alternate headline: man does job
Michigan Softball Opens Season with 15-3 (5 inning) Win over South Carolina; Sierra Romero Off to Hot Start
Michigan Softball smoked South Carolina 15-3.
1st Inning: Walk
2nd Inning: RBI Double
3rd Inning: RBI Single
4th Inning: Grand Slam
*Game 2 Romero Tracker*
1st Inning: Walk
2nd Inning: Single
3rd Inning: Fielders Choice grounder to 3rd base
Breaking: Purdue announces that Athletic Director Morgan Burke plans to retire in July 2017.— Dave Bangert (@davebangert) February 11, 2016
(If he's not forced out first)
But not before signing Darrell Hazzell to an 8 year, 24 million dollar extension. (I made that up).
Seriously though, Morgan Burke was a key figure in upgrading the basketball/football facilities at Purdue, hopefully the next guy can get someone like Joe Tiller who can at least make it 4-5 games into the season pretending to be a good team.
[Bumped (and added some photos) because it's good and so is our softball team. --Seth]
Sprinkle the cheese
It’s hard to put the experience of Michigan’s 2015 softball season into words. It was totally unique in so many ways. Michigan fans were desperate for something to go right after hockey, basketball, and football all came up well short of pre-season expectations. Jim Harbaugh was making headlines, but concrete results were still months away, and the Michigan community was still convalescing from its long bout of Brandonitis. It was the perfect time for niche sport to make a bid for mainstream status, as fans needed something, anything to go right, to make things feel like Michigan again.
Into this void stepped a group of twenty young women, swinging bats and making pizza as they blasted their way through the country and the Big Ten, into the record books and Maize and Blue hearts nationwide. The team combined absurd offensive production and strong pitching with an unmatched rootability factor. Whether on TV or in person, this team was fun. When Lauren Haeger’s Gators bounced them in the last game of the season, it felt like an injustice, just like Trey Burke missing out on his crown or the Legend of Shawn Hunwick falling short against Minnesota-Duluth.
The difference between those crimes and this one, however, is that Michigan has a chance to put things right. Almost everyone is back from the 2015 squad, and there’s no question that they’ve been working harder than ever all offseason to earn what was denied them a year ago. It’s a new year with fresh faces and stiff competition, but this is a team on a mission. Below, we’ll break down roster changes, offense and defense, and the opposition Michigan will face in the season ahead. 2016 isn’t going to be 2015 all over again, and Hutch and her crew are smart enough not to try to make it that. It just might be a little bit better.
[Hit THE JUMP to see what that team lost and what to expect from this one]
Flosoftball web-video interview with Coach Hutch
She mentions pitchers being banged up, but rest of team anxious to get going. Also some discussion of her development of the program from the ground up. I love the Team 38 pizza paddle behind her.
"Only 24 women in the universe get to wear Michigan Softball"
Michigan is lucky to have her.
What do you do the day after the Super Bowl in San Francisco if you are Jim Harbaugh? Go to Willie Mays' house to hang out, of course.
The Michigan coach, who spent plenty of time in Northern California with the Niners and Stanford, checked in on the "Say Hey Kid" on Monday because Harbaugh is friends with every famous person on the planet, it seems.
Harbaugh does nothing halfway, so he showed up in a Mays jersey and snapped a picture with a bat in his hands. The best part of the pic isn't Harbaugh dressed up, it's the fact that Willie Mays is such a baller that he has a leather recliner with "Say Hey" stitched into the back of it, so you know whose chair that is.
Source: CBSSports.com, 2/8/2016, Robby Kalland
Hutch on cranking the pitching machines up to eleven during a recent practice:
It’s not about making them feel good every day. It’s about how they respond because when the game comes, nobody feels good unless things go your way. We try to make practice harder than the game. I don’t know if we accomplished it. I have no idea. I’ll find out.
All American LF Kelly Christner on the attitude around practice:
Basically every practice, she would be like, ‘You guys have not earned one thing yet,’ Really making us focus on going out every single game no matter who we’re playing, no matter what the situation is, if we’re winning or losing, just really going 100 percent constantly. That’s helped us.
There's some actual talk about progression at the catcher spot and on pitching. Softball opens Friday morning against Virginia Tech in Tampa and plays #1 Florida the next morning.
They may not have an actual accomplishment yet, but expectations cannot get any higher for 2016, and for good reason.