Holy sheet-balls children. "By the hair of our chinny-chin-chin" is the only mantra that you should be repeating. Oh, and if you haven't already, please send Coach Fitzgerald a nice fruit-basket with a good bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon with it. This would be to thank him for politely refusing to accept us trying to hand the game to him for almost four quarters. Sign it "Your BFF - Lil' Red."
So we tripped over our own dicks this last Saturday and almost went down right on our ass. To be fair, given the way we played we sure as hell didn't deserve the win. I must confess I felt conflicted watching us score the go ahead TD. I wasn't sure if I should be happier that we won, or angrier that we were even in this position in the first place. Part of me has accepted that this is who we are and have been for years: a mistake-prone, undisciplined, unfocused team that has to come from behind because we can't get the hell out of our own way. We have yet to play a game this year where we haven't turned the ball over at least twice (except for our first game). Again, it's part of who we are now, and it's not going to magically change in the course of six days. If we want to win, we have to be "+" in the turnover column. If it's even or minus, it's going to be a long night.
Oh, and what's even more disturbing is that we had two weeks to prepare for Northwestern and we came out looking like we did. We only got one week for Michigan. Yeah...
Game 8: University of Michigan Wolverines
October 27th, 2012 | 7:00 PM CT
Memorial Stadium | Lincoln, NE
Announcers: Play-by-Play - Mark Jones Color Commentator -Brock Huard
Sideline Reporter - Jessica Mendoza
NOTE: No ABC coverage even in the Midwest. The Oklahoma / Notre-Dame game receives that honor.
Michigan Wolverines Blog: Maize N Brew
Michigan Wolverines Team Stats at CFBstats.com
ESPN College Football: Michigan Wolverines vs. Nebraska Cornhuskers Preview
Washington Post: Michigan-Nebraska Preview Capsule
Husker Mike's Pre-Season and Game Preview
Corn Nation: How Will Nebraska Stop Denard Robinson?
Last Week: Defeated Michigan State Spartans 12 - 10
Michigan Wolverines Coaches and Personnel
Head Coach: Brady Hoke, 2nd Season. Record: 16 - 4, (Overall 63 - 54)
Offensive Coordinator: Al Borges
Defensive Coordinator: Greg Mattison
This is a great staff. In my opinion, probably Top 15 or even Top 10. Highly experienced.
QB - Denard Robinson, SR. Last Week: 14 - 29, 163 Yds, 1 INT, 20 Carries, 96 Yds
Our 3rd mobile QB in 4 weeks. Denard is obviously more dangerous than Colter and more durable than Miller. He has to be with the number of shots he takes over the course of a single game. He can't throw nearly as well as either of them though, so obviously that's what we want to force him to do. Borges will spread us out and run him probably 15 - 20 times. If they're successful doing that, that will really kick their play action passing game into over-drive and that's where they can really donkey punch us. He can throw it well enough with little to no pressure off of play action. If you doubt that, watch our game from last year. The counter to this would be to attack, attack, and attack: man on the outside, Cover 0 and blitz every down. However, that's not Bo's way so I expect that we'll roll 80% of the time with our Cover 2, 40 front look and hope like hell we can contain him. This of course will be while he scrambles for 7 - 10 yards an attempt, and then when we finally decide to bring pressure, they'll torch us over top off of play action. Wash, rinse, repeat. Be prepared for feelings of angst, anger, frustration. Basically just be prepared to go full emo and hate everything. Just please don't cut yourself.
RB - Fitzgerald Toussaint, JR (RS). Last Week: 10 carries, 52 yds.
Hasn't carried the ball much this year: only 81 carries for 283 yds on the season. He has scored 4 TDs however, so we can't just simply ignore him. If we do, he does have the ability to make us pay for focusing entirely on Shoelace Robinson. We really can't afford to have either guy get going. Just that simple.
LB - Jake Ryan, SO. Last Week: 10 Tkls, 8 Solo, 2 Asst, 1 TFL
Leader on the team in tackles with 39 and TFL with 8.5. Definitely a guy that we'll keep track of. Michigan's defense is stout...the toughest one we've played so far this year. He's part of the reason for it.
DB - Jordan Kovacs, SR. Last Week: 5 Tkls, 3 Solo, 2 Asst.
One of their starting safeties who is also on the Bronco Nagurski Trophy watch list for best defensive player. He'll be playing center field and will pick off T-Mart if he's errant on some of his throws like he was last week. Don't expect this guy to follow Northwestern's model for defensive excellence and drop a sure pick.