Friday, November 4, 2011

Iowa Preview

Time: 12:00 EST
Location: Iowa City
Weather: Partly Cloudy High of 60 Low of 46
Line: Michigan -3.5

Each week the Michigan Football program has another test to see if they are a different team then the squad that took the field the last 3 years.   This week is no exception.   RR's Michigan's program had a hard time beating quality opponents on the road in the Big Ten.  If my memory servers me correctly, I think the wins on the road in the Big 10 over the past 3 years are against Minnesota, Indiana, and Purdue.  Not exactly a murders row is it?

Michigan has done a great job protecting the Big House where they have 6 wins this season.  That was a must, but they have found themselves 1-1 on the road with a win over Northwestern and a loss to MSU.  So which team will the Wolverines put on the field the next two weeks?  It will be easy for them to get up for Nebraska and OSU at the Big House but the season might be defined by these next two weeks.  

Iowa is one of those strange Big Ten teams this year.  They have looked decent at times and terrible at other times.  If you had asked me if Michigan could lose to a team that lost to Minnesota  after Michigan beat them 58-0, I would have given you a clear "no way".   Now, I'm not so sure. 

Why?  You might ask?

I think teams play very hard after an embarrassing loss and mostly at home.   There is nothing better to heal the team and a fan base is a big win over a named opponent.    Michigan won't see the same team that played at Minnesota last week, they will see a motivated squad that will be desperate for a win. 

Tale of the Tape  

Michigan Offense vs Iowa D = Denard and Fitz

Iowa Passing vs Michigan's Secondary = The Count and TWolf

Iowa Running Game vs Michigan Linebackers = Marcus Coker

Intangibles = Pink locker room, home field and bad loss last week

Coaching = Push (Greg Mattison sent his son to play for Iowa)

On paper Michigan has the better team and I actually like Michigan's pass defense a little bit better with The Count and JT Floyd at the corners and Troy at Safety.   Kovacs is the much better run stopper and I hope he is healthy, but if I had to guess he probably will be out. 

Iowa's game plan will be a balanced one.  They will want to be physical and throw to the tight ends and WR McNutt down the field.  Their offense is based off the Big Ten's leading rusher Marcus Coker who is a big physical back.   Iowa plays well at home and will be looking to score a ton of points to protect a pretty weak defense up front. 

Sing Hail to the Victors if..........................
  • The Michigan Defense can stop the run
  • The Michigan offense keeps drives alive with short accurate passes
  • Denard and Fitz each have over 100 yards
  • Michigan has no more then 1 turnover on offense
  • Michigan slows McNutt and limits big plays

Say, how did this team lose to Minnesota if............
  • The Michigan linebackers lose contain on runs and forgets to cover the tight ends.
  • Al Borges starts calling crazy plays from the press box 
  • Iowa's defense is much improved from their performance last week
  • The pink locker room and the 11:00AM local start causes the Wolverines to sleep walk

I don't like this game at all.  I could see a ton of things happening from a Michigan blow out to a Michigan loss.   Big Ten teams have played terrible on the road this year and Iowa got embarrassed last week with a loss to the worst team in the league.   Michigan might have played their most complete game of the year last week but will that translate to Iowa City?  Michigan's defense has played well against the run this year and is the one of thing that Coach Mattison and Hoke stresses with the defense everyday.    Though when they saw the most balanced offense they have seen in East Lansing they gave up lots of yards on the ground.    Iowa has a balanced offense but was stopped last week by Minnesota.    This is crazy!   Time to prove Michigan is one of the better teams in the Big Ten and it doesn't matter where they play the game.  Flush the last three years down the toilet and don't beat yourself.  Denard had a chance to beat Iowa at Iowa his freshman year and threw a pick on the last drive.  He hasn't forgot that and will finish the job this year.  Look for big games from Woolfolk, Demens and Martin on defense - Denard, Fitz and Hemingway on offense.   

Michigan 28 Iowa 21


1 comment:

Alastairanson said...

"I wish to advertise my abode fast." These are words few of us in the UK absolute after a quick convulse at the abstraction of the time and bother bare for axis the angle into a reality.

Midwest Scrapbook