Hoke was top notch at this aspect of his job.
For 21 years, this car won about 80% of its races. Nobody in Michigan could beat it, and it stood toe to toe with the best car from the worst state ever. Never once did Bo cut corners or try to cheat. He took pride in running a fair race. Not even two heart attacks could keep Bo away from his car.
Alas, it was time for someone else to take the wheel. Bo had driven the car as hard and as long as he could. He would still come around the garage every now and again, but he was giving the car to his brother, Gary.
Gary drove the car for a few years. He made a couple tweaks here and there, but for the most part, kept the car original and in tip top shape. He even added a "Best in Show" Award at a national event in 1991. Sadly, Gary got busted for a DUI one night and was forced to reluctantly sign over the title to the car. Bo's other brother, Lloyd, was now the owner of the family's prized possession.
It took a few years for Lloyd to grasp all that went into owning a car with such a proud tradition, but he finally did. In 1997, he won 'em all. Every race the car entered, it took the checkered flag, including the big race in Pasadena. That race was a nailbiter, right to the very end. It looked like the other car, a Cougar, might pull off the upset but it slipped its wheels and never made it to the finish line. Victory was Lloyd's and the 1969 Camaro was THE best car in the country.
For another 10 years Lloyd took care of the car but couldn't quite capture its past glory. Blemishes started to appear on the body, under the hood, and in the interior. The engine missed a few times, a rust spot developed in the quarter panel, and there was a tear in the console. These were small issues, but ones that could turn into major concerns if not addressed immediately. Lloyd loved that car but he wanted to do other things. He had been around the car almost from the time it was bought new. He was ready to walk away and let someone else take over. There were no other brothers to pass the car on to, so Lloyd put it up for sale.
A few guys looked but there were no takers. Finally, a guy from West Virginia named Rich flew up to Ann Arbor, checked the car out, and bought it on sight. He never even took it for a test drive. This guy was used to driving tuner cars. He'd never had a muscle car before, and he was going to do something radical: take this American Classic, which had been so successful for so long, and turn it into a drift car. He replaced the Holley carbs with fuel injection. The chrome wheels with raised white letter Goodyears were replaced with aluminum alloys and low-profile Yokohamas. The cowl induction steel hood was exchanged for a carbon fiber version that was lighter. He stripped everything out of the car that was considered dead weight in exchange for parts that were made of new-age material that would help the car run faster. It was a difficult and expensive transformation. A lot of races were lost as Rich waited for new parts to arrive. Unfortunately, some parts weren't available and Rich's mechanics couldn't manufacture their own. Folks who had watched this car race for nearly 40 years were disgruntled and angry. They wrote articles in Muscle Car Magazine about the fall of the once proud Camaro. Rich started winning a few more races, but after 3 years, it wasn't enough and Rich was forced to sell.
The new buyer was a guy who grew up watching the Camaro run in Ohio. He was even part of the crew for a little while during its run in 97. He was a big fan of the original muscle car and was stunned to learn that he could buy it. He damn near walked from his house to buy it. His plan was to restore it to its original glory. He wanted everything back the way it was. Unfortunately, as much of a fan as he was, he really didn't have experience restoring cars. He could do the bolt-on stuff - change the wheels back, slap on the carbs, bolt on the old hood - but he wasn't a qualified technician, and neither were he mechanics. They had no experience with dynomometers and other computer technology that could help them fine tune the engine. They wrenched on it themselves, slapped back a couple beers in the garage, and waxed the hell of out the paint that was blistering underneath. The car had success early on, but over the next 3 years, it would lose more and more races. The once promising restoration project was now stalled and going no where.
There was one buyer that everyone hoped would step up to the plate. He was Bo's son, Jim. He'd been around cars his whole life and grew up handing his dad wrenches and washing the car as a kid. He learned how to drive and eventually sat behind the wheel for Bo, winning a lot of races. He got so good he went on to have a successful pro career. After he was done driving, he joined a couple crews around the country to learn all he could about power and speed and handling. He started with old beaters that barely ran and turned them into competitors. He moved up from street racing, to the local tracks, and all the way to the pro circuit. He quickly became the most sought after crew chief in all of racing. People back in Michigan wanted Jim to come home in the worst way possible, but word around the racing world was that he'd never leave the pros. He was married to a lady who wanted to stay out west, and other pro teams were willing to pay him more. His kids were native Californians. There was no way, they said.
As we know now, Jim DID want to own that car. It had been a dream of his since he was a little boy. He had worked his way up the circuit in hopes of one day purchasing the car his dad once proudly owned.
Jim knows this car like the back of his hand. He's hired mechanics he's worked with before and who have experience rebuilding muscle cars. This will be a frame-off restoration. Every last bolt, gasket, belt, and hose will be taken off and repaired or replaced. If they can't find a stock replacement, they'll fabricate one themselves. They have computers, gauges, and testing equipment to make sure every single part can eek out another mile per hour. They are aiming for the holy grail of muscle cars: 1000 horsepower. It's going to take a reinforced frame, beefier suspension, oversized cam, tungsten steel push rods, a huge blower to get more air into a brand new engine block machined from a solid piece of aluminum. It won't happen overnight. Some parts just won't hold up to the pressure. Some of them will crack along the way. They'll lose some races, but from every loss another answer will be revealed about how they can get just 1% better.
Report: Mike Shanahan Wants To Coach Either Michigan or Florida - Florida, please
John "Doc" Holliday
Following that riveting Northwestern victory where Fitzgerald outdumbed Hoke, we took time to contemplate who would or would not make it:
Nuss won't make it - Year 2
Funk won't make it
Jack & Jill won't make it
and Coach Heck won't make spaghetti tonight
While you're at it, How about showing some support ????. 4 question marks. FOUR!!!! Dave Brandon is impressed.
We got to eat our own and re-hash whether we should have retained Gorgeous Al Borges while trying to make a case for retaining Hoke.
Daily Jim Harbaugh articles: 11/14 11/19 11/24 9ers possibly trading Harbaugh to Jets Shefter:Harbaugh to NCAA unlikely
BTW, Stephen Ross would rather have Harbaugh at UofM. OF course, it helps that his team is actually playing good football right now.
Larry Foote tells the world we have too many trust fund babies and that we should get back to recruiting the 'hood. Frank Clark takes it upon himself to prove Foote wrong. He was promptly dismissed from the program. Coach Hoke released a statement on Clark
Florida one-upped us by firing Will Muschamp in his 5th season in Gainesville.
Nebraska pulled the quick trigger. OT: Bo Pellini Fired
And then, on Tuesday December 2, Athletic Director Jim Hackett addressed the media and confirmed what everyone expected: Brady Hoke Fired
So there it is. After having 3 coaches over a span of 4+ decades, we now look for our 3rd coach in 5 years. My have things changed in Ann Arbor.
At the end of the day, we're talking about a bunch of college kids playing a game. These boys put their time, effort, and well-being on the line so we can enjoy 12 Saturdays every Fall.
A poor kid with a battered brain felt the only reasonable remedy was to take his own life. His body was found near his apartment with a pistol nearby. God rest your soul, Kosta Karageorge.
To conclude, here's a picture of Devin Gardner. This photo reaches deep into my soul perhaps more than any other I've seen. Look at the face of those two young men and immerse yourself in that very moment.
It makes me feel ashamed that I've ever spoken a bad word about a college football player.
Here's to hoping for a more content future.
Eds-[As in all of us]: Bumped from boards (!) for awesome. May 2012 be even better!
Finally for all us Wolverines fans, we have a year we can look back on fondly and anticipate the future (mostly in regards to football and basketball). Here's a little picture page-ish post recollecting the past 12 months. I hope you enjoy.
After starting the year out unauspiciously, a new era of Michigan football took hold on January 11th as AD David Brandon introduced us all to....
and the now famous Hoke-point.
The Hokester brought along his buddy
which was encouraging to most, but some people were still
On the hardwood, the cagers started the season off right with a win over
only to go on a 6 game losing streak, including 2 narrow losses to the #2 and #3 teams in the country.
People were starting to question
But Ann Arbor Torch and Pitch Fork closed it's door for the year after the Wolverines marched into Breslin Arena and ended the Spartans beloved "Days since....." calendar, forcing these assclowns
to have to scrub each other's prepubescent chests.
Get the **** off my court.
After just 3 weeks on the job, Hokester salvages a top20 recruiting class, including
Brennan Beyer (SAM) | Frank Clark (WDE) | Blake Countess (CB)
Delonte Hollowell (CB) | Desmond Morgan (WLB) | Matt Wile (K/P/KO)
...who either start or make signficant contributions in just their first year on campus. We didn't know at the time, but these 6 turn out to be pretty damn good.
Meanwhile, the pipeline from Farmington Hills Harrison to Lansing is temporarily diverted west as
solidify their future by taking their talents to the good side.
decide to go all
on some poor dude in a Colorado bar then flee the scene. The po-po apprehended them and sentenced them to 1 to 3 more years in East Lansing.
went to the NCAA finals, narrowly losing 3-2 in overtime to Minnesota-Duluth.
Memorial Day Weekend. It's one of those days where you remember exactly where you were at that moment in time when
was "forced out" at Ohio State for repeatedly lying to his administration and NCAA. Turns out Cheaty knew about some shenanigans going on inside his program but didn't want to upset the winning apple cart, so he only told the owner of this car
and perhaps an FBI agent.
Ding dong, the dick is dead.
At a team meeting to tell all the Buckeyes their coach had been fired for failing to monitor his program, which included massive memorabilia sales and trades for tatoos and questionable car deals, TP decided it would be a good idea to roll up in
with temporary tags. TP would also be unceremoniously led out of Columbus.
Take that, Brutus.
In one of the saddest and most unbelievable tragedies I can remember, 16 year old basketball commit Austin Hatch survives his SECOND airplane crash. The plane went down in northern Michigan, killing Austin's father and step mother. In the first crash in 2003, Austin and his dad survived but his mother and two siblings were killed.
Thankfully, Austin's recovery has been nothing short of miraculous. He may not play basketball again, but he'll be a Wolverine for life.
As a result of the aforementioned Buckeye shenanigans,
delivers another dong punch to the evil empire by switching his commitment from OSU to Meeeeeeeechigan. Buckeyes everywhere suck it.
Finally all the speculation and predictions have come to an end and it's time to play some football.
The boys take care of Western Michigan in grand fashion before 2 lightning delays force an early end to the game.
Then the much anticipated
Trailing 24-7 at the end of 3 quarters,
leads the Wolverines to a furious 28-point 4th quarter rally. With 1:22 left in the game, Denard hits Vincent Smith on a screen pass that goes for 21 yards and the score. The crowd goes nuts. We win, we win, we.......................... fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu. Notre Dame pulls out the unthinkable and drives right down the field, and Tommy Rees hits a wide open Theo Riddick for a 29 yard touchdown.
What a f****** drag. God******. What the hell is wrong with our D? Screw you Mattison. FU Kelly. God da.......
Wait a minute. There's still 30 seconds left. Who knows, right? Anything can happen, right? RIGHT?
Suck it Irish.
October and November
We lose to Satan for the 4th time in a row during a trash tornado, and inexplicably look bad against an average Iowa team. But all is not lost. We go on to beat Illinois, run a train on Nebraska, and then, FINALLY, after a decade of OSU dominance...
Big Ten Offensive Lineman of the Year. All America.
Here's a list of other
Conference Champions from 2011...
- Field Hickey wins the regular season and conference tournament championship
- Women's Gymnastics
- Men's Swimming and Diving
- Women's Tennis
- Men's Soccer wins the tournament title.
As Coach Hoke will tell you, it wasn't a "great" season because we didn't achieve our goal, which is the Big Ten Title. But after the last 3 years, and since 2006 frankly, this year has given us reason to be very optimistic for the future. I'm proud to be a Wolverine. My wife and I (also an alum) are fortunate to have a son who was accepted into UofM last week and hope he will grow as attached to this great institution as we are.
Thanks for the memories 2011.
[Ed-M: Bumped because this is all important stuff. Photos: MGoBlue.com: all from March 30 practice. Click through to see, among other things, Urban Meyer on the sidelines.]
I want to start by wishing a Happy Birthday to Bo. Born this day in 1929.
I attended practice yesterday and here are some very random notes and observations.
I gravitate to the LBs because that's what I coach and I try to pick up new drills/techniques. Here are the 11 guys who were working with the LB corp: Cam Gordon, Brandin Hawthorne, Marell Evans, Kenny Demens, Isaiah Bell, Mike Jones, Jake Ryan, JB Fitzgerald, Paul Gyarmati, Brandon Herron, Jordan Paskorz. They were running a lot of basic drills because, quite frankly, this group has a LOT of work ahead of them.
- Cam Gordon is ALL of 6' 3". He's gotten taller since he was a senior in HS (I know because I stood next to him at a spring practice last year and I was definitely taller than him). He looks good, physically. He's added a significant amount of muscle and has real good pop. During one particular drill where the LB shuffles downhill then forms up on the "ballcarrier," Cam surprised the ballcarrier with an explosive pop. It was either Bell or Demens. Whoever it was felt it, I can promise you that.
- Josh Furman has sweet dreads. He's a good sized kid too and got a lot of reps
- Marell Evans got a lot of reps with the ones during the scrimmage. He seems very comfortable with his teammates and coaches.
- Jake Ryan's helmet is chipped all to hell, which tells me he keeps his head up at the point of contact and has a nose [Ed-M: Or more accurately forehead] for the ball. I thought Cam looked taller but they're both listed at 6'3" on the roster.
During the scrimmages, the defense moved around a lot, displaying multiple looks. Although they were running a 4-3, Mike Martin was lined up over the center (or shaded) most of the time.
Big Will and Q got a lot of reps (with the 1s and 2s). I think Will probably gets more coaching than any kid on the team. It appears to me that the coaches REALLY believe they have something special in Will if they can just coach him up and bring it out of him. He is a big kid with a lot of potential and could be scary good if he makes up his mind and puts in the work. BTW, Will talks a lot of shit. On one play, he pursued Devin to the sideline and out of bounds, gave him some lip, then smacked the ball out of Devin's hands. It was all in good fun and I think it shows that Big Will is feeling like he's an integral part of this team. BW is big but QW isn't far behind. These two have a chance to make a huge impact, if they simply learn to work hard and realize what they can achieve.
Curt Mallory is by far the most intense person on the entire field. He is working hard with the DBs.
It's obvious both sides of the ball are learning new schemes. Lots of mistakes and miscues. However, the intensity is there. Ryan Van Bergen is your vocal leader of the defense.
Here are the DBs I noticed getting lots of reps: Courtney Avery, Jordan Kovacs, Thomas Gordon, Floyd Simmons, Cullen Christian, Jared VanSlyke, Greg Brown, Marvin Robinson, Tony Anderson, and Al Backey.
- During one scrimmage, Jordan Kovacs dropped the hammer on an outstretched Je'Ron Stokes. It was a BIG lick, but Stokes held onto the ball and popped right up.
- Courtney Avery ran with the 1s all the time. He looks good although I think 5'11" is generous. I talked with his dad (Courtney Sr) for a while. Super nice family (mom and younger brother were there too). He said everything is completely different for Courtney and it's like starting over: Terminology, technique, alignment, philosophy, scheme.
- Cullen Christian has sweet tats on the back of both arms. Written in old english font with a 2 and C on the left arm and 4 and C on the right. (That's some Pulitzer Prize winning investigative reporting, isn't it?)
- Speaking of tats, it's one thing I noticed we have a LOT of. There's some sweet artwork out there.
- Woolfolk and Floyd were off in the corner with a S&C coach, working their asses off. The coach had one of those punching dummies that the two players would take turns delivering two handed shivers in rapid succession.
Here's something I'm sure you'll all be fired up about: the 1st team D owned the first team O in Red Zone scrimmage. Three times in a row the D stuffed the O, including a 1st and goal from the 2 which resulted in a fumble, recovered by Herron. The defense was noticably more vocal than the O, but I don't think that means anything other than the O is doing a lot more thinking, rather than just playing.
It was quite evident that this was the first week of practice under a new system. On the other hand, the 2nd team O scored in one play (both passes to the right side) TWICE against the 2nd team D.
Offensively, Rocko Khoury was the center during the scrimmages, but Molk participated in the conditioning. I don't recall seeing Molk out on the field, but maybe I just overlooked him (shame on me).
Your first O line was (from left to right) Huyge, Barnum, Khoury, Omameh, Schofield. Lewan wasn't in pads. Second O line was Barnum, Khoury, Burzynski, Pace, Gunderson.
Every time I looked up, it seemed Drew Dileo was retunring a punt or kick. There was a decent amount of time devoted to special teams at the begining and end of practice, which I thought was, you know....... important (lol). Both kickers were lined up on opposite hashes (Seth on the right hash, Brendan on the left), starting with 27 yard kicks then moving back to 35 yarders. I will leave you with this....... they need more practice.
I didn't watch the offense all that much as I was trying to concentrate on what the defense was doing and who was on the field. However Denard is sweet. His smile and personality resonate from across the field. I honestly feel like we have been blessed, not with just a hell of an athlete, but a hell of a kid. That is all.
Finally, I had a chance to talk with Coach Jerry Hanlon for a bit. I haven't seen him in a LONG time, but he looks and sounds great. I'm surprised he still has a voice because he did a LOT of yelling back in the day. I remember one spring practice, for some reason, Coach Hanlon decided to coach from the press box, which was really odd. Nobody ever did that.. Anyway, we were going through a scrimmage or inside skele and all of the sudden, from WAAaaaay on high, this high-pitched, angry voice bellowed down from above. It brought practice to a screeching halt as everyone stopped what they were doing so they could take in the ass chewing Coach Hanlon's dished out to some poor linemen from 100 feet in the air. I guess you had to be there, but it was memorable.
The genesis of an exasperated and exhausted fan base, as retold through the headlines found on MGoBlog. The bolded ones are front page headlines, the others are MGoBoard material.
Forcier article in the Freep............Includes the following quote: “you really have to try to flunk out here. All you have to do is go to class, it’s not that hard.” Ugh.
CC: Harbaugh to Maryland
Zettel to Penn St.
MSU: Best team ever?
OT: Harbaugh’s energy, intensity, and must win attitude
Pryor, other Bucks pledge to return next season
CC: Schefter says “buzz around the league is JH to UM”
The call on RR is so close, it all boils down to this bowl game
Mike Martin going pro
Breaking: Tate Forcier ineligible for Gator
CC: Rich Rod to Maryland
Michigan wins 14th GLI
OT: San Francisco 49ers Interested in Stanford HC Harbaugh
Dee and Haha
Tate’s future with the team undetermined
MSU (ntMSU) stomach bug
Betting line down to +3
CC: RR to Pitt Rumor
The question I may not want answered: "Can anyone win with this team?"
97.1 just dissed MGoBlog
Dee Hart still committed to Michigan?
JH: Harbaugh watch Day 1
CC: Rosenberg contradicts self, ref: "Harbaugh unlikely to bolt"
CC: Harbaugh undecided
Harbaugh Turns us down?
CC: Why not Tom Bradly if JH says no?
Fox 2 just tweets Rich Rod fired.
Hello: Brady Hoke?
RB/DB meeting nearing Hour 3
Gruden, Harbaugh favored for SF post
Is there any way Brandon hasn't screwed this up, barring getting Harbaugh?
John Harbaugh: Jim "done" with Michigan
Rodriquez: Not Dead Yet, Technically.....where Brian writes "if Brady Hoke is actually hired small children should not read the site for a week following because every other word will be swearing. This is in no way a joke."
Open Thread: Michigan Football's D-Day
Chegelis: RR Fired
Coaching Search: It has begun
Harbaugh-49ers meeting today
Nothing left to do but drink
Rodriquez: Dead, this time for certain
Non-Hoke options: Extant--- includes Peterson, Patterson, Wittingham, Strong, Mullen, Fitzgerald, and Hoke.
Rumor: Harbaugh, Dolphins reach deal in principle
Fitz staying at NU
Dolphins decide to keep Sparano
A World Held Hostage: Day 2 - - "Seriouosly people, the Jim Harbaugh boat has sailed........until it hasn't (which it probably has).
Thursday Recruiting is in the dark
Unverified Voracity Dips and Batters
A World Held Hostage: Day Thee point One
Schefter: Harbaugh to 49ers
A Brady Hoke Supporter
A couple questions about Les Miles
Bill Martin supports DBs decision
Integrity is worth more than Les Miles
Official University job posting
Rogel's M-themed jet spotted at Baton rouge airport
Bill Chill final count: 104.073 - - according to Guiness World Record.
Dungy on PTI
OT: Texas hires Boise State OC
Schad: Patterson receives new contract extension @ TCU
Les Miles Buzz: High, and conflicting.
Frost to Auburn
What about Mike Singletary?
Dan Mullen reported in Baton Rouge Friday.
Auburn doesn't have room from Frost.
Why Rich Rodriquez was fired
Les Miles hired?
CC Rumor: Gruden interviewing?
Dominoes jet to Dallas?
Schad: Miles to interview with Michigan
More dong punching: Frost to UNC?
Brandon is in Dallas interviewing Miles and someone else.....
OT: Stanford interested in Boise's Peterson
Well.. Why not consider Steve Sarkisian?
Show 'Em the Money, Dave
A World Held Hostage: Mailbag
A World Held Hostage: Miles Drumbeat Update
Hire Dan Mullen: Keep Denard
Our plane is heading to Baton Rouge
Who is our choice after Brady Hoke?
Why Les is not more.
Moral Victory for MBB
EDIT....FWIW.....IMO....Reports indicate Miles to stay at LSU
Rumeal Robinson sentenced to 6 1/2 years for financial fraud
No Interviews today
Stoops offered coaching job?
A. Chengalis: Michigan, Miles expected to meet Tuesday
Dave Brandon in Dallas
Monty Python and the Unholy Coaching Change
A World Held Hostage: Day 5
Where in the World is David Brandon
Dear Diary Re-cues the coping mechanisms
Rosie (Rosenberg) doesn't see Mile->Michigan happening
Scout: K Goudis now a soft commit
Rivals Rumor: Gut Feeling it's Hoke
Miles and Michigan will meet
Schad on Twitter: LSU willing to pay for part of Les' UM buyout
Tiger Droppings hearing Miles to Michigan
A World Held Hostage: Day 6
Miles on Michigan
The Planes: They Meet
Peterson staying at Boise St.
D-Day Morning Open Thread
D-Day Mid-Morning Open Thread
D-Day Thread 3.0
Welcome to F5 Day
F5D: Circumstantial Miles Evidence in Two Parts
Alleva: I am pleased to announce that Les Miles will remain the head coach at LSU"
Miles to Stay at LSU
San Diego Union Tribune Reports Hoke in talks for Michigan job
The Worst Part About All Of This Is Hoke Rhymes with "Joke" And "Choke," Thus Providing A Steady Stream Of Hur Hur Hur Posts From Teenage Fans of Rivals
O/U on days til MSC requests Brandon's resignation?
Official: Hoke head coach
The Official: Please Stay Denard Thread
RR Haters: RR < Hoke?
ADC: Time for a change at the top
Hoke React, No Swearing
...and there you have it. Bottoms up.
We all know recruiting is a crap shoot, generally speaking. You're taking 17 & 18year old kids away from home for the first time, putting them amongst 1000's of other students they've never met, AND asking them to kick some ass against equal or better talent on the gridiron. And, oh yeah, don't forget to study or you'll be on a bus back to ____________. It's a lot to handle. But I digress.
I did some research to see if there's a correlation between a team's rank in recruiting and their on-field success.
Here's a re-cap of the last 6 years in the Big 10 (including 2009). Each team's national recruiting rank (per Rivals.com) is noted and their rank in the Big 10 is the order in which I've listed the teams. For 2008 and prior I've also noted their finish in the big 10 and their conference record. (NOTE: the national ranking has nothing really to do with my hypothesis but I didn't realize that until I had already typed the entire list up).
Ohio state - ranked 3 nationally
Michigan - 7th nationally
MSU - 16th
Penn St - 25th
Illinois - 32nd
Minnesota - 39th
Wisconsin - 43rd
Northwestern - 58th
Indiana - 59th
Iowa - 63rd
Purdue - 74th
Ohio St - 4th nationally(T1 in conference play at 7-1)
Michigan - 10th (10th in conference at 2 - 6)
Minnesota - 17th (6th at 3 - 5)
Illinois - 23rd (8th at 3-5)
Wisconsin - 41st (7th at 3-5)
Penn St- 43rd (T1 at 7-1)
MSU - 47th (3rd at 6-2)
Iowa - 53rd (4th at 5-3)
Purdue - 63rd (9th at 2-6)
Northwestern - 73rd (5th at 5-3)
Indiana - 78th (11th at 1-7)
Michigan - 12th nationally (finished 2nd at 6-2)
Ohio State - 15th (1st at 7 -1)
Illinois - 20th (3rd at 6-2)
Penn St. - 24th (5th at 4-4)
Iowa-28th (6th at 4-4)
Wisconsin-34th (4th at 5-3)
MSU-42nd (9th at 3-5)
Northwestern-53rd (10th at 3-5)
Minnesota-57th (11th at 0-8)
Purdue-59th (7th at 3-5)
Indiana-97th (8th at 3-5)
Penn St- 6th nationally (finished 4th at 5-3)
Ohio St-12th (1st at 8-0)
Michigan-13th (3rd at 7-1)
Illinois-30th (11th at 1-7)
MSU-33rd (10th at 1-7)
Iowa-4th (8th at 2-6)
Wisconsin-42nd (2nd at 7-1)
Purdue-50th (5th at 5-3)
Minnesota-62nd (6th at 3-5)
Northwestern-81st (9th at 2-6)
Indiana-84th (7th at 3-5)
Michigan-6th nationally (5th at 5-3)
Iowa-11th (4th at 5-3)
Ohio St.-12th (2nd at 7-1)
Penn St-25th (1st at 7-1)
Purdue-29th (8th at 3-5)
Wisconsin-33rd (3rd at 5-3)
MSU-35th (9th at 2-6)
Illinois-51st (11th at 0-8)
Northwestern-52nd (6th at 5-3)
Minnesota-55th (7th at 4-4)
Indiana-72nd (10th at 1-7)
Michigan-5th nationally (1st at 7-1)
Ohio St.-9th (6th at 4-4)
Penn St-14th (9th at 2-6)
MSU-16th (7th at 4-4)
Purdue-20th (5th at 4-4)
Iowa-38th (2nd at 7-1)
Wisconsin-39th (3rd at 6-2)
Illinois-50th (10th at 1-7)
Minnesota-58th (8th at 3-5)
Indiana-59th (11th at 1-7)
Northwestern-78th (4th at 5-3)
What does all this mean (other than I just stole 2 hours of the company's time)?
Ohio State finished with the best recruiting class in the Big 10 twice (08 and 09). They also finished first in the standing twice (07, 06--NOT including ties for first).
Penn State had the top recruiting class once (in 06) and finished first in conference play twice (08 and 05).
MICHIGAN has had the top recruiting class THREE TIMES (07, 05, and 04) yet only finished first in the conference once (04).
My theory is that a higher rank in recruiting does not always equate to success on the field.
I tried to quantify a teams recruiting class rank and their standing in the conference at the end of each season (finish 1st get 1 point. 2nd = 2, and so on). It's somewhat inaccurate because I didn't account for ties. This can be looked at two ways: if a team finished the season with the same record as another team but beat the other team head to head, they were awarded a 1st place finish while the defeated team was awarded 2nd (or a 2). However, if rings are all that matters, then Ohio State is gonna jump to the head of the class since they earned 4 of them over the last 4 years. Frankly, that doesn't sit well with me, so fuck em.
Unfortunately for us, Michigan takes somewhat of a beating: they have an average finish of 1.66 in recruiting within our conference (2,2,1,3,1,1 divided by 6 = 1.66) yet an average finish of 4.2 (10th,2,3,5,1)
Here's the entire list (recruiting avg/standing avg):
Penn St 3.66/4
The best case scenario is to have a lower standings avg vs. your recruiting avg. Wisconsin faired best in this category by finishing with an avg recruiting rank of 6.3 but an average in standings of 3.8.
The worst finishers are Michigan, Illinois, and MSU. Shit!
There are a lot of factors when it comes to onfield success and converting 4 and 5 star recruits into champions. Coaching changes, injuries, early departures for the NFL. But, in my opinion, these numbers tell a story.
We have some work ahead of us, gentlemen (and ladies).