"He's a hard worker, and he watched me and Tim (Hardaway Jr.) and Nik (Stauksas) put work in to become (first-round picks), and I'm just happy he's getting better," Burke said. "It's great for the program, too. It shows what type of program the University of Michigan is and the direction it continues to go in."
The glory of signing with Alabama. Three-star DT Darius Philon announced he'd be going to Alabama on Signing Day. He did it like this:
If that seems unusual, it's because Philon had probably just been told that he wasn't actually going to Alabama. Alabama swung a decommit and pulled his offer; Philon ended up signing with Arkansas, a school he hadn't so much as visited. The actual video is… weird:
The AJC says the "moral of the story" is…
If you commit to Alabama, it’s safe unless you get injured or Alabama has the opportunity to upgrade at your position before you officially sign the paperwork.
Horford redshirt update: happening. Jon Horford's injury redshirt has been increasingly likely with every game he misses and now seems all but certain. Horford himself says as much:
"If coach said, 'We absolutely need you to come back,' I could come back," Horford said Sunday following Michigan's 64-54 loss to Michigan State. "But other than that, I've missed so many games that I feel like coming back at this point would almost be a waste of a season."
In the long run that's probably a good thing for the program as it will move Horford out of Jordan Morgan's class and give the team a fifth-year senior to rely on after he departs (and who knows what Mitch McGary's going to do). That will help bridge the gap between this generation of posts and the Bielfeldt/Donnal setup. Speaking of Bielfeldt…
He came in here with really bad tendonitis in his knees and was not nearly as athletic as he (had shown in the past)," Beilein said during the Big Ten coaches teleconference. "He was really just struggling. But he's young, with a young birthday, and given the fact that we were still evolving with some positions here, it did not make sense for him or for us to burn a redshirt."
The tendons have gotten better and allowed him to play scout-team center:
"He's a big man with good hands, and those aren't a dime a dozen," Beilein said. "He's a tremendous rebounder. Where he's not gifted vertically, he's really good in small spaces."
It'll be interesting to see what he plays like… and where. He doesn't seem like either a four or a five at 6'7", 240. Presumably he'll be a backup at both spots for his first couple seasons.
The move. I'm not in agreement that Belichick's decision to let New York score in the waning moments of the Super Bowl was "the ballsiest call in Super Bowl History." It was obvious. The choices there are between watching an NFL kicker attempt a virtual extra point with no time on the clock or giving Tom Brady a minute with which to attempt the comeback.
It would have been ballsy if Belichick had come out of the two-minute warning with a red carpet and instructed his defense to bodily carry any Giant with the ball into the endzone. It also would have been correct:
The smartest play of all would've been for Belichick to have allowed the touchdown even earlier. The Patriots certainly could have done so on the play prior to Bradshaw's touchdown run, when he was stopped for a one-yard gain, forcing New England to burn its second timeout. In fact, they probably should have allowed a touchdown as early as the two-minute warning.That's the point at which the Win Probability of receiving a kickoff down by four or six points (0.23) exceeds the Win Probability of trying to stop the Giants from bleeding the clock dry (0.2). The Patriots would have had almost two minutes, two timeouts, and all four downs available to get a touchdown and steal the win. The lesson: New England didn't lie down soon enough.
Always quit, son.
The difference. There are many reasons I couldn't give two craps about the NFL. Many derive from the fact that merely contemplating Tom Coughlin's staid, fun-murdering face seriously damages my quality of life.
Many others are summarized by the Lombardi trophy presentation. Michael from Braves & Birds contrasts Barca's celebrations after winning the Champions League with the ceremony last night:
Instead of a football icon handing the trophy over, we get Roger Goodell, a life-long NFL suit who is most noted for giving himself the power to suspend players for any reason he sees fit and for persuading Peter King to write the most sycophantic cover story that I can recall reading in Sports Illustrated. Instead of a [Barcelona FC] totem like Puyol or a cancer-survivor like Abidal accepting the trophy, we had the New York Giants' owners getting the honor. Puyol and Abidal got the right to hold the trophy aloft because they established themselves as some of the best players in the world at their positions; John Mara and Steve Tisch got the right to hoist the Lombardi Trophy because they inherited the team from their parents.
