Michigan Football: Coach’s Corner — Northwestern at Michigan — Keys to Win
1. Michigan has to stop The run (IMO) Venric Mark is a very under rated running back. He already has over 1000 yards rushing. Kain Colter is also very dangerous with his legs. If they combine for over 150 yards rushing this game just became harder to win. If Michigan can hold them to under 100 yards combined, I like our chances.
2. Eliminate, or at limit negative plays. Northwestern plays a very aggressive defense, they already have almost 50 negative plays and another 19 sacks. If Michigan is consistently second and third and long, game again becomes more interesting.
3. Win the special teams games. Northwestern head coach Pat Fitzgerald is also the special teams coach and he is outstanding. They have a very good field goal kicker and dangerous punt returners. Michigan cannot have a “Sparty” repeat!
4. Michigan has to keep the Northwestern offense between the hashes, maintain again. Especially when Kain Colter is the quarterback. Northwestern offense is much easier to stop when they are kept between the hashes.
5. No turnovers on offense. Seems fairly basic, except Northwestern plays an aggressive defense and have caused 24 fumbles and recovered 12. Michigan has to take care of the football, make Northwestern drive the field!
Couple of match ups to watch.
When Michigan has the ball:
1. Michigan offensive tackles vs. Tyler Scott – This kid is one of the stronger players in the league and has great get off. Type of guy that Lewan has struggled with in past. If Michigan can neutralize him that will be a huge plus.2. Michigan interior vs. Brian Arnfelt – This 300 lb, super-strong defensive tackle that has given Michigan fits last couple of years. If Michigan can limit his penetration and not let tie up multiple blockers we can get to those pesky Northwestern linebackers. They are super aggressive!
When Northwestern has the ball:
1. Michigan linebackers vs. Mark Veneic – He runs the zone very well. Michigan backside linebackers have to maintain proper backside leverage and not let him find the cutback lanes. Northwestern offense makes a living off of teams being over aggressive. Re-watch the Nebraska game!
2. Michigan defensive ends have to stay home and not chase the running backs. Kain Colter is very good at read option and holds the ball to the last second. Keep his rushing in check and big part of Northwestern offense disappears.
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Written by GBMWolverine Staff — CoachBT
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