Monday, October 9, 2017

Complete Unmitigated Disaster

Unfortunately, there wasn’t a post-game tailgate to discuss this debacle…Weather and a fear that I had caught pneumonia from the monsoon prevented the crew from hanging around…

The Numbers:

Brady Joke through 31 games: 24-7

Jim Harbaugh through 31 games:  24-7

For comparison's sake over a five-game start vs. Michigan State and Ohio State: Lloyd Carr started 4-1, Gary Moeller started 4-1, Bo Schembechler started 3-2. Only Rich Rodriguez (0-5) has started worse. 
Harbaugh's reaction to this?
"I don't know," he said. "We're bowing our necks, getting ready for the next game. That's our reaction." 
The Play Calling (the Angel – Angelique Chengelis):

Harbaugh recently said that offensive coordinator Tim Drevno and pass-game coordinator Pep Hamilton call the plays, and he’s third in that chain. But the head coach ultimately signs off on the play-call. Lots of blame to go around here on that matter, but let’s be honest — this was not the first time this season Michigan’s play-calling has had to be questioned. Remember not long ago, the first three games of the season when the Wolverines had one touchdown in 10 red-zone trips? Quarterback Wilton Speight, now injured and sidelined, took criticism, but a quarterback can only do so much when the plays do not seem inventive enough to put them in potentially successful situations.


I really don’t know what to say or feel at this point about Michigan’s Offense and Jimmy Harbaugh in general.  A serviceable offense – one that can run off-tackle and gain a 1st down would be something that’s a given in your 3rd year.  The Honeymoon is over.  It’s a marriage now and marriages have their ups and downs.  But you don’t give up on each other.  That being said, I’m tired of making excuses for the head coach.  It must come to an end soon.  I’m not giving up on him, I’m just saying that he has to adjust – and soon.
However, I will say this:  Growing up, I lived and breathed Michigan Football.  I believed Michigan as 2nd to none.  That’s an attitude.  

Bo Schembechler was a 2nd father to me.  And when I finally made into the “Greatest University In the Land”, my freshmen year, Harbaugh broke his arm against Sparty and Michigan finished 6-6, losing a bowl game, to the disbelief of everyone associated with the program, to BYU.  To some kid named Robbie Bosco at QB, who had taken over for Steve Young.  But better things happened the following seasons.  Good things.  It takes time…

The Details

Michigan’s Offensive line is exactly that – Offensive. 
When you can’t block 4 guys using 5 guys, that’s a problem.  I don’t think – and again, I haven’t seen the replay yet, I don’t think Sparty ever rushed more than 4 on 1st and 2nd down.  And they were getting to O’Korn.  That’s a major problem.  Ulizio got pulled in the 2nd half for Beatty, and that didn’t improve ANYTHING (Right Tackle).  And he should have been pulled.  It’s almost like there’s no one that has a clue as to how to play on the offensive line…

5 turn-overs don’t help either.  The crippling one being the fumble after the completion late in the 1st half by McKeon was absolutely devastating.  I turned to my daughter and stated, “that could be the game – RIGHT THERE!”

You simply can’t turn the ball over.  That is the worst sin of anything you can do in a football game.  Woody Hayes threw kids out of practice for fumbling the football.  He kicked kids off the team for fumbling the football in a game.  There is some logic and reasoning to that attitude…

And I’m going to add to Angel’s take on the play-calling:  Something, ANYTHING, has to change.  She talked about the 2nd half where Michigan was actually able to run the ball.  The penultimate drive in the 4th quarter saw 4 or 5 plays where Michigan ran the ball effectively for more than 5 yards on each play.  Then, in a driving rain, Michigan called three consecutive pass plays?  Really?  But I want to go back to the 1st half when Michigan had an opportunity to pass or call unexpected plays but continuously and unsuccessfully ran into the heart of Sparty’s D.  What were you thinking?

OK – All THAT being said – Are you ready for this?  All is not lost.  Believe it or not, Michigan can still pull this off, but the road just got a lot rougher and steeper.  There can be NO SLIP-UPS and NO MISTAKES from this point forward.   I hear you all laughing.  I’m saying that this thing can still be turned around.  It can.  Defense wins…

I don’t feel very good this AM and I didn’t feel good yesterday, either.  Especially when the Tweet hit that Speight was out for the season with 3 broken vertebrae. 

That’s not good.  O’korn is your guy.  This horrendous offensive line is what we have to work with..
However, I’m a fan and will find reasons to stay with this team – through good and bad.

