header pic

Perhaps the BEST B1G Forum anywhere, here at College Football Fan Site, CFB51!!!

The 'Old' CFN/Scout Crowd- Enjoy Civil discussion, game analytics, in depth player and coaching 'takes' and discussing topics surrounding the game. You can even have your own free board, all you have to do is ask!!!

Anyone is welcomed and encouraged to join our FREE site and to take part in our community- a community with you- the user, the fan, -and the person- will be protected from intrusive actions and with a clean place to interact.


Author

Topic: ELA September 28 Breakdown

 (Read 2014 times)

ELA

  • Global Moderator
  • Hall of Fame
  • *****
  • Posts: 13668
  • Liked:
ELA September 28 Breakdown
« on: September 25, 2019, 09:20:04 AM »
#12 Penn State Nittany Lions (3-0) at Maryland Terrapins (2-1)
8:00 (Fri) - College Park, MD - FS1
Imagine the build up for this one if Maryland hadn't turtled against Temple?  The Terps were America's darling, running up and down the field in their first two games.  They scored just 17 points against the Owls, and are still #2 in the Big Ten in scoring offense.  They'd have two weeks of build up to a Friday Prime Time home game against the team they hate the most in the conference, dating back to Penn State's days as an Eastern Independent.  I brought up two weeks ago how long it had been since Byrd Stadium hosted a game between ranked teams.  They'll have to wait a little longer now.  I think it's pretty clear that Maryland's offense is the same thing it's been the past two years.  They can always run the ball, but it falls apart when the quarterback struggles with inaccuracy.  That's what happened to Josh Jackson two weeks ago.  After completing nearly 60% of his passes, for 8.7 ypa through Maryland's first two games, he completed just 39.5% of his passes for under 5 ypa.  A lot of that had to do with the pressure Temple got on him, sacking Jackson 4 times, after being sacked just once in his first two games combined.  That has to be the plan for Penn State as well, who ranks #4 in the Big Ten, with 3.7 sacks per game.  They've had to with a secondary that hasn't played up to their billing yet.  Penn State's defense ranks #12 in the Big Ten, surrendering 252.7 passing yards per game, also #12 in both opponent completion percentage, and yards per attempt, while having the second fewest interceptions with just 2.  If the Nittany Lions front can't get to Jackson like Temple did, I think what we saw was a one game blip.  Jackson was a 60% passer during his Virginia Tech tenure, had never had a game where he completed less than 45% of his passes, or had a QBR below 30.  And that was with a Virginia Tech roster with far less offensive talent than Maryland has.  The Penn State offense has been effective, but hasn't looked at all like we expected.  Sean Clifford has been better than I expected, and the run game has been as good as anyone in the conference.  But it's not Ricky Slade, it's tailback by committee, and Slade has been the least effective.  Clifford is leading the team in rush attempts with 25, averaging 4.5 ypc.  Then Ricky Rahne has split the tailback carries between four players; Slade, along with Journey Brown, Devyn Ford and Noah Cain.  Brown has the most touches with 7 carries per game, Slade the least with 4.  The problem is Slade is averaging just 1.8 ypc.  He has to give them more.  At this point, I think the running back by committee is there, until it stops working, even if Slade becomes the guy he was expected to be.  Byrd Stadium's intimidation factor is fairly hit or miss, but for a Friday night game against Penn State?  I think it will be rocking.  Jackson has a bounceback game, against a suspect Nittany Lion secondary, and Sean Clifford struggles in his first road start, having only previously played in mop up duty in blowout wins in Champaign and Pittsburgh.
MARYLAND 31, PENN STATE 30

