Wednesday, December 06, 2006

More on Herbie's hyperventilating

The much maligned Gary Danielson appeared on Detroit radio to defend his campaigning for the Gators. An article about the appearance can be read here. But what caught my attention was this comment by Danielson about Kirk Herbstreit:

"Kirk's a wonderful broadcaster, but my opinion is he was so wounded by the Steve Breaston comments that he jumped on the Michigan bandwagon and rode it."
I wasn't sure what he was referring to but a quick search turned up this November 1st article from the Detroit News. In it, we learn that Herbstreit characterized Michigan WR Steve Breaston as "mostly worthless". There may be a grain of truth to what Danielson says, that Herbie probably feels guilt over an unfortunate choice of words and that guilt turned him into a Michigan cheerleader.

But the most interesting thing in the article has nothing to do with Steve Breaston but what Herbie predicted would happen in the game between Michigan and OSU on November 18th.
"If those two teams were to play right now, just the way they're playing, I don't even think it would be close. Ohio State not only wins that game the way they're playing right now, maybe by a few scores."
So Herbie felt that OSU was far and away better than Michigan. My question is what did he see on November 18th that made him change his mind? As my co-blogger, Mergz, pointed out Michigan's defense got abused by OSU and only 3 OSU turnovers kept the score closer than the statistics would indicate. To that point I would argue that it was sloppy OSU play rather than stellar Michigan play that resulted in a 3 point game.

Case in point: with 44 seconds to go in the 3rd quarter Ohio State's center, Doug Datish, snapped a shotgun snap about 12 inches ON THE GROUND. Michigan recovered the fumble on the OSU 9 yard line. The Wolverines converted the unforced error by a center with a cast on his hand into 7 easy points. Interestingly, Troy Smith get charged with the fumble, go figure.

On November 18th, OSU's toughest obstacle was OSU. Herbie was right when he said OSU was a couple of scores better than Michigan. You can argue that they are couple of scores better than Florida too, but luckily college football fans will find out on January 8th rather than be subjected to a rematch that would really settle nothing.

In preparing this post I ran across this post-game quote from Mike Hart:
"I guarantee if we play, it would be a whole different game. We should have got them the first time around. We didn't. If it doesn't happen, that's our fault."
At that point, immediately after the loss to OSU, he was being realistic about it, but one has to wonder how much the talk of the rematch, before the game was even played, was in the Michigan players' heads.


Anonymous said...

People keep talking about the the 3 turnovers that Ohio State "gave" Michigan, that made the game close. One of the turnovers was a pass thrown into double-coverage by Troy smith, which got deflected and landed in the hands of a defensive line man (to be named later). Troy was under pressure by the Michigan front, check the tape. And then there are the "other" turnovers, two bad snaps by OU center Doug Datish. Is that typical of Doug Datish? Naahhh, don't think so. Has it occured to ANYONE in the nation that maybe ole Doug was getting a bit jumpy and antsy, after getting mauled by 2007 NFL top-10 draft pick 6'7" 340Lb. All-American DT Alan Branch? If Branch's domination of the Doug Datish in the trenches (check the tapes) is affecting his concentration, then that is the DEFENSE causing those turnovers. You never saw Doug Datish do that before, or any other snap issues with OSU. So yes, OSU won the game, but don't short-change UM's dominant defensive front seven; they FORCED those turnovers. Blame the secondary, if anyone.

FishFan-GatorMan said...

You can argue that Datish was intimidated into that ridiculous fumble deep in OSU territory all you want but it was an unforced error and perhaps the cast on his hand had something to do with it. You have to admit that that kind of fumble is not the same as a strip or one caused by a big hit. There was no contact.

Look at the numbers. Are you telling me that Michigan didn't get torched by OSU's offense when they weren't busy handing the ball over?

PS, Troy Smith was sacked once to Henne's 4. Whose front line defense handled whose offense?

Radog99 said...

I am saying that if you are going against a dominant All-American DT that is a top 10 pick in the NFL draft, it might affect your concentration. These plays don't happen in a vacuum. Why do you think O-linemen false start when they are getting beaten by a speeding pash rusher? It happens. They are bracing for the defense and lose concentration and false start, and fumble snaps, flich, whatever. Those are legit turnovers. Yes, Michigan's defense did get torched by OSU offense. And I'll tell you why; They were out-coached, out-schemed, whatever you want to call it. They spreaded UM's defense out and attacked the weakness, the secondary, not the front seven. They were not expecting it. Tressel surprised UM and pulled all the tricks out of the bag for that one game. Michigan would be prepared for the spread offense in the rematch and would hold Ohio State to 24 points. Michigan didn't do any tricks or schemes, they straight up ran their offense and still scored 39 points. And of course Henne will get sacked more than Troy Smith; Troy Smith is an athlete who can improvise and run if needed, Henne is not.