Saturday, October 09, 2010

UM-MSU: Not ready for prime time just yet

We live in a society dominated by alphabet references within our language. The Twitter generation has perfected a separate language all its own, thanks to texting and miniscule keyboards on hand-held computers we used to call phones.
Since I am old school, I still don’t fully understanding half of what “lol” or “lhmo” or “bff” or “omg” pretends to represent. I deal in complete words, but I’ll give it a try in summarizing the 34-17 home loss by Michigan to Michigan State (which could WELL run the table and cause a massive controversy in the BCS – Bullshit Contrived System – since Sparty avoids meeting Ohio State).
Broken down into some familiar three-letter combinations is the analysis of the Battle for that stupid looking Paul Bunyan Trophy (don’t Minnesota and Wisconsin battle for his axe?) How can you have TWO trophies named after one fictional character?
PPT – Piss Poor tackling. It’s been a problem all season and it was in full evidence against MSU – constantly missing tackles because shoulder hits are NO substitutes for wrapping up and bringing down ballcarriers. I’ll need a voicebox transplant from screaming at my TV set about this major annoyance/problem. The defense played well in spurts, actually better than most of the first five games, but it cannot afford to make such mistakes when so obviously lacking in terms of talent.
SAP – Silly ass penalties. Both of the Spartans’ first two touchdown runs, from long distance, were directly aided by stupid face masking flags. There were also chop blocks, late hits and unsportsmanlike calls – all of which aided the train wreck to come. If it continues, Michigan’s chances of winning its remaining games will dwindle.
DDT – Denard’s damn turnovers. He had three; the D got none. “Nuff said!
INT – Interceptions, not touchdowns. Logically, Michigan should have led 14-0 in the first quarter when the offense was actually controlling ALL the action. But we knocked twice and threw our chances away – both passes were mistakes by Robinson, who had the shine on his Heisman Trophy rubbed off quite a bit. He looked human, which was a good thing in the long run but not in the 60 minutes against the Spartans. For the most part, they contained him.
DPS – Dropped Passes Suck. How many dropped balls? Five? Six? More? Three in a row? Two for potential touchdowns?
NPR – No Power Rushing. Michigan has NO running back capable of getting third-and-short yardage on his own. Michigan State had three. Michigan was outgained on the day 261-160 and again, Robinson outgained the other the four Wolverine rushers.
In fact, so ineffective was the ground attack, that only ONE UM runner (Vincent Smith), other than Robinson, even had a carry in the entire second half. That’s not exactly a vote of confidence.
TNT – T’wernt No Turnovers. Michigan never even came close to producing a Spartan turnover. MSU never came close to fumbling and no pass was ever in a threatening position for an interception.
OCB – Out coached bigtime. Anyone want to counter this fact? Mark Dantonio, despite blood clots and heart attacks, STILL did a better job of coaching his squad than Rich Rodriguez. His offense didn’t look as flashy but it was efficient, capable and well-executed. When needed, he pulled off a trick play and it succeeded.
His defensive scheme bottled up Robinson and basically forced him to become a thrower – the right blueprint for all opposing defenses against Michigan. His halftime adjustments were better than Michigan’s.
MSU – Much Superior Unit. Michigan State dominated most aspects of the game; offensive line, defensive secondary, kicking/return game and ability to avoid mistakes. On this afternoon, they WERE the better team.
TRW – Toxic Rivalry Win. Sorry, but beating Notre Dame is NOT the same as defeating Michigan State. And football is not the same as basketball, so critics, don’t count all the MSU wins on the hardcourt to a once-a-year football game. Apples and oranges only make fruit salad and smoothies, not effective arguments.
However, until Rich Rodriguez scores a major rivalry win (MSU or Ohio State), NO season will qualify as successful – period!
ICE – Iowa Comes Excited. The Hawks have a chance to ruin U-M’s homecoming (which it has done often in the last two decades) and destroy all the good that the first five games delivered to the Wolverine program.
BCS – Before Collapse Begins. Michigan’s entire season is on the line on Saturday because a loss would only stoke the fires of destruction that took place one year ago. After the MSU’s overtime loss, U-M never won another game and, if the same thing happens this season, it could spell the end for Coach Rodriguez, as well as disintegrate all the recruiting victories secured up to this point.
SRT – Sun Rises Tomorrow. There is always hope; there is always tomorrow when practice begins and mistakes can be corrected. Personnel cannot be changed, which means the defense remains porous and the ground game is still one-dimensional (Robinson). But the squad must suck it up and play like there IS no tomorrow; because, in reality, there is no other game on the 2010 schedule then this one (you cannot get to Ohio State or Wisconsin without beating Iowa).
EOS – End of story.

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