal that Washington gets reached he does a great job of trying to fill in the gap from behind.  Roh is the real deal here.  By setting that edge so quick get makes that cut happen so quick and it allows Morgan to shoot the hole. I would love to have Washington not get reached.  I was always taught that if you are shaded on a man and than he cannot reach you.  If Washington can be in that gap than the RB has to cut way back and should be cleaned up by the WDE for a loss.

09/18/2012 - 9:38pm D-line Takeoff

The more I watch this play the more I am concerned with the d-line takeoff from their stances.  It is true that Bolden needs to get to the B-gap in front of him and fill with more authority but that is only part of the story.  There is no one to fill the A-gap.  The one technique needs to either spin back and show up in the hole or hold their ground and not get washed which widens the hole for the RB. Also looking at the takeoff or first step of the d-line, was concerning.  They are all very straight up and not taking very good steps.  Having experience in both a read-and-react d-line and an attacking style d-line, the first step dictates who has the advantage in the trenches.  The d-line either needs to be aggressive and get into their run fits faster or control the man in front of them better with their hands.  The steps that I see (especially in the third picture with the question mark) the line is too high, not using their hands, and not stepping straight but looping their steps.  This type of steps will result in much bigger holes and worse huge cutback lanes against a better team.

09/17/2012 - 2:38am Juxtaposition

This is a great example of the subtle differences between the ND offense and our own.   Our play is a counter based play.  The pulling linemen allows for the RB to turn the corner and get going downhill as quickly as possible.  The ND play is more of a draw.  It has a sprint out pass look with a draw coming back the other way.  Both plays would be effective in our offense, especially if the rollout pass packages were gaining positive yards.  

09/12/2012 - 3:28am Defensive thinking

By keeping the corners back, Michigan is creating a strategic advantage for itself.  In the 4-3 under defense, it is very easy to run a cover 2 look with the corners up on the WR and the safeties playing back covering the back halves of the field.  This seems like an appropriate defense to play against a run heavy team because it allows the corners to re-route the WRs and then quickly get involved in run support.  However, this defense limits what Michigan can do with its safeties.  By having the safeties back covering the deep halves of the field, it makes it extremely difficult for them to come up and be alley run defenders in the running game.  By keeping the corners back it gives Michigan more flexibility in two ways.  One, it allows the corners time to read if it is a run or pass play.  If it is a run, they have space to run up and beat the WR to a spot on the field where they can be a contain player or help out in run support.  If it is a pass play, they have the space to not get beat deep and give up a big play.  AF will get their yards running the ball; do not let them get big plays in the pass game. Second, it allows Michigan to move their safeties around to create different 8 man fronts.  If the safeties are back in a cover 2 and begin to move up for run support, then there is no help over the top and you are opening yourself up for big plays in the passing game.  By allowing  a safety to drop down you can have multiple 8 man front looks and can play different games with the offense.  You can change up who has the QB and pitch on option and try to confuse the blocking assignments and/or mix up your underneath cover to take away quick slants or other short routes in the passing game.  Having the corners back does not mean they abandon run responsibility.  They still must contain runs and make tackles when given the opportunity.  Keeping the corners back was a strategic move to give the defense more options while limiting the offense to big plays.  A good defense understands what the offense is best at and what it wants to do.  The defense then goes out and  takes away or limits the best it can what that offense wants to do.  Michigan recognized what AF wanted to do and set up their defense to put players in the best positions and situations to stop the offense.

09/09/2012 - 3:39am Defense lack of stats

The AFA's offense is based on keeping the defense off balance.  By forcing the defense to account for the fullback, quarterback, and wing backs on each and every play, the defense must simplify different aspects of their scheme (make coverages more simple, having only one check for motion, etc.).  Trying to do too much against the triple option is what gets a defense into trouble.  That is why you always hear the great announcer cliche "they must play assignment football".  This is a great and stupid saying.  It is great because this is what makes a defense great.  When everyone does what they need to do on a given play, the offense should not be able to find too many weak points to attack.  It is stupid because this is what a defense does every game and I find it hard to believe that Mattison is stressing assignment football against the triple option and not with other offenses that they will see (especially with such a young defense).  The triple option offense preaches ball security and getting positive yards.  Turnovers give the other team more chances to score and being a run heavy team (even one that plays at a fast tempo) attempts to limit the amount of plays the opposing team gets one way or another.  By getting positive yards it creates more options for the offense (like getting that big pass play or getting the chance to go for it on fourth down a bunch of times).  For this reason it should be expected that there would be more blanks in the defensive stat sheet.  TFL's are hard to come by when there are quick dive plays and off tackle plays coming at you.  Additionally with option plays on the edge, that allows the offense to make you guess wrong, TFL's are more of a luxury than the norm.  Turnovers are hard to come by when you play a team that is experienced in a system, focuses on ball security and as a defensive player are playing the game a step slower because you don't know where the ball is and are having to make sure that you have the pitch or the qb or the fb depending on the a variety of factors.  This is why triple options teams want to get positive yards, so they can keep the defense guessing.  At the end of the game when the defense knew that the AFA had to open things up, you could finally see the d-line and defense as a whole move faster and be more aggressive.  This is why teams like the AFA need to keep it close.  I was hoping that the defense could get some stops early because I knew that the offense would put up points.  If this occurred and the AFA was forced to open things up ealier on in the game, I would predict that you would have seen many more of those defensive columns filled up.  The defense would have been able to exploit the weakness of the AFA attack by putting them in more situations when they knew that they were going to have to pass the ball.

09/08/2012 - 2:27am slants

In college I played on the d-line in a 4-3 under scheme and when we slanted it was not always necessary for the linebackers to go the opposite way of the slanting d-line. There were two different slant techniques.  One type was to get the d-line into a different gap.  We ran a one gap run defense.  So when the d-line slanted, all that was really changing was the front that the defense ended up in.  But everyone still had one gap to defend. The second type was slanting with an added blitz.  When this occurred it was then necessary for the linebackers to go the opposite way of the line so they could cover the proper gap and replace the blitzing man.

The last thing I wanted to add about slanting the line was how if the line went the opposite way as the run it was going to be an automatic win for the offense.  From first-hand experience I would have to disagree with this assumption.  If you are slanting right and the run is going to your right, then it is necessary to beat your man to the next gap.  The comments I have read would agree that this is true and the slant has been successful because it has given the d-line a start in the proper direction. When you are slanting right and the run is going to your left, you are again given a chance to use you momentum to make a play using proper technique.  Mattison stressing the need for proper technique really made me want to voice this comment.  By getting in the space from the lineman moving to block where the d-line was, it is very possible to get in behind the lineman and get up field.  Slanting throws off the timing of the o-line and makes combo blocks on the d-line harder. This allows for those creases to occur even if the d-line slants away from the run.  As long as the d-line uses proper steps and leverage, there is no reason that slanting away from the run is less effective than slanting toward the run.