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I offer thoughts on THE GAME

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1 minute ago, lordstanley said:

Doesn't help that there's virtually nothing else on the Michigan-area sports landscape to look forward to. I guess if you're into college basketball the Spartans and Wolverines might make a run for the Final Four. But the Lions ain't making the playoffs. The Red Wings ain't making the playoffs. If the Pistons even make it, it sounds like they wont' be going anywhere. Tigers ain't making the playoffs.  I guess the Kronk gym isn't around anymore to at least give us a big  Vegas fight to look forward to, right?

This is true. Hopefully college hoops provides some distraction. The wings are getting somewhat closer to a 500 team, but I'd prefer they just tank it to get more balls in the draft lottery. 

When all else fails, there's always the glory of mobile phone video games....

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On a lighter note, LSU's head coach was treated to a Gatorade bath 5 minutes ago when it looked like an interception had sewed up a win. Play was overturned because the A&M QB was down. A&M then went 70 yards in 30 seconds to tie it and we're off to OT. LSU coach looks wet.

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After having time to cool off and be just as pissed I put this game on many people. The quarterback even when the receivers were catching the ball they were making great catches on badly thrown balls. So many times a guy would be running open only to have to stop for the ball or reach backward.  

The coaches. Osu has been gashed on outside runs all year. What do they do? Run up the middle, Run up the middle, over and over. 

Defense not putting in zones when they were doing crossing routes. 

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4 hours ago, Aaron said:

After having time to cool off and be just as pissed I put this game on many people. The quarterback even when the receivers were catching the ball they were making great catches on badly thrown balls. So many times a guy would be running open only to have to stop for the ball or reach backward.  

The coaches. Osu has been gashed on outside runs all year. What do they do? Run up the middle, Run up the middle, over and over. 

Defense not putting in zones when they were doing crossing routes. 

It is hard to imagine saying this but OSU blew up Don Brown's over aggressive style.  Couple that with two rushers who probably were at 50% in Gary and Winovich and you don't get to the QB.  Might have been refs eating whistles too. 

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I got chucked out of the Michigan Chat group on facebook for being critical yesterday.   Pretty typical of Michigan fans.  Can't take it.  I'm just done with the whole thing.     What a bunch of weaklings.   Can't stand hearing the truth.    

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13 minutes ago, Motor City Sonics said:

I got chucked out of the Michigan Chat group on facebook for being critical yesterday.   Pretty typical of Michigan fans.  Can't take it.  I'm just done with the whole thing.     What a bunch of weaklings.   Can't stand hearing the truth.    

I'm a Michigan fan, and I'm as critical of them as anyone.  What they did yesterday is indefensible.

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15 hours ago, hail2mich said:

Dumpster fire program? It was a horrific loss today. Maybe their worst ever. But come on. Do you remember ANYTHING from 2008-2014? How would you describe those years if this is a dumpster fire? 

I get expectations are sky high at Michigan, but good lord.

Yes, I remember those pre-Harbaugh dunpster-fire years very well.  I also remember that Harbaugh was hired to put out the fire (and paid Nick Saban money to do it).  And yesterday it was raging out of control, hotter and smellier than it was even in Rich Rod's three-win season. 

 

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People are just being way too critical on Harbaugh.   Yeah it sucks that they keep getting embarrassed by OSU but OSU is just a better program and has been for 20 years.      People like to bring up the glory days with Carr but aside from the National Championship year they lost 2+ games every year under him with majority being 3+ and OSU had the incompetent John Cooper then and MSU was garbage. 

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For me, this game is 100% on the coaches. And mostly the offensive coaches. I realize, that may sound odd given that OSU scored 62, so let me explain:

Defensively, this is basically the second game Don Brown's defense has performed poorly in 3 years. The PSU game last year was largely McSorely, Barkley, and the PSU WRs just owning us with amazing play, so really, this is the first game where I've felt we just got whipped regardless of the opponent.

