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Date Title Body
05/30/2018 - 3:35am Not surprising at all

Watch the Florida game from last year and then watch the Minnesota or Indiana game. There is a dramatic contrast in terms of both personnel and gameplan. The Michigan coaches basically scrapped the spread passing game and quit using their wide receivers after Speight and Black got hurt.

Once the coaches realized that the quarterbacks on the roster weren't good enough to execute the passing game that Pep wanted to run, they went hyper-conservative with extremely heavy sets and multiple tight ends used on every play. Midway through the season, I think I even remember Brian pointing out that we were running several plays with just one wide receiver being sent out on a route.

So these numbers need to be interpreted in context. Michigan basically replaced their wide receivers with tight ends after the first few games of the season. The fact that most of our wideouts were true freshman only exacerbated things.

04/15/2018 - 1:32pm The next Terry Richardson.

The next Terry Richardson.

01/02/2018 - 1:23pm I think most of the issues

I think most of the issues probably come down to poor coaching. I am now honestly wondering if the innovation of the Standford offense was more due to David Shaw or Harbaugh. I have no clue.

I think the coaches probably feel like their hands are tied with the youth at wide receiver and the constant rotation at quarterback. It is probably true that the offense they try to run is more difficult to pick up for younger players than most of the other offenses around the country.

Based on the comments from that USC player after the game, however, it seems like the staff is trying to adjust to the youth on offense by running really simple stuff. This begs the question: is the offense too complex right now or too simple?

Either way, the problem seems to lie more with the coaches (including the current coaching configuration) than the players--as flawed as the offensive personnel may be. At the very least, UM needs a full time WR coach and one full time OL coach. Otherwise, I am affraid that the wideouts (who have all the potential in the world) will not develop properly and the OL will continue to be inconsistent. I think we may need to consider bringing in a full time QB coach as well.

Michigan's odd coaching configuration has not been working. They need to go back to a more traditional configuration. It just doesn't seem like our players are being coached up on offense right now. Peter's problem is mental, not physical; he is slow making reads. Based on recruiting profiles, I think the same is true for the wide receivers. This team is no doubt young, but they are also poorly coached. Changes with the offensive coaching staff need to be made.

01/02/2018 - 12:06am Higdon

He is a slightly above average Big Ten back. Nothing more, nothing less. Michigan has not had a truly special running back in a long time.

12/31/2017 - 5:43pm I doubt both of those guys

I doubt both of those guys leave; it is a possibility though. Even if that is the case, I still think taking so many DBs in a small class is overkill--especially with how many capable/talented guys we currently have at those spots.

Again, if they were elite prospects, it wouldn't bother me so much. But possibly taking a bunch of under the radar guys at a spot that is fully stocked with talented players is odd to me.

It could potentially hinder Michigan from landing more talented or more highly-rated corners and safeties in the 2019 class.

12/31/2017 - 5:26pm Yes, because every

Yes, because every under-the-radar instate corner turns out to be just like Desmond King.

12/31/2017 - 5:08pm Vincent Gray

The instate corner that we recently offered just decommitted this weekend. Someone put in a crystal ball for UM yesterday, I think. Personally, I don't understand taking so many defensive backs in a small class when everyone from our secondary returns next year.

I mean, we still have JKP, Thomas, and St. Juste (spelling?) all waiting their turn. I get taking elite prospects at that spot, but I don't get taking under the radar guys at a position that is fully stocked with talented guys....

12/31/2017 - 4:27pm Thanks for the info! I have

Thanks for the info! I have high hopes for him; think he has great potential. Hopefully Walker is patient and sticks it out because I can see him becoming one of the better backs in the Big Ten in the future.

12/31/2017 - 4:10pm Walker

What is the word on Kareem Walker? Anything you can share?

12/28/2017 - 12:48pm Punting

Michigan got killed in punting exchanges all year. Hopefully it's something that can get fixed by next season. Wasn't Robbins one of the better punters coming out of high school? I'm not sure what other options they have right now.

11/27/2017 - 2:16pm Yep

Add the Iowa and FSU games to the list as well. UM's defense has had a lot of opportunities to close out games late but have absolutely struggled in that area. They've had a hard time coming up big in clutch situations, whether on pivotal third downs, in the redzone, or simply late in games.

11/18/2017 - 9:50pm Safeties

Don Brown's defense puts a ton of pressure on the safeties. If you don't want to get burnt through the air against competent pass offenses (see PSU this year and Colorado last year), you really need elite athletes at safety in this defense.

Here's the problem: Michigan hasn't recruited any elite safeties under Harbaugh. It's basically the only position that UM hasn't recruited well, which is probably going to be problematic for the future. I will say that Michigan has had some bad luck on perfectly thrown balls down the field, but our safeties are consistently getting beat in coverage.

