Saturday, October 31, 2009

Links of Interest for Michigan - Recruiting

Football Recruiting:

Devin Gardner: UM Commit – Devin-Gardner-wants-more-games-before-U-M Invaders Wants more games before U-M Invaders --- Breaks other teams streak --- Makes playoffs --- Top 10 --- On tap --- Game highlights video --- Inkster leader
Cornelius Jones: UM Commit – Southern watch --- Picked for shrine bowl
Stephen Hopkins: UM Commit – 27 yard gallop in close loss
Austin White: UM Commit – 211 yards --- line jells
Ricardo Miller: UM Commit- scores on 38 yarder
Jerald Robinson: UM Commit – First half scoring
Kenny Shaw: huge nole lean
Alex Smith: Felt UM love
Seantrel Henderson: season wrapped up --- Brewster must go if he doesn’t commit gophers --- Gets a pick
Skyler Schofner: clock ticking
Jake Kaufman: best game
Beau Allen: ND visit --- another ND visit
Sharif Floyd: Buckeye visit --- and --- enjoys OSU --- playoff time --- top list
Richard Ash: top 5
Corey Lemonier: southern attention
Josh Furman: Strong legged runner --- match-up
Aramide Olaniyan: Heavy UM interest --- discusses UM
Christian Jones: visited ND
Quayshawn Nealy: Guided missile
Tony Jefferson: still interested in UM --- UM visit
Courtney Avery: UM Commit – Building Um relationship --- slowed by injury --- shifty
Cullen Christian: Highly sought --- looking around --- confused by WV visit --- UCLA visit
Miles Simpson: Mr. football candidate
Jeremy Langford: Over 2000 yards rushing
Carvin Johnson: Loved UM visit


Beilein winning over skeptics
Practice open
Big Man pond
Frosh likely at point
Team breakdown
Pre-season All-B10
Recruiting legislation
#15 in the polls
B10 has more in the top
Preaseason B10 pick
Big Baby
Media day
Will Sheehey: possible UM visit --- 3 down --- many visitors --- Q&A --- Wildcats pulled their offer
Timothy Hardaway: UM Commit – legends son picks UM --- legends kids
Trey Zeigler: Talks UM --- Tough decisions
Ray McCallum: will he become a wildcat --- Dad or UA --- PAC 10 interest
PF Cody Zeller: Enjoyed UM visit
SF Michael Gilchrist: Nova visit
SF Quincy Miller: Combine

Other Sports:

UM dominates swim meet
In the paint with rookie females
Women expected to do poorly

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Written by Steve

GBMW: Football Coverage Map for 3:30pm and 8:00pm Games

3:30pm Game
Michigan at Illinois

8:00pm Night Games
USC at Oregon
Texas at Oklahoma State

Michigan Football: Michigan at Illinois

Michigan at Illinois
Michigan leads the series 66-22-2
October 31, 2009
3:30pm EDT. - 7:00pm EDT.
DirecTV Channel local ABC or 209
Local ABC or ESPN2

at Memorial Stadium

Memorial Stadium was built in 1923 as a memorial to Illinois men and women who gave their lives for their country during World War I. Their names appear on 200 columns that support the east and west sides of the stadium.

In 2008, the University of Illinois unveiled a completed Memorial Stadium renovation project that encompassed two years of work and over $116 million. The renovations to the North Endzone were completed in August of 2007 and the West structure, along with refurbishing of the East Great Hall. Among the renovation on the west side was the addition of luxury suites, indoor and outdoor club areas and a refurbishment of the concourses. An outdoor club space, the Colonnades Club, was added under the west balcony and allows for indoor game day hospitality, as well as outdoor chair back seats for contest viewing. In the west balcony, a three-level structure was built to house two floors of suites and an indoor club space, as well as a new press box for media seating and game day operations. The indoor club, which seats 200, has been named the "77 Club" to honor the retired number of Illinois gridiron legend Harold "Red" Grange.

