at least it's not just us?
|7 hours 44 min ago||Earlier today I had a||
Earlier today I had a Dobadaan Mezcale with lunch, which rendered my basically useless for the rest of the day.
|13 hours 24 min ago||I do think that the UM bias||
I do think that the UM bias is showing a bit with the surprise, but at #19 Lewan does feel like a steal. Of course, this is still the same draft that looked at Teddy Bridgewater and figures he will be an NFL star because, I don't know, he beat up on some AAC teams and lost to the one ranked team he saw all year. I think he'll be a decent QB, but these mock drafts almost seem overly reliant on buzz compared to actual measurables after the combines and workouts.
|13 hours 58 min ago||I post it every time||
|14 hours 30 min ago||You earned this trip to||
You earned this trip to Bolivia, so kudoes to you.
|1 day 6 hours ago||I usually agree with Brian,||
I usually agree with Brian, but his, I don't know, distaste for Joe Dumars about not drafting Burke is getting a little extreme. Burke is putting up a better stat sheet than KCP, but that is in large part to (a) being the focus offensively of a pretty horrible basketball team, and (b) playinh a buttload of minutes. I mean, he scored 30 points by playing 40 minutes and shooting 20 times. And the game before, he scored 3 points in 31 minutes against Miami, and he took 8 shots to do it. Hell, he scored 19 points on 19 shots against Portland. On a competent team, your PG doesn't shoot those shots, and unless he suddenly gets bigger and stronger those tough inside shots aren't going to get easier with defenders bodying him up.
Those are fine numbers, but it does feel a bit like Burke is putting up junk numbers on a crap team, and I'm not sold he'll put up these types of performances with more talent around him. I do think he'll be an above-average guard in the league for years, but just because he's had a good month-ish run doesn't mean he's a future star. Jennings had at least as good of a run to start his career, and according to Brian he's not even Burke's equal now.
And as others have noted, let's not ignore the fact that Burke is a pretty mediocre defensive player, midcourt steals and pwning of Appling aside. KCP is a much better fit defensively for the Pistons, and going forward feels like the better fit for the team as constructed. I loved what Burke did here at UM, but I'm not sold he's going to be the superstar some people want him to be.
|1 day 16 hours ago||Yeah, I was wondering the||
Yeah, I was wondering the same thing. Lewan always seems to handle the athletic elements of the game just fine; at times his, um, "passion" has been his undoing, but other than a couple of random plays he rarely seems out of place or unable to recover.
|1 day 16 hours ago||Hopefully we'll get a point||
Hopefully we'll get a point in the near future where having two female referees isn't a noteworthy moment, but good on them for getting a chance to officiate a bowl game.
|1 day 16 hours ago||Sounds like he'll fit right||
Sounds like he'll fit right in at USC.
|2 days 15 hours ago||I'll have to stop by the||
I'll have to stop by the cupcake place next time I'm back in my home town. I always like Maceo when he played at UM.
|2 days 15 hours ago||Considering last season, I'm||
Considering last season, I'm fine hanging out in the top-5 and keeping everyone healthy (obviously Compher injury excepted).
|2 days 15 hours ago||that's just a rough way to||
that's just a rough way to end a great play. I almost think they should give the benefit of the doubt since everything is usually riding on human reaction to a whistle and and in-bound play, so that fraction of second is really due to human response time as much as some all-knowing "clock" when the play starts.
|2 days 16 hours ago||As everyone basically noted,||
As everyone basically noted, we are talking about 10 games for these young guys, including a couple of games against elite competition. I do think Walton will come along quicker, but Irvin should be more comfortable both in the flow of the offense as well as his role on the court to get those numbers up to expected performance.
|2 days 20 hours ago||Considering we're talking about 2015 right now,||
Considering we're talking about 2015 right now, I'll get more worried after this class signs. A tough loss, but I'm not worried to much yet.
|3 days 13 hours ago||Maybe. Honestly, they||
Maybe. Honestly, they drafted Mateen and that didn't work out, and while it would be fun for a bit to watch Burke play for the Pistons, picking the "hometown" guy inevitably wears out people's love for him unless he is transcendant. I mean, Burke is going to have a rough patch where he shoots poorly and doesn't defend well, and if you are watching him every night you'll start seeing his flaws and it will probably alter your view of him. To me, he's still a great player at UM who went off and played in the middle of the mountains for a non-ironically named basketball team. That makes me a heck of a lot happier.
Also, watching a guy play well on a crappy team isn't that much fun to me, and without KCP I don't think they pull of the Jennings trade and this team struggles even more with a smallish PG and no wing defenders.
|3 days 13 hours ago||Yeah, I'll admit that KCP||
Yeah, I'll admit that KCP isn't in the same league talent-wise as KD, but ignoring the talent differences between those two squads to prove a point seems unnecessary. This year has had enough heartbreak without crapping on draft picks by the Pistons.
|3 days 13 hours ago||Yeah, nobody deserves to be||
Yeah, nobody deserves to be burned this badly, at least not for being an ass on tha radio. That said, I do find it humorous that the injury happened while ordering a Flaming Tomahawk steak, which is the most Shock Jock food name I could think of.
|3 days 15 hours ago||Yeah, I have to agree. Brian||
Yeah, I have to agree. Brian loves Burke for his time in college, and I get that, but as an NBA player he would have been a mediocre fit in Detroit and, honestly, the jury is still out on both KCP and Burke with their professional careers.
And I know Brian took a shot at KCP for his struggles getting Georgia to the tourney, but let's not forget Burke (in theory) had 3-4 NBA-level players on that roster to work with. Call me next time anyone from Georgia gets drafted.
|3 days 15 hours ago||To be fair, the fact that||
To be fair, the fact that most of the tough losses in basketball were in championship games takes the sting off. I mean, I was at UM during the Ellerbe/Amaker transition; talk about irrelevance + losing.
|3 days 20 hours ago||Find the best guy available||
Find the best guy available and move on. This franchise is going to somehow have one of the best RBs and one of the best WRs in history and have maybe two-three playoff wins to show for it.
|4 days 3 hours ago||He's not one of the top 10||
He's not one of the top 10 problems with this team.
|4 days 3 hours ago||The Lions by far. They have||
The Lions by far. They have more than enough talent to be running away with this division, but probably will finish at .500 because they can't seem to get out of their own ways. UM at least has the excuse of age.
|4 days 6 hours ago||To be fair, I don't anyone||
To be fair, I don't anyone knows the severity of his injuries save for Gardner and the coaching staff, and who knows if they have a full read. Playing hurt can definitely increase your risk of more grievous injury if it changes how you move and play the game, as you may expose yourself to a hit, a change in direction, etc. you normally wouldn't have because you are compensating. So just because you won't "over-turf" a turf toe injury, for example, it doesn't mean you couldn't plan your leg in a weird way trying to compensate and possibly tweaking a back muscle or something, for example.
|4 days 6 hours ago||Listen, I totally care about||
Listen, I totally care about wins and losses. But I do think that there is a segment of fans who looked at this season and how it transpired and are mentally checked out until 2014. They'll be happy UM won, but a December 28th game late at night probably won't lead to a massive liveblog around these parts.
|4 days 6 hours ago||This was already discussed,||
This was already discussed, but still good by MSU for finding a way to reward the fans. That said, they usually have trouble filling that stadium, so it's not like these fans have been diehards over the years.
|4 days 12 hours ago||It will be interesting to see how PSU's recruiting||
It will be interesting to see how PSU's recruiting handles the potential departure of O'Brien. He was basically the anti Kiffin; keeping then competitive during sanctions but probably not a long term solution.
