"He's a hard worker, and he watched me and Tim (Hardaway Jr.) and Nik (Stauksas) put work in to become (first-round picks), and I'm just happy he's getting better," Burke said. "It's great for the program, too. It shows what type of program the University of Michigan is and the direction it continues to go in."
For those of us who can’t get enough all things Barwis:
Here is a decent update on the recent strength and conditioning clinic held by the staff at Michigan; along with pictures and an audio interview.
Blog post recapping the event:
(Scroll down to find the two part post)
Barwis Interview (audio):
(Click on the Michigan logo in the post for the two-part audio
Photos of the strength and conditioning facility and clinic:
(Scroll down through the MSU and OSU photos to see the Michigan content.
I love this man and his vision for the Michigan program…EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE
2006 with setup
Brady Quinn for heisman
Jimmah! for heisman
and apparently I need twenty five words, I guess links don't count as words? What makes a word? Is an initial a word? I think the 25 word minimum is crap. Can we make it 10 or 15?
So yesterday I used a power failure to finish up reading <i>The Big House: Fielding Yost and the Building of Michigan Stadium</i>. I thought I would share a couple of thoughts about the book.
Let me begin by saying that I do think that if you have any interest in the history of the Michigan football program, this book is a definite must read. The prose lacks a certain lyrical flow, but it is more than made up for in the exceptional level of research done. Drawing from Yost's letters as coach, AD, and his personal correspondence, along with extensive excerpts from <i>The Michigan Daily</i>, Dr. Soderstrom gives the reader an exceptional view of what it was like to be a Michigan football fan in the 1920s.
Which leads me to one of my favorite things I drew from the book: In 85 years, Michigan football fans (and college football in general) has changed immensely and at the same time, very little. There were academic wailings about the quality of student that was brought in to be a part of the football team, concerns about a stadium "arms race" among colleges, the concerns over professionalism and its impact upon the sport, concerns about student rowdiness at games and on road trips, the concerns about students using football games as an excuse to get drunk, and my personal favorite, the Daily repeatedly calling out the Ferry Field crowd for its lack of vocal and enthusiastic support for what were some great Michigan teams. So much of college football handwringing today is really nothing more than variations on a theme.
I also enjoyed the insight into Fielding Yost. We need never question where the popularity of the phrase "Michigan man" came from. It's clearly a Yostism. In dozens of letters and speeches, his focus was on the "Michigan man" (and woman, Yost's willingness to embrace a co-educational university and equality in physical education for women is a recurrent theme in the book.) I was also impressed with Yost's tirelessness, particularly in his advocacy for building Michigan Stadium, and the obstacles he was compelled to overcome to build it. Indeed, even the reminder that before it was Yost Ice Arena, it was Yost Field House is worth the time devoted to it, the first Field House in the country.
All in all, I enjoyed the book because I have an interest in the subject area, and the level of research more than made up for any other failings of the book.
Have a good weekend.
The Hoover Street Rag
This is a repost of an article I wrote last year for my blog, which means I'm sure no one read it. If anyone likes this feature let me know and I'd be happy to right up some more recaps like this.
Setting the Stage: UM came into
this game 4-0 ranked #6 in the country. NW was 3-1, ranked #22, after
losing their first game of the year to a Wake team that finished 3-8.
NW beat UM at the big house the year before and was looking for an
unprecedented winning streak against the Wolverines.
What Happened?: UM was in control and was up 16-0 starting the 4th quarter. A 2TD lead that required 2 two point conversions to be successful in order to tie, sounds like it should have been an easy win for Michigan. However, it turned out to be a choke-job loss. How did this happen?
Bottom Line: 2 mins into the fourth quarter NW finally gets on the board with a TD run from some guy named Levelle Brown. So what do they do? Go for 2 of course. And of course it is good as D'wayne Bates catches a pass and the score becomes UM 16 NW 8. Now the Wildcats only need a TD and the 2 pointer to tie.
