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|1 day 23 hours ago||I can't say enough about how||
I can't say enough about how highly this speaks of Heiko, for earning Borges' trust, and Borges for actually doing this. How many blogs could land an in-depth interview with a coordinator? (A: one that I know of.) And how many coordinators would do it? (A: same.) Some still may disagree with the playcalling at times. But regardless, you really get the feeling this program is in the hands of very high-quality people, from Hoke on down.
I understand the differing philosophies about tempo. Both can work. But what I'd like to see is something like a play Tressel ran against Michigan in 2006. On a third and short (I think it was), the offense rushed to line up in a formation that looked like a QB sneak. Instead Troy Smith threw it over the top to a wide open Ted Ginn for the TD. The defense was completely fooled. That's the sort of situational changeup that seems a waste not to take advantage of.
|6 weeks 23 hours ago||Doesn't matter who leaves as||
Doesn't matter who leaves as long as Spike stays. I have a fourth cousin thrice removed who's a locker room attendant for the Laker Girls. He has it on reliable authority that the Lakers are interested in Spike as a replacement for Steve Nash.
If Spike leaves, Michigan loses every game on the schedule except for two blowouts of State. If Spike stays, they'll be the first team to go undefeated and win the NCAA since Indiana in 76.
In Spike We Trust!
|6 weeks 1 day ago||A State fan I know very||
A State fan I know very slightly was posting on Facebook after the Florida game at how bummed he was, and a couple of his buddies chimed in. I was tempted to post something like "From a lifelong Michigan fan, truly sorry your guys lost so we can't play again in the Final Four – Big Ten rules!"
I didn't do it but I wish I had. I can't imagine anyone from Spartyland doing that if the roles were reversed. I would've felt like the classy Michigan fan most of us are. Moral superiority feels better than trashing the trashy. That would be redundant.
|6 weeks 2 days ago||Nicely done.||
Nicely done. Thought-provoking for sure, especially about the Injured Players = Special Powers.
I agree about football and basketball both being on the rise for the first time in decades. I go back to the 70s and I'd say that the combination of Hoke and Beilein is the best head coach combo of all. Bo and Johnny Orr reached high levels in the mid-70s, but Beilein is a much better coach than Johnny. Best of all, he won't be leaving because Iowa State offers him more money than Michigan was willing to match.
I just hope Beilein gets another shot at the title. It's so hard to get there. Here's hoping he does, but if he doesn't I won't think any the less of him.
|6 weeks 4 days ago||It's probably safe to say||
It's probably safe to say that that is the first time – and that Mgoblog is the only place – ever to compare Shakespeare's Ophelia to the Florida Gator mascot.
|7 weeks 22 hours ago||I'm sure it means DON'T||
I'm sure it means DON'T TOUCH. Interesting that prior to Bellomy's injury, I don't recall seeing any QB's wearing a red jersey. Methinks it has just become a major point of emphasis.
|7 weeks 3 days ago||Exactly! I was just trying to||
Exactly! I was just trying to say pretty much the same thing… but it didn't occur to me that would be kissing ass. Well, so be it. A joy to read!
|7 weeks 6 days ago||Wonderful! You've captured it||
Wonderful! You've captured it for posterity – I can come back to it to help preserve the memories of last night. There is no limit to what a sufficiently inspired Michigan fan can do!
|8 weeks 3 days ago||"If James Hall and Larry||
"If James Hall and Larry Stevens had a baby, and that baby came out 6-5/260 and immediately ate the doctor."
Great line in a highly educational piece.
|8 weeks 6 days ago||Live by the Fish, die by the||
Live by the Fish, die by the Fish… gave them the freedom to play on the court, and the freedom to play off it. No wonder they wanted to play for him. And no wonder it got out of control.
|10 weeks 2 days ago||Really nice job and an||
Really nice job and an enjoyable read. The Final Four in 89 was in Seattle, where my brother was doing an internship with the city. He was not a hoops fan back then. Some folks from North Carolina came to his office that day and he hit it off with them. They said they had an extra ticket for the game that night (it was in the Kingdome) and invited him. He was a student at Brown at the time, but we are a major Michigan family and he's a big Michigan football fan. He didn't even know who was playing in the game!
It was the first NCAA final to go into OT in something like 25 years, Michigan's only national championship, and to this day it's the only basketball game my brother ever attended. Some people…
|10 weeks 3 days ago||Man, I remember that now!||
Man, I remember that now! That was the closest Indiana came to losing all season. In Bloomington, no less. They beat us three times that year… Let's hope they go 2-1 against us this year.
|10 weeks 3 days ago||I've been a Michigan hoops||
I've been a Michigan hoops fan since the early 70s. I still remember how thrilled I was when we led Indiana at halftime of the 76 NCAA final. I was there when they upset the 79 State team with Magic Johnson that went on to win it all. I watched the talented Frieder teams disappoint, thrilled to the ultimate season in 89, rode the Fab Five wave and suffered through the crash and burn.