Northwestern Wildcats (0-1, 1-2) at #8 Wisconsin Badgers (1-0, 3-0)
NOON - Madison, WI - ABC
Wisconsin's defense may yet be every bit as elite as they have looked.  At the same time, Wisconsin's first three opponents have offensive SP+ of #122 (South Florida), #120 (Central Michigan), and #72 (Michigan).  So I'm not sure how much we can know yet.  And we'll get to wait another week, because Northwestern (#126) is the worst offense they've faced to date.  I think Pat Fitzgerald surprised some folks when Clemson quarterback Hunter Johnson wasn't named the starter Day 1, with a battle with the returning T.J. Green extending into the opener against Stanford.  Green's season ending injury certainly cleared things up right?  Nope.  After a third straight lackluster performance, where he was 15-26 for 88 yards and a pick, Johnson was benched in favor of 3rd string quarterback Aidan Smith, who in his fourth year on campus had never seen the field.  Smith was actually worse, going 4-11 for 38 yards and 2 picks.  It's Hunter Johnson or bust, and while every year I say THIS is the year Northwestern doesn't rebound from a bad start, Johnson just looks horrible.  Really, his receivers deserve better, bailing him out at least four times with amazing catches on bad throws.  It's also looking more and more like Drake Anderson has to be the back, with Isaiah Bowser so far unable to recapture his 2018 mojo.  Granted he was coming back from injury, facing arguably the top defense in the nation.  But he had just 39 yards on 3.0 ypc, with over half of those yards coming on one run.  The Northwestern defense is better than the final score would indicate, they simply got put in bad situation after bad situation.  They better get a lot better against the run this week though.  The numbers look great, holding MSU to 109 rushing yards, on just 2.7 ypc.  But they allowed the Spartan's top two rushers to average 4.7 ypc on 20 carries.  They made that up by holding MSU's quarterbacks, late game mop up duty RBs, and a failed trick play end around to 3 yards on 19 carries to buffer the overall numbers.  If Elijah Collins and Connor Heyward could run on them, oh boy, it's Jonathan Taylor time.  Taylor absolutely shredded Michigan's defense last week, and only played a portion of the game.  It will be interesting to see how much he plays, or if there are lingering injury issues, because for the first time in forever, I'm not sold that Wisconsin has a stable back there.  Bradrick Shaw and Garrett Groshek combined for 93 yards on 7 carries, but each had one long run, and the back who saw the most action behind Taylor, Nakia Watson, looked awful.  Wisconsin can win this week without Taylor, and next week against Kent State, but I'd like to see them limit his workload a little bit before they have Michigan State, Ohio State and Iowa in a three game stretch, where a fresh and healthy Taylor is a necessity.
WISCONSIN 37, NORTHWESTERN 10

Rutgers Scarlet Knights (0-1, 1-2) at #20 Michigan Wolverines (0-1, 2-1)
NOON - Ann Arbor, MI - BTN
I thought Michigan needed the early bye week badly, both to get healthy, and to get some of the offensive kinks ironed out.  Turned out, they still had injuries at the skill positions, and the kinks, far from getting worked out, were exposed farther, namely the quarterbacks struggling with accuracy, and the offensive line continuing to look quite bad at run blocking.  Shea Patterson completed just 43.8% of his attempts, so Dylan McCaffrey came in, completed 37.5% before getting concussed, and Joe Milton rounded out the group going 0-2.  Through 3 games, the new look Michigan offense is #12 in the Big Ten in yards per carry, completion percentage and yards per pass attempt.  So in terms of overall yards per play?  You got it, #12, ahead of just Minnesota and Northwestern.  But while last week gave everyone another chance to point out how Harbaugh fails to win the big games at Michigan, the one thing he consistently does is handle business against lesser competition.  That may sound like a backhanded complement, but it's not.  Ask the Buckeyes about that, when they went 2-0 against Michigan, 2-0 in Big Ten Championship Games, 2-0 in NY6 bowls, 9-1 against teams with 9 or more wins, but missed out on College Football Playoff appearances due to losses to a 5 loss Iowa in 2017 and a 7 loss Purdue last year.  Michigan has lost one game to a single digit win team since Brady Hoke left.  So that probably spells trouble for Rutgers.  Remember two years ago, after losses to Michigan State and Penn State where the Wolverines put up 10 and 13 points respectively, Michigan stood tied 7-7 with Rutgers midway through the second quarter at home, following 2 punts and a pick, that Harbaugh finally benched the embattled John O'Korn, inserted Brandon Peters, and Michigan scored three consecutive touchdowns.  With Dylan McCaffrey out this week, Patterson probably has a longer leash now than O'Korn did then, but if the offense struggles, would anyone be surprised to see Joe Milton get an honest shot?  What is there to lose?  With McCaffrey out, it wouldn't necessarily create any immediate issue between those two.  I don't think it gets to that point.  It's clear that the Michigan offensive line was overrated, but they aren't as bad as they've looked either, and Rutgers is still surrendering a Big Ten worst 4.9 ypc on the ground.  This is a perfect chance, probably better than a bye week for Michigan to get their line, and their run game in order.
MICHIGAN 40, RUTGERS 13

Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders (1-2) at #14 Iowa Hawkeyes (1-0, 3-0)
NOON - Iowa City, IA - espn2
It's tough to say how good or bad Middle Tennessee is, after getting smacked around by a pair of Power 5 opponents in Michigan (40-21) and Duke (41-18), around a win over FCS Tennessee State.  That wound up being a 19 point win, due to a pair of late touchdowns, but the Blue Raiders led by just 5 with 5 minutes to play.  The biggest question was replacing quarterback Brent Stockstill, the greatest player in program history, the school's all-time leading passer, son of the head coach, the defending Conference USA MVP.  After three games, quarterback is the least of the Blue Raiders' concerns.  Asher O'Hara sliced up Michigan, Tennessee State and Duke, and has a completion percentage north of 70% on the season, averaging 8.8 ypa.  He's got some wheels too, with an 18 yard touchdown run against Michigan, and then running for 170 yards over the last two games.  What Middle Tennessee can't afford to do is continue to fall behind early, and force him to throw the ball as often as he is.  The Blue Raiders are throwing the ball 55.9% of the time, 24th highest in the country...with a first time starter.  With Stockstill last year, Middle Tennessee threw just 51.2% of the time.  It's not due to struggles in the run game, they are averaging 5.0 ypc, they were just never within two scores of Michigan after the 12:54 mark of the second quarter, and with Duke after the 0:18 mark of the first quarter.  O'Hara is patient, and willing to work those high percentage throws.  Only 2 qualified Group of 5 quarterbacks (Frank Harris at UTSA and Brady White at Memphis) have a higher completion percentage.  So Iowa needs to make him uncomfortable, or he will dink and dunk his way down the field.  The problem is that Iowa has been unable to do that.  A.J. Epenesa and Chauncey Golston were expected to be as good as any DE pair in the conference.  Instead the Hawkeyes are tied with Rutgers for the fewest sacks in the Big Ten, and at 3.30%, rank #106 nationally.  Opponents have converted 100% of 3rd/4th and less than 2 against the Hawkeyes, but on the whole Iowa's defense is 4th in the Big Ten at opponents 3rd down conversion rate at just 25.7%.  Iowa needs to win those early downs, avoid those 3rd and shorts, and force O'Hara to push the ball down the field a little bit.  Really, it probably won't matter, because Nathan Stanley should be able to pass the ball at will.  Opponents are completing 71.7% of their passes against the Blue Raiders, 10th worst in the conference.  Iowa should roll, but it would be nice to see Stanley really get on track, particularly with his tight ends, who have a combined 5 catches this year.
IOWA 42, MIDDLE TENNESSEE 10

