That's right. The season may just be over for the overrated, poorly coached, Michigan Wolverines. Don't give them any credit either. Replacing a half dozen NFL caliber players on offense is something any college team should be able to. A new coaching staff always makes a smooth transition right?
Well, I'm done being sarcastic. But to be honest, I'm absolutely disgusted with the experts, and many other people who have proclaimed the Michigan Program a failure, and Rich Rodriguez an idiot and a fool.
I'll be honest with you, I wasn't all that excited about his initial hiring. Yeah, he is a hell of a coach, but one reason I'm proud of my Wolverines is our traditions. And I'm still not sure Rich really cares about those traditions. So many of you seem to hate our program (and for why, I still fail to understand), but I feel like Michigan is one of the most accomplished teams in all of college football.
That aside, I was skeptical but optimistic when the season started. Everyone seemed to be so excited about the spread offense coming to Ann Arbor, but in an age of instant-gratification, I found myself hoping for too much.
People think Michigan was outplayed by Utah, and I think in some instances that was true. Brian Johnson threw the ball very well, but Michigan's defense let them down, at least in the first half.
As I watched the offense, I knew that the problem wasn't Utah's high caliber defense, or even the lack of talent on the field. But understanding. When I first started playing high school football I didn't think it would be that complex, but there is so much more to it than simply lining up and smashing helmets.
Receivers have to make sure their routes are correct (# of steps, etc), linemen have to block well, and quarterbacks have to make progressive reads, which, for Nick Sheridan and Steven Threet, proved to be difficult at times.
Michigan's offense revealed itself for the first time on Saturday. It wasn't a 400+ yard powerhouse, but a youthful, inexperienced offense. The offensive line was shaky at best, but this was their first true experience and I give them credit where it is due. Sheridan and Threet were trying hard, there was no doubt, but experience was again the problem as they forced throws and air-balled too many as well.
I loved to see Sam McGuffie, the heralded youtube star on the field, but he was extremely foolish at times, attempting to spin and back peddle when he should have dove forward. No gain is better than a loss of 4 yards in my book.
Some of the young Receivers, and even Running Backs seemed lost at times, their routes in precise, and that ultimately cost Michigan first downs and points as well.
So whats going to happen the rest of the season? Well, I think Rodriguez is going to have to work his players harder. You can't defeat any team, especially Utah, when you can only run a tenth of the full playbook. Now, you tell me, Jeff!
Rodriguez had six freshmen in the lineup, they didn't understand/know it! Well, I would have like to seen Carlos Brown and Brandon Minor more. Yes, I know Minor fumbled, but they are experienced, they know more than the freshmen below them, even if those freshmen are more talented.
How is Michigan going to salvage this season? Well, considering most critics have already written them off (and rightfully so, we were dismal this week), Michigan will be taking an underdog stance into many more games this season.
I still like Nick Sheridan and Steven Threet isn't bad either, they showed flashes of brilliance at times, and with coaching and more experience they will provide better numbers.
The running game needs to work, that should have been the base of our offense against Utah. But of course the offensive line faltered and our inexperience really showed through.
So Wolverines, don't give up on Rich and the boys yet, its going to be ugly, but it takes time. Or you can wait for next year, and see Feagin/Beaver/Forcier run the true spread option.