11/18/2017 - 4:15pm Yep

I have been saying it all year! This defense lays down in the face of adversity. They give up a few plays on a drive and then they quit. In some ways, I would rather have a bend, but don't break defense. The three and outs are great, but, every once in a while, it would be nice to force a team to kick a field goal when they drive into our territory.

11/18/2017 - 4:01pm Disagree

This game was over before Peters got hurt. It ended when UW went up 14-10. O'Korn played just as good as Peters would have. He was actually pretty accurate and seemed to make pretty good reads, but was plagued by dropped passes. This team is not good enough to win right now without the defense holding good teams to field goals, which isn't happening.

11/18/2017 - 3:46pm Three and Out or Bust

This defense is the exact opposite of bend, but don't break. They either get a quick stop or give up a touchdown. When was the last time this defense held a good team to a field goal when it mattered?

This has been a problem all year. If a team gets a couple chunk plays on a drive, our defense just quits and allows them to walk in for a touchdown. It just seems like they are so fragile mentally.

11/04/2017 - 7:58pm Injuries

Onwenu, Issac, Perry, and Wheatley all out per Baumgardner.

10/25/2017 - 2:42pm Just not sure if there is

Just not sure if there is some issue with McCall outside of football (grades, etc....). As far as I remember, a lot of schools--including UM--basically chose to pass on him early in the process. I could be totally off base here, but that's how I thought he ended up at Kentucky.

10/25/2017 - 1:14pm Honestly, it would probably

Honestly, it would probably be wise for Michigan to take two guards in this class. I just don't know if there are two decent guard prospects in this class who are interested. This is obviously a huge loss since we don't have any highly rated guards on our roster behind the current starters.

Everyone around here seems to be wholly focused on tackles, but guard is quickly becoming an issue as well.

10/18/2017 - 2:11pm Yep

The only way we win this game is if:

1. We win the turnover battle (not likely)

2. We hold PSU to field goal attempts, keeping them out of the end zone for the most part (I personally have been somewhat disappointed with Michigan's redzone defense thus far this year. So, based on what I've seen, this doesn't seem very likely, though it's possible)

3. We run the ball extremely well (more likely than the first two)

4. We hit a couple big play action passes down the field (possible, but not necessarily likely)

10/14/2017 - 4:22pm Some Issues on Defense

I get that it's unpopular to say negative things about this defense since they are clearly the strongest unit on our team, but there are some reoccurring issues that I've noticed over the last few weeks.

When we don't blitz, our pass rush is somewhat suspect. I have noticed this the last few games. We struggle to get home way too often when we rush only four. Also, for as good as our defense is, we seem to give up a lot of touchdowns in the redzone. MSU was 2 for 2 last week. Purdue and Indiana both did better than I think most would like. I am just surprised that such a good defense has seemingly struggled to hold teams to field goals in the redzone.

Again, I know it's unpopular to criticize this defense, but they are not perfect. With that said, they are the only reason we are 5-1, and they are being put in pressure situations week after week.

10/10/2017 - 1:58am Playcalling/Gameplan

Here is my take on the MSU game:

1. The opening drive showcased great balance between the run and the pass, which kept MSU off balance. Personally, I was very surprised how well we ran the ball on that first drive. Before the game, it seemed like the consensus opinion was that we were not going to be able to run very effectively against MSU.

2. I think the coaches essentially agreed with the prevailing pre-game sentiment from the fan base, which suggested that were going to struggle on the ground in this one (see Brian's game preview), and therefore they decided that the best way to attack MSU was through the air.

3. One could argue that after we displayed the ability to run on them a little bit, we should have continued to highlight the running game within the overarching gameplan. I think the coaches distrust the OLine and probably thought that the early success on the ground was not going to last once MSU made some adjustments. I will say that, unlike some people on this board, I am not totally sure that the coaches were incorrect about this.

4. I've seen many people complain about the playcalling in the second half, arguing that the coaches should have essentially ran the ball every down once the monsoon hit. I understand this line of thinking, but a question is in order: do you actually believe that this team is capable of driving all the way down the field and scoring a touchdown against a good defense by running the ball every down? Personally, I don't--and clearly the coaches don't either.

5. Yes, we had a few impressive runs in the second half, but there was no way that MSU was going to allow us to move the ball all the way down the field by running it over and over. Michigan's offensive line has simply not demonstrated the consistency to do this at any point this season. My main complaint with the playcalling in the second half is that it didn't seem like we were utilizing play action hardly at all. It seems like play action would have been effective against their aggressive linebackers, especially since we did have some impressive runs in the second half.

6. Though I do believe that either (a) certain coaches need to be let go on the offensive staff or (b) the delegation of responsibilities on the offensive coaching staff needs to be reconfigured, I don't think that the play calling was as bad as many are making it out to be. Before the game, it appears that basically everyone agreed--coaches and fans alike--that we were going to have to move the ball through the air in this one.