But, even that was largely personnel based to me, namely two things:

The D-Line got OWNED by Ohio State's O-Line. The entire plan was to rattle Haskins. He's an amazing QB, maybe the best in the country, when he has a clean pocket, and terrible when under pressure. I don't think he was hit once the entire game (maybe one Dwumfour inside rush, in which we committed DPI anyway). Winovich was probably hurt, I understand not putting Uche out much given our history of OSU's running game paving us under, but Rashan Gary. I love the guy, he plays harder than anyone, he's smart, he's a great representative of the university, but his 3 years here are pretty much a total bust to me. Maybe also due to injury, but what a disappointing career.

#2 Brandon Watson and I THINK the safeties. It seemed like Long and Hill were solid as usual, and I didn't see Thomas get targeted much when Long went out, but obviously they were picking on Watson. I think this blew up Brown's plan as Watson had been fantastic in man coverage all year, but, OSU's #3 and #4 WRs are also far more athletic and talented than any he'd seen this year, should have anticipated it. It also seemed like the adjustment early in the 2nd half was for the safeties to step up, and that didn't work. Kinnel has always been a liability in coverage imo

But, back to my main complaint, the offense.

If you watch college football, if you watch the NFL, you can see where things are going. Offenses are based on spreading the field, getting athletes in space, and frankly, making the game easy. If you watch the Big 12, if you watch Alabama, if you watch Ohio State, if you watch the Chiefs or Rams on Sunday, they take a talented strong armed QB (check for both teams in this game), they spread the field, and they let him throw guys open for big gains. OSU killed us with this, lots of teams do this. Michigan has the WRs and TEs and QB to do this. But they don't.

They line up like it's 1985 and try to out execute. And despite scoring a lot of points in this game, it's pretty clear how devastating that is. Look at how easy most of OSU's big passing plays were, compare that to Michigan. Two touchdowns were frankly amazing throws and catches by Patterson/Collins into tight coverage, just asking a guy to win 1 on 1 on basically a fade. Entirely a play based on out executing, no tricks, no misdirection, no picks, no help for either player. The Gentry "drop" in the end zone, basically required him to beat two defenders and then Patterson to make a perfect throw. Patterson made the throw, but the defender made a good play to knock it out. Again, an incredibly difficult play.

One of the touchdowns late was basically Nico Collins beating two defenders on a jump ball. Low percentage difficult play. The ONLY play I saw the entire game that felt like it tricked the defense (and OSU's low IQ defense should have been targeted this way all game) was the passing TD to Evans, which coincidentally was also the only wide open easy play we got all game. Our offense makes things hard on ourselves, it's why we bog down and kick field goals all the time.

Despite the defenses horrible play, this was imo, a winnable game. Even with it being a huge beatdown, we ended up losing by 23. It doesn't take that many improvements on offense to close a lot of that gap. The blocked punt and the Patterson INT on third down basically gave OSU 14 points. If Michigan drives and scores on those possessions instead, it's a completely different game.

We probably lose anyway, because the defense wasn't stopping OSU, especially after Bush and Long went out (also no Solomon all game was a killer imo, our only DT besides Dwumfour with any real talent), but the coaches put our players in a position where it's all on them to execute and win the game. No schematic advantages, nothing comes easy. It has mostly worked on D because the D-Line is talented enough, and the corners are incredibly well coached in recent years, but on offense it really never works against the good teams.

Final thought, I also think Harbaugh bought into the idea that Michigan was the better team and could come out, line up, out execute, and win. This is idiotic. Look at last year, Michigan out coached OSU and could have won with a competent QB, they had all kinds of new plays that weren't on tape that had guys running wide open, they were throwing on early downs early, they had OSU's defense completely off balance, only O'Korn being bad prevented an upset win. This year? Nothing. They lined up, they ran on the early downs, they offered nothing. OSU's linebackers didn't have to think, they just shot gaps and blew up plays. Instead of making things easy for our offense, we made it easy for their defense. Terrible coaching.

I'm confident in Don Brown's ability to improve the defense, he's come out and shut down OSU 2 out of 3 years (last year, the defense collapsed late when it was obvious our QB couldn't do anything and they'd been on the field forever, but they were great before that), I'm not confident at all in our offense ever being good enough to compete with the elite teams.

