Nice win today by the Wolverines! 3-0! I wasn't able to be at this game, but I watched on TV. A lot of things to work on, but it was nice to see the defense step up and play well. Just a few thoughts from my vantage point.
• We made a field goal! Brendan Gibbons from the left hash 21 yards out! Take that 2010!
• Defense. Defense. Defense! Not sure when the last time we didn't give up an opponent touchdown, but long enough for me not to remember. Delaware State on 09? Just great to see the unit play well together and really get after it. I know it's EMU, but still. Anything that we can do to build some momentum, especially up front, is key. Eastern brought a pretty decent rushing game to Ann Arbor this week, so it was nice to see us only give up 236 yards total, although 207 was on the ground, but EMU is very one-dimensional that way. We gave up some big plays, but limited them as the game went on.
• Nice to welcome back Craig Roh to the defense. He got his name called a couple times today. Brandin Hawthorne has solidified himself at LB. He had a pretty nice day as well. Of course Jordan Kovacs and Kenny Demens played well. They're turning into solid performers every week. Still no Cam Gordon. Hopefully he can get back for San Diego State.
• Thomas Gordon was a beast today. Aside from the one-handed INT which really turned this game around, he was just in great position all day long. According to the stat sheet, he ended the game with 6 tackles, 1 INT and 1 fumble recovery. BTN mentioned him as the defensive standout of the game.
• Offensively, pretty much what I expected. Got off to a slow start, made some errors early. Call it a hangover from last week. Thanks to the defense for keeping it from possibly getting ugly. But once the offense settled down, things looked good.
• Denard is...well, Denard. Borges knew it was time to unleash his playmaker in the second quarter. He got away from his original gameplan and started to let Denard do what he does best...and that is make plays with his feet. But his TD throws to Koger early and then Dileo in the second half were nice. Lack of accuracy throwing downfield early in games has plagued Denard so far this season. He overshot a few receivers.
• I like the way we spread the ball around with the running backs. Vincent Smith and Fitz Toussaint ran well once the line started giving them some lanes to run through. Smith ended the game with 9 carries for 118 yards and Fitz had 11 rushes for 48 yards and 1 TD. Of course Denard added 198 yards on the ground and another TD.
• Special teams looked ok. Matt Wile had a rough day punting. 3 punts with a 35 yard average. We squibbed some kickoffs...I assume to keep Corey Welch from burning us which he did a couple times. Kickoff coverage, I feel, is going to be an adventure as the season progresses. I like Gallon returning kickoffs. He has a bit of that Breaston elusiveness that we all remember.
All in all, a win is a win. If you're excited about this game, then you must get easily excited. Much like when you play a game like this and you're a 28 point favorite, there are things you like to see, and things you see that you need to work on. That was how this game played out. Would have liked to have seen more backups in this game, but the slow start kept Michigan from being able to sub as much as I'm sure they wanted in the second half.
Btw, as I type this Michigan State is trailing Notre Dame 14-10 in the second quarter. This could be a fun game to watch...although I have no idea who to cheer for???
So...we're 3-0! And now it's time to enjoy the rest of this beautiful Saturday and focus on San Diego State for next week! Go Blue!
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