Michigan Football: A Look at the Huskies — 9/18/2013


Michigan Football: A Look at the Huskies — 9/18/2013

Well she is ugly, but she is mine, pretty much sums up the play of the Wolverines against Akron.  So a Sunday practice later, and a pretty self-loathing team after an abysmal performance
like that of kangaroo boxing hopefully will have Michigan ready for its first away game at UCONN.  Paul Pasqualoni the Huskies coach seems to believe Michigan will not be caught sleeping again, let’s hope he is right.  I fear to say Connecticut is not a good team for speaking up the devil of week three.  But simply looking at the record of the 0-2 Huskies, they dropped their first game to Towson (Div I FCS) by a score of 33 to 18, and then lost to returning Coach Randy Edsall and his Terps 32-21, and in the later game they UConn offense gave up six sacks (They gave up 5 to Towson), so hopefully our defense will find its footing in this game.  In their first two matches Connecticut has a combined 115 yards rushing, 555 yards passing, four touchdowns, and five giveaways (3 picks, 1 fumble, and a safety) on offense and statistically is becoming a more pass than rush team.  On defense they have allowed 425 yards rushing (allowing 4.6 per carry), and 469 yards passing (allowing 9.8 per receiving attempt, 16.8 per actual reception), and 8 TDs, while registering 3 take-aways (2 picks, and 1 fumble).  Now for a deeper look at UConn.

Coach Paul Pasqualoni has vast NFL experience, and as a college head coach his record is 151–92–1, at UConn 10–16 (38.4%).

Season Overview                   2012                                        2013 (2 Games)

Record (AAC)                             5-7                                          0-2
Rushing Offense                        112 – GM AVG 87.92              122 – GM AVG 59.00
Passing Offense                         65 – GM AVG 230.42              37 – GM AVG 277.50
Total Offense                              110 – GM AVG 318.33           103 – GM AVG 336.50
Scoring Offense                         118 – GM AVG 17.75              101 – GM AVG 19.50
Rushing Defense                        7 – GM AVG 97.92                 104 – GM AVG 215.00
Pass Efficiency Defense             35 – GM AVG 120.23              94 – GM AVG 145.36
Total Defense                              9 – GM AVG 309.92               101 – GM AVG 449.50
Scoring Defense                         19 – GM AVG 19.83                95 – GM AVG 32.50
Net Punting                                 83 – AVG 35.74                      89 – AVG 34.60
Punt Returns                              17 – AVG 12.45                      T-118 – AVG 1.00
Kickoff Returns                           94 – AVG 19.57                      87 – AVG 19.73
Turnover Margin                         110 – -1.17                             T-64 – 0.00
Pass Defense                             36 – GM AVG 212.00              72 – GM AVG 234.50
Passing Efficiency                       98 – GM AVG 115.49             74 – GM AVG 129.08
Sacks                                          18 – GM AVG 2.75                 122 – GM AVG 0.00
Tackles For Loss                        15 – GM AVG 7.33                 T-113 – GM AVG 3.00
Sacks Allowed                            100 – GM AVG 2.75                T-121 – GM AVG 5.50

Injury Report

The starting RT Kevin Friend, strong-side linebacker Graham Stewart, and primary WR Shakim Phillips (leads the team in receptions) are all officially questionable for game.  Though Phillips says he expects to play after a hammy pull last week.  For the Wolverines of course Ryan, and Drake Harris remain out.  Lewan was seen in a “fashionable” walking boot but will be back for the game, and more good news is that A.J. Williams and Courtney Avery will also be available for the game against UConn. Strobel’s status is still unknown, but sounds like Cam Gordon may be back also.

On Offense

Expect a multiple scheme offense with some inkling of pro-style, some spread zone read, and even some wildcat, and will use many different personnel groupings.  The offensive line is experienced, though their production and protection thus far has been shaky at best a situation that will be even worse with Friend out.  The team also returns QB Chandler Whitmer who has taken every snap thus far this year is knotted up with TDs and picks (both at 3), and is completing 60.8% of his passes, which is good because he is -21.5 yards rushing the ball and did not grade-out well versus the Terps.  As shown in the injury section their primary offensive weapon is WR Shakim Phillips who is averaging 127.5 yards a game, 17 yards per catch, and all three of UConn’s receiving TDs (He is also the primary Kick-off return man).  If he is down for the game expect Geremy Davis who averages 15.4 (ypc) and 77 yards a game to become the primary target.  Running back Lyle McCombs has 36 rushes for 135 yards (3.6 ypc) for one touchdown, and is averaging 64.5 yards per game which is anemic compared to his almost 200 yard two TD start last year in which he almost made the 1,000 yard mark though he averaged a rushing TD every other game.

