I'VE HAD JUST ABOUT ENOUGH OF YOU SONNY
This story really made me proud to be a Michigan fan. Last year I went to evey road game and I was embarrassed of the rest of the Big Ten. Even Northwestern fans made asses of themself. I know Michigan fans arent perfect, and sometimes we stoop down to the level of our competition when it comes to trash talking, but as we see every year, there is a line that we know not to cross. The fans of the school down south continue to cross that line.
I am absolutely for being proud of your school and despising your competitor's team, but especially on a day like 9/11 where we are reminded that we really are all one, I can be proud to call myself a Michigan Wolverine becasue we are the Leaders and the Best, and we win and lose with class.
Utah visitors: Hats off to Michigan fans
Posted by Jim Carty | The Ann Arbor News September 11, 2008 09:33AM
to the editor don't seem to attract a lot of attention online, but we
had three in this week's Ann Arbor News that I thought were noteworthy,
particularly because negative fan experiences seem to get a lot more
attention than positive ones. All were from Utah visitors in town for
the season opener against Michigan two weeks ago.
All three offered deeply felt and - and in some cases seemingly
surprised - kudos in regard to how Utah fans were treated by Michigan
First, from Sarah Shepard Scott of Salt Lake City:
On Aug. 30 my family and I embarked on a long, hot climb to
the little "red" section in the rafters of Michigan Stadium. There we
would join a relatively small, albeit loyal, group of Utah fans.
I was nervous because we were trekking through a solid background
of blue and gold, over 100,000 strong, and they were pumped for the
season-opening game. With me were my 11-year-old son and my 77-year-old
Roughly four hours later, in rafter temperature of plus 100 degrees
and hermetically sealed to our neighbors, Utahns were rewarded with an
improbable outcome. Way up above, their fans made their way down again
through the sea of blue and gold, warily. But instead of bitter remarks
and sullen looks, Utahns were largely met with congratulations,
handshakes and good humor. The brave smiles and goodwill of everyone
from exiting fans to bus drivers and local business owners were
compelling, and observed by many.
In later conversations, it was clear that the post-game behavior of
Michigan fans made more than a few of us visitors reflect on what we
had witnessed. While we remained happy for our team, those reflections
gave us all pause. Most of us saw that Michigan's loss revealed its
greatest strength - a supportive community.
While confidence in their long-term success and pride in the history
of a standout program likely buoyed Michigan fans as they demonstrated
grace in the face of disappointment, it was a rare sight nonetheless.
And, for those of us in smaller houses, it was inspiring.
A second latter came from Doug Cahoon of Cottonwood Heights, Utah:
I was one of the lucky ones from Utah who attended the game Aug. 30, with my oldest son.
Other football fans could learn a lesson from Michigan and their fan
base. My family and I were spit on at a UCLA game and I was hit in the
back of the head by an elderly man's cane at a BYU game. I have been
taunted by San Diego State and UNLV in their respective stadiums. The
experience to and in the Big House was very different.
Before the game started, the Michigan Band marched down to the end
of the field where they welcomed us with the Utah fight song and a very
sincere welcome over the PA system. As Utah did well early in the game
I was embarrassed over the taunting some of the 3,500 Utah fans did
towards the 105,000 Michigan fans. But there was little response from
Michigan fans. Then back to the airport where the young attendant at
the car rental sincerely said, "We appreciate you guys (Utes) taking it
easy on us and letting us make it a close game." Thanks Michigan, you
showed my son and me how real fans with class act.
And, finally, a third from Patrick J. Healey of Holladay, Utah:
I just got back from visiting your stadium and your fair state. I wanted to make three quick comments.
• Thank you for being so hospitable! Five friends came to watch the
game and cheer on our team. The fans in Section 15 were very generous
and showed good sportsmanship. Sad to say some of the Utah fans I could
not say likewise; for them I apologize. It was a good experience.
