"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."
Hockey bits. Whatever doubt there was about Summers returning this weekend is just about evaporated. Berenson is "over 80 percent confident" he will be back:
"I thought he looked pretty good again [on Wednesday]," Berenson said. "He's such a free skater, and that's an advantage he has. And he's a senior. He's fit. He's worked hard in this whole rehab. If he gets through the next few days, he'll play."
As mentioned in the preview, I assume this means Lee Moffie gets sent to the press box. Hogan is still out.
I updated the preview with some extra television information, but if you missed it Saturday's game is now on Comcast so everyone should get it. Channels:
Dish: 432 and 436.
DirecTV: 640 and 668.
The game is also on ESPN360 and will be on ESPNU on tape delay. Hypothetical Sunday game would be on ESPNU.
Rothstein has a piece on Fort Wayne's preparations for the NCAA tourney—he used to work at the paper there—and asks whether neutral sites really work for the NCAA hockey tournament. In my opinion, not really. It's goofy to have the most important games of the season played in sterile, largely empty buildings, and moving to home ice for top seeds would help make the tourney less of a random number generator. Playoffs should strive for a balance between unpredictability and a satisfactory champion. The NBA has too little unpredictability, MLB too much. College basketball is just right. Single-elimination hockey is on the MLB side of the scale.
Comley says MSU was the last team out of the NCAA tournament and if Michigan had not beaten Miami, then MSU would have replaced the Wolverines in the 16-team field. He is not for expanding the current 16-team format, although I am in favor of expanding it to 24 because a couple of teams with automatic bids, like Alabama Huntsville, are in the field with a losing record.
As Western College hockey points out, 24 teams would be 40% of college hockey. It would be all but one TUC. The tourney is more likely to contract back to twelve than expand further. Hockey is already over the 25% mark, the maximum amount of tournament participation advised by the NCAA. Also, Comley's wrong. Ferris State is the first team out of the tourney.
BONUS: Junior defenseman Jeff Petry is a holy lock to sign with Edmonton. I'm hoping Tropp heads out the door, too, so that karma delivering a fatality to him is the last thing that happens to him in college hockey, but it sounds like he's leaning towards a return.
So how's that working out for you, being ornery? Ever since the Free Press Jihad started there has been a wing of Michigan's internet fandom dedicated to the proposition that Michigan should pursue a scorched-earth policy with the paper. They imagine David Brandon revoking press passes and locking anyone from the paper with temerity to show up on campus in stocks on the Diag.
A popular sentiment amongst these folks in the aftermath of Urban Meyer going all no-you-di'in't…
…at the reporter who quoted Deonte Thompson saying he was glad to have a "real quarterback" was "that's how you handle the media."
This, of course, releasesthehounds. (There's plenty more if you want it.) Two of those are from Bruce Feldman and Tony Barnhardt, adults capable of stringing together paragraphs. But the latter is from Mike Bianchi and is closer to certain local folks' speed. Prepare for the one-sentencing:
First Urban Meyer quits.
Then he comes back.
Then he takes a leave of absence.
Then he doesn’t take a leave of absence.
Now, incredibly, he is threatening reporters because one of his players was quoted … correctly?
Can you say Cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs?
Good grief, that Florida coaching job really is a pressure-cooker, isn’t it?
Urban Meyer has to care zero percent because he has a two-deep at crystal football, but it's an illustration of the cliche about not getting in arguments with people who buy ink by the barrel. It doesn't matter that according to people on the same beat think Urban was basically right about this guy…
other Florida beat reporters contend Thompson's quote was merely a poor, vastly overblown choice of words by a 21-year-old who will never be mistaken for Barack Obama as a public speaker, and I can tell you some of them think Fowler has had it coming for a long time.
…any time a reporter takes a shot from a coach, rightly or wrongly, it's time to close ranks and howl at the moon. Meyer didn't even raise his voice here; his "threat of violence" was phrased as a hypothetical from the start. And this reporter basically deserves his chewing out. But get pissed off at a guy and you'll never hear the end of it, no matter how righteous your wrath is.
So… yeah, Michigan's doing the right thing by sucking it up and smiling nice for the cameras. Sadly.
REFUSE TO LOSE. It sounds like such a simple, inspirational phrase for a team -- and it can be. But it also describes the man. He's a scrapper, and will weigh all of his options besides losing.
Calipari has done the most remarkable coaching job of this season, and nobody is close. Think about it: He convinced John Wall, Xavier Henry and DeMarcus Cousins to come to Memphis, inserted clauses into their letters of intent so they could go somewhere else if Calipari left, convinced Memphis to keep its Notice of Allegations from the NCAA quiet for three months, took the Kentucky job before anybody knew about that notice, then convinced Wall and Cousins to join him in Lexington. That is refusing to lose.
