ReadingRambler's picture


MEMBER SINCE   February 02, 2017

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Comment 13 Mar 2020


Not really.

If you check out the BWI forums, there was one guy who posted a troll thread sarcastically asking if people felt bad for Iowa. Most people told that guy that he was being a prick.

There were some jokes at Iowa's expense before the cancellation but now most people are sad.

It always depends on the forum. At least as far as wrestling, BSD and BWI have some of the same guys who set the tone of the forum, and those leaders usually aren't going to be dicks to Iowa at all, let alone at a time when everyone is suffering.

Comment 12 Mar 2020

Boys, I'm sorry.

Iowa wrestling had a hell of a good season, and, after the Cory Clark throw a few years back, I was looking forward to seeing whatever goofy celebration Terry Brands had in mind for winning the team title.

Stay safe, folks.

Comment 01 Feb 2020

Lee's bar-half combo is pretty interesting as regards pinning the wrestler. It's perfect for getting turns, so I wouldn't want to change it. That's why he gets so many tech falls. On the other hand, I don't know, it's almost like he makes it too tight for pins - for one thing sometimes the ref can't see it, and if you can't see it, you can't call it. That's the rule. I don't know enough about wrestling technique to know if there's a better way to do it.

On the other hand, good to see Lee's still the same freaking animal on top he's been since he was like 12 years old.

Comment 24 Dec 2019

This is always a bad idea. Friday night Buckeye football in 2019 even prompted some big high schools in that state to ask their fans to boycott that week's OSU game because Friday night college football costs high schools a lot of money.

You're basically asking college football and high school football to compete against each other. How that is good for the sport is beyond me.

Comment 18 Nov 2019

If Minnesota doesn't give up that kick-catch interference penalty, I doubt that the Hawkeyes would have scored to get to 23 points. They quite possibly would have finished the second half scoreless. In which case Minnesota probably loses 20-19 on a missed extra point. That would have been hilarious.

Comment 18 Nov 2019

Did you guys watch the game? Minnesota missed a lot of tackles in the first half. They also dropped numerous passes. For example: Bateman's drop on 2nd and long probably cost them 3 points late in the 2nd quarter, and Johnson's drop also cost 3-7 points. And of course their kicker missed an extra point (I don't blame him for missing from 50 yards).

The responsibility lies with the coaching staff, but, yes, a lack of execution was a huge reason why Minnesota lost.

Comment 18 Nov 2019

This is an absurdly homerish take. That was absolutely a late hit, and Iowa was lucky that we have college rules instead of NFL rules. In the NFL, it would have been an automatic first down (Fleck's ravings would have cost the Gophers yardage, but not the first down). That was a very, very stupid play by the young Belton.

Comment 10 Nov 2019

Well, that was a very hysterical thing to say.

C'mon. With this attitude (calling each other ISU fans for Pete's sake!!!), what's the point of even watching the games? 

And all this stuff about trying to win the Big Ten this year is totally nuts anyway. Whoever plays Ohio State in Indianapolis is gonna get their doors blown off. I wouldn't even bet on PSU to cover in Columbus. The only hope for anyone else is that OSU's entire team gets busted.

Comment 14 Oct 2019

Just out of curiosity, when you say at the end of this that the refs were bad, what do you have in mind?

Because all of my PSU fans think the refs were bad in a way that massively hurt PSU and really helped keep Iowa in the game.

And I actually think they have an argument.

But I'm curious.

Of course I'm more curious as to what happened to Iowa's interior offensive line coaching.

Comment 13 Oct 2019

Iowa didn't play very well, but this reaction is over the top negative.

As far as Stanley goes, he gave up two sacks and got pressured a lot - he also avoided pressure a couple of times to make nice throws downfield. The idea that a guy that slow could play dramatically better than he did, against the kind of pressure he faced, is loony. Stanley made two really bad plays: 1) The miss on 2nd and goal, and 2) The interception - although that was under heavy pressure. When given opportunities, there were more on-the-money throws than errant throws.

And then some of the negativity is just exaggerated. Like, you make it sound as if Noah Cain ran over the Iowa safeties. When did that ever happen? Seriously, find me a single play where Cain made anyone look remotely like Frank Duong. I know everyone is upset, because, in the end, Cain managed to squeeze through two PSU linemen to get a first down, but this is also a guy whose longest run of the night was 12. Iowa's defense did as well as could be expected. This PSU offense is very talented, very well-coached (that shotgun toss stuff they did last night was a new wrinkle they put in for Iowa), and has produced excellent results. 

