to play football, not to play trumpet
(Yes, this is bad)
Saving you all the legwork of checking the aptly titled APR of 928 message board post, these graphics demonstrate the disappointing numbers that, yes, have existed before a guy from West Virginia showed up. While nearly every school in the Big Ten has seen a steady increase of APR (or at least plateaud as is the case of Iowa), Michigan has faced a freefall from numbers that really weren't all that great to begin with. For example, Michigan's highest APR (958 in 05-06) would be 1 point greater than PSU's worst season.
The obvious goat of the Big Ten is Minnesota, with the only penalties of any team in the Big Ten in 2007-2008 (3 scholarships). Northwestern's numbers are mind blowing and also shoot to hell any developed belief that "perhaps the APR is bad because the academics at Michigan are a bit better."
Numbers can be improved upon, obviously. Purdue is an excellent case as seen above: despite ridiculous numbers the first four years, their numbers have increased and taken them out of Kenny Loggins territory. If they continue to post poor numbers, Michigan will find themselves without health insurance because they live in the Danger Zone.
In short, Captain Obvious held a press conference to notify the public that this needs to improve. OSU has had top caliber talent for the entirety of this stretch and still managed to average over 950. A high amount of attention will have to be paid on player eligibility and STOPPING THE DAMN TRANSFERS. BUILD A WALL. SNIPER ON THE UNION ROOF. WHATEVER.
I wanted to create a post that could operate as the first in a series of of entries that highlighted those commit/transfer decisions that had significant career/financial ramifications. This is not intended to be a "LOL you didn't go to UM and now you SUXORZ" but, rather, the beginning of a log of those who fans wanted to suit up in maize and blue and who chose less green pastures.
It will be updated, with a write-up, based upon comment suggestions. As such, I really encourage people to write-in so these become Community pieces and not a GB piece.
Because the flashiest always goes first
By his own admission, Pryor likely missed out on the chance to make tangible history when he chose to go tOSU. While he has been to a bowl game every year, it was Denard, not Pryor, who broke the NCAA record books this season. Meanwhile, back at the Columbus ranch, TP (T Profit for short) has put up decent numbers in an offense that for all intents and purposes limits him and forces him to utilize his weakest abilities (pocket passing).
Minor occurrences have taken place featuring Pryor in bars or flashing jewelry/cars that have failed to allow allegations by Clarett to disappear regarding OSU recruitment/player care. What's more, maturity issues on the field and off have raised questions about his leadership abilities at a school that, for all intents and purposes, does not have a historical encyclopedia of "field generals" (with some exceptions, such as Laurinaitis, Spielman, etc.)
Slowly languishing in Tressel ball over three years, Pryor has failed to live up to perhaps unfairly tall expectations. Now that a garage sale of fail has led to him being suspended for the first games, the Buckeye passer appears set to either go into the NFL draft with an unheralded college season in which he was not named to the All Big Ten team (and perhaps sit around for a year during labor talks) or play a shortened schedule with OSU sitting potentially at 3-2 before he comes off the bench. In short: has failed to become the next/best Vince Young.
I made my way to Ann Arbor with the wife in tow to spend the day discovering two things:
- even in the summer there's STILL no parking available in the residential Hill (Thayer) area
- the renovations are gorgeous and I will likely never see them again
While I have yet to see any sort of release with a number estimate of how many toured the facilities, I know there was at least 2-300 people for the hour I was there. Times 12 and you have to guess 5-10k people wound up touring the new suites and club seats, which is an accomplishment in of itself on a Wednesday afternoon.
- The suites are everything someone who could afford them would want and possibly more. With framed and autographed memorabilia as well as easily accessible bathrooms and food options, I highly doubt any millionaires will be griping about their donation and ticket prices.
- The suites are also stunning in their closeness and accessibility (poor word choice) to the field. Rather than feeling distant and disconnected from play, the suite view feels like an upper-level basketball ticket seat.
- No opinion as of yet on hallway/dining area sound but it appears there will be about 9000 20-30" flatscreens throughout the suites and club seats to make sure a moment is not missed.
- My Sparty wife was awestruck by the renovations and was jealous of the effort. While she admittedly has limited interest in football, she did say she was impressed by the melding of history and modern day amenities.
- There is limited/no difference between the two levels of club seating aside from the overhang on 4. Spent less than 5 minutes on the 3rd floor because it was a rehash.
If for some bizarre reason anyone wants the original size of these, I'd be happy to email them out. Shot with my Evo
Let me preface this post with the following: I grew up a Michigan fan. I did not know how much I loved the U until I attended in 2002 and how much of an awkward choice it would be to graduate in three years but for the fact that, upon graduating, I missed it so much. Further, I'm applying in about two weeks to return to Ann Arbor for grad school (x3) in order to finish my education where I began and where I loved.
