this week in unintentionally grim-sounding recruiting headlines
The B1G went a respectable 7-5 ATS last weekend; while Michigan did not obviously fare as well. Wisconsin is the only team left with a perfect record ATS.
|Michigan||-31.5||59-9 (CMU)||+18.5||-5||41-30 (ND)||+6||-37||28-24 (Akron)||-33|
|Ohio||-34||40-20 (Buff)||-14||-28||42-7 (SDSU)||+7||-13.5||52-34 (@Cal)||+4.5|
|Michigan St||-28||26-13 (WMU)||-15||-21.5||21-6 (USF)||-6.5||-23||55-17 (Young St)||+15|
|Indiana||-25||73-35 (Ind St)||+13||-12.5||35-41 (Navy)||-18.5||-2.5||42-10 (BGSU)||+29.5|
|Illinois||-17||42-34 (So Ill)||-9||+8||45-17 (Cinci)||+36||+10.5||24-34 (Wash)||+0.5|
|Northwestern||-6.5||44-30 (@Cal)||+7.5||-17||48-27 (Syr)||+4||-28||38-17 (WMU)||-7|
|Penn State||-8||23-17 (Syr)||-2||-28||45-7 (EMU)||+10||-4.5||31-34 (UCF)||-7.5|
|Nebraska||-31||37-34 (Wyo)||-28||-28||56-13 (S Miss)||+15||-1.5||21-41 (UCLA)||-21.5|
|Iowa||-3||27-30 (N Ill)||-6||-26||28-14 (Misso St)||-12||-1||27-21 (@Iowa St)||+5|
|Wisconsin||-44||45-0 (UMass)||+1||-45||48-0 (Tenn Tech)||+3||+7||30-32 (@AZ St)||+5|
|Purdue||+10.5||7-42 (Cinci)||-24.5||-17||20-14 (Ind St)||-11||+17||31-24 (ND)||+10|
|Minnesota||-13.5||51-23 (UNLV)||+14.5||-16||44-21 (N Mex St)||+7||-27.5||29-12 (W Ill)||-10.5|
Penn State is the big mover; the line has increased 7 points since the open. Indiana opened as the underdog, but the market has determined that game is a toss-up. We have our first B1G match-up with Purdue @ Wisconsin. Of course with a current spread 23.5 it doesn't really set off fireworks for the start of league play. Can Michigan recover and win by 3 TD's? They may be able to cover that O by themselves.
|Penn State||-14||-21||54||Kent St|
If MCalibur, or anyone else, has the missing O/U I'll update them as they come in.
The weekly six selects #6 from Akron over any Michigan folks this week
1. The Six Factors
|Field Pos||Early Conv||Bonus Yds||Avg 3rd Dist||Adj 3rd Conv||Red Zone|
|Offense||26.4 (48)||49% (42)||213 (31)||8.9 (95)||+6% (44)||2.3 (33)|
|Defense||32.7 (96)||50% (27)||172 (46)||4.0 (58)||-1% (21)||2.3 (16)|
Weekly numbers first, season national rank in ()
That certainly doesn’t look like a win. Mostly thanks to the pick-six, Akron’s field position would have given an average team a nearly touchdown win. Akron handily won the early downs, edging Michigan in early conversions and smoking us in third down distance. Michigan held an edge in adjusted third down performance. Michigan’s 213 bonus yards were a strong number, but coming into the game Akron was awful and the fact that they ended as close as they did to Michigan was a major black mark for the defense.
For the season Michigan finds itself without an elite metric on offense (now that the red zone streak was shattered) and only one bad one. Thanks to some rough early down rushes, Michigan’s typical third down has been nearly 9 yards.
On the defensive side there is more variance. Preventing early conversions, third downs and red zone have all been strong areas of success for the defense. Bonus yards and third down distance haven’t been as strong. They have also faced some challenging field position, almost in the triple digits in terms of their national rank.
(Click the Image to See Full Size Version)
I hope we win this week, like a real Meeshigan win.
THE BLOCKHAMS™ runs (typically) every week here at MGoBlog and on its official home page. Also, don't forget to check out the Friday Fun, my weekly single panel comic based on trending Michigan events, available on Twitter and the home page every Friday.
this week's miniprogram:
As most people here are well aware the University's President Mary Sue Coleman is in the last academic year of her tenure and has announced her intent to retire in July 2014. Back on August 22nd I wrote my first installment of this diary with some fun wild speculation about possible candidates. At this point everything is based on semi-educated guesses and the fact that, as the University officially launches its "Victors for Michigan" campaign towards the goal of raising $5 billion before the University's bicentenial in 2017, they may want someone with previous University ties to seemlessly step into the campaign. Here's the link to the old Diary http://mgoblog.com/diaries/race-replace-mary-sue-coleman-%E2%80%93-odds-university-michigan%E2%80%99s-next-president
So logically candidates like Theresa Sullivan (former M provost, current Chancellor at UVA), Marvin Krislov (former General Counsel during NCAA investigation and Affirmative Action Supreme Court case, now President at Oberlin College) and Nancy Cantor (former Provost at Michigan and current President at Syracuse who is leaving in 2014) make some logical sense. The Regents have hired a search firm and the search is underway. Needless to say that so-called outsiders are certainly possible but the public would never get so much as a whiff of who those might be as those candidates will not want to endanger their current employment. When Mary Sue Coleman was hired away from the University of Iowa, all interviews and meetings were so secretive they did not occur in the State of Michigan.
So again, its all mostly speculation. That said, there are various factions who have championed certain possible candidates. Needless to say all of the aforementioned names have surfaced in certain discussions. One other interesting possibility that has been heard whispered in certain hallways is one Earl Lewis. Here are some links to familiarize yourself http://www.mellon.org/about_foundation/officers/earl-lewis and http://www.mellon.org/news_publications/announcements-1/earl-lewis-elected-next-president-of-the-andrew-w.-mellon-foundation/ . Briefly put, Mr. Lewis was previously the Dean of Rackham School of Graduate Studies at Michigan and a Vice Provost. He left Michigan after 15 years in 2004 to become the Provost (2nd in charge behind the President) at Emory (technically a better ranked/near Ivy League school). In 2012 Mr. Lewis left Emory to become the President of the Andrew Mellon Foundation which is one of the largest educational trusts/benefactors in the country. Mr. Lewis has an impecible academic record, has UofM ties, is fairly young in terms of candidates for this kind of position and could bring connections out the proverbial wazoo considering the people he has dealt with as President of the Mellon Foundation. Lewis would also be the first African-American President at Michigan. He's certainly an intriguing candidate and those who hear the name and credentials have had little argument that he'd make a good choice.
Further, a few more logs have been placed on the fire that perhaps an Obama Cabinet member looking towards their post-government career could be the choice. As many may note Janet Napolitano, the chief of Homeland Security, recently left her post to become Chancellor of the University of California system. Further, as some of you are also aware, Gordon Gee, the President at Ohio State University has announced his pending retirement and there has been talk that certain cabinet members have put out word that they may be interested. So, would Secretary of Education Arne Duncan or even Department of Justice Head Eric Holder or any number of other cabinet members make the jump a year early to set up their post-political life. Again, its safe to assume if rumors are coming out of Columbus that cabinet members are making themselves available, the same is happening here.
Finally, a late personal vote for Adrian College President Jeffrey Docking simply for the recent announcement of Adrian's new program that pays part or all of the student loan payments of any Adrian graduate who makes less than $37,000 a year. http://www.freep.com/article/20130918/NEWS06/309180024/adrian-college-loan-repayment-alma-college-student-loans-debt-college-affordability As we can all attest, the amount of student loan debt that college graduates are accruing plus the diminished number of jobs, and well-paying jobs and ever increasing cost of secondary education are creating an entire generation that is choking under their student loans. Props/Kudos/Raise a Glass to President Docking for stepping up for the students and graduates to try an innovative way of trying to alleviate some of that debt. As the University embarks on the Victors for Michigan fundraising effort, one can only hope a huge chunk of that money will head towards scholarships. While I certainly commend gifts of Stephen Ross and Charlie Munger, right now the students need scholarships a little more than we need new buildings. In that spirit, any of you who are reading this and agree with the latter assertions can help some Michigan undergraduate scholarships and get yourself some Michigan memorabilia at this online auction fundraiser http://www.biddingforgood.com/auction/AuctionHome.action?vhost=mgoauction which is running all fall.
If anything interesting comes to light, Part III of the Diary will rapidly be posted. In the meantime, Go Blue and Give Back.
