Monday, September 22, 2008

Terps rout Eastern Michigan

I didn't get a chance to watch the video of the game so I can't really give much analysis. The offense only punted once all game so that is pretty impressive. The defense appears to need some serious work before facing Clemson this weekend. 

I'll post more by Wednesday after I get a chance to watch the game film.

[UPDATE]

I watched the film the other night and overall I thought the team played well. I'll only give a few short thoughts on some particular topics since I'm not sure what you can take away from this game given that it was Eastern Michigan.

Offense:

I can see why Chris Turner drives Fridge crazy. One play he has a phenomenal throw back across his body for a touchdown to TE Dan Gronknowski and then his misses a wide open receiver by throwing it behind them. He forced a few throws that he shouldn't have, including the interception at the end of the half, but overall he was solid especially on third down.

Some of the other receivers stepped up a little. I'll never figure out why Isaiah Williams can't show any consistency. He is wasting his talent.

I've read some consider this offensive line among Freidgen's best, which is ludicrous. This is actually a fairly mediocre group. The run blocking wasn't great until the end of the game when Portis came in and Franklin called about twenty QB runs in a row.

Eastern Michigan and Middle Tennessee State really attacked the defense in the space behind the linebackers and in front of the safeties. This is a real weak spot in Chris Cosh's scheme and don't you think Clemson will notice that in scouting? In between the underneath zone coverages and the deep zones there is lots of space to exploit for the opponents. This linebacker group is being force to cover more ground this season in pass defense and, with the exception of Adrian Moten, they are not best suited for that role.

The linebacker and the defensive line really need to do a better job at shedding blockers. Seems like once the blocker latches on Maryland's defenders get swallowed up. This will be especially important in the league games. The run defense wasn't all that great against Eastern Michigan.

When the backers or DB's blitz they need to sack the QB, there were at least three sacks that the defense left on the field when blitzers took terrible angles and whiffed on the Eastern Michigan QB. Cosh needs to be more aggressive but the players have to make plays when they are there.

Jamari McCollough got picked on a little but held his own with two big interceptions. He looks like he could be a future star at safety. His early interception changed the whole tone of the game and helped put Eastern Michigan away. Terrell Skinner may be another week away from returning so McCollough's play has been welcome. 

Cory Jackson continues to be an excellent run blocker. He can really get out and block down field unlike most fullbacks who stay right around the line of scrimmage.

I can't point to anything tangible but I think this team is more cohesive now than it was a few weeks ago. I think the QB controversy hurt the team chemistry a little and now that is out of the way this group seems to be gaining a little team unity. They'll need it with the upcoming schedule.

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