Embed from Getty Images Fans and media had their doubts. Doubts about would Jim Harbaugh a hands on quarterbacks coach, hands on the offensive coach would really give up control. Shortly after being named Michigan Wolverines offensive coordinator, Josh Gattis hit the recruiting road with his new boss.
Entering his fifth season as Wolverines head coach, Jim Harbaugh made his most intriguing and bold move to date. Not only bringing in a new offensive coaching mind. But giving him absolute control. In a recent media, meet and greet Gattis said “Jim has been so open, he has given me the freedom to run the offense, he has given me input to help me.”
With three spring practices complete, players are still learning the new playbook. It is clear that changes have been made. Gattis and the Wolverines offensive coaching staff have stripped all of the old away and are starting from square one. “We are not patting ourselves on the back, we’re not ready yet.” This is the design of spring practice.
“We will find ways to get playmakers the ball,” Gattis said, “We will be a tempo, no-huddle team.” The new offensive play caller stopped short of saying his offense is a spread-style offense. It is not. At least not a true spread-style.
The big difference in Josh Gattis’s offense and a spread-style is while both offensive styles attack defenses. Gattis and the system he runs is much more physical. Also the days of the dink and dunk are gone. Michigan will now attack defenses. They will take more shots downfield.
“We want to dictate what the defenses do. How do we do that? Control the line of scrimmage, get the ball to players who can get in space and make plays.” Gattis is offering a new philosophy, at least at Michigan.
Josh, was blunt as he told the fans and media “We need more depth at wide receiver, we are good at tight end.” Until There is depth at receiver, expect Michigan running backs to catch passes out of the backfield.
Embed from Getty Images After yet another disappointing end to the season, change came to Ann Arbor. Jim Harbaugh said he did not think any changes would be made. He then changed his mind and brought in Alabama and former Penn State coordinator Josh Gattis to run his offense.
By now you know the drum Josh Gattis has been beating “speed in space.” Gone is Tim Drevno and Pep Hamilton. Harbaugh purged his offensive staff. He also insists Gattis will have full control of the offense. That allows Harbaugh to manage the game.
The Michigan Wolverines football team is set to open spring practice this coming Sunday. The new offense is the focal point. Part mystery, while also being the single most fascinating group puts the unit under fan and media microscope.
The biggest issue for Michigan the past two years has been offensive consistency. At times the Wolverines looked dynamic at times often in the same game, they fell apart. So new coaches were brought in. In part for a new voice, in part a new direction.
Michigan has the pieces and parts to be a solid offensive driven team. Ed Warinner has brought the Wolverines running game into the modern college football landscape.
Josh Gattis said that it is his job to get players to “be explosive, while working around a well coaches running game.” A breath of fresh air for the Michigan faithful to hear.
For the first time at Michigan under any head coach. The Wolverines will bring and lineup in multiple formations. Keeping defense honest and on their heels.
Josh Gattis has yet to speak at great length to the media. He has appeared on Harbaughs weekly pod-cast. Jim Harbaugh wants his new coordinator completely focused of improving an offense that is sure to improve under the coach that Nick Saban was upset to lose.
With spring football starting in days. All eyes will be on the new offense. While it goes without saying Michigan will not show off all of their new formations, they will give a look into what is to come. Sort of to wet the appetite.
Embed from Getty Images Defense is not an issue for the 7th ranked Michigan basketball team. For two seasons Michigan’s defense has been at or near the top in the country. That is the good news. The bad news is the Wolverines offense lacks consistency.
All teams go through ups and downs of a season. The phrase used nowadays is “trust the process.” Okay. That is well and all if you have the players who can move the team forward. Sunday afternoon Michigan’s flaws were seen firsthand.
The Michigan State Spartans did not do anything different on defense. They did dare the Wolverines to hit outside shots as well as three point shots. Michigan State even gave Michigan players a good look at the hoop. One problem. Michigan could not take advantage.
Michigan has lived off of the defense. The offense has been trending down for most of the season. John Beilein has had no answers for his team. The players themselves have had no answers. It has been that way in all of the Wolverines losses this season.
One of the issues is that Michigan is better in the offensive zone when players are running and creating. Not having to stop set up and wait for someone to get open. Shooting 34.4% from three- point range as well as 51.5% from two-point range is down from one season ago.
This is not where Michigan wants to be with three regular season games left and the Big Ten Tournament coming. People will argue defense wins championships. That is certainly a valid point. Defense is critical in every sport.
However, teams need to make shots. All the defense and no offense leads to games like Michigan State. Michigan will have a shot at redemption March 9 when they travel to East Lansing to face the Spartans. It will not be easy. There will be a lot on the line for both schools.
This will be a show me game for the Wolverines. Michigan coach John Beilein says “we have habits we need to break.” He is absolutely correct. If Michigan can not grow and learn from Sunday’s home loss to their in-state rival their season will be met with disappointment.