• You need to cut some slack to your players and coaches. Yes, they
were befuddled by our defense because our defense has been playing this
scheme and practicing with a team that has been playing the spread for
years. Other than some questionable calls, our team hurt themselves
more on miscues and penalties.
• Six years ago we lost to Arizona in a similar game and went on to
win the rest of the games that season. Give your team a real chance
before tearing them down.
Thanks for the kindnesses shown and I hope someday you will come
visit us and that we can show you as much Western hospitality as you
showed us of Midwestern hospitality. You have the best fans I've ever
met in any stadium.
Great job by all three Utes fans to take time to highlight the positive.
And in return, we offer a little advice to the good people of Utah:
Midwestern hospitality, while generally similar to what you enjoyed
here in Ann Arbor, is not universal. Any doubts about that will be
erased by your first game in Columbus, Ohio.
I own too many books. I read…a lot. But I learned the lesson a long time ago that books are heavy, and when you have to move them, 35+ boxes of books is a lot of boxes. Movers charge by the pound. So I now only buy “important” books, i.e. the kinds of books that can only be found in university libraries or literary reviews. As a result, I use my local library…a lot. Sometimes that means waiting for books. I am currently second on the waiting list for Steven Erickson’s new book in his series, The Malazan Book of the Fallen. After catching up on my magazine reading, I was left with nothing to read. So I hopped online and started trolling my local library catalogue. And here in London, Ontario, what do I find? None other than the Bo Schembechler/Mitch Albom book: BO. (Warner: New York), 1989. It arrived at my local branch yesterday and from page one it was nothing less that fabulous. He tells story after story after story.
What I loved most about this book were the two chapters that highlight the 1969 season and the 10 Year War. Bo’s stories about his first season at Michigan were fantastic and the parallels to this year with Coach Rodriguez jump out at you again and again.
He brought his entire staff with him from Miami [Not That Miami]. Upon arriving and seeing the facilities and locker rooms Bo’s first response to his staff was,
“Men, we are going to make a few changes here.” 
He treated the players like dogs. In the racially charged 60’s everyone got the same treatment. They were all equal…they were all dogs.
Up to that point, spring practice was a series of light workouts. They started two-a-days in the spring. He cursed, he yelled and he kicked them in the butt. When Dan Dierdorf first introduced himself to Bo, he extended a hand and politely offered his name, and in return Bo grabbed a fistful of his midsection and promptly told him, “You are fat.”  Turn that boy over to Barwis. Eeeeeeee.
Soon Bo had them doing drills, screaming at them so much that Dierdorf ended up telling a reporter,
“The track team runs less than us. And their coach isn’t as mean.” 
He tells the story of how, during this pre-season, the coaches came up with the now famous slogan, “Those Who Stay Will Be Champions.” Some did not stay. And someone wrote in marker on Bo’s sign, which he paid for out of his own pocket, “And those who quit will be doctors, lawyers, and captains of industry.” He then names the player who is now a lawyer and finishes off with:
“Didn’t think I knew, did you, John? You owe me $150.” 
He says this about that 1969 team:
“Of all the Wolverines I’ve ever had, they had the most right to resent me; after all they didn’t pick me, they got stuck with me. And I killed them. I ran them ragged. I made them suffer every day of that first maddening season. Somehow, they believed in me. They stayed.” 
What Bo did that first season was key off on the Michigan-Ohio game. Bo against his former coach and mentor. Bo figured that gunning for Ohio State would carry his team through all the bumps and hurdles that would come. After beating Iowa 51-6 that year in the second to last game, in the locker room the team did not celebrate, instead a slow, rising chant started among them, “BEAT THE BUCKS, BEAT THE BUCKS…” The coaches joined in, and the scene go so intense that Bo screamed to one of his assistants, “That !@#$% Ohio State better be good—or we’ll kill them.” 
Against a team that was labeled “The Greatest Team of the Century” and favoured to win by 17, Michigan was up 24-12 by the half and in the locker room there is Jim Young, the defensive coordinator pounding on the chalk board, “They will not score again!”  They didn’t.
