“I’m way more comfortable,” Gardner said. “Last year was my first year starting, and it was rough, a lot of ups and downs, a lot of adversity. A lot of adversity I fought through, and I feel like I did a really good job of never giving up, never giving up on myself and my teammates. I feel my teammates recognized that, and my coaches recognized that, and I feel like that will help me.”
Site note! OH MY GOD UFR UFR UFR OSU OSU OSU. Yeah, happening. I am going to take it a bit slower because, like, I can. Half this week, half next week.
The season's end usually means a slowdown in December since football is over, basketball is often wading through thickets of uninspiring nonconference opponents, and hockey is off for big chunks (this year they're also super depressing!). Also, the batteries. They need recharging.
Bid. The big prize in the School of Kinesiology's auction goes off the board in just over a day:
That is signed by:
Anthony Carter (Signed on the #1), Charles Woodson, Jake Long, Chad Henne, Elvis Grbac, Zoltan Mesko, Anthony "A-Train" Thomas, Larry Foote, Brandon Graham, Jamie Morris, Rick Leach, Jarrett Irons, Jim Brandstatter, Adrian Arrington, Reggie McKenzie, James Hall, Bob Chappuis, Vada Murray, Morgan Trent, Tim Jamison, Will Johnson, Butch Woolfolk, John Wangler, Bennie Joppru,Stevie Brown, Chris Floyd, Glen Steele, Mark Campbell, Clint Copenhaver, Aaron Shea, Scott Dresibach, Jarrod Bunch, Victor Hobson, Mark Messner, Stan Edwards, Derek Walker, Greg McMurtry, Billy Taylor, Harlan Huckleby, Don Dufek Sr., Don Dufek Jr., Bill Dufek, Ron Simpkins, Phil Brabbs, Chuck Winters, Andre Weathers, Jim Betts, Carl Diggs, Eric Mayes, Rondell Biggs, Greg Mathews, Doug Skene, David Moosman, Ron Bellamy and Adam Kraus.
Zoltan, yo. You will have to be a big baller to pick it up, but most of the emails I get come from law firms, so… yeah.
Hayden Fry on Bo. This is pretty much awesome:
Michigan's long-running semi-rivalry with Iowa has always seemed to me like the most mutually respectful one M has, what with Bump and Fry and Carr pulling for Ferentz and whatnot. It's good to have them in the division.
Sacrifice Virginia. Basketball hits the court again tonight (7PM, ESPN2) in their second consecutive road game in the Big Ten-ACC challenge. They've got Virginia. If you're thinking that sounds like a pushover, no, not so much. Kenpom has the 5-1 Cavaliers 37th and gives them a decent edge (61%) on their home court. Michigan probably has a better chance than wobbly early-season numbers suggest since they're still heavily counting Michigan's pre-Maui struggles.
While Michigan's playing its first true road game of the season, Virginia hasn't played a major conference team yet. They've annihilated a couple of bad teams, lost a squeaker to TCU, and cruised by Drexel, Drake, and Wisconsin-Green Bay. Defense is their calling card—they're currently 8th.
Trey Burke hasn’t been perfect. He’s turned the ball over on 21% of his possessions, is shooting 60% on free throws, made one of eight threes in Maui and has the tendency to commit silly fouls. Despite those freshman mistakes, Burke has proven that he’s ready to play at this level. His quickness, playmaking ability and competitiveness have already proven vastly important through Michigan’s first six games.
Burke handed out more assists during the Maui Invitational than any player from any of the eight participating schools. He averaged 35 minutes per game in Maui, tied for the U-M lead, which serves as a ringing endorsement of John Beilein’s trust. The turnovers will decrease and he will find his three point shooting stroke (1-8 3pt in Maui) because he’s just too talented of a shooter not to. Burke is also the sort of player that can get a basket out of nothing – give him the ball in an isolation when the offense is struggling and he’ll make something happen.
“He’s got good size for his position, he’s athletic, he can shoot the basketball, and he can put the ball on the floor, get to the basket,” Ford said. “He’s got a lot of the tools that you sort of look for in a wing. If he was a better ball-handler — and it’s ironic, because his dad was amazing — that’s probably his biggest weakness. I think he (also) needs to get a little more consistent from 3-point range. “But I think he’s a pro.”
“He won’t need the money, and a lot of times that’s a big issue for players,” Ford said. “He’s got his dad, (so) he’s going to have access to more NBA guys giving him their opinions, which means he probably won’t get bad info. I probably say he stays, but I’m always surprised.”
