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GDT: #18 Michigan at Penn State 10/12/2013

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With as bad as Gardner and Michigan have played (to mostly inferior competition) through 6 games, with as many mistakes as they've made, to be 5-1 is an absolute miracle.

IMO, it is a shame. The talent on this team doesn't equal the output IMO. We've had too many high end recruits the past 3 years to have an anemic offense and, at times, poor defense. I'm starting to get worried about Hoke and company. It seems we've taken BIG steps back the past two seasons since his 2011 season. (although it is hard to complain about a 5-1 start)

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IMO, it is a shame. The talent on this team doesn't equal the output IMO. We've had too many high end recruits the past 3 years to have an anemic offense and, at times, poor defense. I'm starting to get worried about Hoke and company. It seems we've taken BIG steps back the past two seasons since his 2011 season. (although it is hard to complain about a 5-1 start)

Sometimes you sink your fate with a QB and you get burned. Garnder is a phenomenal athlete and by all accounts, incredibly intelligent off the field. He is just proving to be dumb as a box of rocks when it comes to not making mistakes ON the football field. Don't get it. The delay of game in the 4th quarter was about as stupid as it gets.

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Sometimes you sink your fate with a QB and you get burned. Garnder is a phenomenal athlete and by all accounts, incredibly intelligent off the field. He is just proving to be dumb as a box of rocks when it comes to not making mistakes ON the football field. Don't get it. The delay of game in the 4th quarter was about as stupid as it gets.

You're right. The guy graduated in three years, but makes such simple mistakes on the field. Staring down receivers, no pocket awareness, the delay of game (although that is on Hoke just as much). I don't trust him, and it sure looks like the coaches don't either.

But he really didn't play that badly in the second half. He was not the reason why they lost tonight.

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Brendan Gibbons would have better karma to make field goals if he didn't rape people.

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This is one of the most pathetic losses in Michigan history. Right up there with Appalachian State and Toledo.

So, Michigan wanted a 'Michigan Man' to go back to the good old 'Smash Mouth' Big 10 Football. Here's the thing: No one else in the Big 10 does that anymore. Ohio State? Nope. Wisconsin? Nope. Northwestern? Nope. Nebraska? Nope. Michigan State? Sort of...what an offense to emulate.

Then on top of that, you have the tough, big man focused, power run coach, giving us the worst offensive line we've had in decades. Despite inheriting two all conference level (or better in Lewan's case) tackles. Oh, and the defensive line is garbage too. Yet despite this, they run the same awful power plays up the middle over and over, playing to the the team's weaknesses. The calls are also immensely predictable, as if simply being bad wasn't enough.

Then you add in the other classic part of being a 'Michigan Man'. Being a loser. They play to lose the game. The Lloyd Carr years were festooned with punts from inside the 40, runs up the middle to wind the clock, and prevent defenses.

My first take on Hoke was that he was in fact, a much better coach than I thought when he was hired. He has frequently shown a willingness to go for it and play aggressively. This has done a lot to make up for the team's mind numbing offense since he took over. And yet today, every chance they had to win the game was ignored. 3rd and inches and they essentially take a knee and kick. Is that 'power' football? Pathetic. Pathetic. Pathetic.

Penn State is coming off of a CHILD RAPE SCANDAL and they hired a forward thinking NFL mind. Ohio State's beloved coach had to leave in disgrace, and they hired one of the best coaches in CFB. Wisconsin took a shot on a small school guy with an offensive mind.

Michigan got Brady Hoke. They got the coach who plays to lose. Excellent. I'll give him this, he seems like a really nice guy and he recruits well, maybe when he has 4 full years of recruits he'll have the talent to play the worst strategy in football: Trying to win purely by being better than the other team, not outsmarting them, tricking them, or doing anything to break tendencies. Until then, it's going to be fun.

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Sometimes you sink your fate with a QB and you get burned. Garnder is a phenomenal athlete and by all accounts, incredibly intelligent off the field. He is just proving to be dumb as a box of rocks when it comes to not making mistakes ON the football field. Don't get it. The delay of game in the 4th quarter was about as stupid as it gets.

