Seems to be some varying stories on whether the "Go Blue" over East Lansing was supposed to be a target or not.
UM Ath. Dept Paid for Skywriting on Saturday
I like to think that the pilot was just a bit bored and decided to do some impromptu trolling.
That is what I was hoping for, too, but these days, almost nothing is free.
Frankly I could care less where they did it.
What I'd like to know is why the hell is the Athletic Department jacking up our ticket prices and going on a massive fundraising campaign and sending out donation requests left and right if THIS IS WHAT THEY'RE SPENDING IT ON!!!!!!
Seriously! I have no beef with building new facilities, paying coaches and assistants ridiculous salaries, endowing all the athletes scholarships but pissing away money on SKYWRITING!!! I somehow believe this money could be spent better. Think there are a few deserving students who could use that money to defray their ever increasing tuition over a dumbass expenditure like skywriting.
I'd hope Brandon would've out sourced this to a donor like he did with the band vs. Alabama.
This stuff is cute and all but when we go out and do this kind of stuff to our rivals, we sure as hell better back it up on the field and win or else we'll just look like jackasses. Thinking about the Go Blue banner at Ohio Stadium (or was it Irish Stadium) too.
sack up because I want to win our rivalry games?
Sack up because u want to win your rivalries and because writing go blue above Spartan stadium is awesome. The game will be settled on the field...not in the clouds.
The skywriting is not awesome. Its f-cking stupid and bush league. Its a waste of money and has resulted in terrible press that MSU has now compounded by using the opportunity to raise money for cancer, which is totally awesome and makes the AD look even dumber. So, talk about your all-time backfires.
Yet another stupid Dave Brandon PR stunt gone bad. Unprofessionalism is unprofessional.
So you are against all things Dave Brandon.
No, just most all of his extracurricular efforts that do not directly involve balancing the budget. IMO, an AD is someone who should be present but never seen. Or at least not seen because they are working at drawing attention to themselves like I believe Brandon does. He's got a big "me" complex, IMO.
Agreed... How many times have we seen him on the field post game hugging Hoke in front of all of the cameras?
feelings on Brandon but agree that this was stupid. It makes Michigan look as though they have a Michigan State complex, which is weird and off-putting.
...a very tacky move by Brandon. What the hell was he thinking? Idiotic decision taken to do this.
...stop over thinking things.
agree. What is up with these friggin people?
pull the sticks out of your arses. If you thought it was dumb, no need to lose your mind.
I probably wouldn't be that upset about it either if I lived 1,000 miles from any Spartan fan. It's an entirely different scenario when you have to deal with Sparties on a daily basis.
So people around M are pissed. Whatever. If a plane writes something in the sky and it is no longer there, did it really happen? Does it really matter? Its all quite silly.
You're not the boss of him. He's entitled to his own opinion. No need to try to mastermind how everyone else feels about things like this.
No...he is his boss.
Whatever man. Be pissed. Its a verrrrry serious subject. My bad.
My comment to the OP was that the sky writing is bush league but not the end of the world. So I'm not actually pissed, but thanks for the permission anyway.
You, on the other hand, appear to be freaking out over other people's reactions, even while commanding other people not to freak out. Luckily it is Friday, so hopefully you will have a chance to decompress over the weekend and stop worrying so much if other people see something differently than you do. Good luck!
What I meant was you sound scared, like if we lose to MSU (which we won't), we're going to look soooooooo silly. Well, the "GO BLUE" thing occurred before the game this year and after a win against them last year, so it's justified.
of being logical. Because. . . these two obscure-ass things. . . this other lame thing. Carl Cohen is rolling in his grave.
You must be confused. The people who play on the field aren't the same people who do these stunts.
Tending to agree with you. Pretty surprised to hear the athletic department did this - would seem different coming from some anonymous fans.
We look like jackasses anyway.
Those 1,500 extra student basketball season tickets have to pay for something.
Well, I'm glad the University of Michigan Athletic Department is taking the profits from my ticket payments and putting them to productive use.
We're better than this.
Because finances are always this simple.
Good thing you're not in charge of the AD funds . . .
Where they have too much money and need to lower prices if they can afford to do stupid shit like this.
