it's a major award
Per ESPN, LaMarr Woodley is probably out this weekend, and next, after injuring his hammy against Cincinnati. Here's the link.
Woodley has been on a tear with 7.5 sacks in his past four games, including two against the New England Patriots in Sunday's victory, but he sat out the fourth quarter after injuring the hamstring in the third quarter. He leads the AFC with nine sacks.
Do you think he tackled Tom a little softer than normal? I've always wondered that when two players from the same college face off in the NFL.
Anyway, after next week's game against Cincinnati, Pittsburgh has a bye, so if he misses time, it's likely he'll return after the bye. I'm not a Steeler's fan, but it doesn't matter when it comes to UM players. Here's to hoping for a quick recovery and that he can return to his dominant ways.
The UGotW presses on irregardlessly. This week featuring hot, hot MAC-tion. Someone at ESPN must have lost a bet, and that bet was "I bet you can't show 4 straight MAC games with a straight face." That was quickly followed by the other guy saying "Oh yeah? Watch this!" So we get this:
As an aside, GIS for "big mac" also gets this:
Which means I'm not looking any further for that image at work. Rule 34 and all.
Tuesday rings in November and week 10 of the NCAA football season with Northern Illinois and Toledo. Both teams are 5-3 and battling for the lead for the MAC west division, with EMU I might add. Edge in this one goes to Toledo for playing without a nickname until 1923, then created one on a whim by a reporter for the student paper. The Daily would be proud.
Wednesday continues the Two Good MAC teams theme, with Temple playing The University of Ohio. Both teams are 5-3, and battling for the MAC east lead. So is this ESPN's new plan? To show hard-fought battles between two plucky, undersized, understaffed teams to show the amateur nature of college athletics? Or, to hype up THE GAME OF THE MILLENIUM: LSU VERSUS ALABAMA!!! THE ALABAMAGEDDON! That is a retorical question.
Moving on, MAC week starts running out of steam on Wednesday with Akron playing Miami (The hockey school, not the football school). Akron is still looking for their first conference win, while Miami just got buffaloed by the Buffalo Buffalo. At least there's an ACC "game" on opposite, FSU versus Boston College. BC has the tiebreaker for worst record in the ACC by virtue of their win against Maryland last week. FSU get the "Deja Vu" award for beating Duke and Maryland by the same score in back-to-back weeks, 41-16. One extra point for the odd 41 and 16 point scores. That's a Brian-level prediction.
Friday ends MAC week with a thud, with Central playing Kent State. Central is last in the Battle For Michigan, an imaginary trohpy I made up for the Michigan directional schools. Eastern won it, with Western taking a solid second. Northern did not play. Now that I've written 1600 words about the MAC, let me say a couple things about Friday's other game: USC versus Colorado. USC may not be as good as they usually are, but CU is worse than usual. Their lone win this year was against rival CSU, and they're hanging around the bottom of most NCAA categories. They are giving up just under 40 points per game. I have a friend who went to CU, and I haven't been able to call him in months.
Saturday will be like a bright, sunshine-y spring day after that week. But, just because they can, Hawaii versus Utah State starts at 12:00 eastern Sunday, making for six straight days of bad football. Hooray Rainbows!
Are we getting another round of questions from Bacon this week that Brian gathered from us?
I just got thru the book and now I feel like I have more questions than ever. I thought Brian said he was going to plow into the defense more in his questioning because it was glossed over in the book, but last week kinda felt like the end of the series though nothing was said.
From today's Detroit News (http://detnews.com/article/20111101/SPORTS0201/111010355/Fitz-Toussaint-...):
"I love the pink locker room," Van Bergen said. "I've never had an issue with the pink locker room. I think it gives it nice décor, the Feng Shui really feels good before the game. It warms you up. It's very welcoming. I think more teams should go with pink. I have no problem with it. I think it's a great touch. It's better than the off-white, jail-cell look."
He may be the most quotable of Michigan's current linemen, and with Molk, Lewan, etc., that's saying something.
This is my absolutely favorite outside source of analysis on Michigan's play. Gerdeman writes well, and is insightful. Here is this week's money quote:
Many outsiders are still expecting the standard Michigan collapse this season, and while that might still happen, it will happen for different reasons. I'm of the opinion that from here on out any losses incurred this season will be simply because of lack of talent, and not lack of coaching. That might not seem like much, but it's significant. Coaches are finally giving this team an opportunity to win, even if they're outmanned.
Gerdeman sees alll four of our remaining games as being both winnable and losable. He sees both outcomes being just as likely as the other.
Maybe the most important thing is what Gerdeman doesn't say explicitly in his column. The clear implication is that when Michigan eventually has the same talent level as Ohio (and probably the rest of the B1G,) our coaching will give us enough of an advantage to win. To say Gerdeman is scared would be to read too much into his comments. But Michigan's coaching staff, particularly the defense, comes in for high praise.
Here is one final quote, regarding the strength our defense is becoming, and what that means for Michigan - Ohio at the end of the season:
The most you can ask from this defense is relentless effort, and that seems to be what the bulk of them are best at. That doesn't lead to plays always being made, but it does lead to key plays being made at key times, and most of the time that's all you need.
In fact, it's that ability to make the big play when it's absolutely necessary that has me baffled on whom to pick when the Buckeyes head to Ann Arbor in four weeks.
To me, a close game favors Michigan because of their ability to pull a play out of nowhere on defense. That tendency will only be multiplied by the fact that the game is in the Big House.
Go to the link, and give credit to Gerdeman. You won't regret the read.
So the best game in the Noon timeslot is Michigan 15 v. Iowa, which wins by default because it is the only game involving a ranked team on the road.
The 3:30 timeslot may even be worse, with Stanford 4 v. Oregon State as the ranked team on the road edging out Texas A&M v. Oklahoma 6 in a game with likely no BCS implications.
I believe the main reason this happened is ESPN is mad at CBS for moving the LSU v. Bama game to the 8:00 timeslot, so they decided to stick South Carolina 9 v. Arkansas 7 at 7:15 and KSU 14 v. OKST 3 at 8:00 to in a probably fruitless attempt to siphon off viewers from the most touted college football game this season.
Just another reason to hate ESPN in case you need to add to the list.