"The amount of professionalism that he has ... there's probably not another guy in the country that would have handled it the same way," Durkin said. "He's not only one of the best coaches in the country, he's one of the best people. He absolutely has the respect of everyone -- coaches and players, alike."
"I don’t care if Jim Harbaugh is medically insane (he is), if you run the coach out of town who took your team from absolute embarrassing garbage-pail irrelevance to conference-dominating powerhouse in ZERO YEARS, you are not only stupid, you don’t care about winning."
Great. Let's never do this again. Because it's June and someone had a pretty good idea for June, the Big Ten Network had its own awards show. They named Denard Robinson the breakout player and possessor of the "most dominant performance," that his 500+ yards against Notre Dame. Michigan 67, Illinois 65 was Game of the Year:
There wasn't much competition—the other candidates were Wisconsin's 13-point win over OSU and a basketball game.
Something interesting might happen next time. The NCAA hockey rules committee didn't do much other than the bi-annual point of emphasis about this or that (this time around it's hits to unsuspecting players and diving), but there are four interesting things under consideration for the next cycle:
Four-on-four OT. This is "strongly" under consideration along with other methods to get a winner including a lengthened OT period. Shootouts will continue to be allowed, but support for mandating them is "limited."
Awarding obviously imminent goals if the net is dislodged by the defense. This may be in direct response to an event at the Big Chill:
Michigan State did score, though. They put in a power play goal when a puck deflected high off Hunwick and fluttered to the goal line to be batted in, but a nanosecond before that happened Hunwick fell into the net and knocked it off. While the refs got the call right, it was totally unfair: you definitely scored, you didn't do anything to get the net off, and you still get nothing. They should probably change it so that if your goal is imminent when the defense knocks the net off you still get it.
I'm in favor, obviously.
Dumping cages for visors. This is mostly to look as cool as CHL players. Red was in favor of this, IIRC, but I have a hard time seeing it pass in the safety-first NCAA.
Allowing hand passes everywhere or disallowing them entirely. At first blush allowing hand-passes in the defensive zone only does look weird but I think this is one of those rules that evolved over time to be the least annoying option. Allowing a guy on the ground to slide a puck to a teammate for a goal seems ridiculous to me; banning defensive-zone hand passes will just mean more whistles since players will do it anyway. The alternative—an ugly turnover by a guy not in position to recover—is worse.
Sadly, the hockey rules committee remains ignorant to the existential threat posed by too many offsides whistles.
Hockey now plz. That exhibition against a Canadian team is going to be the most exciting exhibition against a Canadian team ever:
Brandon uber alles. I hope to yell "I CAN SEE YOUR PORES, WHICH ARE CALM AND EXCELLENT PORES, LET ME TELL YOU" at Jon Merrill next year.
Yost yesterday, Yost today, Yost tomorrow, Yost forever. It's kind of a duh statement to make after Yost has just had its fifth renovation since the mid-90s approved, this one a 14-million-dollar one, but Yost Ice Arena is not going anywhere. Red:
“I think Michigan has been really happy with our building and our program for the most part and they’d like to maintain that at this point,” Berenson added. “I think they like Yost so much that they don’t see a reason to build another building. And so, if we like Yost that much, well then why don’t we fix it up?”
This renovation costs twice as much as the other four combined and with the new scoreboard is a definitive statement Yost is the future for the hockey program for at least the next 20 years.
This might be surprising coming from a guy who is militantly pro-tradition, but I have some mixed feelings about that. A lot of Yost's sightlines are sub-optimal and the weird overhang from the club seats/press box means the last few rows are surprisingly bad places to see a game in a 7,000 seat arena. That'll be even more true next year when people stuck in those seats are peering at the 90's-vintage tube TVs used as a substitute for the scoreboards. Whenever I go to Munn I think "this is a nice building even if it is filled with zombie monks" because there are many fewer bad seats.
I'm not sure if this is even possible but if they want to maintain the building as is without it being so cramped they might want to think about lowering the ice surface ten feet or so, which would allow them to reclaim those rows at the back of the arena and make the seating steeper to provide better viewing angles.
Let's destroy college baseball to save it. Man, Jim Delany has some crazy ideas about college baseball:
Perception says the Big Ten doesn't care about baseball. But no administrator in America has pressed harder to revamp the system. Delany's biggest ideas:
• Adopt a national start date in March or April and move the season deeper into summer.
• Devalue the RPI, which favors Sun Belt schools.
• Ditch the current method of national seeding and return to regional qualification for the College World Series.
