What I learned from Notre Dame

Posted on Posted in Michigan Football

With Saturday in the rear-view and the focus shifting to Akron, I had some time to digest what I saw from the Michigan team during their 41-30 win over Notre Dame. Not only was Saturday night a time to honor one of the best players to ever wear the winged helmet in Tom Harmon, Ann Arbor said goodbye to Notre Dame. This was a huge, huge win for the Wolverines as they were going to be tested by the Fighting Irish. But, they prevailed under the lights and it was glorious.

Let’s take a look back and see what I learned from watching this team Saturday night:

1.) Devin Gardner put the conference on watch.

Save for one silly mistake in his own endzone, Gardner was flawless. He was 21-33 for 294 yards and four touchdowns through the air. He also contributed 82 yards and another touchdown on the ground. His feet were instrumental in this victory and he definitely made “Old 98” proud. The conference doesn’t surround Martinez or Miller anymore, Gardner forced his way into the limelight. But, if you followed this team closely, you knew it was going to happen.

He carved up the Irish defense through the air and on the ground. If Devin Gardner wasn’t a household name going into Saturday night, he is now. 

2.) Jeremy Gallon WILL eclipse 1,000 receiving yards this season.

There is no doubt in my mind that Jeremy Gallon will hit the 1,000 yard mark. Finishing with 184 yards and three touchdowns Saturday, a performance like that from a wide receiver hasn’t been seen since the days of Mario Manningham. For his efforts, Gallon also received Big Ten POW honors. As of right now, Gallon has 231 receiving yards. With a very favorable schedule coming up, he could see that number soar heading into the difficult portion of the schedule. With the way Gardner and Gallon have been connecting, both of them should have incredible seasons.

3.) A healthy Blake Countess makes all the difference.

When Blake Countess went down with an ACL last season, he took a big chunk of talent out of the defensive back group with him. Now that he is at full strength, he is making his presence felt on the field. With two interceptions against the Irish, albeit one was a perfectly timed tipped ball that sealed the victory, he is the missing piece the defensive backs are looking for. If the safeties can figure out their issues, the defense is fine-tuned machine.

People have said that Countess could be the shutdown corner Michigan has been missing for quite some time his freshman year. Though the sentiments might be a touch premature, he has shown that he has the abilities to adopt a “no fly zone” on his side of the field.

4.) The running game still isn’t there yet.

The lack of production from Fitzgerald Toussaint could stem from many factors. An offensive line that is still learning combined with a terrific defensive line of the Irish could’ve made a difference in shutting down Fitz. The running game was aided by having Gardner make the necessary plays with his feet and arm in which took the pressure off the running game. Though if Michigan wants to be successful in the conference, the running game needs to get it together quickly. Devin Gardner can’t be relied on to do everything.

5.) Brady Hoke enshrined himself into the gif hall of fame.

Derek Devine
Institutional voice of Alma College during the day, Michigan fanatic at night. Taking TBHR to the next level one post at a time.