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September 12, 2005 - Image 15

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2005-09-12

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The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - September 12, 2005 - 5B

Afte1r evcy game f the
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Defensive Intensity

Carr-o-meter

Hypemeter

Rush Yards

Sure the game was a loss, but the defense
showed a marked improvement from last
week's effort against Northern Illinois. This
rating would have been even higher, but Notre
Dame's first drive exposed some of the weak-
nesses in the Wolverines' unit, including a lack
of pressure on the quarterback and an inability
to shed blockers. Still, the intensity and effort
were there, and if the defense can play like this
every week the team should be in much better
shape. There's still work to be done, but things
are moving in the right direction.

Lloyd Carr's initial reaction to this loss was
slightly more positive than most observers
anticipated. Even though he was clearly unhap-
py with losing and Michigan's many blown
opportunities on offense, Michigan coaches
seemed extremely pleased with the defensive
effort. Whenever Carr uses the phrase "out-
standing ball game" - referring to his defend-
ers in this case - he can't be too upset. The
coach appeared confident in his team's ability
to bounce back, move forward and learn from
its mistakes.

You guys displayed the best attributes of a Yost
crowd and its worst flaws, as well. You were
hyped up early but taken out of the game with the
early Irish touchdown. We don't blame you for
being quiet for long portions of the game since it
was a pretty boring affair. When Michigan finally
got back into the game, so did you, rocking the
Big House hard. But this is when you also showed
some immaturity, tossing water bottles and foot-
balls onto the field and hitting football writers
Gabe Edelson and Matt Venegoni. Luckily, Ian
Herbert was unharmed.

We knew the rushing offense would be in
trouble when tight end Tim Massaquoi and
right tackle Mike Kolodziej didn't dress for the
game. Then when Mike Hart went out with his
injury, we prepared for a heavy dose of Chad
Henne throwing the football all over the field.
Kevin Grady did an admirable job filling in
for Hart, but he did fumble the ball again and
botched another handoff late in the game. But
like we always say, the running back unit is
deep enough to sustain injuries, even to an indi-
vidual as important as Hart.

(The imachian &u
STAFF PICKS
Predictions against the
spread for 9/10/05
N . 20 Notre Dame (+7) at No. 3 Michigan
No. 2 Texas (+1) at No. 4 Ohio State
No. .ELSU (+1) at No. 15 Arizona State
No. 8 Iowa (-9) at Iowa St.
South Carolina (+18) at No. 9 Georgia
Akron (+35) at No. 13 Purdue
Louisiana Tech (+30) at No. 10 Florida
No. 16 California (-9) at Washington
No. 22 TCU (-15) at Southern Methodist
The Citadel at No. 11 Florida State (off)
fWber St. at No.24 Fresno State (off)
Florida Intl. at No. 21 Texas Tech (off)
Tulsa (+31} at No. 18 Oklahoma
No. 7 Virginia Tech (-20) at Duke
Army (+27,5) at No. ± Boston College
Best Bet
Record against Spread

Gabe
Edelson

Ian
Herbert

Notre Dame
Ohio State
LSU
Iowa
South Carolina
Akron
Florida
Washington
TCU
Florida State
Fresno Sate
Texas Tech
Oklahoma
Virginia Tech
Boston College
Iowa
10-5 (0-1)

Notre Dame
Ohio State
LSU
Iowa
South Carolina
Akron
Florida
Washington
TCU
Florida State
Fresno State
Texas Tech
Oklahoma
Virginia Tech
Army
Washington
9.(01)

Matt
Venegoni
Michigan
Ohio State
Arizona State
Iowa
South Carolina
Purdue
Louisiana Tech
Califomia
TCU'
Florida State
, , .. ,Fresno State
Texas Tech
Oklahoma
Virginia Tech
Boston College
Iowa
7-8(04)

Stephanie
Wright
Michigan
Ohio State
iLSU
Iowa
Georgia
Purdue
Florida
California
TCU
Florida State
9FresnoState
Texas Tech
Oklahoma'
Virginia Tech
Boston College
Virginia Tech
8-7 (:1W)