Also, Penn State's defense and offense were both absolutely elite entering the game, statistically, so 1) The idea that Iowa's offense, with its massive OL problems, could score a lot is absurd and 2) The fact that Iowa was a few plays away from winning should actually make these reviews a heck of a lot less angry than they are. 

But maybe I'm biased because my expectations were met. Bill Connelly's stats predicted this game at Penn State 28, Iowa 22. My own prediction was 10 points less for each team - Penn State 18, Iowa 12.

But, as I've said above, what can't be disputed is that Iowa has lots of things it could sharpen up, as a program, to have better chances in games like this one and (especially) last week in Ann Arbor.

Comment 13 Oct 2019

Of course it's not the stupidest concept.

For a team like Iowa, with its footprint, that concept makes sense.

It's almost exactly the same concept as Wisconsin's offense!

But Wisconsin destroyed Michigan and crushed Michigan State (the worst defeat suffered by a Dantonio team in over a decade). Michigan State, talent-wise, has a very good front four and a very good middle linebacker but Wisconsin exploited their (possible) tiredness and just beat the heck out of them.

Why the difference?

First of all, because Wisconsin's defense is more aggressive. The framework is conservative - cover 2 - but Wisconsin, by switching to more 3-4 looks, has been able to generate more pressure on offenses.

Second, because Wisconsin consistently executes their offensive plan to a much sharper degree. This is largely because Wisconsin's interior offensive linemen have been, on average, a lot better than what Iowa has had for many years.

Third, Wisconsin has some better subtleties worked in to their offense, like jet sweeps, that work very well at removing pressure from their base plays.

Fourth, Wisconsin's play-calling is usually a bit sharper than what is seen from Brian Ferentz. (Although Brian really didn't call a bad game at all last night)

So, I really don't have a problem with what Brian said, or at least what Goon says Brian said. The big problem is the potential framing of the issue as burning clock first, scoring point second.

The proper way to frame it would be, "Our goal is to score as many point as we can while, ideally, burning as much clock as humanly possible."

Comment 10 Oct 2019

Coming from someone who's a PSU sorta-fan,  who nonetheless watches many of their games, I can tell you that Franklin hasn't had a bad "game plan" in a long time.

Under John Donovan, most PSU game plans were bad.

And, by the way, for as sketchy or bad as Brian Ferentz may be, he is NOT as bad as John Donovan. It's not even in the same ball park. John Donovan tried to run the wishbone - twice! - with CHRISTIAN HACKENBERG! John Donovan ran the ball on every single 3rd and short for an entire season - and, yes, his total lack of concern for tendencies was, as you probably guessed, rewarded with a terrible third down conversion rate. Count yourselves lucky you don't have him as your coach. A friend of mine, a blogger, compiled an entire database of stupid Donovan decisions and his many crimes against football.


But Franklin managed to rid himself of this guy (although I still can't believe he employed him) and get Joe Moorhead. Thus PSU got a lot better.

Where Franklin has a bad reputation is in losing games in the second half, and, in my opinion, this reputation is somewhat well deserved. I would much rather have Bill O'Brien or Joe Paterno coaching with a lead than Franklin. When holding a lead against tough competition, the whole team gets this "tight" look to them, like they're ready to pucker and waffle. I don't know if this will ever change, or if it's just a Franklin tendency. My suspicion is the latter.

And sometimes he has a dud of a performance, like the Kentucky bowl game, which was a horrible job by the PSU coaches from beginning to end. But honestly, they've done well most of the time. I think Ricky Rahne (OC) and Brent Pry (DC) do good jobs.

Comment 07 Oct 2019

Shea Patterson actually played worse than Stanley.


For instance, here we have a play that resulted in a sack, despite a defensive breakdown, because Shea Patterson 1) CANNOT anticipate throws and 2) Can't read zone defenses either.

Michigan didn't try very many intermediate routes in this game most because they were (justifiably) afraid that Patterson would throw interceptions. That's still very weak on their part as coaches, but I can understand if they're afraid of their own passer.
Unless Dylan McCaffrey is injured, there's no excuse for not playing him over Patterson.
Anyway, yeah, Stanley was better than the Michigan QB.
Comment 07 Oct 2019

Also, the "-3 in turnover margin" is a bit deceptive since Stanley's last interception was, effectively, a turnover on downs - incomplete pass - that happened to get tipped into being a pick. And actually, it ended up costing Michigan about 5 yards in meaningless field position. LOL

The first two picks were bad, though. And one cost Iowa at least 3 points before the half.