I have never cared this much about Michigan football.
To the point it is honestly screwing up my life.
When Rich Rodriguez was hired I was ambivalent and optimistic. He had the pedigree and he is a strong voice, albeit a bit "don'tchaknow." 3-9 was rough but I got over it looking at the team and looking at the uphill battle the coaches (and team) faced in such a year.
4-0 was amazing. The pep in my step and all-around joy of seeing success was amazing. Somewhere in there I realized that by hitting bottom I had suddenly cared so much more about this team. Somewhere in the failure and ridicule I realized I too had put myself against the wall and decided I would love this team more than I had before, when it was easy.
"ALL IN" seemed a bit easy to fall into when your team goes 3-9 and you've followed long enough. It was more a rallying cry (publicly) for those fans who enjoyed the ride and had been dissuaded. PR at its best. But I was happy to see myself (and the alumni) fall in. Because this is Michigan. And we love Michigan.
Somewhere after the MSU game my heart broke. I had an awful 3-4 days and was kind of scared if it was just a dose of genuine, gosh darnit depression or if I cared that much. The Iowa loss clarified. I love this team so damn much that their loss genuinely loses me. I can only fathom what it means to be a player. But as the losses have piled up, it, to a degree, has become closer of an experience.
God am I happy for Brandon Graham. Good for him. To avoid a year of professional football so as to be the voice of this team... to say that UM would beat MSU in such a down season simply because SOMEONE had to be a voice, regardless of rationale, to keep that team through practice and into the game... my local alumni group practically broke the bar (literally) when he scored his touchdown against Delaware State. Not because he had achieved a milestone (which he had) but for the fact he had returned and deserved every f'ing stat possible. For God's sake he should return a punt return and throw on an awkward down just because, dammit, he came back. And that means something.
The losses have been rough. I drove 20 hours to Michigan to spend my birthday in sleet and poor football watching PSU stomp Michigan because this team means something to me. And it was awful and my heart broke as the tackles did and Michigan fell deeper into the pit that has fortuitously developed after Illinois. And don't get me started on Illinois because I drank way too much to anger-f@#k the demons that emerged from that game.
But the Purdue game just happened. And the Defense under GERG really stood up... the first half. And the second half happened and there was freshman and youth and blocking the receiver when the quarterback is 5 yards past the line of scrimmage and is scoring andohmygodhewaspastthelineofscrimmagetackletackletackle. And my heart broke. And I was an a-hole to my wife on the phone when she checked in on me and I quickly scrambled to make sure this team, that I love, doesn't affect my personal life. The answer to making that not happen isn't clear. But not many answers are clear. Except finding out just how much love for this school... and team... is healthy. And in that, I guess it's a growing experience... much like this team is going through.
I guess why I made this diary is simple. For those of us All In, the road is narrow and uphill. The likelihood is 5-7 and the off-season is going to be months of looking at checkbooks and wondering "why did I spend $50 to drink at the bar and watch non-Siller shred us in November." This is difficult and not even close to the experience of overcoming kneeshoulderelbowhead like Forcier or any player is facing. But the fanbase has its own wounds. And they're licked (that's what she said).
I guess what I'm trying to say is the games have been lost and the faithful are hurting. The bandwagon who chose Michigan over MSU/CMU/EMU/GVSU/NMU/SMU/Toledo/FUOSU probably aren't as injured. But we are. And who knows if RR will be around in 2012. Or 2011. Or 20#$. But this will matter. Because you know whether sports mean enough to you or whether they're a Saturday. For me I have to find the healthy level to love this team. As I saw SEC fans cheer Purdue on simply because enough UM fans cared to show up, I knew this pursuit of glory despite bs would be uphill and callous. Sacking up is an understatement. But going Valenti on this team answers ZERO problems. We will find our own way to adjust but rallying around HR PuffnStuff will do nothing. Instead we have to find our own niches and work within them.
Not going to a bowl may be tough. Beating Wisconsin or OSU to go to the InsightPizzaKmartBestBuyOMGChuckyCheeseBowl will be epic. And some of us will deserve it and others won't. Complain all you want but it won't avoid fumbles, it won't avoid drops or picks or a game of inches. It will only help or hurt your ability to love this University.
As much as it hurts, I still love this University. And I will love this team. Even when it loses. Because I have to.
Because I Go Blue.
I encourage you to do the same.