Can you guess who wrote that? It's freakin' Mike Rosenberg, the guy who's spent the last two years ripping Rodriguez for recruiting one kid who got in trouble, slightly exceeding allotted NCAA practice time, and a bunch of other inconsequential or totally imaginary crap. I'm too busy slamming my head into the desk to analyze this, so I beg you to head over to Braves and Birds for righteous indignation.
Etc.: I really wanted the Tebow Wonderlic prayer thing to be true because I thought it was hilarious. Football players pray all the time. They pray before games. They pray during games. They pray when they score touchdowns. They pray when someone's injured. They pray all the time. So Tebow wandering in and saying "HAI GUYS LET'S PRAY" so often that football players were getting exasperated at him was an awesome mental lollercoaster yesterday. So of course it is 0% true.
Kenpom's doing very well through the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament, but don't tell my bracket that. [shakes fist at Kansas] [feels douchey for bringing up his bracket]. Wisconsin fans want to demand more out of Bo Ryan. This is because they are insane.
It's pretty easy to figure out from the URL. Notice that this one has "-0" attached to the end of it. That's the system Drupal uses to differentiate between pages with duplicate titles (even more duplicates get "-1" and so on attached). If you remove those to characters from the URL, it takes you to a page from... 2007.
that takes me back. Terrelle Pryor features in the first sentence as a recruit, while there is a (brief) section about ron english as the big ten recruiter of the year after landing donovan warren. how far we've come....
I didn't think the article was all that bad. I think it acknowledges the fact that there's a lot of shadiness around Calipari and expands on that relatively expansively. It doesn't have the tone of an attack piece like the freep stuff did, but it certainly doesn't gloss over his issues. In a lot of ways, it is a tongue in cheek shot at Calipari that also recognizes his success on the court and at avoiding any sort of reprecussions from his actions.
it certainly wasn't in his cheek. He did acknowledge the fact that other coaches don't like Calipari pretty thoroughly, but any fair reading of the article would show that it's main point was "well a lot of guys don't like him, but Cailpari sure can coach"
"Before I could pull the trigger, I was hit by lightning, and bitten by a cobra."
I had not seen that Meyer confrontation before, but man that was pretty immature response. I did like the constant truck beeping in the back, and the way Meyer went 1 finger, 2 fingers, 3 fingers when he was rattling off why Thompson was a good guy and why the reporter was a bad guy for quoting him.
I always had a sense that Meyer was a jerk, but that is probably true for most college football coaches. Most coaches, though, know enough to keep their mouths shut in situations like this and leave grenades like this alone.
As for Rosenberg and Calipari - I don't see anything inconsistent in this article from anything else Rosenberg has written recently - crap is crap.
When you are the only coach in college history to have two final fours vacated, and they still display your coaching record on TV without subtracting the 30+ wins that Memphis had to vacate, you know you've got the world by the balls. If Calipari ever comes crashing down it will be sweet justice, but I don't see it happening.
On a side note, watching him coach this team is absolutely laughable. Cousins was on the bench today, and Calipari was screaming at him, and he just looked the other way. He got up off of the bench, talked to John Wall for a second, and then sat back down. Calipari isn't coaching this team, he's riding them. It is such a crock of shit, but you can't blame a guy for taking advantage of the NBA's terrible "you must go to college for a year" policy. That rule exists to make Calipari a god, and it is working.
Not sure the double-standard is as clear as you would like to think...
When it was discovered at Michigan it was dealt with and Fisher was fired, not given a bigger salary at a better program. Remember why it was such a big deal to make it back to the Dance after a decade away?
I love how Meyer walked away like he was done and then would come back to make sure the reporter knew he was a bad guy.
From experience, I can honestly say the reporter did about all you can when a coach is calling you out.
As much as most of us would love Rodriguez to go all jihad on the Freep, he is doing the right thing by being courteous. At the same time, he needs to learn to smile more when these sharks are circling, because that will just irritate them more.
Tell your father I'm here, and tell him the Lannisters aren't the only ones who pay their debts.
I'd like to know why people think the reporter "had it coming". Just doesn't make sense to me to flip out over a guy being quoted verbatim. And if he did "have it coming", then Meyer should've chose a time to flip out when it actually made sense.
I read the original article and it wasn't that bad. The reporter correctly quoted the receiver's response and it was lower down in the story. What? Should he have not included it even though it was said? I think Urban just forgot to take his Zoloft that morning.
I don't see how Brian or anyone could conclude otherwise. The reporter quoted him accurately, and didn't even try to make a huge issue of it by editorializing and hyping it up. Meyer was mad because the player quoted felt really bad about it, and went to him to apologize--but that doesn't make the reporter a bad guy.
"Before I could pull the trigger, I was hit by lightning, and bitten by a cobra."
I like Kenpom and think it is a valuable resource and used it some in filling out my bracket, but I don't think it did all that well. It went 24-8 in the first round. My understanding of the diary is that the 24-8 record was straight up. The 1 and 2 seeds went 8-0 and the 1 through 4 seeds went 14-2 in the first round. Throw those out and he was 10-6 in the competitive games. Good, but nothing all that noteworthy. Just picking the higher seeds would get you 22-10. Picking all the higher seeds, except picking the two 9 seeds to win in the first round would get you to 24-8. Now, if Kenpom's 24-8 was against the spread, that would be truly impresssive.
And I'm sure Brian is right ... The freep has endless ink (until it goes under), so it may be a losing battle to take them on. But still. Rosenturd and Snively (and their editors) were really unethical in their trickeration of the UM freshmen (I can't even recall who the two players were now). That was so weasily and slimy of them that they really deserve to be held accountable. I wish someone at UM would hold a panel discussion of ethics in journalism and use this as a case study. And I still wish RichRod would give those two slimeballs the old Lloyd evil eye treatment.
1. I don't know anything about the Urban Meyer thing, so I won't comment, and I'll leave it to others.
2. Yeah, we should all regard it as inevitable. We will never, ever, see David Brandon go all jihadi on the Free Press, or any other media outlet. That's not his style; it's not what he has built his career on. Nor will we ever see a U-M President (not Mary Sue, not Mary Sue's successor, whatever politically-liberal-ivy league-academic they pick to succeed her) take on a paper like the Free Press. They have too much in common, and that is never what University Presidents do.
3. By many accounts, Rich Rodriguez hasn't done well with the press. Many of The Faithful think he has been too nice; that he ought to give the press the evil-eye a la Bo and Lloyd. Many reporters think Rodriguez has been too glib and sloppy and, some claim, dishonest. I reject that latter view entirely. I think Rodriguez has gone out of his way to be nice and friendly, thinking that would do him some good. It hasn't done him any good at all.
4. As for bloggers like Brian Cook, and their acolytes like me, no such rules apply. People, some people at least, read what is available here. Much of it may be discarded; some of it will stick. At some point, to some extent, MGoBlog makes a difference. The Free Press is a vastly more powerful organ of influence than is MGoBlog. But the Free Press is slipping, and losing power and credibility. And MGoBlog is growing, and gaining power and credibility. The trend(s) will only increase.
The Free Press deserves a beatdown. MGoBlog is a perfectly good place to do that.
So, Brian, I agree; there's little to be gained from Rich Rodriguez rolling around in the mud with Drew Sharpton. And there's no point in David Brandon doing anything like that, either.
But there's also NO reason whatsoever for the MGoBlogosphere to let up on the RosenSnyderPress.
Not saying he's been perfect in dealing with the media or with outreach in general. But in my view he's been humble in presenting himself, while working his tail off behind the scenes. I like that combination.
If you went through all of Rodriguez's pressers...
...one by one, line by line, there is absolutely no doubt: Rich Rodriguez is friendlier, more forthcoming, more easygoing, more generous with information, than any Michigan head football coach before or since Bump Elliott.
I gave you +1 on your last two posts -- I agree with you heartily.
The fact that Rodriguez has somehow been hung with a national reputation as an "embattled" head coach ("embattled" was the exact word used in yesterday's Tuscaloosa AL newspaper report) is truly weird. It is the alt-universe of the Detroit Free Press.
my enemies list (Rosenberg, Snyder, Caputo, Sharp, Free Press in general, Ron from Ann Arbor, etc.) so I can call them out and laugh in their faces when RR gets this turned around and starts winning championships again.
"Meyer didn't even raise his voice here; his "threat of violence" was phrased as a hypothetical from the start. And this reporter basically deserves his chewing out."
You couldn't be more wrong about this. The reporter did nothing wrong. The quote was accurate, it was buried in a larger story about the Gators offense transitioning to more of a pocket passing game. The problem was that the quote got pulled out of the story and splashed all over the place.
Meyer came across as a boorish bully with no self-control. Your suggestion that is was 'theoretical' threat of violence is laughable. Since when does veiling a threat in a pretend scenario make it okay? Meyer did more than that, he threatened the reporters livelihood by threatening to block them from access.
Bottom line: Urban Meyer is a dick. Don't side with dicks.
being back more sure-ly, sure makes me very happy. Please let this be one of those times where your best player coming back makes the whole team better and not one of those times where your best player coming back makes everyone else go back to mediocrity. I think it will be the former. Also, remember how he's been good all year but not quite what you'd expect from a first-round senior? What if he takes the same step forward as the rest of the team? I'm actually giggling right now.
B&B paraphrase Francisco Scaramanga in the article. That alone makes it WIN in my book.
Rosenberg causes enough head-welts when you just consider how his treatment of Rich relates to Calipari...but causes even more lumps of sugar when you consider all the reasons he CAMPAIGNED for Beilein. Because, you know, he doesn't cheat. And now this. I swear, I'm not sure one can be that dishonest. I'm thinking mental breakdown of some sort.
It's fun to call Wisconsin fans insane, because we wish our basketball team was that good, but really Michigan fans are no different. If we start going to the Tournament regularly, fans will start wondering why we don't go deeper. If we start making runs, why can't we get to the Final Four; if we get there regularly, why can't we ever win the big one; if we do, and don't do it again, we're living on past glories. No? Look how everyone said we were standing in place and going backwards with Lloyd after he won the school's only Footbalm National Championship in almost all of our lifetimes. Including on this Blog. They're not insane. They're just fans.
As for Urban, I'm beginning to think you have to have severe personality disorders to be a head coach nowadays. I think pretty much all media are scum, and yes, this guy could have used the quote and cleared it up with a follow-up question, or speculation. But was it really worth that reaction? Good thing he wasn't my kid, really? If you're going to be a dick, you might as well go all out...when he threatens you, you say "coach, I don't think your heart could handle a fight with me". But that's just me...I'm a dick, and I get a kick about calling out bullies who would never back it up.
You're right, Calipari is great at what he does. The greasy bastard is spectacular at leaving every program he touches in trouble, recruiting 1 and done players, and coaching the most talented players in the country like a complete arrogant prick.
I love how his teams can never shoot free throws. It cost Memphis the title 2 years ago and it will cost Kentucky this year in a close game.
Karma is a bitch and some team will knock his ass down! ( I still hope the Pistons will win the lottery and land John Wall)
The Freep simply cops an attitude, says what it wants to say (whenever it wants to,) requires only flimsy proof and feels justified in doing so.
Does that about sum it up?
Gosh... I don't have a lot of problems with this because at least they're consistent.
At least with regards to Michigan. Apparently other institutions are treated differently.
But that's all good! You see they live by a important set of double standards... and just because they can do it. And really, that's the important thing here.
See? It's so simple when you look at things this way!
(for ND and Texas fans only - this was sarcastic. That means that I really don't feel this way, but I am trying to make my point . Sarcasm is the use of witty language (debatable in my case) to convey insults and scorn. Have a nice day!)
(for MSU fans only - This was funny. It makes you laugh. Go back and read the comic section now)
(for OSU fans only - See Dick run. Run Dick run. See Spot run. )
OK, I get that folks are amped up to attack everything Rosenberg writes. Yes, all of the abuse he and Snyder take for "Practice-Gate" is well-deserved given their shoddy/shady reporting and anti-RR agenda. Here though, Rosenberg is simply using sarcasm to call Calipari dirty, but a guy who wins games. Sounds right to me.
what you think it means. That article very clearly argues that Calipari is the best at what he does, albeit while acknowledging that many disapprove of what Calipari does and how he does it. No sarcasm to be found in any of that. Nor does Rosenberg even suggest that he is in the "disapproving" camp.
Contrast that, if you will, with Rosenberg's article on the Justin Feagin situation. Feagin was cited as evidence of Rodriguez's "win at all costs" approach, and I defy you to find anything in that article that defends or expresses admiration for that approach in any way, even if Rodriguez were to enjoy Calipari-like "success" with that approach. To the contrary, that article is nothing short of a warning to us dumb-as-a-post Michigan fans that we have hired a slimeball "win at all costs" coach who will surely drag our program into the gutter. Sarcasm? No. Hypocrisy? Yes.
Could Rosenberg have been harsher in his critique toward Calipari? Obviously. But I have no idea how you can read that article and think the author (even a jerk like Rosenberg) is in the "approving" camp.
And this passage doesn't employ sarcasm?
"And when those appearances had to be vacated, Calipari sold the NCAA on the idea that he wasn't personally responsible. (Rose, his star recruit from Chicago, surely had somebody take his SAT in Detroit -- Worldwide Wes's town -- without Calipari's knowledge. Of course.)"
"Of course" = sarcasm. Q.E.D.
I have no idea why you're bringing up the Feagin article. I'm not defending what Rosenberg has written about Rodriguez's program. Rosenberg is a jerk. He's been doing a hatchet job on Rodriguez since RR got to town. I get it. And I certainly agree with that premise, like just about every Michigan fan. But just because Rosenberg wrote this Calipari piece doesn't make this an approving article about Calipari.