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Rutgers @ Michigan, 10/28/17, Noon, Eastern, BTN/Stream BTN2Go

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  • #16
    So my question is: if it so easy for us to see that having McCray in coverage is an issue and not his strong suit (this has been noted by Brian at Mgoblog for the last year) than why do the coaches continue to ask him to do that? It makes no sense.


    • #17
      McCray, while slow and lacking awareness, has SENIOR LEADERSHIP. You know, that Speight trait that is so important.
      Go Detroit Lions!


      • #18
        That right Cody and Mason Cole is the leader on offense - the below average chick next to all the ugly chicks = Not so bad!


        • #19
          Originally posted by WingsFan View Post
          No time to wallow in the mire
          The time to hesitate is through...
          I'll let you ban hate speech when you let me define hate speech.


          • #20
            Offensive line sucks, playing the backup QB, and I expect a few drops by the receivers as usual; Hannibal... M should win 34-7..

            McCray shouldn't be playing man coverage unless it's against a not very athletic tight end. He doesn't change direction well, takes a bit to get up to speed. With the other linebackers blitzing, he ends up in coverage too often. Opposing offensive coordinators are taking advantage of him putting him in on one matchups that he not surprisingly loses too often.
            Last edited by WM Wolverine; October 22nd, 2017, 06:04 PM.


            • #21
              So why hasn't M adjusted with McCray? E.g. Moving him to the middle.


              • #22
                Ask Brown, I'm interested to see the UFR to see if McCray was exposed as often as I thought. Obviously they prefer Devin Bush in the middle for their defense. This was the first game where the opposing OC kept going at McCray to exploit his weaknesses.


                • #23
                  Originally posted by paul daugherity View Post
                  So why hasn't M adjusted with McCray? E.g. Moving him to the middle.
                  I'm not Don Brown nor do I claim to be inside his head but there's enough information out there to discern a reasonable answer to that.

                  He's a 3-3-5 Stack guy. Sometimes this looks like a 4-2-5. There's a bunch of other variations in formations that we've seen - too many to discuss here.

                  Bush plays outside on the play side sometime, inside at others. He frequently switches with McCray. When you see what looks like 2 LBs, the third may actually be lined up on the LOS threatening a blitz (either blitzing or dropping back into LB type coverage).

                  Bush is seen her in the middle of the 3-3-5 - stack and I think this is where Brown likes him the best. McCray is outside and on the play side. McCray stands up to power/IZ runs better than Bush does but Bush has more side-line-to-sideline speed.

                  This is from 2016 but its the 4-2-5. You can see Peppers lined up on the B and this is where Bush plays in this formation in 2017.

                  This is over simplifying what Brown does with formations and changes during the play call by the offense because there are probably at least 5 different formations that I've seen photos of.

                  The thing to see here is that Bush and McCray are interchangeable. V. PSU, I think McCray, when he played in the 4-2-5 was in the middle and the expected offensive play was IZ from Barkley. When the D was in the 3-3-5 Stack, Bush was in the middle and the expected play was RO or outside zone.

                  What I think happened and Brian will comment on RPS in the UFR, is that McSorely made line calls depending on where Bush and McCray were lined up. Franklin and Moorehead had some very good plays designed to counter tendencies for M's D with feints using Barkley alternatively with McSorley. The first and second PSU scoring drives exemplified this.

                  So, it didn't matter and I don't think there was a defensive plan to assign Bush or McCray to Barkley. Brown does what he does trying to anticipate the play call based on scouting and on formation tendencies. He got massively had by Moorehead and most of it worked because PSU executed near perfectly except when they didn't and/or Brown had the right call in and this wasn't often.

                  What viewers think they saw too often was McCray getting beaten by Barkley. The reality was that it didn't matter, Barkley was beating everyone because of play design that got M defenders, esp, the LBs and Ss flowing opposite where the play actually developed and went.
                  Last edited by Jeff Buchanan; October 22nd, 2017, 09:22 PM.
                  On Harbaugh's expectations for M football in 2015 (NFL NETWORK): “We'd rather be about it than talk about it."


