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Sunday Morning Brews (10/5/14)

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"They told of dripping stone walls in uninhabited castles and of ivy-clad monastery ruins by midnight, of locked inner rooms and secret dungeons..." -Susan Hill

Alex Goodlett

They are who we thought they were. Michigan fell last night, 26-24, to a resurgent and purely spunky Rutgers team in the old Rutgers Stadium. Behind Devin Gardner, the quarterback position managed to produce more touchdowns (two, both on the ground) than turnovers (a single interception), but Michigan once again lost the turnover battle, which it has done in every game this year. Once again, no receiver stepped up next to Devin Funchess. There have only been four times this season that a receiver who did not wear the #1 caught three passes, and half of those came in the game Funchess was out.

The running backs were again underused, as Derrick Green led a solid and somewhat underfed backfield with 74 yards and 6.2 per carry. At the same time, while Green, Smith, Fleet and Hayes delivered their team a 5.1-yard per carry performance, they were also given the ball a little bit more this time around (including 9 times in the fourth, for 69 yards). This was a very welcome product of not performing in a massive deficit, and it helped Michigan deliver a more competitive performance against a Power 5 foe. The so-called 'recipe' was working more in Michigan's favor, but we all knew this team had the potential, if the staff could indeed exploit it. It's also not surprising that Hoke's staff started making the right adjustments at the pace of two or three games too late.

So, next is Penn State, in a game under the lights. They will go head-to-head with a coach who has scratched and clawed to find every win he can, and Michigan will once again walk onto the field as one of the more talented teams in the country - and one of the more poorly coached.

Hitting the Links Is Bundling Up

Hoke Disagreed 'Very Strongly' With Call

As a long-time NBA fan, I've resigned myself to terrible referee calls deciding games. At this point, my refrain is that you do what you can to take it out of the black and white's hands. That's all you can do.

MGoBlog Reaction

Ace took the night off, as did much of the rest of the post-game Michigan blogosphere. It's hard to say the same thing over and over again, and we still have six more weeks, hopefully not all like this.

MLive's Highlights and Lowlights

Yes, it always has been something else falling apart, which begs the question of the kind of long-term progress possible under Hoke, if he or his staff can't teach football well enough.

Week 6 Stock Report

Basically, the offense is trending up and the defense is trending down. Hoke has been continuously trending down for several weeks, now, which begs the question of how much longer that trend can sustain itself.

Game Photos

I've said it before, and it's worth another time - credit to the RU fans who bring passion and energy to their games.