So, yay, Iowa was effectively -2 in turnover margin. That's much better, right?? 0_0

Comment 07 Oct 2019

Well, it was a pretty simple game schematically.

Iowa's game plan, as it developed, made some sense. Their interior OL - particularly Banwarts - were doing really badly in the run blocking, and frankly only Wirfs looked consistently competent. Michigan, quite frankly, is rather dumb or obstinate as a coaching staff: when Iowa motioned Tyler Goodson to the top of the field, remember, Michigan simply left the linebacker (Glasgow) on him, in a cornerback type position. The result was an easy first down catch for the Hawks. Again, Don Brown may not be a total moron, but his coaching results in some hellaciously stupid mismatches. Iowa tried to exploit them, but, Michigan had a counter: lots and lots of blitzes, for which the Iowa offensive line was worse than unprepared. 

Iowa's play-calling wasn't great, but that's because Brian Ferentz is limited in this area. Like Anatoly Dyatlov would say, he's not great, not terrible.

The other thing to keep in mind is that the officiating Saturday was quite bad, and made Iowa's situation worse. This is to be expected: the refs in this league will not call defensive holding against Michigan DBs, in Ann Arbor, more than 2 or 3 times a game. They also ignored some holdings by the Michigan offense, and only started calling holding on Iowa in the 4th quarter once the Iowa blockers started getting desperate. That attitude of "let 'em play" favors Michigan's defense.

The PI non-call on the Martin play was ridiculous, and probably cost Iowa 7 points. (also worth mentioning that Cole Banwarts missed a block on the previous play, which went 5 yards, and could have gone all the way in otherwise). Michigan's obstinate "run man until we die" passing defense is relatively simple to beat, if you can get time to throw, or the QB is mobile. Iowa could not keep Stanley up right, and the defensive holding often took care of the rest.

Stanley's three interceptions were all unfortunate, although the third wasn't his fault. Of the three, the second was by far the worst, for it cost Iowa an opportunity at points. Overall, Stanley's play was not as bad as it looked - by the end of the game, he had very little time to throw, and his receivers began to drop passes. In particular, Wieting and Ragaini. Stanley made several "big-time" throws again, but, all for naught. His lack of mobility was a definite factor, but, that's what he is, and he can't be harshly criticized for his nature.

Defensively, I'm actually not convinced this game says a lot about Iowa. They did fine, and played with decent intensity, but the honest truth is that Jim Harbaugh and Josh Gattis did a HORRIBLE JOB coaching their offense. Michigan changed their scheme over the off-season, and now runs a zone read type of run game. But the problem for them is, Patterson only keeps like 3 times a game! If that! So there's no threat there, and a team like Iowa can just hone in on the tailback and turn every rush play into a short gain. And that's what happened. Meanwhile, Michigan only ran two possessions - TWO!!! - where they tried a serious downfield passing game. These two possessions resulted in a touchdown, and a missed field goal opportunity. So the only two times Michigan actually went to its strength, they succeeded. Naturally, Michigan chose not to try this more often. Perhaps this is because they mistrust Patterson (who isn't great, once he comes off his first read from the pocket). I don't know. It's stupid.

I would frankly describe this game as unique. Feel free to be down on the Iowa coaches, but the Michigan coaches, in my opinion, were worse. What Harbaugh and Gattis are doing is total nonsense. They out-coached themselves but won anyway. For all of the criticism of Kirk Ferentz as a stale and staid coach, Jim Harbaugh, when left to his middle-aged instincts, makes for a drearier experience. I hope Michigan loses to Penn State, Michigan State, and Ohio State by a combined score of at least 110-20.

I regret watching it!

Comment 07 Oct 2019

Sorry, but that's not really true. I suggest that careful study of the film will show a few things:

1) Wirfs was fine.

2) As per usual against better teams, Jackson was merely average.

3) The center was average.

4) The left guard was slightly below-average.

5) The starting right guard, Banwarts, was dreadful. His replacement, Paulsen, was a marginal improvement.

Who wants to volunteer for the study?

Comment 01 Oct 2019

From what I've seen out of Michigan, I think this is Nate Stanley's game to win or lose.