|4 days 12 hours ago||I hope he gets a chance to play, if for no other||
I hope he gets a chance to play, if for no other reason than to keep Shane Morris alive. But at the same time, if he is injured I would rather him sit and recover rather than risk injury. The seniors still want to go or on a win, but I'm sure they don't want to push a teammate in the process.
|4 days 12 hours ago||I does matter from a W/L perspective. Whether or||
I does matter from a W/L perspective. Whether or not the fans care is the issue
|4 days 15 hours ago||Yeah, it kind of had to||
Yeah, it kind of had to happen that way. I'm not a huge NBA fan, but Burke would have been a meh fit for this Pistons team (though his outside shooting could have helped with spacing, I guess, despite it being pretty poor right now), and I'm fine with Dumars not going for the "hometown" kid to goose some ticket sales for a week or two. Personally, I've seen enough of KCP to really like what he can do defensively, and when you are trying to win you need guys who can play roles, not just be good shooters and scorers.
|4 days 15 hours ago||I agree. The profile says||
I agree. The profile says guys like Walton figure it out and take a nice step forward as the season progresses, and I think Spike is the Vinny Johnson-type who can come in and give a lift to the second unit but who flounders getting starter minutes and having to play defense for an extended period of time.
|4 days 15 hours ago||I know this dumb and isn't||
I know this dumb and isn't the point of the post, but can we drop it with the Dumars and Burke complaint? Pope has been fine, and for all of Burke's greatness so far he is the #1 option on a crappy team, while Pope has a more defined position as a defensive wingman and shooter and has been really good in that capacity. This just feels like selectively piling on for its own sake, which just seems silly.
As for the game and the team, I'm less bothered than Brian about this squad. They are still rounding into form and have played all of their 4 losses tight, and really haven't had a crazy miracle win save for (I guess) FSU, and looking at the conference I see teams that are ripe for losses. And 17-13 probably does get you into the tournament, provided some of thoses wins are against quality opponents. But I still think this team can pull out a couple of wins and get to 18-19 wins, which would lock them in.
|5 days 7 hours ago||It sucks that he had to go,||
It sucks that he had to go, but when you haven't beaten your main rival in over a decade a change needs to occur, I guess.
I'm sure they'll find a nice replacement, and he'll probably keep the offense the same simply because I'm not sure what other options he'll have. I guess if you happen to have a decent passer you could try to spread them out a bit more and run a Denard-type passing offense with a running core, but there are only so many options out there given the fact that the service academies don't really "recruit" in the classic sense.
|5 days 13 hours ago||As pointed out below, what's||
As pointed out below, what's so crazy about that comparison? Manningham and Arrington were good college WRs, but Gallon and Funchesss are no slouches and had the added burden of a dodgy offensive line and crappy running game restricting what the playcalling capabilities to a good degree. Gallon is one of the better WRs this school has seen, and just because he doesn't look the part shouldn't diminish his dominance.
|5 days 13 hours ago||Good to hear. Always felt||
Good to hear. Always felt like the concern of him switching was more fear than reality, but still happy to see Peppers stay in the fold. I do wonder if a solid bowl performance will help to reel in a last-minute commit or two. With the shakeup at Texas and (I suspect) changes at other places, you never know.
|5 days 13 hours ago||And what makes it sadder is||
And what makes it sadder is that Cox is averaging a "robust" 2.1 ypc.
|6 days 6 hours ago||I think 19 wins sounds right,||
I think 19 wins sounds right, though none of their losses look "bad" by any stretch. I mean, ISU, Charlotte, Duke, and Arizona are perfectly fine losses, and that FSU win might help out if they can make the tourney. Plus, outside of Duke all the losses were pretty close, so at least optically it won't be some horrible blowout.
That said, I'd love them to win both MSU and Wiscy at home, and probably hold serve against Iowa and Minny. OSU, to me, seems like a bit of a paper tiger, simply because they haven't really played anyone of note (their two best wins are probably MD and Marquette, neither of which have been great so far). That could be a stolen game if UM can play well.
|6 days 6 hours ago||I guess my concern with||
I guess my concern with Robinson is that he has always felt like a secondary player; a really fun, explosive secondary player, but one who really relies on his teammates and the offense to work to his strengths. Last year he looked great because Trey Burke set him up; this year, he's been up-and-down because the team isn't as strong overall. I thought he played a great first half, but with only 4 points and a single rebound in the second half it just seemed like he melted into the background again. I understand that the offense does flow through other guys at times, but part of the reason seems to be that he lacks something (vision, passing ability, one-on-one skills, whatever) to make it logical for the offense to work through him. I suspect he'll continue to have an up-and-down season as teams adjust (it was weird to see Arizona not help, but I figure they didn't see the need), but I'm definitely hoping that the first half version sticks around more than the second half.
|6 days 6 hours ago||No, I recognize that part. I||
No, I recognize that part. I am referring more to the consensual nature of the engagement. Winston always admitted to having sexual intercourse with her, but it does sound like the State was a bit too quick to dismiss claims that she was unable to provide proper consent that evening. And yes, this is the type of case that makes everyone feel icky because sometimes what is legal and what it culturally acceptable can diverge.
|6 days 6 hours ago||Technically, he doesn't have||
Technically, he doesn't have it anymore. But yeah, unless they find him guilty I think he'll keep it.
|6 days 6 hours ago||His problem has always been||
His problem has always been that guys before him at Alabama have done reasonably well, and with all the talent they have it doesn't feel like he has had to "earn" it like other guys. I agree it is unfair, since it's not like Winston is playing with a bunch of MAC guys out there.
|6 days 6 hours ago||This was a weird vote, since||
This was a weird vote, since probably the two best players (Manziel and Winston) both had baggage to varying degrees. Congrats to Winston for the win, but I sure hope it doesn't come out that something did happen that night. Regardless, I honestly forgot it was even going on today.
|6 days 8 hours ago||I'd love to see the pirate||
I'd love to see the pirate run that team, but I'd be terrified for every working girl and streetwalker in Austin because Craig James would be on a rampage trying to stop it.
|6 days 9 hours ago||Oh yes, please jump to that||
Oh yes, please jump to that conclusion from what I said.
Listen, I get that you want to convince everyone that DB is a great AD and we are all blind to that brilliance. But maybe, just maybe, he's not as perfect as we all hope, and for every positive he's done (improvements to Crisler, his handling of Stretch-gate, UTL, etc.), he's also screwed the pooch. In summation, he's a human being who is performing a difficult job decently. If you want me to concede anything more, you better give a whole much more information than your empty platitudes.
|6 days 9 hours ago||Bill Martin was doing just as||
Bill Martin was doing just as much to improve facilities and the UM "brand" when he was the AD. Nobody is saying Dave Brandon is a bad AD or isn't looking out for UM, but stop acting like he's cracked the Rosetta Stone of athletics by improving facilities and "benefitting the ATHLETES" by, I don't know, getting Beyonce to record a halftime speech.
|6 days 9 hours ago||Well, the last time UM was||
Well, the last time UM was looking for a coach they were turned down by a couple of major-name guys (Harbaugh and Miles were known, and I also remember hearing guys like Schiano and Peterson thrown around), and while Hoke has proven to be a good fit nobody else was knocking down his door after going 9-4 at SDSU.
I think a big name coach would consider UM, but we saw how RR was treated and how prickly this fanbase can be. Not all coaches are dying to go to a place with a shrinking recruiting base locally, a history of being resistant to change, and a fanbase that can be a bit fair-weather, especially when there are programs across the country that can offer similar salaries and amenities. I think what we've seen the past half-dozen years is that UM is a good job and one people want to investigate, but like in recruiting UM can't just point at someone and tell them they are coaching here. They have to compete for these top guys, and given their recent track record that hasn't always turned out great.
|6 days 9 hours ago||Ah yes, because the UM brand||
Ah yes, because the UM brand was so weak before he showed up. Only when the great Pizza Baron stepped foot onto campus did the misbegotten Michigan name return to its proper stature as a national brand.
