Saban did it! Mister Ron Utah, you have stolen my thunder. I had this excellent long "when will we be Bama?" article/thesis I'd been building for HTTV 2013 (coming soon to a Kickstarter near you) and you go ahead and make it a two-part diary. The second half will presumably come later, but I'm going to skip ahead to it anyway so as to make another graph that people on this site who know graphs can yell at me about:
That's all according to Rivals because it's a quickchart and demonstrates that as well as Hoke has been doing on the recruiting trail, he has yet to (and most likely won't) approach the scale or quality of the Saban hauls. The similarity of this trajectory is obvious, and ends there. Bama was built by taking on a lot of academic/personality risks—way more than he had scholarship space for—and then picking through all that talent for the few worthwhile pieces. If you were a Shula recruit and couldn't compete with the new faces you were medicaled if you were lucky, and ground up into Soylent Green if not.
But then of course you don't really need to be Bama to dominate a division or two of the Big Ten Going on Sixteen. If Michigan can settle into a pattern of always getting classes like the last two, and developing them well, and if the no-risky-kids strategy does in fact pay off with high retention, and if much of the rest of our conference stays low, then there's a lot of Rose Bowl potential in this program. Except Saban's old Floridian nemesis now runs the cheat factory in Columbus, so the upside is less total dominance and more like being the disadvantaged good guy in a second 10-year war. Gear up.
Also stop being mean to people who are mean to me about my charts in the comments, leastways not the people who know what they're talking about.
Maybe conference expansion is actually all about academics? This is the suggestion put forth by MosherJordan, based on the realpolitik of how AAU research dollars are allocated, which he says has a lot to do with who powerful your boosters are and how many Congressmen you influence. Which is to say maybe the Big Ten's motivation for adding Rutgers and Maryland (and possibly UNC?) is to give the CIC a bigger bloc. I never did think to look at the recent round of expansion as a grab for electoral votes but if you do things that way…
Lighter parts are the recent additions
The real realpolitik of college football is that adding Syracuse gets you way fewer than 29 electoral votes, just as taking Pitt doesn't give you half of Pennsylvania's delegation and I wish Michigan produced more talent than Alabama and Mississippi combined.
Maybe some of the presidents are thinking this but I think you're really just looking at a secondary effect of the B1G's stated goal of adding large TV markets, which like electoral votes are strongly correlated with population. For example you may look at Mosher-Jordan with its position on top of a hill overlooking a wide field, its wide moats, its arrow slits for windows, its possession of a bona fide dungeon, and its practice of housing princesses (i.e. the Women in Science & Engineering program) in its tallest towers, and conclude that our dorm is in fact a medieval castle. But was MoJo really designed to withstand an assault by the local Medieval Club, or was that just an accidental benefit to an edifice intended to protect its inhabitants' virginity?
Our keep hast ne'er fallen, despite the WISE girls' treachery
WHEN THEY CAME FOR THE YOUTUBERS, I DID NOT SPEAK, FOR I WAS NOT A YOUTUBER
Quick exercise: name a company that has changed its name because they destroyed their reputation by being awful? In the time it just took you to come up with "Comcast" or something, T3Media (formerly Thought Equity Motion) just killed 30 more perfectly-legal-under-fair-use highlight videos with nuisance claims. They took the UFR videos until a legal dude had to get them to stop; now they're systematically destroying WH's collection among others. I am not advocating that the next YouTube sensation should be people going around kicking T3 executives in the dong. I would never advocate that. I would advocate not Godwin-ing yourself when talking about people who make a business of using the legal system to do illegal things.
70 WAYS TO FIX THE DEFENSE
This thread began as a query as the above. Suggestions include being more physical, being more aggressive, better hustling, more elbow grease, being more "ball strong," better discipline, fixing the refs, playing crappier teams, and bringing in Nick Nolte to recruit Shaq. Needs and Space Coyote and someone who may be a talk radio host got into it over zone.
CELEBRITY MICHIGAN FANS
Seriously how is it this thread doesn't have a single Kate Upton pic yet? Others everyone knows are James Earl Jones, Jeter, Rich Eisen, Michael Phelps, Larry Page, Russell Crowe (from his weird frendship with Lloyd), the Unabomber, and Madonna. Other A-List (other than the players) folk as per this thread include Felicity Huffman, Sanjay Gupta, Lucy Liu, Mike Wallace of 60 Minutes, one or two of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, one of the Twilight kids, the guy who started Craigslist, Vern Troyer (mini me), Adam Schefter of ESPN fame, Miss Jacobson of Cold Pizza, Lupe Fiasco, Mikey from Orange County Chopper, the Sklar Borthers, the guy who created the iPod, Jon Chait, and Ann Coulter (cringe!). To this I would like to add Patrick Stewart for "Make it so, Number 1!"
And you know, Clarence Darrow, Gerald Ford, the SDS guys, and SPACE BITCHES!
THIS IS THE DEFINITION OF NOT OFF TOPIC!
