Do we really have a shot at pulling a kid who lives in Miami away from, uh, Miami? Maybe. Take this useless internet speculation for what it's worth, but some dude on the Miami board says, "Believe it or not most knowledgable sources in Florida thaink this kid is Michigan's to lose."
I think I side with "not" in this case but Baas and Hutchinson both came from Florida, along with freshman Grant DeBenidictis, so what little success we've found in Florida has been along the offensive line.
John Walters' latest Campus Blitz discusses timeouts in basketball a bit and allows me to open fire on one of my favorite sports rules to despise: the live-action timeout. No sport except basketball allows this monstrosity to occur. Quarterbacks cannot politely request a stop in play immediately after they hurl a wounded duck skyward. Defensemen cannot demand the referee put a stop to things if they are pressured by a heavy forecheck and have no place to put the puck. Baseball has no live action. Only in basketball can you get trapped in a corner by good defensive play and simply ask the referee to correct your screwup for you.
I hate all basketball timeouts, actually. And not just because of the infamous Webber Incident, though that certainly didn't help. Timeouts are one of the reasons I can't get as into basketball as, say, hockey or football (primary reason: watching my team lose a basketball game almost always makes me seriously consider buying a shotgun and a permit for Ref season). The end of a tight basketball game is almost always frantic action alternating with boring trips to the free-throw line and commercials for OxyClean. Frantic action, yes. Free-throws and STAIN FIGHTING POWER, no. Coaches use timeouts as a crutch for players who can't think. We're down three with 40 seconds to go. What do you do? Call timeout, ask coach.
Wouldn't basketball be better if teams had a single timeout? Coaches would have to wonder whether they should halt their opponent's run or save the Precious for a critical late-game situation. The decision would be akin to the decision to take a timeout in hockey... it happens every once in a while early in a game, it's infrequent and not terribly important, and no one minds. Occasionally the mid-game timeout dramatically tilts the ice in favor of one team or another. Michigan trailed DU 3-0 in an NCAA tournament game five or so years back when Berenson called his timeout. Michigan scored 5 straight goals in a game that burned itself into my head. Drama!
There's no drama when timeouts are as disposable as Indonesian Nike employees or top-100 defensive ends at USC, so the answer to that question is "I'll take a timeout BOTH times!" That's great if you're a control freak of a coach, but bad if you're anyone else. Timeouts should disappear from basketball.
If you're really patient with maniacs, I can also describe to you why I think hockey should get rid of offsides. Entirely. But maybe another time.
From a Kentucky coach on Rivals. Hopefully UM can raid KY again this year. There are some high profile guys there again.
Update: No kidding, dude. Perusing the UK board reveals downright panic about UM returning to loot and plunder the rolling hills of Kentucky, pursuing four of the top five prospects in the state: Johnson, Corey Peters (who played right next to McKinney on the DL of Louisville Central), Justin Burke (The QB of Brandon Logan's LexCath team), and scatback/DB Javeare Turner.
Michigan is co-leader with UL for Peters, apparently. A UK poster had a conversation with Crabtree and gave an early line for the stars on these guys: probably 5 for Johnson, 4 for Peters and Burke, and 3 for Turner.
Says the Free Press. BE's discussing his prospects for the upcoming draft and saying Miami seems to be a good fit, which I have to strongly disagree with. Who will throw you the ball, Braylon?
Update: Typo fix. Also I said "News" instead of "Free Press." It's a blog, it's supposed to be shoddy. That's its charm.
That's "more of the same" for the acronymally challenged.
I could rehash my stance (Amaker obviously can't be judged on this year but things I see disturb me greatly) but you've heard that before, too. One new thing I can add is that I had my concerns nicely summarized by a single sequence against MSU: Michigan's gone on a nice little run to get it down to ten with a few minutes left in the game and plays an excellent defensive sequence that results in Neitzel jacking up an off-balance prayer of a three with time expiring on the shot clock. He bricks it, but no one boxes out Alan Anderson, he gets the offensive rebound, and MSU runs another 30 seconds off the clock before AA cans a short jumper.
What is Amaker doing during practice? I hope it's more than "let's play really good this weekend, guys!" followed by Abram raising his hand and saying "let's play well, Coach," followed by Amaker saying "Yeah! That's the ticket!"
I dunno, I like my student-athletes to be scared #$%*less by their coach. I mean, not Bobby Knight scared, but Red Berenson scared. I could see Amaker in a Care Bears episode as Friendly Mr. Coachy.
"Fundamentals make my tummy ouch."
Johnson steady at #2. Cogliano at #22. Not sure on the other UM players, as I am not a subscriber.
I'll bet the CSB a dollar that Cogs goes a lot closer to #22 than whatever ridiculous 6th round prediction they put up in their midterm rankings.
Update: Hensick checks in at #45, again a much, much more realistic projection than the CSB's ridiculousness.