Game Overshadowed By Further Penalties Under Rodriguez; Holding, Pass Interference Also Suspected
BY MICHAEL ROSENBERG, FREE PRESS SPORTS WRITER
The University of Michigan football program under Rich Rodriguez has been accused by Big Ten Conference officials of numerous violations of the NCAA rulebook during the Wolverines' game against Illinois on Saturday, the Free Press has learned.
Some of the allegations were confirmed during the game by the officials themselves. When reached for comment, referee David Witvoet said, "Holding. Offense #77. Ten-yard penalty; repeat third down." The Free Press identified #77 as freshman offensive lineman Taylor Lewan. Lewan appeared to be unaware of the rules in an earlier media interview, saying he was sometimes flagged for excessive blocking and, "I don't even know if that's a rule."
The NCAA rulebook reads,
"Holding or illegal obstruction by a teammate of the ball carrier or passer applies to Rule 9-3-3-a: The hand(s) and arm(s) shall not be used to grasp, pull, or encircle in any way that illegally impedes or illegally obstructs an opponent."
But perhaps more troubling is the allegation of a personal foul that occurred during the course of the game. Though Rodriguez has said in the past that "we don't coach our players to do that," the infraction, again confirmed by Big Ten officials, occurred in the third quarter of the Illinois game. Personal fouls are considered a major violation of the NCAA rulebook.
In addition to those penalties already confirmed by the conference, Rodriguez's program is suspected of several other rulebook violations, accused by Illinois players who remain anonymous so as to protect them from possible repercussions. On one play, during which there was contact between a Michigan defender and an Illinois receiver, the pass fell incomplete and the Illinois player was seen waving his hands in a manner that suggested a penalty flag should have been thrown. Several parents of Illinois players - who will also remain anonymous to protect their sons from repercussions - confirmed the accusation, holding their hands to the back of their heads in disbelief.
When reached for comment, Rodriguez appeared calm. "We need to be more aggressive at times and that time it paid off," he said.
Michigan won the game, 67-65.
However, with the program already on probation following the NCAA's confirmation and validation of an earlier Free Press investigation that resulted in the heaviest-ever NCAA sanctions against the Michigan program for earlier violations already committed under Rodriguez's watch, Athletic Director Dave Brandon may finally have no choice but to fire his embattled coach. Brandon and President Mary Sue Coleman could not be reached for comment. But a clause in Rodriguez's contract allows him to be fired for violations of the NCAA rulebook, and with Rodriguez already on a short leash it is thought that Brandon and the Michigan brass have already had discussions regarding his termination.
How did you get the Freep's game story so fast?
And would like to subscribe to your magazine.
I wouldn't have been surprised if it was real.
...I thought it was.
If this is for real, we all knew Rosenberg was an ignorant ass, but this is just piss poor. He really wants to get RR fired, and seems to now be openly politiking for it.
The Freep needs to shut him down and fast.
That is all.
S'ok, it's the best compliment you could possibly have paid me.
Its like your reading his mind
I can't believe you posted a whole article without a link back to the original. I realize that we are boycotting their site, but we shouldn't repost unedited content.
What makes this so awesome is that it's only funny because we won.
And we won.
But as usual we did not cover the spread. Damn.
Is Rodriguez guilty of promoting an atmosphere of non-compliance between his players and the NCAA rule book?
Wait wait wait......this isn't real? It might be tomorrow morning
Wait wait wait......this isn't real? It might be tomorrow morning
This was awesome. Made my day.
This is what made your day today?
Well done my friend. I was panicked for like 8 seconds until I settled down and read 3 sentences in a row.
I was so afraid it would make me depressed.
I guess I was wrong.
The best satire takes reality and twists it just a little bit to create absurdity. That's why this is so perfectly done, it reads like a typical Rosenberg piece with all the snarky asides.
i was scared as shit to open this ...
the sad part is i thought it was serious for at least 30 seconds because well, it sounded like a normal freep article
FUC K YOU
FUC K YOU
FUCK YOU freep
Tell us how you really feel!
There's an idea. I live in the southeast now and I'd like to try this next time I renew my plate:
What should I tell them it stands for?
Great stuff. Also consider passing off more of your own opinion as information attributed to anonymous sources.
What a douche! lololololololol......Does Rosen"misquote" still have a job? lololololol.....Dooooooooouuuuuuuuccccccchhhhhhh baaaaaaaaaaag!
Under Rodriguez. I'll just bet that the same thing happened with Tulane and Clemson. Several Clemson boosters with knowledge of the program under Rodriguez recall a 15-yard facemask penalty, although they spoke on condition of anonymity, because they each had two first names.
It can't be a coincidence. We need an investigation.
I hope everyone at the Freep gets an eye disease that only makes it so they can see the colors Maze and Blue
I was scared to open it, pissed when I started reading it, then I was confused, now I'm laughing hysterically. I also had to explain to my wife why this was funny. Thank you, but I'm apparently still too tense after the game. Good work.
Well done, sir, well done...
mother fucker, i thought it was real at first too, i got halfway and i had to read the comments to see if this was fake haha
I think the Illinois player who hit Tate out of bounds should be given an additional penalty beyond just the personal foul penalty he received.
I think he deserves at least a one game suspension. Is there any precedence for this in the Big Ten?
Beautiful work! Watch out for attacks on the unethical message-board participants and their faux journalism in the Freep now, though.
Very creative. Just one question, what is this "Free Press" to which the article refers? I wasn't aware that a journalist body with such a name and with any relevance still existed.
I am just waiting for Rosenberg to write a Veterans Day article comparing Rod's regime to the Third Reich.
At first I thought this thread was going to be about the Freep reporting that RR would be penalized by the B10 for punching penguins.
Very well done, sir. I especially liked the single-line mentioning the actual outcome of the game. This is more like Rosenberg's writing than ... well, Rosenberg's writing.
Some people don't care for anti-Freep posts, but honestly, I'll never get sick of these.
i'm sure that if you looked at any other program throughout the country, they would also be guilty of these ncaa rulebook violations
Love it!. However, one point I must disagree on... The Freep is needed. Every puppy deserves a fresh one to do his business on each and every day.
So I had a 4-hour drive back from N. Michigan after the game and for some reason picked up the post-game chat on the station above. Could hardly stomach it, not for the haters, but the lack of intelligence in their hate.
Can anyone enlighten me to the RR critics who say his biggest indictment is that 'you have so many other Big Ten coaches hoping he stays' Presumably b/c he sucks? Where did this start and is it actually true? My bet is the other B10 coaches could care less either way. Too busy coaching their own programs.
A cheap, factless soundbite imo, but interested in other's thoughts.
Quit patronizing the freep!!!!
To a person on this site, and pretty much in Michigan nation, we all think that Sharp, Rosenberg, et. al., are the personification of a douchebag. Yet, people still are clicking their links.
Stop it immediately!