Michigan vs. Maryland Awards

Michigan vs. Maryland Awards


November 14, 2017

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Michael Onwenu. Freshman Cesar Ruiz has been playing in place of an injured Onwenu, and while Ruiz has done okay, I think Onwenu has reached a point where he’s a solid right guard. Early in the year, he was struggling with his technique and conditioning, but now that he’s worked his way into game shape, he should be capable of playing an entire contest.

Hit the jump for the rest of the awards.

Let’s see less of this guy on offense . . . Kareem Walker. Walker is a hit-or-miss guy right now, and his play is normal for a young running back. He has yet to truly adjust to the speed of the college game, and he’s not a speed back who can get the edge whenever he feels like it. He’s a north-south runner who needs to keep his shoulders square to the line of scrimmage, and he was unable to do that on Saturday (7 carries, 23 yards).

Let’s see more of this guy on defense . . . Lavert Hill. Hill missed the second half of Saturday’s game with a concussion, and he was replaced by Brandon Watson, who did fine. But Michigan needs all hands on deck to beat Wisconsin and Ohio State, and that includes Hill, who’s tied for the team lead in passes defended (8) and interceptions (2). Wisconsin is #10 in the Big Ten in yards passing per game, but they’re #2 in passing efficiency.

Let’s see less of this guy on defense . . . the trainer. Lavert Hill, Rashan Gary, David Long, and Mike McCray II all left Saturday’s game with injuries. Most of the injuries seem relatively minor, but the Wolverines are already an underdog in the final two weeks and winning will be made even more difficult if those guys continue to be hampered by nagging physical problems.

Play of the game . . . Brandon Peters’s dumpoff to Karan Higdon for 35 yards. Scrambling out of the pocket with some likelihood of taking a sack, Peters found running back Higdon, who had leaked out of the backfield when he saw his QB in trouble. Higdon caught the ball, dodged a couple tacklers while reversing field, and turned nothing into a 35-yard gain.

MVP of the game . . . Maurice Hurst, Jr. Even though Maryland ended up outgaining Michigan, 340-305, the Michigan defense was the biggest difference between the two teams. Hurst was once again dominant up front and ended the game with 9 tackles, 1.5 tackles for loss, and 1 sack.

11 comments

  1. Comments: 105
    Joined: 12/19/2015
    Extrajuice
    Nov 14, 2017 at 11:59 AM

    Thanks Thunder. BTW – Did your team win it’s playoff game last week?

    • Comments: 2223
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Nov 14, 2017 at 4:11 PM

      Unfortunately, our season is finished. We’ll try again next year.

    • Comments: 121
      Joined: 8/12/2015
      coachernie
      Nov 14, 2017 at 6:08 PM

      We’re still in the mix. I help as I can… no longer a main cog in the machine!

  2. Lanknows
    Comments: 3600
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Lanknows
    Nov 14, 2017 at 12:17 PM

    Nice work. I agree 100% with all of these.

    I wouldn’t expect Walker to touch the ball much against Wisc or OSU unless things get out of hand. This staff does like to spread the ball around though. We’ll see if that means Walker, Issac, or a change to more Higdon/Evans.

    Gary is the guy on the injured list we’d miss most, but it sounds like that’s not a big worry for the next 2 games.

    Michigan has been very lucky with injuries this season beyond losing Speight (a huge qualifier, obviously). You’re always going to lose some guys but our D has stayed very healthy thusfar and the guys lost on offense (besides, again, Speight) have generally had quality replacements for their role. At least in theory – we haven’t seen DPJ totally replace Black, but it’s a little hard to tell with the QB situation.

    • Comments: 121
      Joined: 8/12/2015
      coachernie
      Nov 14, 2017 at 6:01 PM

      I worry about giving Issac touches with his tendency to fumble. He has been out of action and “untouched” for awhile.. we need a turnover free performance if we have any chance.
      Let Higdon and Evans take the snaps, heck throw in a few FB dives with Poggi and company too (wonder why we haven’t seen more of that this year?).

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 3600
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Nov 15, 2017 at 1:22 AM

        I agree. I want to see Higdon, Evans, Hill, and McDoom carry the ball.

        Isacc is the RB version of O’Korn.

  3. Comments: 2
    Joined: 8/25/2017
    Stew Gotz
    Nov 14, 2017 at 1:00 PM

    Hill is the one I worry about not playing. Kid is a stud for being such young player. Hornibrook is prone to throw 50/50 balls which have. Kids thrown 12 picks already.
    Obviously you want to win with your best players but the upside with injuries is you get to develop depth thru game experience

    Go Blue!

    • Lanknows
      Comments: 3600
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Lanknows
      Nov 14, 2017 at 3:32 PM

      Yes Hill’s been great and would be missed. Much bigger issue for OSU than Wisc IMO.

      • Comments: 121
        Joined: 8/12/2015
        coachernie
        Nov 14, 2017 at 6:03 PM

        No OSU will slice up our soft middle like a Thanksgiving turkey.

  4. Comments: 948
    Joined: 8/13/2015
    Roanman
    Nov 14, 2017 at 2:10 PM

    I have yet to sit with this game, and didn’t see the play that Hill went out on, so maybe this comment isn’t apropos in this instance, but ….. I’m really impressed with the wrap and twist thing that’s showing up lately, especially for corners and safeties.

    I think it does two things for you. First and most importantly, it’s protects heads. But I’m thinking an ancillary benefit is that it also improves tackling on two levels. First … again … it promotes accuracy. Guys aren’t coming in and blinking because they know it’s a collision. Rather, they are shooting at the hips/knees and avoiding the punishing hit. Secondly, the twist thing tends to cause guys to fall sideways rather than forward.

    I was taught to put my face on the numbers, hit, lift and carry. That’s damn near a guaranteed concussion should you be a willing hitter. Which I was until I hit my good friend Gene in practice on day exactly as coached. I gave up an easy 50 lbs to Gene. I hit him hard coming through the hole with the as coached technique and “got my bell rung” but good.

    Yeah, yeah, “Which explains things quite nicely.” I will tell you without embarrassment that from that day forward, i was the single best ankle tackler in all of the state of Michigan. At least at the high school level.

    I love a good hit on them as much as the next guy, maybe more, but I really like it when my guys line up for the game.

    • Comments: 121
      Joined: 8/12/2015
      coachernie
      Nov 14, 2017 at 6:05 PM

      Really, some of this is over the top. In my day we used the old smelling salts and got them back out there quick as possible.
      The Team… the Team… the Team!!

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