this week in unintentionally grim-sounding recruiting headlines
HD mp4 and DVD posted.
Link to the DVD:
Might as well start the search early. Myp2p, justin.tv, and channelsurfing.net aren't listing the game yet. Anyone else find a feed for it?
BTN.com isn't streaming another men's game for a while. I wish they did like ESPN and streamed all of their games.
So we won. Wasn't the prettiest victory, but we won. In a year like this, I'll gladly take it. But one thing became painfully obvious during yesterday's game-- the hardest thing to deal with this year is not that the streak is over. It's not that the 8th loss is looming like that 'men's health exam' I'll soon be needing for the first time in my life. It's not that on New Year's Day I'll have to be sitting at some family member's house wishing it was ME yelling at my team for sucking it up in beautiful weather. It's not even Stevie Brown. Clearly, the worst part about this 2-7, and now 3-7 season is...
Pam Ward. Or as I'll refer to hereafter as PAM FREAKIN' WARD.
Yes, the worst part about being this bad is that PAM FREAKIN' WARD calls your game. I'm not positive here,
but from what I can remember not since 2005 have we had to endure the
utter pain and humiliation of having this CLUELESS talking zombie
rattle off for approximately four quarters. She is SOOO bad it makes
me want to write Paul Maguire a letter and invite him back to the Big
House!! It's like they took some homeless guy off the street in downtown Cairo, gave him a microphone and a bad photocopy of the 1996 Sega Madden instruction book and put him on national TV! You can say what you want about breaking down gender barriers, but for the love of American football, I can throw my grandmother in front of the TV and she'll at least have something to say for the next three hours! Pam Ward is like third rate dental work-- when you can't get anything else you're forced to take her or suffer. And dammit we love our Wolverines, so we swallowed our pride and took what ESPN forced upon us. I mean really, where do we start?
1. How many times does the average
TV viewer need to be told WHAT COLORS THE TEAMS ARE WEARING??? If, by
the fourth quarter you don't realize that the Wolverines are wearing
white and the Gophers are wearing maroon, then you probably want to
look into specialized TV broadcasting for the visually impaired.....
How many times did we need to hear about the 'HOOK and LATERAL' play
that Purdue used to ice the game last week? Well, the first six or
seven would have been fine for me, but PAM FREAKIN' WARD made sure to point it out at least 45 to 48 times depending on whether or not you had turned down the TV volume to single digit levels by the fourth quarter.
3. It's a shame Eric Decker couldn't play (hats off to Trent, of course) after paid her so much money to SAY THE GUY'S NAME EVERY SIX SECONDS for THREE HOURS. I think there were more overall shots of Decker's sunflower seed exploits than actual field-of-play coverage, and I'm sure the camera men were just following the lead of PAM FREAKIN' WARD.
4. You would think that if someone were going to put you in front of a national TV audience, you'd at least be willing to do a little homework on the teams so you don't come off like a total insult to the game. Especially if you're trying to justify the whole gender barrier/bias thing. PAM FREAKIN' WARD must have been too busy on Friday watching Days of Our Lives or the WNBA to actually take a glance at our roster. I think I heard her call Calvin Bell's name a few times here and there. Tackle by David Harris. Touchdown run by Marquise Walker. Of course I'm just making these up, but she deserves it. Try announcing Martavious... try learning that McGuffie is white and on the sideline. Sheesh.
5. Please, could you spend a little more time describing the action ON THE FIELD than READING THE SCOREBOARD?? If I wanted to hear the score every 2nd down, I'd just look up to the top of the screen. All she really does is rattle off stats and numbers that are ALREADY AVAILABLE to the viewer. And why??? Because she obviously, and regrettably, has NOTHING TO ADD. NOTHING TO OFFER. Nothing about when she was quarterback at Purdue in 1961. Nothing about when she was coach at Jersey City State. Nothing even remotely to offer other than what the above-average football watching American can gather on his or her own. Nothing.
So we're stuck with this... at least until we start winning big and Brad Nessler and the rest start getting sent back to Ann Arbor. Hell, I'll even be satisfied with CHRIS FREAKIN' SPIELMAN at this point. One thing I kept thinking about on Saturday-- could you imagine what it's like to be stuck with this poop all the time??? How utterly toxic it must be for Northwestern fans to be told that their team is wearing purple 376 times a week?? How maniacally unfair it must be for Hoosier fans to be told it is 3rd and 11 because the line of scrimmage is eleven yards up the field?? Damn, at that point bring on the Big 10 network!
