Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Part 2- Michigan Football Tidbits: Practice Notes

Part 2- Michigan Football Tidbits: Practice Notes

8) The offensive Line is our favorite group. We really thought there would be some intense competition at a couple of positions. Ortmann, Molk, and Schilling are still sure starters, but the injury to Barnum has really hindered this growth. That means Mooseman is the right guard, so the only real competition is between Huyge and Omameh. As of now, Huyge is still hanging on and doing well.

9) We are starting to get cautiously optimistic about our defensive line group. Of course, they have messed up before, but we really like what we have seen out of Banks and Patterson as back-ups. Patterson especially has really improved his ability to defend the run, so maybe he contributes this year off the bench.

10) We were surprised by the amount of power sets they ran in practice. With a guy like Minor, this should help the team.

11) Tight ends: This is what probably has disappointed us the most so far. Webb has dropped a couple and Koger, sometimes we wonder if he needs to get a little more aggressive. He is a very good team player, but it would not hurt for him to become a little more selfish.

12) We believe if the coaches were truthful they would say practices have been good, maybe okay, but not great. Now maybe it is because expectations are much higher and there is a sense of urgency, but the coaches are starting to get a little less patient in practices.

13) One observation, perhaps obvious: it makes a huge difference for freshmen to have that initial spring experience. Most of the freshmen who were at UM in the spring are way ahead of the incoming freshmen. A good example is Toussaint vs. Smith. Although Toussaint has been a little banged up, it is obvious that he was surprised with the level of physical play of college players, whereas, Smith feels very comfortable.

14) Here is something to watch for. What do you do with Fitzgerald? He is behind Ezeh and Mouton (more on Mouton later), but Fitzgerald is really a good athlete and needs to play, but where? Barring injury, he could be behind these two for the next two years. Our thought is this: depending on what happens early in the season, if the goal is to get the best players on the field, then Fitzgerald has to play somewhere.

15) Mouton: It’s only fall practice, but finally, just maybe, maturity has kicked in and he now seems to "get it". As we previously reported, sometimes injuries and being away from the game helps certain kids. And in Mouton’s case we would put him in that category because he has been one of the stars in fall camp.

16) Warren has also benefited from time off. He seems very upbeat and enthused, but he needs to get his fundamentals back. Now maybe he is playing a little tentative and he really only needs to be ready by September, but early on his play has been average and average will not cut it this fall. This defense needs him to step up and be one of the best on the defensive side of the ball. As we reported earlier, UM needs to finally have its best players play great against the better teams, because that will make the other players play better.

17) Teric Jones, what a great kid who is really working hard and is one of those kids you would love to see succeed. But making this type of transition is not easy, especially at the college level. His strength: he is physical, but his weakness is, at least early on, he will have to play mainly in zone defense.

Wednesday will be a big day. It is scheduled to be the first real game-like scrimmage.

Stay tuned!!

Thanks for stopping by Go Blue Michigan Wolverine
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Written by MaizeMan and ErocWolverine


Kenny Ye said...

Thanks MaizeMan and ErocWolverine for your insightful report on the practice. It is good to know that the power sets could be deployed more often this year. It should only help our young QB and the receivers to develop. One question, I wonder if you see Denard Robinson be used somewhere else besides QB?

Anonymous said...

Thanks for all the info guys....great work. Quick question regarding Banks and Patterson, is Banks playing the 3tech/5tech spot (backing up RVB) and Patterson the weakside 5tech, or is it the other way around?? Thanks.

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