I was being a bit sarcastic, but acting like he has overhauled one of the most valuable brands in college sports is silly. He's definitely brought a more "ambitious" thrust to the UM marketing department, but he has also found ways to alienate a large number of his customers and alumni. He's a competent AD, but failing to bring school bands to national games, raising ticket prices under the guise of "adaptive" and "fluid" pricing, and failing to even maintain the veneer of "amateur" athletics doesn't make him a visionary. And let's stop with the notion that UM would be in the stoneage without him putting hashtags on the field and putting a f'ing noodle in front of the stadium and skyrighting "Go Blue" in East Lansing.
|6 days 9 hours ago||It blew my mind that the game||
It blew my mind that the game was decided by a missed PAT. Just a crazy ending to a pretty fun game.
|6 days 9 hours ago||Probably time for him to go,||
Probably time for him to go, but I wonder if they'll try to stay in-house (maybe Major Applewhite?) or try to nab someone. I guess Petterson is the big name out there now, but I do wonder who is going to be available and who would fit in culturally. So what you will about Brown, but he seemed to keep everyone happy down there for most of his tenure.
|6 days 13 hours ago||I was pleasantly surprised by||
I was pleasantly surprised by the team today. I know it was a loss, but this was a squad that needed to show it could hang with the elite teams after that disheartening loss to Duke, and this felt like the type of performance that portends better days in March. Yes, Robinson disappeared again, but Cavert felt like he took a step forward as a second option, and Mitch looked healthy and solid against elite athletes. Nik shot reasonably well, though I'm not a fan of that last shot because there was more than enough time on the clock for a better look, but that happens.
A loss is still a loss, but looking at the conference and how this team has performed, it still feels like a top-5 seed team that could definitely make a run with a couple of breaks. It definitely doesn't look like a team that isn't capable of keeping pace with teams that are "better" than them.
|6 days 13 hours ago||I support anything that Dave||
I support anything that Dave Brandon could turn into a profit-generating entity, such as the "Maize Rage sponsored by Ortega Dip Supports You" banner.
|6 days 13 hours ago||I would remind people||
I would remind people complaining about 2013 that it was the year UM made it to the NCAA championship game for the first "official" time since 1989. Losing a couple of close games in the early part of the season doesn't strike me as the most horrible thing in history.
|6 days 15 hours ago||Tough loss, but a good||
Tough loss, but a good performance overall. That foul call at the end will drive me crazy all year.
|6 days 17 hours ago||This feels like a close-ish||
This feels like a close-ish loss, but who knows. UM did play reasonably well against Duke despite being in an offensive funk; maybe they'll have better luck against Arizona. I do think that having played another big team in FSU will help; at least the idea of massive rebounders won't be foreign to them.
|1 week 11 hours ago||I'm sure some is coaching,||
I'm sure some is coaching, but as noted having a bunch of kids in the system multiple years is better than just age averaged out. And to be fair, Lewan and Schofield weren't the problem with the line.
|1 week 15 hours ago||Because you do want some||
Because you do want some continuity when you have to replace guys. Also, having a deep tree usually means you have young coaches who are motivated and (you hope) a positive in recruiting. Having a bunch of old guys who seem content leads to stagnation and being surprised by spread offenses run by FCS teams.
|1 week 15 hours ago||Miller should probably leave||
Miller should probably leave but won't, though I kind of doubt his stock will be much different to NFL teams. I guess he should at least get a degree.
|1 week 1 day ago||To be fair, after watching||
To be fair, after watching that secondary the last 4-5 games, it really shouldn't surprise anyone how stupid this is in practice. Still, it boggles my mind that they basically have 4 coordinators for two positions.
|1 week 1 day ago||GERG has been coaching for||
GERG has been coaching for decades as well. Just because inertia is a strong force in coaching retention doesn't mean every guy in line deserves to be paid.
|1 week 1 day ago||Yeah, I never understood the||
Yeah, I never understood the hype. He was a hard-throwing reliever; those players are not that hard to come by, especially ones who can't stay healthy.
I knew the base was falling out when they tried to move him to the rotation, but he does have some endurance for long relief. If he sees any time on the roster, I'd have to expect it would be in that capacity.
|1 week 1 day ago||They mention how the talent||
They mention how the talent at ILB is pretty shallow; that boggles my mind, simply becuase you'd think there would be at least a couple of athletes at other LB positions you could shift in there.
Regardless, loving how the class is shaping up. Still some time to go on a couple of recruits, but this feels like a solid outfit with some potential to be great.
|1 week 1 day ago||(No subject)||
|1 week 1 day ago||I think a real litmus test||
I think a real litmus test for the conference will be what happens with MSU next year. OSU and UM are recruiting well, PSU should return to their pre-Sandusky levels of national relevance in due time, Wisconsin will continue fielding really solid teams that can occassionally be great, and Minny and Indiana have some identities that will at least make them consistent performers along with Iowa, with IU having the highest variability (I could definitely see them have one of those Big-12 seasons where they score 60+ points and give up 50+, and win anywhere from 9-10 games to 3-4).
But MSU's recent success seems to come from solid player development as well as some fortuitous timing with consistent conference powers PSU, UM, and OSU going through various valleys between 2008 and 2012. While MSU has "had" UM's number in recent time, history is not full of less-talented squads consistently staying ahead of top-10 recruiting teams with (I hope) competent coaching staffs. So it will be interesting to see if they can turn this run of success into a sustainable program, or if this is a bit like those mid-00's Iowa teams that had some nice success but couldn't sustain suck heights.
|1 week 2 days ago||I'm not sure about the||
I'm not sure about the poster, but let's not forget that the UM job opened up after RR's bowl loss. And more importantly, when a major program like USC, Texas, etc. makes a move, that can set off a ripple as schools have to fill moving coaches. It could well end with Narduzzi getting a shot at a team you don't even think about because the popular HC moves somewhere else. For example, Boise St. had to find a new HC when Peterson left; that could happen other places without warning.
|1 week 2 days ago||To be fair, Edsall "won" at||
To be fair, Edsall "won" at UConn to the tune of a bunch of 8-5 seasons. That's fine, but it isn't necessarily a place that has immense upward mobility. You can recruit there somewhat, but (a) it will probably always be a basketball school, and (b) it plays in such a mediocre conference that the perception of it being second-rate will hurt going after kids that give you a chance at the top. I think it is a good enough job for most guys, but if you are Narduzzi this probably going to be your one chance at a top job unless you absolutely blow up at UConn; I'm not sure that will happen and if not, you'll just be the guy who presided over a 7-8 win team for years.
|1 week 2 days ago||I'm a bit surprised that he||
I'm a bit surprised that he passed UConn because it has potential of being a pretty good team in the future with the right recruiting, but I'm guessing that he is either waiting on a better offer or he honestly wants to stick around in EL. But looking at the roster for next year, that team will undoubtedly take a (smallish) step back, but that might be enough to eliminate many of his options.
