Right, I've noticed that I link to about 90% of everything at iBlog For Cookies. But I have to. If you aren't reading it already I will beat you into submission with links until you do. The latest: a dissection of the previously mentioned Motown Sports Revival posts on Michigan losses. I basically agree with iBFC here. No offense to MSR but I think he's missing the forest for a few nasty trees that had an 18 point lead on Illinois. The really interesting thing to me is the lack of variance in Michigan football. The other programs in the list have all had up and down seasons; Lloyd Carr has never lost more than four games or less than two with the exception of '97. If you remove the first three years of his career, Lloyd has lost three games every year except one year of four losses and one year of two. This seems to be a macro symptom of Carr's aversion to variance.
Troy Smith is in more trouble according to The Canton Repository, though it appears to be really, really minor:
Smith attended a quarterback camp held by Tennessee Titans quarterback Steve McNair. Smith was one of six college athletes at the charitable camp, but was the only player of the six whose university is on academic quarters rather than semesters.
If Smith missed a class to attend the camp â€” as is believed to be the case â€” he violated NCAA rules.
Smith is already out for the opener. I am willing to bet everything I own that this does not affect his status for Texas.
The bowl tie-ins got all realigned: the Big Ten has lost the Sun and Music City bowls and picked up the Citrus Jr. (mgoblog avoids corporate bowl naming at all costs) and some stupid thing called the "Insight Bowl." I don't care, because going to one of these bowls means losing to Indiana or something, and one craptastic bowl is identical to any other craptastic bowl.
An ominous sign regarding incoming freshman CB Johnny Sears can be seen on the Milford Academy's (temporary host of Marques Slocum) roster. Milford is a prep school for those who narrowly miss qualifying. Sears is listed. Nothing is official yet but obviously he is still not qualified and has at least had to make a backup plan.
USA Today somehow infiltrated the Fort to get a vague unquoted assertion from Pat Massey in an interesting article about the "voluntary" summer workouts that get less voluntary every year:
Michigan defensive tackle Mike Massey said the Wolverines were working out this summer with all their scholarship players.
Sweet Jesus! Massey said something to the media! Looks like Alan Branch is our new starting DT.
Gil Thorpe... er, Brandt is the Official NFL Draft Guru of the Official NFL Website and he says that Gabezilla is one of the top six senior prospects for next year's draft. Says Thorpe... er, Brandt:
Has great quickness and strength ... a bigger version of Dewayne Robertson (drafted fourth overall in 2003 by the New York Jets) ... this spring at the Playboy All-America weekend, I watched this young man make moves that 180-pound wide receiver would make ... .needs to play hard every down this fall and will be picked very high.
Someone please forward the last sentence to Watson one million times. Also, Jason Avant makes an appearance in the "oh and these guys too" section.
Scout is running a series of articles on freshman QB Jason Forcier's recruitment. Parts one, two, and three are up. Cloying in parts, but when GBW steps out of the way and just lets Jason's parents speak it's excellent. There is also heartwarming.
Additionally, there's an article on the Braylon-free WR corps, which will still kick ass.
More NCAA 2006 commentary can be found at The Blog For the Sports Gamer, which is all over it like a piece of cheese on Phil Fulmer's ice cream cone. (That one's just for you, Orson.) If only I had known about the TBFTSG in early July, because one of the three writers managed to pick the thing up like the second or something. I suggest reading the entire July Archive if you're into the scene which is teh cool for school. Strangely, one of the guys who runs the site: diehard Buckeye. Other guy: diehard Wolverine. Reminds me of that ESPN commercial. Anyway. They're rather harsh on the game (though one of them is playing Race for the Heisman which, as expected, is totally fricking retarded), though they agree that it's tons better than 2005, which I get angrier and angrier at each passing day.
Personal experience is thus: I switched to Heisman and am mostly delighted. Michigan offered me a job after I won the NC with the Wildcats, so I took it, and now have two wicked sweet 99 speed senior corners. I am now 4-0, though the only good team I played was a #15 Notre Dame squad with an absolutely crushing running back. But since I have the kickass corners I was able to play eight guys in the box and blitz all day to attempt to contain the back. He still made some plays but I held him roughly in check after he sprinted out to 100 yards midway through the second quarter. There are some issues with dumb computer AI (let's run the pitchout-throwback-to-the-QB play that lost us five yard the previous six times we ran it again!) but 2006 is currently running away with the Best Sports Game I've Ever Played title.
(Also, from Fanblogs, UW linebacker Josh Cribbs CAN'T READ MOMMA and therefore can't play.)