Monday, September 24, 2012

What We Know - Football in Michigan

Michigan Expats - Commentary - See All Commentary
By Doctor

I did not write a football preview for the Lions, Spartans, or Wolverines this year. I didn’t get around to it, but more importantly, I didn’t think that what I had to add would provide any value to our readers. I didn’t have any special insight and I didn’t need to go on record making uninformed predictions.

However, after four weeks into the college season and three weeks of NFL action, I do have some observations and opinions of Michigan football teams that may actually be somewhat funny and informative that are worth writing down and sharing.

What We Know – Detroit Lions
We know a lot more about the Lions after week 3 than we did before the season after Sunday’s incredible wasted comeback against the Tennessee Titans. The Lions are off to an 1-2 start, but it’s not time to panic, unless Matthew Stafford’s MRI comes back with bad news and Calvin Johnson falls victim to the Madden Curse.
1. The Lions probably will not win the Super Bowl, but will be frustratingly entertaining to watch. Well, mostly frustrating if the defense and special teams don’t remarkably improve.
2. Jason Hanson is immortal. I’m pretty sure that Hanson, informed and inspired by Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, lead an expedition to recover the grail and found a way to carry it across the seal. Hanson doesn’t share it since it is the first major form of comeback kickers have ever had against position players.
3. The 2012 Detroit Lions have a power running game with Mikel LeShoure which could be the difference in making the playoffs and even winning a playoff game. Once they figure this out, combined with the best red zone weapon in the game, Calvin Johnson, the Lions’ offense shouldn’t have to settle for so many field goals.

College Football After the Jump... 



What We Know – Michigan Wolverines
Michigan is 2-2. They handily beat UMass, survived an Air Force drone strike, fell victim to Roll Tide, and lost an ugly game to Notre Dame, who unfortunately, may be good this year. So what do we know about the Wolverines heading into Big Ten play?
4. The Wolverines were ridiculously overrated in the preseason. Again, why I didn’t do a preseason column and why preseason polls are stupid.
5. Denard Robinson is the new Oprah: “You can an interception. YOU GET AN INTERCEPTION. And you get an interception.” If you haven’t received your Michigan logo’d football from Denard yet, don’t worry, it’ll wobbly fall into your lap sometime in the next nine weeks.
6. Denard “Shoelace” Robinson remains one of the most exciting and entertaining playmakers in college football. He won’t win the Heisman, but he could make enough big plays to lead the Wolverines to a Legends division title in an embarrassingly weak Big Ten.

What We Know – Michigan State Spartans
The 3-1 heading into Big Ten conference play this week at home against Ohio State, but still have as many questions as answers.
7. Wide Receiver U – former site of Andre Rison, Kirk Gibson, Derrick Mason, Mushin Mohammed, Plaxico Burriss, Charles Rogers, Matt Trannon, Devin Thomas, and B.J. Cunningham – doesn’t have a single wide out that can catch the football. It’s embarrassing and threatens to prevent the Spartans from returning to the Big Ten Championship game. At least we don’t have to watch Denard Robinson try to throw passes to the Michigan State wide receivers.
8. Despite playing an injured offensive line that often seems incapable of making proper line calls, Le’Veon Bell can carry the Spartans offense.
9. The defense is all it was cracked up to be in the preseason and has a chance to be great. A great defense and the running game of Bell could still be enough to carry the Spartans through a weak Big Ten and to the Rose Bowl.

What We Know – MAC & Division II Football 
10. Central Michigan has the best road win of the teams in the state of Michigan after scoring 9 points in the final 45 seconds against the Iowa Hawkeyes to come away with a 32-31 win. Western Michigan also scored a big win this past weekend defeating UConn at home. Combined with Eastern Michigan’s strong showing against the Spartans on Saturday, each of Michigan MAC schools carry momentum heading into conference play.
11. The best college football player in Michigan is Hillsdale College running back Joe Glendening who has scored 6 touchdowns and is just shy of 800 all purpose yards through four games. Glendening, a senior from East Grand Rapids, is a candidate for the Harlon Hill Trophy – the Division II Heisman – broke the Hillsdale career touchdowns record with his 53rd in their 63-14 win over Notre Dame College on Saturday. The victory was also historic as it was the 600th victory in Hillsdale’s 120 years of football. Congratulations to the Chargers.

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