Also added underneath the newly enclosed north bleachers, the Illinois football complex got an expansion and refurbishing of the weight room, training facilities and meeting space. The entire project was conducted keeping the stadium in a functioning capacity for the Illinois football team during the time of construction. The architectural firm HNTB of Kansas City, Mo., designed the renovation and Hunt Construction Managers handled the construction. HNTB is credited with many of the most recent athletic facility renovations, including Purdue's Ross-Ade Stadium, Ohio State's Ohio Stadium, Iowa's Kinnick Stadium and Denver's Invesco Field. Hunt has been in collaboration on many of the same facilities, as well as Detroit's Ford Field, St. Louis' new Busch Stadium, and Citizen's Bank Park in Philadelphia.

Come back later today to see the coverage map of this game and the others at that time and at 8:00pm tonight.

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Written by ErocWolverine

Friday, October 30, 2009

Michigan Football: Michigan at Illinois -- Go Blue Michigan Wolverine -- Predictions

Michigan at Illinois

Go Blue Michigan Wolverine -- Predictions

Michigan 31
Illinois 20

Coach Webb:
Michigan 27
Illinois 31

Michigan --
Illinois --

Michigan 27
Illinois 24

Michigan --
Illinois --

Michigan 34
Illinois 27

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Written by ErocWolverine

GBMW: Preview of Illinois game

Michigan at Illinois

Go Blue Michigan Wolverine -- Preview

GBMW: Preview of Illinois game

Well this week's game against Illinois could make Michigan bowl eligible. So, then, how will Michigan respond after the last several weeks of spiraling down from the short-lived heights? Will going on the road be much of a factor at all?

This sounds like a broken record but we still believe that the most important aspect/factor/variable of this game will be how well Michigan does up front, not only rushing the football but protecting the quarterbacks (plural).

Both quarterbacks need as much time as possible. If Michigan can run for 200 yards, we believe the team has an excellent chance to win Saturday’s game.

Part of the offensive success will be squarely on Tate as he must do a better job of reading both the inside and outside zone read plays. If Michigan wins the turnover margin, or at least breaks even, then they have an excellent chance to win Saturday.

Defensively, Michigan did a good job stopping the run except for the first rush of the game last week. Michigan must make Illinois a passing team, just like Illinois must try and make Michigan a passing team.

One thing to watch, can Michigan contain/ keep "Juice" in the pocket. Michigan must make him throw the ball and not him get into space where he can cause severe damage.

The UM defense must not let Benn make big plays, or at least minimalize his contributions. Benn has been hobbled by an ankle, but is an elite level talent when healthy.

Holding the Illinois point total down is a big game key, since Michigan should be able to score on the Illiini defense.

To most Michigan fans they see this as an easy game and an easy prediction, but this game is by far the most difficult game to predict this year. We could easily see both teams winning. Illinois is statistically terrible, but they are at home and certainly had Michigan’s number last year. And Michigan has continued to struggle at least somewhat with a quarterback that can create and run with the ball.

Illinois usually plays Michigan tough at home and this might be a chance for Illinois to put it all together. They always seem to be able to play their best football of the year against Michigan. Will they Saturday?

Finally, Michigan is not as bad as they played last week against Penn State and probably not as good as they played against Notre Dame. Although they are a much better team than last year, so progress is occurring.

Come back later today to see our predictions

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Written by CoachBt, Coach Webb, and ErocWolverine

GBMW: Doc4blu Preview

Michigan at Illinois

Doc4blu -- Preview

GBMW: Doc4blu Preview

Let us start off this week with two bizarre little teaser questions: First, what does Forrest Gump have to do with this game, and second what common everyday item can describe UM and Illinois this week?

Regarding Forrest, who may have had some difficulty in Coach Rod’s spread, the Illini and Wolverines are at this point of the season a box of chocolates. So, to start with what is the result of a box of chocolates crossed with a box of chocolates? Square chocolates, diabetes, a mess, or a wealthy candy company might be wise answers? As Mamma Gump stated, you never know what you will get. In football terms this means who will show up and play better and maybe get a break along the way.

