The continuing reminder of the University of Wisconsin's 38-13 defeat in Michigan was an offensive inability – a low point for a unit that came into the season with the expectation of being one of the Badgers' best in school history.
In fact, a handful of games in the passing game may have changed the course of their performance. While a meaningless touchdown drive boosted the number slightly, UW actually cut more yards per game on Saturday (5.78) than in last year's win over Michigan, and even last season's Orange Bowl win as an offensive offensive Promised to be 201
It may not have felt like the clock came to zero, but the Badgers ran the ball quite effectively throughout the night. They had an average of 6.3 yards per carry, a number that climbs to 7.5 without the two sacks and Alex Hornibrook's fumbled snatch.
UW's offensive line did not dominate in the same way as against Nebraska – something that just would not go against this Michigan front, despite the involvement of Rashan Gary – but Jonathan Taylor had room to make his way for a series of acceptable profits.
That's why the Badgers found themselves in a third-and-three or shorter on six of their 11 drives Saturday – a point where this offense usually goes down well. UW has converted only two of these six and has finished the night 0 for 9 at the third depths that needed more than 1 yard to win. Hornibrook dropped back to drop nine times from 11 on the third, despite the short run length in many cases, and the only one who led to a first-down completion came during that final touchdown ride.
The Passing Game Just Not The job was done, and their inefficiency destroyed possessions that began with encouraging gains on the floor.
You can not put all the blame on a single person or group of positions. It starts with Hornibrook, who played one of the worst games of his career. He completed 7-of-20 passes for 100 yards with two interceptions and a touchdown to A.J. Taylor in the Final Minutes
There have been a few instances where the offensive line gave him plenty of time to pitch the intended target has created some room and Hornibrook just missed the mark.
Hornibrook's interception, which jumped to 10 Michigan points, was mental error.
On the first, it seems that he first read man guards when the Wolverines were really in the Guard 2. If they were in the man, Pryor would have pulled the outside corner further up the field and opened up a lot of room for AJ Taylor to get that pass. Instead, he led Taylor directly into the defender.
"I should have seen it," said Hornibrook. "They only played cover 2, so I should not have thrown it, I knew it when I got it out of my hands, it was just a stupid decision."
Michael Hombrook takes off on Hornibrook's Pick-6 back from the left to sell UW's game action, and it looks like Tyler Biadasz is just slipping past Michigan's last pre-snap move while Chase Winovich ricocheted off this flank at the last minute.
That caused a fairly immediate pressure on Hornibrook, and he could not have noticed that Lavert drove Hill into this room when he hit. A repeat of the TV broadcast showed that the increase in the pass could have been a bit more of a big win for Luke Benzschawel.
That does not excuse the mistake. It's a costly mistake that ended any hope of a UW comeback.
While it makes sense to keep frustration with the quarterback game on Saturday, the Jack Coan supporters will not yet be confirmed. Hornibrook played efficiently through the first five games of the season, and it could be short-sighted to assume that Coan would have done better on the road against one of the nation's highest defenses.
The search for Redshirt Coan also complicates matters when UW actually felt a change could benefit the offense. Hornibrook will have a chance to fight back, and history tells us he'll do it.
As I mentioned earlier, mistakes in the passing game should not completely fall on Hornibrook. He did not always get the protection he needed, and many of these problems came down to communication between UW's offensive lineages.
These misunderstandings were not solely due to the confusion over the snap that Michigan often tries to create. Take this third-down bag for example in the following video. There's nothing special about this Wolverines Lightning, but the Badgers release a linebacker when they do not need it.
The Badgers will likely have no better defense this season, but many of their problems were doing their own. There is reason to be encouraged by what we've seen since the opening game, but the passing game needs to be more consistent for UW to get a real chance at Penn State and the Big Ten title game.
– Andrew Van Ginkel looked much healthier on Saturday. For Pro Pro Football Focus, he played 52 snapshots compared to the 33 he saw last week against Nebraska.
He and UW's other outside linebackers, however, were also prone to mental errors. They were often made to rush against the line of attack during games of chance, allowing the quarterback to sneak up on the edge for big wins. In particular, the first two videos were crucial games in the game.
Michigan had not shown much reading option before this game. The Badgers seemed completely unprepared for it and did not adapt well after Patterson had assumed his initial reading ability of 81 yards to start the second quarter.
– UW's shorthanded secondary played frighteningly well Saturday, and I do not think badger fans had to watch the game a second time to get excited about Reggie Pearson's future.
See where the true freshman is at the time of the handoff – about 11 yards from the line of attack – and yet he still flies (19659003) Of course he also made another spectacular play to fumble at the attack line on Third -and-1 during the first drive of the Wolverines to force second half – a great moment until the snapper penalty was dragged out.
Pearson has taken a few bad sides in this game and was not tested too often in the coverage. However, he made the first impression and could certainly start in the next season as a replacement for D & # 39; Cota Dixon in the starting eleven. As a side note, I did not initially realize that Caesar Williams was playing on Saturday until I noticed cornerback in the fourth quarter when you watch the game again.
I am very curious to see what this cornerback rotation looks like when everyone is healthy.