Previously on the Sights of series:
2016 NCAA Hockey Tournament
2016 Football at Rutgers
For your read-along listening pleasure, Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald by Gordan Lightfoot. Beware when the gales of November come early.
(As always, right click -> view image to make it bigger. All photos are by myself, Patrick Barron, and Bryan Fuller)
The legend lives on from the Chippewa on down
Of the big lake they called 'gitche gumee'
The lake, it is said, never gives up her dead
When the skies of November turn gloomy
With a load of iron ore twenty-six thousand tons more
Than the Edmund Fitzgerald weighed empty
That good ship and crew was a bone to be chewed
When the gales of November came early
The ship was the pride of the American side
Coming back from some mill in Wisconsin
As the big freighters go, it was bigger than most
With a crew and good captain well seasoned
Concluding some terms with a couple of steel firms
When they left fully loaded for Cleveland
And later that night when the ship's bell rang
Could it be the north wind they'd been feelin'?
The wind in the wires made a tattle-tale sound
And a wave broke over the railing
And every man knew, as the captain did too,
T'was the witch of November come stealin'
The dawn came late and the breakfast had to wait
When the gales of November came slashin'
When afternoon came it was freezin' rain
In the face of a hurricane west wind
Fellas, it's too rough to feed ya
Fellas, it's been good t'know ya
And the good ship and crew was in peril
Came the wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald
When the waves turn the minutes to hours?
If they'd put fifteen more miles behind her
They may have broke deep and took water
Of the wives and the sons and the daughters
The islands and bays are for sportsmen
Takes in what Lake Erie can send her
With the gales of November remembered
In the maritime sailors' cathedral
For each man on the Edmund Fitzgerald
Of the big lake they call 'gitche gumee'
When the gales of November come early
Previously in the 'Sights of' series: Sights of the NCAA Hockey Tournament
This past Saturday was the first battle in the War on Rutgers. Thousands of wolverines made the trip and, well, quite frankly all of them made it out alive. Actually, is there still even a war? At some point when your band starts playing the opposing team's fight song, you have to declare an unconditional surrender. This was Helms Deep if the Rohirrim never arrived. Many Michigan fans predicted a blowout and, with the uncertainty of a category 4 hurricane sweeping the East coast, decided to stay home. But I made the trek and snuck behind enemy lines to bring you the inside scoop on the war coverage.
(Right click -> View image to make pictures larger)
Also click HERE to see my full album on the MGoFlick page!
Welcome to the birthplace of college football
Walking around the encampments- er, the tailgaters, was definitely a positive experience. Within 10 minutes I was invited to a pig roast.
Unfortunately I did not have time to partake, but it looked delicious:
Post-game look at the Rutgers offensive line?
Most tailgates looked just like any other Big Ten tailgate that I've seen. Most Rutgers fans were very friendly and shared their space with the many Michigan fans that were there. You could feel a sense that they kind of knew what would happen but wanted to make the best of it anyways. But wait what's this?
I don't know what an Ash Woopin' is but I'm sure it's harmful for the person doing the Ash Woopin'
Michigan fans were not in short supply. They predicted 500-600 just at the alumni tailgate.
This guy storms the field on this stallion after Rutgers scores touchdowns. The only other time I saw the horse was when Rutgers "scored" the pick-six and the knight was ready to do his charge. Following the review, they put the horse away.
Fire makes everything cooler, I guess
When the knight dismounted his steed, he came down to the field to fire up the crowd.
Look at how fired up they are.
Let's wander over the other side of the field, shall we?
You know the game is out of control when you have an entire section cheering for a photographer.
Why this tropy was here I'm not entirely sure. Maybe they were paying tribute to their claimed 1869 National Title.
Bold prediction: this is the only time this trophy will be on this field.
Many of you may have heard about the Rutgers cannon. It fired before the game, after the game, and right before they reviewed the Rutgers pick six. But after every Michigan touchdown, Michigan fans began chanting "SHOOT THE CANNON!"
They were not amused.
