Well I'll go ahead and be your second follower.
Dear Diary Sends 'Em On Their Way
Here's people dressed in grad gowns dancing in the Diag to Rusted Root:
The cards at the end made me think it's an elaborate advertisement for the sponsor. But I have questions: did they use real grads? Did we go to blue gowns this year, or did they just figure we use Duke's tailor? All I can find out on the inter-webs is that musical theater major Erik Heitz was involved with it.
Anyway it's a nice segue into saying so long to last week's graduates. I thought I had it bad, showing up the year immediately following football and hockey national championships to have Brian Cook's class be all like "Ha Ha, You Missed It!"* Well these cats started classes the week of The Horror, and leave with the taste of the "okay now we have to fire him" blowout to Mississippi State. In the process they survived three losses to Michigan State, four losses to Ohio State, an Ultimate Test of Fandom Endurance, and the punch to the dong that turned Corey Liuget's life around.** However they did witness two comebacks versus Notre Dame, Illinois in OT, postseason runs from eminently likeable hockey and basketball squads, and apparently more flash mobs than any class in history.
So here's to the Class of 2011. You got pretty hosed seeing just the carcass of Bo's Empire, and then having to suffer three years of rebuilding just so we could knock down and declaim the whole damn edifice. Yet there you were, every week, boozed up in the student section with all the optimism of a Denard smile, and all the un-canned coordination of a flash mob. You should all get avatar badges or something.
* This was literally the front page headline of our Daily freshman orientation issue.
** Bonus: Article written by "Tim Sullivan" (NTTS).
Those Who Will Never See This Day
About a month ago I promised a Part II to revisiting the Decimated Defense series. I got all the research done, down to making images of the charts, and planned to get it out the following week. But then I got early winds of the Cullen transfer (and learned I was seriously depressing my only follower on Twitter), so I put it off, and put it off, and put it off. With some fallout coming down the line from Tat-gate, Michigan State's Third Annual Assault and Potluck, and whatever Saban has to do to get down to 85 again (they're at +11 according to oversigning.com), maybe it's best we wait 'till at least fall practice for the whole reveal.
Still, with sincere apologies to DosLeches, Cullen's transfer to Pitt leaves the pool of defensive backs in the same perilous state it's been in for Class of '11's entire collegiate career. Observe (UPDATE: sorted by position, and where you'd expect them to be on the depth chart given projection as recruit and time in program):
|Starred, left after Junior season for NFL, not drafted|
|Fell down depth chart, resisted move to FS, transferred before 2010 season|
|Played as fr and so, but got kicked off team during 2009 season|
|2007||Troy Woolfolk||5'11"||176||5.5||Injured for 2010 season, Medical redshirt, expected starter at CB in 2011|
|Played as freshman, transferred after 2011 Spring Game|
|2008||J.T. Floyd||6'0"||179||5.5||Injured during 2010 season, if recovered possible starter at CB in 2011|
|Not admitted to university|
|No redshirt, graduated after 2010 season|
|2010||Courtney Avery||5'10"||165||5.5||Played and started as Fr, projected starting CB in 2011|
|2010||Terrence Talbott||5'10"||172||5.5||Played and started as Fr, backup at CB|
|2011||Greg Brown||5'10"||180||5.5||Freshman EE|
|2011||Blake Countess||5'10"||171||5.8||Incoming Freshman|
|2011||Delonte Hollowell||5'8"||162||5.7||Incoming Freshman|
|Bust, head injury in 2010 effectively ended career|
|Moved to Spinner/LB, played sparingly as So., transferred late in 2009 season.|
|Not admitted to university|
|Held back by injuries in early career, transferred before 2010 season.|
|Transferred citing playing time (?!?!!!) before 2009 season|
|2010||Marvin Robinson||6'1"||190||5.8||Backup in 2010, projected backup at SS in 2011|
|Moved to LB, injured in 2010, possible starter at WLB in 2011|
|Moved to LB, fell down depth chart, bust.|
|Started at FS in 2010, moved to LB, projected starter at SLB in 2011|
|2010||Josh Furman||6'3"||194||5.7||Redshirted in 2010, 3rd on depth chart at SS|
|2010||Carvin Johnson||6'0"||185||5.7||Played SLB/Spinner as Fr, projected starting FS in 2011|
|2009||Thomas Gordon||5'11"||199||5.5||Played as freshman, projected backup at either S position in 2011|
|Was starting FS by end of fr year, transferred after coaching change in 2011|
|2011||Raymon Taylor||5'10"||167||5.8||Incoming Freshman|
|2011||Tamani Carter||6'0"||175||5.5||Incoming Freshman|
|2008||Jordan Kovacs||6'0||195||4.9||Student body walk-on, 3rd year starter at SS as RS Jr in 2011|
Here's the talent distribution versus the field, with incoming freshmen not counted because they're freshmen:
Take where you were right before Woolfolk went down last year, remove James Rogers, and add a year of experience to everybody, and that's Michigan's 2011 defensive backfield. As you can see the closest thing after Troy to an upperclassman with any kind of recruiting hype is Marvin Robinson, a true sophomore who doesn't seem likely to displace Kovacs and may move to linebacker in the future. Unless the new staff works miracles and/or some of these guys were very underrated, please keep expectations low. Best case scenario is nobody gets hurt, Carvin as a sophomore is the second competent free safety at Michigan since 1997, and the unit performs like a poor man's Notre Dame.
Sorry DosLeches. It depresses me too, but a Ngata/Mattison face-mash can always cheer me up.
There were two this week not counting TomVH and Tim (YTTS).
