[Post Game] Spring Game Reactions

Gophergrandpa

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My concern with the WRs wasn't speed, it was butter fingers. In the second half, it seemed that they had a hard time catching balls that hit them in the hands or the numbers.
I don't want to start up 2019's discussion about TEs(!), but I think Sanford's offense will include meaningful throws to TEs and to RBs swinging out of the backfield. There won't be as much pressure on the WRs to carry the full load. This might actually line up better with where our talent "distribution" is for the coming year or two. DBs might have to be a little more thoughtful in coverage if TEs and RBs are suddenly in play as receivers, possibly giving our WR a few more opportunities. Time will tell ...
 

MGGopher

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I just got done watching the whole game and yeah I agree with what a lot of people said. The team did not look good.

QBs still locked onto guys way too much. Both had guys open or check down, but instead looked for one guy usually deep and didn’t even turn their heads for other options or check downs. Morgan will struggle like last year if not worse now that he doesn’t have NFL WRs around him. Morgan is too locked onto CAB and threw many risky balls. Annexstad had some awful throws too, especially at the end of the game.

WRs were almost never open and looked slow as molasses. Can we stop calling ourselves WR U? Drops were a problem too. I’m starting to think PJ got lucky with Johnson and Bateman. Maybe CAB too, but that is it for good WRs other than maybe the freshman that showed some promise as people mentioned. Needs to get some muscle as he looks small. Might not get to redshirt him though.

Running game struggled. After Mo were are not going to have a good running game at all. This is also supposed to be an o line I keep hearing buzz about with experience and seniors, but was not impressed. Worried again after these guys we will be very bad for years.

I know they said multiple times the d was limited, but still played way too far off of guys. With that being said, there should have been some more short passes or the WRs should have gotten more separation, but that didn’t happen. Defense was also slow and gave up too much in the first half. Tighter in the second half, but you can’t be giving up stuff like that to start games.

As others have said special teams is joke. Very close to missing all the field goal tries and the one kicker kicks too many line drives. Once the transfers arrive cut these guys please.

I watched honestly hoping for some excitement and promise, but it feels like since the 2019 players are getting less and less (soon to be none), the fuel tank in this car is getting more and more towards empty without a gas station for miles.
Wow, I'm actively tempering my expectations this year, but you're straight up at the ledge with one foot dangling over, lol. This is easily a 7 or 8 win team -- but I think the staff believes they're much better than that. The OL and running game will overwhelm inferior opponents. A very experienced QB won't make too many mistakes...and even with an underwhelming WR corps (IMO), the passing game should be adequate to keep the team in most games. The defense will be MUCH better than last year. The DL (particularly the interior) is truly stacked with talent. The LBs have two new (and useful) bodies to plug in this year in Gibbens and Oliver, and Lindenberg seriously looked studly yesterday. I'm very hyped for his progression and believe he'll be an all-B1G player in the next couple years. Two transfer kickers should stabilize that part of the game (which was embarrassing last year).

So yeah, I'm trying to look for negatives and be more "down" than I usually am coming into a season, but there's a lot to like on this team.
 

Stuff

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Thought the running game struggled for the most part. Was it because a) Mo wasn't playing, b) didn't have the 1st team o-line all together, c) our defense front 7 has really improved, d) all of the above.
I noticed the front 4 of the defense got a lot more pressure on the QB than in previous years. I was wondering the same as you, is it an improved Dline or struggling Oline?
 

SixBySix

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I just got done watching the whole game and yeah I agree with what a lot of people said. The team did not look good.
I mean, even those two statements are somewhat contradictory--I would say this thread is overwhelmingly positive compared to previous year's spring discourse.
 

LesBolstad

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I’m curious...if we jump the Ohio State Buckeyes in the opener, will we go undefeated and be among the Final Four teams in the playoffs?

I like the way you think me boy! I'm upgrading our record to 10-2 after the Spring Game.
 

60's Guy

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I noticed the front 4 of the defense got a lot more pressure on the QB than in previous years. I was wondering the same as you, is it an improved Dline or struggling Oline?
I am very confident our O-Line will be a strength. Not confident in our RB’s after Mo. Will Thomas ever dress? If he does will he sparkle? Somebody else has to emerge or Zack needs to run some to keep em honest. 😏
And D-line is better. They could only blitz four times (all day, I think) by game rule. Transfers help.
 

btowngopher

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I am very confident our O-Line will be a strength. Not confident in our RB’s after Mo. Will Thomas ever dress? If he does will he sparkle? Somebody else has to emerge or Zack needs to run some to keep em honest. 😏
And D-line is better. They could only blitz four times (all day, I think) by game rule. Transfers help.
So much hand wringing over the back up rbs. If the oline is good the rbs will be fine. Potts and Wiley combined for very good numbers last year, I believe both averaged over 6 ypc.
 

