Not a whole lot of new ground here, but Adam Rittenberg gets an interview with David Brandon about "branding" and the Michigan athletic department.
Money quote for me:
People want Michigan to be on the national stage. They want us to be innovative. They want us to embrace our traditions -- and I do, I'm a part of that tradition -- but I also believe there's a lot of people that want us to be fresh and to be competitive, not just on the field through performance but also in the way we present our program to the nation.
So I constantly peruse MDen and other sites that sell Michigan gear for new cool stuff. However, after the recent post regarding MDen new site design up; 2011 gear designs revealed, and my subsequent viewing of the MDen site, I am thoroughly disappointed in Dave Brandon's marketing efforts.
Michigan, and in particular the block M, is an invaluable trademark, and DB is pissing it away. The silly stitched block M on the ND game jerseys looks like a total fad. However, the worse sin is the fact that the vintage circle block M in the yellow circle on so many decent looking shirts, which IMO do look cool, is totally overshadowed by the equally large Adidas logo. That's so disappointing on Dave's part.
That cool vintage circle block M logo should not be juxtaposed a massive corporate logo. M should have paid for that design outright and simply marketed it on its own. It's not like anyone goes to the Adidas website for M gear. Why do we need that logo plastered all over our sweet shirts? I for one refuse to buy anything with corporate logos so prominently displayed upon them.
Let me start off by saying, I’m not that old. I’m 24 (it feels really old compared to 2 years ago when I was graduating). Some of you might read the title and think “Get Off My Lawn” but that’s not what I’m going for. The more and more I’ve thought about the Notre Dame game this year, the more upset I get. I’ve got tickets, I’m going, I’ll love it… but it won’t feel like Michigan Football. I don’t care at all if we have a Fullback, or play a 4-3, that’s not what I mean. What I mean is the Game-day Experience. Yes, this will be the first night game, yes everyone else has night games, and yes, Prime Time exposure, etc. etc. this really seems like a net positive. But part of me thinks that with the whole thing we’ve sold out. I’m a 3rd Generation Michigan Grad, and I love that when I went to games from 2005-2009, it started just like when my mom and dad when to games in the late 70s, and when my grandparents went in the late 40s/early 50s. The Marching Band formed their block M,
the Fanfare M, they played the Victors, the team came out the Tunnel, and they looked like this:
- is that Henne? Devin? Leach?
- is that Arthur Walker, Paul Seymour, Jon Jansen, Jake Long, or Lewan?
Their seats looked like this:
Now, I can’t help but feel that we’re all of a sudden every other team in college football. We’ve got skyboxes (granted, the construction ended up looking great, and I’ve taken the tour, and they’re amazing). We’ve got Lights. We’ve got Special K and we’ve got (allegedly) Maize alternate/throwbacky/cash-grab Jerseys.
So, all the things that I (we?) have claimed to hate throughout the past few seasons we now embody.
Michigan will Take the Field and it will be OMG MAIZE JERZEYS! I CAN BUY JERZEYS?
After Michigan takes the field “I Got a Feelin’“ I know what Special K will play (I feel like every time they went to commercial in this game the damn Black Eyed Peas song played, I know that the movie has AC/DC) - Dunno if embedding is working, but Iowa 2009, when Iowa took the field: (link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TsHF31w8-sU&feature=related)
The Fatcats in their Skyboxes will see the numbers, the ratings, the jersey sales and think that this was successful. And what’s next? Our old scoreboards looked like this
Will our new ones look like this?
Again, I’m excited for the night game, I’m going, I’ll love it, and I hope Denard gets 503 yards and we beat ND 77-0 (with at least 1 Mike Martin Pick 6). But part of me really likes that we’re (we were?) different. I hope to really enjoy the Night Game, but come November, on a Gray Saturday afternoon I’ll bundle up, trudge through snow and slush to my seat which looks like this
to see Michigan play in The Game, hoping the sun peeks through the clouds, and our team will look like this:
And the band will play the Victors and it’ll just feel… right
Amazing story posted to Dave Brandon's blog: softball coach Carol Hutchins and assistants give recruit's father CPR and use an AED when he suffers a heart attack. The man was taken to UM hospital and survived.
Nice save, coach.http://www.mgoblue.com/sports/brandon/spec-rel/051411aaa.html
Rich Rod spoke in depth with Dennis Dodd of CBS. (Link: http://www.cbssports.com/collegefootball/story/14640415/rich-rod-we-thought-it-was-just-getting-ready-to-take-off?ttag=gen10_on_all_fb_na_txt_0001)
Most of the things are stuff we've heard him say before..."we were almost there; lots of drama; took longer than I expected." Something new that I hadn't heard him say was a critique of Dave Brandon and his position to make the decision that he made:
"Were you treated fairly by Dave Brandon?
Rodriguez:"To say publicly how I was treated would be self-serving. Everybody says three years is enough time. If you don't know all the factors maybe you make that conclusion. If you're here in the middle of this for three years fighting all the battles. ... We'd like to be able to finish the job. I can't sit here a month later and say this and that should have happened.
"What I am going to do to make sure the next job I get, we win the national championship and everybody is pulling in the right direction. Dave's been on the job -- what? -- nine months? He knows the business world. I did the best I could to tell him or show him what was going on in the football program. I tried to show him as best I could. He wasn't involved in athletics [before getting to Michigan]. I've been a head coach in Division I for 10 years and coaching for 25. I know college football."
(Note: Brandon played defensive end under Bo Schembechler at Michigan. He is also a former Michigan regent. Brandon came to the school after serving as Domino's Pizza CEO.)
That's an interesting place to needle Brandon on. I don't think it's fair to say he "wasn't involved in athletics." As Dodd points out in his note, he did play for Michigan and as a Regent from 1998-2006 he undoubtedly was involved in athletics at least little bit. Seems like sour grapes to me.
Yeah, I know, we have our coach, let's move on. I say no. UM isn't a private school or the CIA. The alumni, students and Michigan taxpayers have a right to know how Brandon's so-called "process" worked, what happened with Harbaugh and Miles and when Hoke was really offered. There was a lot of reporting during what I refer to as "Hell Week" for Michigan fans after the bowl game that contradicts Brandon's public statements. Michigan should having a winning team, but it should be about integrity too. That starts from the top down. Brandon has displayed nothing but the utmost arrogance, condescension and lack of integrity. Who in the media is going to take him to task? Isn't the purpose of journalism to promote transparency and accountability?