Good thing Michigan's power running game is working well, really takes the power off of Gardner when a team with 180 pound defensive ends stuffs you for 1 yard per carry.

edit: And Michigan has played 0 good teams this season. They could easily be 1-5 if they had a vaguely threatening schedule after CMU.

Edited by pyrotigers

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Hoke's honeymoon is essentially over, and it looks like he's another Lloyd Carr with some updated views on football. It's a hell of a lot better than RichRod and his clown show, but still so much less than what Michigan is capable of.

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Hoke's honeymoon is essentially over, and it looks like he's another Lloyd Carr with some updated views on football. It's a hell of a lot better than RichRod and his clown show, but still so much less than what Michigan is capable of.

Hoke will be here a while. I'm not 100% sold that he is the wrong man for the job just yet, but I'm definitely leaning that way. Fortunately he has been a heck of a recruiter so far, and Michigan should have a full cabinet of talent for at least the next 3 years if he can keep the current class from defecting. I'm sure Hoke will start to feel some pressure after today's loss. This team could easily end the season 7-5 or worse. That would be a tragedy after starting out 5-0. Hoke's seat will definitely warm up if he loses half his B1G games, and to Ohio Sate.

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Hoke is incompetent at clock management and allocation of timeouts. He's aggressive in going for it on 4th down usually and that's great but he is oblivious about managing the clock properly and leaves us vulnerable to what happened last night.

His track record and qualifications probably wouldn't have got him hired at other high-level programs. Incompetence on the level of John L Smith by not calling a simple TO to prevent a crucial delay of game penalty along with mind-numbing cowardly play calling in clinching drive scenarios doesn't add much confidence.

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Hoke's honeymoon is essentially over, and it looks like he's another Lloyd Carr with some updated views on football. It's a hell of a lot better than RichRod and his clown show, but still so much less than what Michigan is capable of.

What is Michigan capable of? I'm a grad and love the Wolverines but I have never had a sense that they were about more than competing for conference championships with whatever spoils come with that in terms of national rankings. They are not a program that has traditionally pushed the limits in the way USC or Ohio State have in recent years, they don't over recruit like the SEC powers.

I am not sure what people expected this season. They lost more than half their OL and their depth consists of 2 Hoke classes and walk-ons. Their TEs are young, they lost their projected starting WR to injury and their QB had, what, 5 starts under his belt going into the season?

The team bounced back the second half in a way the naysayers wouldn't have predicted. Gardner cleaned up his mistakes and played his heart out. The defense made some huge plays. There was no single mistake that cost them the game. The clock management was bad but had they pinned Penn State back inside the ten it would have been forgotten. On the two big passes they were inches away from an interception on the first and a knock down on the second. And wasn't that a freshman in the center of both? They should have won in OT, Gibbons had the game on his foot within a range he's been reliable. They were 0 for 4 or 5 on the plays that could have decided the game. And that after all of the turnovers and poor play in the first half.

I think this game will go on to define the program in a different way than those who seem to think it has exposed Hoke as mediocre. He knows where this game was lost.

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Michigan has recruited as well as anyone the last few years, and Hoke didn't actually inherit a bad team from Rich Rod (BCS bowl win his first year).

Gardner was a top QB recruit, they have a stable of top RB recruits, a stable of top TE recruits, a top 10 pick at OT, an all conference player at OT, and a huge group of top recruits at OL. The defense is littered with talent as well. The only areas where you could probably say they're lacking is WR and DL. But, the problem on offense isn't so much the WRs as that they can't run the ball or pass block, and Hoke is supposed to be a DL coach, so you'd think he'd get the most out of the limited talent there.

They're certainly more talented than any of the teams they've played so far this year. I don't see that as an excuse at all. They've simply underperformed dramatically.

I still have a lot of confidence in Mattison, and outside of today's awful decision making I don't think Hoke is THAT bad of a coach, but I've had it with Borges. Their offense is uninteresting, predictable, and continually relies on the biggest weaknesses of the team to play well. It's all well and good to say 'we have to block better' 'they have to get the job done' 'It's Michigan fer god's sake!' and all of that stuff, but eventually you have to recognize that it's not happening and do something else.