SanDiegoGopherFan

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PJ said there was restrictions on the defense so they weren't allowed to play all out. take that fwiw.

We'll be quite good this year on O.
 

60's Guy

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So much hand wringing over the back up rbs. If the oline is good the rbs will be fine. Potts and Wiley combined for very good numbers last year, I believe both averaged over 6 ypc.
Yes, on 19 and 29 attempts....not a huge sample size. Padded by a long run for each. I don’t believe they can consistently get first downs which is our philosophy.
That’s my worry.
 

PMWinSTP

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I don't want to start up 2019's discussion about TEs(!), but I think Sanford's offense will include meaningful throws to TEs and to RBs swinging out of the backfield. There won't be as much pressure on the WRs to carry the full load. This might actually line up better with where our talent "distribution" is for the coming year or two. DBs might have to be a little more thoughtful in coverage if TEs and RBs are suddenly in play as receivers, possibly giving our WR a few more opportunities. Time will tell ...
What makes you think this?
 

Spaulding!No!

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Wow, I'm actively tempering my expectations this year, but you're straight up at the ledge with one foot dangling over, lol. This is easily a 7 or 8 win team -- but I think the staff believes they're much better than that. The OL and running game will overwhelm inferior opponents. A very experienced QB won't make too many mistakes...and even with an underwhelming WR corps (IMO), the passing game should be adequate to keep the team in most games. The defense will be MUCH better than last year. The DL (particularly the interior) is truly stacked with talent. The LBs have two new (and useful) bodies to plug in this year in Gibbens and Oliver, and Lindenberg seriously looked studly yesterday. I'm very hyped for his progression and believe he'll be an all-B1G player in the next couple years. Two transfer kickers should stabilize that part of the game (which was embarrassing last year).

So yeah, I'm trying to look for negatives and be more "down" than I usually am coming into a season, but there's a lot to like on this team.
Nah, we have had experienced qbs and they have played like horse sht. So, yer wrong.
 

Pompous Elitist

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What makes you think this?

Attempts to TEs albeit still small overall were up from 2019 and I’d guess the Rashod Ratio is going away. CAB and the rest are a click down from the recently departed NFL guys and may struggle to find their footing and open grass for awhile. Stands to reason a matchup problem like an improved BSF or one of the others is a decent bet to get more throws their way.
 

Pompous Elitist

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I noticed the front 4 of the defense got a lot more pressure on the QB than in previous years. I was wondering the same as you, is it an improved Dline or struggling Oline?

A lot of backups out there. Maybe we should be surprised the QBs got so much time...ha. It would be really nice for a couple defensive linemen to emerge this year. It’s been a long, exhausting year and I’ll admit I have a bit of brain fog re: the recent season but I don’t remember our front four doing much in 2020. Somebody correct me if I’m way off base.
 

Gophergrandpa

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I noticed the front 4 of the defense got a lot more pressure on the QB than in previous years. I was wondering the same as you, is it an improved Dline or struggling Oline?
Pinckney knows how to shed a block. If he can teach a few others ...
 

Gophergrandpa

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What makes you think this?
From what Fleck has said about utilization, what the spring practice videos chose to show us, where our experienced talent lies, and “regression to the mean” of what most efficient offenses do when they don’t have two sure-fire NFL draft picks sitting at 1 and 2 WR ... but I can’t prove I’m right. Just a hunch.
 

short ornery norwegian

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On the RB's, I was encouraged to see several backs being able to recognize that they were running into the stacked side of the defense, and were able to cut back for solid gains. Potts had a couple of those and even Jelen had a nice cut-back run.

With Wiley, he looks more like a straight-line runner, but if he can get to the edge, he has a little burst.

To say "the other backs are not as good as Mo" is a little ridiculous on face value.

Mo Ibrahim was the back of the year in the conference last year. So, by definition, the other backs on the MN team are not on his level. and neither are the other backs on IA, WI, Neb........etc.

That doesn't mean they suck. It just means they aren't on the same level as the best RB in the conference. If Mo gets enough carries this year, he could easily go over 2,000 yards. If the Gophers have a good season as a team, Mo could get a lot of Heisman support. I mean, a Gopher RB wins the Heisman every 70 years, right? So it's time.
 

btowngopher

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On the RB's, I was encouraged to see several backs being able to recognize that they were running into the stacked side of the defense, and were able to cut back for solid gains. Potts had a couple of those and even Jelen had a nice cut-back run.