John Beilein is by far the best coach Michigan has had in all that time. His teams are as much fun to watch as Johnny Orr's, more talented now than any since the Fab Five, and done the RIGHT WAY.
I was crushed yesterday. Anything short of the Sweet 16 will be a huge disappointment because you don't get a player like Trey Burke very often. But whatever happens, I'll never forget this team, and I'll support coach Beilein to the max no matter what his record going forward. For now, I want a another shot at Indiana on Saturday. Their coach showed what it's like to have a man who isn't John Beilein.
|11 weeks 6 days ago||Amen, Gordie. I never get the||
Amen, Gordie. I never get the least bit angry at players – they are basically just kids. It is much harder to live with egregious-seeming coaching. I couldn't help some not very charitable thoughts about Borges this past season. Al knows exponentially more football than I ever will. But when I can predict certain plays with 99% accuracy, my teeth commence gnashing. I cry out, hire me Brady! I know I can do better!
Eventually I stop punching my pillow, calm down, and try to think about the next game. Because a great thing about sports is that no matter what happens, there's always a next game. Sometimes it's just a loooong wait…
|11 weeks 6 days ago||Nicely put. My disgust at||
Nicely put. My disgust at that loss was tempered by thinking of the Penn State players, coaches and fans: the players played harder and savvier, the coaches had them better prepared, and fans who showed up for a game that was a likely blowout all deserved that experience. I'm sorry it was at Michigan's expense but hey, hats off to the Nittanys.
I'll save unmitigated misery for a loss on Saturday – and hopefully won't need it at all.
|12 weeks 20 hours ago||UCLA! John Wooden is spinning||
UCLA! John Wooden is spinning in his grave faster than an Iranian centrifuge.
|12 weeks 3 days ago||I was a third-generation||
I was a third-generation double legacy. My grandfather was an alum and became the men's counselor (what passed for a psychologist) for the U-M Health Service from the 30s through the 60s. My dad grew up in Ann Arbor and got three Michigan degrees. He lived at home the whole time, got scholarships, and worked part-time at the newsstand in the hospital lobby. He actually made money during college and grad school.
He then went to New York for a career in corporate law. A law school classmate introduced him to his sister, who became my mom. She'd gone to Duke, but her brothers and her father went to Michigan. Decades later, I came across an old commencement program and discovered that both my grandfathers graduated on the same day in 1924 – one from undergrad, one from law school.
During my teen years in the 70s we went to at least one game a year, tailgating at the golf course, and I had many visits to my grandparents. When it came to applying to colleges, I sent my Michigan one in very early, got accepted, and never applied anywhere else.
I had to leave school after two years because of a disabling accident. I eventually graduated from a college near my home, but Michigan has remained a huge part of my life. I've always felt extremely fortunate to be born with Blue blood.
|12 weeks 4 days ago||Reminds me of a brilliant guy||
Reminds me of a brilliant guy I used to race sailboats with. He got a sailing scholarship (!) to Hawaii, had a free blast for a year, then transferred to Harvard.
|12 weeks 4 days ago||Maybe a half part Heiko, at||
Maybe a half part Heiko, at least during football season. His Opponent Watch columns are the most consistently hilarious thing here.
I'm an older reader and I miss a lot of the memes, but that's piddly compared to how much I enjoy most of the writing here. When you do something like the Oklahoma post, it is a hit or miss proposition. I find the relatively few misses easy to overlook. The hits are my favorite thing on the Internet.
Bland writing is everywhere. I come here for pizzazz. Keep it up, dudes – don't let the naysayers get under your skin!
|12 weeks 6 days ago||I've been Michigan hoops fan||
I've been Michigan hoops fan since the mid-70s and John Beilein is the best coach since then. Johnny Orr had a couple of great teams and got to a national championship game in 76, but he wasn't the complete coach Beilein is. If he'd had the support from the athletic department and community Beilein has it might've been different; as it was, I don't blame him for bailing to Iowa State.
Bill Frieder was a great recruiter, a mediocre game coach, and ran a program that sometimes smelled fishy. He too bailed for lack of support, to Arizona State, leading to Steve Fisher and the 89 championship. Fisher seemed like a great fit until his failings began the Dark Ages. Beilein was the right guy at the right time. He's the best basketball mind, the best evaluator of talent, and the best fit temperamentally and ethically. There's no one I'd rather have.
