Friday, August 31, 2018

Notre Dame Preview

Time: 7:30 PM
Location: ND Stadium
Weather:  80 and 10% Rain
Line:  ND -1

This series ended in 2014 when ND signed up for the ACC.  It got re-scheduled after Jimmy called Brian and asked if they wanted to re-start it.  Both teams recruit similar players and now this rivalry is renewed after a 4 year break.

Both teams are very similar with tough defenses and concerns on offense.

Tale of the Tape 

ND OL vs. UM DL = Michigan
ND QB vs. UM QB = Michigan
Intangibles = Notre Dame
ND QB vs. UM Defense = Michigan
UM O vs. ND D = Push
Special Teams = Notre Dame
Coaching = Michigan

The best battle on the field might the Michigan defensive line vs. ND offensive line.  I'm a believer that Michigan has the #1 defensive line in the country which will come at you in waves.   Michigan is deep and experienced and will pressure Brandon Wimbush all day.  Brandon is not a passer but can get first downs with his feet, so Michigan will have to be careful not to rush too many, giving Wimbush open field to run.

The issue is, which team will be able to score enough points against a solid defense.  Which usually means, whoever wins the turnover battle has the best chance to win a low scoring game.

Scream, Warde Manuel couldn't negotiate himself out of a paper bag if...………..
  • Michigan's offense looks like 2017
  • Michigan's defense gets tired because they are on the field a lot 
  • Michigan loses the turnover stat 
  • Michigan can't run the ball 
  • Wolverines have the night game blues 
Yell, this is a new year! if...……………….
  • Shea Patterson is the answer at QB 
  • Michigan's offense is moving the ball and scoring TD's
  • ND's QB's look like Florida's QB's 
  • Michigan's Defense dominates 
  • Special Teams are good enough
When I walked out of a cold and rainy Outback Bowl last January, I was as down on this program as I have ever have been.   The Wolverines on that day, were awful and looked every bit like a poor football team playing for nothing.   I felt like someone just sold me a $1000 fake Rolex.  Changes had to be made and Jimmy made them.   This team seems stronger and ready for big time football.   Many questions still remain, which will be answered at 7:30 tomorrow.  

These teams are very similar folks and both will try to run the ball to win.  ND will run at the QB position and Michigan will try to run it with their two talented tailbacks.   When I watched the ND Spring Game, I was impressed by the ND WR's.   They are big and talented but Wimbush struggles with his accuracy.   It also won't help that Gary and Winovich will be in his ear on most throws. 

This is an old story, but for Michigan to win Shea has to have a good game.  This is why he came to Ann Arbor and the spotlight is his now.   ND will stack the line to stop the run and Shea will have to hit Nico/DPJ and Michigan TE's to score points.   I also would love to see a few dump offs to the RB's.    Let's spread the field and have some fun.  

I'm concerned about Michigan's special teams, mainly punting.  The Wolverines can't miss field goals, as points will be at a premium.   I believe this will be a low scoring game with both defenses dominating.  If that is the case, I love the Wolverines defense even on the road and at night. 

Michigan 24 ND 17


Renegade said...

"This series ended in 2014 when ND signed up for the ACC."

From Wednesday's post: "... after the Fighting Irish joined the ACC."

If by this you mean ND football is an ACC member I believe you would be incorrect. As far as I can tell the football team is still independent, although they do play 5 ACC teams each season. Many of ND's other sports are ACC members.

dude1984 said...

It's finally here!

I'd like to see the offense stay balanced play calling out of a variety of formations until a weakness can be spotted. I haven't done any scouting on ND, but I think most likely there can be a mismatch with the TEs. If ND starts to crowd the line, I'd love to see play action out of power formations.

Key for the defense is to not get caught up the field rushing Winbush. They need to contain him and make him use his arm instead of his legs.

Doc Holliday said...

I would let anyone in these comments call plays, instead of whoever called plays for our Michigan Wolverines tonight. Dreadful. Embarrassing.

Tim said...

Agreed. Our play calling so weird I assumed they let a random fan call a few...

Goose said...

Wonder who's gonna win the book? Who on this site predicted Notre Dame to win.