no wonder we hired Hunter Lochmann
I was watching pre-game coverage when a bout of inspiration hit me. I ignored all else so I could get this down before I forgot it. I hope you enjoy this. Now if you’ll excuse me, I hear there’s a pretty big game on right now.
The devil Pitino went down to Georgia, he was looking for a title to steal.
He was in a bind, his team was way behind because Burke was making steals.
He had run into some young men raining down threes and making some blocks.
the devil Pitino jumped up onto the hardcourt and said “Boys, let me tell you what:
“I bet you didn’t know it, but my team’s pretty damn good too
“And if you care to take a dare I’ll make a bet with you.
“Now you’ve playing good basketball, but give my Cardinals their due:
“I bet the national title against your game ‘cause I think we’re better than you.”
The boys said: “Well we’re the Fresh Five and this may not be wise,
“But we’ll take your bet, you’re gonna regret, cause we’re the best since the Fab Five.”
Wolverines take your practice shots and get ready to play hard.
‘Cause Louisville’s in Georgia and
the devil Pitino deals the cards.
And if you win you gain respect from M fans young and old.
But if you lose, it just might crush my soul.
The devil Pitino chalked up many plays and said: “We’ll start this show.”
And threes rained from beyond the arc and put backs went down low.
And the Cardinals were the darlings, making Wolverine fans hiss.
Then the Cardinal sang a song to their glory and it sounded something like this:
When the Cardinals finished, the Fresh Five said: “Well you’re pretty good ‘ol chaps.
“But sit down on that bench, right there.” And Burke gave the court a slap.
Stauskas nailing three balls, one by one.
Burke showing all why we’re number one.
Robinson and Hardaway alley-oops, WHOA!
“Beilein does Big Puppy bite?”
Go, Mitch, go.”
The devil Pitino and the Cardinals sank low once they were beat.
And they laid the national title on the court at the Fresh Five’s feet.
Burke said: “
Devil Pitino just come on back but I warn you that’s not wise.
“’Cause we told you once, you sorry old man, we’re the best since the Fab Five.”
And they sang “Stauskas nailed three balls, one by one.
“Burke showed all why we’re number one.
“Robinson and Hardaway alley-ooped, WHOA!
“And Mitch got a double-double.
“Go, Blue, Go!”
As you all probably know by now, SDSU utilized an interesting way of playcalling this past Saturday where, instead of using odd hand gestures and yelling a lot, they held up large cards with pictures of those who had left the program for greener pastures (read: Michigan...duh). Now it appears that fans and mgobloggers weren't the only ones to notice this innovative method. In a stunning move, Dave Brandon has announced today (in a secret press conference that I was lucky enough to have been invited to) that Michigan will begin using the same tactic beginning immediately.
Okay, now before everyone gets all ANGAR and DAVEBRANDONRABBLEPIZZARABBLE, allow me to asplode your heads, for I am privvy to not only the people whose faces will be used on these cards, but also the strategies that will be implemented with each card! You can all thank me later but before that, I'm pleased to announce:
Michigan's Face Card Strategies Idea That They Borrowed from SDSUTM
As you all remember, Tony Gibson was Michigan's Defensive Backs/Special Teams Coach for 3 seasons under Rich Rodriguez. His departure has thus made him eligible for the Michigan Face Cards. When Michigan's defense sees this card, they are to immediately give any and all possible receivers at least a 10 yard cushion off the line of scrimmage (this may also apply to defensive line players since you never know when one of those scrappy tackles will break off for a quick slant).
Cornerbacks are also encouraged to completely ignore the receiver they're covering after about 2 yards and just turn and run downfield like hell is chasing them (for reference on how this technique looks when done properly, see footage from the 2010 PSU game).
[NOTE: If this Face Card is shown on a kick or punt return, the returner is expected to muff the ball, or otherwise fumble it on the run if he accidentally caught it the first time.]
When Michigan's defense sees this Face Card, they are encouraged to "Embrace the Change", and ponder this deeply. However once the ball is snapped, cornerbacks should work on providing enough coverage to make the opposing QB think long enough in the hopes that he'll be sacked, which is pretty likely to happen...if you have players named Woodley, Branch, Jamison and/or Burgess. If not, then just try really, really hard.
However, if this Face Card is shown against a spread team with a mobile quarterback, then just lay down to die, and pray that it's over soon.
Greg "GERG" Robinson
When the defense sees Greg Robinson's beautiful flowing locks with his face underneath staring back at them, they must immediately switch into a 3-3-5 (hell, so does the offense because, I mean, this 3-3-5 thing must work somewhere, right?). Players are also expected to play well out of position and look extremely confused, and if they do so, they'll likely be rewarded by a sideline hug from Mr. Snuggles the Fun-Time Football Beaver.
Also, if you bring this Face Card into your local participating hair salon, you'll receive 20% off your next haircut or perm (new customers only, subject to change, void where prohibited, not valid on dreadlocks).
When the RR Face Card is shown on offense, expect a zone-read, and also expect Denard to run the ball regardless of anything else (this includes wide open receivers, multiple LB spies, and 5 foot brick walls across the width of the field Wile E. Coyote-style). It is also recommended to have a new RB in the backfield every new time this is shown.
This Face Card also holds other possibilities. If a position is in dire need (aka - has little to no depth), a player from that position is required to do one of the following wen seeing the RR Face Card: 1) become severely injured for the rest of the season, 2) leave the program, or 3) become ineligible to play for any other other reason (academics is a good one). This Face Card will also signify to the MMB that it is time to play a Josh Groben song.
BONUS: When a new drive begins, flip a coin. If the coin is heads, go three-and-out. If tails, bust off a huge 80+ yard run by Denard in an insane comeback against ND.
Lloyd Carr's Face Card is actually quite specific yet simple. Here's the breakdown:
1st Down: I-Formation, Zone-Left Run
2nd Down: I-Formation, Zone-Left Run
3rd Down: I-Formation, Zone-Left Run
4th Down: Punt (but only if it's ≥ 4th and inches AND you're not within the opponents 20 yd. line, in which case, kick a field goal)
Well, there you have it folks! Michigan's Face Card Strategies Idea That They Borrowed From SDSUTM. I don't know about you, but I can't WAIT to see these bad boys in action. I'm sure Minnesota won't know what hit them this Saturday. Go Blue!
Well, here we are: Day 5 of the national Coaching Search and nary a coach in site. Emotions have run high, beer and liquor supplies have run low, and livers have become cirrhosised (no, that’s not a real word, but whatever). However, I feel that as a fanbase we have been fairly cool, calm, and collect…okay, I’m just kidding. We’ve been acting like starving hyenas snapping at any and every scrap of information that comes our way like it’s a piece of meat.
Regardless, we all have opinions and we need to respect those opinions, even if we don’t necessarily support or agree with them. We are all in this tight spot together as fans, and while we’re all hoping that our own “Coach X” gets hired, we all need to understand something: we are all Michigan fans, and we NEED to support this team, this program, especially whomever the new coach happens to be [yes, even if it’s Brady Hoke].
Now, since everyone and their grandma’s gardener has an opinion about how Brandon is doing with this Coach Search or whatever (and it was requested by bklein09), I conducted a quick survey to gauge the feelings and opinions of the average MGoBlogger (which, I’m sure we’ll all agree, is FAR from average). Please to be enjoying the results!
[NOTE: There were a total of 263 responses for this survey, and no demographics were taken. Also, the chance that this survey is accurately representative of…ANYHTING are slimmer than our chances of getting Jim Harbaugh. Too soon?]
Question 1: Who is your current top coaching candidate for the University of Michigan?
Now it appears that the majority of the board wants Chuckie to be our coach, but everybody’s favorite Horned Frog, Gary Patterson is a not-too-distant second place. Les Miles’ sleaziness and potential propensity for rapin’ e’erbody out here may have held him back to a respectable (?) third. I will admit that I regret not being able to represent more potential coordinator candidates, but I didn’t want this pie to look like it was being shared at the Duggar’s house…
Anyway, there was an "Other" category and write-ins were welcome. A few weren't very realistic (Jim Harbaugh, Lloyd Carr), and a few were some guy named Rich Rodrigues. Others included Bo Pelini, Bo Schembechler (frowny face) and Mayor McCheese (that was me). That's about it. Take it FWIW.