Regardless, he's a good DC and if he wants to be an HC, he'll get his chance. I do remember a particularly senior poster around here saying he spoke to Narduzzi on a flight or something and thought he wasn't quite the type to handle the alumni events, politicking, recruiting, etc. related to coaching, so he might be content to stick around under Dantonio and just be a coach. There are worst futures than getting paid to do your job well.
|1 week 2 days ago||Seriously? I honestly don't||
Seriously? I honestly don't have an issue with the guy; I think he's not nearly as good as some people think he is at QB, but he's done nothing to offend or otherwise bother me except play at MSU. And given he played with guys like Worthy and Gholston, I give him extra credit for not wanting to kick either of them in the balls for being idiots.
|1 week 2 days ago||But I disagree with the fact||
But I disagree with the fact that you are a dirty jerk who doesn't know anything about sports and is trying to ruin my memories of UM football with your stupid "facts" and "history". So I'm going to downvote you into oblivion, like America would.
|1 week 2 days ago||You can have my points when||
You can have my points when you neg them out of my cold, dead hands!
|1 week 2 days ago||I'm so happy!||
|1 week 3 days ago||I would argue Chris Perry was a meh back until his||
I would argue Chris Perry was a meh back until his senior year, even with a decent junior campaign. All guys take time, and I'm not ready to pass judgment on either guy just because of this season.
|1 week 3 days ago||Oh yeah, totally. I mean, I||
Oh yeah, totally. I mean, I totally forgot about the "Different School" fighting Humans and their star back Running Back.
Seriously, nobody is going to argue that the backs have been unspectacular, but you are seriously grasping for strawmen if you are able to make a clear determination on the abilities of either of these freshmen after limited and disjointed first seasons.
|1 week 3 days ago||And to be fair about Sanders,||
And to be fair about Sanders, he had a couple of Pro Bowlers in Lomas Brown and Kevin Glover during his career, so it's not like he was lining up behind a horrible front. Of course, had he played behind those mammoth Dallas lines like Smith...
|1 week 3 days ago||I totally forgot about Curtis||
I totally forgot about Curtis Enis, who got hurt in the pros and never did anything but was pretty scary in college.
And look at little Tim Couch, future #1 bust along with #2 bust Ryan Leaf.
|1 week 3 days ago||To be fair, this has been||
To be fair, this has been brought up before in other Godzilla movies and shows and (I believe) the argument proferred is that his radioactive skin is particularly repulsive and can also dissipate the energy from bombs effectively. And he can be hurt; some of the Japanese movies specifically showed him running away when the big guns were brought out because they could hurt him.
Also, it's a hundred-foot dinosaur that spits fire; I'm not going for realism.
|1 week 3 days ago||I could make an Al Borges||
I could make an Al Borges joke here, but at this point the guy has taken too much of a beating.
|1 week 3 days ago||I know Alabama will do what||
I know Alabama will do what it can to keep Saban, but Texas is on a different plane financially and, frankly, it isn't a community or school that would balk at paying Saban whatever he wants. I think he stays at Alabama because I'm not sure Texas is anything other than a lateral move for him at this point, but the notion that Texas will be caught in a numbers trap doesn't seem right to me.
|1 week 3 days ago||I really like this trade.||
I really like this trade. Detroit was slow and full of defensive liabilities last year. This year, they'll give up some power but that outfield should have significantly better range as well as (I hope) some improved baserunning. Going station-to-station like this team needed to last year really hurt, especially in the playoffs. Davis isn't going to set the world on fire, but any guy with that type of speed will keep pitchers honest and can be disruptive even if his OBP is pretty meh.
|1 week 3 days ago||I'm not disagreeing that Green may be better, but||
I'm not disagreeing that Green may be better, but I have a hard time understanding how anyone else could really point to a couple of carries for either guy and see clear greatness or mediocrity. The line was atrocious in front of them, and when each had their chances they played well enough. Personally, I think Green received miss varies because of his size and, perhaps, as a blocker. But I could definitely see a Cadillac Williams and Ronnie Brown situation, which Borges is fairly comfortable with.
|1 week 4 days ago||Shock the||
Shock the world
|1 week 4 days ago||To be fair, you could also||
To be fair, you could also look at those box scores and say "how did UM win 7 games while nearly losing to Akron and UConn?" Luck pretty much evened out this year; mediocrity is what resulted.
|1 week 4 days ago||I'm reasonably impressed with||
I'm reasonably impressed with that pass defense, given the teams they play in the B12 and their style. Running...not so much. UM should basically just run KSU's offense against them, so of course I should expect nothing other than 7-step drops and off-tackle to the right, ALWAYS THE RIGHT!
|1 week 4 days ago||I guess that is what happens when Juggalos North||
I guess that is what happens when Juggalos North and Juggalos South meet up doe a game.
|1 week 5 days ago||Surprised OSU is playing||
Surprised OSU is playing Clemson, but I guess that's how the BCS pairing went down. That will be one of those Holiday Bowl track meets, so at least fans will see some fireworks.
MSU and Stanford is going to be one of those close games that feels like a rock fight until you look up and see the socre is 24-21.
|1 week 5 days ago||They'll be competent on||
They'll be competent on offense and pretty good on defense. Losing the players they have this year will be significant, and all the player development of 3* players doesn't replace a decent number of NFL players in a single year. I think their offense will be better next year with Cook, and maybe that will make up for a step back on defense. I figure they'll win 8-10 games next year as well. Losing Narduzzi will probably hurt a bit too, but Dantonio knows how to coach and will keep them humming along. They are a good team, and they'll be a tough out for years to come.
That said, I do think this little stretch will be the apex for this team, just because of a bunch of factors that were out of their control. OSU, PSU, andUM have been going through various struggles the past couple of seasons to various degrees, and that has helped MSU snag players and maintain stability while other squads have been unsettled. But PSU should get over the hump in 2-3 years, UM seems largely back on track in terms of recruiting and (I suspect) player development, and OSU probably won't go undefeated for another 20+ games but is obviously a class leader in the conference. This MSU team reminds me a bit of those Iowa teams from years past; a couple of seasons they look dominant and then they hit a bit of a rough patch with player development and recruiting and they struggle. MSU will be a really good team in this conference as long as Dantonio sticks around, but I don't think the rest of the conference is going to let them get too far away.
|1 week 5 days ago||Kind of like how UM was the||
Kind of like how UM was the best 4-loss team last year. I think they have a chance, but that LSU offense is a lot better than in years past, and you have to think that defense will ve stout despite some struggles.
|1 week 5 days ago||I never thought I'd be||
I never thought I'd be pinning for the Alamo Bowl, but jebus. The "Copper Bowl"? What is this, Grapes of Wrath-inspired naming conventions? What's next, the Joad Cup?
|1 week 5 days ago||That was an absolutely silly||
That was an absolutely silly game. This team feels like a .500 squad, which is probably good enough to win this crap division.
|1 week 5 days ago||I'd like an 8-team playoff||
I'd like an 8-team playoff and just remove one regular-season game; financially I'm guessing certain conferences would complain but for competitiveness it wouldn't disrupt all but the top couple of teams.
|1 week 5 days ago||Cedar Village is barely a||
Cedar Village is barely a step above a tinderbox most years, so I'm surprised it was just couches that burned.
