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October 06, 2003 - Image 13

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2003-10-06

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The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - October 6, 2003 - 5B

X's AND (kv(e) 0'S
Michigan Daily Sports Editor Kyle O'Neill is not a collegiate athlete, nor is
he a collegiate coach. But he was a starting wide receiver for his winless
team at Garber High School, was third in Bay County in receptions his sen-
ior year and claims to know something about the game of football. So each
game, we'll let him and his 5-foot-10, 158-pound frame break down why
Michigan either succeeded or failed.
3 Observations Key play: 4:08 left in the third quarter; 4th-and-3

1. I know many are wonder-
ing why Michigan just does-
n't go into a shotgun
offense more often. Well,
here's why Michigan can't:
Man-to-man defense. The
Wolverines can pick apart a
zone defense with the best
of them. Those who saw
Jason Avant get so many
third-down catches in the
first half saw Michigan find
holes in Iowa's defense. The
same can be said for Michi-
gan's final drive. But when
Michigan went to the air
against Iowa's man
defense, many passes were
broken up as it was tough
for Navarre to properly lead
or hit his receivers in stride.
2. Well, you wanted more
from Steve Breaston, and
you got it. Kick returner,
punt returner, wide receiver
and rusher on an end-around.
All it proved was that the
phenom is human. He
pressed a few punt returns
that he should have fair
caught and his second end-
around was something that
Iowa was more than expect-
ing. Fans need to realize that
what makes someone like
Breaston special is that the
less he touches the ball, the
less a defense will be expect-
ing him. The hype around him
is deserved, but defenses
are going to be focusing on
him a lot - something not
easily handled by any red-
shirt freshman.
3. Sorry, long drive back
from Iowa. I was a fan of
the Iowa-80 truck stop -
the largest in the world.
But the defense played
solid throughout and
deserved better.

: : : . : ,: :.: :, : : :.: : : : :. : : : ; : :.: : : : : : : : :. -7 .: . : ; : - .: : :;:. .: : 7: :.: : X : : X - : : ; : : : : : : - I - : """ '., , .. . . . .% .1 % .- .'. . . " . ' . ". ... '- . ' ' , '- , . ; ; . ; " , . x . " - ".' '. . -,., .

X

MICHIGAN

ilbe £tcrilRt aud
Hype-meter
Ohio State fans
Penn State
game last year
"Tremendous"
- Lloyd's proud
You'll be a fine
Michigan alum
Shaking keys
on 3rd down
Sorority girls
on cell phones
It was a unique trip for two
of the Michigan Daily's foot-
ball writers. due to limited
space in Kinnick Stadium's
press box, we got an oppor-
tunity to sit in the stands
for the game and really get
a feel for the Iowa crowd.
We weren't very impressed.
The Wolverines easily
sucked the life out of the
timid Hawkeyes fans when
they went up by two touch-
downs early.
Even the Iowa student sec-
tion was demoralized after
its team's poor start. But of
course, the Wolverines
began to implode, and
the Iowa crowd fed off
these mistakes.
As Iowa slowly began to
climb back into the con-
test, the crowd began to
take interest once again,
and the noise level did go
up. But it still did not come
anywhere near the Oregon
crowd, or the noise level
when Notre Dame came to
the Big House earlier this
year.
The noise level reached its
peak after Iowa's touch-
down in the fourth, but
even that was far from what
it could be.

Q
A

Ask the
Football Writers
EDITOR'S NOTE: On page
5B of SportsMonday, the foot-
ball writers will answer your
questions about anything, and
we mean anything. E-mail us
with questions or just to vent at:
askthefootbadwriters@umich.edu

gi..

LnO

EJ'-O
THIN W-
THICK UNk

In 2002 Michigan recruit-
ed an offensive guard
from New Jersey named
Jeff Zuttah. He accepted
the scholarship offer, but
he doesn't appear on the
roster this year. He was
rated the No. 5 offensive
guard in the country by
Rivals.com. What hap-
pened?
- James Beckett
James,
Here's Lloyd Carr's take
on the Zuttah situation
as of late June:
"I'm not sure on Jeff Zut-
tah," Carr said. "He took
some recruiting trips this
summer. He's free to
leave. He would be
immediately eligible, and
I think there is a chance
that he will leave and
play somewhere else.
But I don't have anything
definitive at this time."
Essentially, it just came
down to Zuttah wanting
to play elsewhere, and
Carr, or any coach, is not
going to waste their time
on someone that doesn't
want to wear their
school colors.
Because of the loss, we
were not able to find
out the majority of your
questions, but we will
as we want to keep our
promise to you, the
inquisitive reader. We
encourage more of you
to send in questions.

