"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."
Okay, inspired by Breaking B1G, here's the Big Ten as Game of Thrones characters. A note on spoilers: These comparisons may contain info from the TV series through the most recent episode, but not through future events contained in the books. Enjoy - and debate and correct me below! With so many GoT characters, I had to leave many great ones out, so I'd love to hear yours!
Jon Snow, one of the few true heroes we can root for in Game of Thrones. He comes from a historic family that has fallen on hard times. While Jon’s talents seem to be spoiled away for scoffers on The Wall, you know it is only a matter of time before he reclaims the Stark name as one to be reckoned with.
Tywin Lannister, basically a giant dick. But he’s a smart one and totally okay with skirting whatever rules, customs or traditions needed in order to secure the legacy of the Lannister name. Mastermind a massacre at a wedding? Sure. Pit your sons against each other so you can get what you want? Of course. You hated his bastard grandson because he was pure evil, but you hate Tywin not because of his inherent evil, but because he’s willing to use his superior intellect in evil ways.
Rickon, little brother of Jon Snow.
Danaerys Targaryean. From a line of past kings, Dany now hopes to reclaim what was once her family’s. Things were starting to look good for a while – a young, up and coming warrior jumped on board and they did some damage, taking hold of several cities. However, before Dany could set sail for her ultimate prize, that young up and comer left to go settle restlessness in previously conquered cities. So now Dany sits in Mereen. And rules. She’s the biggest fish in Slaver’s Bay, but she still is a long way off from once again challenging the other powers.
Mance Rayder, king of the land of waste and nothingness north of the wall. Mance lives in a land that has little as far as entertainment, culture or civilization in general, really. Yet, he is King in that vast waste and
corn farmers tribes north of the wall follow him, to hopeful glory. Mance has yet to take total power, but it would be foolish to ignore him.
Mace Tyrell is kinda just around. He’s a big deal because he holds the cards to Highgarden, but really everyone knows that other people are running the show. He does what can to bolster the Tyrell name, attaching his daughter to the soon-to-be-king de jour. But in the end, he’s not the prize his daughter is. He doesn’t have the wits his mother-in-law does, nor the youth and strength of his other prized child. He just exists out of necessity.
Hot Pie is a jovial young lad that basically stays out of the fray of all the major players. Historically, Hot Pie had some powerful allies, but decided to stay on the sidelines and avoid the troubles of warfare. Hot Pie does cook in a fancy new restaurant now and occasionally provides some intrigue.
Selyse Baratheon is Stannis’ wife and the queen of Dragonstone. Despite this, Stannis has a mistress who has given him a son… of sorts. Selyse doesn’t come out and say it, but she looks at Melisandre as quite the rival. The problem is nobody cares enough about Selyse to consider her a rival.
Poddrick isn’t crucial to anything, really. But he’s smart and he works hard, despite not having a famous name or pedigree. And he always seem to be good for some surprises here and there. Plus, rumor is that Pod has quite a big, err... drum.
Stannis Baratheon is unwilling to bend to any new ways. Stannis has the rightful claim to the throne but .the problem is nobody cares. Stannis is uncharismatic, cold, grey, bland and a punt-a-saur. Everyone recognizes that he always could be a threat, but also quickly dismiss him as a relic of the past.
Tyrion Lannister. Tyrion is the smartest player in the game. Unlike the other major powers who rely on brawn, speed, and recruiting, Tyrion plays the game by outwitting his opponents. While that allows him to play with the big boys, his disadvantage is cripples his potential in the Game.
Sansa Stark Pretty to look at, important because of her mere existance, but fairly inconsequential
Walder Frey. Walder Frey was originally aligned with the Starks and the North. However, sensing an opportunity for a payday, Walder turned coat and aligned with the Lannisters. Walder Frey’s house gains a bit of prestige in the process, but everyone still considers them a house of little influence and power.
Sporting News' Steve Greenberg ranked the coaches of the B1G and Hoke came in at 4th place. Somewhat of a shock considering last season he was coach of the year for the B1G and in the running for National Coach of the Year. Ahead of him are:
1. Urban Meyer
2. Bret Bielema
3. Mark Dantonio
While those are the 4 best coaches in the B1G, I think the order is interchangable and would have thought Hoke would have gotten more credit for turning a 7-6 team into an 11-2 BCS Champ with players that were recruited to run a spread. Think about that... even with all the talented Michigan teams we have had, we only had 1 BCS victory and Hoke matched that in his first season. Granted, most of our losses were against a talented USC team in their back yard.
The rest of the order for those interested is:
5. Kirk Ferentz
6. Bo Pelini
7. Pat Fitzgerald
8. Bill O'Brien
9. Jerry Kill
10. Tim Beckman
11. Danny Hope
12. Kevin Wilson
Of course, over at annarbor.com, Hoke leads with 70% of the votes, followed by Dantonio(15%), Meyer(8%), Bielema(5%), Other(2%). What are your thoughts and non-homerish picks?
Per ESPN, a brief excerpt:
Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio has received a new contract designed to keep him a "Spartan for life."
The new deal maintains a five-year rollover clause for Dantonio, who is in his fifth year as coach and last season guided Michigan State to a team-record 11 victories and a share of the Big Ten title for the first time in 20 years. Dantonio's base salary increases from $618,000 to $650,000, and his new contract includes performance incentives such as a $100,000 bonus for winning the Big Ten championship game.
