Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Michigan Tuesday: Coach Speak = Not Good Enough Coach

Brady Hoke had his regular round table and press conference yesterday with the folks in the media.  He was clearly defensive of his coaches and players.   I don't think you ever blame a kid but his coaches and strategy needs some further explanations.   Here are the important take-a-ways from his press conference.  The areas I'm concerned with are highlighted in yellow:

Can you update us on Taylor Lewan’s status?
“He’ll be fine. I think he got really two things a little bit. A little bit of a hip deal. Probably was most of it.”

 It seems like the offensive line has had decreasing production over the last three years. The lack of depth has been well documented, but the talent does seem to be there. At what point do you start getting concerned about the coaching?
“Well the talent’s there. It’s young talent. I mean, redshirt freshmen playing, and they have a long ways to go.”

Are you concerned with the way they’re being coached at all?
“No, not at all.”

Looking back, do you think the play-calling at the end of the game was too conservative?
“No. At the end of regulation we put ourselves in position to kick the 52-yard field goal with 20 seconds left. Could have just taken a knee and played for overtime. So I would say no.”  (Bad question, the question should have been, was the play calling in OT too conservative?)

But it seems like you’re trying to make this team be something they’re not yet. Shouldn’t you consider doing what works instead of what you want them to be?
“Yeah, and I think we do that weekly as we look at the opponents you’re going to play. We played a lot of snaps last week out of a nickel defense. And because of number one how we kind of thought we stood up to them with their passing game, I think there were some pretty good things about it. We hit the quarterback 18 times, sacked him 4, two interceptions. From an offensive perspective, point of attack blocking has to be better. I know it can be better. Our fullbacks are pretty good lead blockers when we’re in 21 [personnel]. There’s times when everything’s blocked play-side, which were blocked really well, and a guy slipping off the backside because we weren’t doing a good enough job at cutting off. I think every week you have to look at what gives your guys the best chance to win. I think we look at that and make evaluations. Now did we think we could run the ball more effectively? I don’t think there was a doubt. Did we? No. Well then you have to change a little bit, and I think Al did that over the course of the game.” (not in OT)

If your best playmaker is your quarterback, shouldn’t you put him in positions to make plays instead of milking the clock?
“I think again, you have to look at the percentages. You have to look at what is the benefit of the team and the benefit of what the percentages are. How much time are you going to give them and where are you going to give them the ball? If I had no confidence in our quarterback, with the interceptions that we’ve had, he wouldn’t be our quarterback. I have all the confidence in the world in Devin Gardner. I have confidence in our offensive line getting better.”  (Lies!)

You put the headset on sometimes. When does that help you?
“End of game. End of half. Greg [Mattison] and I talk all the time, so I don’t have to, because we’re standing next to each other. I talk to Al [Borges] before halftime about what we wanted to do at halftime. What his thoughts were. What we wanted to change a little bit. Talked in there. And talked at the end of the half, end of the game. Do you take the knee with 20 seconds and play for overtime and try to throw it down the field with the possibility of fumbling it or them intercepting it, or do you take the chance of completing it and moving forward?”

BHB: Are you kidding me?  He talks to Al a couple times a game.  Al is controlling this entire offense a 100% of the time and Brady talks to him a couple times a game.   I can't believe Brady gives him that type of independence.   If Brady continues that type of non-involvement in the offense, that could lead to his downfall at Michigan.  That is un-believable to me, you can't be that type of head coach in 2013. 

Do you plan to spend more time looking at the offensive line?
“I don’t need to do that. I’ve got a great offensive line coach. I’ve got a great coordinator. I’m with them enough because we go so much against each other. I don’t need to do that. That’s some coach trying to think he’s a hero. That's not me. I'm not a hero.”  (No, your the Head F'ing coach of the Michigan Wolverines, this isn't Ball State - Get more involved - hold your coaches accountable! You probably lost a chance at the Big Ten Title again because Big AL failed at this job again.  Your not the Defensive Line Coach your the Head Coach!! )

Not good enough coach, not nearly good enough. 


Daniel McCarter said...

When you have coached college football, this blog will be more believable instead of ranting about things you have no experience in. Believe in your team and it's coaching staff. 1 loss and the world is ending.

Scott K said...

I'm wondering if Daniel watched a single Michigan game this year.
We should have three losses, including Akron and U Conn.

Michigan needs to be a national powerhouse again... They are not playing like it, they haven't for several years.. The tried and true fans, supporters, booster are getting tired of waiting for our once great team to start looking great again.

If it's a coaches blog you're after maybe you can find one else where.
Like watching Pete Carroll pumped up showing his emotion as USC trounced us in the Rose Bowl, as Lloyd Carr stood stoic, emotionless on the sidelines... I'd like to see our coach to get fired up... He should be pissed right now. This saying that coaches are doing the right things, when half of our games this season were absolute debacles doesn't cut it.

Daniel McCarter said...

I've seen them all and I am a realistic fan. Our team is to inexperienced at the skill positions, offensive line and defensive line to become "great". Frustrating as it is to watch these games as a fan, you need to look at the big picture. Hoke and co. shouldn't rant and scream to you or any media about how unhappy they are with the performance of the team. You don't think the players get an earful in their meetings? I guarantee the coaching staff isn't happy with how the season is going!

True fans stick with their team no matter what, not have whine fest everyday of the week. Do you have any coaching experience, you avoided that question?

Rob said...
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Rob said...

Ok everyone, lets not turn on each other. BHB has every right to vent. He shares a level of frustration we can all relate to. And I agree with him that some of Hoke's responses in that presser were not good. But I also see value in what Daniel was saying in terms of protecting his team and his coach. Its a noble endeavor. And damn, we are a young team. The O line is a position that players grow into over a 2-3 year period. My approach to all this is to just look for the men to play their hearts out and make us proud with their effort, and to see a general pattern of progress between now and the end of the season. And God, please, just be competitive with Ohio and avoid any embarrassing blow out. The rest will take care of itself, and these coaches are great guys and love Michigan, and they are bringing in quality, character players. This ship will right itself. I guarantee you...

Scott K said...

to inexperienced at skill positions to become great? like that true freshman qb that shredded our secondary in 50 seconds to tie the game?
As a matter of fact, I've been a Michigan fan since I was 6 years old... good years and bad. i don't need you to judge how 'true' i am, thanks.
I coached little league and youth hockey, I don't quite get what relevence that has to being a frustrated fan, tired of accepting lame excuses about youth, inexperience and blah blah blah....
You have opinions, as do I, and everyone else. It would be good for you to realize that, and accept it. Opinions aren't facts, they can't be right or wrong, they're personal points of view.
I'm pretty sure ohio state has players graduate, go to jail, flunk out.. they back fill and don't use the 'to inexperienced to be great' excuse, as does Alabama, LSU, Oregon...
Have a good day, and GO BLUE

8787JD said...

I suspect Brady comes from the school that he will never, in the media, question or place blame on his players or coaches. He'll take the bullet or let the entire team take it. Behind closed doors, though, I suspect he is way more hands on than he leads us to believe with his answers above. I know we want him to say Al is the problem or we should be blitzing more, but he never won't. I trust Brady. He can obviously coach and recruit at the highest level. I know I am not smarter than Al when it comes to offenses and certainly not smarter than Greg Mattison when it comes to defenses. I am sure they had good, justified reasons for calling the game the way they did. Let's trust them to right the ship. I am happy to have coaches that know the Michigan of old and have coached some of those great teams. They don't want to fail here. Let's all take a deep breath and hope this team adjusts and gets better over the challenging weeks ahead.

Go Blue and thanks for this blog.

Big35Hurt said...

#1 - We should be 6-0 if not for our reliable kicker having a terrible game. He's a kid. he's human.
#2- Hoke's comments about his interaction with Borges (or lack there of) are disturbing. I mean, c'mon.....that's ridiculous to coach like that.
#3- Kudos to Borges for his adaptability. he saw that the OLine was getting killed and pretty much abandoned the run game with the RB's and went to Gardner on the ground for most of the 2nd half.
#4- I'm not going to blame playcalling in OT. If they were more aggressive and Garnder coughed it up, then the critics would be bitching that we should have been more conservative because Garnder has been turnover-prone.
#5- This team will not become ELITE until the OLine can move the line of scrimmage. They have had top recruiting classes at those positions, so I'm eager to see it pan out. We will always have a strong defense with GM & the talent and speed we are now recruiting. The OLine is definitely the key to taking the next step.

Big35Hurt said...

P.S.- Everyone is all over Lewan's jock about how great he is, but I think back 2 years ago to the National Title game where Bama ran behind Garrett Jones the whole game and he absolutely dominated the game. Lewan has not had anywhere near that impact in any games this year.

maize n blue blood said...

Firing funk should be the the 1st order of business. His resume' is weak and it shows when our o-line is on the fiedl and the running backs can go anywhere. Don't blame the kids when there position coach is terrible. Hoke is to modest when it comes to keeping darrell funk around. The game starts in the trenches and if we can get it going there then we are screwed. So again i say FIRE FUNK.

I can see Al Borges hanging for a while. Our passing game is good, but the d**n running game due to the piss poor offensive line led by darrell funk is killing the offensive production. You can stick a fork in us if we are going without a running game.

Our d-line would not look so bad if they didn't have to spend so much time on the field due to the offensive struggles. We do need to recruit taller corner backs, because the tall wide outs are hurting us.

Devin is very good, but like Denard after so many hits he will be out for a while. You can see in his face that he's tired and doesn't look comfortable.

Bottom line folks if Brady Hoke doesn't replace funk we will be a 7-5 team for as long as he is here.

Hoke's modesty will have him coaching for another team in due time.

Bob said...

Love the passion everyone, even the guys that think I stink. That's what this type of blogs are for. We are fans who will support our team but at the same time call out problems and issues when I see them. I don't need to coach college football to know something is wrong with our program right now.

Chuck Carnahan said...

Penn State has a QB Coach that spends 100% of his time working with Hackenberg and the other QB's in practice......Works on technique, decision making, recognizing the D, calling audibles.....etc.....Borges refuses to accept a QB Coach indicating that he " doesn't work well with other coaches".......WTF, no wonder Denard and Devin never really developed in so many area's and guys like Hackenberg develop so quickly!!! FIRE BORGES!!!!