Ford's plugging him in the same range Darius Morris was projected in as last season developed. As he mentions, money's not an issue, and this time around the NBA lockout helps. Last year the lockout pushed a marginal first-rounder like Morris into this years draft because a lot of blue-chips sat it out; this year those blue-chips will flood into the draft and push the Morris-Hardaway range back to school. I guess Burke fits in that range now, too. (Rivals basketball recruiting: you suck.) Sounds like Mitch McGary had a tough tournament over the last week, one that seems the draft consensus on him also in that fringe first-round range.
I'm still getting a handle on this edition of Michigan basketball, but it seems to me like Hardaway's increased ability to get his shot inside the arc is the non-Burke key. Memphis and Duke tried to shut off Michigan's threes only to get beat up on those overplays. Dylan notes Michigan's red-hot two-point shooting in Maui; Hardaway led the way at 27 of 44—a better than 60% clip.
Hardaway seems to have added a mid-range pull-up game that will be unstoppable since he's a 6'6" leaper. Just has to hit those shots. I expect the team's three-point shooting will come around to where it was last year. At this point Vogrich/Douglass/Novak is established as a floppy-haired Cerberus that will shoot between 36 and 38 percent collectively. Hardaway and Burke are the wildcards there. Is Hardaway the elite guy from the Big Ten season or also in that okay-to-good range? And how good of a shooter is Burke?
BONUS: Drexel's head coach is named "Bruiser Flint." Serious.
This is going to go well. They put Big Ten offensive lineman of the year David Molk in front of a camera and Tim Doyle asked him goofy questions.
Call me butterfly. I dare you.
Barely concealed contempt FTW.
Obligatory section on Meyer. He'll be some level of good. It's vastly more important for Michigan to have its house in order, which they seem to. Insert your preferred baseless assumption about Meyer's flakiness/health issues/lack of recruiting acumen here to make you feel better. At least we won't be one-upped in this department:
Rittenberg writes that if there's anyone who knows Michigan defensive coordinator Greg Mattison's system, it's Meyer. The two worked along side one another when Meyer was the head coach of Florida.
If Mattison stays at Michigan, perhaps Meyer could give the Buckeyes the advantage come next season, as OSU tries to avenge their first loss to UM in eight years.
PROTIP: if your assertion can be flipped 180 degrees and retain equal plausibility, find another assertion.
The one thing hiring Meyer does do is make OSU fans' assertions that they really gave themselves a tough punishment by firing/retiring Jim Tressel even more obviously crap than when they were originally peddled. The NCAA's reaction to a head coach lying to keep his most important players eligible, then lying again to get them eligible for a bowl game, is going to be pathetically weak even with the tattoos and cars and "charity" events on top of everything.
Countdown to resumption of normal activities in 3… 2… 1…
The neck, it sticks out. This year's most interesting recruit ranking kerfuffle is located in the general vicinity of Toledo, where Chris Wormley is the Ohio Division 1 defensive player of the year over Se'Von Pittman, Tom Strobel, Joe Bolden, and De'Van Bogard. Those four are all top 100 types. Wormley had M and OSU offers on top of that but still sees this massive rankings spread:
As Illinois' search for Ron Zook's replacement begins, a source said the program is looking at candidates that include Michigan State defensive coordinator Pat Narduzzi, Rutgers head coach Greg Schiano and Toledo head coach Tim Beckman.
Narduzzi's Big Ten affiliation and ties to Illinois athletic director Mike Thomas make him a likely target.
He served as the defensive coordinator at Cincinnati from 2004-06, overlapping with Thomas' tenure with the Bearcats that began in 2005. He was reportedly a candidate for the Cincinnati job that eventually went to Brian Kelly, who now coaches at Notre Dame.
Yes, this would be another disappointing mid-level Big Ten hire with names like Mike Leach, Kevin Sumlin, and anyone who's proven they are actually in charge of the thing they're supposed to be in charge of out there. Narduzzi is a defensive coordinator working under a former DC. That always makes me leery because you don't know how much of the team's success in their chosen field is because of the guy you're hiring.
Beckman would probably be a better hire: he's turned around Toledo, has a ton of recruiting connections in Ohio, and did establish himself as a BCS level coordinator at Oklahoma State. Schiano is not realistic. He has security at Rutgers and Illinois is a death trap.