Have fun predicting this game under the set of circumstances described above. But that leads to question number two for help in any meaningful form of appraisal. The question again was what common everyday item can describe UM and Illinois together this week? The answer is a mirror. Yes, one team is 5 and 3 and the other is 1 and 6, but both have similar symptoms. Consider the following in using the mirror metaphor.
• Both teams have had frustrating ups and downs with offensive production, with long periods of lack of success after tearing it up.
• Both star quarterbacks, albeit one a senior and one a freshman have had recent crashes.
• Both offenses have had key injuries and play patched up.
• Both teams have stopped no one of any consequence on defense.
• Both teams have killed themselves with penalties at key junctures.
• Both teams will look at film and will have a key decision to make regarding the game plan- attack the weakness or play from the strength aspect?
• Both teams have shaky defensive back play.
• Both teams have dual quarterback systems now in place, with limited success.
• Both teams know this is a crossroad game that could turn the season or doom it.
• Both teams will likely play very hard, but maybe not very smart.
• Both teams, since Illinois is bent on the youth movement, are young.

So, the mirror is not inappropriate for the purposes of comparison.

So what might happen Saturday that some football insight might hit upon? Look for the Michigan o-line to attempt to chew the Illini defensive front. How will Illinois adjust? Both teams will likely try and force the other to throw and attempt to hold the quarterback in check.

Look for Juice Williams to come out fresh, energetic, and renewed. Except for the Cincinnati game, this is Juice’s last big stage. Do not buy into Zook’s dual qb talk too much. If Juice is cooking the oven will stay on.

Michigan better cover Benn, especially on kickoffs. If the coverage team continues its slide, Benn could break two or three big ones, which would spell disaster to UM. The quarterback with the most time might be the winner on Saturday.

Come back later today to see GBMW predictions

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Written by Doc4blu

Links of Interest for Michigan -- News

NCAA Investigation of Michigan

UM receives inquiry notice
NCAA Believes major violations may have occurred
If allegations are true rich rod is pinocchio.html
Rich Rodriguez eager for investigation to end
Rich Rodriguez on ncaa investigation
Fully cooperating


Anthony Barr: UM eliminated
Owamagbe Odighizuwa: Narrows list
David Perry: Commits Miami


Lloyd praises RR
2011 DE to visit
Kovacs rising quick
2011 WR Alonzo Lewis getting UM interest
AD names
Brady back on top
JoePA coulda been UM
Secondary value
JoePA supports RR
Tate top frosh
Kovac leaps into role
PSU makes itself at home
Carr can’t save RR
Molks absence felt
What we learned
Clark doesn’t get his due
2011 S Jeremy Cash expecting UM offer
B10 best got better
Molk out for season
UM illini spread
Hollowell concentrating on playoffs
Ugly scene
Edwards charged w/ assault
UM can lock up eligibility w/ Illini win
Lions roar at big house
What happened
Illini starter named
Purdue game time
Power poll
Football no fun in MI
Looking back at UM
Award updates
McAvoys looking around
MI media
HaSean Clinton Dix Close to UM offer
Obi NFL bound
BooBoo Booted
Out of juice
A world ago
Jalen Grimble interview --- LSU visit
Illini desperate
Juice and Jake show
Like old days
Illini meltdown
DRob thumbs down
Kick-off times
Week 9 power rankings
UM not ready for primetime
Lions regain swagger
Final score
Lions D
Rough days continue
Came out hot
Downfall rests on many
Expectations fall
Wolverines sloppy
UM can’t handle top O
2 minute drill
O devotion
Domain names
Early signing wanted
Anemic O
More questions
Monday presser
Game highlights
Tate not only struggler
Below C level
Graham plays well despite
Poise in final 4
Game guide
D falls apart
Son honored
UM played scared
UM reeling
Clark tosses 4
UM interested in 2011 DT Donte Phillips
2011 OL Kevin Reihner talks UM visit
B10 not Heisman worthy
Week 9 picks
D cooling O heels
Good games better
Graham blocks punt
Little brown jug
BooBoo charge dismissed
RR breaks down the inside zone
Corner concerns
Week 9 picks
What to watch
5 reasons to fear Illini
Be wary
Carlos will stay on kickoffs
Benn interview
Moose settles in
Scouting Illini
NFL draft notes
Growing pains
2011 top 100
Hit up and down
B10 Power rankings
Rebuild gone awry

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Written by Steve

GBMW: Michigan Football Tidbits -- MaizeMan's thoughts on the Michigan defense and Coach Robinson

GBMW: Michigan Football Tidbits -- MaizeMan's thoughts on the Michigan defense and Coach Robinson

1) Coming out of the spring practices, Coach Robinson knew UM had very little depth, but he thought the starters would be at least adequate.