Question 2: With Harbaugh off the board, should DB have fired RR?
Okay, I’m not gonna lie: I was shocked to see that 50% of MGoBloggers were opposed to firing RR with Harbaugh off the board, especially given the possibilities we may or may not probably have (or don’t) with LesGrudenHoke. However, it seems that the vast majority of people will be extremely pissed about the RR firing should we fail to land a “Big Name” coach, and since the definition of “Big Name” differs from person to person, this means jack-squat. Regardless, it appears that the majority of folks had this as their short list before the firing [in no particular order]:
1) Jim Harbaugh
2) RichRod with a new DC
Ladies and gentlemen, this is just another confirmation that life isn’t fair. Still, a quarter of you were not pleased at all with RR and wanted him gone no matter what, and if I’m correct in remembering, that number decreased from the December survey posted in December (redundant). However, that could be due to the meteoric crater known as the Coach Search. #takeitwithagrainofsalt
Question 3: Before the Coach Search, were you in favor of a RR firing?
Well, after seeing Q2, these results shouldn’t be too shocking. They’re pretty self-explanatory, and it’s interesting to note the changes from the almost 33/33/33 split seen in the December survey. It looks like those “Undecided” folks shifted camps, mostly to the “No” side of the fence. Again, Coach Search is a powerful force. Moving on!
Question 4: When should RR have been fired?
I’ll just state the obvious: NOBODY thought that RR should have been fired later than it was done by Brandon. Also, it should be noted that about 83% of bloggers feel that they would have chosen a different time to fire RR than Brandon. Maybe we should all band together and fill out a collective application when the next AD is being hired. As seen in the last 2 questions, people were not ready to let RR go (either at all or only if we couldn’t get JH), so the fact that 46% of respondents thought that RR shouldn’t have been fired this year is no shocker.
There is also a strong contingency that thought RR should have been fired after the regular season, which is understandable given the current Coach Search, if not wholly influenced by hindsight. Still, it would be interesting to see how things would be now had we fired RR after the OSU game and hired a new guy in December. Where’s that damn crystal ball?
Question 5: Should DB have fired RR without a replacement lined up?
Obvious results are obvious. Staring at them longer won’t make them change, just like how dwelling on the “what-if’s” and the “what-could-have-been’s” won’t change the spot we’re in (sorry, not trying to be preachy; I also have to tell myself this from time to time just to keep sane). Let's just agree to disagree with DB and keep chugging along.
Question 6: If you had known about the current Coach Search beforehand, would your opinion about firing RR have changed?
Okay, so the questions have gotten longer and the results have gotten..well, predictable. Still a third of the people would have preferred RR being fired despite the Coach Search, and about 44% of people would have still preferred to keep RR as the coach despite the Coach Search (very similar to 46% of people who weren’t in favor of a RR firing).
The interesting part is that the Coach Search seems to have swayed people more into the “Don’t Fire RR” camp from the “Fire” camp. Those that were Undecided before the DOOM-Kitty-Coaching-Apocalypse seem to have been pissed off so much (or saddened beyond belief) by recent events that they would have preferred to have avoided the whole thing altogether. Oh, and there was actually ONE person who changed their opinion from “Don’t Fire” to “Fire”, so if you see that person, kindly ask them “What’s your DEAL?!”
[NOTE: 8% of you need to get an opinion, seriously. These are scary times in which to be complacent.]
Question 7: How do you feel about DB's handling of the current Coach Search?