Offensive Two Deep – 8 Returning Starters

LT 72 Jimmy Bennett (RSr., 6-9, 309) – 3 Star
LT 78 Dalton Gifford (RSo., 6-5, 296) – 2 Star

LG 69 Steve Greene (RJr., 6-5, 308) – 3 Star
LG 60 Tyler Samra (So., 6-2, 299) – 2 Star

C 73 Alex Mateas (RJr., 6-4, 315) – NR (Penn State Transfer)
C 50 Tyler Bullock (RSr., 6-4, 316) – 2 Star

RG 65 Gus Cruz (RJr., 6-4, 309) – 2 Star
RG 79 Kyle Shafenacker (Fr., 6-3, 290) – 3 Star

RT 77 Kevin Friend (RSr., 6-6, 317) – 2 Star
RT 75 Xavier Hemingway (RSo., 6-5, 272) – 3 Star

TE 49 Sean McQuillan (RSo., 6-4, 237) – 3 Star
TE 96 Spencer Parker (RSr., 6-4, 228) – NR

WR 85 Geremy Davis (RJr., 6-3, 215) – 2 Star
WR 4 Deshon Foxx (Jr., 5-10, 172) – 3 Star

FB 36 Matt Walsh (Fr., 6-0, 227) – 3 Star
FB 34 Jazzmar Clax (RFr., 5-11, 239) – 3 Star

QB 10 Chandler Whitmer (RJr., 6-1, 193) – 4 Star (Illini Transfer via JUCO Route)
QB 12 Casey Cochran (RFr., 6-1, 226) – 3 Star

TB: 43 Lyle McCombs (RJr., 5-8, 175) – 2 Star
TB 44 Max DeLorenzo (RSo., 6-0, 207) – 2 Star

WR: 8 Shakim Phillips (RJr., 6-2, 209) – 3 Star (BC Transfer)
WR 9 Kamal Abrams (Jr., 5-11, 186) – 3 Star

On Defense
Connecticut favors man coverage and uses a 4-3 defensive scheme, but will often stack eight players in the box.  They also seem to switch to a lot of 3-4 fronts on running plays keeping in the same players but moving their gap alignment and assignment.  The Husky defense  was stout against the run last year coming an at 7th versus the run, and 9th in total defense. However, their starting corps took a large hit to graduation, and the NFL.  That said, they still have some excellent players across the defensive groups, and some big fellas on the defensive line.  Their anchor in the defense is LB All-American Yawin Smallwood who led the team in 2012 with 120 tackles (59 solo), 15 TFL, 2 forced fumbles, and 4 sacks.  This year appears to be more of the same as he has 30 tackles in two games (9 solo).  On the interior the team relies upon the massive 323 pound, 6’5″ DT/NT Shamar Stephen to
collapse the pocket, and block running lanes, and he has 17 games as a starter and plays like a veteran.  The corners tend to get caught looking in the backfield this year, but are not afraid to play press and man coverage.  The redshirt freshman Obi Melifonwu plays smart football and will sneak into the box when the Huskies load up to stop the run and has been pretty successful when playing the run this year  having been in on 15 tackles (7 solo), 1.5 TFLs, and recording one of the Huskies two picks.

Defensive Two Deep – 5 Returning Starters

DE 91 Jesse Joseph (RSr., 6-3, 262) – 2 Star
DE 56 Angelo Pruitt (RJr., 6-3 297) – 2 Star

DT 90 Julian Campenni (RSo., 6-0, 298) – 2 Star
DT 92 Mikal Myers (RFr., 6-0, 295) – 3 Star

DT 59 Shamar Stephen (RJr., 6-5, 317) – 2 Star
DT 97 B.J. McBryde (RJR., 6-5, 318) – 2 Star

DE 51 Tim Willman (RSr., 6-4, 267) – 3 Star
DE 47 Reuben Frank (RJr, 6-3, 246) – 2 Star

LB 2 Graham Stewart (RSo., 6-2, 236) – 4 Star (Gator Transfer)
LB 32 Jefferson Ashiru (RSo., 6-2, 233) – 3 Star

LB 52 Ryan Donohue (RSr., 6-0, 238) – 2 Star
LB 41 Brandon Steg (RJr., 6-2, 228) – 3 Star

LB 33 Yawin Smallwood (RJr., 6-4, 236) – 2 Star
LB 46 Marquise Vann (RSo, 6-0, 232) – 3 Star

CB 16 Byron Jones (RJr., 6-1, 191) – 2 Star
CB 3 David Stevenson (RSo., 5-9, 170) – 2 Star

S 20 Obi Melifonwu (RFr., 6-4, 208) – 3 Star
S 19 Ellis Marder (RFr., 6-1, 195) – 2 Star

S 15 Ty-Meer Brown (RJr., 6-0, 201) – 2 Star
S 23 Wilbert Lee (RSo., 6-1, 207) – 3 Star

CB 29 Taylor Mack (Sr., 5-9, 175) – 2 Star
CB 6 Jhavon Williams (RFr., 5-11, 191) – 2 Star

The History – This will be the second meeting between the schools, and Michigan won the first contest in Ann Arbor in 2010 by a score of 30-10.

The Rundown

Less Devin continuing to channel the Denard turn-over ghost, or another miserable performance because of the lack of holding a two-a-day on Sunday instead of one practice; this game should be an excellent chance to right the ship.  The offensive line at UConn is a mess right now, and hopefully the D-line and Mattison take advantage of that.  In conjunction with defensive trench play hopefully our secondary and backer corps plays the pass much better this week, as it is UConn’s bread-and-butter right now.  The offense had they played UConn last year would have faced a stiff battle, but with the Huskies losing two starters at almost every positional group across their defense, the offense should have a successful day both running and passing the ball against a relatively inexperienced Husky defensive team.

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Written by GBMWolverine Staff — SkwdCop

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