Showing posts from June, 2013

Inside the Playbook - A look into MSU's Cover 4

This time I look at MSU's cover 4. Combined with their front 7 scheme (4-3 Over), it has become one of the better defenses in the nation. We look at it in some depth here: Link In the next couple days, I plan on publishing a Breakdown Sports exclusive (I feel stupid saying that, I apologize) that brings it together a little more and looks at how teams will attempt to attack the defense.

Inside the Playbook - MSU's Defensive Front - 4-3 Over

Over at Maize n Brew  today, my in depth look at some of MSU's 4-3 Over front variations, the reasons for them, and how offenses plan to attack them has been posted. Take a look if you're interested in seeing how moving one foot over in the same gap can turn an offensive strength play to an offensive weakness. A post covering MSU's variation of the cover 4 will be posted soon as well. Link

Inside Michigan's Playbook

I haven't been posting as much as I've wanted to. I've been busy the last couple weeks, and these break downs take quite a bit of time. Here's a link to the collection of all the Inside the Playbook to date. Inside the Playbook Series And here's a link to the newest article. Inside the Playbook - Pass Game Basics - Part II

Inside the Playbook - Pass game basics - Part I

Another in the series of posts over at Maize n Brew for readers to check out. Look at some of the Michigan pass game basics that they will often run to get comfortable before unleashing the big guns.

Inside the Playbook - Roll Outs and Sprint Outs - Part III

The final part of my roll outs and sprint outs chapter is up at Maize n Brew. This time, we look at how Borges and Co. will make you pay for being over-aggressive. You can also check out the other parts while you're there. Part 1 Part 2 Part 3

Recruit Breakdown: Raekwon McMillan

Ceiling: 9                 Ranking: 7.75                  Floor: 3.75 ( Ranking Explanation ) School: Parkway (Bossier City, LA) Size: 6'2" - 235 lbs. Composite: 5 Star, #1 ILB, #14 Overall 247 : 5 Star, 98, #1 ILB, #13 Overall Rivals : 5 Star, 6.1, #1 ILB, #17 Overall Scout : 4 Star, #5 ILB, #41 Overall Favorites: Alabama, Clemson, Ohio St (assumed favorite), USC Other Notable Offers:  Auburn, Florida, FSU, Georgia, Indiana, Miami, Michigan St, Nebraska, ND, Ole Miss, Oregon, South Carolina, Stanford, Tennessee, UCLA, Wisconsin Strengths Size Hits extremely hard Very aggressive down hill player/ Blitz ability Great athlete in pursuit Great instincts at the MIKE position. Reads plays extremely quickly, gets downhill with a lot of speed, and slices through the line well. Hits hard, accelerating through contact and finishing players backwards. Continues to drive feet and legs after contact, ball carriers don't finish falling forwa

Recruit Breakdown: Chris Frey

Ceiling: 8                 Ranking: 6                  Floor: 3.5 ( Ranking Explanation ) School: Parkway (Bossier City, LA) Size: 6'1" - 210 lbs. Composite: 3 Star, #76 OLB 247 : 3 Star, 81, #86 OLB Rivals : 3 Star, 5.6, #37 OLB Scout : 3 Star, #40 OLB Favorites: Michigan State (Commit) Other Notable Offers: Boston College, Kentucky, Syracuse, Purdue Strengths Athletic Fluid hips for a LB prospect Good coverage instincts Has good athleticism for a LB. When sent blitzing, he gets downhill quickly. Does a nice job flowing down the line. Can find his way through the wash. Displays fluid hips for a LB prospect, both on offense and when dropping back in coverage. Looks relatively comfortable in underneath coverage for a high school player, has the hip flexibility to cover at the next level. Has good instincts in the pass game, anticipates routes before they fully develop. Wraps up nicely on contact, can bring the pop when he tackles. H

Inside the Playbook - Roll Outs and Sprint Outs - Part II

For those that liked Part I of the series, part II is now up at Maize n Brew. This time we look at over-aggressive DBs and some of the other combinations to pick up easy yards out of the roll out series. Check it out and leave a comment if you have any questions.

