Know Your Iowa Football Foe: Michigan Wolverines

Before every Iowa football match, HawkeyeInsider will ask five questions to the opposition beat reporter. The week before, we talked to Michigan beat reporter Alejandro Zuniga of to discuss the Hawkeyes game of week five in the match against Michigan Wolverines.Here we take a look.
1. What have JJ McCarthy demonstrated during his first few games as a starter?

What is the element he brings in Michigan’s offensive? Which are his primary potential targets? What are his weak points?

J.J. McCarthy was near-flawless during his first two games in games against Hawaii and UConn but he struggled a bit in his decision-making process and accuracy Maryland. The line he played against the Terps was not bad at all 18-for-26 with 220 yards with two scoreshowever, he scored only 1 of 8 passes that were at least 20 yards or more downfield according to PFF. In addition the fact that he was unsteady under pressure, which was highlighted by a play stretched until he ate the 15-yard sack. He also lost two times but the Wolverines made both of them recoverable.

McCarthy has been “living dangerously” against the Terps, yet “played winning football,” Jim Harbaugh said this week as did the Michigan coach believes that the errors in the throws can be corrected.

McCarthy is a former five-star prospect and has the physical attributes. He’s a runner but Michigan might be more conservative when it comes to him, given the injury sustained by the backup Cade McNamara. He also has a great arm that can make every catch in the game. His top targets to date include the receivers Roman Wilson and Ronnie Bell however, Luke Schoonmaker led the team with seven catch against Maryland.

Wilson is a fast runner who is able to stretch defenses horizontally, and is also a factor on the screens game. Bell is looking fantastic following an ACL injury that ended Bell’s 2021 career. Also, Schoonmaker is likely to continue to play a role because of his potential as a blocker, and also with the lingering question marks regarding Erick All’s health.

2. The run game of Michigan has been a strong point. What do Blake Corum bring to the table , and why is he crucial?

Iowa fans had an insight into the things Blake Corum does best in the 2021 Big Ten Championship Game. When he scored a touchdown of 67 yards that he burst into the gap, then jumped an opponent’s defensive back, and then speeded through the sidelines, scoring. This highlighted his top qualities of speed and speed that is unstoppable, the ability to make gaps with confidence , and then challenge what the defense is showing him.

In the game against the Terps this weekend, Corum also demonstrated his ability as a reliable workhorse with 30 carry with 243 yards, 2 TDs and the ability to move the field to gain little yardage. He also has the ability to leak from the backfield when on wheel routes, and also to check downs.

Corum is among the most talented players in the Big Ten, and he’s supported with Donovan Edwards, who may be back from an injury that’s not known this weekend. Edwards is a sophomore who is a star in his own way However, he excels as a pass catcher. Michigan is even able to split him to the wide side and will attack the wrong match if he’s being covered by linebackers.

J.J. McCarthy and the QB contest with Cade McNamara garnered the most attention in the offseason. However, Michigan remains a run-first team that relies strongly on their line. The line led Michigan to victory over the Terps and the Wolverines are looking to get their running game going against Iowa.

3. What’s the situation with Michigan’s defense? Who are the primary players and players?

Who will Michigan have to replace the specialists in pass-rush Aidan Hutchinson and David Ojabo?

The Michigan defense started the season with a lot of questions after the departures of Aidan Hutchinson, David Ojabo and Daxton Hill, who were all top-50 selections. Maryland was the toughest test the team has had to face all seasonlong, and the Wolverines did well — however, with mixed results.

The most encouraging aspect was the secondary. Mike Sainristil has looked excellent after moving between nickel and wide receiver during the offseason. The safety players — a trio consisting of Makari Paige Rod Moore and RJ Moten — have looked good, as are cornerbacks DJ Turner and Gemon Green. Teams have tried Sainristil and Green in the field, and generally speaking been able to meet the challenges.

The first seven players are the biggest issue. The linebackers — which are led by Mazi Smith, who is the number. number 1 “freak” in college football as per The Athletic The tackles are strong particularly when it comes to running. However, Michigan has been unable to get to the quarterback which was the case against Maryland. One player to keep an eye on to keep an eye on is EDGE Eyabi Okie who was a former five-star prospect who came to the team as a graduate transfer in the middle of August. He’s a speed-rusher on the edge who is likely to gain more snaps throughout the season, and he’s likely to play a significant role against Iowa on the obvious passing downs.

In the linebacker position, MIKE Junior Colson is a former top 100 prospect who recorded 13 career-high tackles in the game against Maryland. Michael Barrett grades out well on the field, however he is a little under-sized for his position. Nikhai Hill-Green is a probable player to play along with Colson but hasn’t been able to play since the start of this year due to an unknown soft-tissue issue and this has meant more of a role Kalel Mullings who is who is a LB who was also working in the running back position during offseason.

The defense is supervised by the coordinator in his first year Jesse Minter, a former Baltimore Ravens coach, who continues Mike Macdonald’s plan and plan to create pressure using exotic equipment particularly when it comes to third down.

4. What did Maryland did to give Michigan the most difficult time in both the defensive and offensive ball?

Michigan did not put much pressure on Taulia Tagovailoa’s back four. This allowed the Maryland QB ample time to be inside the pocket to choose his most effective option from the Terps with their wide range of receivers. In my opinion, the secondary performed admirably and there were no big flops. (On Tagovailoa’s sole pass touchdown of the game, a mesh idea resulted in that DB Gemon Green fall when he hit his colleague.) Additionally, they struggled with the pass rush the front seven missed a few tackles in the Maryland running backs The bigger back (Antwain Littleton) being the most successful in this in that regard.

The offensive problems were largely self-inflicted. J.J. McCarthy missed several deep shots while his receiver was stepping over his opponent. It was not normal We’ve witnessed McCarthy hit high-quality balls without hesitation throughout this season, as well as during his numerous appearances last season. The Wolverines also missed an early scoring opportunity after rookie RB CJ Stokes made a mistake, and the team’s failed strategy stalled another play from midfield.

The Terps were able to slow Michigan with their eight-point drop points and forced McCarthy to read. McCarthy certainly has the ability to perform this however, he often appeared to be an unproven quarterback making the first Big Ten start. It’s important to note that Michigan tried only one screen pass, as per PFF, and it appeared like an unproductive opportunity considering Michigan’s speed on the outside.

5. What are the key factors to Iowa to defeat Michigan and what’s your bet for the match?

Do not turn the ball over. Avoid drive-extending penalties on defense. Hit your open receivers downfield. Easy to do than the Hawkeyes you think?

Jim Harbaugh believes this will be a grind-it-out type of match, and I’m with him — particularly with a quarterback who is just starting his first appearance on the road. However, I think the Wolverines have sufficient talent in the offensive department, and also an elite special teams team that could go head-to-head with Iowa’s team to counter the advantage that is usually to the Hawkeyes.

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