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Hoke's honeymoon is essentially over, and it looks like he's another Lloyd Carr with some updated views on football. It's a hell of a lot better than RichRod and his clown show, but still so much less than what Michigan is capable of.

This is probably true. Which is probably fine in the end, but I had hoped for more.

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I think the WRs are definitely our biggest problem on offense, or at least tied with the interior OL.

Gallon is good, Funchess looks good, Dileo is fine. They basically run on every first down and they can't pass block. That puts the passing game in a tough spot. And they still almost won this awful game due to big passing plays. So of course in overtime they just ran the ball every play and kicked.

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Michigan has recruited as well as anyone the last few years, and Hoke didn't actually inherit a bad team from Rich Rod (BCS bowl win his first year).

Gardner was a top QB recruit, they have a stable of top RB recruits, a stable of top TE recruits, a top 10 pick at OT, an all conference player at OT, and a huge group of top recruits at OL. The defense is littered with talent as well. The only areas where you could probably say they're lacking is WR and DL. But, the problem on offense isn't so much the WRs as that they can't run the ball or pass block, and Hoke is supposed to be a DL coach, so you'd think he'd get the most out of the limited talent there.

They're certainly more talented than any of the teams they've played so far this year. I don't see that as an excuse at all. They've simply underperformed dramatically.

I still have a lot of confidence in Mattison, and outside of today's awful decision making I don't think Hoke is THAT bad of a coach, but I've had it with Borges. Their offense is uninteresting, predictable, and continually relies on the biggest weaknesses of the team to play well. It's all well and good to say 'we have to block better' 'they have to get the job done' 'It's Michigan fer god's sake!' and all of that stuff, but eventually you have to recognize that it's not happening and do something else.

I think that's an unfair assessment. Hoke has two full years of recruiting and yes he's recruited well but that isn't going to begin to show up until next season. They started the game yesterday with a freshman, sophomore and walk-on on the OL, a sophomore FB and TE (or freshman with Butts). Yes, there's talent and if you plugged any one of these guys into a well oiled system they would probably be more effective. Add someone like Green to a team with an experienced OL and what do you think he'd do? That's not the case though, they are being thrown into much tougher circumstances and being led by a QB who doesn't even have a season's worth of experience. On the other side of the ball they have the same problem. More than half their starters are sophomores as are most of the rotation guys (if not freshmen).

You are over-estimating what he inherited. Mattison did well his first year with a couple of Carr recruits on the DL but with too few exceptions this team gets very little from Rodriguez recruits. Hoke inherited an OL with absolutely no depth and look at the LB and S depth.

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Gallon is good, Funchess looks good, Dileo is fine. They basically run on every first down and they can't pass block. That puts the passing game in a tough spot. And they still almost won this awful game due to big passing plays. So of course in overtime they just ran the ball every play and kicked.

Gallon's pretty good, but they just don't have any size on the outside. I think it really limits them.

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I think that's an unfair assessment. Hoke has two full years of recruiting and yes he's recruited well but that isn't going to begin to show up until next season. They started the game yesterday with a freshman, sophomore and walk-on on the OL, a sophomore FB and TE (or freshman with Butts). Yes, there's talent and if you plugged any one of these guys into a well oiled system they would probably be more effective. Add someone like Green to a team with an experienced OL and what do you think he'd do? That's not the case though, they are being thrown into much tougher circumstances and being led by a QB who doesn't even have a season's worth of experience. On the other side of the ball they have the same problem. More than half their starters are sophomores as are most of the rotation guys (if not freshmen).

You are over-estimating what he inherited. Mattison did well his first year with a couple of Carr recruits on the DL but with too few exceptions this team gets very little from Rodriguez recruits. Hoke inherited an OL with absolutely no depth and look at the LB and S depth.

This is pretty spot on.

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The clock management was bad but had they pinned Penn State back inside the ten it would have been forgotten.

No way. That was one of the more inexcusable coaching blunders that I can recall at U of M.