P WAS
LS MANN
TARE PROTECTORS
RIGIIT BRS
CENTER liENIE
LEFT .Bnm

RYE' M
RT B
RG T

EPRE-SNAP
W AFRrkSINAP'

Explanation: Well, it's safe to say no one thought they'd ever see this formation used. And it's
safe to say that before the game, Michigan coach Lloyd Carr wasn't planning on using a punt
with two-yard splits on the line. But, it happened, and, in theory, it was a good idea. Iowa's
Ramon Ochoa was fresh off a 43-yard punt return and Michigan's punt team was without
injured Larry Stevens and Jeremy Van Alstyne, so Michigan went into a formation that empha-
sized the coverage and allowed Garrett Rivas - who was a better choice than Adam Finley in
this situation - to roll out right and direct the punt away from Ochoa. And despite its crazy
appearance, it did work, as Ochoa was taken out of the play and Iowa was given bad field pos-
session inside its own 30 twice. The third time, however, Iowa's Chris Smith got through the
three protectors of Rivas nearly untouched and stuffed Rivas' kick. Smith got hit by Michigan
wide receiver Tyrece Butler - playing right tackle - at the line and shook off his shoulder
shrug. Butler and the rest of the line went right downfield for the coverage on Ochoa. Smith
and the other defenders on his side of the line began to rush. Right protector David Baas took
Iowa's defensive end out of the play leaving Smith and three other defenders wide open to rush
on Michigan's middle and left protectors: Leo Henige and Mark Bihl, respectively. Henige was
barely able to get a hand on the rushing Smith, who had a wide-open block on Rivas.

SIKORA
Continued from Page 1B
Navarre - if it truly believes
Navarre gives Michigan its best
chance to win - then at least give
him a chance to win the game.
There is no point in playing
Navarre if your goal is to rush the
ball or run screen passes all the way
down to the endzone.
I don't know about you, but when
Navarre threw that 41-yard bomb to
Edwards in the fourth quarter to
pull Michigan within three, it was
the hardest thing for me to watch.
Navarre can make plays like that
when given the opportunity. He has
proven time and time again that he
can throw the ball down the field
with some consistency. He threw
for 389 total yards! Granted most of
these came when Iowa was in a
zone, but it still proves that Navarre
can throw.
I was pleased to see Michigan
open the game with three- and four-
wideout sets because it put Navarre
in control, and he was playing well.
But as soon as Iowa made an adjust-
ment in the second half, the coach-
ing staff shied away from the
middle of the field.
They limited Navarre to handing
it off or throwing shorter out-
routes, which eliminated his biggest

strength. In the second half, up until
the Wolverines' second-to-last drive
of the game, Navarre had thrown
just two balls to the middle of the
field. Not exactly playing to your
strengths.
"They game planned what we ran
in the first half, and they're going
to adjust to that," said Navarre of
Iowa's coaching staff. "And we have
to be able to adjust to that, too. It's
just a coaching battle back and
forth, and we have to be able to do
the job there."
But instead of adjusting, the
plays Michigan ran in the third
quarter made it look like it was
retreating.
The Michigan coaching staff has
to give Navarre a chance to use his
experience. Let him make an
adjustment. What good is it to have
a senior quarterback if you don't
have any faith in him?
If he still can't engineer a road
victory, then this might be a hope-
less situation. But until then, the
coaching staff must have the confi-
dence in Navarre to let him play his
game. If it doesn't, it should begin
prepping Gutierrez for the rest of
his Michigan career.
Naweed Sikora can be reached at
nsikora@umich.edu

CURTIS HILLER/Daily
Michigan wide receivers Carl Tabb and Steve Breaston sit on the sideline in disgust
after a failed drive against Iowa.

SETH LOWER/Daily
As Michigan players sulk, Iowa's Calvin Davis celebrate his touchdown with 19
seconds left in the first half.

a I

fts Mdftgan Baig
STAFF PICKS
Predictions AGAINST THE
SPREAD for 10/4/03
No. 9 Michigan (-3) at No. 23 Iowa
Indiana at No. 25 MICHIGAN STATE (-15)
No. 21Minnesota (-10.5) at NORTHWESTERN
Wisconsin at PENN STATE (EVEN)
Illinois at No. 22 PURDUE (-14).
Oregon (-3.5) at UTAH
Western Michigan (-14) at EASTERN MICHIGAN
No. 7 Tennessee at AUBURN (-1)
Mlssissippi at No. 24 FLORIDA (12.5)
Alabama at No.11GEORGIA (-11)
Tro Stateant No.1 NmwAw (-7.5)

courtney
Lewis
Michigan
Michigan State
Minnesota
Wisconsin
Purdue
Oregon
Western Michigan
Tennessee
Mississippi
Georgia
Nebraska

J. Brady
McCollough
Michigan
Michigan State
Minnesota
Wisconsin
Purdue
Utah
Eastern Michigan
Auburn
Florida
Georgia
Trov State

Kyle
O'Neill
Michigan
Indiana
Northwestern
Wisconsin
Purdue
Oregon
Eastern Michigan
Auburn
Florida
Georgia
Troy State

Naweed
Sikora

Michigan
Michigan State
Minnesota
Wisconsin
Purdue
Utah
Eastern Michigan
Tennessee
Mississippi
Alabama
Troy State

Joe Kraim from
Campus Corner
Michigan
Michigan State
Minnesota
Wisconsin
Purdue
Oregon
Western Michigan
Tennessee
Florida
Georgia
Nebraska

Shocking! Celebrity
comes to play
It's been long awaited, and now
it has happened: An Ann Arbor
celebrity put together a more-
than-just-mediocre week. Joe
Kraim of Campus Corner repre-
sented when his Wolverines did
anything but.
Speaking of representing, J. Brady
McCollough overcame a best-bet
debacle of Florida -joining
www.FireRonZook.com's e-mail
list - and jumped into first place
with a 12-6 record, the second-
best one week record this season.
McCollough pulls away from
Naweed Sikora, who returned to
his weekly 9-9 tradition after a
13-5 week.
Moving herself out of the red
was Courtney Lewis with an 11-
7 record - again proving why
she is more knowledgeable
about football than Maryland

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