If this team fades down the stretch it'll be a huge disappointment. But my faith in Beilein won't be shaken at all.
|13 weeks 1 day ago||"For stonewalling so politely||
"For stonewalling so politely the extent of the Buckeyes' punishment was to end a 12-0 season with Meyer on the sidelines and Tressel on their shoulders."
Perfect. I wish I'd written that.
|18 weeks 2 days ago||Ah, but Vincent had gotten||
Ah, but Vincent had gotten low himself earlier in the game when he picked up Clowney pass rushing and planted his facemask in Clowney's crotch. Of course, Vincent IS low; it wasn't an intentional dong-headbutt, but the physics of a fearless 5-6 mountain goat stopping a 6-7 ICBM dead in its tracks.
Clowney was down for the count and had to come out for a play or two, but he reportedly did mention to Vince that he was going to exact vengeance. Too bad a blocking screwup gave him the perfect opportunity. And really too bad that the tough-as-nails Vincent Smith will be remembered primarily for a hit he took instead of the many he delivered.
|20 weeks 2 days ago||Excellent diaries! Poor||
Poor Vincent Smith, immortalized for getting slammed by Clowney. It wouldn't be so bad if they also showed Vincent's helmet-to-Clowney's-crotch block early in the second half. I winced for Clowney but couldn't help cracking up. What happens when a 5-6 mountain goat fearlessly lays into a 6-7 behemoth? A face full of gonads and a temporarily felled behemoth writhing in agony. At the time I thought uh-oh, I think we may have just gotten him mad. He sure got his revenge on Vincent.
|23 weeks 1 hour ago||Offseasons already sucked. No||
Offseasons already sucked. No football, no UFRs… and now no Opponent Watch. These are my favorite thing here, which is saying a boatload. If there is something called a Professional Analogizer, Heiko has found his calling.
Hey, how about a hoops version?!
|23 weeks 4 days ago||If I remember correctly,||
If I remember correctly, Stevie Brown's first start at Michigan was in the Horror. He was abused Horribly in that game – the most visible culprit on a defense unprepared for that kind of speedy spread. And that was before Gerg, before Scott Shafer… man! It's so great to see him thriving now, and so disappointing to think about what could've been had he had decent coaching.
|23 weeks 5 days ago||I go back to the Johnny Orr||
I go back to the Johnny Orr days and Beilein is the best coach Michigan hoops has had in that time. Orr was a hoot of a guy and at times a great recruiter, but he wasn't the coach Beilein is. None of the rest even come close. Beilein does things the right way, is by all accounts a high character guy who brings in high character players, and now has built a talented team that's really fun to watch (for the most part). I hope they go far this season but regardless, I'm going to enjoy the ride. Go Blue!
|24 weeks 1 day ago||Right. Gruden is one of the||
Right. Gruden is one of the very few who really gets into the X's and O's. Chris Collinsworth does too, but it seems to me not as much as he used to. The best at this is Mike Mayock of the NFL Network Thursday night games. He also does Notre Dame for NBC. Brian mentioned in the UFR on how excellent he was during this year's Michigan-Notre Dame game.
|25 weeks 1 day ago||Webber wasn't even my||
Webber wasn't even my favorite player of the Fab Five. Jalen had preternatural savvy, and Juwan's post play was a thing of beauty. Webber had a way of disappearing on the floor for stretches, especially on defense. Purely as a player, he became most enjoyable to watch later in his NBA career after the injuries forced him to become a consistently brilliant inside passer.
I'll read the book with gritted teeth, unless it gets reviewed as a total weasel job. I'd like to be able to ignore it but for better and especially worse, he played a huge role in my fan life. It's morbidly fascinating that someone so intelligent and gifted blew it so spectacularly (and I'm not talking about the timeout).
|25 weeks 4 days ago||Not only will the OL be RS||
Not only will the OL be RS freshman aplenty, but only true freshman and walk-ons behind them. The depth situation was pretty dire this year and we mostly lucked out. Next year an injury or two could be ruinous. Take Jack Miller at center. He has potential to be an upgrade, but regardless, who takes over if he gets hurt?
|25 weeks 5 days ago||The best reaction I've seen||
The best reaction I've seen so far. Borges "is not the type of OC who is willing/capable of drastically altering his gameplan within a game, and only sparingly between games."
How much trouble that continues to cause is perhaps the biggest question going forward. Based on Saturday it's hard to be optimistic about that. Let's hope you're right about the OC getting disproportionally credited/blamed.