Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Sugar Bowl bullets

I'm sure there's some narrative to be written about last night. Maybe there's something about Junior Hemingway's emotional post-game speech, but it hasn't come to me yet. Last night was terribawesome. This is the emotion I can muster. For now, though, bullet:
  • That Brendan Gibbons winning field goal almost makes up for the last three years of awful special teams play. The best part was that you kind of felt like he was going to make it. That's an awesome feeling.

    Howeva, it seems like the refs missed false start calls on Gibbons on both the yackety sax "fake" field goal and the game winner. He was called for that stutter step earlier in the year, but the refs let it go in this game. I do not know why. Probably because our helmets have wings.
  • Al Borges had a truly awful game last night. He was sort of in a Mattison Ohio mood: He came into the game with a gameplan, it wasn't working, and he just wasn't adjusting. Michigan was running on nearly every first down this game and the Hokies were loading the box with sometimes 10 defenders. This is the biggest reason for the offense being completely awful.

    The other reason, and I know I said I wasn't going to complain about this anymore, but deal with it, Borges is truly an idiot for not throwing bubble screens. For most of the game, Virginia Tech wasn't even covering the Michigan wide receivers because they knew Michigan a) wouldn't throw the bubble and b) were planning on running directly into their strength. Borges needs to put this one behind him.
  • Mike Martin and Ryan Van Bergen, and perhaps more importantly, the Virginia Tech offensive line, were as advertised. The interior of that offensive line is dysfunctional. Martin and Van Bergen were three yards into the backfield on basically every running play. The only reason they can pass block is that they keep retreating into Logan Thomas, at least long enough for him to zip a pass to one of his many wide receivers. I have no idea how a team with an offensive line that bad can win 11 games.
  • Still not sold on David Wilson, and his 24-carry, 84-yard day is about what was expected. Mitigating factors apply (terrible offensive line), sure, but outside of the one carry that Wilson turned from a two-yard loss to an eight-yard gain, he didn't really get many yards that weren't made for him by outflanking the defense with blockers. Wilson looks like a backup Wisconsin running back: runs behind his pads and plays to power, but can't will a team to victory that's not getting blocking advantages on the outside.
  • Logan Thomas, however, remains a scary dude. He's huge and semi-mobile and makes great throws. His two late-game first down scrambles were both Mike Martin's fault for not maintaining gap integrity, but Thomas was smart enough to see the holes and pick up big yardage. His YPA numbers are pretty uninspiring because the team ran a lot of hot read checkdowns on Michigan blitzes, but Thomas played an incredible game. Except for...
  • Next up: Danny Coale. Good receiver. That wasn't a catch in overtime. There is no debate about this.
  • Blake Countess had trouble defending double moves all year. Virginia Tech took note and attacked him all game. Countess fluctuated between awful freshmen mistakes and being in perfect position. He'll be good.
These are all the thoughts I can muster right now. There will be more coverage throughout the week, including the typical game breakdown with play analysis etc. It might be a little later than usual, though, because I didn't even think to look for a torrent of the game last night. Hopefully someone has one up tonight. Knowing the Michigan blogosphere, I'm sure it's already up.


P_lll said...

Borges an idiot? smh...

This is what happens when fans and internet blogger heroes think they know more than coaches. We're not running a spread-option offense anymore. The bubble screen and constraint plays went out the door with Rich Rodriguez. If that pisses you off, then take it up with David Brandon for hiring a coach who doesn't wish to run the spread. Expecting a coach to run an offense thta isn't his is unfair, and, quite frankly, dumb. This ain't xbox, chief.

Chris Gaerig said...

The bubble screen is a football play. Michigan State runs it, and yet they do not run a spread offense. This isn't about constraint plays or read options. This is about punishing a defense for blatantly disregarding some of your offensive personnel. There will be a post about this later in the week, almost assuredly.

jemblue said...

To disagree with the coaches is fine, but to say "Borges is truly an idiot" for not running one particular play is going way overboard. Borges's long track record shows that he is anything but an idiot.

J Mazur said...

Enough said. Even refs make mistakes. Game is still over, but it was a catch.

Chris Gaerig said...

You can't prove your point with a single screenshot. That's not how arguments work. The evidence:

Post a Comment