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Member since 19 February 2012 | Blog

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Comment 15 Nov 2012

I agree that Michigan's DT's aren't going to amaze anyone in sheer talent, but I guess most Michigan fans speak highly of them because coming into the year it was downright terrifying at how low the floor could be at that position. You had a very underachieving 5 star (Campbell), a guy who had tried and failed on both sides of the line already (Washington), a true freshman (Pipkins), and a converted rush-end (Black). The fact that they can hold up against double teams some of the time and even make some plays has been pretty incredible for me to watch.

And I would say in general that what's cool about this defense is that the talent level is just not all that high, and yet they manage to get it done more often than not. There is no Hankins, Roby, Simon, or Shazier in terms of talent and athleticism out there. As you pointed out, they get it done because Mattison puts them in a position to succeed, and it's going to be fun to watch the defense improve as they get the guys they evaluated and recruited coming in.

As for this year, I would be shocked to see Ohio State score less than 30-31 points in this game. Against someone like Miller who can exploit their lack of talent and athleticism, they're going to have a tough time. To me, the real battles between these two schools start in 2014 when everyone has their guns fully loaded. That's when it's going to be really fun.

Comment 15 Nov 2012

Michigan fan here. This was a good post and I agree with a lot of what Ross has said. For OSU's offense to be successful, they're going to need to focus their run game on the edges. Ever since the Alabama game, no one has really had a ton of success running on Michigan between the tackles because the interior line (the two DT's and then the SDE in the 4-3 Under) is so good at executing the technique that Mattison teaches and occupying the linemen so that the linebackers can flow to the ball. Also, if you remember the game last year, Herron only had 2.5 ypc while Miller was at 6.3. I think in this game you're going to see Miller get around 80% of OSU's yards by using the inverted veer and other things to put the defense in a tough position, and get to the edge with other plays.

Additionally, Braxton is definitely going to have to throw an accurate deep ball once or twice in the game like he couldn't last year. Floyd has limited athleticism and while he doesn't ever let guys get hand-wavingly open on him, receivers can usually get a step. However, very few quarterbacks have been able to hit the perfect throw on those deep balls even though it's there. Miller is going to have to hit those to really get the offense hitting on all cylinders.

Comment 20 Apr 2012

The thing you have to shake your head at was the fact that he failed a planned drug test. It's one thing to fail a random one, but one you have full control over? you just don't care if you fail.