Thursday, January 4, 2018

What's Up With Michigan Wolverine Football?

It's been a while....... but not much to talk about on the high school football front. I thought I would throw out something on University of Michigan football.

The Wolverines finished with a disappointing 8-5 record. Now you may say, "Chris how can a Spartan fan like you say a UM football season was disappointing when you guys finished 3-9 last season?" Expectations from many Michigan fans was a legitimate shot at the B1G East title even though most of the players from the 5th and 6th nationally ranked recruiting classes of Brady Hoke had departed for the NFL, Michigan finished 4th. Most preseason rankings had Michigan right around 10th or 11th in the country, Michigan finished unranked.  Michigan once again lost to their two biggest rivals on the schedule at home. That makes Harbaugh 1-5 against the two rivals. Some Michigan fans boasted that even though they hadn't beaten a team that finished with a winning record during the regular season, that they were a better team than others because they were picked to play on New Year's Day. Well, Michigan was rewarded with a loss against unranked South Carolina in a game that generated the 3rd lowest ticket sales in the bowl game's 32 year history.

Now all is not lost in Ann Arbor. The defense, led by guru Don Brown was one of the best in the country, after all they finished 3rd in total defense. The total defense ranking of #3 in the country is a bit misleading though. UTSA (who?, exactly) was ranked #5 in the country in that same stat. A better stat to look at is scoring defense, that is the only stat that matters other than wins and losses. UM was a solid #13 in the country in that stat but still ranked behind schools like; UTSA, Troy State and Wyoming. 

Michigan must make improvements in a handful of areas. The QB and O-line positions are the biggest concerns. Mississippi transfer Shea Patterson may help at the QB position, but lets face it, at this point he isn't a savior and his best ball came against South Alabama, UT-Martin and Vanderbilt, plus there is a very good chance that he sits 2018. Harbaugh's record at developing QB's at UM should be a concern at this point. He did a nice job with Jake Rudock, but putting it bluntly, he was working with a 5th year guy who had a solid career in a similar offense at Iowa. McCaffery looks like a solid option in 2018, but has anyone really seen this kid play and can Harbaugh be trusted to develop him? 

The offensive line needs a new coach and maybe Tim Drevno and Grey Frey need to move on. Rumor has it the Florida State wants Frey. If FSU wants him, let him go. Bring in an alum who played at the next level and let him coach. Pick any of the former All-Pro players who would be willing to work with the quirky Harbaugh.

The receiving corp needs some major work and could benefit from the alumni base that played in the NFL as well. Seriously pick a guy. I know what your thinking, just because they played doesn't mean they can coach. While that might be true, they would demand respect from a talented receiving corp, that relies on their athletic ability while running poor routes. Show them what route running is all about. 

Finally, Harbaugh needs to go into the submarine again. This grandstanding (believe me, that is what it is) is exhausting and only serves him and not the program. The traveling overseas is a great experience for the kids, but it doesn't appear to do much else. Team cohesiveness appears non-existent (the team, the team, the team was always touted by the great Bo Schembechler), recruiting rankings are starting to drop, showing the only thing that matters is results on the field (I wonder if Rashon Gary is regretting his choice at this point.) I also think (IMHO), that he really needs to start showing loyalty. Maybe he is a loyal guy, but he doesn't appear to show it with his players. It seems to me that sometimes it is better to go with a lesser talent  (easy folks, every player at Michigan is uber-talented, even the 3 star guys are very very good players) and play the guy that works the hardest, is the best teammate and puts the team and Michigan above all else; then ride that guy out. Seriously, did you ever get the feeling that all 3 QB's were looking over the shoulder after every play this season? Meritocracy, which Harbaugh's boast all the time is great on paper, but the most talented teams don't always produce the best results (unless you combine the most talent with the best coach aka., Alabama). I get that talent is only half of that meritocracy equation, but how is it that other programs like Wisconsin and Michigan State succeed (B1G titles) with lesser talent. I would argue that not only is their coaching solid, but it is one that uplifts players and shows loyalty to them as well. I think it could be argued that the players from those schools think their coaches are good guys. I wonder if the players at Michigan think that about Harbaugh? With all this said,  the future should be bright at Michigan, they were one of the youngest teams in the country this year, but some things need to change. 

One last thought, maybe Habaugh's personality is better suited for the NFL where everyone is a high paid pro and they just do their job. Michigan can't find a better coach than Harbaugh, but is he the right fit in the place where once everybody thought he was the perfect fit?

Monday, December 25, 2017

Merry Christmas Friday Night Victor's Fans

Let's look and see what is on the Christmas wish list for our area teams.

Airport: More years like 1998-2012.

Bedford: Jeff Wood coaching for another decade.

Carlson: More of Jack Giarmo.

Dundee: A little bit of that wrestling magic on the gridiron.

Erie Mason: Three more years of Noah Beaudrie and friends.

Flat Rock: Another year of "Find a Way".

Grosse Ile: Two more years of the area's best linebacker, John Blanzy.

Huron: An elusive Huron League title.

Ida: Five more years of great football.

Jefferson: A 2018 week 1 victory.

Milan: More depth to go with the great talent and great coaching staff.

Monroe: Two more years of the area's best running back, Jared Banks.

Riverview: Another year of arguably the best offensive and defensive line play in the state.

SMCC: Another shot at Madison Heights Madison.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

All Huron League 2017

Because the blog started with the Huron League and we cover all eight Huron League teams we will be picking our All League Teams and Players of the Year again. 

