Michigan vs. Penn State Awards

Michigan vs. Penn State Awards

November 24, 2015

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Jehu Chesson. I only say this because Chesson appeared to hurt his shoulder when he was mugged in the process of earning a pass interference call. He fell hard on his left elbow in the endzone after throwing up his arms in exasperation. Michigan needs Chesson and his speed to beat Ohio State. He has 7 touchdowns over his last four games, and he had 4 catches for 69 yards – along with a 20-yard run – before he left Saturday’s game. He also recovered a muffed punt.

Let’s see less of this guy on offense . . . the referee announcing false start penalties and snap infractions. The pre-snap penalties for the past two weeks have been infuriating.

Let’s see more of this guy on defense . . . Taco Charlton as a 4-3 defensive end. I don’t like the idea of Charlton playing Buck linebacker, as some people have suggested, because I don’t think he holds much value as a guy who moves around, blitzes from various spots, etc. However, with Michigan’s current personnel, I think they’re best served by running a 4-3 with Charlton – who was previously a backup – out there along with Maurice Hurst, Jr., Willie Henry, and Chris Wormley. Those are their best four linemen. Michigan needs to be intelligent with how they rotate, because the backups are pretty weak. But at this point in the year, everyone is as conditioned as they’re going to be, and they might have to play a few more snaps than what is ideal simply because you want your best vs. their best.

Let’s see less of this guy on defense . . . the referee announcing offsides penalties, defensive holding, etc. Again, the pre-snap penalties are ridiculous. An occasional pass interference penalty or offsides call is to be expected, but Michigan was penalized 13 times for 117 yards last week. (Michigan’s record for penalties is 15 in one game.)

Play of the game . . . Jarrod Wilson tracking down Saquon Barkley. Penn State started off the game with a 56-yard run by freshman running back Barkley, and some teams would have been facing a 7-0 deficit just a couple plays into the game. Wilson was Michigan’s deep safety, and he didn’t have an angle as Barkley broke through the line, but Wilson sprinted to track him down around the 5-yard line. Michigan held on for three consecutive plays and forced Penn State to settle for a field goal, a 3-0 lead, and disappointment.

MVP of the game . . . Jake Rudock. Rudock was very efficient against a tough front seven. Penn State was giving up just 159 yards/game through the air, and Rudock finished with 256 yards on 25/38 passing (65.8%) for 2 touchdowns and 1 interception. The running game was going nowhere (2.9 yards/carry on 30 attempts), but Rudock spread the ball around to nine different receivers. The main trio of tight end Jake Butt and wide receivers Jehu Chesson and Amara Darboh combined for 16 catches, 203 yards, and 2 touchdowns.


  1. Avatar
    Comments: 183
    Joined: 9/3/2015
    suduri xusai
    Nov 24, 2015 at 9:58 AM

    I hope Rudock tops Devin Gardner’s performance against Ohio thugs in 2013. All I want for early Christmas is to beat Ohio State.

  2. Lanknows
    Comments: 5998
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Nov 24, 2015 at 11:20 AM

    Can’t argue with Rudock as MVP, even in a game with a lot of standout performances. Chesson has been huge, so his health is critical.

    Love that you gave the play of the game to Wilson. That open field tackle was HUGE. That’s the kind of thing I think we’ll miss next year. Peppers/Thomas/Hill are all probably a little better athletes than Wilson, but there’s huge value in a senior who knows where to be and takes the right angle. Great game from Wilson.

    The point about the 4-3 and Charlton is a good one I think. It’s clearly M’s best alignment given their clear-cut top 4, at least until Godin is healthy and back to playing like he was earlier in the year. But then your depth… I think the DL needs to rotate pretty steadily and RJS isn’t big enough for weakside end in anything other than a pure pass-rush situation. Godin’s health is huge here, if he can give some rest to Wormley and Henry that makes the 4-3 viable. If he’s getting blown off the ball then we might have to go back to the Buck/stunt stuff.

    Ojemudia was a guy who could line up at Buck OR End. Charlton and RJS/Ross are not. Michigan may need to run some of their base 3-DL defense with RJS in, just to keep our DL a bit more fresh. But yeah, hopefully we can control the clock a bit to keep our DL fresh against OSU. That seemed to be MSU’s recipe for success, but it’s tough with our running game struggling.

    This is the game of the year. No holding back now. Peppers on offense. Gutty performances by the DL. If Mone can help, even on 10 plays, you play him. etc.

  3. Avatar
    Comments: 1307
    Joined: 8/13/2015
    Nov 24, 2015 at 12:53 PM

    If it were me, and I were Durkin/Mattison and company, I’d be giving serious thought to running George Perles’ Steel Curtain 4-3 thing some, especially on running downs. I’d have my quick tackle breathing right in the OSU center’s ear pre snap, cause a pile of bodies inside and keep Morgan clean to run to the football and hit people. I think that we have exactly the right kind of group up front to pull it off and then some.

    Sure Dez Morgan ain’t Jack Lambert, or even Percy Snow for that matter, but he has nice instincts, takes very few bad steps and brings some thump with him when he get’s there. But mostly I think it would work because the last time Ol’ Urban saw that thing, he went outside for a catch after the game with his dad … or whoever it was that Urban had his catch with. That might be true for just about everybody at this game on Saturday, with the notable exceptions of Greg Mattison ….. and ….. you know ….. me.

    I used to see Sparty play a lot back in the day. Percy Snow made a gazillion tackles, maybe two gazillion if you round upward, mostly because nobody ever got through to put a hat on him ….. ever. He had no idea even what it was to get chipped. He’d just roam back and forth and hit your running back in the mouth while your guy was trying to pick his way through fallen linemen. I say, let them try to run outside zone schemes while stepping over piles of bodies. I think our LBs would feast.

    Just sayin’.

  4. Avatar
    Comments: 1
    Joined: 11/25/2015
    Nov 24, 2015 at 7:39 PM

    can anyone provide background as to why Thomas Rawls was not a good fit at Michigan? he has played well with the Seahawks (and at Central Michigan) and I’m interested in knowing why the coaches didn’t see him as a good fit. Our RBs when he was here were not that good.


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