Michigan Football: Michigan at Penn State — Staff Predictions
Here is our take for the game today. What is your predictions … agree or disagree with us? Come to the message board and make your prediction.
This is certainly a tougher game to predict and will be a tougher game compared to Minnesota. Penn State and Michigan may both want to run the ball early, and Penn State may have better success. Michigan may just have to go to the air to move the ball consistently. The weather should be nice and the score should not be a defensive struggle. Turnovers could keep the score down. As Devin goes so do the Wolverines, so we will see. It would help to get good offensive line play and hard running at the running back position. Happy Valley is probably a 7-point advantage for the home team, versus the standard 3 or 4. Both teams have weaknesses that can be exploited. The offense with the best game plan may just win this game.
I am really thinking Penn State- but I am not going to pull the trigger.
Penn State 24
How much trust will the Michigan coaches have in Devin Gardner? What Devin will we see? What Michigan team will we see? Will the offensive scheme against Minnesota work against Penn State at home? Can our defense stop their tight end? These are the questions I have about this game.
We all know or should know the Penn State that couldn’t do one thing right in the second half especially in the 4th quarter at Indiana won’t be the same team that takes on Michigan today especially playing at home, homecoming, and their “white out” for tonight’s game which usually means it is their biggest game of the year at home. Also factor in a later start time where the fans can get a little more tailgating in always seems to help a home team and gets the place ready to play.
As Doc mentioned in his prediction, Devin Gardner is the key to the success of the Michigan team. Being one of the best players on the team especially at the quarterback position you need your best players to play their best when needed.
I believe the coaches will open it up a little bit more especially early on, but will still try and be a run orientated team — not like the Minnesota game, but trying to establish a running game, long drives to eat up time along with taking the crowd out of the game and establish a toughness/physical/emotional of we are going to run the ball at you — now stop us type of attitude.
If Michigan can be successful doing that it will open up the passing game and when you back the linebackers, and defensive backs off the line of scrimmage that will also open up the running game as well and when you can be more diverse and balance you are more likely to be successful and do what you want.
Think Michigan will win this game, but be a tight game. This could be the type of game that Michigan needs on the road to show not only themselves, but the fans as well that this team is ready for the challenges ahead with a tougher schedule coming and this is the first step in that direction.
Penn State 24
This one scares me. No, that’s not true. They’ve all scared me so far this year. Team 134 is a work in progress, more than some fans were realistically prepared for. Coach Hoke and his staff are doing a good job of bringing the team along.
Offense: I liked the game plan last week, and think we’ll see pretty much the same thing this week. We must continue to work the power running game. That in turn will setup the play action pass. Devin will probably have to take a few more chances this week, but if he plays under control, secures the ball, and his mechanics in the pocket are as good as last week, the offense will be good enough. We have to be better than last week, and I think we will be.
Defense: The D-line was disappointing last week, especially early. They have to step up and stay in their lanes this week. Zwinak is a good back, but this is a straight ahead power run game. Christian Hackenberg is as good as it gets for a Freshmen QB. We cannot…cannot, let him setup and survey the field. He will tear us apart. There has to be enough pressure, and enough hits to keep him uncomfortable.
I see this as another nail biter, and another good learning experience for this young team. A solid opponent, on the road, as hostile an environment as there is anywhere, and it’s an early evening game. I hope for improvement, but all I really want is to come out of Happy Valley with a win…anyway we can scratch one out. I think we’re in for another afternoon/evening of pacing the floor until the last tick of the clock. When the chimes ring 8pm….I think we’ll hear them playing Hail To The Victors.
Penn State 27
Michigan needs to show a balance on offense along with a toughness on the road of beating teams at their own place.
Time for this team to step their game up and get ready for the challenges that lie ahead for them.
Haven’t played Penn State for a few years now and it is time to show them the old Michigan teams they are use to be playing and not the “RR era”. At one time Michigan dominated this series by winning 7 games in a row. Think it is time to get back on track.
Penn State 32
Ahh yes, the first true road test of the season in the house that Joe built.
A couple things stand out:
1. Michigan isn’t going to be able to run the ball as frequently as they did against Minnesota. The Lions front seven is formidable and will be stacked to stop the run and the delay QB draw.
2. Gardner would be best suited to either roll the pocket or use his TE ‘s. The middle of the field may be open.
3. The silent count will be put to test. Hopefully this will serve us well, especially with road games at Iowa and MSU coming up.
4. The defensive front will have to apply controlled pressure to rush the QB. he has already thrown a bunch of picks this season when pressured. They have a decent TE and a potential All-American WR, so they will use the air frequently and compliment it with play action runs. If this kid gets time, he’ll pick our secondary apart.
This said, Michigan still has more depth than Penn State. It is not a guarantee of anything, but it should bode well in a close game.
Gibbons comes through in the clutch, late.
Penn State 30
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Written by GBMWolverine Staff
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