Minnesota Golden Gophers (3-0) at Purdue Boilermakers (1-2)
3:30 - West Lafayette, IN - espn2
These two teams met in TCF Bank Stadium last year on November 10, in very different places.  The Boilermakers were sitting at 4-2 in the Big Ten, 1 game out of first place in the West, having beat #2 Ohio State and #19 Iowa in two of the prior three weeks.  Minnesota gave up 55 points to Illinois, had fired their defensive coordinator, and were just 1-5 in the Big Ten.  The Gophers trucked Purdue, running out to a 41-3 lead, winning 41-10.  That has kicked off a run where Minnesota has won 6 of 7, including a bowl victory and their first Axe win since 2003.  The Boilermakers have since lost 5 of 7, with the wins being against Indiana and Vanderbilt.  Less than a year after a very surprising Gopher win, Minnesota finds themselves favored in West Lafayette.  For Purdue to have any shot, Elijah Sindelar needs to be cleared from concussion protocol.  Gary Patterson typically fields a good defense, but Jack Plummer's 44.8% completion percentage and 5.8 QBR from the TCU loss, won't allow Purdue to beat many teams.  And after seeing the Horned Frogs give up over 400 yards and 41 points to SMU last weekend, Purdue's 204 yard, 13 point effort is even more alarming.  Plummer's lack of accuracy essentially rendered Purdue's receivers useless.  Only tight end Bryce Hopkins played up to expectations in that game.  And if Purdue isn't getting anything from their receivers, they have no offense.  The Boilermakers averaged under a yard per carry, bringing their season average down to 2.1 ypc, 4th worst in the FBS.  We knew that graduations and injuries were going to hamper the running back group, but the totally green interior line has been worse than feared.  They rank #128 in the FBS in total line yards, and are dead last in opportunity rate, meaning the percentage of carries that go for 4 yards (excluding plays with less than 4 yards available), at just 28.3%.  The NCAA average is about 48%.  The trench concerns are on both sides of the ball, with the Boilermakers also having the second worst run defense in the Big Ten.  TCU couldn't pass at all, but they ran for 346 yards on 6.0 ypc against Purdue, with a pair of 100 yard rushers.  Uh oh, here comes a Minnesota team that returns Shannon Brooks, to add to a backfield that already boasts a pair of 1,000 yard rushers in Rodney Smith and Mohamed Ibrahim, giving Gopher fans images of their early 2000s stables, and is rolling with...2.6 ypc?  Second worst in the Big Ten?  Purdue at least has the excuse that even if their line were playing better, they don't have the backs to take advantage, Minnesota can make no such claim.  Their line has also struggled in similar areas to Purdue.  Not quite as much, but Purdue can at least pass block.  Minnesota is not just not run blocking, but surrendering a Big Ten worst 3.7 sacks per game, despite throwing the ball less than anyone.  No surprise their sack rate of 14.29% is among the worst in the nation.  If Sindelar plays, this game is a toss up, but I have some faith that Minnesota can find their ground game against this run defense.
MINNESOTA 34, PURDUE 27

Indiana Hoosiers (0-1, 3-1) at #25 Michigan State Spartans (1-0, 3-1)
3:30 - East Lansing, MI - BTN
Peyton Ramsey has done an admirable job filling in as the Indiana starting quarterback, a job that had been his the previous two years.  It would have been easy for Ramsey to stick his name in the transfer portal, as many do now when they lose a quarterback competition, but he stuck around, and the coaches rewarded it by having him, and not prized transfer recruit Jack Tuttle, fill in for injured starter Michael Penix.  Ramsey is second in the Big Ten in completion percentage, improving on what Penix did.  But if Ramsey is under center Saturday, it could be trouble for Indiana.  Penix is able to stretch the field more, and is the bigger running threat, and that looks to be Indiana's only chance against a defense that currently ranks #1 in the nation in SP+.  You want to fight the Spartans in a box, in your first game without your injured starting left tackle and captain Coy Cronk?  Good luck.  The dink and dunk offense has been what has given Michigan State problems in recent years, but that was when the strength of the Spartans' defense was the secondary, leaving guys on islands and blitzing linebackers, while teams like Northwestern and Indiana simply got the ball out quickly to where the linebackers had vacated.  This defense is strongest up front, and is blitzing less, leaving less space to complete those throws underneath.  It sort of feels right now like if Michigan State can reach 20 points against anyone except probably Ohio State, that might be enough.  The problem is that's not a given, and even the reassurance that Arizona State's defense was really good is gone after seeing Colorado move the ball easily on them.  Moving the ball has started to come easier for the Spartans, but the major mistakes, missed field goals, penalties, and turnovers, have prevented the scoreboard from reflecting that.  The first team offense's last five drives against Northwestern resulted in 3 touchdowns, 1 field goal, and one missed field goal, so they need to keep that momentum rolling.  I do think Indiana's offense has consistently given MSU's defense enough fits that they move the ball some between the 20s, but unless they hit some big plays, they don't have enough of a running game to finish off drives, and I think struggle to finish off drives in the red zone.
MICHIGAN STATE 31, INDIANA 16