Those who stayed were champions.
In the light of the Justin Boren departure and the whole “Family values” thing, another story grabbed me. Bo recounted the time when the team was grumbling a lot behind Bo’s back about practices being too tough. One of the instigators was captain Andy Cannavino.
Bo pulled Cannavino into his office and gave him this speech, by the end of which Andy was in tears:
“Now let me tell you something. When you were back there in Cleveland, at St. Joseph’s High School, Ohio State, where your daddy went to school, didn’t even offer you a scholarship. We brought you to the University of Michigan. The coaching staff made you an All-Big Ten player. Your team mates elected you captain of the team. And you have the audacity to criticize Michigan Football? How dare you?
“I’d like to stand you up before all those guys who played here in the past, all those guys who won championships, went to bowl games, did all the things you want to do in college football, and I want you to tell them that your practices are too hard, that they’re hitting too much, that you spend too much time watching film! And you know what they’re going to tell you? Grow up! Grow up and be a man! And if you won’t, then get the hell out of Michigan football!
“Cannavino, we have one problem on this team, and only one problem on this team, and that is you! And until you change, we will never win. You are the captain of this team. What you say, especially the other players and especially the young ones will listen to. How can you possibly ruin this team by criticizing the leadership here? You are the problem. Understand me? You are the problem! 
With tears streaming down his cheeks, the young man left, and the Michigan defense, from that point forward, did not allow a touchdown in 24 consecutive quarters, eventually beating Washington in the Rose Bowl.
Who cares if this is not the best piece of literature ever written, I think next time I am in the MDen, I am going to buy this book and a couple more of Bo’s because these are “important” works. Bo is a great read, especially this year of all years. I highly recommend it.
Week Two: Miami (OH) 6, UM 16.
The Good: The Offensive playcalling. The Defensive Line continued to be impressive. The LB play was much improved, but can still get better. The first and second year players (FR, rFR, SO), from a talent/potential standpoint (LBs Ezeh and Mouton, DT Martin, DE RVB, KR BooBoo, RBs McGuffie and Shaw, WR Odoms and Hemingway). Barwis - The team, especially the D gets stronger as the game goes on. Best players: DL (young guys too), "Sam I am", and Shaw (before he got hurt).
The Bad: The offense
struggled after starting the game looking sharp. The QBs still can't seem to complete a pass thrown further than 10 yards downfield (I know why Mario and Adrian left, and feel bad for the current WRs - this year only). The secondary was not sharp. They were bailed out of several long pass plays because of dropped passes by the Miami WRs. Special Teams started off good with a 47 yd FG, but then missed a 41 yd FG and an extra point. In addition, a holding penalty negated a 40-something yard KO return by BooBoo. Why does it seem like UM is playing against the best punters in the Country every week?
Summary: If Week One's Offense could best be summed up as "recruiting next years QB", then this week's Offense started off like it was preparing for "Ludicrous Speed" and ended like it too... Week Two's O got several more big plays and two long TD drives (Improvement). I expect the O to get better each week as the young players get more experienced and the game 'slows down' for them. The Defense continues to meet expectations, although the D needs to stiffen against the middle running game and the secondary needs to catch up to the DL. After two weeks (yes it is too early for this, but I couldn't resist): Coach Shafer (here, here, here, and here) said he wants his D to stop the run; get to the QB (knock him out) and then get to the backup; force turnovers; and score if possible. Measurables (National Rankings): UM is 4th in Rush YPG (41.5), 2nd in Rush YPA (1.1), 1st in Sacks (9), 1st in Sack Yardage (-69), and tied for 38th in Turnovers Gained (4)... so I'd say we are on track.