If Illinois does go with Narduzzi that is both of Dantonio's coordinators out the door in a two year period. Not sure how much Narduzzi would hurt for the reasons given above, but it certainly can't help. It would be strange if Dantonio had more of a coaching tree in year five at MSU than Carr did, like, ever.
Added Ohio State tight end Jeff Heuerman: "Karma is gonna be a (expletive) for that little 'celebration' at the end."
Players said the controversial celebration -- you can catch a piece of it at the 34-minute mark of this YouTube video -- is something they have done after each Friday practice this year. Coach Brady Hoke said he was fine with his team celebrating their win that way.
"I don’t have any problem (with it) because it wasn’t disrespectful to anybody," Hoke said. "It’s something they do every Friday.
"No. It wasn’t disrespectful to anybody. It’s something those kids have done for 12 weeks.”
Ohio State, though, clearly was offended with the episode, which occurred in front of several players at midfield.
It led to Ohio State cornerback Brad Roby tweeting: "I will never lose to those scrubs again."
Odds are losing Duzzer would hurt quite a bit. He really got a lot of crap from the Spartan fanbase in 2008, 2009 and even some of 2010. Obviously this is the year he managed to put it all together. I honestly think the major improvement came from the change of personnel at Linebacker and the improving speed of the Defensive Line.
Anyway, we'll see where Duzzer's prospects are at in a week or two. I honestly think he would struggle at Illinois, but could succeed given four or more years to do it. He still gets chippy with the Media when they ask tough/stupid questions. Then there's the whole no head coaching experience. He has a lot of learning to do.
You mean like you thought Brady Hoke was? Just saying. I wouldn't mind any chink to the defensive staff in a rival who builds their team on defense. Not to mention the more important part that losing their former coordinator, and maybe Narduzzi too, would hurt- recruiting.
And I'm not sure how a failing CMU coach and the coach at Illinois trumps a failed CMU coach, and the coach at Michigan, but whatever. For a guy who gets so worked up at the media STILL taking shots at our former coach, you don't seem to have any qualms about doing the same yourself.
Personally I took it more to mean "Another midlevel B1G school makes a disappointing hire". Which is true. The Illini and such love to hire used coaches (ex: Zook), a coordinator from a higher tier B1G school, or go raid the MAC.
Illinois never has the guts (or willingness to pay) to go get Leach, take a run at the hot name coming out of Houston, Boise, BYU, or some other up and coming non BCS team. Their hiring chart boils down to the three things above and that is why they're mired in mediocrity.
When say you go get the MAC coach who spent his whole life trying to install Treselball or Lloydball, you get Tressel-lite or Lloyd-lite. Said coach then gets destroyed when they face Tressel or Lloyd.
I think the Houston coach would be a good example of a bold hire. But Leach is a retread with a lot of baggage. A good football coach, but I can see why people might want to stay away from him. But after all the big name guys didn't work out (or were never really considered, hindsight) Brian was ok with MICHIGAN considering: Mahlzahn, Venables, Chryst, Bradley (funny now, but who knew?), and Foster. All Coordinators. Not head coaches. So if Michigan can legitimately consider them, why not Illinois?
Again, if Brady Hoke was a former Penn State assistant would he be more attractive than those guys? I prefer someone with a 20-year timeframe who's proven he can assemble half of a conference championship-caliber team in the BCS to someone who, you know, hasn't.
(Funny add on, he's leary of Gundy, who's doing pretty well right now...but was almost assurdly correct that Okie St would have thrown money at him by the barrel)
Just saying be consistent on your viewpoints. Because you don't know what these guys are going to be like until you judge them on their own. Your MAC coach who is Lloyd lite...sounds an awful lot what people thought Hoke was going to be two seasons removed. And I'm sure Bo could have easily been described as a MAC coach who was "Woody lite"...but he did pretty well against Woody.
There's also part overrating Illinois as a program. I mean, if we say "Michigan can't get whoever they want", certainly they can't. Houston's viable...but who would leave Boise or BYU for Illinois? Their upper level on coach stealing is finding a Dantonio, some guy who really wants to be a Big Ten coach (and even then MD had ties to MSU; Illinois hasn't had the coaching tree of Saban, and ties to OSU's coaches). Their best bet may be riding an up and comer like the Houston coach and hope he's not just trashing bad competition. But they're not above taking a major coordinator and hoping he's the next big thing. Narduzzi could coach defense, recruits big time for them, but hasn't been a head coach, and may have temperment issues as the head guy. It's a risk. And maybe a guy like Mahlzahn is a much better candidate in that category. Assuming that he doesn't want to wait for something better than the #4 program in the Leaders division.
1) "Brian hates Brady Hoke is a broken record from you". He even admitted he was wrong about the hire this week and you're still trolling crap about it. Let it go.
2) Apples and oranges. Hoke at least had head coaching experience which was the point of Brian's paragraph - there are proven head coach successes out there that are being turned down in favor of a coordinator that may or may not be responsible for the success of his unit
3) No one will be saddened by Narduzzi getting hire at IL. As you mention, it will weaken MSU's defense to some degree, especially in a year when they're supposed to be the strong unit for their team. OTOH, it gives us all another reason to disrespect Il because they canned the unsuccessful but benign Ron Zook to hire an asshat like Narduzzi
1. You misunderstand. I don't think Brian hates Brady Hoke. I don't think he ever did. I think he took cheap shots at him out of hurt feelings, but I don't think he hated him, or rooted against him. I'm just pointing out that Brian's assessment of what makes a good coaching hire has been...suspect...at the least.
2. See my post above...he sometimes says he likes head coaching experience over success as a coordinator...and other times (like Hoke) he says he doesn't.
3. Can't really take issue with any of that. Frankly, from an Illinois perspective, I'd think they'd be more successful with an asshat, because they've always kinda been riding the borderline of dirty, have had their greatest success then. Just kind of a creepy program. Not that I'd endorse it, but I bet they would.
4......you didn't have a 4....but if I went over the top (me? never...yeah right), it might be because it's followed up by the already proven erroneous shots at Lloyd's coaching tree (like everyone was as successful as Bo) that was completely unrelated to the topic. It'd be the same reaction if someone was posting about it on the board and said "but at least they're not going after one of Rich's assistants, amiright?!?!" And that would be just as uncalled for, and would get people upset over it. Because it was a drive by cheap shot, and didn't have anything to do with the Illinois coaching job.
What makes you better qualified to assess a coaching hire? All you do is blindly praise Hoke and shout down anything positive about RR or negative about Carr. Remember, fat ass Charlie Weis won a lot of games early on too. No one can know how good a hire is until well after the fact.
I read it as more how Illinois should be trying to stir up the pot a bit given the utter lack of consistent success they've had for decades now, but instead fall back on mediocre assistants and retreads with meh records. I mean, when Mike Leach is floating out there and turned Texas Tech into a player nationally, picking a guy with no HC experience and a spotty record as a DC seems like a non-starter for a team trying to get back to the upper echelon of a down Big 10. And not to point out the obvious, but the defense they had was pretty good this year; the offense was the tire-fire, and that needs to be addressed.
Mike Leach is not a candidate for this or any other job. Mike Leach does not exist. Approaching a university president or a board of trustees with the proposal that Mike Leach be named head football coach is an overly complicated way of handing in a resignation letter.
In all his time at Tech, despite all the begging he did for interviews, he was only considered for one position. Washington interviewed him and apparently ended the intervew with the thought "we'd better hire Willingham before he gets away." They named Ty the next day.
And that was before Leach sued his university and his dean. That's absolutely terminal for one's career in academia.
Why does his name keep getting floated as if he were a viable candidate?
He reminds me of Will Campbell. Massive god-given size, strength and speed/quickness but with a less than optimal level of effort. If the coaches can maximize his potential, I think he will play like a five star. But if he doesn't put the work in, he will disappoint.
Zach Boren talking about class is an absolute joke. I don't know a lot about Meyer's offense but I doubt that he uses a fullback. I wonder if Zach will transfer or just try to tough it out. The buckeye message boards were talking about a rumor that Zach might move to linebacker to help out their depleted line-backing core. It will be interesting to see what he does. As we all know positions situations like that always work out. /s
"It's good to be in something from the ground floor. I came too late for that and I know. But lately, I'm getting the feeling that I came in at the end. The best is over." Tony Soprano
I love that the Ohio players are scorned over the celebration. With all of their bullsh-t over the years, they are the last ones to talk. I'm still waiting for Posey to complain about it and bring a sh-tstorm down upon himself. Nevertheless, tets see if those hypocrites can put their money where their Twitters are . . .