Of all the Brandon/marketing/money bashing, but this is just solid ammo for that crowd. I emailed Ablauf, Lochmann and Brandon, FWIW.
shake your head. AD does it? We're all twelve years old? Money. . . literally. . . up in smoke.
Yes! Exactly. We have no say or right to say what individuals do with their dough. If some rich alum or fan wants to pay for that, so be it. I'd freely criticize as there are better things to do with it but totally his right.
NOW...that changes dramatically when you talk about an athletic department that jacks up prices and goes on fundraising campaigns talking about their desire to keep up with the joneses on facilities and salaries and then you see them piss the money away on skywriting. They are absolutely open to criticism.
....if Brandon responds. I sent him an email after he stuck my endzone seats with the PSD when I had thought that people who were season ticket holders prior to the initial PSD and who chose to stay in the endzone would be exempt. He responded, to my surprise. We went back and forth a few times and he basically called me a bad fan because I didn't want to "keep up with OSU" and that I had the choice to "forfeit my season tickets."
He is an egotistical asshole. It doesn't surprise me one bit that he used AD funds for this prank.
Doesn't DB have better things to do than to pick fights with alumni and fans?
I honestly didn't expect him to respond to me (see below), or if he did, to be fake nice. Instead he talked down to an alumnus. Stupid.
But the response I got from Ablauf was so obviously a prepared form letter for the shitstorm I don't really mind:
Thanks for the email. We hired a skywriter to display multiple slogans around southeast Michigan prior to our game on Saturday. They canvassed major areas coming into Ann Arbor and surrounding counties.
Here are some of the slogans and numbers that they wrote:
M Go Blue
804 (# of wins)
134 (for Team 134)
76 (for Steve Hutchinson)
79 (for Jeff Backus)
For your information, skywriters work more than 10,000 feet in the air. The words “Go Blue” in the sky are over 5 miles wide by 1 mile in height and it can be seen for over 20 miles. The same goes for an “M” which is 2+ miles by 3+ miles and can be seen from the same distance. According to the skywriting company, you would think that it would be directly over your house and really it could be many miles away. The other factor that needs to be considered is the wind direction … and that is something that can’t be controlled when writing text or numbers in the sky.
This is one of the best marketing vehicles that we do all year in terms of impressions. The cost per written piece is estimated at $100.
We are glad this has turned into a positive story for a noble cause.
Hope this answers your question.
I know it was a form message, because I didn't actually ask any questions in the email. Just a couple of statements on how it is an embarrassing misuse of funds and how it made MSU look better than us. And I got the Wiki history on skywriting it seems. Sent it to him and Lochmann; only Cc'd Brandon. I figured he's not sitting there making decisions on hiring skywriters, but he should know how people feel about what his marketing people are doing.
"804 (# of wins)"
I really hope the AD actually got the win number wrong, because that would be priceless.
And I figured pointing it out to him would just sound like douchey snark rather than making a serious point. But yeah, I noticed.
I hadn't considered the possibility that he might have cut and pasted it from the instructions given to the skywriting company. That would have been...unfortunate.
They got it right at the game, but they sent the email that you got to the Detroit News as a statement and got the number wrong there as well. Link
I got a press release.
So no problem printing it, I guess. That's the point of a press release, no?
Did he REALLY say that skywriting is one of the best marketing vehicles in terms of impressions???? WTF is going on there??? That's one of the most ridiculous things I've ever heard.
Even if that's true, I don't think he should be accepting congratulations for this year's effort. It made them and U-M look stupid.
I fired off an email and Brandon responded (twice). It was not a form response, because he quoted back to me some of the language I used in my email. (/Tin foil hat medals: Maybe we have some really smart email bots at Michigan. Hmmmm.)
Anyhow, allegedly less than $5K spent on 50 sky messages to be spread across the state of Michigan. E.L. was allegedly not directed to be a target. I'm personally no longer bothered about the amount spent (i.e., $100 on the E.L. "GO BLUE"), but remain a bit bothered about the class aspect. Assuming that they were spread across Michigan, I'll bet that it was cool to see something like this in Muskegon, Jasckson, Flint, Battle Creek, etc. Would have been much cooler to see this in NYC/CT this weekend.
I e-mailed Brandon about advertising in Michigan stadium (post "noodle") and got a very hostile, condescending response from DB.
I sent the same e-mail to Brian Townsend and got a really nice response.