"Northwestern fans can be both heartened and disheartened by the loss to Minnesota just like how nineteenth-century resurrectionists were heartened when they pried a heart from a freshly-buried corpse and then disheartened it when they sold it to a disreputable anatomist."
"The experience he has from last year is starting to show," Jazz forward Gordon Hayward said. "He’s making shots, and he made some gutsy plays against Portland. He’s got a confidence about him that he can get the job done."
Conference play has come, and Big Ten teams can safely retreat to their thunderdomes to clobber each other in peace, insulated from the braying mockery of the national media. There is still upheaval. Michigan has fallen apart. Dave Brandon and Brady Hoke have been confined to the Touliers Palace.
I'm pretty sure this is Delvon Roe. Yeah, this guy has been doing this for years.
This person has 375 youtube videos in which he wears an Optimus Prime mask and Gorilla costume while extolling Michigan State things. Delvon Roe was an acting major or something and now spends 90% of his time trashing Denard Robnson on twitter. QED.
Our brief regional nightmare nears an end. After chatter chatter chatter for months about what the new and devolved Big Ten will look like, Adam Rittenberg reports that this whole "geography" thing is going to get a spin and the last decision to make is which Indiana team to put in each division. The future of your football, at least until Florida (Gulf Coast) gets added:
Purdue or Indiana
Michigan State was apparently not able to weasel its way into the West division and force Michigan into a protected crossover, so there's that. The Indiana teams will get a protected crossover, and that'll be the only one.
A nine-game conference schedule is on the docket for 2016, which will allow Michigan to play teams in the other division slightly less than half the time. The goal is "for every pair of teams to play at least once every four years." Conference expansion, y'all.
For balance purposes the East should get Indiana, which has not had a recent run of success like that of Purdue under Joe Tiller. Rittenberg concurs, or rather I'm agreeing with him since he wrote his thing first. Whatever.
Goodbye, Iowa, Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Brown Jug game. Hello… you. At least I don't have to figure out if I should root for Ohio State anymore.
What is doubt? Baby don't hurt me, no more. I no longer have any reference for what is reasonable doubt of Michigan and what is flat-out hatin'. Still, my vibe from the various NCAA talking-head shows was that all things were extrapolated from Michigan's lack of tourney pedigree and flameout last year. Michigan was a popular upset pick in the first round, and even if that was avoided most discussions centered on how awesome VCU was and how they would cut through the tourney like a hot knife through butter.
I said this back before, but if I was VCU, Michigan is the last team I would want to see as a second-round matchup. You thrive on turnovers. Here is a John Beilein team piloted by Trey Burke. Sad Panda. Meanwhile, this Wolters kid at SDSU is pretty good… and his team has two guys taller than 6'6" and a defensive rating in the 200s. Also John Beilein has a pretty decent tourney record himself despite last year.
In any case, there are a couple people reacting to the televised Michigan-trashing. Luke Winn is one despite being the guy calling BS on Michigan as a national title contender because of their defense a few months ago:
Upset I Don't Like: No. 13 South Dakota State over No. 4 Michigan. Nate Wolters is a cult hero -- I wrote an ode to his brilliance in November -- and Wolters vs. Trey Burke should be quite the show. But Burke was shut down last year by a defensive-minded mid-major star (Ohio's D.J. Cooper), and Wolters is far from a lockdown guy. Nor is his team. The Jackrabbits have the fourth-worst defense in the entire bracket, which doesn't bode well for their ability to hold the Wolverines' high-powered offense in check. A fun game to watch, no doubt, but it won't be an upset.
While he adds Michigan to his "why I'm hesitant about five teams you might like" section he also adds the #1 and #2s from this bracket in there and predicts Michigan to the Elite Eight against Florida. I would take that.
BONUS: Winn's random upset pick is Valpo over Michigan State. Oh, Luke Winn, you cad. I'm not that… yes I am. Yes, yes I am.
THE VERY UNBONUSEST: Damn near everyone is calling an Ohio State-Wisconsin regional final. Having no compulsion at all about rooting for Ohio State to win a 38-33 game is the worst.
I think Meinke gave that short shrift. There's quite a bit of player-coach interaction in there. That was interesting to me. Hoke exhorts, Hoke orders a rep, Hoke says minimal progress has been made and seems slightly mollified. I enjoy anything that shows you the way these guys interact with the players, enjoy the detail Hoke and Mattison and Funk get down to in these things.
As long as it doesn't play "not to lose," everything should be fine, the Wolverines say.
"We missed layups, we played not to lose (against Ohio) and (now), we're going to try to do everything we can to go in there and play to win," Michigan coach John Beilein said Sunday night.