***BIG TEN GAME OF THE WEEK***
#5 Ohio State Buckeyes (1-0, 4-0) at Nebraska Cornhuskers (1-0, 3-1)
7:30 - Lincoln, NE - ABC
ESPN College Gameday rolls into Lincoln, NE for just the second time since 2001, and the first time since 2007.  It marks the 7th time ever the show will be in Lincoln, making the 12 year drought easily the longest of any school with at least 4 episodes.  The new longest streak is surprisingly Gainesville, which hasn't hosted since October 20, 2012, one week prior to the last time it went to Norman, October 27, 2012.  The Colorado loss, and close call in Champaign has taken a little bit of the shine off of the preseason expectations of this game, but it's still Lincoln in Prime Time.  Justin Fields has never had to perform in anything close to this, his only prior road start being a noon kick in Bloomington, in a stadium that maybe had more Buckeye fans than Hoosiers.  Nebraska better hope that crowd helps, because no defense has been able to slow down the Ohio State offense, and I have little faith that Nebraska's will be the first.  That is nothing new for Ohio State, but what is, is how great the defense is playing, making the Buckeyes the only school to rank top 5 nationally in both Offensive and Defensive SP+.  The hiring of Greg Mattison appears to be paying immediate dividends.  Nebraska's biggest concern isn't offense or defense though, it's special teams, which was not rectified last week, with a critical chip shot field goal miss that gave Illinois a chance.  Considering how much Ohio State is going to score against everybody, and Nebraska's ongoing issues, I'd be surprised if every 4th and manageable inside the 35 isn't 4 down territory.  Defensively, the Cornhuskers will have to hope to continue their trend of forcing turnovers, because Ohio State simply has too many weapons.  It makes the decision of Urban Meyer to keep Zach Smith around even more curious due to just how much improvement Ohio State has seen from the wide receiver position since Brian Hartline took over.  Mike Weber leaving early?  No worries, Master Teague III is a better pairing with J.K. Dobbins anyway.  Even if the Nebraska defense is able to force turnovers, can their offense hold onto the ball?  Nebraska leads the Big Ten in both turnovers created, and turnovers given.  At home, in prime time, with Gameday there, it will be electric, and that will keep Nebraska afloat for maybe a half, but this is the best ball I've seen from Ohio State since the end of the 2014 season.
OHIO STATE 42, NEBRASKA 23
« Last Edit: September 27, 2019, 01:09:12 PM by ELA »

ELA

  • Global Moderator
  • Hall of Fame
  • *****
  • Posts: 13668
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2019, 11:17:11 AM »
Noon games all in

Big Beef Tacosupreme

  • Player
  • ****
  • Default Avatar
  • Posts: 843
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2019, 12:29:04 PM »
I also think Maryland will beat Penn State. 

IMO, Maryland has better skill position players than Michigan. Unfortunately, their offensive line isn’t great.  I don’t think that will matter too much, because Penn State has had trouble bringing consistent pressure against the pass from their D Line all year.  They are capable of hitting big plays, even if Penn State manages to slow down their offense. 

Maryland will also be super pumped up for this game. They cancelled class, and expanded the student section due to ticket demands. 

Penn State’s offense has been pretty shaky, it seems to hit a big play or bust.  Maryland’s defense is actually sneaky good. 

In short, I think Maryland matches up well, I think they will he pumped up big time, and Penn State is still a work in progress. 

I like Maryland by at least a TD. They may win by more than that. 

I hope I’m wrong!

Big Beef Tacosupreme

  • Player
  • ****
  • Default Avatar
  • Posts: 843
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2019, 12:30:42 PM »
Ugh. Remind me never to post from my phone again. That last post looks like a 5th trader wrote it. Haha

Cincydawg

  • Ombudsman for the Secret Order of the Odd Fellows
  • Global Moderator
  • Hall of Fame
  • *****
  • Default Avatar
  • Posts: 43606
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2019, 12:33:22 PM »
Ugh. Remind me never to post from my phone again. That last post looks like a 5th trader wrote it. Haha

Imagine it was written by the sixth trader.

betarhoalphadelta

  • Global Moderator
  • Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 8234
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #5 on: September 26, 2019, 12:57:30 PM »
I also think Maryland will beat Penn State.