For once, though, I guess they "deserve" to burn stuff. They are having by far the best season in East Lansing in decades.
|1 week 5 days ago||The officla OSU recap says||
The officla OSU recap says Hall didn't play, but I'll take that with a grain of salt.
|1 week 5 days ago||I know the point of this||
I know the point of this thread is to highlight the hypocrisy displayed by a bunch of anonymous people on the internet complaining about a rival, but who cares? What in Urban Meyer's past would have led anyone to believe he would have come down particularly hard on Marcus Hall? The fact he did keep him out (I've seen different reports saying he played a couple of plays and the official OSU site saying he didn't), I guess, is commendable after he flipped the double bird on national TV and was chastised by the conference. That said, a broken clock is still right twice a day, so just because Meyer kind of followed through on a promise doesn't make me think we'll see a new level of upstanding, thoughtful behavior out of the Shoe.
|1 week 6 days ago||There is still more than||
There is still more than enough time for MSU to Sparty away this game.
|1 week 6 days ago||Kind of funny that even the||
Kind of funny that even the announcers are trolling MSU. Hopefully nobody sends the tape to Dantonio until he gets on the plane home.
|1 week 6 days ago||MSU's defense is absolutely||
MSU's defense is absolutely destroying OSU's offense, even with with that one drive.
|1 week 6 days ago||See, I think the narrative||
See, I think the narrative will be that Auburn's offense is terrifying and they put up 59 against and SEC defense. OSU's offense gets knocked down a bit for playing against pretty turrible defenses save for MSU.
|1 week 6 days ago||I blows my mind that MSU only||
I blows my mind that MSU only gives up 48% completion percentage.
|1 week 6 days ago||Stupid weak spread rushing||
Stupid weak spread rushing attack. Only works in the SEC.
Oh yeah, I'm testing the new trolling edicts here.
|1 week 6 days ago||OSU should win this game, but||
OSU should win this game, but I don't trust their defense. And they are not going to run MSU off the field, so it will be interesting to see how Urban responds to Auburn's impressive win.
|2 weeks 6 hours ago||I know neither of these teams||
I know neither of these teams could catch a cold on defense, but man it is fun watching teams just try to out-Madden each other on every series.
|2 weeks 7 hours ago||I guess I've never seen the||
I guess I've never seen the major issues with disagreeing with Brian or anyone else on the site; he seems to have more an issue with disagreement for the sake of promoting discord. Everyone's tolerance is different, but there is a way to be a combative but thoughtful ass and a way to simply be annoying. I figure M-Wolverine and mejunglechop can just start new accounts if they really want to post around here, but I'm guessing they won't, or at least not with the same tact. But nobody is holding a gun to anyone's head, and if I got banned I could just create a new account and start over again. While I continue to hold out hope that my MGoPoints can be exchanged for fabulous prizes, and think their only value is as a reminder of how bored I'm at work for the past 5 years. I highly doubt Brian or the staff will be banning people beyond the absolute worst, and maybe a couple of redeemable characters were cut down as a well, but sometimes that happens.
|2 weeks 7 hours ago||As one of the longer-tenured||
As one of the longer-tenured posters here, I'm happy Brian is voicing his opinions and doing what he wants to with the site. I agree that banning certain long-time posters for being, let's say "catankerous", might be a bit draconian, but that is Brian's choice and, to be honest, it didn't much seem like they enjoyed posting here much. Now they can create new accounts, comment as they wish, and see how it all shakes out. There are numerous other sites that talk about UM sports in this world, and I'm sure they can find a more receptive audience at one of them if they are unhappy with the conditions at MGoBlog.
My issue with the decision isn't so much people's claims of a hive mind starting here, because that feels like a weak slippery slope argument that reads to me as "I don't like people disagreeing with ME, though I'm fine with them disagreeing with someone else." I recognize that any place can become an echo chamber, but I've dealt with enough people around here saying it's raining even though I can see the raised dog leg above me to know that sometimes people just have their opinions, man, and they are not going to change them regardless of reality. It has a great deal to do with the ownership issue Brian brought up, and that's why I've never felt too attached to this site as some voice for the voiceless. I come to the calming shores of MGoBlog for a break from life and to discuss a sport culture I am part of; it is also the employment (and passion) of Brian and his staff. They have a vested interest in it representing themselves; I'm just a yahoo who was too lazy to create an avatar and now can slink under the radar.
It was a trying season and I think the board reflected that; the lack of voting allowed issues to fester that have always existed but are usually pushed aside or hidden by early responders. I'm happy it will be back, and I'm guessing most of the contentious issues we've seen this season will disippate as a result. I do hope the site doesn't become too ban-happy, because good conversation is essential; I doubt it will become an issue, as Brian seems pretty even-keel. And if the winds do shift and it becomes undesirable around these parts for me, I'll move on. But I'm happy that Brian has put his feelings and plans in print so that everyone is aware of how this great site will continue to mature and grow.
|2 weeks 1 day ago||Maybe, but guys so dither sometimes before||
Maybe, but guys so dither sometimes before committing. Dawson jumps to mind
|2 weeks 1 day ago||Sounds like the team is||
Sounds like the team is rounding into form, and sometimes you do have bad days. I mean, MSU was just run off the court by UNC at home. Not saying they are the same teams, but sometimes you just have a bad day against a good team. Glad to see the leadership is there, though.
|2 weeks 1 day ago||I wondered where that lightning bolt came from||
I wondered where that lightning bolt came from when I was walking home yesterday. I apologize, and offer up one of my illegitimate children as sacrifice. They are gamey but high in God-pleasing fiber.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||They are still trying to||
They are still trying to figure out life without Burke. He clearly covered up for some issues last year, and GRIII has simply not been as polished a player without Burke setting him up. I think Mitch is playing decently considering his injury, and Stauskas is a dangerous player when he isn't lining up against Duke when nobody else is hitting shots. Personally, I'm loving Caris and his maturation this year; I think he'll be a all-conference player by the end of his career. As for the freshman, I'm still not sure. They look good at times, but Walton has struggled offensively and Irvin hasn't really lit it up.
This is a 4/5 seed given the conference; I will take that after losing Burke and Hardaway.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||Pope has been fine for the||
Pope has been fine for the Pistons, and while I like Burke a great deal I'm not sure he'd be any better on this team than Jennings. I'm happy for Burke that he is having a good start to the year, but that doesn't mean Dumars screwed up not taking him.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||Sure didn't seem that much of||
Sure didn't seem that much of a joke. Also, how about we pump the brakes with the casual swearing, even though it makes you look totally cool.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||True, but I'd counter that we||
True, but I'd counter that we also added Minitron, one of the best RB commits in the country, still had two NFL-quality OTs, and a much better QB at throwing the ball and can do a reasonable facsimile as a runner.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||And there are maybe a dozen||
And there are maybe a dozen teams that could do that consistently. All is not lost.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Might need to reformat a||
Might need to reformat a bit.
If it is Georgia, that feels about right. They'll be with Murray, but they are still a good enough team with (some) of their injured players likely coming back.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Since I was alive and happy||
Since I was alive and happy with 1997, I say stay the course and just run a f'ing offense that can score against most teams. Really, UM isn't some left-behind team with no talent; have a coherent vision and this team has a chance at a title. Hell, 2006 was one win away from at least playing for a title. It's not THAT long ago that this team had a shot.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||This is sophomoric, but man I||
This is sophomoric, but man I wish we had upvotes right now.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||Detroit wouldn't have been in||
Detroit wouldn't have been in this trouble if it had adopted a means to defend against the spread...of crushing poverty, political indifference, shifting economic conditions in the nation, and local strife between city and suburban residents.