Nick Saban realized dinosaur football was dead and now they spread it out and Tua is going to win the heisman running away. Michigan has to learn this lesson or we're Wisconsin/MSU forever. A solid program, but not a title contender, not someone who can beat OSU. Urban Meyer is 81-9 at OSU. He basically loses one game a year. They're the closest thing to Alabama outside of Alabama. And you're not going to beat them by "out talenting" and "out executing" them. It's just never going to happen.

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6 hours ago, pyrotigers said:

For me, this game is 100% on the coaches. And mostly the offensive coaches. I realize, that may sound odd given that OSU scored 62, so let me explain:

Defensively, this is basically the second game Don Brown's defense has performed poorly in 3 years. The PSU game last year was largely McSorely, Barkley, and the PSU WRs just owning us with amazing play, so really, this is the first game where I've felt we just got whipped regardless of the opponent.

But, even that was largely personnel based to me, namely two things:

The D-Line got OWNED by Ohio State's O-Line. The entire plan was to rattle Haskins. He's an amazing QB, maybe the best in the country, when he has a clean pocket, and terrible when under pressure. I don't think he was hit once the entire game (maybe one Dwumfour inside rush, in which we committed DPI anyway). Winovich was probably hurt, I understand not putting Uche out much given our history of OSU's running game paving us under, but Rashan Gary. I love the guy, he plays harder than anyone, he's smart, he's a great representative of the university, but his 3 years here are pretty much a total bust to me. Maybe also due to injury, but what a disappointing career.

#2 Brandon Watson and I THINK the safeties. It seemed like Long and Hill were solid as usual, and I didn't see Thomas get targeted much when Long went out, but obviously they were picking on Watson. I think this blew up Brown's plan as Watson had been fantastic in man coverage all year, but, OSU's #3 and #4 WRs are also far more athletic and talented than any he'd seen this year, should have anticipated it. It also seemed like the adjustment early in the 2nd half was for the safeties to step up, and that didn't work. Kinnel has always been a liability in coverage imo

But, back to my main complaint, the offense.

If you watch college football, if you watch the NFL, you can see where things are going. Offenses are based on spreading the field, getting athletes in space, and frankly, making the game easy. If you watch the Big 12, if you watch Alabama, if you watch Ohio State, if you watch the Chiefs or Rams on Sunday, they take a talented strong armed QB (check for both teams in this game), they spread the field, and they let him throw guys open for big gains. OSU killed us with this, lots of teams do this. Michigan has the WRs and TEs and QB to do this. But they don't.

They line up like it's 1985 and try to out execute. And despite scoring a lot of points in this game, it's pretty clear how devastating that is. Look at how easy most of OSU's big passing plays were, compare that to Michigan. Two touchdowns were frankly amazing throws and catches by Patterson/Collins into tight coverage, just asking a guy to win 1 on 1 on basically a fade. Entirely a play based on out executing, no tricks, no misdirection, no picks, no help for either player. The Gentry "drop" in the end zone, basically required him to beat two defenders and then Patterson to make a perfect throw. Patterson made the throw, but the defender made a good play to knock it out. Again, an incredibly difficult play.

One of the touchdowns late was basically Nico Collins beating two defenders on a jump ball. Low percentage difficult play. The ONLY play I saw the entire game that felt like it tricked the defense (and OSU's low IQ defense should have been targeted this way all game) was the passing TD to Evans, which coincidentally was also the only wide open easy play we got all game. Our offense makes things hard on ourselves, it's why we bog down and kick field goals all the time.

Despite the defenses horrible play, this was imo, a winnable game. Even with it being a huge beatdown, we ended up losing by 23. It doesn't take that many improvements on offense to close a lot of that gap. The blocked punt and the Patterson INT on third down basically gave OSU 14 points. If Michigan drives and scores on those possessions instead, it's a completely different game.

We probably lose anyway, because the defense wasn't stopping OSU, especially after Bush and Long went out (also no Solomon all game was a killer imo, our only DT besides Dwumfour with any real talent), but the coaches put our players in a position where it's all on them to execute and win the game. No schematic advantages, nothing comes easy. It has mostly worked on D because the D-Line is talented enough, and the corners are incredibly well coached in recent years, but on offense it really never works against the good teams.

