Apr 5, 2014; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Michigan Wolverines offensive linesman Kyle Kalis (67) walks on the filed during the Spring Game at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan Football: Wolverine Offensive Line -- Part I


Posted at 7:45am — 4/17/2014

Michigan Football: Wolverine Offensive Line — Part I

Well, Here Is Another Fine Mess?

But of course the final words to that famous stanza of Oliver Norvell Hardy’s was “you’ve gotten me into.” To some discredit, Michigan football observers seem to be saying the same about the line offensive line situation at Michigan. Does the hypothesis that the line is a fine mess deserve discussion? Perhaps so, but mere discussion does not block defenders successfully, players and a successful scheme and regimen accomplishes that sought after goal. The true discussion and the process to evolve improvement belongs to the coaches and players.

Oct 12, 2013; University Park, PA, USA; Michigan Wolverines offensive linesmen Taylor Lewan (77) walks off the field during the fourth quarter against the Penn State Nittany Lions at Beaver Stadium. Penn State defeated Michigan 43-40 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Matthew O

First off, last year’s line play was a mess, beating a horse, beating a drum, beating up players, and beating up coaches has no true impact. It is done and no one wants a repeat performance. The thesis has been established, the line was a mess, accepted this thesis is, not debated; move on, the present will yield a reflection of the past, or a vision of the future. It will be up to the players and staff to see which of the two scenarios comes to pass.

The mess needs to be contained and corrected. But reality better sink in: this is a difficult, necessary, but doable task. Sooner or later there will be another great Michigan line. And sooner or later there will be a team that can better dominate the trench. The irritating variable to some is the timeline, that is, when will this happen? The smart answer is who knows? This is so. What is also so, is that everyone in the program realizes the problem and is attempting to do something positive and rational to improve the situation. But here is no quick elixir and debating the past is using up oxygen. It was, and now what is counts.

One should think of the mess as a sliding scale: from a quantifiable scale of 1-10 or from a qualitative scale of atrocious to superior. Take your pick, but remember, whichever scale to be used, the results will slide up and down, back and forth, over days and over years. That is the nature of athletics, and this is especially the nature of improving line play, where ugly outpaces beautiful.

So now the discussion is directed to a formula that can be considered simplified but usually effective in waste and clean up management for athletic messes.

Part II coming at noon today.

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Written by GBMWolverine Staff — Doc4Blu

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