Inside the Playbook - Roll Outs and Sprint Outs - Part 1

I put up a post last night detailing some of the near future plans for the blog. I indicated that I have been working on a series for Maize n Brew  recently called "Inside the Playbook". Well, my first part in the series has just been posted, and you can check it out here .

Blog Preview

Just a heads up about the upcoming days/weeks on the blog. Recently, I've been working on a series of blog posts for Maize n Blue called "Inside the Playbook". It will be looking closely at the Michigan pass game and breakdown concepts, techniques, and theories. It's more of what I want to do with this blog as well, and I'll be sure to link those articles here when they go up. In the upcoming days I will continue to analyze some recruits, including some already committed to schools. I plan on looking at committed prospects: Chris Frey (OLB, MSU), Jabrill Peppers (CB, Michigan), Damon Webb (CB, OSU), Chris Goodwin (WR, PSU), and Justin Jackson (RB, Northwestern) I'll also be scouting: RB Chris James, Athlete JuJu Smith, ILB Raekwon McMillan, WR Artavis Scott, OL Brian Wallace, along with possibly some others. If you're interested in a certain recruit, leave a comment and it's likely I'll get around to them soon.

Recruit Breakdown: Brandon Harris

Ceiling: 9                 Ranking: 7                  Floor: 4.5 ( Ranking Explanation ) School: Parkway (Bossier City, LA) Size: 6'2" - 190 lbs. Composite: 4 Star, #3 Dual, #235 Overall 247 : 4 Star, 94, #1 Dual, #98 Overall Rivals : 4 Star, 5.8, #5 Dual, #186 Overall Scout : 3 Star, #24 Dual Favorites: LSU (Commit) Other Notable Offers:  Alabama, Auburn, LSU, OSU, South Carolina,   Arizona St, Arkansas, Baylor, Indiana, Miss St, Nebraska, North Carolina, Texas A&M Strengths Has very good arm strength. When able to set his feet he gets get zip on the ball, very little hang, gets to the receiver fast. When able to step into clean pocket he can make any throw. Capable of putting touch on the pass, but again, needs to have clean pocket to step into. Can do a good job of keeping proper shoulder angle and ladder growth (this is when you see a QB do quick, choppy steps, essentially pulling themselves forward while maintaining a consistent

Recruit Breakdown: Jamarco Jones

Ceiling: 9                 Ranking: 8.25                  Floor: 5 ( Ranking Explanation ) School: De La Salle Institute (Chicago, ILL) Size: 6'5" - 290 lbs. Composite: 4 Star, #4 OT, #49 Overall 247 : 4 Star, 97, #5 OT, #42 Overall Rivals : 4 Star, 5.9, #13 OT, #97 Overall Scout : 4 Star, #6 OT, #52 Overall Favorites: Ohio State (Commit) Other Notable Offers:  Michigan, Michigan St, Notre Dame,  Arizona St, Arkansas, Cal, Florida, FSU, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Miss St, Nebraska, Northwestern, Oklahoma, Ole Miss, Purdue, Tennessee, UCLA, Vandy, Virginia, Wisconsin Strengths Mammoth body that moves well, especially forward. Can pull around the line as his straight speed is good for his size. Great, great down blocker. Gets under pads of kids that are much smaller than him, get into body, latches on, and drives. Very physical player that lifts defenders off their feet upon his initial pop and eats them (not literall

Recruit Breakdown: Micquell Cotton

Ceiling: 7.5                 Ranking: 4.5                  Floor: 3 ( Ranking Explanation ) School: Thomas Jefferson (Clairton, PA) Size: 5'8" - 175 lbs. Composite: 3 Star, #94 S 247 : UR Rivals : 3 Star, 5.5 Scout : 3 Star, #69 S Favorites: Indiana, Iowa St, Michigan St, Syracuse Strengths Very good athlete, very quick and has good top end speed. Quick first step and lateral movement. Reckless when tackling, not afraid to throw his body around. Good instincts when coming down in run support. Breaks down well when runners try to side-step him. Runs through QB or RB upon contact. Weaknesses Very, very small. Not only short, but does not possess long arms. Tends to leave feet and launch into ball carriers. When he doesn't launch, he tends to bend at the waste and put the crown of his helmet down; when he does this his feet stop and he typically gets run over and takes ball carrier down with him. Plays OLB in high school, will have