The Rest of the Mess

YHMA You Have My Attention
Alabama:   I’ve avoided talking about these guys as were eventually going to have to talk about them A LOT.  And I get annoyed that every off-season all we do is talk Bama and Satan.  And during the season everyone talks about Bama.  So yeah, it gets a little boring.  And now, they’re even referring to themselves as being dominant and the Death Star of the SEC
I wonder if there’s a small exhaust port on this Death Star that a small fighter can drop a bomb into?

NC State:  Won in very convincing fashion on Thursday night by more or less controlling Jackson and taking care of the ball on offense.  And I really liked – nay, I LOVED the NC State Student Section trolling the Louisville players with the chant of “FBI” in the 4th quarter.

(You’ll have to follow the link – I couldn’t figure out a way to embed)  Peeking ahead, NC State has Pitt and then goes up to Domerland.  Interesting fact:  The Domers will be coming off an emotional game against USC, ripe for an upset either way (win or lose).  Can the Wolfpack go into South Bend and surprise them and be that sleeper team that nobody saw coming?

CUD – Complete, Unmitigated Disasters!!!

In addition to Michigan...

Louisville:   Louisville has had, probably, one of the worst months in collegiate athletics history.  I really can’t think of another, save Michigan Basketball with respect to Ed Martin in early 1999 and the 2000 Football Season.  Still, that spanned 18 months.  Everything happened to Louisville in a WEEK!!!  They’ve lost their head B-Ball Coach, are on NCAA probation in hoops, under an FBI scandal, and now Petrino and company have two conference losses to Clemson and NC State (see above) more or less eliminating them from any CFP discussion.  If there’s a MAXIMUM Misery score, Louisville fans have to be pretty close – kind of where Michigan fans were during the end of Brandictator’s tenure… 

Oklahoma:   Only in College Football can you go from being the team that everyone looks at and says, “Hey!  You’re going to be in the CFP!” to “GOD!  Do you guys ever suck…”   Oklahoma lost a game where they were 31 point favorites and is the only thing keeping Michigan from being the biggest disaster of the weekend.  Again, The Laters are not out of anything and have one of the best wins of the season by upsetting the Suckeyes, but Perfection is a must form this point forward.

Gophers:  Losing to Purdon’t is kind of like…well, losing to Sparty, I guess.  Purdon’t is no longer the laughingstock of the B1G West.  That goes to Illinois, which…I dunno’ anymore.  You can still be a spoiler, which is always nice.

Cornhuskers:  The Riley Firing is eminent.  Unfortunately, there is worse misery than Michigan fans are experiencing and that is the 3rd year of Riley’s tenure in Lincoln.  Losing to Wiscy is bad.  Being un-competitive in the loss is worse…

Arkansas:  If Jeff Long wasn’t the AD, Bielema would already be gone…..

CBOTL – Come Back Off the Ledge

These are losses that looked bad, but there’s no reason to panic and sell the season duckets yet.

Wake Forest:  Dear Demon Deacons:  It’s only a loss to the #2 Team in the COUNTRY!  You hung with them (better than the FMQ thought you would) and you have a lot of season left.

Utah:  First loss of the season to a Stanford team that technically should be ranked in the top 25 (rather, I should say, Statistically).  Keep plugging away in the Pac 12 and everything will work out.
PGL – Pretty Good Loss

Gatorland:  I had a feeling that LSU wasn’t going to lay down.  Florida and Michigan are living parallel lives.  This loss hurt, but Florida can still make SEC noise.  Should be easier now that there’s a “no worries” attitude and play every game with your hair on fire.

WWB – We Won, But…We Should Be Worried

Sparty:  You suck.  Plain and simple.  You just “Sucked Less” than Michigan. 

Bama:  If Michigan hadn’t lost, I would be eating this up.  Texas A&M gave you a game and exposed your defense.  Unfortunately, your offense has improved.

Clemson:  You were a 28 point favorite to a team school that’s know for Hoops.  Be Worried…

And the Rest…

Miami vs. FSU:  Don’t look now, but the Canes are 4-0 with a victory over a resurging Seminoles team.  I’m not sure how the ACC shakes out at this point, but Richy Richt is going to have a say in it!

Virginai Tech vs. BC:  Va Tech takes care of business.  See Miami for a reference to Va-Tech having a say in the ACC.

Domers vs. UNC:  As much as this pains me...  The Domers still have a voice in the CFP due to the fact that Georgia is taking care of business in the SEC.  Let’s see what happens this week vs. USC.