Love the chickenshit end of the Molk segment. Molk is already off line, and they run with "With all due respect Dave..." Pretty sure that Molk could execute a verbal reach block on that if they gave him a chance.
love how buckeyes and fans were all like "we own them, they lose every year, bo would be ashamed" and then, after a win they are all like "celebration? wut? how dare they! they should act like it doesn't matter."
the celebration was dumb, but so is hang on sloopy and everything else in the world, so shut up and play ball.
Biggest criticism of the Carr era IMO. He continually stuck with mediocre coordinators and position coaches (outside of Soup, FJack, and a few others). When he had a great chance to upgrade significantly after 2005, he opted for a lateral move in English and a downgrade in Debord. It's the biggest reason we were in a mass confusion coaching search 2007. He had no clear successor. English wasn't going to get it and I think we can all agree that Hoke just wasn't ready at that point in time. But things are looking better for former Carr coaches. Hoke is doing a great job here and English has turned EMU into a competitive team.
For a' that, an' a' that,
Our toils obscure an' a' that,
The rank is but the guinea's stamp,
The man's the gowd for a' that.
It will be interesting to see what Hoke's tree looks like in 5 or 10 years. Likely unimpressive IMO, because neither Mattison nor (probably) Borges will be moving to the head coaching ranks even though they are both a ways from retirement. So, it is the current position assistants that will eventually form the tree. All but Funk appear to be quite a ways from even a major program coordinator position. Eventually Hoke will deliver major coaching talent to other schools, but I'm guessing it will take quite a long time.
Praise be unto the Mattison. May his swag reign for a hundred seasons.
Thiat celebration wasn't like stomping on the big "O" at midfield, or planting a flag on the Ohio home field. It wasn't directed at Ohio. It was just something they did--it wasn't at all clear what the meaning was, if there even was any meaning. If the Ohio boys want to feel disrespected by that, go for it. Maybe Boren wants to get a tattoo of it on his shoulder so he can be reminded and stew over it daily?
Jeff Heuerman must be pissed. His dad was a Michigan basketball player, but he chose OSU over Michigan because he's a TE and Tressel uses TEs a lot and RichRod rarely does. Plus OSU always beats Michigan.
Fast forward to now. OSU has a year of scandals, Brady Hoke wants TEs galore and OSU just hired a spread coach. Michigan just beat Ohio State and, get this, they fucking celebrated about it.
Next year when OSU goes the whole season without throwing to a TE, Heuerman and Reid Fragel can sit and talk about how much cooler it would have been to go to Michigan.
It sounds like Brad Roby just got himself suspended, injured, or benched for every subsequent meeting of The Game. He'll never lose to us again, but not because they'll be winning! Also, "scrubs," really?
I thought the celebration would have been dumb if the ohio players were actually trying to shake hands instead of walking the other way with their tails between their legs. Maybe the celebration could've waited, but you know what? Fuck it. It's ohio. I hope they cried about it. I wish they did a MORE offensive celebration.
Also disclaimer: I'm not wishing injury upon Brad Roby or anyone. Just sayin' his statement will only be true if he's not playing.
Mike Martin told me he loves me. My life is quite possibly complete.
I have to admit I'm a little disappointed that the Meyer coverage was boiled down to a section. I loved Ramzy's "The Cleaner" article and I have to admit, I was kind of hoping for something similar with some perspective.
I remember it well - 2005 - the only UM-OSU game I've seen in person, there with my son who was about 9 at the time. Michigan had the lead, with a minute and change remaining, OSU had no timeouts, or just one, and UM had a fourth and three somewhere just over the 50 yard line in OSU territory. A first down wins the game, but Lloyd punts instead, preferring to pick up a sure extra 25 yards of field position. OSU storms down the field and wins, the key play being a long pass to a player who had stepped out of bounds and come back in.
OSU celebrates, and then as the Michigan band comes on, the Buckeyes march en bloc into the path of the marching band, block their way and sing one of their stupid songs to their section. (I assume it was Carmen Ohio, but I couldn't hear.) The announcer even asked them several times to get out of the way of the marching band and clear the field, but they just ignored him and kept on preening for their fans.
So, to echo a common opinion: Buckeyes are the last people who should be complaining about a celebration showing a "lack of class".
They mention that no one knows Greg Mattison's defense better than Meyer, but dones't that mean that no one knows Meyer's offense better than Mattison, the former D.C. of the National Football League's Baltimore F'N Ravens? It goes both ways...