100% worst thing ever
This was nearly the entire recap. [Bryan Fuller/MGoBlog]
I can't fully capture the noise this fan made. A guttural wail, as if Chewbacca had been stabbed in the heart, or a baby elephant had suffered a collapsed lung. It was the sound of a soul forcefully leaving a man's body.
Michigan had a 10:29 scoreless drought in this game, Indiana went on a 28-0 run, and that noise emanated from the seats behind press row. Let's try this sports thing again tomorrow.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- University of Michigan men's basketball senior guard Spike Albrecht announced today (Friday, Dec. 11) he has elected to step away from the court for the remainder of the season. He will concentrate on his continued recovery and the rehabilitation process following bilateral hip surgery this past summer.
"This has been the toughest decision I have ever had to make," said Albrecht. "After taking a hard look at what is best for me, and this team, I will be stepping away from the game that has meant so much to me.
"I am so thankful for what Coach Beilein, the assistants and the medical staff have done for me during my career and in particular over the last year while I was dealing with this injury. I just have a little more to go and I really need to take the proper time to finish my rehab.
"The University of Michigan has provided me and my family so much, I don't really even have the words to express my gratitude. This place is truly special and I hope I was able to leave just a little bit of a mark during my career. I cannot thank Wolverine nation enough for all the love and support they have shown me throughout my four years here. Forever and always -- Go Blue!"
"This has been an agonizing decision for Spike, especially at this juncture of the season," said U-M head coach John Beilein. "He has done so much to get back to this point, but his long-term health is what is most important now and in the future. We want only the best for Spike.
"He is a tremendous young man, who has had a very special career. His important role in our 2013 NCAA Tournament run and his incredible performance in the national title game were straight out of a storybook. His sophomore year we would not have won the Big Ten title or made a second straight trip in the Elite Eight without him.
"He has proven time and time again what heart and determination can do. Even last year, he played through so much pain, but held the team together and guided us through tough times."
Albrecht played in 115 career games for the Wolverines. A two-time team captain, he was named Michigan's co-MVP last season after starting 18 of 31 games and posting a career-best 7.5 points per game.
As a freshman, he played in all 39 games and helped U-M reach the Final Four for the first time in 20 years as well as tie the school record for wins (31). It was his 17-point performance in the national title game against Louisville that will see him remembered for years to come.
Albrecht guided U-M to a second straight Elite Eight appearance as a sophomore as the Wolverines lost on a last second-shot to Kentucky to miss a second straight Final Four. That same season, he played in all 37 games and helped the Maize and Blue to its first outright Big Ten title in 28 years.
He would be eligible to take a medical redshirt and return next year, but from the way they’re talking about this it seems clear his career over-over. It is a tribute to Spike how much that utterly sucks.
Looking at a 0% win expectancy might not cause you to slam your laptop shut in frustration if you’re thinking of it purely in terms of wins and losses, where a win would be 100% and a loss would be 0%. Unfortunately for all of us, that’s not how this stat works. You might want to pick your coffee cup up off your desk before you read Bill Connelly’s definition:
It is intended to say "Given your success rates, big plays, field position components, turnovers, etc., you could have expected to win this game X% of the time."
Before you put your mug back down, Michigan only had a win expectancy under 50% once, and that came against Minnesota. Also, their predicted win expectancy heading into The Game was 61%. The only silver lining is that this could be the game that killed the Dumb and Dumber “So you’re telling me there’s a chance” meme. No, Lloyd, there was not. There was literally no chance in a game that S&P+ projected Michigan to win by almost five points.
[After THE JUMP: Mathlete’s Four Factors, some depressing numbers, and some colorful charts to distract from said depressing numbers]
Announced at 8:30 this morning:
Coach Kill announced today that he is retiring effective immediately due to health reasons. Tracy Claeys has been named interim head coach.
— Minnesota Football (@GopherFootball) October 28, 2015
Kill has suffered from epilepsy—he missed the 2013 Michigan game—and overcame kidney cancer to build Minnesota back to as good as it ever was under Glen Mason. He was extremely well respected, as a coach and as a person, by everyone on this side of the Jug he won last year. Every football coach should be Jerry Kill; damn the world where we can't even have one.
Press conference live stream.
I thought I got it, but I didn’t really understand until Saturday. I grew up in a house with a dad who referred to football as the sport “where those muscle-bound gland cases run into each other” and a mom who went to Michigan State and spent every Saturday watching her beloved Spartans Sparty No! themselves into oblivion. Being an impressionable little dude I naturally followed along- at least, I did for the first 17 years of my life.
Mom spent a copious amount of time molding my fandom, and I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that when I told her I was going to Michigan she felt a lot like NFL reporters last December; of course there was a chance, but come on. I think she still spends time replaying the course of events and wondering how things turned so quickly; factor in that Michigan seeped so deeply into my soul that my profession is now entwined with the University and you can see why she feels like she had things so perfectly set up only for them to implode in the most spectacular and unlikely fashion imaginable. I get it now, mom. I saw what happened last Saturday and it was more than just watching something fall apart, it was feeling something fall apart and fall apart in mere seconds.
The funny thing about it is that it was right in front of us the whole time. The numbers, those cut-and-dry harbingers of doom, were gnawing at the back of our minds, telling us that it was a fool’s errand to hope we could run out the clock against fate. That why it stings in such a strange way. Like my mom, Michigan fans got blindsided even after turning our heads and watching it come straight for us. At some point you realize what you’re doing is the equivalent of holding together a heavy box with scotch tape and inevitably everything just spills out, and in a particularly painful but possibly (personally) karmically justified way I have some common ground with my mom once again. We both put our faith in something other than the numbers and got burned; now I know why I like stats so much.
[After THE JUMP: It went better than you thought. It also went worse than you thought.]