ALL OR NOTHING

The theme of this episode of All or Nothing is missed opportunities.

From the very beginning, we understand that this will be an episode of disappointment.

Wilton Speight hoped to come back from his injury in time to play against Wisconsin, but that wasn’t to be.

The entire team has an opportunity to get back in the hunt by beating 10-0 Wisconsin.  It’s not an easy prospect, but most opportunities aren’t easy.

WISCONSIN

Down 14-10 in the second half, Michigan has an opportunity to drive down the field and take the lead.  Unfortunately, that opportunity eludes them, and Brandon Peters gets rocked by a vicious hit.  He is knocked out for a brief period and confused upon waking.

John O’Korn comes in and has an opportunity to become the leader of the team once again.  He also fails to capitalize and (after completing his first pass) throws five straight incompletions.

Brandon Peters fails his concussion protocol and will miss an opportunity to start against Ohio State in the final regular season game.

THANKSGIVING

Going into Ohio State week, John O’Korn has one more opportunity to prove himself.

Thanksgiving gives the team an opportunity to leave football for a day and be with friends and family.  Coach Harbaugh talks about the importance of talking to your parents and telling them that you love them.  When he does so, he’s speaking about opportunity—the opportunity of forging relationships with those that you love.

OHIO STATE

For the seniors, it’s their last opportunity to play Ohio State and their final opportunity to come away with a victory.

At first, it seems that Michigan will grab this opportunity as they go up 14-0 early.  With the offense playing well, the defense is close to crippling Ohio State.  J.T. Barrett goes back for a pass under heavy pressure and throws a bad pass right into the hands of a Michigan defender—who drops it.

They miss that opportunity to go up 21-0 and instead Ohio State scores to cut the lead to 14-7.

The game is tied at 14 at the half.  In the third quarter, Michigan goes up 20-14, and they seem to be in total control.  After a sack, J.T. Barrett goes out with a knee injury giving true freshman Dwayne Haskins an opportunity to play against Ohio State.  He plays well and leads Ohio State to a touchdown giving them a 21-20 lead.

With under three minutes left to play Michigan is down 24-20 and they have an opportunity to lead a winning drive against their rivals.

Instead, John O’Korn misses a wide open receiver and throws an interception.

MISSED OPPORTUNITY

Michigan missed all their opportunities going down the stretch, and the whole team feels it.

Football, like life, is all about making the most of what is available right in front of you.  Michigan didn’t do that and thus their season is a disappointment.

But can they end on a high note?  Come back tomorrow to find out.

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The Author

Mark Phillips

Mark Phillips

Mark Phillips is the author of several thriller and literary novels. His Bentley Books series introduced the world to sadistic serial killer Bentley Grimes, a villain of unbelievable cruelty and unimaginable coldness. His literary novels are populated with richly drawn characters struggling with issues that affect our society today, such as: homosexuality, alcoholism, family struggles, poverty, greed, and bigotry.

He is an avid sports fan as well as a lover of movies and television.

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