With Wiley, he looks more like a straight-line runner, but if he can get to the edge, he has a little burst.

To say "the other backs are not as good as Mo" is a little ridiculous on face value.

Mo Ibrahim was the back of the year in the conference last year. So, by definition, the other backs on the MN team are not on his level. and neither are the other backs on IA, WI, Neb........etc.

That doesn't mean they suck. It just means they aren't on the same level as the best RB in the conference. If Mo gets enough carries this year, he could easily go over 2,000 yards. If the Gophers have a good season as a team, Mo could get a lot of Heisman support. I mean, a Gopher RB wins the Heisman every 70 years, right? So it's time.
The rbs are WAY down my list of concerns.
 

GopherGuy8

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Out-of-the-gate this is not a political...vax or no vax...or whatever question. Just curious...

Here's the U's official policy on masks for the game:

"Masks: Fans are required to wear face coverings while inside University venues, unless they are eating or drinking in their assigned seat location. No exceptions will be provided to this policy."

Question: Were people complying...and even more interesting to me...was the U enforcing...the policy?

As I read this the only time one should not be masked was when eating/drinking. Otherwise masks were the rule of the day. I believe this "policy" is in line with the Governor's most current "guidelines," and not the U out on some kind of limb.

Not looking for a merit debate (although understood it probably can't be avoided). Could not tell from the BTN telecast what folks were doing in the stands.
From what I saw pretty much everyone wore a mask when they were on the concourse or moving around. When people were seated the large majority took their masks off, except when one of the workers with a wear your mask sign would walk by, then you had to put it on for a minute or two until they left.
 

go4rob

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Wow, I'm actively tempering my expectations this year, but you're straight up at the ledge with one foot dangling over, lol. This is easily a 7 or 8 win team -- but I think the staff believes they're much better than that. The OL and running game will overwhelm inferior opponents. A very experienced QB won't make too many mistakes...and even with an underwhelming WR corps (IMO), the passing game should be adequate to keep the team in most games. The defense will be MUCH better than last year. The DL (particularly the interior) is truly stacked with talent. The LBs have two new (and useful) bodies to plug in this year in Gibbens and Oliver, and Lindenberg seriously looked studly yesterday. I'm very hyped for his progression and believe he'll be an all-B1G player in the next couple years. Two transfer kickers should stabilize that part of the game (which was embarrassing last year).

So yeah, I'm trying to look for negatives and be more "down" than I usually am coming into a season, but there's a lot to like on this team.
Like every other "spring game" in history, it's really hard to tell anything when you're playing against yourself, especially when you're a casual observer as most of us are. I think there were certain restrictions placed on the D and also certain requirements placed on the O, such as trick plays. Overall, I though it was a clean game with very few penalties. It gave 2nd and 3rd stringers a great chance to show their talents. I think this is a MUCH deeper team than we've had in many a year, especially on offense. The defense should be much improved. The kicking game is still suspect, but that may change with the transfer coming in. They will need to bring their A-game against OSU but that goes without saying. If they can get through that game without any major injuries, and actually make a game of it, (be within 7 points going into the 2nd half) that could really bode well for their confidence going into the rest of the season. If they get blown out by 40 or more, then it could be a crap shoot. This was a far cry from Fleck's first spring game, where he could barely field an offensive line.
 

GopherFanatic19

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How did that 4/5 star transfer from Ta/m do in the spring game. Seems like he should be our best WR
 

BilldGopher

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Do any of the TEs on this team remind you of Maxx?
Nope, they don't. His skillset was very special and the coaches knew how to use it.

Post-Maxx has been pedestrian at best. Like many hoping to see TE's more engaged in the passing game...but not at the expense of the protection Tanner needs for having the time to hit the WR's.
 

Gophergrandpa

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How did that 4/5 star transfer from Ta/m do in the spring game. Seems like he should be our best WR
He didn't play in the game. Don't know if it was because he is nicked up or because of COVID tracing rules. Heard some of the guys who didn't play (Clark?) might have been for COVID tracing reasons. Anyway, to my knowledge, he sat the game out.
 

A_Slab_of_Bacon

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Do any of the TEs on this team remind you of Maxx?
Yeah that's always my question when it comes to throwing to TEs more ... you gotta have that guy to do it, and be willing to give up the pass protection. Those aren't easy things to be sure of.
 
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