                  • #24
                    If it wasn't McCray it would have been the safeties. PSU has some serious weapons, and containing Barkley opens it up for the rest. It's a very good offense and it felt like facing Sparty in terms of the team's focus and atmosphere. They wanted this one and had to have it. I do hope all LBs in the future will be faster than McCray.


                    • #25
                      Just a few headlines with a fast google of Jim Harbaugh, no comment....before the big game!

                      Michigan's Jim Harbaugh is no deity, not living up to $7 million hype


                      Michigan is fine with Jim Harbaugh, but that's not good enough


                      Blame Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, not the quarterback


                      James Franklin Crushes Jim Harbaugh Edition


                      Michigan, Jim Harbaugh falling short of hype


                      Humble pie served on platter for Jim Harbaugh


                      Michigan fans are bailing on Jim Harbaugh after blowout loss



                      • #26
                        The turnaround in the year since last year's PSU game is stunning for both teams. I was forced to listen to the PSU broadcast of last year's game and they kept talking about how they just didn't measure up to a top level program like Michigan's, they needed to be bigger, faster, more physical if they wanted to compete. You could have pretty much applied that same broadcast to the UM team this year. It's disconcerting to say the least.


                        • #27
                          I agree with most of those takes that WingsFan posted. I am not seeing anyone calling for Harbaugh's firing, and there shouldn't be anything like that, but I am starting to see some expectations getting dialed back to a very disappointing new baseline. There is something about being the coach at Michigan that seems to make new coaches think that they can just waltz in and win with half-assed schemes and assistant hires. Michigan coaches don't coach like they are young, desperate, and hungry. They coach like they expect some magic pixie dust to turn shit into gold. The weird offensive staff arrangement that we have is an example of this. Would Harbaugh ever do something like that at Stanford? Or would he put his nephew in charge of the running backs? Probably not. The Harbaugh experience so far reminds me of the first half of Rocky III where Rocky poses for a pretty girl in the middle of a training session and then gets the shit kicked out of him in his first fight against Clubber Lang.


                          • #28
                            Winning big in the Big Ten East is going to be incredibly hard for anybody. Michigan is a great name brand, it is a blueblood of college football, but the expectations of Harbaugh are to get it to a position that most people if any have seen. That position is being a perennial NC contender. Harbaugh deserves every bit of criticism for Saturday night, that shouldn't have happened. The defense looked utterly flummoxed by what PSU was doing.

                            Don Brown has done a good job with the defense, but that defensive scheme is high risk, high reward. It is susceptible to plays going against flow and from my limited viewing they don't disguise what they are doing very much.


                            • #29
                              Things will be looking more positive here three weeks from now when M is 8-2 and a big game at Wisconsin is about to happen.

                              M is fine. As Aaron Rodgers would say... "relax"
                              Harbaugh will make whatever changes are necessary in the offseason and we are close to the McCaffrey / Peters / Milton era at QB.
                              Go Detroit Lions!


                              • #30
                                Last year at this time they looked like they were ahead of schedule on a turnaround, with a dominating D, a good running game and adequate if unspectacular passing. That fell apart in the 2nd half and hasn't recovered. Some point to the Ohio game as a positive sign, but Ohio went on to get smoked by Clemson.

                                I can't for the life of me say why this is happening. I'm not a fan of Don Brown's style of D, but that's been the least of the problems. I'm still 100% behind Harbaugh, but it's looking like it will be a tougher, longer slog than it was looking like mid-way through last year.

                                I dont' expect UM to suddenly contend for the NC every year, but they should be contending for Big 10 titles and be a playoff threat regularly. A friend of mine likes to point to Dabo Swinney's first 3 years (well, 2.5 really) as a reason to not panic yet. Though the ACC at the time of Dabo's ascendancy was not what the Big10 East is.