College baseball's answer: No. No. No.
Then, last summer, Delany formally proposed the CWS move from eight teams to 10, with the two new slots reserved for cold-weather schools. Cold shoulder again.
“I've got no more proposals,” Delany told the World-Herald. “I'm out of ideas. What else can we possibly do?”
There is one alternative. Delany expresses interest — though he hasn't officially proposed it — in an even bolder plan: Secede from the South. Form a new college baseball division. Compete for a different national championship.
"Hey, guys, I know you think this is insane and want to spit on my grave, which is in Transylvania next to Joe Paterno's, but wait until you hear these proposed Division names…
wait for it…
wait for it…
this is so exciting…
Leotards and Leopards."
The article linked above follows that list of wacky ideas up with a lot of Southerners laughing at Jim Delany and telling him he's killing his conference by not allowing oversigning. Southerners reading this post may have just involuntarily done the "just like football clapclaplclap" chant.
BONUS WEIRD ITEM: Jim Delany's first presentation to the NCAA about equity in baseball was made one day before 9/11. #coincidenceithinknot
Etc.: TSN's final NHL draft rankings are a little more down on John Gibson than most—he's 37th, one spot in front of OHL defector Lucas Lessio—but surprisingly include D commit Brennan Serville at #60. They don't have a picture or explanation for this, but that's quite a rise from Canisius commitment to fringe second rounder.
is that sometime in the future, players, coaches, alumni, fans, and anyone else rooting for Michigan on that fateful day can someday look back at Michigan Football 5, 10, 20 years from now and say "Look at how much we've grown!" with a certain light-heartedness, a la TGS#7. I know we're all still hurting from M-OSU 2006, The Horror, The Reformation and Counter-Reformation AKA The RR Era, dongz punchez, and all the other ennui of early 21st Century Michigan fandom. Despite the awful defensive performance, Michigan prevailed, and the game set numerous Big Ten records FWIW. I think (and hope) that we will someday put the 2000s in their proper perspective with the 1990s, 1980s, 1970s, 1960s, 1950s, 1940s, 1930s, 1920s, 1910s, 1900s, 1890s, 1880s, and M 1879. We just need time, and wins, and B1G titles again.
FTR M 1879 finished with a 1-0-1 record, defeating Racine College and tying Toronto.
I worked and drove the Zamboni at Yost from '88-'92 (under then rink boss, Mark Renfrew..Big Al's son) and it's amazing to see how much that building has changed inside. I spent three summers re-painting the seats and seat numbers with former players like Don Stone, Jimmy Balantine and David Oliver. The years when the program really turned the corner. My freshman year, they only sold out Lake St and MSU. By '92, they were becoming elite. Great days.
The Ohio State Wisconsin football game reminded me of the Ohio State Michigan game back in 1997. Both had big backs for the teams that won, and both had punt/kickoff returns for touchdowns by the winning team. The only difference is that Michigan won their game being ranked #1, while Ohio State did not..
I love Delaney's proposals for national baseball, and frankly, softball should probably think about some similar things. The early start time gives a massive unfair advantage to the Southern teams, forcing Northern schools either to play fewer games or take month-long road trips.
Of course, this disadvantage only makes Hutch's accomplishments with the softball program all the more unbelievable, but it is still a gross and fixable inequity.
Now with 100% less South Bend, 100% more Washington DC.
Yost isn't perfect, but keep in mind, if we were to have a new hockey arena, it wouldn't be Munn-sized. Schools don't build arenas that size anymore. They don't generate enough revenue to justify construction. What would more likely happen would be a new, 15,000+ seat joint basketball/hockey arena, à la Value City Arena. As it was decided (correctly IMO) to keep the basketball team at Crisler, hockey was going to stay at Yost. They are likely a package deal in any future building.
Yost has some crappy seats but hey, that's part of the weird charm of watching a game in a 90-year-old venue. It has character.
I couldn't remember if I was more relieved we won the illinois game or angry that we gave up 65 points and 2 touchdowns on the exact same swing pass to leshoure in that game. What a wild season. Hopefully this year the D will start getting back to business.
Randy how are you going to pay for those fines? Straight cash homie.
Having no hand passing in the defensive zone would be really weird. At least for me. I take advantage of that at least once a game when I play. Then again, I sell out and end up on the ice to stop a puck a lot more than most people I ever play with, so eh.
How would they address the offsides whistles, though? I know there is a problem, but it stems from players going offsides. The delayed offside rule is meant to counteract this, but it still happens. They can't just eliminate it altogether.