Jay Riemersma launches official campaign for HouseWhat is an interesting twist, however, is what is included in his emailthatireceivedidunnohowboopolitics:
By PEG MCNICHOL
The Holland Sentinel
Last update Sep 14, 2009 @ 10:13 AM
Holland, MI - Former pro-football player Jay Riemersma wants U.S. Rep Pete Hoekstra's Washington, D.C., job.
He chose a downtown Holland street corner to announce his plans Monday morning, kicking off a day-long stumping effort in West Michigan.
Hoekstra's 2nd Congressional District job has drawn the interest of several hopefuls, including state Sen. Wayne Kuipers, R-Holland; former state representative Bill Huizinga of Zeeland, and Bill Cooper, a Spring Lake businessman.
Riemersma played for the Buffalo Bills and now works for the Family Research Council. He said he will fight against abortion, taxes and big government.
In his announcement Monday, Riemersma all but said "game on" while criticizing Kuipers and Huizinga for their affirmative votes for the Michigan Business Tax.
He promised to sign Americans for Tax Reform pledge Monday afternoon and told the crowd of nearly 100 gathered before him at the corner of Eighth Street and Central in Holland "I will never vote to raise your taxes."
There are a couple of additional important events this week for the campaign. Former University of Michigan football coach Lloyd Carr is visiting the district to campaign for me this Thursday in Holland and Grand Haven. I hope you can make it to one of these important events!Interesting to see Carr throwing in his hat for a former player. Disagree or Agree with the candidate's politics, it's a 'woot' to see another football player trying to follow in the footsteps of All-American Gerald R. Ford and make a place in Washington.
Oh and this quotable from a GR Press article I found while Googling Riemersma made me elohel
"The last thing we need right now is legislative experience," said Riemersma, 36.We beat Notre Dame. Woot.
But, for further understanding, use Michigan's own website. Apparently John Beilein is a big fan of football and considers himself a coach of football as well when he states "Mike Barwis' unique concepts and approach to strength training for basketball has been paramount to our success over the past 5-6 years." (http://www.mgoblue.com/football/article.aspx?id=111612) Stupid West Virginia people and their misunderstandings.
Delving a wee bit further, perhaps these stupid people coded Michigan's various websites when they, as previously noted, showed Barwis and crew to be the overseeing S&C body for Schembechler Hall. Schembechler Hall is not too open, however. It's open to specific sports. Just football? Nope. Football, men's basketball, men's hockey, men's and women's golf, and wrestling. Could Barwis be just working in a corner while wrestlers work with their own coach or, perhaps, does he work closely enough with these similar athletes, in the same building, with no Googleable staff, that he would train and assist athletes enough that he forced a "300-pound Mountaineer heavyweight to -- in MMA terms -- 'tap out.'" (http://www.cbssports.com/collegefootball/story/10900421) Oh. According to MGoBlue, "his assistants handle ice hockey, softball, wrestling and men's soccer. He oversees a staff that includes seven full-time assistants, one part-time assistant and 10 interns." (http://www.mgoblue.com/football/coachbio.aspx?id=105308) As such, they're allowed to help their specific sports single-handedly but by being their boss, Barwis is barred from being considered department-wide... how?
Supporting this notion, by the way, is the fact that S&C coach Jon Sanderson was hired to oversee conditioning for basketball and Olympic sports (http://www.mgoblue.com/basketball-m/article.aspx?id=180836). This would demonstrate coaches of big Division One programs oversee more than one sport. The final proving factor is that Jim Plocki is the strength and conditioning coach for the hockey program (http://www.mgoblue.com/football/page.aspx?id=28884). As his boss, Barwis would also be responsible for the hockey program. More than one department. What many seem to miss, when arguing this point, is that the football team exclusively trains at Schembechler Hall. During off-season, non-mandatory workouts, Barwis and staff, should they be seen exclusively as football s&c coaches and, through stupid interpretation, not be allowed to be there, would have to vacate the premises or stay in their offices, perhaps only coming out for a drink of water or to put NCAA-sanctioned horse blinders on so as to not see Robinson working out while helping a walk-on women's golf member on her squats.
Thus, at worst, the definition of department-wide applies to strength and conditioning coaches for all of a school's sports. This would be impossible for Michigan as they have sport-specific S&C coaches and no general S&C administrators. And no, the trainers are NOT the equivalent. At best, the NCAA's rule applies to the "football department" and implies that the S&C coach set aside to work for offensive lineman cannot regularly handle voluntary workouts where, surprise surprise, the offensive lineman "happen" to be showing up. Bestest case, this is all stupid research and the point is to not have someone who answers to a specific position coach not there as a proxy.