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JonBenke

GAME #1: Western Michigan @ Michigan

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PRESENTED BY "SEPTEMBER HEISMAN" .. IN THEATRES OCT. 15th

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.. and so it begins ..

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2011 CAPTAINS: DAVID MOLK, MIKE MARTIN, and KEVIN KOGER

18 returning starters, most in the BIG TEN .. and the best player in college football; Denard Robinson

Your Two Deep, brought to you by mgoblog.com -- Your 2011 Two Deep | mgoblog

AND .. FINALLY, THE CHICKEN TURTLE MAN'S PREDICTION ON THE GAME!

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MICHIGAN - 56, WESTERN MICHIGAN - 17

GO BLUE!

Edited by JonBenke

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Here we go baby. I am looking for an explosive start to the game vs. Western. Be nice to lay the wood to them early and often, get everyone fully excited for the following week vs ND.

Denard will have between 300-400 total yards of offense and 3 TDs.

****ing pumped!

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I wish i could get over the feeling of impending terror at the prospect of watching Kovacs, Thomas Gordon, JT Floyd, and Mike Jones as starters this year. Here's hoping it was all coaching.

Rob

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Hoke and Mattison seemed pretty impressed with Kovacs so far. I think JT Floyd can be a lot better as well.

Heres the thing, last year Michigan has such a dynamic offense that they only needed a true middle of the pack defense (between 60-70th in the country), and they couldn't even manage that. You could see how bad the coaching was on Saturdays, players missing the same assignment 3 or 4 times a game and seemingly learning nothing along the way. Our defense was near the bottom last year.

I think Hoke/Mattison will employ a top 50 defense this year and UM will win 10 games.

The last three years have been coaching, and we have had the worst coach. So happy the Brady Hoke era is about to start.

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Hoke and Mattison seemed pretty impressed with Kovacs so far. I think JT Floyd can be a lot better as well.

Heres the thing, last year Michigan has such a dynamic offense that they only needed a true middle of the pack defense (between 60-70th in the country), and they couldn't even manage that. You could see how bad the coaching was on Saturdays, players missing the same assignment 3 or 4 times a game and seemingly learning nothing along the way. Our defense was near the bottom last year.

I think Hoke/Mattison will employ a top 50 defense this year and UM will win 10 games.

The last three years have been coaching, and we have had the worst coach. So happy the Brady Hoke era is about to start.

Much truth here. I do think it's possible Michigan could have a defense between the 60th and 70th best, if things go well. top 50? I don't think that's going to happen with these players. 2013, I think, for a possible top 40 D, 2014 for a top 20 or better. But this year, I'll be happy with top 60.

Rob

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Hoke and Mattison seemed pretty impressed with Kovacs so far. I think JT Floyd can be a lot better as well.

Heres the thing, last year Michigan has such a dynamic offense that they only needed a true middle of the pack defense (between 60-70th in the country), and they couldn't even manage that. You could see how bad the coaching was on Saturdays, players missing the same assignment 3 or 4 times a game and seemingly learning nothing along the way. Our defense was near the bottom last year.

I think Hoke/Mattison will employ a top 50 defense this year and UM will win 10 games.

The last three years have been coaching, and we have had the worst coach. So happy the Brady Hoke era is about to start.

This is my hope as well, I predicted 6-6/7-5 but if the D can achieve middle of the pack and the O doesn't take a huge step backwards it could be a good season.

Depth, lack of it, is my biggest concern for this team.

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Craig Roh was one of many players that mentioned "wanting to transfer" because of a lack of coaching.

Hoke then came, brought Mattison .. and hopefully it's not too late for a few of these guys to breakout.

Defense is about getting players in a position to make plays. I think the new coaching staff will do just that.

Edited by JonBenke

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Part of me doesn't expect a lot out of the offense this game. It's pretty typical to not open the play book to start the season with a big game the following week. On the other hand, with a new offense being implemented I'm not sure they have that luxury.

