Mailbag question: Why should I be optimistic?


Posted at 8:00am — 5/4/2010

Mailbag question: Why should I be optimistic?

Based on what I have read from multiple sources, it seems like the defensive backfield needs work, the offensive line couldn’t open holes for the running backs, the running backs were inconsistent, the wide receivers are not dominant, the pass rush was weak and linebacker play is a continued question. Why should I be optimistic for the upcoming season?

Peter F.


Thanks for the question.

Well we hope it is because you love Michigan football and if you cannot be at least a little optimistic after spring practices when can you be?

Realistically, in our opinion, Michigan will be improved and if they can stay healthy it should show it on the field. The base question is of course how much (if any) will the team be improved. And the answer to that question has miles to go before any narrowing of prediction should be made. The answer will be multivariate in nature and will include often spoken (but true) tangibles such as injuries, a little luck, ability to overcome adversity, ability to win the close games, and (likely primarily) continued improvement. Add to this a better job of playing and coaching in the second half of games.

We still are looking at 2011 as a realistic possibility (not certainty) to again compete for Big Ten Championships and beyond.

This year the schedule, in our opinion, favors Michigan quite well. UConn comes to Michigan, they are a good team with many returning players back, but playing at home should help.

UM plays at Notre Dame, where anything can happen, but the Irish are changing over to a spread type offense under Coach Kelly and also will be breaking in a new, but talented, quarterback to go with a new system. This transition may or may not be similar to that of Michigan three years ago when Coach Rod arrived in Ann Arbor.

Thereafter UM plays UMass and Bowling Green at home with a road game at Indiana.

Michigan in the middle of the schedule plays two Big Ten teams at home in a row, Michigan State and Iowa, both should be very good teams, but Michigan should be able to play with just about everybody in the Big Ten this year and playing at home should help.

At Penn State, especially if the game is at night, is always a tough game. Once again PSU will be breaking in a new quarterback, one who will be selected from a good talent bank.

Playing Illinois at home (new Illini quarterback) should be a redemption game. Playing at Purdue should be a game that Michigan needs to make a statement and say enough is enough, turn the corner and win games at this level of the Big Ten.

Playing Wisconsin at home helps, but the Badgers are always a tough, solid team and once again it will come down to the factor of how well Michigan does in stopping the Wisconsin running game. This could end up being a big game down the road.

As always, Michigan finishes the season with Ohio State. Playing at OSU is always tough and this game could be a game that could send OSU to the BCS National Championship Game, or at least to the Rose Bowl and another Big Ten title. OSU is the absolute favorite to win the league again.

Truthfully, Michigan can play with everybody on the schedule this year. This does not mean the Wolverines will beat everyone, but they can play with these teams this year, or should be able too.

Written by GBMW Staff

Go Blue — Wear Maize!