The coaches stayed consistent with this line of thinking and called the game accordingly. People can argue that once the monsoon hit, the coaches should have adjusted to the weather. A question arises: if the coaches would have abandoned the pass once the heavy rain rolled in, would the end result have been any different? I personally don't think it would have. This is because I don't think our OLine is consistent enough to continually string together successful run plays. The fact that many of UM's run plays were immediately stuffed at the line in this game is evidence of that fact.

09/09/2017 - 4:05pm Some Thoughts

Chris Evans looks less explosive and less dynamic this year. Anyone else feel this way? Good thing Isaac has taken a step forward. Perry has also progressed this year; he looks faster and more athletic overall.

This was an extremely ugly game. It was not very enjoyable to watch. Hopefully this performance will motivate the team to make adjustments and improve as they move forward.

After two games, it seems like Speight has regressed. He definitely played better last year. I don't remember him missing this many short and intermediate throws. Maybe he focused too much attention on the deep ball over the offseason and ended up ignoring other aspects of his game. I don't know....

09/01/2017 - 2:18pm Right Tackle

Yeah, I agree that it won't be as bad as Brian is predicting. It should be encouraging to fans to hear that Ulizio ascended past Runyan and JBB. You may argue that surging past those two guys isn't accomplishing much, but it is still a positive development. At the very least, he will be better than Runyan and JBB.

09/01/2017 - 1:58pm 2018 Oline

The 2018 offensive line may still not be as great as some fans are hoping. The interior should be really good or even great, but both tackle spots could be just average.

At LT, we might be looking at a competition between Newsome, Honigford, and Stueber. Newsome is a total mystery at this point and the other two will be redshirt freshmen. At RT, we may be looking at a competition between Ulizio, JBB, and Hall (it sounds like Filiaga might be a guard, and I think Runyan will probably move back inside to back up Ruiz at center). Overall, I think we will probably be somewhere around average at both of these spots.

In 2018, the thing that we have going for us is better depth and better competition. Also, though OT might be our weakest position on the team next year (partly because we will be stacked everywhere else), at least we will have Frey coaching that position.

08/31/2017 - 12:42am I am wondering who is going

I am wondering who is going to be the nickel/slot corner. Thomas or maybe even JKP?

08/26/2017 - 3:18pm 10-2

The Florida game is the biggest game of the year. If we win that game, we'll go 10-2, and I will be very happy with that. It would represent three straight 10 win seasons heading into a legit national championship run in 2018. If we lose to Florida, we will go 9-3 or even 8-4. I think we will beat Florida, but it will probably be a close game.

The key to this season is staying healthy at a few key positions: OT, CB, S. David Long and L. Hill need to stay on the field throughout the year; I don't trust Watson all that much, and the others are way too green at this point. Losing Washington was a big shot to depth. The same thing can be said for our starting safety's, as well as Mason Cole and whoever is starting at right tackle. These guys need to stay healthy.

I am looking for Ty Isaac to have a breakout year; he has that size-speed combo that we are lacking right now. I am not as high on Higdon as some others on this board due to his size deficiency; he's just a really tiny dude and doesn't break enough tackles. He can hit the home run if you give him a crease, but I don't see him as an every down back. I am looking forward to see if Evans can take the next step. I think he's a special talent.

I think the run game will take a step forward this year and be more effective than in years past. Hopefully we will finally be able to run decently against good teams. On the other hand, our pass protection could take a step back this year. I would take that trade off though, and hopefully Pep's quick passing game can mitigate some of the pass protection issues.

03/27/2017 - 6:11pm Yeah, I don't know; I was

Yeah, I don't know; I was kinda thinking the same thing. He must be trending up with recent MSU and UM offers.

03/27/2017 - 6:09pm Ehh, this will be a small

Ehh, this will be a small class filled with mostly four stars. You can't really be too disappointed with that.

01/03/2017 - 1:53pm Yes

There has been some positive chatter on Dwumfour (I think from the Christmas camp). If we move Gary inside, then we would have four bodies on the interior next year. In 2018, the year that most of us are putting our hope in, Hurst will be gone and possibly Hudson and Irving-Bey could take his place. Paea (spelling?) is also an option, but I've heard he is a much better guard prospect.

Either way, depth is definitely an issue for next year and talent could be an issue in 2018--though there is no way of knowing right now.

01/01/2017 - 5:21pm Yep

If we miss on Filiaga, then this class will be a bit of a disappointment. Don't get me wrong, this class has a lot of talent (I think we have more four star recruits that any other team right now). If we don't land an elite OT, DT, or NT, however, it is hard to consider this class a great one. Great classes fill significant holes and needs on a team's roster.

