This week we’re excited to be bringing you a Q&A from Greg Garno, Co-Managing Sports Editor of The Michigan Daily. Greg was kind enough to answer questions about the disastrous quarterback situation, Michigan‘s key to success on defense, Brady Hoke’s goals and more. You can read all of Greg’s work for The Michigan Daily here, and follow him on Twitter here.
TBHR: Is it Devin Gardner or Shane Morris who gives Michigan the best shot at winning?
Greg Darno: I’m not sure I know enough about Morris to say which one will be better, but I think that down the road, Morris will be the best option. Morris still has work to do, and I don’t know that he’s got all the pieces in place yet, but he still has that potential. Give him time to progress, to mature against teams like Minnesota and Rutgers, and he could make a difference.
TBHR: Brady Hoke continues to talk about how the goal of a Big Ten title is still on the table, and even some players are reiterating that. Is that even a somewhat reasonable expectation for this season?
GD: If they play the way they have thus far, it’s not. They won’t win against Michigan State, Ohio State or Penn State with similar performances. I’m not sure every game will be like that from here on out, but it’s not looking terribly optimistic. Even if they were 3-1 or undefeated, I’d still say no because I believe OSU and MSU are far superior teams.
TBHR: Michigan’s effort on defense has been phenomenal through the first four games. What’s the real key to the success on that side of the ball?
GD: I think the front seven is a big part of it all. They have managed to disrupt the backfield and they’re able to keep offenses from big plays (Utah being a bit of an anomaly). They’re also making important stops on third down and getting off the field. But they still need to force turnovers. The two interceptions aren’t enough to make a big enough difference right now.
TBHR: There was a good amount of talk this offseason about the impact Jabrill Peppers could have on offense, but we haven’t seen that yet. Do you think Doug Nussmeier can make a spot for Peppers? And if so, how would he be used?
GD: I don’t think we’ll see him quite yet until Raymon Taylor returns to the starting cornerback position. Michigan still needs him on defense to put its best secondary out, so he’s not worth injuring on offense. Perhaps later in the season, when they need a spark, he’ll be put in.
TBHR: Is there a certain mark Michigan needs to reach this season in order for Brady Hoke to save his job?
GD: If Brady Hoke can beat Ohio State or Michigan State, and win at least six games, he could very well be back. But if he loses both of the big ones, I don’t see him returning. If it’s much of the same, then he’ll be out.
TBHR: Michigan fans can clearly be heard booing this team at The Big House. What’s your stance on booing from the crown during a game?
GD: Fans are invested in a team, they pay hundreds, sometimes thousands of dollars. If they are upset with the way their team is playing, they can express that. I do believe it’s important to remember who those boos are being directed at. Not all these guys need to be harassed for one mistake.