Hoke delegates and is a CEO type coach. He needs someone on the staff or a grad assistant who can help him manage the clock at the end of games and allocate timeouts to prevent that from ever happening again. That was beyond incompetence and its been a flaw of his during his whole tenure and talked about on places like MgoBlog. It finally helped cost them a game when a more skilled game manager would have been able to put the game away for Michigan.

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I think that's an unfair assessment. Hoke has two full years of recruiting and yes he's recruited well but that isn't going to begin to show up until next season. They started the game yesterday with a freshman, sophomore and walk-on on the OL, a sophomore FB and TE (or freshman with Butts). Yes, there's talent and if you plugged any one of these guys into a well oiled system they would probably be more effective. Add someone like Green to a team with an experienced OL and what do you think he'd do? That's not the case though, they are being thrown into much tougher circumstances and being led by a QB who doesn't even have a season's worth of experience. On the other side of the ball they have the same problem. More than half their starters are sophomores as are most of the rotation guys (if not freshmen).

You are over-estimating what he inherited. Mattison did well his first year with a couple of Carr recruits on the DL but with too few exceptions this team gets very little from Rodriguez recruits. Hoke inherited an OL with absolutely no depth and look at the LB and S depth.

And yet they've gotten perfectly fine performance at LB and S. Mattison is a good coach. Rodriguez definitely did a terrible job recruiting o-line, but Hoke still inherited Molk, Schofield, and Lewan from him. Given his success (ratings wise anyway) recruiting top o-linemen, you'd think some of the redshirt freshman would be ready to play. As far as I can tell, none of them are even close.

I'm not expecting them to have an incredible national championship O-Line. I'm expecting them to have an O-Line that doesn't get dominated by Akron, Uconn, and a scholarship reduction hit Penn State. That's just sad. It's John Ferrara starting at OG sad. And they're probably playing worse than that group did.

I think we're just mixing up expectations here, I do not think Michigan is so supremely talented that they should win the Big 10 or roll into the National Title game. I completely agree that Hoke needs another year or two to rebuild strength at certain positions. However, I think they are plenty strong enough to dominate a bad MAC team, possibly the worst team in Division 1 (Uconn), Minnesota, and Penn State. There is just no excuse for how bad they've played this year.

They were better last year, they were better in every non Nick Sheridan Rich Rod year. The regression when they're supposed to be getting better is what's concerning.

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And yet they've gotten perfectly fine performance at LB and S. Mattison is a good coach. Rodriguez definitely did a terrible job recruiting o-line, but Hoke still inherited Molk, Schofield, and Lewan from him. Given his success (ratings wise anyway) recruiting top o-linemen, you'd think some of the redshirt freshman would be ready to play. As far as I can tell, none of them are even close.

I'm not expecting them to have an incredible national championship O-Line. I'm expecting them to have an O-Line that doesn't get dominated by Akron, Uconn, and a scholarship reduction hit Penn State. That's just sad. It's John Ferrara starting at OG sad. And they're probably playing worse than that group did.

I think we're just mixing up expectations here, I do not think Michigan is so supremely talented that they should win the Big 10 or roll into the National Title game. I completely agree that Hoke needs another year or two to rebuild strength at certain positions. However, I think they are plenty strong enough to dominate a bad MAC team, possibly the worst team in Division 1 (Uconn), Minnesota, and Penn State. There is just no excuse for how bad they've played this year.

They were better last year, they were better in every non Nick Sheridan Rich Rod year. The regression when they're supposed to be getting better is what's concerning.

I guess I expected them to be about where they are this year. Sure, I would have expected some of those wins to be more convincing but record-wise they are about where I thought they would be. I oddly expected Gardner to be better but the offense to struggle primarily because of the transition in schemes. And I thought the OL would be sketchy with 3 new starters.

I get what you are saying about the defense and Mattison has done a good job of working around youth and inexperience. I don't think it's near what it will be though.

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I guess I expected them to be about where they are this year. Sure, I would have expected some of those wins to be more convincing but record-wise they are about where I thought they would be.

I think the point being made is Michigan is tremendously lucky to be 5-1.

Or, perhaps more accurately, they are not playing well, and the concerns around that moving forward are much, much larger than being 5-1.

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