With recruiting news beginning to pick up as prospects make official and unofficial visits during football season and as the early signing period for the 2014 class (Nov. 13–20) nears, this seemed like a good time for a baseball recruiting update, especially one focusing on 2014. Since I first posted the chart showing the 2014 commits in April, there have been two changes:
Michael Hendrickson: committed to the Wolverines in July (see Hello post).
Brandon Hughes: decommitted from Michigan and then committed to Michigan State in August. Hughes was the last of the Michigan commits who had originally pledged to former coach Rich Maloney, so this wasn't that surprising a development.
In the revised 2014 chart (posted in a reply for technical reasons), Hendrickson takes the place of Hughes, and the class remains nine-strong. I've updated the rankings as much as possible (lacking access to the pay-walled Perfect Game rankings, the only ones listed for that site are a couple that were reported at the time of the player's commitment). Michigan has three commits in PBR's overall top 50, covering a ten-state region:
- #18 Grant Reuss (#1 in Michigan)
- #46 Jayce Vancena (#7 in Ohio)
- #48 Rahman Williams (#11 in Illinois)
The chart includes a few new scouting reports (viewable by cursoring over the underlined text in the rightmost column), including this one for Williams, posted by Perfect Game in July:
Medium build with good strength in his lower half. Switch hitter, natural right hander, short rotational swing right handed, pull line drive contact, has some strength and bat speed. Open stance left handed, stays on his back side, short swing, contact approach. Sound infield actions, feet work well through the ball, light on his feet, shows good body control and range to the ball, good arm strength.
At least two of Michigan's commits appear to be in the conversation as potential 2014 MLB draft picks. Reuss is one, as PBR indicated in a June article on ten 2014 players "creating buzz on summer circuit":
Reuss continues to climb on Major league boards. . . . Really high ceiling. Arm works well. Up to 89mph for us. Command needs to improve to really be considered elite. Still feeling out his mechanics. Breaking ball spins well (71mph). Potential to be swing and miss pitch. Should be a high follow for major league scouts this coming spring.
Another is Drew Lugbauer. At the Nine Baseball site, Jeff Sullivan placed Lugbauer at #38 in his top 100 high school prospects for the 2014 MLB draft. Kiley McDaniel, a national baseball analyst for Scout, ranked Lugbauer #13 in his list of high school MLB draft prospects from the Northeast, projecting him as a potential 5th-rounder. Lugbauer was also included in Jonathan Mayo's rundown of top performers at a recent showcase hosted by the Mets at Citi Field:
Left-handed hitting catcher with power. Big and strong, good arm strength, other parts of his defense are developing.
Finalist for Ockimey
Michigan apparently still has scholarship money left for the 2014 class as they are in the final three for a top uncommitted prospect from Philadelphia, Josh Ockimey. A 6-4, 220-pound first baseman out of Neumann-Goretti H.S., Ockimey had originally committed to Arkansas but decommitted in August when the Razorbacks' associate head coach, Todd Butler, left to become the head coach at Wichita State. Not coincidentally, Wichita State is one of Ockimey's finalists, and he'll take an official visit there this coming weekend. He officially visited Michigan this past weekend and Indiana the weekend before. According to what he told Chris Webb in this blog post, Ockimey will choose from those three by October 5.
PBR has Ockimey ranked #6 in Pennsylvania and #53 overall, and they offered this assessment in a hot list posted earlier this month:
Ockimey is a physical beast in the box, standing at 6-foot-4, 220 pounds. He has some holes in his swing, but shows raw power and is athletic. He has capable actions at first base with the potential to put it all together and be a run producing, middle-of-the-order hitter at next level.
He's also slotted at #98 in that Nine Baseball list of top high school prospects for the 2014 MLB draft.
That post from Webb mentions some 2016 prospects who have visited Michigan recently, including Dion Henderson (see PBR profile), a left-hand pitcher out of Dearborn Divine Child ranked #4 in the state by PBR. He's planning to make his college choice by the end of 2013. He holds a Michigan offer, with other possible destinations including Kentucky, LSU, and Vanderbilt. Another prospect recently offered by Michigan is Henderson's high school teammate Collin Goslin (PBR profile), also a lefty but in the class of 2015. PBR has Goslin ranked #3 in the state and #41 overall.
Note on title: The usual "Baseball Recruiting Update" for the main title seemed boring, so I tried to come up with something different. Also considered "Fishin'"—any thoughts, other ideas?