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Biggest question of the WMU game: The offensive game plan

From start to finish, the offensive game plan was weird as hell.

Western Michigan v Michigan Photo by Rey Del Rio/Getty Images

Last week, I questioned why Michigan didn’t use Chris Evans as much as Karan Higdon.

This week against the Western Michigan Broncos, Evans was used a good amount, but the entire offensive game plan looked real strange to me.

Michigan won the coin toss and elected to receive, something I am usually NEVER okay with. But the Wolverines took the field on offense first and tried to flex their muscles in the face of an inferior foe.

Instead they did the opposite. After a quick completion to Zach Gentry from Shea Patterson for a first down, the Wolverines got conservative yet again (SHOCKER!)

Two yards by Higdon, another two yards by Higdon and a catch for nothing by Evans forced Michigan to punt.

It didn’t take long for Michigan to get the ball back, but more weirdness on offense occurred. Cornerback Ambry Thomas came in on offense and caught a 5-yard pass. Jim Harbaugh has been on and off on his stance with getting Thomas in on offense, but his stance was solidified after seeing that.

Long and fast touchdown runs made the game out of hand at the end of the first quarter. The game was already over.

But only 18 passes were attempted against WMU, one by Dylan McCaffrey and the rest by Patterson.

Meanwhile, Michigan ran the ball 36 times with eight different players. So much for wanting a balanced offensive game plan.

Overall, I wanted to see more passes. There were too many times in this game where there were chances to put an exclamation mark on a drive, but Michigan would instead run the ball and get little to no gain.

Harbaugh has always been a guy that wants to establish the run game. But the run game was established by the end of the third drive. At that point, why not let the ball loose and see what can happen?

I stand by that stance, especially considering many starters were in the game well into the third quarter. If you want to risk Patterson getting hurt in a meaningless game when you’re up by a thousand, I’d expect more throws from him and not just the six he had.

I’d hope to see a more balanced offense next week against another weak opponent at the Big House. You’re not gonna get nearly 156 yards from Higdon and another 86 from Evans against Wisconsin, MSU or OSU. Balance is needed. Make it happen, Harbaugh.