I have no idea why the OP put "OT:" in the title originally, but a thread to list your favorite Michigan sports moments is right at the core of what we cover, albeit snowflakey. Anyway it's a snowflakey day in Michigan so here's the leaderboard:
4 votes: Team 132's Sweet Finale, Braylonfest, The Pigskin Classic Comeback
Others receiving votes: '96 Hockey Championship, Legg's goal, Hello Heisman, 3OT Scorefest vs Illinois, Harbaugh to Kolesar, The Penultimate Fab Five game, Bo Wins His Rose Bowl, The Big Chill, Touchdown Billy Taylor, "And They'll Never Catch Him" aka "Dennis Bergkamp!", Lloyd's Last Huzzah, Ronnie Johnson Tramples Wisconsin, Let There Be Roses (2003), Meet Shoelace, The Leap in Lansing, Marquise Stretches, The Kick (Brabbs edition), Back to the Dance, Some dude lying in the snow asking MGoBlog if he should seek medical attention, the '98 hockey championship, The Horseshoe in Winter (2000), Beating Marquette in '77, The Buffalo Stampede ('03 comeback), '93 Rose Bowl, Bama Misses the XP, "Fergodsakes."
We should not be bragging about Jeter, ever. You don't brag about the douche you went to high school who gave herpes to half of the female population of you small town, so why would you brag about that asshole?
The Denard video is great. But the highlights of him taking handoffs and catching passes make me sad that one of the greatest players in Michigan history was robbed of his chance to play the final few games of his career at his own position.
Also, my god were those Outback Bowl uniforms stupid. Dave Brandon should be forced to watch highlights from that game on a loop with his eyelids pinned open until he agrees to stop screwing with tradition.
Don't forget about Tool's drummer Danny Carey. He rocked a Novak jersey at last year's show in Toledo. He's a Lakers fan and Jayhawks fan too, so maybe he was just doing it to get a rise out of the Ohio residents. Either way, it deserves a mention here.
A recent addition I just learned about: Selma Blair of Legally Blonde, Hellboy, and the latest Charlie Sheen crapfest, Anger Management.
Cranbrook/Kingswood and UofM alum.
"the Spirit of Michigan...is based on a deathless loyalty to Michigan and all her ways....and a conviction that nowhere is there a better university, in any way, than this Michigan of ours" - Fielding Yost
I strongly suspect (i.e., am virtually certain and know the suggestion is made wholly in jest and as a swipe at YouTube) that it's inadvertent, but no to this.
Hey Big Ten Division names idea: Joy Division and Panzer Division.
Joy Division is a bit more controversial name than many realize, and the Panzer reference underscores even more:
In order to avoid confusion with the London punk band Warsaw Pakt, the band renamed themselves Joy Division in early 1978, borrowing their new name from the prostitution wing of a Nazi concentration camp mentioned in the 1955 novel The House of Dolls.[
Regarding Alabama's recent domination in both recruiting and championships ... I am very curious to see whether the other SEC teams can keep pace, particularly Florida and LSU.
(I think Mississippi's recent 5-star haul will likely prove an anomoly.)
There's a persistent rumor floating around that Urban Meyer's departure from Florida was due to him seeing the Alabama handwriting on the wall. Florida has done well in recruiting of late as well, and their 11-2 season was a good sign for them. But is it enough to get them into the SEC championship and beat Alabama on a consistent basis? That's the lingering question in my mind.
I've read on this board (many times) that there are more "recruiting services peope" in the Land of SEC than there are in the Midwest. As such, kids get more attention and, therefore, more 5* ratings.
I submit that there are some very good 4* kids in the Midwest that are better football players than the southern 5* kids listed on the various boards. We are currently doing very well recruiting these better kids in the Midwest.
Additionally, our "great character kids" with lower ratings have better work ethic and can become greater contributors than a talented 5* with poor work ethic. I'm thinking of two on our team last year. There are a number of 5* questionable character kids that don't pan out in the SEC with Honey Badger being one of the most recent. Others end up with "medical conditions".
So, I think we are very close to becoming as dominant as Alabama.
"The guts and glue of the Maize and Blue" - Bob Ufer
I'm not convinced of your premise. I'm not saying you're wrong, I'm just not yet convinced.
There may well be more 5* ratings given out to players down south, but it does not necessarily follow that all 5* there are equivalent to 4* up north. Among the arguably inflated pool of 5* down there are some legitimate 5* players. And if a program (Alabama) can get more than their share ... well, then 3 NCs out of 4.
Ultimately the proof is in the results. When Michigan, Ohio State, Notre Dame and other northern-tier schools start beating SEC schools more consistently, then the discussion will change. But for now, based on recent past, the results suggest something different.
Now, all that said ... I do like what Hoke is doing. And I do think that OSU is also doing very well on the trail. I think we're in store for some very good football in the future.
Agree. I wasn't trying to nit-pick on the grammar ... it's just I think there are a lot of very good football players from the deep south. Are some overrated? Yeah, probably. But the pool of legitimately 5* players is pretty big down there is probably larger than up in the midwest.
Also to your point ... what is done with a player is more important than what their star rating is. There's a fair number of five-stars that wither away, while a lot of 3 and 4's rise and shine.
But re: Alabama ... much as I'd like to dismiss them as overhyped, they're not. They're a damn good football program built on solid recruiting and solid development. Damn it. :-)