Sunday, Nov. 13, 2016. 1:08 a.m.
Saturday Night Live just ended, and I am beat. It’s been a long afternoon, and night, of college football, and my life in general. My headache is beginning to decay as the night slowly dies down and I begin to gather my thoughts on Michigan’s 14-13 loss at Iowa, a place the Wolverines still haven’t won at since 2005.
But as I lay in bed with all these thoughts swirling around my brain, I can’t seem to put the words together to articulate my true feelings about this loss. So I suppose I will rattle off what I can.
Am I upset? No question. Am I shocked? Not so much. But the real question is, am I encouraged?
The answer: Somewhat.
Michigan isn’t out of the College Football Playoff contention just yet. Remember, Michigan State lost to a 3-6 Nebraska team last season, won out, won the Big 10 Championship game and made the playoff as a four seed. If Michigan wins out, including a huge road win against Ohio State, and wins the Big 10 Championship game, they could be in that same position.
But I’ll also say this; if the offensive play-calling is anything like tonight’s the rest of the year, Michigan can pack its bags for another trip to Florida again for the Citrus Bowl. No College Football Playoff. No Pasadena. No glamorous bowl game fans have been hoping and praying for.
But if Offensive Coordinator Tim Drevno and the boys regroup and realize what they did wrong against Iowa, the Wolverines still have a chance to make some noise.
What went wrong
Michigan didn’t attack Iowa’s weaknesses head on. The offense continuously tried fancy plays that resulted in near interceptions (the flea flicker) or negative yards (every weird looking outside run play). The plays that were working (runs with Chris Evans up the middle) were rarely being used. Evans only ran eight times, but he led Michigan running backs with 52 yards. Ty Isaac had just one rush for seven yards, and that also resulted in a touchdown. Drevno didn’t attack the Hawkeyes’ weaknesses and was left paying the price for it.
Michigan will return home next weekend to play the Indiana Hoosiers, a team that narrowly lost to No. 10 Penn State this weekend, who UM beat handily at home earlier this year.
So what does UM have to do to regroup, like I mentioned previously?
Forget about Iowa. It sounds easier to do than it actually is, but just forget it. And do it quickly. It was a tough, physical game, and it was mentally exhausting as well, but move on. There’s nothing left you can do about the outcome of the game. It’s time to prepare for Indiana.
Secondly, watch this video. They play it at every Michigan home game for a reason. It’s what Wolverine football is all about, and what it will ALWAYS be about.
Thirdly, just remember you have the best academics, stadium and fans on the planet. Nothing beats Michigan football at The Big House on a chilly fall afternoon. Nothing beats Ann Arbor’s great scenery any time of year. And nothing beats 110,000+ rooting on the Maize and Blue all in one place.
I was raised on Michigan football, and I’m sure a decent chunk of the men on this team were as well. If I’m Peppers, Jake Butt, Jourdan Lewis, etc. right now, I’m just reminding myself how thankful I am to be a Michigan Wolverine. The opportunity to suit up in that jersey and play for the greatest public university in the country doesn’t come around all that often. Keep your heads held high and keep looking up. There’s no where but up.
It’s now 1:41 a.m. and I am starting to feel better about the loss. It still sucks, sure, but the season ain’t over yet. There is still plenty of ball to be played. Plenty of memories to be made. Plenty of history to be written.
But at the end of the day — night for me — there’s only thing left to say.
Go Blue. Forever.