So UM is going to get the ball back and all they have to do is run the ball and kill some time, just eat up 13 minutes and protect the football. Sounds easy. However upon getting the ball back UM decides to fumble on the first offensive play and give the ball back to NW. The debacle is now in full swing.
The Mich defense defies the odds and some how holds NW to a field goal. The score is now UM 16 NW 11. 10 mins and 46 secs remain.
Michigan is going to get the ball back, again all they need to do is kill some time and avoid turnovers. NW needs to score to win and all Mich needs to do is hang onto the football. Somehow the Scott Dreisbach manages to not turn the ball over but without any momentum the Wolverines can't get anything going and forced to punt.
Surprise, surprise the punt is crap! NW gets the ball on their own 40 and a shortfield. Somehow the michigan defense prevents the wildcats from getting a TD instead holding them to a field goal. The score is now UM 16 NW 14. 5 mins and 25 secs remain.
Again Mich justs needs to run some clock and avoid doing anything stupid (which at times has proven to be very hard for the Wolverines during crunchtime). Michigan manages to kill some clock and is now forced to punt.
1:45 remains in the game all NW needs is a fg for the win. However they will need to go at least 50 yards for this to be an easily makeable kick. However for UM the 1996 defense did some foreshadowing of what the 2o05 Mich defense would be like (very porous during the opponant's last drive of the game). NW drives easily to midfield, but Michigan holds. It is now 4-13, now or never for the Wildcats. And Steve Schnurr finds Brian Musso for the first down and the ball is now on the Mich 35 with a minute to go.
It was all academic from here, Mich knew that they had choked, and NW knew they just had to get a few more yards and kick the FG. And that's what happened as NW won on a 39 yarder with 8 seconds to go.
Inside the Numbers: Fumbles - UM fumbled 5 times losing 3 (including that very costly 4th quarter fumble). NW fumbled three times but only lost one.
4th quarter yards - UM gained a whopping 28 yards in the 4th quarter, compared to NW's 172.
Debacle Classification: Choke-job, plain and simple. What else can you call blowing a 16 point lead in the 4th quarter and failing to score a single point (besides Sparty-esque)?
If you liked this and want some more articles like this - let me know, I'll also take suggestions on which games to right about!
Living in the outskirts of South Bend, I had many opportunities to see Notre Dame games. During Notre Dame's Gerry Faust years one of our high school teachers that was an usher would sneak a couple of his students in if they showed up. A few of my friends did this, but I was never interested. I could care less about Notre Dame, and they weren't very good. This was the before the Lou Holtz era.
The first time I was able to see a game I really wanted to see a at ND stadium was the 1998 Michigan-Notre Dame game. I had tried to see the few Mich-ND games there before hand but was never able to get tickets at a "not insane price". For me, $400 was just too much.
Back to 1998, the year after the Wolverine's National Championship. One of my co-workers parents were season ticket holders from out of state. He was unable to go to the game and sold them to me at face value, which was all profit to him. Woot!!! Second ever cheapest ND-Mich game I ever attended.
Pre-season #5, Michigan comes to town with a new QB replacing the departed Brian Griese. A tall, skinny, not very mobile kid by the name of Tom Brady (Jr.). There was also alot of buzz about a freshman that was supposed to be the best ever at Michigan, Drew Henson. Another noteworthy player on Michigan's side was a blue chip wide reciever by the name of David Terrell.
Ranked #20, Notre Dame was coached by Bob "you may have heard I coached at Notre Dame" Davie. Their QB was also playing in his first start, Jarious Jackson.
The game started kind of slow. Both teams trading a field goal. With kicker Kraig Baker missing a 43 yard and 33 yard FG. attempt on Michigan's 2nd. and 3rd. possession, he was later replaced by Jay Feely. Feely added a field goal for a 6-3 lead before ND matched it with a score of 6-6 with a few minutes left in the half. A Tom Brady QB TD run made it 13-6 at the half. Michigan looked decent, but didn't play very well. It seemed they couldn't get out of their own way. Long drives would stall out, and the two missed field goals would have been nice to have.