The 5 Stages of Slappy Fan Grief

  1. Denial and Isolation Michigan.  Win the rest, and everything will be fine!   
  2. ANGER –Michigan I can’t believe how sick and tired the fanbase is with a #1 in the country defense and an offense that can’t run their way out of a wet paper bag. 
  3. Bargaining –Michigan… The season can be salvaged with a win over PSU and the suckeyes...
  4. Depression –Michigan...Hasn’t beaten Sparty at Home since 2012
  5.  Acceptance – Michigan.  How has it come to this?  How does Michigan not have an offense under a coach that created an offense under Kapernick that got to the Super Bowl?

Ref Rants!
The holding call on what would have been a TD for Michigan late in the first half.  I don’t know what that ref was looking at, but it clearly was NOT holding…

Idle Thoughts from Saturday

-Gorgeous morning and afternoon on Saturday.
-Should have been a 3:30 kick
-Lots of Tailgate Action!
-Jim G even stopped by!
-Penn State looked extremely efficient against the kitty kats
-They are undoubtedly the best in the B1G right now.
-I know.  I saw the Suckeyes score.
-Maryland doesn’t have a QB
-And the Suckeyes like to run it up.
-Wait until they play somebody good again
-“Pitino will have a another College job in 2 years!”
-God, I hope not.  NCAA needs to act quickly here.
-Glad Michigan has Beilein
-Uh-Oh.  The Laters LOST!
-To Iowa State!
-As 31 point Favorites!
-I remember having a sense of relief as the “Big Upset” had already happened.
-And everyone else would wake up and it would be business as usual.
-When is it ever business as usual in the Big House?
-Against Sparty?
-I hate Dantonio….
-I mean, I really HATE HIM
-I wish Sparty would go back under their rock and focus on hoops…
-Bad Omens:  Virgins at the game, honoring the 1997 National Champs, and 1st ever night game…
-I was trying to ignore all of that…
-Didn’t help.
-Why are we trying to run the ball?
-We don’t have an offensive line!
-Screens and trickery are required.
-Kind of like what Sparty did on their second TD
-Beautifully set up. 
-You could tell they worked on that play for a long time in practice.
-One play in a game like this can make the difference…
-One play.
-One drive. 
-OMG.  Don’t fumble! 
-That 2nd quarter drive should have resulted in points
-I knew that fumble was a disaster
-Holtz has gone on record and said that last 5 minutes of the 2nd quarter and the first 5 of the 3rd are the most important of the game…
-I agree.
-A score late in the 2nd would have changed the complexion and emotion of the game.
-Instead, Sparty goes into the locker room with confidence.
-Is Harbaugh drinking at half-time?
-Or pre-game for that matter?
-Michigan scored in the 3rd quarter
-Now I’m wet
-How did we forget to take ponchos?
-Now I’m soaked
-And Michigan is passing…
-To Sparty
-Multiple times.
-And the Defense Holds
-What are you doing???
-This was officially my last night game….
-Too late, too tired, too cold, too old…
-I’m a fan, but I would have rather had $500 in my pocket sitting on my couch…
-I’m gone…
-Monday Note:  I amaze myself with how fast I can bang out 2,500 words on a Monday morning…
-I’m not that efficient in any other aspect of my life

Will return when the Committee makes their first ranking!

The Hot Seat
Still looking for Hot Coach’s wives suggestions!
This week, University of Central Florida Lane Kiffin’s wife gets the nod!

We’ll keep track of who’s gone as the season progresses….
  1. “Holier than Thou” Hugh Freeze 

Electric Chair of Death Seat!
  1. Riley - Nebraska.  As the great Corso says, “Lose at home and it’s okay.  Getting BLOWN OUT at home is a recipe for disaster…”.

The Hot Seat

1.    Fedora – UNC  Not even close against the Domers.... 
2.    Mullen – uh oh.  But he’ll get a job somewhere else.  Too good of a coach.
3.    Sumlin:  Still needs a big Win. 
4.    Bret Bielema:  Brett lucky to have Jeff Long as his AD.  Long has a lot of patience….    
5.    OdomMizzou.  Luckily he’s a grad.  Might survive a bad season.
6.    McElwain Losing to a team that lost to a Sun Belt school is not a good look…
7.    Ogeron -LSU  That was a big win in the Swamp.  Saved him for the time being.
8.    Mulzahn
9.    Rich Rod
10. Graham

1.     Oklahoma more or less owns schadenfreude
3.    But Michigan got a mention…
4.    Happy Speight is out? 

5.    I’m not


Paul V. Lioon said...

Isn't our O-Line experienced and suppose to be dominate... So disappointing!! Don Brown's Defense are doing their Jobs!

Paul V. Lioon said...

Isn't our O-Line experienced and suppose to be dominate... So disappointing!! Don Brown's Defense are doing their Jobs!