Week Three: In week two, ND confirmed that they are pretty much the same team as last year. That is great for UM, unfortunately UM is still learning who they are. Each week gets UM's O a little more experience and I expect another improvement this week. If the OL can keep it together, the run game should get even better, and if the QBs can hit a WR downfield (I think they will), then the O could really start to become effective. I think the O makes this step against ND. I really expect the best D performance of the season this week. Coach Shafer played against ND late last year, and is familiar with what ND will try and do. The UM DL can't wait to see the ND OL again (and add more sacks to the resume). Hopefully, the secondary will make a few of the catches that they have just barely missed in the first two weeks. ST will have another chance for a big day with returns. Prediction: UM 24, ND 10.
This is in response to Hoover Street Rag's September 9, 2008 post
about the Wave and their insinuation that the wave started at the Miami
game was incorrect and inappropriate. Brian criticized the
wave as well earlier this week.
I have attended Michigan football games for a long
time, and I understand the tradition of the wave at Michigan Stadium. I also understand that HSR represents former marching band
members and that the band prides themselves on keeping traditions alive
(as do most alums), and thus they felt it was necessary to remind
everyone on how to properly perform this Michigan staple.
said, can you really knock the students for starting one this past
weekend? I know Brian specifically commented on the inappropriateness
of the wave at the Miami game due to the close score, however, if you
strictly adhere to the 2 touchdown lead rule, these kids might not get
to participate in a wave ALL YEAR! That would be a travesty not only
because the wave is a joyous, memorable activity, but also because then
the tradition and knowledge of how to perform the wave correctly is not
taught to the freshman and other newbies. That lapse could be
extremely detrimental to the continuation of the tradition in future
As we've heard repeatedly, this season is full changes and question marks. In the same spirit, perhaps the two touchdown rule
should be modified for the next few seasons in light of said changes.
I appreciate HSR's guide to the wave, and I understand Brian's negative
reaction, but lets get real people. We need to embrace the small
things this season because that's all we've got. I do not think the
student's were wrong in starting the wave at the Miami game, as it did
more to enliven the crowd than both the second and third quarter
performances by the Michigan offense. Careful, or you 90s alums may
find yourselves to be the new wave of crotchety old Michigan men and on
a slippery slope to yelling "DOWN IN FRONT!"
With the seeming lack of improvement in many aspects of our football team against Miami of Ohio, one positive did emerge; we learned which running back is best suited for which running plays. McGuffie: Fared extremely well from the i-formation (mostly sweeps), and from short screens/swings. These are where he gained most of his yards (3 catches for 32 yards). A very impressive day for McGuffie (4.4 ypc) compared with his highly mediocre performance last week. McGuffie did not perform as well from our basic spread-option looks and running the ball up the middle. His size simply counts against him as he gets knocked down very quickly. A great open-field runner, not a between the tackles type it would seem. More i-form! More McGuffie! Shaw: Both the touches Shaw had in this game were very impressive (2 carries for 45 yards). As opposed to McGuffie, Shaw is a much more effective runner from the zone-option read look. His speed and his shiftyness allows him to go inside-out for these type of larger gains. Why Rodriguez only used Shaw twice in these situations is beyond me. He was easily our most effective runner out of the zone-read look in the Miami of Ohio game. I want more Shaw. Minor: Though used sparingly (1 carry, 15 yards, TD) in this game, Minor scored the only TD of the bunch. Though Minor is infamous for his fumble-itis from last year (and one this year, though the call was questionable), he is 30 pounds bigger than McGuffie or Shaw. When he's not giving the ball to the other team, he was effective in shedding tackles, using his size and speed to gain yards. We saw very little of Minor in this game, so it's tough to tell. But what I saw, I liked. I'd expect to see him used more between the tackles in upcoming games. Grady: Again, saw very little of him. Aside from being perhaps Michigan's all-time greatest recruiting bust in combination his tendency two years ago to put the ball on the ground fairly consistently does not bode well for Grady. Not to mention a DUI for good measure to keep him out of game 1. Grady was effective in the short yardage situations in which we employed him. To be honest, I was expecting to see more out of Grady this year with maturation (oops!). I'd be interested to see if Rodriguez keeps him in this role for the rest of the season. Moundros: I love this guy. He's the greatest: hard worker, tough blocker. He deserves all the carries he gets. Lloyd must be cringing knowing that fullbacks somewhere are carrying the ball. I withhold comment on Brown til we can see him again. That's my evaluation of the running backs in the Miami of Ohio game. Hopefully the coaching staff saw these tendencies too and we'll see a more balanced running attack that plays to each backs' strength than the seeming haphazard multi-back system we've got going now.
