Michigan 24, Army 21

Tag: Ronnie Bell


7Sep 2019
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Michigan 24, Army 21

Zach Charbonnet (image via Maize ‘n’ Brew)

Phew. I saw people mentioning the 2007 Appalachian State game on Twitter. However, I couldn’t stop thinking about the 2013 game against Akron. As the game went along, I felt like Michigan was going to pull it out with a goal line stand or just an outstanding play by the defense. Not because they’re great, but because they’re better than Army. In that 2013 Akron game, Jarrod Wilson ended the game with an interception. In the 2019 Army version, it was Kwity Paye with a sack and a fumble.

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1Sep 2019
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Michigan 40, Middle Tennessee 21

Zach Charbonnet (image via Detroit News)

There’s a lot that we could get into with the new offense, so I think it might be best to just go position-by-position on that side of the ball.

The two-quarterback thing needs to be nixed. Jim Harbaugh and Josh Gattis are probably trying to make Dylan McCaffrey happy by putting him on the field with Shea Patterson, but it’s a bad move. The offense isn’t in sync when both are on the field. Whoever’s behind center is late getting the play off, and then they threw an inside screen to McCaffrey, who was immediately swarmed under by big guys. Why put your lanky backup QB in a situation where he catches a ball three yards away from 250+ pound defensive linemen and linebackers?

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5Aug 2019
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2019 Season Countdown: #27 Ronnie Bell

Ronnie Bell (image via MGoBlue)

Thanks to Clay and Stephan for the generous Paypal donations over the weekend!

Name: Ronnie Bell
Height:
6’0″
Weight:
184 lbs.
High school:
Kansas City (MO) Park Hill
Position:
Wide receiver
Class:
Sophomore
Jersey number:
#8
Last year:
I ranked Bell #95 and said he would redshirt (LINK). He had 8 catches for 145 yards and 2 touchdowns.
TTB Rating:
71

For those of you longing for the return of Steve Breaston, I think you may have found a reasonable facsimile in Ronnie Bell. Bell is a slightly built, slippery slot receiver who has the ability to break away without ever really looking like a blazing runner. Bell played early and often as a true freshman, and he figured into the team’s plans in many ways. He caught the ball (8 catches for 145 yards and 2 TD), ran the ball (5 carries for -2 yards), returned punts (2 returns for 7 yards), and returned kickoffs (2 returns for 53 yards). Not bad for a wide receiver who was a recruiting afterthought.

But not great, either. Bell got some jet sweeps despite not having great speed to really threaten the defense to the edge, and I think Michigan’s staff just wasn’t sure how to use him. They wanted some Eddie McDoom or Jehu Chesson jet sweep magic, but Bell just doesn’t quite have that explosion. I think Josh Gattis will have a better idea of how to use Bell, and it also helps that Bell will have spent another year in the weight program. With a guy like him who has a natural ability and willingness to shake off tacklers, a little bit of extra strength should benefit him.

It’s a mighty large jump to go from #95 to #27 in one year. Part of that is because of the promise Bell showed, but it also represents Michigan’s slightly shaky wide receiver situation. I had Bell ranked here even before Oliver Martin’s transfer, and a big reason is that Tarik Black just hasn’t shown that he can stay healthy. Even with the arrival of Mike Sainristil and other touted freshman receivers, having a guy who spent the spring in the system (unlike Cornelius Johnson, George Johnson III, and Giles Jackson) should help him plug in various places if necessary. For now I expect Bell to be a backup in the slot, but he can help in so many ways that a top-30 ranking seems right.

Prediction: Backup slot receiver/punt returner/kickoff returner

9Oct 2018
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Michigan vs. Maryland Awards

Shea Patterson (image via ClickOnDetroit)

Let’s see more of this guy on offense . . . Ronnie Bell. The freshman wide receiver is making plays when given the opportunity. He caught a long touchdown pass from Dylan McCaffrey a couple weeks ago, and this week he caught a crossing route from Shea Patterson that turned into a catch-and-run touchdown. Michigan needs to keep the receivers healthy, so it’s good that Bell is getting some snaps so he (and others) can be available down the stretch.

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23Sep 2018
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Michigan 56, Nebraska 10

This wasn’t deemed a penalty until much deliberation (image via Lincoln Journal Star)

That was unexpected. Nebraska isn’t very good this season, but I still thought Michigan would struggle. I predicted a 24-17 game in which the Wolverines would play down to the level of the Cornhuskers. I was wrong. Michigan’s defense played superb football, and the offensive line was overwhelmed the whole day. It also helped that Nebraska quarterback Adrian Martinez was not up to full speed after getting hurt against Colorado; he wore a knee brace and only seemed to be operating at 75% or so. Michigan’s offense was also clicking at a higher level than they have been, and that’s a credit to them. Nebraska’s defense shouldn’t have been as out of sync as the offense, but a Michigan offense that had been struggling in many ways really took it to them.

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