This entire article made me sad for the people who have to say things to the media, and the media that has to write them down. Their mutual existence leads to statements like this:
"We just focus on this game, this is a different team," Morgan said. "This Michigan team is a different team.
"And I'm not saying that in a bad way, I'm just saying (the Ohio loss) doesn't necessarily haunt us."
The most innocuous comment possible is followed up by a disclaimer. This is our lot, we readers and talkers and writers.
We're what? The Big Ten is paying Maryland 20 to 30 million extra in travel subsidy? We needed the Terrapins to turn our league into bloated chaos that we're giving them extra money to not be sad with? Gahhhhhhh. HERE IS YOUR MONEY YOU WILL FIND THAT YOUR SADNESS IS INHERENT TO YOUR EXISTENCE AND YOU MUST WORK ON YOUR INNER PEACE TO FIND HAPPINESS. RESIGN YOUR BODY TO ITS DESTRUCTION AND FREE YOUR MIND, MARYLAND.
That's abso-fucking-lutely infuriating, frankly. I assume it's a lump sum based on the way the article puts it, but still. Are the rest of the Big Ten schools also getting extra money for when they have to go to Maryland and Rutgers? I think I know the answer. Fuck Delany and his brave new world.
I'm fairly certain many of the conclusions people are making about the 'travel subsidy', as it's called, are way off base and wrong:
The original report was vague and full of assumptions. The 'facts', as they were reported, were minimal: "The amount of the subsidy is not publicly available, but sources familiar to the deal say it's in the 20-30 million range."
Maryland has a cashflow problem and was a school the Big Ten really wanted. This travel subsidy, as I see it, is a way to give Maryland some cash so they can quit bootstrapping it for a while. They negotiated for some money up front. Spending your last year in the ACC pinching pennies and entering the Big Ten on a low note is not good for Maryland or the Big Ten.
If it was really a travel subsidy, wouldn't it make sense to make this a recurring payment rather than a lump sum payment? If it is a subsidy in the true sense of a subsidy, they would receive a reimbursement for the extra expense (which I don't actually believe is any significance more) rather than "Hey Maryland here's lunch money for the next week now try not to spend it all before Friday."
Maryland and Rutgers are both located very close to airports. In and out. As Seth pointed out a couple times the past few years - you're either on a bus or on a plane. Those are the variable costs. Flying 800 miles or flying 1200 miles aren't as important to travel costs as being close to a big airport with commercial flights.
Basically, I'm not buying that Maryland needed a subsidy for travel. They need money now, a one-time lump sum "Travel Subsidy" is one way to do it. In the end, this isn't even news: The Big Ten is giving money to a cash strapped Maryland. This was reported months ago.
Agreed. More of a bailout than a subsidy; Maryland might be on the verge of bankruptcy.
What intrigues me is the cost side for Maryland. What are they paying for this gravy? Usurious interest rates? Their first-born children? Eternal bondage of their souls in Jim Delany's blasphemous bordello of blumpkins and bloviating? Delany taking on the role of loan shark-- anything is possible.
Nebraska had to "buy in" to the TV deal, as they didn't get a full 1/12th share for at least the first couple of years. My guess is Maryland needed an advance on their new earnings, so they may pay this back by taking a smaller % of the next TV deal, or something similar.
"Over? Did you say, over? Nothing is over until we decide it is!"
That and I don't really believe Nebraska has earned their full share yet. That happens when the Big Ten negotiates with the networks for their Tier 1 rights. Unfortunately for them, that doesn't happen until 2016.
ABC (and ESPN primetime), CBS, and Fox want the M-OSU, M-PSU, M-Nebraska, OSU-PSU, OSU-Neb, PSU-Neb, Wisconsin-Nebraska, etc. games for their national telecasts. They'll pay for the large fanbase and following that Nebraska adds. Similar to a Miami or Florida state.
For the Big Ten Network, Nebraska added the population of Nebraska and some plains states to the BTN footprint subscription rates. When Nebraska doesn't play on the national game, they add a little inventory to the selection of games, they add higher ad fees for their BTN games (than say Minnesota-Indiana), and they add some out of footprint subscribers. That's not a ton of income realized to date.
If Maryland and Rutgers get BTN footprint rates for DC, Maryland and New Jersey (not counting NYC), they basically pay for themselves and then some immediately with subscription fees and increased ads. The Big Ten wanted Maryland bad, so they made them a good deal.
There is no way that Maryland's travel costs are doubling. On average Maryland is only ~150 miles further away from Big Ten schools than ACC schools. And for football, the schools in the Big Ten East division will actually be closer than those in the ACC Atlantic division.
