For those reading on e-mail: click 'view in browser' to see the full contents of today's post
10 Takeaways: Week 13
1. The margins are what kills you
The biggest difference between Ohio State and Michigan when they play each other right now is that one team knows they can win and plays to it, while the other team hopes they can win, and plays not to lose.
The 118th edition of The Game was as much of a toss-up as any in recent memory, and the Wolverines simply made plays when they had to. An early Kyle McCord interception led to a short-field touchdown for Michigan, and even though Ohio State tied it at 17 in the third quarter and had a chance to win it on a last-minute drive, it always felt like it was too much for them to play from behind.
My greatest compliment to Michigan is how unfazed they are by the moment, and how willing they are to play free and loose in a rivalry they now have an iron-clad grip on. Whether it was bringing in their backup quarterback for a wildcat play that went for 20 yards, or calling for a double-pass at the start of the fourth quarter for their longest gain of the day, they're clearly not afraid to let it rip. This game obviously came down to more than just that, but their willingness to take chances and playing without fear was the difference to me.
I'm disgusted, and I'll have some deeper thoughts on how I feel about it later this week.
2. It's never over in the Iron Bowl
"These fuckers [Alabama] always find a way. They're never dead in the Iron Bowl, and I won't celebrate until there's four zeroes on the clock." - Me to my girlfriend, seconds before Alabama converted a 4th and goal from the 31 to win the Iron Bowl.
3. A quick head coaching news rundown
A lot's happened in the coaching world this weekend, so here's a quick rundown to catch you up:
- Texas A&M hired Duke's Mike Elko
- Michigan State hired Oregon State's Jonathan Smith
- Mississippi State hired Oklahoma Offensive Coordinator Jeff Lebby
- Houston fired Dana Holgorsen
- Indiana fired Tom Allen
- Louisiana-Monroe fired Terry Bowden
- UTEP fired Dana Dimel
- New Mexico fired Danny Gonzales
- Middle Tennessee State fired long-time coach Rick Stockstill
We're far from finished on this front, too. Buckle up!
4. RIP, Pac-12
It never had to be like this, but here we are: