"Though I received no official response to these sophisticated and elegant tweets to the Illini Athletic Department, I would like to think that Beckman spent the evening prank calling everyone in Illinois named George McLellan and then ordering an absurd amount of hats off an internet haberdashery to hoard in his home's hat annex."
"Tonight we were reminded that Michigan is five years further down the road. Which means we have a long road ahead. The State Farm Center renovations start in a few hours and will run for three years. Let’s hope that when they’re complete, we’re Michigan."
Oh, I'm an idiot.WCBN's fundraising drive lasts until March 20th, which is… um… four days ago. I said I'd give them a plug. This is it. Their online donation form is still up, though, so this isn't completely useless.
Pads! OH MY GOD IT'S SPRING PRACTICE VIDEO
Excellent savvy on the part of the athletic department to defuse any panic about Michigan wearing white pants this fall. Someone in the department has learned about the internet.
The Wolverine Blog has some spring practice content up, with five guys with the most to lose and most to gain. Maize and Blue Nation has had "whispers come across his desk" that may be random unreliable internet stuff but include reassuring comments like "Craig Roh three point stance" and "Thomas Gordon seeming competent at safety."
Think about that bit: Thomas Gordon seems like the most likely of what will be three or four moved linebackers to be a competent free safety due to his size, speed, and high school position. He was a strongside linebacker last year. Cam Gordon is a strapping guy headed for 230 pounds everyone thought would play linebacker even when he was a receiver. He started at free safety. This year we might (will probably?) see those guys switch positions.
/shakes fist at sky
The second-dumbest thing. Apparently I'm not done with people who say stupid things about Jalen Rose, but what am I supposed to do when Jason Whitlock writes this?
And if it’s clear Rose and Jimmy King were speaking in past tense, there would’ve been no need for Rose to send Hill and Jay Williams tweets before the documentary aired explaining that’s how the Fab Five felt 20 years ago.
Or it was clear but since it was not explicit Rose made it so before the damn thing ever came out, for all the good that did. Whitlock then goes on with his usual condescending What Ails Black Folk crusade because that's what he does. Here's Dave Zirin at the Nation—high up on the list of websites I never thought I'd have cause to link to on MGoBlog—annihilating Whitlock*.
I love that Jack Sharp looks like he could be Purdue's head coach. I don't love that a guy closely associated with the University is essentially Glenn Beck.
*[This is not an endorsement of the Nation's opinion on anything other than Jason Whitlock. I still remember that back in the day the most ludicrously communist Daily columnist during my time as an undergrad got a coveted internship there that he used to write more ludicrously communist pieces. It is a silly place.]
Burlon — out of the lineup for both games this past weekend at Joe Louis Arena — has been plagued by an “inflamed esophagus,” according to Michigan coach Red Berenson.
The junior defenseman has been in and out of the hospital since last Monday when he came down with strep throat. He’s had trouble eating solid food and has lost about 15 pounds over the past week.
Also in that article: Shawn Hunwick is having a mid-life crisis because he never wants to leave Michigan. His first action is taking a fifth year. Suggestion: master's degree. It worked for me.
Gotta collect 'em all. Ray Vinopal's transfer destination is Pitt, which is indeed closer to home—it's about an hour—and also features a bunch of Michigan's former coaches, including his position coach. Because this is a Michigan safety we're talking about he will become an All-American now that he's free from the clutches of Angry Michigan Safety-Hating God.
Even more hockey recruiting. The United States of Hockeychecked out a recent NTDP game and reports back on goalie John Gibson, amongst others:
John Gibson: The big goaltender looks like a pro goalie when he plays. He takes up so much net whether he’s standing up or on his knees. During the shootout, when he came out to challenge, I think the net basically disappeared. When I say the moves Gaudreau and Girgensons put on Gibson were nasty, I mean… just filthy. The big guy made 35 saves, including several key stops late.
I asked one of the team staffers if Gibson was excited about his season and his commitment to Michigan. The reply, “Gibby doesn’t get excited about much of anything.”
So Gibson is the exact opposite of Shawn Hunwick. Warning: don't read the bits on Rocco Grimaldi. They will make you sad he is headed for North Dakota.
Kenpom is the bible. Pete Thamel's NYT article on how accepted Kenpom is amongst college basketball coaches makes me wonder what it will take for halftime statistics to feature offensive rebounding percentage. The brilliant/frustrating thing about tempo-free numbers is that they're stupidly easy to explain (with the admittedly vast exception of "offensive rating"): we took this number, and then we divided it by something. This allows coaches to say things like this:
“I’m not a math geek,” said the George Mason assistant coach Chris Caputo, who does all of the team’s scouting reports. “But it gives me a quick statistical synopsis of who they are before we watch tape and personnel. What do they do well? What are their strengths and weaknesses? Where do their points come from? It’s a snapshot of relevant statistics.”
No football or baseball coach that confesses he looks at advanced metrics would start off his statement "I'm not a math geek," or at least they'd obviously be lying. With Kenpom it's plausible Caputo just knows how to divide.
The frustrating part about all this is how stubborn the broadcasting establishment is about incorporating this stuff. I'm tired of seeing "FG%" next to "three pointers" and trying to figure out on the fly what each team's percentage on twos is.
Ain't nobody there. Mmmm fluffy headline:
Brady Hoke reaffirms Wolverines' love for recruiting from Detroit
I'm not sure that it's really Brian's blog anymore. I mean true, he did create it and technically still has administrative rights to it, but it seems to have developed a life of its own, and is more of a collective now. Like the Borg. Resistance is futile and all that.
While I like the no politics rule of the site, it's inevitable that politics touches everything at some point... even Michigan sports. If Brian is a communistic totalitarion with a touch of monarchy thrown in for nepotisms sake, it's fine with me so long as he brings the sports.
It does cross my mind when these politcal bits pop up on the site, what are Brian's political beliefs? My guess is a middle-of-the-road pragmatist who veers strongly towards libertarian issues where they make sense. Someone who tends to vote republican but took one look at Palin on the ticket in 2008 and was forced to go the other way.
No, Hills comments are not racist because that is a separate issue. As Enlightened pointed out the spat between Jalen and Hill is a class issue, not a race issue. Beckmann's views drip with racism however. Calling Jalen a racist? For what? For saying that Coach K does not recruit inner city kids? No, thats a class issue and mostly true. Beckmann's labeling of Jalen as a racist, is racist in its own right. He does not take into account where Jalen was coming from as an inner city black man from a broken home. Jalen, and everyone else, saw that Coach K was not recruiting those kids. Now Beckmann does not want any other school recruiting them? How is that not racist? Beckmann needs to shut up and keep his own ignorant views to himself.
Beckmann needs to keep his own views to himself? Why? Because you disagree with him? How enlightened of you. Free speech for me, but not for thee. How do you know that he did not consider the source of Jalen's comments or beliefs?
Calling a black man an "Uncle Tom," even if it was Jalen's view as an 18 or 19 year-old of Duke players like Grant Hill, is a racially charged expression. The term usually refers to a black man who is subservient to or curries favor with whites, generally regarded as a traitor to his race. In my experience, some blacks take that insult worse than being called the "N" word. For Beckmann to interpret Jalen's use of that term as racist itself is not an unreasonable interpretation. Perhaps Grant Hill felt it necessary to respond for the same reason - being called a sellout to his race.
In the fallout from the Fab Five special, let's not forget that it is the excellence of our Michigan teams, not their racial makeup, that matters. I'm sure Frank Beckmann would agree.
While some believe Grant Hill missed Jalen's point (and perspective of an 18-year-old urban kid--and even if misguided, Jalen probably did at that time mean "Uncle Tom" as you define it) , no one really questions the appropriateness of his responding.
But Beckman has zero life experiences that would allow him to truly understand the issues of race and class from the perspective of Jalen or Grant. He decision to do so was, arguably, inappropriate for a representitive of the University of Michigan, was certainly simplistic and narrow-minded---and it is hard to avoid the racist implications of his comments.
Also, no one is trying to take away Beckman's First Amendment rights. He can certainly utter his nonsense at home, at the bar, or anywhere else someone will listen to him. But he's not necessarily entitled to use the airwaves to do so, and people may criticize him and even seek his ouster--another form of freedom of speech.
It's not about the First Amendment when private citizens criticize other private citizens. It's about tolerance of viewpoints different from one's own. For all the self-righteous claims of tolerance and "diversity" by U of M administration and students, diversity does not include diversity of thought, and only politically correct viewpoints are tolerated to be expressed. "He can certainly utter his nonsense at home, at the bar, or anywhere else someone will listen to him." Just not anywhere you or others have to hear or read about it, hmmm? That's the point. Beckmann didn't make his remarks during a Michigan sports broadcast, he made them in a forum expressly created for political commentary.
Contrary to your assertion, Frank Beckmann sure does have the right to express his views on air. Actually, he has an obligation to do so by his contract with WJR-Radio.
Again, I didn't say Beckmann doesn't have the right to express his views on the air. He can criticize Jalen and the Fab Five. That's also all right by you. But you don't like anyone criticing Beckmann's views--that is apparently intolerant. What kind of hypocrisy is that?
And yea, the same way I don't believe Jersey Shore should (as opposed to be allowed to) be on the air, I don't want Frank having a show where he continually displays his ignorance and embarrasses the University of Michigan.
A lot of the Fab Five hatred is related to race, but the Duke controversy in particular is about class. Jalen felt (and I bet quietly feels) that Coach K and Duke in general is not particularly interested in kids from a lower class background.
Thats a good distinction to make. Jalen's comment in the documentary about his feelings is a class issue and not a race issue.
However, Beckmann's comment is definitely a race issue. The fact that he hopes Michigan or any other university never has a group like the Fab FIve is ridiculous. Yeah, 5 confident black men did not go over well with Beckmann or Wilfred Brimley.
So Frank Beckmann doesn't like confident black men? Boy, it's a good thing he doesn't work with any of them in the Michigan athletic department. /s
That's just a ridiculous statement.
Frank's comment appears to me to reflect a view that many people shared and disliked about the Fab Five, having nothing to do with their skin color. They were brash, arrogant, publicity-seeking, and had a blatant swagger that was not characteristic of a Michigan athlete: get the job done and act like you've been there before, like Glen Rice, Rumeal Robinson, Terry Mills and others on the 1989 NC team. The Fab Five were completely opposite of many great Michigan athletes, including one Denard Robinson. It's not about their race; it's about their behavior.
I don't know that the Duke controversy is solely about class. Class and race are often interrelated. More importantly, the media narrative at the time was pretty racist. It wasn't overt -- they didn't expressly say Duke is good because they are like white people and the Fab 5 is bad because they are black people -- but that was pretty clearly the subtext and the message. I generally think people view the world through race-tinted glasses more often than is warranted, but the racism here was hard to ignore. It's one of the reasons I hate Duke.
I just got it. You drop the MANN and you have Beck.
I was pissed when I turned on the radio and heard Beckmann doing the game. WTF, has Beckmann ever done a hoops game? I wanted Matt Shepard dammit. Beckmann whines about the officials even more than the typical whiny Michigan fan. STFU Frank and call the game.
and one more good reason to keep politics off the site. But to go all political and call a 157 year old magazine established by people who helped abolish slavery and backed Obama communist. . . [edited] betrays a certain je ne sais quoi and you don't either.
On a happier note, thanks for linking Zirin and old farts like Beckmann can suckit. (But don't you think Coach K's post-game comments not so subtly pushed the same trope?)
I think that statistic holds up to the eye test. I thought OSU and Wis were better than MSU and the rest fell pretty much how you would think. The only thing that maybe needs to be adjusted is that the Big Ten does not play a balanced schedule. I think there needs to be a factor for how tough your schedule was compared to the others and maybe throw out games against the bottom teams in each category. The Illini ranking was inflated due to our game against them and their ability to bludgeon the dregs of the conference. MSU avoiding OSU was huge. Iowa played a gauntlet etc...
The sad part is, if you listen to Beckmann's radio show, those comments pretty much play directly to his base. As a person decidedly -not- in that base groupthink, I just try to ignore everything Beckmann that isn't "TOUCHDOWN MIICCCH-IGAN!"
I think we're closer than Brian makes it sound to tempo-free statistics breaking into "mainstream" commentary, especially in basketball. Several weeks ago, ESPN hired Dean Oliver as "director, production analytics" (Source). Dean Oliver is basically the godfather of advanced statistical analysis in basketball and author of Basketball on Paper. I learned about Oliver because Pomeroy relied heavily on his work back when he (Pomeroy) started the blog (and still does).