Friday, October 2, 2015

Lazy Man's Michigan Preview: Maryland


Screw the hurricane! It’s time for some B1G action!!!

(22) Michigan Wolverines (3-1, 0-0 B1G) @ Maryland Terrapins (2-1, 2-2 B1G)
Byrd Stadium Saturday, 10/3 Noon ET, BTN

Offense
In preparation for this game I forced myself to watch the Maryland vs West Virginia game last weekend. That only lasted one half due to the Mountaineers dominance and 38-0 score. A quick glance at the game recap later in the day confirmed this was a good idea.

What I saw during that half of play was West Virginia gashing Maryland up the gut gaining yard after easy yard on the ground. If you have seen Michigan over the last three weeks you have seen the offensive line pound the crap out of opposing defensive front sevens, eights and sometimes nines. This is a good thing, people.

I foresee a lot of De’Veon Smith in isolation against safeties or cornerbacks which indicates Michigan’s offense is humming. And if Joaquin brings Bad Jake Rudock within its stormy offerings, then all should still be fine with the offense.

Oh, and whatever you do, DO NOT PUNT TO WILL LIKELY!

Defense
Another week. Another spread offense.

Michigan has damn near perfected their nickel and, as they showed last week, dime packages. Dealing with the Terps’ spread shouldn’t be a problem.

Maryland’s featured running back, Brandon Ross, rattled off 130 yards against the Mountaineers’ surprisingly good defense, but five interceptions thrown by Maryland’s two competing quarterbacks prevented their offense from gaining any momentum in the game.

So, yes, Michigan is gifted another shaky QB situation. This is a good thing for the secondary and let’s hope the weather holds up long enough to let Maryland try and sling it around a bit.

I don’t think it applies to the defense, but I really want to emphasize this point: Do not punt to Will Likely, please.

Special Teams
Kenny Allen is rounding in to a pretty reliable kicker, which shores up one of the question marks coming into the season for Michigan.

Don’t punt to Likely

The punt return team keeps inching closer and closer to a block and if conditions deteriorate, it could finally happen this weekend.

Also, don’t punt to Likely

I’m sure Blake O’Neill learned the proper times to take off running on fake punts after last week, so let’s put that concern to rest.

Seriously, don’t punt to Likely

I guess the only final thing to say here is:

DO NOT PUNT TO WILL LIKELY!!!

Prediction
Look, this shouldn’t be a test for the Wolverines. Maryland is a not good team and Michigan has better athletes and certainly the better coaching staff. But we are talking about Michigan, on the road, in hurricane weather conditions, so anything can happen.

(Don’t punt to Likely)

The defense is flirting with elite status and the offense isn’t killing them like it has the previous two years. This team is built to win on the road. Look back at the Utah game whereiIf Bad Jake Rudock didn’t show up, the Wolverines get out of Salt Lake with a “W”. Maryland is nowhere near Utah. Hell they’re not even BYU.

(Don’t punt to Likely)

Provided many, many, weird things do not happen, I expect Michigan to be running its Vanilla Offense by the start of the third quarter. The defense should dominate again and the offense will show more progress with a huge day on the ground.

And for the love of everything good and holy, if you have to punt,

DO NOT PUNT TO WILL LIKELY!!


Michigan 38 - 0

No comments: