Found September 18, 2013 on
PLAYERS: Taylor Lewan
By now, everybody is aware that Michigan Football picked up, what Taylor Lewan called an embarrassing 28-24 victory over Akron on Saturday. The Zips brought a 27 game road losing streak with them to the Big House and were inside Michigan’s five yard line with a chance to win the game as time expired. The narrow victory seemed to magnify Michigan’s short-comings. So what’s the problem? This is year three of the Brady Hoke era and Michigan’s lovable coach has preached from day one that you win in the trenches and he has made that a point of emphasis in recruiting. Yet last week Akron’s defensive line gave Michigan’s offensive line fits and the Wolverines allowed Zips QB Kyle Pohl to operate with impunity in the pocket. Translation, the Wolverines were getting pushed around by the Zips and that is simply unacceptable. Taylor Lewan is an All-American left tackle, yet Michigan has not been able to generate a consistent rushing attack with their running backs. We’ve heard all about the three new starters along the interior of the offensive line, but as Hoke likes to say, this is Michigan. If the starters aren’t getting the job done, is it time to look at some other options? Michigan’s roster is littered with blue chip offensive linemen. “Like I said, it’s alway been in pencil and we’re going to continue to force people to compete at the position.” Al Borges said at his weekly press conference when asked about the offensive line depth chart. My guess is that Michigan will trot out the same offensive line at UConn this week, but the leash is getting shorter. Michigan’s starting right tackle, Michael Schofield said on Monday that the offensive line was all over the place against Akron and that they played sloppy. He stressed that they have to improve their fundamentals and techniques. “There is an expectation that we should continue to improve,” Al Borges said. “That’s my biggest issue with this game football game is I don’t think we took a step forward, that irritates me more than anything.” Defense Michigan did not record a sack in the Akron game and the Wolverines have notched just five sacks through three games. Another big red flag with the defense is that they rank 98th nationally in third-down defense. Defensive coordinator Greg Mattison started off his weekly presser by addressing the lack of a pass rush. “I’ve got to coach it better,” Mattison said. “Our guys are working hard at it and I’ll put that on me, we’ve got to just get better at it.” Turnovers (AP Photo/Tony Ding) The Wolverines rank 99th nationally in turnover margin and Devin Gardner has accounted for seven of Michigan’s eight turnovers. He’s tossed a whopping six interceptions, including two pick-sixes and fumbled once. In the Akron game, Gardner racked up 4 turnovers. ”I made a lot of bad decisions,” Gardner explained in the post-game presser. “Probably played my worst game ever, and it won’t happen again.” Gardner oozes talent and has big play abilities. Despite his turnover woes, he was one of the main reasons Michigan wasn’t upset by Akron. He’ll have to play smarter going forward and I’m confident he will improve his decision making. Sound the alarm? Despite the debacle that Saturday turned out to be, it’s not time to sound the alarm and for panic to ensue. This is still the same football team that scored 100 points in the first two games and beat a good Notre Dame team. They’re still 3-0 and have all their goals before them. “We want to go back out there and show what we’re really made of,” said James Ross III. It will be very interesting to see how Michigan plays on Saturday against a UConn team that surrendered over 500 yards of offense last week. If the Wolverines come out with another sloppy, unfocused effort then it might be time to sound the alarm. You can follow me on twitter @isportsRob If you would like to receive an email notification each time a Michigan Football and/or Basketball story is posted you can fill out the Email Notification Form.

Michigan football at UConn game preview

Last week, Michigan might have gotten the wake up call that it needed when they were nearly defeated by the Akron Zips. Despite the lackluster performance, the Wolverines came out the game victorious, winning by a score of 28-24. This Saturday, Michigan will go on the road for the first time as they face of against the University of Connecticut Huskies. The game will kickoff at 8... Poll: Harbaugh or Hoke?

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Hoke Talks Potential OL Shuffle, Injuries

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Gardner Moves Forward, ‘Can’t Wait’ For UConn

Michigan quarterback Devin Gardner is ready to play another game. Gardner talks about moving on from his performance against Akron, what the week of practice has been like, encouraging words from Johnny Manziel, and his take on the 8 p.m. kickoff (VIDEO included).

Borges Talks OL Competition, Gardner's Growth

Michigan offensive coordinator Al Borges isn’t panicking. Unable to find a true rhythm with the run or pass in the win over Akron, the long time coordinator discusses the competition and play of his offensive line, Devin Gardner’s mistakes and development, and the run game (VIDEO included).

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After one of its worst performances in the Big House, No. 15 Michigan is about to take its show on the road. And Wolverines coach Brady Hoke is going to be staying up nights thinking about it. ''It's something I always worry about, and it is worse because we've got such a young team,'' Hoke said about this week's trip to East Hartford to face Connecticut...

Monday GoBlueWolverine Chat Transcript

GoBlueWolverine's Tom Beaver and Kyle Bogenschutz talk Michigan/Akron, look ahead to Connecticut, plenty of basketball and basketball recruiting including a new 2014 name to know, and, did Taylor Lewan accidentally preview a change to come?
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