Being a GSI, I get this kind of question answered about me all the times, so I figured it was Dave Brandon’s turn. You’re all smart and I don’t need to spell it out for you, but then again, that would make for a boring diary. Sadly[?], only 20% of MGoFans approve of DB’s handling of the Coaching Circus, whereas more than double of you feel that DB is not handling this whole situation in a favorable manner. Seeing that, I wish I would have asked a short answer question as to what you would have done to improve the situation (I keed, I keed!). Oh, and we have more than a third of you who are spineless and have no opinion (I’m taking “Neutral” to mean “No Opinion”, “Not Sure” and/or “Undecided”). Seriously, these are the times where it’s okay to have an opinion.
[Okay, maybe I’m being too harsh on our Swiss fans here. I guess I could see how “Neutral” could also mean “Wait and See” or “I Couldn’t Have Done A Better Job So I’ll STFU”. My apologies to our Neutral friends. If I’ve offended you, there will be an application you can fill out for reparations in the form of one of my MGoPoints.]
Question 8: Assuming we return all the players we would have had RR not been fired (not counting recruits), what do you anticipate our win total being in 2011?
And now we come to the longest and obligatory question based solely on gut feelings, maize-and-blue tinted glasses and the reading of entrails: projected win totals for next year. I tried my best to break the wins into fair categories. I personally feel that this team has a 100% chance of being .500 at least, so I decided to give a wider range to the lower half of possible win totals. After we got past the “bowl-eligible” threshold, I decided to go by two wins, just to give a little wiggle room. I also felt that we should consider a bowl game since, given all too real and recent events, those count…BIG! I personally don’t like to guess an actual number until AT LEAST 6 months before kickoff (or we have a coach…whichever comes first, I guess), so I also included the “Won’t Guess” option for those like me.
A significant amount of you (14%) prefer not to guess just yet, making you the most rational people in the Michigan fanbase (which is like being the least insane person in a mental ward, so…yea). The majority of you (54%) said that you expect 8-9 wins next year, which to me says that we’re expecting improvement but we aren’t ready to make that leap into OMGBIGTENCHAMPIONS win totals just yet (either that, or we’re assuming that a coachless team run by a junior Denard can get ‘er done, which would be interesting to see). Interestingly, 24% of you felt that the team would either not improve, or worsen in wins next year. I would be willing to bet money that the majority of that faction says 7 wins, but pessimism can be contagious.
Just to clarify on this question, people were obviously/hopefully assuming that everyone who was expected to return actually does return (Martin, Roundtree, Smith, Denard, Roh, Koger, GERG…wait, scratch that!), and there were no assumptions on recruits, so this data is about as useful as a screen door on a submarine (which, ironically, we all probably feel like we’re riding right about now). Still, it was fun to guess, and we need to show our Magic 8 Ball some love from time to time.
Well, there you have it folks. I hope you enjoyed taking the survey and viewing these results as much as I had making it and writing this Diary (it was awesome to have a weekend without homework, but that won't last long). Please don't take these results seriously because: a) it was made by me, b) it was made on the interwebz, and c) Michigan football fans took it, and we're more unstable than Sybil.
Enjoy the rest of your weekend, try not to break your F5 button, and here's to a potential coach being announced in the coming week [PLEASE GOD!]. Go Blue!
There was a post earlier about a "curious M-Den item" in which many people speculated about whether this Michigan Robot could actually play football. Well, after some research, I found out more about our mechanized friend, and it appears that in all the buzz about Blake Countess(WOOOO!), people failed to realize that Michigan Robot also committed to play football for the University of Michigan. Therefore, to make up for this slight, I've compiled everything you need to know about this darkhorse athlete. Enjoy!
|5*, #1 CB, #5 Overall||6.0, #1 CB, #4 Overall||5*, 95, #2 CB|
Michigan Robot is a solid player who could contribute immediately in this defense. His size shouldn't be an issue, as Scout and Rivals have him listed at 11' 1" (ESPN, oddly, has him listed at just 10' 10"). He will also be playing in this year's U.S. Army All-Robotics Bowl. Here's is a breakdown of his game:
Michigan Robot is made of metal, he's indestructible, and he weighs the same as a truck. He literally destroys everything in his path. His speed could also be helpful in returns. He cannot kick, because he just obliterates the ball when he tries, which is a 5 yard penalty.
ESPN was the only site not to give Michigan Robot the nod as the #1 CB. Here's their reasoning:
Michigan Robot has great speed, size, and just about everything you'd want in a football player. He's a tremendous athlete, but there's a problem: he's not human. Thus, his talents are artificial and not natural. Seeing as how DeAnthony Thomas is a naturally-gifted athlete, he is our #1 rated CB.
Nevermind the fact that Michigan Robot has lasers for eyes, but moving on. Michigan Robot's tackling also seems to be superb, as to be expected when you were built for destruction. Scout breaks down his tackling:
His hips are always on a swivel: no seriously, his hips are welded to a swivel. As a result, Michigan Robot can allow his body to follow a tackle through to completion even if he doesn't get the initial stop on first contact, which never happens, so disregard that. How is this guy even legally eligible to play against humans?
Scout loves this kid, and made no attempt to hide it. Instead of quoting them, I'm simply provided the Scout page for you to observe yourself:
Michigan Robot is obviously a great athlete who loves to compete, and his performances at combines and scout camps have shown that time and time again. MI Robot's ability to cover receivers won't ever be questioned, because he's about the same height as a single-story ranch home.
Who didn't offer this kid? I mean, come on, he's a giant robot! Among the schools that Michigan beat out to land MI Robot were Florida, Alabama, Auburn, OSU, and MIT (YTMIT). The MIT offer seems odd since they haven't had a football team since...ever, but when you look at their offer, it becomes clear that they merely wanted to research how MI Robot functioned as a mechanized automaton.
MI Robot's final three came down to Michigan, Florida, and OSU, but ultimately picked Michigan because, as he put it:
During manufacturing my cranial shell was affixed with maize and blue wings, thus it seemed logical that I was meant to play for Michigan.
Scout's profile on Michigan Robot gave the following numbers:
Michigan robot didn't play football his senior year due to concern over "bodily harm to other, more human, players." However his junior year he recorded 35 interceptions, 235 tackles, 17 returns for touchdowns, and he successfully tied the goal posts into origami cranes after winning the state championship.
So, yea, he's pretty good. The only slight was in a game against Cass Tech when he got burned by a receiver for a touchdown because opposing fans yelled out a paradox in unison, thus confusing MI Robot (paradoxical statements have since been banned from all games in which MI Robot is playing in order to avoid self-destruction).
FAKE 40 TIME
ESPN and Rivals have MI Robot's speed at 4.43 even, but Scout tends to give his speed a little more credit, citing a 4.37 40 time. Since these times were timed by MI Robot's inner computer and then verified using statistical probability analysis on 1,000 hypothetical attempts, I'd say these times are pretty accurate.
Still, there's always error involved in statistical analysis, so I'll give these times a one-half FAKE out of five.
This is just a short clip, but it should tell you everything you need to know:
PREDICTION BASED ON FLIMSY EVIDENCE
When the only negative that scouts seem to give this kid is his "lack of humanity," you know you've got a good thing (as long as he's, well, not actually human). Still, it will be interesting to see if the coaching staff at Michigan will keep this kid at CB or use him, well, everywhere [Ed-M: My votes for hybrid FS/Terminator]. He's got the gifts to play nearly any position except QB (he tends to put too much mustard behind his throws, and he isn't made of Dilithium) and we could easily see him playing both ways a la Charles Woodson.
Don't look for MI Robot to redshirt since he is an obvious lock to start at an abhorrently depleted position (e.g. - the entire defense). There doesn't seem to be much Barwisizing to do because MI Robot isn't made from flesh and muscle, but never underestimate the power of milk.
Even as an underclassman, MI Robot has the potential to do special things, and I look forward to him being on All-American lists by season's end. Also, he could give Denard a run for the Heisman next year (but not really).
UPSHOT FOR THE REST OF THE CLASS
He's a freaking 11-foot robot who plays football, and he can play every position! Who cares? (Although it would still be nice to land a stud like
Walls Jernigan.) This could do wonders for our recruiting because, well, who the hell wouldn't want to play football with a football robot?