What Sushi said makes a world of sense and I do agree with most of it. But I also think it makes perfect sense that Maryland's travel costs will double, at least. In the ACC Maryland has six schools within logical busing distance. Will be seven, stretching to potentially eight next year (Syracuse is what I would call on the edge.) In the Big Ten they will have two. Maybe three if you count Ohio, but that's a long stretch. More than doubling the number of plane trips they have to make does plausibly double a travel budget, especially since traveling by plane is more than twice as expensive as traveling by bus.
I don't really get the scheduling bitching and blaming it on conference expansion.
I just posted this somewhere else, but we play the opposite division teams more with 9 games, 14 teams, and no protected crossover than we did with 8 games, 12 teams, and a protected crossover.
It's 3 times out of 7 (42ish%) years as opposed to 2 times out of 5 (40%).
The strictly math argument is wrong. If you hate Maryland and Rutgers, fine. I still think it's a helluva lot better to play Maryland and Rutgers than Northern Illinois and App State, but I also live in DC. Maybe you guys still in the midwest were pumped for that extra non-conference crap game.
But I'm tired of people bitching about something that isn't even true.
- Knowing DB's insistence on playing home games (and not without reason as each one is worth millions) it's not that Maryland and Rutgers are replacing MAC games, it's more that they're replacing quality OOC games.
- A lot of the resistance comes from the fact that nobody considers Maryland and Rutgers to be worthy additions to the schedule, and the math still says we're trading games against Iowa, Wisconsin, and most of the rest of the traditional Big Ten (not to mention what was shaping up to be a fun series against Nebraska) for Maryland and Rutgers. Fewer Brown Jug games, more Rutgers? That sucks. "Us in the Midwest" are more pumped to play Midwestern teams, not East Coast ones.
Truly. We're talking full-blown meltdown. Fortunately I don't believe in the inevitability of the move. In fact I barely believe in the possibility, unless something changes. On the one hand you have Internet assumptions and unsourced rumors from two-bit local-TV yahoos. On the other hand you have actual trustworthy reporters on record declaring that UVA is one of the forces holding the ACC together, rather than pulling it apart.
You live in VA, you're possibly familiar with David Teel, who said on a radio show/podcast not long ago something to this effect: "I talk to people at UVA who I've been talking to for 20 years, and in 20 years these people have not once lied to me, and now they're looking me in the eye and saying UVA is not interesting in moving to the Big Ten now or in the future." That's a strong statement. Much stronger than some asshole tweeting "UNC HAS B1G OFFER UVA TO FOLLOW!!"
Speaking of Virginia, on another topic entirely, are things still crazy with the Board of Visitors? I heard something about a de-accreditation threat and a faculty vote of no confidence. Is this all lingering effects from the Sullivan thing or is the governance still all messed up?
The de-accreditation threat thing (as best I understand it) was sort of a procedural thing as fallout from last summer since the way the BOV went about their coup supposedly violated something in the bylaws of the accrediting organization. Lately it's become clear that Dragas is still not playing nice, the BOV is still not especially transparent, and there is not the air of cooperation that there ought to be.
What a mess. Tension between the faculty and administration is a pretty regular element of the politics of higher ed. So is faculty vs. admin and trustees. I've never heard of a case with the faculty and admin lined up against the trustees. That kind of stuff can make it really difficult for a university to function, lead people to start seeking out other jobs, etc.
I am also wary of your first point. I can't say anything to counter it with certainty, only point to the non-conference scheduling Brandon has done for the next 3-4 years with teams like Utah, Arkansas and purchasing games from teams like Colorado and Oregon State. Hopefully, the increased revenue from a better Big Ten package (e.g. 14 x 9 games to air versus 12 x 8 games) will allow us offset any lost revenue due to maintaining one "near ND-level" opponent per year.
As for the second point, the Big Ten attempted to go to 9 games, went for it, the coaches got pissed, and reverted back to an 8 game schedule. As I look at it, expansion was the catalyst for a 9-game schedule
I can't accept the argument that Illinois/Wisconsin is being traded for Rutgers/Maryland when we are actually playing the other division more frequently due to expansion.
Well, look at it this way then: Before, we had Iowa, Northwestern, Nebraska, and Minnesota in our division (and played Ohio every year.) We trade those four for PSU, Rutgers, Maryland, and IU/Purdue. The math really is incomplete if it stops at "trading 2-of-5 for 3-of-7." We're taking three traditional Big Ten teams plus one that we like and going from 100% of the time to 43% of the time, and in exchange we get two of that plus two totally nontraditional, East Coast matchups, 100% of the time. So yes, cross-division play will increase. Marginally, but it increases. But I think it's more than canceled out by the likely permanent addition of two teams with which we have no history whatsoever. We're trading more history for less.
Your point assumes a comparison with the current 12 team arrangement. My complaints about conference expansion go back to a time when we only missed one or two Big Ten teams a year. Or even way back to a day when we actually played everyone in our conference each year. If you take that as a starting point, and you value the traditional Big Ten, then this 14 team arrangement sucks too.
I am totally with Brian in his somewhat joking suggestion of a 20 team conference with a 9 game schedule and no crossovers as long as our division is: Michigan, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Michigan State, Illinois, Northwestern, Indiana, Purdue, and Iowa. Then you can have whoever the heck you want in the other division. We'll just have one more game to win to the get the Rose Bowl.
Yeah, I know, I am an old guy, I need to get with the times, we need MOAR champsionship games, keeping up with the SEC, its the way of the future, etc. I get that its not going back to the way it was. That doesn't mean I have to like it.
“Your satisfaction lies in your illusions/ But your delusions are yours and not mine”
"Or even way back to a day when we actually played everyone in our conference each year. If you take that as a starting point, and you value the traditional Big Ten, then this 14 team arrangement sucks too."
If you are asking for a 4 year stretch of our 135 year history, then fine. We only played 6, 7 or 8 conference games when Bennie, Bump and Bo were coaches except 1981-84, when we played 9. Out of 9 other Big Ten teams.
People romanticize and reminisce false memories. If our starting point is roughly 3% of our program's history, I'll take the East division in a 14-team setup.
The future of Michigan basketball is very bright, though Brian's above advice to Maryland should none-the-less be followed by all, as the success of the basketball teams will never truly free us from the suffering born of our attachments.
"All of the doughnuts have names that sound like prostitutes."
RE: Arena. There is a little bit of that going around lately (back taxes closing bars). Makes me wonder if that is just par for the course owning a bar or if there was some oddity in the tax codes this tax seaosn that caught a few unfortunate bar owners.
or uh, Duder, or El Duderino if you're not into the whole brevity thing.
I assume the govt. is the very last person you don't pay as a business owner so they probably have a bunch of other problems. I just found it interesting that a few bars have had tax issues in the last year that I am aware of. Maybe a weird tax thing that ended up biting them in the ass. No clue.
or uh, Duder, or El Duderino if you're not into the whole brevity thing.
As a Chicago-land resident, I'm going to miss going to (Ryan Field @) Dyche Stadium every other year. That was as close to a home game, in an away stadium, as there ever was. I guess I'll have to hope Purdunk makes into the East division. That's a crap stadium but it's closer than Bloomington.
Maybe it's just me, but I actually think playing Minnesota less frequently for the jug will actually enhance the rivalry a bit. It's been so lopsided in recent years that I can't help but wonder if we take it just a bit for granted. But I guarantee that the first time we lose it for 3-4 years, it's going to sting and we'll be itching for that rematch.
The more I think about it, I'm guessing UM said basically to MSU "We're not agreeing to a protected cross-over. If you want to play us every year, then join our division. Otherwise, see you every 3-4 years." And MSU chose to play us every year.
Hey, I've got a good idea: put all the good teams in one
division and all the crap ones with Wisconsin and the other, and we can all kill each other to play Wisconsin every year until Duke and NC join whereupon we won't care if the Eastern Division has a jillion teams and the western four, either. What happened to putting MSU over there?
I'd keep some perspective here. Our divisional mates with whom we will "all kill each other" are one great program (OSU), one program with potential but a long road to get there (PSU), two good-ish programs of late (MSU & Rutgers), a pretty "meh" program (Maryland), and a doormat (Indiana/Purdue). With the other division being shitty, most of our crossover games will be soft, too. It's true that our division is tougher, but I think that's a good thing, since it protects against our schedule becoming too crazy soft in a watered down Big Ten.
The divisions as they were saw us play our division, plus OSU and someone. So we played OSU every year, while nebraska could play someone else, and MSU got to play Indiana. This will make the division schedules more balanced at least
"Over? Did you say, over? Nothing is over until we decide it is!"
with Florida Gulf Coast to Philly tomorrow for their game with Georgetown. Excited to tell the A.D. and President that once we start the football program the B1G is ready to welcome them with open arms.
The biggest thing I took from that practice video is Frank Clark's body composition. He put on a lot more weight this offseason, but he doesn't look "big" except in his legs and butt, where he looks huge. That's a really good thing. He's going to have a lot of power coming off that edge to where he'll be able to speed rush past someone or bum rush. If he can play more disciplined this year (which wouldn't surprise me with another year of maturity and high level coaching) he could be the guy on our D that makes the biggest jump.