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Michigan @ Michigan State, Game Day - Post Game Discussion.

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  • Originally posted by Pasadena Blue View Post
    I haven't worked up a desire to watch last year's O-state game ... but was the weakness that Sparty exploited (i.e. crush at the edge) similar to the ones IU and O-state exploited last year? If so, I should we worry that Iowa and O-state will exploit these leading to a similar spanking this year?
    Good question. I'll try to answer it. Both Iowa and MSU run pro-style offense's. Iowa's OL is very good compared to MSU according to PFF. The major difference in style is that Iowa is now and has been a zone blocking OL. MSU primarily gap or man blocks though they do zone block occasionally. M already did pretty well against Wisky early in the season, so there is that to think about.

    It's going to help that M saw the kinds of things an offense can do to advantage itself with motion against M's tendencies on D. I suspect, as has been noted by others, that Brown will deploy a heavier front 4 using Hurst on early downs. Not sure what he'll do with Peppers in a 4-3 alignment. I'm betting nothing as he's too good to not have out there even though if he gets iso'ed, which is what MSU was able to do, he's really too light to handle Iowa's zone schemes which will try to reach block him out of the play. Brown will also bring a S up and play one hi there and continue man on the receivers.

    The big weakness in Iowa's offense is the passing game. It ranks 107th nationally. It will be interesting to see what Ferentz does with this. I see a lot of TE stuff being run. He'll try to get matchups on his TEs with Gideon and Peppers inside and Stribbling on out patterns. Bethard is a goodQB. Better than anything MSU threw out there. His receivers have been bad. Maybe this will be their game. However, when you look at how good M's back side has been with Lewis and Stibling, you have to think Iowa won't get a lot here.

    I'm less worried about M being able to set the edge. They actually did this well against MSU, better on the offense's left than right but OK nonetheless. Effective MSU runs to the edges resulted in most cases because of missed tackles, especially on the right.

    Should we be worried about Iowa? Yes, it's on the road and Iowa is better than their record is. I expect a game that will look a lot like M looked against MSU. Lots of similarities but Ferentz is a lot more predictable in what he does that Dantonio so, what M plans for is pretty close to what they'll get. Play with discipline, make tackles on D, execute on O and M should be fine.

    OSU is a completely different animal that runs a spread to run offense. I like Brown's D vs this. Barrett is a very good RPO QB in that he's slippery. The D thinks they have the play diagnosed and he breaks contain for a big play. ufm calls a lot of IZ/OZ runs with a bit of veer mixed in. This year, osu lacks the kind of speed Elliot had to be efficient but they are still dangerous. That's not to say Weber and Samuels are bad. They're good, hit the gaps on Zone stretch plays but don't have the acceleration Ellioit did that M simply could not match up with talent wise last season and IMO in Durkin's scheme.

    This season, I like Brown's approach to the spread. He also has has DEs setting a better edge and more speed in McCray, Gideon and Peppers to back that up. S play may be in question but hopefully someone is making contact with a runner before they do and they're just cleaning up. Well get a good feel for how well that is actually working vs IU the week before the osu game.
    On Harbaugh's expectations for M football in 2015 (NFL NETWORK): “We'd rather be about it than talk about it."