spoiler alert: i linked this
Moving The Game
**Note: Sorry if some of this is redundant with any other posts/diaries. I'm short on time**
I was able to attend the Alumni Association Tailgate before the Michigan-ND game today (great game)! AD Brandon did a Q&A session at it. I thought I'd pass on a few of his thoughts/answers. Nothing to earth shattering, but probably of interest to at least a few folks. I'm trying to provide the answers as quotes, but this was transcribed on my phone as he was talking, so it's bound to contain some paraphrasing.
From his opening remarks:
Sorry this isn't really 'original' from the perspective of me creating it, but it seemed kind of long to put in a Board.
Dear President Coleman and AD Brandon,
I first want to commend both of you, and former AD Martin, on the wonderful job with the Michigan Stadium renovations. I have taken the several opportunities presented to the public to tour the new facilities and am very excited about them. This is a change that I am glad to observe and be a part of for this coming football season.
While change can often be good, changing traditions is often not. In particular, changing the tradition of U-M and OSU playing in the last regular season game (since 1935!) is a change that would be exceedingly bad, in my opinion. While I understand the need for sufficient funding of athletics, so that the general funds can be focused on maintaining our excellent academics, I hope that you do not accept a change of tradition of this magnitude because of money. This seems to me to be tantamount to allowing advertising or the sale of alcohol in Michigan Stadium.
Beyond the fact that moving The Game is bad for tradition, it is also very bad for the experience of The Game. No longer will the rest of the games during the regular season feel like preparation for The Game. No longer will we have the excitement of deciding a conference (or division once we've moved to a divisional format) champion based on the results of this game. No longer will we have the opportunity to redeem a 3 or 4 loss season by beating OSU in the final game of the season. No longer will we have an association of The Game with mid/late November, an association as ingrained in many of us fans as Christmas being on Dec 25 or Memorial day being on the last Monday of May. No longer will we be able to say that we participated in a tradition that started before we were born, before WWII. No longer would we be able to say that we are participating in a tradition that we expect to continue with our grandchildren, long after we've passed on.
There is so much to lose by moving The Game, but so little to gain beyond a few more dollars.
Please, please fight to keep The Game when it is.
Clearly, I've taken many points from others who have posted about this around these parts.
About 5 minutes ago I got this response:
Thanks for your point of view...
We are working hard to come up with the best solution to a number of competing interests. There are 12 Teams... 12 A.D.'s... a building full of Conference Officials in Chicago....and 12 Presidents who are all working on these issues. And, we all have our own traditions and desires regarding the way our expanded conference should be structured and scheduled for football. Contrary to your assertion, the scheduling dilemmas we are attempting to work through have nothing to do with money. It would be easier if they were!
To us, the Michigan - OSU game is the most important thing in our world! I know....I was on the team during four of the greatest battles we have ever had! However, there are other Universities and teams in our conference with their own needs and priorities.
I will do the best I can to maintain as many of our traditions as possible... I understand their importance.
Besides the fact that I got this response so quickly (which makes me wonder if it is a canned response, though it does seem to respond to my specific email points), I thought it was noteworthy because A) he states that this is not about money but about balancing the desires of 12 different schools and B) he does seem to state a desire to maintain the tradition of The Game (though he certainly left himself an out).
Sorry about the length and sorry if this is redundant with other posts. I was just hoping to pass on information others might find useful.
Alright, look. Nobody wants the game moved. Hopefully it won't be. There's no reason to expect that it will. Right now it's just talk about what COULD happen. But all this anti DB rhetoric is just stupid.
David Brandon has two options right now. One, fruitlessly fight and state that any thought of moving the game is sacrilige, or be open, accepting, and try to galvanize the fanbase against division when and if the time comes. If he fights this idea tooth and nail, then the results within the fanbase when and if it does happen will be unaccepting at best. However, if he takes a fore-thinking position, attempting to have an even hand and lead us into an uncertain time and place, as he has already been doing with other issues, then it will provide a rally point for the rest of us. Unpopular now, but ultimately freeing, and potentially cathartic before the fact, should i t come to pass.
I think we should all support him for being willing to take the unpopular, but ultimately most helpful stance.