2) Like most coaches I do not think he is overly happy with the current progress shown by his troops. He is especially upset at the inability of the defense to get off the field on third and long situations. However, Coach Robinson is happy with the team’s red-zone defense.

3) On defense, UM wants bigger, faster players. Coach Robinson will tweak any system and the associated schemes to get the best players onto the field.

4) Again, like most coaches, Coach Robinson is impatient when he comes to players and position progress. He is a stickler on tackling, so I think he is happy with the player’s progress in terms of picking up his system of tackling techniques and drills.

5) B. Graham, and possibly D. Warren, will soon be gone. One will be a huge loss, while the other could be as well. Unless UM can find a way to get to the quarterback consistently, without blitzing, Michigan 's defense will continue to be average, at least for the foreseeable future.

6) Expectations have receded into the "realistic" mode. Next year Coach Robinson is fully expecting progress and will push for adjusting practices to include more emphasis on defensive needs. The meaning of the above is that the defense will be practicing to become a better defense instead of being a mere instrument of being available simply to provide defenders against the UM offense.

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Written by MaizeMan

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Mailbag question: Question about Tate

Mailbag question: Question about Tate

First off, love the blog!

Question for you on Tate.

Wondering if more of the issues with him have to do with the injury to his throwing arm rather than him being rattled and making bad decisions. I know the weather has not helped him, but his ball does not seem to look as nice as it did earlier this year. I know he claims to be 100%, but wondered what are your thoughts on this?

Also, from what you see, do you predict this defense improving next year with the incoming freshman and red-shirted players coming in, or will the loss of Graham and possibly Warren be tough to overcome?



Thanks for the question and comments.

There are many factors involved with Forcier’s recent performance. His injury is definitely a factor, but so is his inexperience. The lack of talent around him is also a factor.

Another factor is that teams have caught onto Forcier’s game and have made adjustments to take away what things he does well.

For the defense, much will depend on whether the entire staff returns and if D. Warren returns for his last year of eligibility.

Losing B. Graham is a huge hole, with no real replacement in sight. Losing S. Brown, the only true strong-side linebacker, is also going to be difficult.

Next question is if Roh steps up and plays B. Graham’s position then who plays Quick?

We would expect a year of experience to be helpful, but overall we are still going to have significant concerns about the defense until we see at least average linebacker and safety play.

In our opinion, it is almost impossible to be even a good defensive team without being strong up the middle.

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Written by CoachBt and ErocWolverine

Mailbag question: Receiver not helping much

Mailbag question: Receiver not helping much

Is it just me, or are the receivers not giving Tate much help when he scrambles. It seems that when he scrambles the receivers are stopping and not finding an open area.

Tom C.


Thanks for the question.

In our opinion, that is one of many problems with passing game.
Other problems include:
1) Dropped passes.

2) A lack of a vertical game to stretch a defense; this has really hurt this offense.

3) Poor pass protection, especially blocking the edge and three tech defensive tackles.

4) Forcier is holding the ball too long and he seems to be prejudging where the throw will be going before it is snapped.

5) Receivers are not working back to Forcier when scrambling and it almost seems like they are standing around waiting to see what Forcier does, because in most cases he tries to just scramble and run with it.

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Written by CoachBt and ErocWolverine

Mailbag question: defensive formation

Mailbag question: Defensive formation


PSU scored on two junior high sets. One where the wide receiver runs a stop, and the slot runs a corner -- TD. Next time the wide receiver runs a go and the slot runs an out -- TD. I guess we know why Stevie Brown was moved out of the secondary.

Why do we have LB's like Ezeh covering wide outs and fast TE's? Could you speak to these things?

Great Blog, Thanks.



Thanks for the question.

This standard coverage is in zone blitz schemes and in some man coverage’s in the red zone.

Both the touchdowns were against full blitzes that Penn State picked up.

When the blitz did not get to Clark, S. Brown was a huge island matched up against a wide receiver he is not athletic enough to cover.

Ezeh’s coverage was in a blitz also and he had to fill the hole in the coverage, all the way down a seam.