Ann Arbor.com reporting:
THJ made the team. Pretty solid work right there. The team leaves for Europe on Friday. Other B10 teams had players trying out too. Here's the update:
Michigan sophomore-to-be Tim Hardaway Jr. made the roster for the 2011 USA U19 World Championship team, USA Basketball announced today. . . . Michigan State's Keith Appling and Illinois' Meyers Leonard are currently part of the 13-member roster. Iowa's Melsahn Basabe was among the cuts. The team will cut one more player before leaving for Europe. CBSSports.com's Jeff Goodman is reporting that the last roster spot will go to Appling or Villanova's James Bell.
Alright... I've read enough of these posts and responses about the Big Ten logo and I was actually writing all of this as a response to the "Reconsider Division Names" thread when I finally decided to bump it into its own post. I'm not trying to come off as some logo elitist, a creative snoot or some kind of uppity know-it-all. It's just that there's several enormous parts of the iceberg regarding the creative process, decision-making, and ultimate implemenation of a big-time corporate logo that many of you aren't aware of, and so I'm trying to enlighten some people.
Personally, I'll own up and give you my own opinion of the official Big Ten logo at the end of this post.
In the meantime, it's no secret that most of the blog hates and loathes this thing like it came from Columbus. And that's awesome-- everyone has the right to respond to it however they'd like. BUT what's bothering me is that everyone, including Brian, is suggesting that we just have a contest and the people will fix what the king's court could not. And, my whole plumbing analogy notwithstanding, some of you are even suggesting that the Big Ten will save so much money by not having to hire some snooty art company type thing.
I couldn't disagree with you more. They'd still have to spend almost the same amount of money to get a design firm to adapt a 'contest winner' into a working branding concept and final production suite. Multi-venue solutions (line art, grayscale, full color, spot color), vector and raster images, RGB vs. CMYK files-- all of these things need to be prepared so that the logo can successfully depart for file management and implementation.
Let's say that Jim Delany saw the shield logo on our blog -- TScherne or Block M or whoever did it-- and decided that was the one he was going to run with. What would really happen? Chances are they'd write a little check and have the designer sign off ownership of the design about twenty times. THEN they'd go back to Pentagram or another design firm, and they'd essentially recreate it in vector format, tweaking it slightly to maximize production and reproduction. Then they'd create countless format options for the logo, some for web, some for print, some for line art solutions like one-color tees, etc. etc. And the work doesn't end there.
Perhaps very few of you realize that the design firm is also responsible for the production and publication of a proper creative brief, design manual, or reproduction requirement publication. Basically it's a manual that follows the logo wherever it goes throughout its shelf life, telling every prepress artist or web developer how it should, and more importantly, how it cannot be used. For example, the UM sports department probably issued a new brief last year telling everyone NOT to use the block M with 'MICHIGAN' through the middle, and not to use the one with the blue stroke, and instead use only the single color block M. It might also say you cannot add to the mark, rotate the mark, use different typography for the mark, etc etc. All of this has to be prepared, developed, and considered so that no handling or manipulation of the logo is open to interpretation. Many of these documents are small, but several can be up to 40-50 pages. I've worked with Bucknell's and few others, and have seen countless more. It's a very legitimate and binding document.
In other words, you just don't draw up a logo and send it in. Even if it's a contest winner, you're not saving any money, and chances are you're only setting yourself up for future complications. Let the experts do their job, man.
NOW, if you hate the logo, that's another thing-- but ultimately Delany and the Big Ten are responsible for choosing and approving that solution, not the design company. I'd bet Pentagram created at least a dozen other solutions that Delany and company passed over. This is not something that was just whipped up on a napkin, my friends.
If you think the design firm could have done better, chances are they did. It just wasn't chosen.
I don't think it's that bad. Seriously.
But I also think it's no home run. Yes, the Pac10's logo is so much sweeter. The new logo is to the point, the typography is relatively clean and is also current without being too trendy. I also think the whole B10 shortened mark could probably catch on, if it's handled the right way. Still, they could've done a much better job in promoting the personality and character of what we consider GGRRRRR BIG TEN FOOTBALL by choosing the right typeface. Typefaces are like voices-- they can all say the same words and yet the meanings can become completely different.
What I really dislike is the color. That icy blue doesn't have enough contrast to really pop off a white background, and on a black background it'll probably be unappealing in a Carolina Panthers kinda way. I also don't like how they did the whole black "B" with the blue "10" concept-- looks very bleh, and too NFL on FOX. I'd have probably done something that combines current with tradition, but that may not have been what the Big Ten as an organization asked for. We'll never know what the customer requested prior to design.
As far as contests and my uppity opinions, etc., someone has already asked me 'hey why don't you whip something up?' I will not. And I'm not ripping on anyone who had the scrotum to work something up and post it here on mgoblog-- more power to all of you and I'm certainly willing to recognize some strong efforts. If someone were to commission me to create a logo then perhaps I might-- but technically none of you have the right to hire me to create a Big Ten logo-- that would be a conflict of ownership with the Big Ten. So yes, I have some ideas, but until the miraculous day that I get a call from Jim Delany asking me to knock something out, I'm going to keep my concepts to myself.
Go Blue and Merry Christmas everybody.
My college coaching career included stints at a future PAC10 school, in the Big Ten, and in the Big 8. I won a national championship with a legendary quarterback. I won 70% of my bowl games. One of my former assistants greatly influenced where a future NFL Hall-of-Famer would spend his pro career.
During an blowout victory in the late '60s against my team's most hated rival, the opposing coach flashed me the peace sign, apparently in hopes I'd call off the dogs. In response, I returned half of it. (Now that's a rivalry!)
And a play during a game I coached against Michigan resulted in a rule change the next year that is still in place.
Who am I?