I"ll be most interested in the defense. I expect them to play with a lot more force and attitude.

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Much truth here. I do think it's possible Michigan could have a defense between the 60th and 70th best, if things go well. top 50? I don't think that's going to happen with these players. 2013, I think, for a possible top 40 D, 2014 for a top 20 or better. But this year, I'll be happy with top 60.

I just know what Mattison can do with defenses, he will squeeze every ounce of talent out of these boys, and they will attack the ball. Mattison was the most impressive hire IMO, looking forward to watching the defense more than the offense this year...

That is probably because Denard will take care of the offense. Good college football player trying to become great. This will be a fun year.

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Part of me doesn't expect a lot out of the offense this game. It's pretty typical to not open the play book to start the season with a big game the following week. On the other hand, with a new offense being implemented I'm not sure they have that luxury.

I"ll be most interested in the defense. I expect them to play with a lot more force and attitude.

Honestly, given WMU's offensive players returning, I doubt they'll have a choice but to unveil the offense, at least for awhile. I'm thinking of something like a 42-24 win.

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I'm thinking of something like a 42-24 win.

Chicken Turtle Man disagrees. Honestly, I think the defense comes out and plays very well in week one.

How so, and will that keep up .. will become the debate.

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So, is this the best team Michigan has had since 2007? I think it probably is. Looking at the offense, I don't see any reason to expect a drop off other than the change in scheme, but I think the added experience makes up for that.

On defense, it's easy to point to last year and assume it is going to be terrible. However, I think there is something to be said for having so many returning starters. Now, we could look at the guys returning and their performance last year and say that is a bad thing, but i think just being a year older and stronger goes a long way. The coaching is obviously improved. There are no longer any freshmen starters, and only a handful on the two deep. The depth is said to be a concern, and it probably is, but is it really that much morse than an average defense? I honestly don't know. Regardless, the defense will clearly be better.

Overall, this is a better team than last year. The schedule is easier. A lot of crazy stuff can happen in such a short season, but I think this year might just be decent enough that it won't cause severe pain like the last few.

I'm tired of being optimistic. I just want to be content. I think this team can do that.

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38-10 is the final score I am predicting. Michigans defense is going to be looking to make a statement, all they have heard for a year is how bad they are/were. I am pumped for Saturday to see what the new team looks like under Hoke and Co.

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This the fourth year in a row we get to see a "new" team. RR year 1 was the dawn of a new era. RR year 2 we finally had the right QB. RR year 3 we seriously finally have the right QB. Now we finally have gone back to the good old days.

I just wish it was Saturday right now.

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I am cooking out and drinking all day Saturday, finally that smell of CFB back in the air.

I will probably pass out shortly after the UM game.

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I'll be heading to the UTSA inaugural game at 1pm, DVR'ing the UM game, and watching whatever night game comes on. I cannot wait for Saturday. This is my version of Christmass morning.

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How do we find out which channel the game is going to be on?

I need to DVR the game in Kansas City, and would like to know the channel to set it on.

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How do we find out which channel the game is going to be on?

I need to DVR the game in Kansas City, and would like to know the channel to set it on.

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/news/story?page=coveragemaps2011

That is the ESPN coverage map for 2011. It is blank right now, but I think they release it on Wednesday usually. So keep checking back.

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I will up near Gaylord at the family cabin during this game... I haven't been there in probably 6 or 7 years, but I know that a TV has been installed since I was last there.

Whether that means that there is free box up there that gets 2, 4, 7, etc. or if it is a Comcast package I don't know... I'm hoping for an ABC game to eliminate all doubt about watching the game.

My Predictions

Michigan: 52

Western Michigan: 17

Denard throws for 283 yards and 4 TD's while running for 114 yards and a TD.

Brady Hoke is seen in the 4th quarter yelling at a defensive player who blew his assaignment and gave up a TD... Every Michigan fan smiles and claps at this.

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