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Written by CoachBt and ErocWolverine

Mailbag question: Offensive question

Mailbag question: Offensive question

I have heard a lot of talk about the offense needing to be in rhythm to be successful. Some of the problems affecting this rhythm I know are put on the defense. However, football has a way of being unpredictable. The MSU, Iowa and PSU games saw the rhythm disrupted. Only in the Iowa game did I see an adjustment to find success in something, knowing that the entire package was not clicking. There we just pounded the ball.

My concern is that even when this transition is complete and a true RR team takes the field, the issues with the offensive rhythm being disrupted will still happen. This offense seems very fragile to any mishaps. Do you think the grinding out of trying to get back on rhythm as opposed to flirting with other ideas falls on to thinking about the future as opposed to the present?

Andy P.


Thanks for the question.

Michigan does a few things to get back into rhythm. The coaches manipulate personnel, change tempos, and use different formations to accomplish this.

The key to this offense working is the quarterback making proper reads, if he does not make good reads, nothing else will make a difference.

In our opinion the reads are the #1 issue, Forcier is not making proper reads, which has led to negative plays. This is not the type of offense that can make a living on second or third and long.

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Written by CoachBt and ErocWolverine

GBMW: Doc4blu -- What Happened and What It Means -- Penn State

GBMW: What Happened and What It Means – Penn State

The prediction for last Saturday’s game was PSU a winner in the 7-10 point range. That prediction was sent to the bottom by a defense that gave generous options to the PSU offense and an offense that probably handed over 10-14 points in real scoring opportunities. Take away those double killers and a spread of 7 was about right. But in sports if ifs and buts were candy and nuts applies.

First off, the writer still maintains that PSU is a better team than Iowa. This begs the question; how did Iowa beat PSU? The answer is that PSU played like Michigan did Saturday, offensively. Iowa just does not give much away and PSU was in the giving mode that particular Saturday with five turnovers.

Offensively, Moye had his moments, but did not run roughshod over the Wolverines. Royster was also held under control for the most part. Clark looked very good from the stands and for the most part was given plenty of time on key plays. The PSU tight ends are dominating, likely the best pair in the conference, maybe even nationally. Believe it, this pair is athletic and big. Quarless is a big time player. Add in Powell. Shuler, and Zug and the Lions really do have some serious weapons in the passing game. There is/was a big difference between UM and PSU regarding receivers. It is not that hard to see why many had the Lions in the top six before the Iowa loss.

The prediction was for the deep outs to hurt UM bad. This did happen on a few occasions, the first when PSU needed a play. The other prediction was for Royster to be played tough by loading the safeties and the tight end going down the seam for major damage. This certainly happened, and frankly it happened too easily. The zone blitz match up was discussed as possibly going either way and it went south with Obi covering a monster down the seam, albeit three or four yards behind in coverage. What was most unexpected was UM’s corners giving PSU easy plays for eight yards to the wideouts who were basically uncovered up to 12-15 yards.

Another key discussed was whether or not UM could pressure Clark. The answer for the most part was no, with the exception of Brandon Graham. Yes, Clark did go down a few times but this was of little consequence.

The turnovers are a plague worthy of middle age Europe, with no end in sight. The weather was a little on the foul side but really not enough to cause five turnovers. Holding the ball properly and seeing the field were the factors.

The Michigan passing game continues to press and go backwards. When Tate throws the ball to a target it is dropped, and when the receiver breaks open so wide everyone’s eyes light up, Tate throws the ball short into the ground. Then when the guys finally hit a nice 20-30 yard pattern (lately a deep out), the ball comes back because of a penalty. Add to this, bad snaps and qb fumbles, two or three times a game, and there is a pattern of more errors than completions. No passing game can withstand such inefficiency. Simply put, this team cannot run over people for four quarters running the ball 75% of the time. A passing game that is at least adequate must appear for UM to beat Illinois or Purdue.

By the way, in watching Tate warm up well before the game, he appeared to be reasonably healthy. He worked his shoulder some early in warm-ups, but that is common and not of great concern.

The team did not quit, but when given a chance to get back into the game, the chance was squandered. The biggest long term squandering was on first down. This team will likely punt if yardage is not gained on first down. There is no margin of error like in a pro passing attack. If a ball is dropped on first and ten, or if a runner is tackled behind the line, the chances for success are close to slim.