Long story short-- let's hope our boys turn it around next year, if only for more adequate playcalling!!!! I mean REALLY, ESPN--
AMERICA DESERVES BETTER THAN PAM FREAKIN' WARD.
That is all. God Bless America. GO BLUE.
Michigan Now Just an Average Program
By DREW SHARP • FREE PRESS COLUMNIST • October 18, 2012
When Michigan and Michigan State face off this Saturday in Ann Arbor, it will be a meeting of two programs going in opposite directions.
While Mark Dantonio has established consistency and attitude in leading the Spartans to a 4-1 start, the sheen on Rich Rodriguez's back-to-back Big Ten championships and 2011 National Championship appearance has obviously worn off.
The sounding bell for Michigan's trip back to mediocrity was last week's debacle at Indiana, which dropped the Wolverines to 3-2 and 1-1 in the Big Ten this year.
That the legendary Wolverine program could fall to the perennial bottom-dweller of the Big Ten is anathema in Ann Arbor.
This latest loss may be the worst in Michigan's history. Appalachian State, which has won every NCAA Division I Football Championship since, was a good team that snuck up on them, while Toledo in 2008 could be chalked up to the inevitable attrition of instituting a brand new offense. Indiana, however, was a clear sign that the NCAA has caught up -- and passed by -- Rich Rodriguez's spread offense.
The Hoosiers knew everything the Wolverines were going to do before they did it. They pounced on every football. They showed up intense and ready to play, something that cannot be said for Rodriguez's squad.
Even when the Rich-Rod era was reaching its apex -- before Nick Saban's Crimson Tide proved in Miami that high-tech SEC football is far superior to the cavemen of the Big Ten -- the end of the Spread Option was in sight, as Ohio State limited Michigan's vaunted running game to just 86 yards.
The losses this year are a reflection of a team falling apart. We've heard grumblings from players about disjointed leadership in the locker room. Their motivation has been called to question. The resounding victory over an overrated Notre Dame team is a forgotten memory. This was the real Michigan, failing epically when not showing off for a national audience.
Now, with Superman Sam McGuffie and Tate Forcier playing in the NFL, Michigan has struggled to find offensive life against real defenses. And Rodriguez has taken the heat for this latest embarrassment, with many Michigan faithful ready to move on without him. Following the loss this year to Indiana, the website www.firerichrodriguez.com reported a record number of hits.
Coaches, it seems, have a short shelf life in today's win-now environment.
In that paradigm, MSU's Dantonio, who took over the program way back in 2006, is the exception. Dantonio, who won a national championship at Ohio State in 2002 (something Rich Rodriguez has never accomplished), has stuck around by preferring substance to flash. Under his direction, Michigan State has focused on building its foundations with a power running attack and a tough, in-your-face defense, and with a win in the Big House Saturday, could emerge as the new power in the state.
Michigan State has had a decided edge in the battle for in-state recruiting in recent years, holding a 3-to-1 advantage in Top 20 in-state talent. Dantonio has eschewed the exotic speed demons of Florida that Rodriguez favors, instead choosing to build his team by establishing strong relationships with in-state coaches. The dividends of this long-term investment are now paying off, starting with State's home-grown 'lighting' and 'thunder' tailback duo of Edwin Baker and Austin White. This week, they hauled in yet another highly regarded athlete, gathering a commitment from the Free Press' No. 13 in-state recruit, linebacker Damien Hirst of Birmingham Seaholm.
The recruting differential tells the story: in-state high schoolers are already looking at Michigan State before Michigan even extends an offer.
It starts Saturday. If the Spartans can roll into Ann Arbor and dispatch Rodriguez's flailing Wolverines, it could signal the beginning of the end of Michigan dominance in this state, and a return to the days of Biggie Munn and Duffy Daugherty, when Spartans dominated the rivalry and competed every year for the national title.
MORE DREW SHARP COLUMNS:
>Red Wings' Season Over Before It Began
>Leyland Should Take Blame for 2nd World Series Disappointment
>Time for Wings to cut ties with Datsyuk, Zetterberg and rebuild
>Young Pistons Looking to get Back to Playoffs
>Lions Should Bench Stanton, Look to Future
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....Juice Williams ?!?!
26 of 41 attempts with five TDs and a pick on the first game of the season.
The Mizzou game was seriously impressive. Chad Henne never threw for as many yards as Williams did Saturday night, 451. He's grown up...the Mizzou secondary kind of sucks, but still, he gave a performance worth of Troy Smith.
Who else in the Big 10 is even close? Maybe the Indiana QB, and whoever is under center for Northwestern these days...