Final thought, I also think Harbaugh bought into the idea that Michigan was the better team and could come out, line up, out execute, and win. This is idiotic. Look at last year, Michigan out coached OSU and could have won with a competent QB, they had all kinds of new plays that weren't on tape that had guys running wide open, they were throwing on early downs early, they had OSU's defense completely off balance, only O'Korn being bad prevented an upset win. This year? Nothing. They lined up, they ran on the early downs, they offered nothing. OSU's linebackers didn't have to think, they just shot gaps and blew up plays. Instead of making things easy for our offense, we made it easy for their defense. Terrible coaching.

I'm confident in Don Brown's ability to improve the defense, he's come out and shut down OSU 2 out of 3 years (last year, the defense collapsed late when it was obvious our QB couldn't do anything and they'd been on the field forever, but they were great before that), I'm not confident at all in our offense ever being good enough to compete with the elite teams.

Nick Saban realized dinosaur football was dead and now they spread it out and Tua is going to win the heisman running away. Michigan has to learn this lesson or we're Wisconsin/MSU forever. A solid program, but not a title contender, not someone who can beat OSU. Urban Meyer is 81-9 at OSU. He basically loses one game a year. They're the closest thing to Alabama outside of Alabama. And you're not going to beat them by "out talenting" and "out executing" them. It's just never going to happen.

I'm not disagreeing with you necessarily. I think you make some valid points, particularly on the offensive side of the ball. Harbaugh has to find an offensive coordinator who can actually run something other than 1986 techmo-bowl plays in terms of difficulty level. Pep Hamilton is not that coach. 3 yards and a cloud of dust doesn't work anymore because there are too many skilled athletes to stop it now, particularly at linebacker and on the D line.

As far as the defense, go back and watch the tape of this game. Or any other game OSU plays. Their O line holds - all the time...all game long- particularly the interior of their line. And the big ten has historically just watched it happen...over and over. Couple that with, as noted, our two best pass rushers not being 100% and voila, you have the perfect pocket that the present day iteration of eric hipple could even throw 5 touchdowns out of. As vindication for this premise, go google the number of OSU offensive lineman who have been much of anything in the NFL. Outside of orlando pace, you won't find anybody whose pictures aren't taken in black and white. Why? Maybe because all that holding is actually called in the NFL (at least much more often than college). The other thing is, go google NFL QBs from OSU. You won't find anyone that was really worth a damn at that position either. Why? NFL quarterbacks simply aren't afforded the luxury of sitting back in the pocket for 5-7 seconds to pick apart defenses that are full of slow DBs. That just doesn't happen with any regularity in the NFL. 

Harbaugh is taking a **** ton of heat for this one, and rightly so. In my view, he needs to stop wasting time on European trips and put more effort into being cutting edge in play calling- particularly on the offensive side of the ball. Having said that, he needs athletes to do that with, something he hasn't had at QB until recently. That is also on him- he needs to find a way to steer some more 5 stars to ann arbor.

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I agree OSU has gotten away with lots of holding over the years, but I think Haskins is legitimately good, and otherwise, we have OSU's O-Line coach, he should be teaching our guys to hold just as much. It's not like Michigan gets called for many holdings either, even in the years when our o-lines were terrible. I just think the Big 10 doesn't enforce the holding rule very much

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53 minutes ago, pyrotigers said:

I agree OSU has gotten away with lots of holding over the years, but I think Haskins is legitimately good, and otherwise, we have OSU's O-Line coach, he should be teaching our guys to hold just as much. It's not like Michigan gets called for many holdings either, even in the years when our o-lines were terrible. I just think the Big 10 doesn't enforce the holding rule very much

Big ten officials are notoriously bad, this is true. 

I can't say Haskins is any good until I see him throw behind a line that isn't holding so much that it literally forms a sealed off wall. Once he has some pressure in his face he may end up like the littany of other OSU QBs who were complete busts in the NFL. 

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22 hours ago, lordstanley said:

Doesn't help that there's virtually nothing else on the Michigan-area sports landscape to look forward to. I guess if you're into college basketball the Spartans and Wolverines might make a run for the Final Four. But the Lions ain't making the playoffs. The Red Wings ain't making the playoffs. If the Pistons even make it, it sounds like they wont' be going anywhere. Tigers ain't making the playoffs.  I guess the Kronk gym isn't around anymore to at least give us a big  Vegas fight to look forward to, right?

I envy cities like Boston who seemingly win atleast 1 championship every year.    I was too young to remember the 84 Tigers, was only like 8 and 9 for the Bad Boys and have never been a hockey fan so in my lifetime I really have only truly experienced 2 championships from my teams.   Michigan in 97 and the Pistons in 2004.   Kinda sad when I think about it.  

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8 minutes ago, RandyMarsh said:

 Michigan in 97 

You mean the Michigan team that went 12-0 and barely beat the #8 ranked team that was co-champs with the Nebraska team that went 13-0 and decimated the #3 ranked team?

Yeah, "national championship". Sure. 

1948. 

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3 minutes ago, Biff Mayhem said:

You mean the Michigan team that went 12-0 and barely beat the #8 ranked team that was co-champs with the Nebraska team that went 13-0 and decimated the #3 ranked team?

Yeah, "national championship". Sure. 

1948. 

You mean the NEbraska team that needed an absolute fluke miracle play to beat a garbage Missouri team?  Or the NEbraska team that only played 4 ranked teams all season while Michigan played 8?  Or the Nebraska team that barely beat Colorado while Michigan beat them by 4 touchdowns?   

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Just now, RandyMarsh said:

You mean the NEbraska team that needed an absolute fluke miracle play to beat a garbage Missouri team?  Or the NEbraska team that only played 4 ranked teams all season while Michigan played 8?  Or the Nebraska team that barely beat Colorado while Michigan beat them by 4 touchdowns?   

Or the Nebraska team gifted a championship by a bitter coach over the Heisman?

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1 hour ago, RandyMarsh said:

I envy cities like Boston who seemingly win atleast 1 championship every year.    I was too young to remember the 84 Tigers, was only like 8 and 9 for the Bad Boys and have never been a hockey fan so in my lifetime I really have only truly experienced 2 championships from my teams.   Michigan in 97 and the Pistons in 2004.   Kinda sad when I think about it.  

You might want to do some more historical reading on Boston's championship history. I think you'll find it hasn't always been that way. ?

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We had a great long run as general sports fans

 

1984 Tigers win World Series

1987 Tigers in playoffs (when only four teams made them)

1987 - 90  Pistons, 2 Championships,  4 straight conference finals

1989  Michigan Basketball

1994 - Wings in finals

1997   Michigan wins co-national title (and virtually nothing since)

1997, 98  Wings win Stanley Cup

2000 Michigan State basketball wins title

2004/05  Pistons - 2 finals, 1 title

2006 Tigers, make World Series

2008/09 Red Wings - 2 finals, 1 title

2009  Michigan State makes basketball final in home state.

2012 Tigers, make World Series

2013  Tigers come close to World Series

2013  Michigan basketball in the final  (loses to team of criminals)

2015  Michigan State makes college football playoff

2018  Michigan basketball in the final

That's a pretty good run

But now................there is little to get excited about.  Maybe the college basketball teams, but they wouldn't beat the better teams in a championship.   Other than that being a sports fan in SE Michigan right now sucks and it's going to for quite some time.   Last drought we had like this was the 70s.  

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Here's the thing for Michigan fans and they'll hate hearing this - especially the older ones, but Rich Rodriguez was right.  He was doing exactly what needed to be done but the blue hairs and the Michigan mafia didn't like him shaking things up.    yeah, he could have been better with the defense (he had the athletes, but not the right scheme), but if the idiots who freaked out over opening up the offense had just let him do his thing,  Michigan would be better off at this point.   3 yards and a cloud of dust doesn't work anymore.  It's like a video game now.  Stop fighting it and go with it.      It's not 1984.     

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