Brady Hoke, Year Two
In last September's Observer, I called the regular season at 7-5, rising to 8-5 with a win over a "meatball" bowl team. This was a complete analytical failure. I saw 2011 as 2008 redux (on offense)--believing that the transition to a new system, even if moderate, would take more than one fall.
Cook suggested I go into witness protection.
Disguises were off for the opener against Western, since it was hotter than hell and a minimum of clothing was required. By the end of the first quarter many of the U-M faithful were also psychologically hot: the score was tied 7-7 and Western was deep in Michigan territory. Were we doomed never to escape Rich Rod's implosion? By going outside of the Michigan Family, had Bill Martin relegated us to 100 years of being (gulp) Indiana?
But then Brandon Herron intercepted an Alex Carder pass and ran it back ninety-four yards for a TD, the longest runback of an interception in Michigan history. Never have I been a part of such a collective sigh of relief. Michigan won the game, easily. Still, there was unease about Michigan's prospects the following week.