There are times in every person's life that are special: getting your driver's license, graduation, your wedding day, the birth of a child. However, for many of us who are too young to experience many of the aforementioned events, one of those times is being on the field of the Big House during a game. Well, this past Saturday, I had the privilege, nay, the HONOR to be on the field for pre-game warm-ups. Some of you may recall me posting about this earlier before the game against BGSU, and some of you wished me to tell you how it went...so here we go.
We arrived near the Eastern Gate entrance around 11 AM. At first we didn't see who we were supposed to meet, but eventually they found us in order to give us our field passes. I was initially anticipating awesome laminated passes that hung around my neck, but I soon realized that I would be getting a Willy Wonka style "golden ticket" stuck on the back of my ticket. Regardless of the "disappointment," I will cherish this ticket forever.
We made our way to the gate to the tunnel, and at this point, my heart is pounding, my palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy, there's vomit...wait, sorry got off track there. I was excited as hell to walk through the tunnel for the first time EVER! We stopped just shy of the gate to wait for the team. After taking way too many pictures of nothing, the team finally emerged from the locker room:
Then, finally, it was our turn. Never before have I experienced such pride. Here I was, walking in the hallowed steps of such athletes as Charles Woodson and Desmond Howard, and of course, coaches like Lloyd Carr, Bo Schembechler and now Rich Rodriguez. Needless to say, I got goosebumps (goosepimples maybe?). Enjoy the vicarious experience:
We slowly (on purpose) made our way to the north endzone, where I was given the treat of watching the DL do warm-ups. As per blogger suggestions. I said NOTHING (although very hard) and instead took many pictures and a couple of vids of the players and drills. I don't know how many of you have stood less than 10 feet away from Big Will and Mike Martin, but they are HUGE!
After the joy of watching the DL do their thing, it got a bit hectic. We were being told to "move along" towards our seats by the event staff, while the offense was getting their reps in. I was trying my best to get a shot of Denard in action, but my crappy digital camera has the worst zoom quality ever. Sorry I have no evidence, but it was COOL!
Afterwards, the players all gathered in a circle (you know what's coming!), and I was literally within arm's length of such players as: Roy Roundtree, Mike Shaw, Vincent Smith, Taylor Lewan, Devin Gardner, and Denard "Dilithium" Robinson. Oh, and before I show you the vid, yes, Lewan did the "Flying Denard" routine, but sadly I missed the chance to get it on film.
If you can see from the video, Barwis was in the middle of this Circle of Awesomeness, and he's freaking intense, so if you haven't already, sell your dog, buy a wolf, and name it Barwis (BE A MAN!). Shortly after that, things got uneventful. We were told to "move along" once again, and I ran into the refs. [Side Note: I told the referee to have a "good game" and he acknowledged me. Sorry to say, but seeing as how the refereeing in that game was shit, I may be partially to blame for jinxing the man. Just sayin'....]
Now comes the summit of the experience. As we're making our way to our seats, we are literally right behind the Michigan bench area. Obviously we aren't going to be here forever, but we lingered for as long as we could until someone found us out. Not only did I get to watch the team run onto the field, but afterwards I was less than 10 feet away from the likes of John U. Bacon, GERG, and GERG's hair.
Sadly, we were found out, and we were forced to exit the field. But before I ended this personal mecca of mine, I lingered near the top of the steps to the field for one last time, in order to see the march of the "M" to the north endzone:
It was a glorious time I spent on the field, and one I will never forget. It is my wish that one day you will all be able to share in the experience I had, to stand amongst the players you root for every Saturday, and to walk in the shoes of giants through the tunnel. Watching Michigan devour a weakling MAC school like BGSU was a joy in and of itself, but that, and no other game to precede it, will ever replace the memories of the time I spent in the presence of the Leaders and the Best. Go Blue!
For more vids: http://www.youtube.com/user/UMAmaizinBlue?feature=mhum
For more pics: http://img715.imageshack.us/g/img5810g.jpg/