Up until this point he could do no wrong.[singlepic id=2293 w=320 h=240 float=]
He dismissed the initial doubts of many by luring Greg Mattison to be his defensive coordinator.
He talked and acted like Michigan coach should.
He spoke of coaches taking responsibility, of his team needing to out-tough opponents.
And the dominoes fell; Western, Notre Dame, Eastern, San Diego State, Minnesota, and Northwestern.
Last second comeback under the lights at the Big House? Check.
Second half comeback on the road at Northwestern? Easy.
Victory over the hated Spartans in East Lansing? Not so quick.
The Wolverines were literally and figuratively punched in the mouth by the Spartans.
MSU completely and thoroughly dominated the line of scrimmage, pummeling their Wolverine counterparts play after play.
The Spartans were dirty and dominating.
But amazingly late in the 4th quarter, trailing 21-14, the Wolverines had 4 and 1 deep in Spartan territory, with a golden opportunity to possibly tie the game.
The ball was snapped and Denard, with the way seemingly clear to fall forward for a first down pulled back with the intent to throw a pass only to be dumped for a huge loss and turn the ball over on downs to the Spartans. The game was was sealed a few minutes later when Denard threw pick 6, igniting a massive a celebration in Spartan Stadium and thankfully no couches.
The crushing defeat by the Spartans have some wondering if we’re in the midst of another second half swoon that marked the last two seasons under RichRod.
Denard’s poor passing over the last several games have many questioning his status as starting quarterback.
The immediate success of Jim Harbaugh in the NFL have some questioning whether AD David Brandon made the wrong choice in hiring Hoke.
Hoke will need to rally his team and prepare them for what promises to be a difficult stretch that has the potential for disaster written all over it. After a home game at Big House versus Purdue the Wolverines visit Iowa and Illinois, each holding bitter memories of disappointment in recent seasons followed by Nebraska and rival Ohio State both at the Big House.
Ladies and gentlemen, please return to your seats and fasten your seat belts, this is going to be a wild ride.
Soon after arriving in Ann Arbor, Hoke had countdown clocks installed to mark the MSU and OSU games.
We saw the results of the first countdown last Saturday.
What happens between now and when the next countdown clock winds down will tell us what Brady Hoke is made of.