Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Michigan Tuesday: Will the Real Wolverines, Please Stand Up, Please Stand Up

I'm sure most of you consume the great work of Brian and team at Mgoblog on a daily basis.  His latest work from Monday had a sentence that really resonated with me.    Can any part of this team decide whether it sucks or it is awesome? Lewan and Gallon excepted, it seems like everything Michigan does is prone to insane swings.

That is a perfect description of this entire season.  This team has looked great or terrible all year.  It even effects the coaches.   Let's take a look at some of the examples:

Devin Gardner is obvious:  Played well against ND and Indiana, poorly against AkConn and Penn State (first half).

The Defense pretty much wins games against AkConn and plays well against CMU and ND.  Can't do anything to stop a 2 minute drive against Penn State and can't even get lined up against IU who just run's down the field for score after score.

Big Al Borges:  Calls a wide open game like Indiana or shuts the entire offense down against Penn State.  There are also a ton of examples from last year.  Don't be surprised if Big Al tries to run right into State's #1 defense in a couple of weeks.  

Brendan Gibbons:  started the year looking like one of the best kickers in the nation and now is 2 of his last 5, struggling to get the ball in the air with two blocks.

Brady Hoke:  has an undefeated record in the Big House.  Best win outside of Stadium and Main, is the Sugar Bowl where Virginia Tech played worse then Michigan that night.  Team has played poorly in road trips this year to UConn and Penn State.

Thomas Gordon: was suspended for game 1 and it seemed like he never game back.  Through 6 games he has 14 total tackles.  He of course had two big interceptions against IU on Saturday.

Raymon Taylor:  locks down one of the best WR's in the country against Penn State and gets burned regularly against Indiana.

Frank Clark:  Looks like Clowney for about 3 plays a game.   The rest of the game he just disappears (which you could also call a Clowney I guess )

Dennis Norfleet:  returns kickoffs to mid field and then runs in circles and gets tackled on the 10 yard line.   Why no offensive snaps, besides those reserves?  Is Jeremy Jackson better then Norfleet and Hayes?

I have yet to see the offensive line have a really good game.  Minnesota maybe?  The defensive line has struggled all year. 

BTW:  I blame Funchess and Fitz's up and down production on Devin and the offensive line.

The biggest issue at this point, is that Michigan has struggled to beat really bad teams when they play poorly.   Michigan now has the likes of MSU #1 defense,  Iowa and Northwestern's spread on the road.   Nebraska and #4 Ohio State at home.    Michigan doesn't have the luxury of playing poorly any longer. 

Other guys that seem to be lost:
  • Drew Dileo, I know he got banged up against IU.  He should be getting 5 balls a game.
  • Like Funchess, Jake Butt is a walking miss match. 
  • Why isn't Justice Hayes in as a 3rd down back more?
  • Cam Gordon could be rushing the passer more or covering Tight Ends that have been killing Michigan on 3rd downs.

If this team doesn't rebound and play much better from here on out, Hoke needs to make a bunch of changes on his staff this winter/spring.  I think playing this inconsistent is due to two reasons, being a young player and/or poor coaching.   Most of the guys called out above are not freshman.

1 comment:

Scott K said...

that picture is a classic.... i'm not sure what was creepier... mustburger oozing over Katherine Webb, or musburger trying to convince people he's a big eminem fan, while slim shady had a near comatos display in the booth....