here's one vote for "John Beilein's head in a Futurama jar"
I'm sure we've all had those headaches that just won't go away. No, not how you feel about Sparty or the state of Ohio in general. I mean the real life ones, the ones that you can't shake. The ones that linger on for days. That's how Michigan fandom feels right now.
I hate to say it because I've been a Michigan fan since I knew what sports were. I went to U of M-Dearborn (couldn't afford Ann Arbor). I proudly watch every game, wear my gear out everywhere, live 15 minutes from the stadium, have been reading this blog for 4 years or so now, and tell everyone what my school is.
The endless drama, the non-stop CC, the media speculation, its all a constant nagging headache for me. Our program, our love, our TEAM, our passion is being drug through the mud again. We just went through this not even five years ago. Its painful even more this time than before.
When we first hired Rich Rodriguez and all that came with him I defended him to the ignorant. To those who wouldn't give him a chance. To those who knew nothing about him. To those who undoubtedly posted on many a message board with spittle filled monitors after screaming about him not being a "Michigan Man." I continued to defend him through 3-9. Through Toledo. Through the ended bowl streak. Through Sparty (three times). Through OSU (three times). Through 5-7 and now 7-5. It got so bad I gave my own father one rule every time I sat down with him to watch a Michigan game: Talk negative about Rich Rod and I'm gone. And I've had to leave in the middle of games full of anger and disappointment at my father to drive home to watch the games, alone. Headache.
Now there's nothing left to defend except hope. I want to defend, I want to fight, I want to see Rich Rodriguez come through and bring Michigan back to elite status...but I can't. I sit here with yet another headache. I see the board full of speculation, of the dreaded CC tag, of vitriol on both sides of the isle and it brings me to a headache. Once an ardent supporter and a fan through thick and thin I'm officially done with Rich Rodriguez.
I don't care what name our new coach has. I don't care what offense he runs. I don't care what defense he runs. I don't care if he brings in Johnny Chimpo and Jerry Giraffe to run the offense and defense. I just want to WIN. I want to strike fear in our opponents again. I want to DOMINATE.
I'm sure to most this comes off as my very own MAKE PLAYS moment and I don't care. I have to take a reprieve from this blog. I usually spend many hours here a week and check the main page and the board over and over scrawling for anything new. I can't do it right now. Every single CC and every single Harbaugh or Rich Rod or whatever is a giant headache. I want to ENJOY fandom again.
I'm young but my life is filled with great Michigan football memories. I want to feel that joy of watching Wheatley, my first favorite player, shred Washington. Of Biakabatuka shredding OSU. Of Grbac and Greise and Brady and Henson and Navarre (as frustrating as he was). Of Minnesota and the comeback. Of CWood at MSU. Of Braylon versus MSU. Of 97 versus everyone. I don't want my fandom to reside only in memories. That's what Notre Dame fans do. I want to MAKE memories. I wasn't fortunate enough to see a game in person until I was a Junior in high school. I've gone to more games in the past two years than the rest of my life combined because I can now afford to. The games are fun and there is no other experience like that of the Big House. But I want the whole experience to be fun again not just Saturday until halftime. I want the headache to go away.
There will always be heartbreak and pain and sadness in fandom. Without it we cannot truly appreciate the highs. Fandom is practical experience of the Tao Te Ching. But I've had more than I can stand of the bad for this week, this month, this season. I will NEVER stop being a fan because its just not in my blood. But I think this part is better if I just step away and come back when this week is over.
IIRC, the Detroit Lions got in a bit of trouble a few years back when they hired Mariuchi or Morningwheg or Marinelli...well...one of the "emms" anyway because Detroit did not interview a minority candidate. Something about "Millen wanting his guy and not taking a fair look at other candidates" or something along those lines.
- Does UM have to go through this process (I'm not saying it's a bad thing, btw) or is it strictly an NFL thing? Can Dave Brandon just hire whomever he wants without a committee or search or anything?
- How is it that this JH to UM thing is so quiet? Where are all the websites tracking airline flights (not a fan of this, btw) that may or may not be carrying UM interviewers or interviewees?
Also, if JH is not introduced as coach in the 'back half of the week' how badly does this reflect on Brandon? If there is no deal in place to replace RR with JH at this point, this is going to go from bad to worse in a heartbeat. Brandon has been talking about 'evaluation' for a while now. That has to be BS at this point and clearly a back up plan to JH bailing. However, after the bowl game, seems like the general feeling is that it's Harbaugh or bust at this point. No other coach will do. If the 'evaluation' has not been a cover up for a behind the scenes deal to hire JH after his bowl game tonight, UM football is seriously screwed, RR is hamstrung and Dave Brandon is responsible for at least this:
- Completely undermining his current coach (RR)
- The lack of focus in bowl preparations/game play due to coaching change
- General current and future recruiting fiascos (Zettel to PSU, Dee Hart decommit)
I understand concerns that transition would be rough, Denard might transfer (to say nothing of Tate), etc. But to argue that Stanford runs a straight "pro set" that is incompatible with the talent RR has coached up is not based in fact. The question though would be which coaches JH could bring with him if he winds up at Michigan, which will influence how much versatility will be walking through the door.
"Stanford’s offense has duped plenty of defenses this year with its ever-evolving creativity. The Cardinal might line up with one, two or three tight ends, seven or eight offensive linemen. Two backs or no back. They’ll use the Wildcat formation. They’ll run the option, the single wing. They’re a spread offense. A pistol offense. And they’re constantly trying to come up with the next scheme.
“We try to hit every decade since about the 1940s,” said associate head coach Greg Roman.
It’s an encyclopedia of schemes, shifts and formations, and it’s all on quarterback Andrew Luck's wristband -- all 350 plays. "
days until the Orange Bowl is over and Harbaugh comes home.
Per KFFL.com source:
So here it is, the highlight of my 6th grade winter vacation. Michigan recovered two fumbles and blocked a punt to set up three scores and spark an improbable 3rd quarter comeback. Jamie Morris (22 carries, 156 yards) and Mark Messner were named co-MVPs. Michigan was voted #2 in both final polls, Schembechler's highest finish in his career. It was almost enough to make me forget the 2 point loss at then #1 Iowa on a last second field goal that knocked Michigan out of MNC contention.