Michigan football: 5 things I'd like see from the Wolverines after their bye week
After emotional wins over Wisconsin and Michigan State, the bye week comes at a great time for the Wolverines. It’s a time to heal and get ready for the home stretch, with goals of a Big Ten title still fresh and attainable .
Here are five things I want to see from Michigan as they come out of their bye week:
1. Rashan Gary gets healthy and back on the field
This may not happen next week, because he’s still rehabbing his injured shoulder, and a note from his mother a few days ago made it clear that Rashan Gary isn’t going to play until he feels better. There is the fear that he’s going to pull a Nick Bosa and pack it in for the year, but it doesn’t sound like his mom is proposing that, either. Hopefully another week of rest will get him closer to playing shape. The defense has still been great without him, but it would sure be nice to have him back in the mix, especially before Nov. 24. Isn’t the best dig possible is Gary playing against Ohio State while Bosa watches?
2. A fresh week of practice gets the passing game crisp
Michigan pounded Michigan State with a solid running game last Saturday, but the passing game wasn’t all that great. Part of it can be blamed on weather, but it’s late October now, so weather is probably going to be an issue every Saturday going forward. Quarterback Shea Patterson missed a handful of easy throws against the Spartans, so this would be a good week to tighten up some of that.
3. Diverse offense continues to expand
Patterson has changed everything when it comes to opening up the playbook, because he’s capable of beating defenses with both his arm and his feet. Even better, he thinks on the fly and can be very creative. The best thing about this team this season has been watching the offense grow, so hopefully a week off will add some fresh looks to the offensive attack. Keep moving forward.
4. Don Brown gets zeroed in on Penn State’s offense
Michigan has done a great job the past two weeks of crushing some demons. The Wolverines avenged last year’s loss to Wisconsin in a 38-13 win and ended Michigan State’s dominance over them last weekend in a 21-7 thrashing. Next up on the vindication list is Penn State after the bye week. The Nittany Lions picked apart Don Brown’s defense last year, rolling up 506 yards in the 42-13 pounding. When the players return to practice on Monday, you know Brown is going to have a great plan in place.
5. The police blotter stays empty
Every coach worries about this during a bye week when the players get to catch their breath and occasionally make bad decisions. The discipline level is high enough at Michigan right now — and the excitement level for what lies ahead is off the charts. Hopefully it will be a non-eventful weekend.