The Michigan equivalent would be handing the Sugar Bowl trophy to Dave Brandon. This, thankfully, does not happen. Instead we get Junior Hemingway breaking down.
Juxtaposing a Michigan-MSU game at Breslin with the Super Bowl on the same day really drove the point home.
I am much more invested in the stories of people who have reasons to do what they are doing other than "I have a contract."
“I’m still trying to figure out what I’m missing,” he said. “You have these contracts. It’s called quid pro quo. We give you this. You give us that. But if they don’t give us that and we decide not to give them this, then it’s the worst thing you can do. I’m still struggling to understand that issue…”
This verges on "I'm not even mad, I'm impressed" territory.
He's a wide body, a space eater, and when he gets his space in the paint, it's his, you ain't a gonna move him. Seeing Bielfeldt and and MSU's Nix collide in the paint will be worth the price of admission.
But it might not happen, of course, as it didn't last night. A lot coaches (and players) would be afraid to turn down points if given the chance to score them.
You are right, though, that you cannot force the Giants to score. You could let them run down to the one yard line (if they stopped there), where the would at least have fewer downs (by virtue of having fewer possible first downs) with which to run the clock. In fact (to borrow logic from another thread and Buddy Ryan), you could penalize yourself again and again so that they were forcibly moved to the one foot line, where they could take three kneel downs before kicking. You would save yourself time by doing this, but not (of course) the full two minutes.
EDIT: As absurd as it may sound, could you not carry an opposing player to the end zone? An offensive player can't do that, and the whistle will eventually be blown if a defender is pushing a ballcarrier backward, but is there a penalty against a defender carrying a ballcarrier forward?
"All of the doughnuts have names that sound like prostitutes."
In reponse to your edit. If Bradshaw got down on one knee there is still no whistle in the NFL because he is technically not down yet. He would have to be touched while his knee was down. So once a defender touched him or tried to pick him up the play would be dead.
"Wasn't that Michigan drive just great. That's like Patton riding into Berlin." ~Bob Ufer
1. What's the difference between Roger Goodell handing over the Lombardi trophy and the President of AllState handing over the Sugar Bowl Trophy?
2. The President of AllState gave the trophy to Hoke, not Hemingway. Hemingway's speech came on the MVP trophy. Eli could have broken down like Hemingway did...but Eli doesn't know how to talk or feel emotion.
If you're looking for differences between the NCAA and the NFL, corporate sponsorship isn't a good place to start.
let the Giants score with 2 minutes on the clock, might it have conceivably set off a counter lay down? Giants only had 1 TO at that point if I recall. Woudn't it have been prudent of them to return the favor to the Pats and lay down if there were a 110+ ticks on the clock and the Pats had 2 TOs? Granted the Pats needed a TD (and maybe you take your chances with the D, which the Giants probably would), but that scenario almost ensures a longer possession than just having to drive into FG range. What would have been the "smart" play by Coughlin at that point? I suppose the Win probably in that hypothetical upon hypothetical wouldn't be close to what the Pats were facing, given the chip shot certainty of the FG the Giants were setting up for. I guess I answered my own question. Never mind.
It couldn't be the ballsiest call in Super Bowl history because the Pats weren't even the first team to do it. The Packers let Denver score a TD in 1998.
Amongst recent Super Bowls, I would take the Saints surprise onside kick against the Colts.
Thinking more historically, in Super Bowl X the Steelers elected to run up the middle on 4th and 9 rather than punt because they were afraid of a punt block and instead put it on their defense to hold the Cowboys out of the endzone. Just from the standpoint of making a decision that will backfire horribly if it doesn't work, that was amazingly ballsy.
A group going to next year's game should roll out a huge banner that lists all the Bama kids that Saban has messed with. If it's big enough, it wil get huge publicity across the country and draw attention to the hypocrite that Saban is. Kind of like the "Ruth did it with hot dogs and beer" banner they rolled out for Barry Bonds a number of years ago.