Mesko was superb and let us hope some honors come his way, he is deserving for many reasons, most of all by his performance on the field.

So what this means is that the Illinois and Purdue games provide by far the best opportunity for Michigan to gain that 6th win to become bowl eligible. And so the statement that has been made for the last three weeks still applies; Purdue and Illinois are the most important games on UM’s schedule, after Notre Dame. Illinois may turn loose the juice. He is, after all, pretty well rested. Illinois has some firepower to cause serious match-up problems for UM, regardless of how bad the Illini have played to date. Purdue is a match-up problem due to the quick hitters that demand top secondary play.

This team cannot give up and likely will not. Yes, UM has a higher standard than 6-6, but the reality of people throwing around the unreality of UM winning the next three may be a bridge too far.

The writer’s biggest concern is the recent regression in penalties, turnovers and poor execution. This is very difficult for a young team with moderate talent to turn around, not impossible but very difficult. Yes, the term moderate was thrown out indeed. There is more than moderate potential, but potential nets zero points on Saturday’s, performance does.

Thank you for reading GBMW-

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Written by Doc4Blu

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Mailbag question: Assistant coaches on the hot seat

Mailbag question: Assistant coaches on the hot seat

Is it time yet for some of the assistant coaches to be on the hot seat or will coach rod even allow such sentiment? It seems like last year many of the assistant coaches got a free pass because of how the team played and being a new system, but right now I do not see a lot of improvement in many areas.

Will some of the coaches be replaced this year or is this something that Coach Rod will take as a if they go I go type of attitude since a lot of them came with him from WV?

We have struggled getting a pass rush and have also struggled in pass coverage. Do not get me started on the LB's either ... WOW!

Hank S.


Thanks for the question.

Coaches are always on the hot seat; some are just closer to the edge than others.

We would expect there to be some changes in the defensive staff next season, exactly who and why is speculation at this time. Assistants typically have a one-year contract and most of the turnover is during the winter, just before or just after national signing day.

Much of the above will depend on whether or not Coach Robinson returns.

There are some assistants we doubt will ever be on the hot seat with Coach Rod. They have been with him for along time. It is clear that Coach Rod appreciates loyalty.

Right now, it is too early to speculate on which coaches might be in “trouble,” since the season is not near to being over and hence we do not know how UM will finish the season. For assistants the wind can blow calmly with warm air or brutally like a cold blizzard. The assistant football coach at the college and pro level is perceived as a glamorous position, but the reality is life can be tough with losses.

We could see some offensive coaches getting a little warm as well, but this part of the staff is less likely to have turnover in our opinion.

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Written by CoachBt and ErocWolverine

Mailbag question: Defensive recruiting

Mailbag question: Defensive recruiting

A recruiting question for you guys?

Do we have any recruits coming in that can play right away on defense? I realize that might be a tough question since they are not even signed yet and you haven't seen them all, but I do not think this defense will be any good next year as well?

Who will replace Brandon Graham?

What happens if Donovan Warren decides to leave? Who will replace him and will we have sufficient depth?

Please tell me the sun will come up tomorrow and that we can get a couple of defensive monsters to come play at Michigan.

Dan B.


Thanks for the question.

In our opinion the defensive recruits with the best chance of playing early are Marvin Robinson and Terrence Talbott. Not only do they play positions of need, they both have shown the skills needed to help next season.

We expect Craig Roh to get the first shot at replacing Brandon Graham in the spring practices.

If Donovan Warren does indeed leave this creates a huge hole that will be tough to fill.

We would expect the red-shirt freshmen defensive backs JT Turner, Witty (if he comes to Michigan), and the incoming freshman (whoever shakes out) to receive ample opportunity. Floyd and Boo Boo will be given first shot at corners with the others under a larger than usual microscope.

Yes at this time we are a little worried about the defense next year along with the current defensive recruiting, but we have been worried for the last couple of years especially with the talent level and the depth issues.

UM needs to find and sign some defensive linemen that can put pressure on the quarterback, without sending the kitchen sink all the time. UM needs to find linebackers that can cover in passing situations, along with filling the hole, making the right reads and making the tackle and sending the running back backwards. Also UM needs to find more speed and athleticism in the defensive backfield, which is a factor in being able to cover receivers better.

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Written by CoachBt and ErocWolverine

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