With the seeming lack of improvement in many aspects of our football team against Miami of Ohio, one positive did emerge; we learned which running back is best suited for which running plays.
McGuffie: Fared extremely well from the i-formation (mostly sweeps), and from short screens/swings. These are where he gained most of his yards (3 catches for 32 yards). A very impressive day for McGuffie (4.4 ypc) compared with his highly mediocre performance last week. McGuffie did not perform as well from our basic spread-option looks and running the ball up the middle. His size simply counts against him as he gets knocked down very quickly. A great open-field runner, not a between the tackles type it would seem. More i-form! More McGuffie!
Shaw: Both the touches Shaw had in this game were very impressive (2 carries for 45 yards). As opposed to McGuffie, Shaw is a much more effective runner from the zone-option read look. His speed and his shiftyness allows him to go inside-out for these type of larger gains. Why Rodriguez only used Shaw twice in these situations is beyond me. He was easily our most effective runner out of the zone-read look in the Miami of Ohio game. I want more Shaw.
Minor: Though used sparingly (1 carry, 15 yards, TD) in this game, Minor scored the only TD of the bunch. Though Minor is infamous for his fumble-itis from last year (and one this year, though the call was questionable), he is 30 pounds bigger than McGuffie or Shaw. When he's not giving the ball to the other team, he was effective in shedding tackles, using his size and speed to gain yards. We saw very little of Minor in this game, so it's tough to tell. But what I saw, I liked. I'd expect to see him used more between the tackles in upcoming games.
Grady: Again, saw very little of him. Aside from being perhaps Michigan's all-time greatest recruiting bust in combination his tendency two years ago to put the ball on the ground fairly consistently does not bode well for Grady. Not to mention a DUI for good measure to keep him out of game 1. Grady was effective in the short yardage situations in which we employed him. To be honest, I was expecting to see more out of Grady this year with maturation (oops!). I'd be interested to see if Rodriguez keeps him in this role for the rest of the season.
Moundros: I love this guy. He's the greatest: hard worker, tough blocker. He deserves all the carries he gets. Lloyd must be cringing knowing that fullbacks somewhere are carrying the ball.
I withhold comment on Brown til we can see him again.
That's my evaluation of the running backs in the Miami of Ohio game. Hopefully the coaching staff saw these tendencies too and we'll see a more balanced running attack that plays to each backs' strength than the seeming haphazard multi-back system we've got going now.
I usually drink Brian's fan-criticism kool aid, but not this time. Yes, students shouldn't be doing the wave when they need to be loud and support the team. Yes, the band should be the only source of music once they step on the field. But students, it's always great to be a Michigan Wolverine, no matter what the score of a football game is. After all, the chant doesn't go, "It's great. To be. A Michigan football fan."
The thing that sets Michigan apart from most other football programs is
that it's great to be a Michigan Wolverine inside the Big House, at the
bars, in the classroom, and in the real world with a Michigan diploma.
If the only reason students should be proud to be Michigan Wolverines
is the success of the football team... well, then we're just another
student body that goes "WOOOOTT TRE$$ELL SUX!1!" when our team wins. And then boos them when they lose. We are - or should be - better than that. And that expectation is why it's great to be a Michigan Wolverine. As
"When your team is winning, be ready to be tough, because winning can
make you soft. On the other hand, when your team is losing, stick by
them. Keep believing."
Cheer up. Rick's doesn't close when the team loses.