MSA President
Jesse Levine

Michigan
Texas
Arizona State
Iowa
South Carolina
Purdue
iorida
California
TCU
Florida State
oresno State,'
Texas Tech
Oklahoma'
Virginia Tech
Boston College
Oklahoma
9S(0-1)

Edelson to quit day job,
pick gamesfull time
In the first week of staff
picks everyone did above
.500 - oh yeah, every-
one but Matt Venegoni. It
was his birthday and that
took priority (definitely an
excuse). Gabe Edelson,
ever the perfectionist, was
not happy with the Iowa
loss. What a jerk. Ian Her-
bert felt pretty sheepish
about picking Washington
as his best bet after Cali-
fornia embarrassed the
Huskies, but he still fin-
ished the weekend solidly.
Virginia Tech saved the
day for Stephanie Wright,
who was giddy about get-
ting her best bet right -
the only person to get a
best bet right. And Jesse
Levine got the "celebri-
ties" off to an above aver-
age start.

IRISH
Continued from page 1B
much of the series to minimize the
fans' impact.
"I wanted to take the crowd out
of the game," Weis said. "This was
a no-huddle offense, but this was
not a hurry-up offense. They're two
different things. This was so that I
didn't have to have guys not hear the
play in the huddle. It was just so that
we could take the noise out of the
game."
The Irish also scored on a sec-
ond-quarter scoring catch by Jeff
Samardzija on a pass that was ini-
tially deflected by Michigan line-
backer Chris Graham. To make
matters worse, Michigan running
back Mike Hart left the game due
to an apparent left leg injury suf-
fered with just over three minutes
remaining in the first quarter. He
never returned, and Carr declined
to elaborate on specifics after the
game. The Wolverines' lone first-
half points came on a 38-yard field
goal by Garrett Rivas less than a
minute into the second quarter.
The tide appeared to be turning
at the start of the second half when
Hart's backup, freshman Kevin
Grady, and Ecker picked up the bulk
of the yardage on a 14-play, 69-yard
drive that ate up the first 5:46 of the
third quarter. But Henne commit-
ted the team's first turnover of the
day by throwing the ball away to
Zbikowski.
"(The interception) was just a poor
decision," Henne said. "It's terrify-
ing. You never want that to happen. I
just didn't take care of the ball down
there."
Notre Dame extended its lead to 17-3
on D.J. Fitzpatrick's 43-yard field goal
just 49 seconds into the fourth.

RYAN WEINER/Daily
Receiver Mario Manningham (86) scored Michigan's lone touchdown late in the game.

Michigan showed signs of life when
Avant made a highlight-reel catch
and turn, keeping his balance and
sprinting down the right sideline for
a 54-yard gain on the following pos-
session, but Henne's goal-line fumble
ended the threat and bailed the Irish
out once again.
"I should have cut back and gotten
into the end zone," Avant said of his
near-score. "I thought I could make
it. I should have lifted my knees up a
little higher. Maybe I could have got-
ten in there."

"There were a lot of opportu-
nities out there, and I just didn't
execute," Henne said. "It wasn't
the pressure. I'm used to that. The
ball wasn't there where it was sup-
posed to be. A couple of (passes)
were high. I just didn't come out
and execute today."
The loss ended the Wolverines'
16-game home winning streak, and
it was Michigan's first defeat at home
to Notre Dame since 1993. The Wol-
verines had beaten the Irish three
straight times in Ann Arbor heading

RYAN WEINER/Daily
Defensive tackle Gabe Watson (78) hurdles a teammate to chase down Notre Dame running back Darius Walker (3).

VENEGONI
Continued from page 11B

hey, it's just football, right?
They may not win the national title
this season, but that doesn't change
our loyalty, right?

wins the Big Ten, then it was a successful
season. And as painful as the loss was,
there is a bright spot to take out of it.
With the exception of the first drive

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