The game in summary:
In a move that I'm sure was able to win over many of the couple hundred recruits that came to visit, the Rutgers band began to travel around the stadium playing 'The Victors' for the many Michigan fans in the stadium.
And by the 4th quarter, most of the student section had disappeared:
The Army ROTC push-up board did not get used.
When the dust settled, only one army remained:
And they're not done yet.
I started photographing Michigan sports in Spring of 2012. I had just finished my Sophomore year of Undergrad in engineering and wanted to do something with my photography skills, so I joined the Michigan Daily. The 2011-2012 season was Michigan's 22nd consecutive trip to the NCAA tournament. Photographing this 2012-2013 team was obviously a very special opportunity for me and one that I was excited about.
But apparently I was a curse that led to a three year NCAA tournament drought. Or at least many have told me this. Sorry, guys.
But this weekend the curse was broken as Michigan played in the NCAA Tournament in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Since most Michigan could not make the trip, I wanted to make a Diary that gives a feel for what the atmosphere was like. Away games/environements have always intrigued me. Unfortunately I chose the last game of the year to start one but better late than never, right?
The Notre Dame game was a fun preview of the years to come. Fans of both teams travelled well. When teams took the ice, it was a battle of the bands with the fight songs. "Let's Go Irish" chants were drowned out by "Let's Go Blue" chants, and vice versa.
Not every Michigan player dressed, but they did all travel. As a fan, it's tough watching your team go into overtime because there's really not much you can do. As a player though, it must be much worse. They looked far more nervous than any fan (as seen above).
Unlike the Big Ten Tournament, plenty of Michigan fans showed up to cheer on the team. This was to be expected, as Ann Arbor to Cincy is about 4 hours, versus 12 hours to St. Paul. The stadium still wasn't full and the upper deck was tarped off, but there were certainly enough there to create a decent atmosphere.
The hockey bands really gave the college sports atmosphere. The arena still played RAWK MUSIK (actually it was a lot of hip-hop mash-ups that they probably pulled from a YouTube playlist), but hearing Notre Dame and Michigan's fight songs back-to-back was a refreshing sound. Even the Northeastern band traveled quite well (as did their fans, though to a lesser extent than all the other teams).
Speaking of Northeastern, they were thoroughly handled by North Dakota. Despite scoring the first goal, they found themselves down 5-1 in the 2nd period to UND. The above photo pretty much sums up the game.
Steve Racine played lights out all weekend. This save above was a wrap-around by Notre Dame in overtime that was saved by the blade of Racine's skate.
Moments later, Michigan scored, players celebrated, and Notre Dame fans went home looking sad.
The next day, North Dakota fans arrived with strong energy. Though they are now officially the "Fighting Hawks", "Let's Go Sioux" chants echoed all game long.
Also in attendance: Michigan AD Warde Manuel. I don't think he changed facial expressions once all game.
Sioux Fighting Hawks had some supporters from Ohio, too, celebrating in front of some Miami (Oh) and OSU fans. Something tells me they were cheering more for not-Michigan rather than North Dakota.
"Fighting Hawks" doesn't appear to be catching on any time soon.
If you're looking for a moral victory, after the North Dakota player scored he got taken out by the ref. So there's that.
It took until the 3rd period for North Dakota to take a 4-2 lead in this game. They dominated most of the pace and you couldn't help but feel that it was only a matter of time until they went ahead. In the first period, shots were 22-5 in favor of North Dakota. The players received a lot of support as they left the ice, Racine especially.
Red Berenson gave no mention of retirement at his press conference. He did applauded the efforts of his seniors, and praised the efforts of North Dakota. Could this have been his last post-game press conference?
If you were unable to attend the tournament in Cincinnati, I hope this has helped give you a feel for what it was like! A thrilling overtime win over Notre Dame and 2.5 periods against one of the best teams in the country made for an exciting weekend of hockey. (This is also my first Diary post so go easy on me!) I'd like to make more of these when I travel to away games in the future.
See you in the Fall!