...talks about how UConn hasn't been in contact and how they're out. (HT: UMHoops)
Two high school all-star games were played over the weekend that featured Michigan recruits. As you can see at right, Terrance Taylor scared just about everyone in an intra-Michigan game in which he scored two touchdowns on fumble recoveries.
mgoblog has said this before, but I should reiterate: he is the most underrated player coming into this class (er, except for TE Carson Butler), even though he was a top 100 guy. I love the fact that he's under 6 feet tall but still has the strength and size to play DT. Getting under his pads will be very difficult for anyone who's big enough to not crumple like the fender of Bob Huggins' car after a few too many under his onslaught. I previously speculated that Taylor would be a 3-technique tackle but after seeing some pictures of him and reading about the way he was used in the all star game, I think he's probably Gabe Watson's heir apparent. Michigan will line him up Jerry Ball-style and imply that yummy num-nums can be found in that ball the skinny white kid keeps throwing around. Chaos will ensue.
The other news item out of the Michigan game was a brief newspaper article from the Jackson Citizen Patriot with this:
"If they were playing Ohio State this week, he'd be dressed," Jackson coach Jack Fairly said. "Coach (Lloyd) Carr told me they want him playing as a freshman, so they don't want him to get injured in the All-Star game."
Interesting, especially given that Taylor was greenlighted to play. Michigan does have at least four defensive tackles who are either proven seniors (Watson, Massey) or buzz-generating underclassmen (Branch, Will Johnson), so some freakish injury to Taylor probably wouldn't affect the season much. Also, since Bass was slated to start at quarterback and run a ton, there was a much greater chance that he would take some hits. Taylor spent the game dispensing them, not receiving them.
But the depth at defensive tackle appears to be mirrored by the depth at wide reciever: Michigan has Breaston, Avant, Arrington, Dutch, and Tabb. Both Arrington and Dutch were top-100 wide receivers and Tabb is fast, I'd be happy with those five no problem. Neither Mario Manningham (more on him later) nor Antonio Bass will redshirt. Only time will tell whether that means that the freshmen are just impossible to keep off the field or if the guys 3-5 have been somewhat disappointing. Given everything surrounding Mario I am leaning to the former.
About that racoon-suited receiver: in the annual Big 33 game between Ohio and Pennsylvania, Manningham took a slant pass from future Buckeye Rob Schoenhoft to the hizzle de dizzle heeeouse fo shizzle [/Stuart Scott] from 74 yards out, Mister Simpson got 11 yards on 5 carries, and Zoltan Mesko was... eh, not so consistent. Reports said that his kickoffs got to about the two yard line but were line-drives. He made 4 extra-points but missed one. There's no chance of Epstein-like double duty at punter and kicker for Mesko, which is fine by me given how it seemingly screwed Epstein up. Ohio won 34-28. Reports claim Manningham was the star of the Ohio practices leading up to the game, torching everyone on a variety of routes, from screens to outs to gos. He's good. Like booyah good, Stu. Booyah good.
Rammer Jammer... er... um...
There they are folks, your ideals: Crossword editor Will Shortz is the Timesman you love for his brain, and Styles reporter Warren St. John is the Timesman you love for his body.
mgoblog will admit that when I saw St. John's picture on his website I had two immediate reactions:
- This guy is from Alabama?
- This guy IS A WRITER!?
There's something there, folks. Something as hot and steamy as the Vandy game from RJYH. (For more on RJYH, check the review/demand that you buy the book here.)
How did I post on this before the ever-puerile EDSBS? I dunno. But in your face, Orson!
So that NHL thing is on the way back. Friday they held their draft lottery. Edmonton got the 25th pick, I am distressed. (For strange reasons only partially known to myself, I switched team allegiances from Detroit to Edmonton right when people like Chris Chelios were ending up Red Wings and Mike Comrie was doing inexplicable things with the Oilers.) Jack "Gojira" Johnson will be a Mighty Duck, Hurricane, or singular version of the word "Wild," as Anaheim, Carolina, and Minnesota picked up the 2, 3, and 4 picks, respectively.
"Godzilla Hockey." I love you, Google.
4. Jack Johnson, D
56. Jason Bailey, F
63. Andrew Cogliano, F
78. T.J. Hensick, F
99. Zach MacVoy, F
140. Tim Miller, F
27. Steve Jakiel
I'm not sure why I continue bothering to report these, since they're just... just wrong. Remember that the CSB releases separate rankings for European and North American players, so the apparent third-round rankings of Hensick and Cogliano are closer to 5th or 6th round projections. Which is wrong. Cogliano will probably be a late first rounder. Hensick is harder to project, but I would think he goes somewhere in the second, though he could go anywhere from the late first to the third. The CSB consistently ranks any guy 6'2" or above who can put on skates in two or three tries higher than any rational human would. Witness Jason Bailey at 56, above Hensick and Cogliano. Now, don't get me wrong: I like Bailey a lot and am very happy he's going to be a Wolverine. But his NHL future appears to be a third-line grinder at best. Both Cogliano and his Bure-like speed and Hensick and his dirty dirty stickhandling should be well gone by the time a mucker like Bailey goes.
Hockey's Future has a mock draft with Gojira at #4, Cogliano at #24, and Hensick at #28, which is a much more realistic picture of the situation. Personally, I would be surprised to see Hensick in the first round, but I will flip out and verbally assault key members of the Oilers front office if Hensick is on the board in the third and they pass on him (see: Zach Parise).
TBT Yost Built has more on the NHL draft and the newly-approved rules changes (mgoblog's opinion is here if you care). I'd like the NCAA to immediately adopt the no-line-change-after-icing rule. It is teh sweet.
Also, the Cold War (3-3 tie between MSU and UM played at Spartan Stadium) is being replayed by Fox Sports Detroit on Saturday at 7 PM. On Monday they're playing two Michigan-Michigan State games back to back at 5 and 7:30. The first is the loss to MSU in this year's GLI. The second is one from a bit back where Michigan beat Ryan Miller and went on to the Frozen Four in St. Paul, where they lost to Minnesota.
Oh, yeah: TAMBINPO has chimed in on the Roundtables in better-late-than-never fashion. The goal is to spread Nowledge (sorry, Joe) throughout the blogosphere, and he's the only Texas (state of, that is) guy who's responded so far so his perspective is worth examining.
No permalinks, though. Run, lest it disappear.