IMO, Maryland has better skill position players than Michigan. Unfortunately, their offensive line isn’t great.  I don’t think that will matter too much, because Penn State has had trouble bringing consistent pressure against the pass from their D Line all year.  They are capable of hitting big plays, even if Penn State manages to slow down their offense.

Maryland will also be super pumped up for this game. They cancelled class, and expanded the student section due to ticket demands.

Penn State’s offense has been pretty shaky, it seems to hit a big play or bust.  Maryland’s defense is actually sneaky good.

In short, I think Maryland matches up well, I think they will he pumped up big time, and Penn State is still a work in progress.

I like Maryland by at least a TD. They may win by more than that.

I hope I’m wrong!
Damn... From what you're describing, PSU sounds like a much better matchup than I thought next weekend for Purdue. Shaky secondary, difficulty getting pressure, inconsistent offense? That's sort of the ideal team for Purdue to face. 

Hoping PSU crushes Maryland, lulling them to sleep against "lowly" Purdue and they get caught looking ahead to the Iowa matchup the following week.

mcwterps1

  • All Star
  • ******
  • Posts: 3152
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #6 on: September 26, 2019, 02:11:21 PM »
Pretty sure the road map is out to beating Maryland. 

Good front 7, and put your hands up to knock down the pass. 

ELA

  • Global Moderator
  • Hall of Fame
  • *****
  • Posts: 13668
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #7 on: September 27, 2019, 09:19:47 AM »
Afternoon games in

medinabuckeye1

  • All Star
  • ******
  • Default Avatar
  • Posts: 4643
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #8 on: September 27, 2019, 11:13:34 AM »
This week's B1G games based on our most recent Power Rankings:


  • #1 Ohio State at #8 Nebraska
  • #2 Wisconsin vs #10 Northwestern
  • #3 Penn State at #7 Maryland
  • #5 Michigan State vs #12 Indiana
  • #6 Michigan vs #14 Rutgers
  • #9 Minnesota at #11 Purdue

#4 Iowa has an OOC game with MTSU while #13 Illinois is off.  

Based on rankings and HFA the best game should be MN/PU.  We have the Gophers as a slightly better team but they are on the road.  The better team is also on the road in tOSU/UNL and PSU/UMD.  The other three games look pretty safe for the better/home team.  


ELA

  • Global Moderator
  • Hall of Fame
  • *****
  • Posts: 13668
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #9 on: September 27, 2019, 01:09:31 PM »
All picks in

MrNubbz

  • Legend
  • ****
  • Default Avatar
  • Posts: 9783
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #10 on: September 27, 2019, 02:56:40 PM »
Good points ELA on Gophs/Boilers last season - that's why they play the games
“Did I hear God call me an idiot? ”― William P. Young

betarhoalphadelta

  • Global Moderator
  • Legend
  • *****
  • Posts: 8234
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #11 on: September 28, 2019, 09:27:29 AM »
Good points ELA on Gophs/Boilers last season - that's why they play the games
I don't know if it had an affect on anything, but the week of last year's Purdue @ Minnesota game there were major rumors flying that Brohm was already committed to going to Louisville after the Indiana game. It might not have affected the outcome, but it wouldn't surprise me if it led to the players and the coaching staff being a bit mentally less than 100%.

GopherRock

  • Starter
  • *****
  • Posts: 1129
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #12 on: September 28, 2019, 09:40:06 AM »
PJ had also just cashiered his defensive coordinator after getting 50+ hung on them in roadies at Illinois and Nebraska. Everyone in the building was stunned at how fast the defense turned things around.

Turns out the DC that got sacked was the same guy who got Fat Bret fired from Arkansas. 

Hawkinole

  • Starter
  • *****
  • Posts: 1422
  • Liked:
Re: ELA September 28 Breakdown
« Reply #13 on: September 29, 2019, 02:21:24 PM »
ELA, you do a lot of work on this board, and I appreciate it. I hope its a labor of love. You muffed one. Correctly predicting 6 of 7, is not too shabby.

 

Support the Site!
Purchase of every item listed here DIRECTLY supports the site.