Oh yeah, and Braxton Miller and Carlos Hyde. Can't forget those to. Still, I blame GERG and Brandon.
|2 weeks 3 days ago||I'm not disagreeing with the||
I'm not disagreeing with the fact that Borges is an upgrade over DeBord, but if Borges only brings his A game 2-3 times a season, I don't think that is wortg crowing about. A broken clock is still right twice a day, a blind squirrel can still find a nut, cliche, cliche, cliche. Borges is coming back and I hope he proves me wrong, but I have a bad feeling we'll all be complaining about the same issues next year, only this time with fewer victories to show for it.
|2 weeks 4 days ago||I've always liked Fister so||
I've always liked Fister so I'm torn, but he has a ceiling and I think we've seen it. If they think Smyly or Porcello can step in and this frees up space for Sherzer, it makes sense. Plus, maybe they'll get a couple of nice pieces back. Dombrowski has been making the right calls recently, so I'll give him my vote.
|2 weeks 4 days ago||I agree about there being a||
I agree about there being a hive mind around here that regresses to the agro mindset that exists with this fanbase. I thank you for thinking I provide well-reasoned thoughts, but I'll admit to going off the handle a bit when it comes to certain topics. And I do think this site can get stuck in that mindset, especially with the lack of moderation and posting quotas that allow certain crap to permeate. And I agree with Brian in the podcast saying there are some bullies here, which totally exists amongst the older members, and that needs to stop. Just because I've been a poster here for years doesn't give me an particularly superior knowledge, and I remember Steve Sherik basically leaving the site for some time because a couple of posters acted like they knew more becuase of tenure instead of, you know, actual functional knowledge. Good ideas and thoughtful analysis can come from anywhere, and as the big top draws more people in we are seeing that.
I suspect moderation will be back soon enough, and it will be welcome. I'm sure we'll see abuse; I remember guys getting negbanged to hell because they had the temerity to wonder if RR's offense wasn't the most super awesome in the world, and that the team's defense was so atrocious that it almost didn't matter. But if it comes back, it will help not only the community but also the overall site, as the mods will be able to focus on useful topics and improvements, not just chasing trolls around.
As for Al Borges, which seems to be at the center of this site's most recent holy war: I do think that Al Borges can be a decent OC, and people saying he's an idiot who can't coach are missing the point. He knows how to run an offense, and probably one that is pretty successful. Personally, I just don't care for that offense, as it seems to rely on too many moving parts and players for optimal performance while other systems seem to be more resilient to personnel change. I do think Borges and the offense will improve, especially as recruiting continues to pick up, but I'm probably never going to be happy with him. Of course, that just makes me a fan, so I'm fine with it.
|2 weeks 4 days ago||I figured there would be no shakeup, but man that||
I figured there would be no shakeup, but man that lady game feels like a smokescreen. Maybe the defense will continue to improve and the offense can be competent.
|2 weeks 4 days ago||We saw his best; it was Auburn. It was||
We saw his best; it was Auburn. It was fine.
|2 weeks 4 days ago||To be fair, he's had a couple of years to get the||
To be fair, he's had a couple of years to get the basics down, and 12 games this season. If your basics take that long, you're doing them wrong.
|2 weeks 4 days ago||See, I think there is a||
See, I think there is a difference between people disagreeing with other posters and people just complaining that Brian sucks because he has an opinion. For all the hullabaloo around here about SC most recently and Magnus before, they both post here frequently and don't seem particularly bothered. I enjoy reading most of their posts, even though I tend to see too much "trust the coaches" and deference to the system in my opinion, probably stemming from their own backgrounds. By Brian posting a counter to SC added to a good discussion, and complaints about the board "devolving" strike me more a result of too many idiots being able to get accounts and, as you noted, no way of negging them out of the way.
This place is pretty open to discource, and that is what makes it a great place to visit about UM sports. The other sites have their merits and I enjoy reading many of them (e.g. UM Hoops is fantastic in basketball coverage), but they don't deal in the same traffic and are, frankly, not at the center of the discourse the way this site is. So yes, you might find some better posters or a different world view with fewer trolls, but as they all become more popular those individuals take up a greater portion of the base. And I'll also comp to there being bullys on this site; I'm one of the longer-tenured posters and I have been guilty of brow-beating new people at times. Now, my counter is that sometimes they post dumb stuff, but everyone has to learn and I'm sure I do/have posted crap here and will do so in the future.
But I am tired of people saying the board has fallen apart; I remember 2007 and 2008 being absolutely horrible, and even the negging didn't help. So bring back some more moderation to clean up the gunk, but people taking issue with Borges as an OC in a discussion seems far different than a bunch of people complaining Brian has a different opinion and that he should change it unless he wants to "lose" them as customers.
|2 weeks 4 days ago||I guess "overrated" is a||
I guess "overrated" is a strong word, but when you look at that schedule I see them struggling against the only competent teams they've faced. Yes they won and yes they deserve credit for not losing in two years, but this conference has been pretty horrible the past couple of years and OSU has not exactly run away with it.
|2 weeks 5 days ago||Florida has been atrocious on||
Florida has been atrocious on offense for years given the recruiting talent down there; I'm amazed he lasted this long. Again, I'm not expecting a move at OC this year, but if UM was planning it they would need to move quickly because Florida is going to be in the market at least for a new OC (if not a new coach), and I'm not sure how great the pickings are.
|2 weeks 5 days ago||I think Lewan will get||
I think Lewan will get first-team nod because of the name factor as well as the fact that I'm not sure there has been a particularly standout performance by a tackle this year in the conference. I do agree about Countess and Gallon, and I expect to see Ryan and Taylor also get some love, hopefully on the 2nd team, and maybe Clark on the 3rd team if they look at his progression. Personally, I'd love for Black to get notice because he's a personal favorite of mine all year, but we'll see.
|2 weeks 5 days ago||Great breakdown. I think you||
Great breakdown. I think you are a RS Junior, so expect to see significant playing time next year.
As for the career vs. life thing, I totally agree. People acted like not getting the UFR against Iowa was an act of war; it was a guy who didn't want to write about 5,000 words on how bad that game was. I said it then and I'll say it again; you can only say the same thing in so many different ways, and if you want to read the Iowa UFR just read NW, Nebraska, MSU, etc. You'll get the same vibe.
Good job, as usual.
|2 weeks 5 days ago||Personally, I love Brian's||
Personally, I love Brian's porch...
|2 weeks 5 days ago||That's true. I didn't||
That's true. I didn't realize he was that injured (though he did play on return coverage); given that I guess Furman and Avery get the nod, though I really wish Thomas or someone else could have been shifted again. I'm guessing that just wasn't in the cards.
|2 weeks 5 days ago||Thanks. I'm totally fine||
Thanks. I'm totally fine with the team going to a mediocre bowl game; the worst thing that could happen is they get moved up an opponent because of ratings.
|2 weeks 5 days ago||Thanks for the logical||
Thanks for the logical counterpoints. I'm probably a bit punchy with the tone, but here are my arguments.
1. There were close losses but also close wins against Akron, UConn, and NW, teams with a combined 12-23 record. Saying a season was 7-5 with some close losses versus 7-5 with some close wins is all about perspective. You can't always win the nailbiters, but I think they worked out about how they should.
2. I know that OSU looks good on paper, but it just feels like they aren't as good defensively as those stats dictate. They've played such a weak schedule and won so many close games that it is hard to know if their lofty rankings are due to actual skill or good timing. I mean, the best team they've played all year is probably Wiscy or Iowa, and Wiscy just lost to PSU and Iowa finished a decent 8-4. By comparison, it seems like everyone else in the top 5 has beaten far superior teams more convincingly or at the very least more consistentlty than the Buckeyes. But I'll comp to some prejudice there.
3. Gallon has a weird mix of talents that seem like they'd translate anywhere; he's a legit deep threat given his speed and elusiveness but also is one of the better jump-ball guys in the conference, which is astounding given his height. His skill feels like it transcends a system, and while I won't discredit Borges or his playcalling, much of Gallon's success seems to come from being a great playmaker. And thinking of guys like Tavon Austin, a similarly-sized guy who put up similar numbers last year, I'm not sure the system has as much to do with it. Also, Gallon was recruited by RR, the same guy who made Roy Roundtree into one of the better WRs in the conference as a sophomore simply because of his offensive play style.
