"The face of the operation is Briatore (referred to exclusively in the film by his colleagues and angry, chanting detractors as "Flavio"), an anthropomorphic radish who spends most of his time at QPR plotting to fire all of the managers."
At press time, Harbaugh had sent Michigan’s athletic department an envelope containing a heavily annotated seating chart, a list of the 63,000 seat views he had found unsatisfactory, and a glowing 70-page report on section 25, row 12, seat 9, which he claimed is “exactly what the great sport of football is all about.”
Halloween has been unkind to the Wolverines in recent years. In '08 Michigan's heretofore okay secondary dressed up like a bad 3-3-5 and handed out open out routes to Purdue like candy. In 2009 it was the House of Haunted Dong-Punching that in retrospect marked the turning point in the Rodriguez experiment. Last year M came out of a bye having swapped out Cam Gordon for a 2-star true freshman, and the barest hope of defensive competency for none.
Perhaps such horrors are the reason our ancestors celebrated All Hallow's Eve by huddling in their homes, carving pumpkins to look like possession receivers, and dressing up as professional wrestlers who teach toughness and point at things. It's a good night to curl up with your favorite book (909Dewey on Three and Out), calculate your chances of winning Pick Six (Jeff), catch a high school game (frerrnnur5 sees Jordan Payton play), or—a must read for Big Ten refs by Enjoy Life—learn the difference between a fumble and a backward pass.
The rest of you will be stepping away from your internets to pretend you have social lives. But there's no reason you have to leave your MGo-obsession at home until your screen saver of cjm, monuMental and Blue Indy wallpapers (this week's by the latter) takes over. In a weak (read: bye) week, this is the Diarist of the Week. Here's a few costume concepts inspired by this week's diaries; feel free to add yours in the comments:
1) RON ZOOK, WITH A DRY ERASE BOARD ON HIS BACK THAT PEOPLE CAN WRITE SCORES ON
Ron Zook won the eponymous Dumb Punt of the Week again in the Mathlete's Mid-Week Metrics. Now you too can be just as oblivious to the world around you. Just get an Illinois sweatshirt, a nice silver coif, and walk around kicking things when you shouldn't.
2) LITTLE ORPHAN ANNIE WITH A NEBRASKA 'N' ON YOUR SKIRT
You walk in singing "I think I'm gonna like it here," until you discover living with Daddy Warbucks is even more fraught with dangers than the poor orphanage you left (which Ms. Hannigan and her nefarious friends are meanwhile plotting to bring to ruin). Wisconsin ate the upset bug last week in Maize_in_Spartyland's Upset Watch. Don't count on 6-1 Nebraska making things right however, as they're 2-5 against the spread so far this year.
3) HOPLITE IN A PRISON UNIFORM
BlueSeoulcame away unimpressed with Spartan discipline. You can pay tribute by picking up an orange jumpsuit or striped uniform and a Spartan mask.
4) COUGARS AND A PACK OF TROJANS
In the Ugly Game of the Week, stubob gives you the games that'll have you changing the channel to Golden Girls, starting with the Troy Trojans of Troy (We're from Troy!) versus FIU.
5) A NEUTERED BULLDOG
Michigan beat Ferris State last night but Yesman2221's weekend series preview is still relevant through this evening.
LESLIE NIELSEN AS GERG, SETH ROGAN AS THE STUFFED ANIMAL
MGoJoe and friends have begun casting for Three & Out: The Movie, starring Russell Crowe as Rich Rodriguez, George Clooney as Dave Brandon, and Al Pacino as Dave Brandon's Pimp Hand. Hey, they made Moneyball into a feature so why not T&O? Skip Joe's picks and go right to the replies.
THE DECLINE AND FALL OF THE MIDWEST EMPIRE
PeterKlima asks rhetorically if the conference has entered its Dark Age. I guess the Carr and Cooper years, from the conquest of Penn State to the pagan revival of Alvarez, could be the period of the tetrarchy and late antiquity; who's Justinian, Jim Tressel? Is the Spread Offense Christianity? Is any part of this analogy mentioned in the thread itself? No, not really.
FACEPALM GUY IS THE ANTI-LLOYD BRADY
The photoshoppers came out in force this week. The guy who twice caught ESPN peeking for UTL fan reaction shots bought the O.P. a beer, and for his troubles got a photoshop thread. So far Facepalm Guy has appeared in a family Christmas film, signed the Declaration of Independence, was carried off the field after a Citrus Bowl victory over Florida, perched atop a 1930s Manhatten skyrise project, gave the nation the Nixonian Double-Peace from the door to Marine One, got himself tased by MLB security guards, understudied Johnny Depp, stuck his head in the ground, escaped the Death Star, won a bodybuilding contest, and rededicated Notre Dame stadium to his blessed works.
CASE STUDY SAYS BAD IDEA IS BAD IDEA
Minimum donations 1/5th of the cost DB is asking for next year have led Penn State to non-sellouts (thanks Murph). This is Penn State's 2011 home schedule versus Michigan's 2012 home schedule:
Penn State 2011
9/3 – Indiana St
9/8 - Air Force
9/10 - Alabama
9/15 - UMass
9/24 – Eastern Mich
10/13 - Illinois
10/8 – Iowa
10/20 - MSU
10/15 – Purdue
11/10 - Northwestern
10/29 – Illinois
11/17 - Iowa
11/12 – Nebraska
The Nittany Lions have two marquee games and another three non-terrible conference opponents versus Michigan's one and two or three. They asked their fans for a minimum of $100 (up to $1,000 for the best seats) to lock in their seats and now their stadium looks like Joe Louis Arena (packed house above, half-empty in the pricey section). Brandon is asking Michigan fans to fork up about the same as what emptied the Lions' den, but without the actual promise of getting a seat. Yeah, this is a completely terrible idea.
IT'S ALMOST 2012; DO YOU KNOW WHERE YOUR APR IS?
We got a moment of panic from myrtlebeachmaiz…[name gets too long] about whether that albatross of an 897 Academic Progress Rate from 2007-'08 will subject Michigan to the new Srsly APR is Srsly penalties. Brian will probably cover in the future but the short-short version is we're probably in the clear.
Some of the newer folks like Mr. Yostthink it's time to bring out THE FAQ again. If you hover your mouse over "About" and click on "FAQ" you can read all about the acronyms you don't know and the nicknames you've never heard of, like who exactly is Tacopants (who is sadly very much back on the team) and Manbearfreak (that one is so retired). If you can think of some other bits of acronyms or jargon that need to be added, mention them in Yost's post and I'll do a one-time update this weekend or something.