We will pick an Offensive Player of the Year, a Defensive Player of the Year and an Overall Player of the Year. We will then pick 11 offensive players, 11 defensive players, a kicker and a punter for our All-League teams. Our Players of the Year will not be included in these All League teams.

1st Team Defense
DL Chris Beck Sr. Milan
DL Tyler Dively Sr. Riverview
DL Thomas Eads Sr. Jefferson
DL Tommy Gardner So. Riverview
LB John Blanzy So. Grosse Ile
LB Kyle Naif Sr. Riverview
LB Chase Smith Sr. Airport
LB Sameer Tayeb Sr. Flat Rock
DB Tristen Hines So. Milan
DB Brett McKay Sr. Huron
DB Steven Rice Jr. Riverview
P    Austin Atherton Sr. Huron



1st Team Offense
QB Jacob Dotson Sr. Flat Rock
RB Mike Foor Sr. Airport
RB Zach Guthrie Sr. Riverview
RB Cam Hitchen Sr. Huron
OL Jack Demare Sr. Riverview
OL Jared Fleck Sr. SMCC
OL Mike Furtney Sr. Milan
OL Mason Hamilton Sr. Flat Rock
OL Nathan Maher Sr. Riverview
E    Cas Sarnaki Sr. Riverview
E    A.J. Harbin Sr. Flat Rock
K   Justin Trout Sr. Airport



Player of the Year
Cam Rogers Sr. Riverview

Offensive Player of the Year
Hunter Aeschbacker Jr. Milan

Defensive Player of the Year
Collin Woolford Sr. SMCC

These are the All League Players that Friday Night Victors considers the best of the best. All players from each of the 8 teams are considered. Players are only picked one side of the ball or the other. This year was extremely tough, because there were so many good players. We don't do 2nd team or honorable mention.


Friday, November 24, 2017

Huron League Player of the Year

Because the blog started with the Huron League and we cover all eight Huron League teams we will be picking our All League Teams and Players of the Year again. 

We will pick an Offensive Player of the Year, a Defensive Player of the Year and an Overall Player of the Year. We will then pick 11 offensive players, 11 defensive players a kicker and a punter for our All-League teams. Our Players of the Year will not be included in these All League teams.

Cam Rogers of Riverview has been named the Huron League Player of the Year. This award epitomizes who we feel is the best overall football player in the Huron League while meaning the most to his team.

The 6-0, 210 lb senior RB/LB/SS ran for 1,310 yards and 18 TD's while recording 74 tackles and an interception from his multiple defensive positions. Rogers led the Pirates to their first league championship since 2004.



Rogers broke his collar bone in the district final against Carlson, but remained the emotional leader of the Bucs who eventually lost in the state semi-finals to Farmington Hills Harrison.

Rogers also plays baseball and has a 3.3 GPA.

Click Here ----> Cam Rogers Highlights

Other players considered for the award were; Mike Furtney (Milan), Zach Guthrie (Riverview), Collin Woolford (SMCC), Hunter Aeschbacker (Milan), Jack Demare (Riverview) and Sameer Tayeb (Flat Rock).


Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Huron League Defensive Player of the Year

Because the blog started with the Huron League and we cover all eight Huron League teams we will be picking our All League Teams and Players of the Year again. 

We will pick an Offensive Player of the Year, a Defensive Player of the Year and an Overall Player of the Year. We will then pick 11 offensive players, 11 defensive players a kicker and a punter for our All-League teams. Our Players of the Year will not be included in these All League teams.

SMCC DB Collin Woolford has been named the All-Huron League Blog Defensive Player of the Year. The 5-8, 185 lb senior has been a starter for the Falcons since his sophomore year.

Woolford recorded 76 tackles, 3.5 TFL's, 7 pass break ups, 1 INT and 2 fumble recoveries for the 7-5 Falcons. The  rugged senior was known for his big hits coming up from his strong safety position.

Woolford was instrumental on both sides of the ball for the Falcons during their small play-off run that saw them recover from a 1-3 start to losing in the Regional final to Madison Heights Madison.

Click Here -----> Collin Woolford Highlights

Other players considered for the award were; Tristen Hines (Milan), John Blanzy (Grosse Ile), Tyler Dively (Riverview) and Sameer Tayeb (Flat Rock).

Huron League Offensive Player of the Year

Because the blog started with the Huron League and we cover all eight Huron League teams we will be picking our All League Teams and Players of the Year again. 

We will pick an Offensive Player of the Year, a Defensive Player of the Year and an Overall Player of the Year. We will then pick 11 offensive players, 11 defensive players a kicker and a punter for our All-League teams. Our Players of the Year will not be included in these All League teams.

Milan RB Hunter Aeschbacker has been named the All-Huron League Blog Offensive Player of the Year. The 5-9, 190 lb junior was a threat to score every time he touched the ball this season.

Aeschbacker ran for 1,274 yards and 13 TD's. He also caught 12 balls for 137 yards and a TD while returning 4 kick-offs for TD's.

Milan qualified for the playoffs for the 5th time in the last 6 seasons and finished in a tie for 2nd place in the Huron League this season with a 5-2 record even though injuries limited the Big Reds to 19 healthy players come playoffs.

Click Here ----> Hunter Aeschbacker Highlights

Other players considered for this award were; Jacob Dotson (Flat Rock), Zach Guthrie (Riverview), Mike Furtney (Milan), and Cam Rogers (Riverview).