As for Schofield, NFLDraftExpress has him in the top 10 of tackles and a decent draft selection, so even if he winds up at Guard it is pretty clear he'll at least get a shot in the NFL. He hasn't had an amazing season or has the name recognition like Lewan, but given the struggles of the line his UFR numbers point to a decent NFL guy.
I recognize that Borges probably gets picked on somewhat here, but I've just not been impressed with his track record anywhere he's gone. He had one good year at Auburn with what amounted to an NFL offense, but he struggled with inferior talent and was gone before the bowl game. His San Diego State team had a good offense but given the talent on that squad (Hillman, Brown, Lindley) I'm not that surprised; you should be able to dominate that level of competion with NFL bodies. My issue with Borges is that his ceiling is a good offense if you give him great players; to me, that isn't worth the hassle of all those years where he doesn't quite have the talent to dominate teams and instead struggles. I'm not saying a particular offense is better than the others, but I have always enjoyed offenses that can take average parts and make them great. With Borges, it feels like he can take B+ and turn it into A material, and that minor jump doesn't feel worth seasons like this in my mind.
|2 weeks 5 days ago||I'm sure they'll have to run||
I'm sure they'll have to run laps. In the offseason. To their cars. If they want to. Maybe.
|2 weeks 6 days ago||Right call. Go for the||
Right call. Go for the win.
|2 weeks 6 days ago||You sound like a real tough,||
You sound like a real tough, smart guy.
|3 weeks 10 hours ago||I would have hated to see a||
I would have hated to see a murder on the field had Morris tried to run this broken-down offense against OSU. At leat Gardner could conceivably get out of the way.
|3 weeks 10 hours ago||Oh yes, because the reason we||
Oh yes, because the reason we keep coming back here for years and post thousands of times is because our local S&M club closed down and we don't have anyone around to kick us in the balls to make us feel "real".
People are down about the season, and then there are people who come in and whip out the faux "rah rah" to be contrarian. Congrats on noticing that fans thought the team was pretty good after 2-0. Small sample size blinded us all to the reality that this team couldn't evolve offensively, and the line simply couldn't block anyone. But to say this team isn't as bad as we all think is faint praise; maybe they'll score 14 points and only give up 32. We should all be ashamed for underestimating the outcome and being gluttons for punishment.
|3 weeks 10 hours ago||I love the optimism, but the||
I love the optimism, but the Horror probably isn't the best rallying cry for tomorrow.
|3 weeks 10 hours ago||Brian certainly doesn't act||
Brian certainly doesn't act like the only annoyed UM fan; he shares sentiments that I think are shared by a large portion of the fanbase. And I think his issue with the spread is that it WAS working for a time here, and the sentiment of the HC and OC to call it a gimmick after trotting out some BS off-tackle crap and one-off passing formations is the height of hypocrisy. I agree that the sentiment can be grating, but this season has been grating, in large part because the guys at the lead of this team keep trotting out "execution" and bow down at the altar of "playmaking" without recognizing the fundamental issues exposed by a wasted season. So no, he isn't grasping at straws or portraying fans as idiots for not supporting his mindset, but he does (rightfully IME) point out the idiocy of people here (and other places) acting like this team is a couple of plays and some grit, determination, and heart away from 10 wins and a bright future.
|3 weeks 10 hours ago||I expect the game to be||
I expect the game to be resonably close early on because, admittedly, OSU hasn't had to play anywhere particularly tough on the road, and the one halfway-tough game on the road (at NW) happened in meh weather. So there's that hope, plus the fact that Miller might just have an off day throwing the ball. But the problem remains taht unless this offense makes a dramatic one-game improvement (which won't happen), all of Borges's tricks may work for about a quarter before OSU counters and then that's it. I do expect OSU will try to run the score up, and maybe that will lead to some late-game closeness as they go for the kill and fail more times than not.
|3 weeks 11 hours ago||That 96 team felt like it was||
That 96 team felt like it was getting pieces together, and I think that OSU team was a bit overrated. This OSU team is also a bit overrated, but UM is demonstrably worse this season than what we've seen in the 90s.
|3 weeks 11 hours ago||The issue Brian and others||
The issue Brian and others have pointed to was the idiocy fans of OSU and UM stating that the spread-type offenses professed by Meyer and RR wouldn't "work" here and were reserved for also-rans like NW and Purdue. Of course, when said offenses played these teams they murdereddeathkilled the Rust Belt teams, and you'll be hard-pressed to find an OSU fan who dislikes Meyer's ability to drop 60 on teams with little effort. Yet around here, people complained that RR's offense wasn't "good enough" because it only scored 24 or 30 points while the defense was being carpet-bombed. So Brian is simply pointing out that, well, the offense does work and that the famed "manball" being run by UM this year is one of the worst in recent memory.
|3 weeks 11 hours ago||Oh yes, because the offense||
Oh yes, because the offense has just been humming along so far.
Sure, maybe UM scores 3 or 7 points. That is clearly a functional difference between 39-0 and 39-7.
|3 weeks 11 hours ago||But...but...we won that||
But...but...we won that game!
/ Said people who only care about W-L
// X's and O's, not Jims and Joes.
/// We gonna die.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Not to pick on your point,||
Not to pick on your point, but I'm still working all week despite my office being closed; I have to get a new product ready by Monday, and that's what the boss wants. But Brian is his own boss, and if he doesn't want to do a UFR he can do that if he so chooses. And as noted below, I always figured most of the content was done day-of, hence the sometimes-late posting when I can only imagine he is still typing up his notes.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Again, you are entitled to do||
Again, you are entitled to do what you want, and as a valued customer I'm sure Brian respects your opinion. But again, take your business somewhere else if this site has really become unbearable. Lord knows I've stopped posting at various sites when they became too preachy; hell, I stopped reading the comments at Patently-O around the time they started complaining about the America Invents Act for the 100th time. And I'm sure Rivals has some value that Brian may not be providing anymore (though $100 for a bunch of rumors and "insider info" seems steep to me), and you are entitled to make that decision. But I've bought all of the HTTV, added in the hockey/basketball one as well, bought some shirts, and have been overcome with beveled guilt before, and if this site turns to crap then I'll stop doing that.
But I'm not going to keep posting veiled threats about leaving in the hope (I guess) that Brian will take notice and stop being himself. These posts are his opinions about UM football, and if he isn't happy then they should reflect that. I'm happy he isn't trying to shine this turd of a second half and act like we are seeing anything great save for a defense coming together. You want a UFR that says the defense played well until it ran out of steam and the offense crapped the bed AGAIN, then re-read MSU/Nebraska/almost NW and just imagine black and gold uniforms. It's the same thing.
I wish everyone a happy holiday, and maybe a day or two off will be good for everyone.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||But in all your examples you||
But in all your examples you paid for something and got back something I return. You never paid for the UFR, and regardless you can go somewhere else and I'm sure Brian will be okay with you exercising your rights.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Write your own post if you||
Write your own post if you care so much.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Oh lord, don't leave us without any oversight! It||
Oh lord, don't leave us without any oversight! It will be insane.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||I don't disagree about the tone, but I like he||
I don't disagree about the tone, but I like he isn't trying to shine this turd too hard.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Oh, he'll do OSU and the bowl game.||
Oh, he'll do OSU and the bowl game.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Well, good luck finding a dry cleaner this good||
Well, good luck finding a dry cleaner this good and consistent. For a guy who seems unhappy with this site, you sure so post quite a bit. But anyway, just have a nice couple days off from r reading about the offense
|3 weeks 2 days ago||I read all of the UFRs and keep notes of sold||
I read all of the UFRs and keep notes of sold performances, but my point is that they aren't the reason I come to the site. I'm happy other people like them and I think Brian does a great job with them, but I'm not going to lose sleep over their absence, especially when the general points probably won't change.