Recruit Breakdown: Chase Winovich

Ceiling: 8                 Ranking: 6                  Floor: 4 ( Ranking Explanation ) School: Thomas Jefferson (Clairton, PA) Size: 6'4" - 220 lbs. Composite: 3 Star, #41 OLB 247 : 3 Star, 87, #48 OLB Rivals : 3 Star, 5.7, #29 OLB Scout : 3 Star, #28 OLB Favorites:  Michigan (Commit) Other Notable Offers:  Arkansas, Boston College, Florida St, Illinois, Miami (FL), Michigan St, Northwestern, Ohio St, Oregon, Pitt, Virginia Tech, West Virginia Strengths Wraps up well on contact. Good fundamentals when tackling, wraps up and keeps feet driving. Long arms and good wrap make him very good at tackling from the side. Good athlete and good speed for his size and position. Ideal height for SAM. Very explosive north/south, more of a downhill player than sideline-to-sideline. Aggressive to the ball, never gives up on a play. Weaknesses Often stands up to high after the snap of the ball when off the LOS. Will need to learn to use his hands when b

Recruit Breakdown: Madre London

Ceiling: 8                Ranking: 5.5                 Floor: 4 ( Ranking Explanation ) School: St. Thomas Aquinas (Ft. Lauderdale, FL) Size: 6'1" - 200 lbs. Composite: 3 Star, #103 RB 247 : 3 Star, 81, #92 RB Rivals : 3 Star, 5.5 Scout : 3 Star, #77 RB Favorites: Boston College, Florida State, Michigan State, Nebraska, Wisconsin Other Notable Offers: Cincinnati, Illinois, Kansas, Purdue, Rutgers, South Carolina  Strengths Good initial burst, quick to get up to full speed. Good stop/start quickness, pushes defenders past him and gets back up to speed with good burst. Plants foot solidly in ground and gets running north/south with strength behind his shoulders. Has a good shoulder lean upon contact. Keeps feet churning when still square to LOS. Falls forward when going down. Uses his left hand well to stiff arm defenders and scrape away tacklers hands. Big body that can add weight. Willing blocker. Great feel for running routes

Recruiting System

Below is my list for how I anticipate my own personal ranking of a recruit. The list goes from 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest. The basic approximation for recruits should look somewhat like a bell curve. So please, don't get frustrated when I say a kid is a 5, that doesn't mean he's failing, he isn't getting a 50%, he's just an average recruit. This ranking is based on how a recruit will play out their eligibility at a BCS-level school. Ranking Definition 10 Best in class/best at his position in ~4 years 9 First Team All-American 8 First Team All-Conference in Media and Coaches (Second or HM AA) 7 Second Team All-Conference Media Or Coaches 6 Honorable Mention All-Conference/Above Average Conference Starter 5 Average Conference Starter 4 Below Average Conference Starter/ Early of Bench 3 Depth Player 2 Non-BCS Depth Player 1 Walk On If you're looking

A New Way of Looking at Recruiting

The Current System's Problem Way back when, Rivals developed a method of ranking recruits. They used between 1 and 5 stars - or more realistically, 2 through 5 stars - and that was ok. Then other recruiting services came along and used the same model. And now it's just the expected model. But that doesn't mean it's the right system. Many fan bases look at recruiting rankings, and if they are high in them they trust the source; if they are low: not so much. In my mind, this is an inherent problem from the recruiting ranking system. Players cannot so simply be placed in an area between two and five stars. The sites often fail at displaying why a recruit is say a low 4-star rather than a high 3-star. In my mind, they don't effectively breakdown and explain: what's a recruits ceiling; what's a recruits floor; what is the recruit really good at; what does the recruit need to work on, and what type of system the recruit fits best in. What I Want to