First, stubob put up Part II of his Gauging Team Effectiveness blog, this time with San Diego State broken down. It's not a very tight comparison since there's a huge difference in schedule strength but the results show some competency. Inspired by the exercise, the_white_tiger posted a long and detailed response on his blog Maize-Colored Glasses. Takeaway from the latter is that Hoke inherited a thing that was worse than we thought it was, and left it a thing better than we thought it was. There may be something to those uber alleles after all.
As for your Diarist of the Week, that goes to Captain, who ran with a theme from the alma mater to give us a fitting metaphor for the state of the program:
Although his success may still lurk in the realm of our collective optimism, Brady Hoke is already bringing something palpable to this team. It's light materialized into rote sound bytes about "toughness" and "fundamentals." It's identity. It's the dawn that ends the night.
It's morning in Michigan.
For what it's worth, the Flash Mob in the top right was at Go Blue Rendezvous for incoming MBA students a few weeks ago. I was at Blimpy Burger, but saw the video later. Blimpy was worth it.
My Minnesota classmates had four years of WIN FIGHT TRY Timmy B.
Your move, Michigan.
.....why I saw Minnesota Fans holding up signs that read, "Well, Do Your Best Anyway...."
I got mentioned on MgoBlog! I am famous (even if my name is spelled wrong)!
I met Not That (This?) Tim Sullivan at the Ohio State game. He was writing a feature about Tate. Nice guy.
Flash Mob = Lamest Things Ever!
Only a choir dork would ever think this was cool to do... Stop annoying everyone!
Watch what you say about choir dorks, revelli.
On pain of death.
Did I hit a little too close to home on that one? Sorry if I ruffled your feathers but these flashmob things are soooo annoying.
PS- where did my previous comment go?
Your previous comment is still there, it's collapsed for trolling/flaming. There are a few former glee club members roaming around here. I'm sure they got to you.
They dance like EECS students.
But what are they doing on Central Campus?
And why are some of them women?
Some things we'll never know.
The universe can continue, graduation gowns are still black Daily slideshow
Blue must have been just for the commercial.
Rusted root? Nice, its been a while since I've listened to that
i know erik, he said they were students
But there are credits in the video. How hard would it be to do a student search on U-M's directory? I mean, if one really wanted to know...
But yes, the 5 different cameras do kinda telegraph how set up it was.
and have ever since the Horror - she graduated yesterday, so I am confident UM football will return to it's winning ways, starting in 2011.
Congrats, Ali, and will miss you in AA, but looking forward to winning games again.
Thank God she's gone!
AND not only was she bad luck, but half the table got sick after her graduation dinner last night at Gandy Dancer.
On the other hand, my son did got a picture with Carl Hagelin, who also happened to be there for graduation dinner with his girlfriend and parents.
Are the UM Patriots still doing their thing? I loved Pac Man running through the library.
"uber alleles" = best use of "meme" meme to date
In the halls of anthro-bio memes, Brian's "uber alleles" replaces the Carr-era "Better executed Mousterian Industry."
with cross outs is a great visual. Although it is even more concerning to see it done that way, I thank you for putting it out there. The defensive secondary continues to be the primary concern, and it seems like we have suffered more than our fair share of misery in that regard. I hope the men we have put it all into learning the defense and executing it wisely and with vicious vigor.
Cam Gordon's still around, right?? His name is showing up with strikeouts even though the text says projected starter this year.
I crossed out guys who moved to LB. Bell and Jones are crossed out as well.
I've been to three graduations at Michigan State. They use green robes.
The victorian academic wear in turn came from robes students wore since the Middle Ages because a big, shapeless robe was the cheapest way to keep yourself warm in the unheated, uninsulated stone structures at Oxford and the Sorbonne built to be more pleasing to the eye than the bones in December.
He said at every UNIVERSITY in the world....
I hope we have sent all the bad juju on its waaaaaaaaay yaaaaaaay (yodeling Canadian accent required)! Send it on its way!
"Omaway Omaway, Omaway Omaway ...." Commence Whistling...
I'm just as guilty, but everyone seems to be starting their own blog rather than writing Diaries now.
Magnus, I agree there's been a lot of the Diary folks starting their own blogs lately, but not that you're "just as guilty." You've got a unique perspective and niche, plus you put in the time to make Touch the Banner and your posts at MNB a worthwhile addition to the blog roll.
Some of these guys, though, what they've got to add would be well read on MGo but is kind of superfluous on a blogspot.
P.S. By "niche" I of course mean "attractive, scantily clad members of the opposite sex which preclude me from reading your blog at work."
Well, thanks for the compliments. And you're probably right about some of the Diaries not being enough to create a separate blog. It just seems like there have been a TON of Michigan blogs popping up in the past few months.
"Attractive, scantily clad members of the opposite sex which preclude [you] from reading [my] blog at work" are just about my favorite thing in the world next to Michigan football.
And I've tried to limit the scantily clad ones to my posts on the weekend. That way people are probably enjoying those posts in their own home rather than on a work computer.
That MGoBlog doesn't fill.
I'm not a statistician, so I'm not sure what my numbers truely say, but I think the YPD/PPD effort was an oversimplification. The number of drives didn't vary as much as I thought it would, so I think the whole thing boiled down to "score more points, give up fewer points == good."
the_white_tiger, I read your article, and I understand your reasoning to eliminate FG from consideration, I do think that it does need to be mentioned if you're analyzing Michigan, only because it was so abysmal. I think looking at some Oregon/Alabama as a control, just to make sure the numbers say what we think they're saying, would be a good idea.
I do think the expected vs. actual score difference was an interesting evaluator of overall performance, but the Mathlete's PAN numbers probably capture that better than I did. I'd still like to see the Mathlete PAN-up SDSU for 2009/2010 and have someone with some actual math chops take a look at what to expect next year.
the only thing worse than twitter is a flash mob. this amazing song of my youth is ruined for me now