01/01/2017 - 5:00pm Am I the only one who is

Am I the only one who is extremely annoyed by the fact that Georgia has a 5 loss season and is rewarded with a top 3 class? I don't know what is going on down there. Whenever Michigan has a bad season, our recruiting class takes a hit. Georgia has a bad season and ends up with one of the best classes in the nation. I know the state of Georgia is loaded with talent, but still; I just don't get it.

01/01/2017 - 2:31pm bad recruiting news

I don't want to start a new thread, so I'll just say this hear. Solomon just received 3 CB's to Bama on 247, which indicates to me that the Bama insiders know something. Also, Steve Wiftlong, who is usually right, apparently recently stated that he believes Oklahoma leads for Filiaga at the moment.

That would be two huge misses at our two biggest positions of need, which obviously would really hurt. I'm not really sure if Tufele is a realistic option right now either; it seems like most people think we are running third for him.

12/19/2016 - 12:38pm Filiaga

I think Filiaga might announce this week as well. I saw something on twitter about how his top four schools will find out where they placed this week.

12/15/2016 - 3:51pm It was actually a quote from the Bible

The book of Isaiah....

12/13/2016 - 5:05pm Right

So they could potentially end up with 3 five star corners. Unbelievable.

12/13/2016 - 2:21pm Offers

Dillon also has the best offer sheet by far out of all 3 commits. So it's not just your eyes. Kurt Taylor actually has better offers than Samuel (according to the lists displayed on 247), both in terms of quality and quantity, which is interesting.

12/12/2016 - 6:05pm Slaton

Slaton could be a possibility at NT. Might be a long shot at this point, but we really need bodies on the Dline. The interior defensive line is the biggest remaining need in this class (I think we will finish very well on the Oline, so I'm not concerned with that position group anymore).

Unless we move Gary inside, right now we have 3 total players on the depth chart on the interior of the defensive line, and one of them is completely unproven. It would obviously be really nice to land an elite talent who can contribute right away.

12/09/2016 - 4:54pm Reply

Yeah, I'm not really sure who deserves the first team all-American accolade the most. I'm not certain how their stats compare, but I watched a few PSU and Wisconsin games this year and both teams have starting tight ends who I feel were at least comparable to Jake Butt this year.

12/09/2016 - 3:23pm Jake Butt

This might not be a popular opinion, but Butt did not have an elite season this year. Even Brian alluded to this on the front page the other day. He struggled with drops this year, especially in critical situations. He also is not great in the run game, but that has been an issue throughout his time at UM. I'm not saying he wasn't good; he just wasn't really dominate in any game this year.

02/03/2016 - 10:33pm Snowflakes

I think this will be a very good class. It could have been a great class had Hamilton and Elliott not decommitted, but I am still happy with how it turned out.

Coming into this cycle, I thought cornerback and linebacker were the biggest position needs. I am very happy with the way both groups materialized. We obviously got two elite corners, but I am also very excited about the linebackers (a lot of high upside guys with really good athleticism and speed). Most of the linebackers are also from the deep south and boast really impressive offer sheets.

Next year OT, DT, and safety seem to be the biggest needs. I am hoping that Harbaugh is able to be proactive in mitigating some of the negative recruiting in next year's cycle. Hopefully he learns from some of his mistakes and makes a few adjustments to his recruiting tactics as well.

01/01/2016 - 12:15pm Snyder Tweet

Mark Snyder posted the following on Twitter:

"Punter Blake O'Neill, who was reported to have a knee issue this week, just jogged on the field in full pads and looks fine."

But I'll take it that you are already aware of this. I was excited for a second.

01/01/2016 - 12:08pm Blake O'Neill

Apparently he is dressed and looks perfectly fine as well.

11/02/2015 - 12:40pm Linebackers and Safeties

Linebackers and safeties seemed to be the main culprits in this game.

10/31/2015 - 6:57pm Clock

Hard for the clock to move when every play is either a first down or a touchdown....

06/02/2015 - 4:59pm Michael Onwenu

FWIW, a lot of people on 247sports think it's Onwenu.

04/08/2015 - 7:50pm Lavert Hill

It sounds like it might be Lavert Hill flipping from his Penn State verbal. There is a lot of smoke on 247 about it. I know there are a lot of mixed feelings about Gregg Henson on this board, but he recently posted on his blog that Hill was flipping to UM as well. We'll see. 

12/09/2014 - 4:50pm No clue. If he is, I am

No clue. If he is, I am sorry. I ran across this on the 247 board.

11/30/2013 - 6:52pm One more question: Do you

One more question: Do you know how long games typically stay up on BTN2GO? I am assuming they take the games down after a short period of time.

11/30/2013 - 6:45pm Thanks

Thanks for the helpful info; I appreciate it.

11/30/2013 - 6:42pm Work

I was working, and I am pleasantly surprised to hear that we put up a fight. I know, my expectations and standards are pretty low at this point....