After a comedy of errors and costly fumbles, Notre Dame snapped off 30 unanswered points in the second half. Michigan had one scoring opportunity, but a field goal was blocked. With the game out of hand 36-13, Drew Henson came in for the final points of the game. Henson drove the team 80 yards, completing 5 of 8, including a 17 yard scramble. His TD pass to Jerame Tuman came as I was standing up to make way for the swarm of ND and Michigan fans making their way out of the stadium to beat the "rush". One set of fans happy, another starting to second guess LLoyd Carr despite Tom Brady having pretty good numbers of a Qb's first game (23-36, 267yds, 0 int. 0td.)
Two things I took from this game were, "where did the awesome defense of last year go" and "Why to people leave with three minutes left in a game?". I never leave early, ever. I paid to see a game, good, bad, or ugly.
The following weekend, a kid by the name of Donovan McNabb made the wolverine defense look even worse. Michigan lost to Syracuse and was 0-2. Welcome to the scrambling QB era Mr. Carr. I don't think you would call both of those offenses a "spread" offense, because mostly it was an athletic QB buying time and hitting open recievers while the defense is in pursuit. This was a different animal than an option team, where the QB was not really a threat to pass. Once the defense figured, ok, this guy isn't going to run, we'll cover the recievers, whoops, there he goes.
All I knew was there were some serious issues with the defense, but I didn't know if it was personell, scheme, or coaching. I believe I had it backwards back then.
Earlier I posted some observations on LSU’s offense against OSU’s defense in the BCS championship game. That match up was particularly interesting because of OSU’s problems with the spread and M’s shift in offensive philosophy. There were some interesting things I noted regarding the OSU offense versus LSU’s defense.
I was surprised at the success Wells had. I expected LSU to take Wells away and make Boeckman step up. They tried but it was only OSU’s play calling that put Boeckman in the spotlight. Despite the success of Wells, Tressel opted for offensive balance. If an alternate universe existed just for my experimental pleasure (I’d have like way more publications and probably be tenured somewhere Ivy covered), it would be interesting to see what would have happened if OSU went all DeBord and just kept feeding Wells.
Boeckman is an acceptable game manager who throws a nice long ball but otherwise is very limited. Aside from some clever play calls, Boeckman wasn’t consistent enough to keep the chains moving. LSU put their corners alone in man press coverage and went after Boeckman. OSU was not able to overcome the negative plays that resulted and couldn’t spring enough big plays to make up for their offensive inconsistency. I was surprised at the prevalence of sideline go routes OSU ran and Boeckman threw. It made me wonder if that type of route is the only one Tressel really trusts Boekcman to throw. They also avoided the center of the field (like WOAH!) further demonstrating Tressel’s lack of trust in his QB due to his proclivity for playing pitch and catch with the safety. The most shocking thing was the ability of LSU to go three deep at corner and blanket these routes in man press coverage with no safety help. Despite throwing some pretty nice balls Boeckman only completed one of these passes and unfortunately that was to Chevis Jackson (and nearly had another picked.) I noticed Jackson’s name was called a lot in coverage which made me wonder if Tressel wasn’t trying, unsuccessfully, to pick on him. I’m left wondering, completely unsupported by a sufficient sample size, if OSU’s wideouts are capable of getting deep separation from a decent corner without some kind of “Jebus make Wells stop!” play action. There is reason to hope that Trent and Warren can handle the OSU WR’s especially since Trent’s strength is running straight really fast (beat Ginn in the 200 m hurdles blah blah blah) and that is what the OSU WR’s like to do.
The final word is Wells is a ridiculously terrifying man beast freak and will be sufficient (along with the defense and some cherry picking from Boeckman) to ensure OSU only loses 1 or maybe 2 games in 2008 winning the Heisman along the way. As with ND in Weis’ first 2 seasons, there just aren’t enough teams on their schedule that can exploit their weaknesses. They will go to another BCS bowl and depending on the match up may be in for another nationally broadcast embarrassment.