But I'm not going to argue too much over this. My only real issue around here remains people complaining about the quality or content on the site. You don't like it, then don't read or visit. I get people being bummed about UFR, but if it is that big a deal to you just go watch the game again.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Happy Chrismanukkah!||
As a halfling, happy whatever denomination you are's winter event!
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Oh yes, because corporate||
Oh yes, because corporate life is full of examples of people persevering and producing top-notch work despite their personal desires not to. Guy wants a vacation; he's allowed to take one. Unlike corporate America, he doesn't get paid when he doesn't put content up.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Everyone is allowed to take a||
Everyone is allowed to take a day off. And honestly, what great insights are we going to get from the UFR that we haven't seen the first 10 games. If he wants to spend his holiday relaxing and not scrambling to get more content up, more power to him. I certainly don't hold my breath for the UFRs every week.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||They'll play their asses off||
They'll play their asses off I'm sure. They'll probably still lose, perhaps by quite a bit, because OSU is a better football team with a better system, better playcalling, and overall just a better outfit. Even if UM pulls the massive upset (and you better believe a 7-4 team stumbling down the stretch beating an undefeated team would be one of the biggest upsets of the year), it won't change the fact that this season has been well below expectations for most and, at the very least, not inspiring about the direction of the team going forward.
But no, keep believing that a guy tired of watching crappy football is acting like the world is ending because he's telling his readership not to expect a column they usually get on Wednesday.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||To be fair, the general mob||
To be fair, the general mob mentality is that Borges isn't a great OC. I agree people are probably reading a bit too deeply into some of his comments (just like I think Brian may have overreacted a bit to the Fickle comment), but the general sentiment that this guy isn't working out has been proven rather consistently for most of the past 2 years.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Yeah, that got to me as well.||
Yeah, that got to me as well. It was 6 points until 1 second left; he didn't run them off the field. He just didn't implode.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||Nobody thought Hoke was||
Nobody thought Hoke was completely hands-off with the offense; he's the head coach fergodsakes. But I highly doubt he has intimate knowledge of the playcalling and really dives deep into it on a weekly basis. That's the bigger point people are making; the defense is Hoke's background and it has steadily improved while the offense has struggled. It is acceptable to question whether or not Hoke should be more involved in that part of the team, but it doesn't sound like he really is beyond the general overview.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||I think what got people was||
I think what got people was that the two plays were similar enough (and unique) compared to the rest of the offensive playcalling that it was jarring, as if Borges was trying to "shake things up" one drive instead of using these different playcalls throughout the game. Plus, it didn't help the second one was sniffed out almost immediately for a loss.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||We were one of the top 10,||
That "somewhere" is currently playing on the Jags.
The issue I have with this offense remains its disjointedness; I rather the team live or die with a couple of plays versus the flavor of the week tackle-over, pop-passes, speed options from the pistol, etc. that we've seen brought out with minimal practice or setup. I think Denard helped to cover up many of these deficiencies the past couple of years because he could flat-out beat guys to the corner or run past tackles in a way that Devin can somewhat do but not necessarily to the same degree. The line has struggled and some of that is player development and some is the constant shifting inside, but the fact that this team can't run a single play to get them 4 yards consistently is what is killing them, and much of that seems to come from the fact they are unable/unwilling to identify the plays that give them the best chance at that consistency.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||I know the author is a||
I know the author is a semi-frequent poster in these parts, so I'm not trying to hate. That said, it was a pretty meh article that follows the Buzzfeed style of lots of pictures with little in the way of actual discussion. UM and OSU are similar in that they are football factories with large fanbases and colorful histories. OSU, though, has been consistently better the past dozen or so years though with the stigma of "SEC-North". UM has been largely scuffling, trying to maintain a connection to an unsustainable model that peaked in the 1980's and seems incredibly outdated now.
And as others have noted, OSU is a good state school with strong research avenues; UM is a near-elite academic institution.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||I don't much care either way, but if you don't||
I don't much care either way, but if you don't want season tickets then feel free to not renew. But then don't bitch in five years when you want back in and you are blocked in a queue. But yeah, if you don't want to spend thousands of dollars more power to you.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||I may be off, but I believe||
I may be off, but I believe Gardner has another year. It isn't going to be great, but we don't walk right into Morris next year.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Yeah, I hate to agree but||
Yeah, I hate to agree but this is scary when you put it on paper. The offensive talent recruiting is obviously on the uptick given Green and Smith from last year as well as the kids coming in 2014, but the fact this team is basically Morris and bust after next year is pretty scary.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||I highly doubt any recruit||
I highly doubt any recruit cares what 40-50 posters on a blog think about the coach. He could go to Alabama and there would be some idiots on a message board calling for Saban to be fired for some reason.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||But spread isn't just the||
But spread isn't just the playcalling - it's tempo, it's about exploiting weaknesses at key positions, its about running a small number of plays out the same formations but doing so with subtle wrinkles that allow you to surprise the defense.
Yes, OSU runs a certain type of spread with Hyde that they didn't run as much last year. And next year, when Hyde is gone, they'll probably run a slightly different one as well. The difference compared to UM is that Borges is basically trying to run the same offense he's tried for 3 years with very limited success. There are very few constraints, adaptations, really any logic beyond "I'm doing what I'm doing." in the playcalling, and that is infuriating. I agree people use "spread" as a buzzword, but the OP also acted like the offense NW runs is the defintion of the word.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||This offense is bad by||
This offense is bad by comparison; RR's defenses were bad in totality. I mean, this offense can't run the ball worth a damn without some wonkiness, but those RR defenses were tire fires to the nth degree.
And by the way, you may not like the blog but that is probably because this team isn't playing well and there are only so many ways to not freak out about a team going 1-6 to close out the season.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Yes, but the product on the||
Yes, but the product on the field (should) have a direct result on how much those tickets cost. In the free market we are told exists for competitive sports, the weak should not be rewarded with money and fame. Yet here, the team is going to win fewer games than it did the year before for the 3rd straight season and I don't see the cost going down.
But anyway, I think we are largely in agreement about the fact that how much I pay for tickets isn't mandated by Hoke and that really isn't his problem.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||With RR? Pretty good. Hence||
With RR? Pretty good. Hence one of the best offensive seasons in UM history with a first-year starter at QB and a mediocre team around him. With Borges being a stubborn ass? A still-top notch offense his first year, with diminishing returns the more Borges tried to constrain Denard and his best abilities. And BTW, with Denard at QB the team won 11 games, the most since 2006 (and really one of the better seasons on paper in over a decade).
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Brian said the team is||
Brian said the team is struggling and the inner viewpoint of the AD and the leadership is not viewing the issue in the right context. I fail to see how that gets you banned, and I've seen lots of bannings around these parts.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||He said "Michigan", not "the||
He said "Michigan", not "the team." "Michigan" (I presume in this context) is an institution comprised of the athletic department, staff, and, yes, the team in the sense of a football-playing unit on a field, not necessarily the players. But even if we aren't going to argue about parsed language, I have to imagine you see the general point that Michigan Football is not healthy and the guys at the top are seemingly blind to that reality as they talk about "effort" and "fickleness" and "brand."
And if you honestly think Brian is being sarcastic in any way here, I'm not sure what to tell you. He's pretty pissed, and he's making it pretty clear. Yes, he isn't calling Brady Hoke and the football team a bunch of bad names because, I don't know, it makes you sound like a bit of a hothead. You want people to swear and throw shit around? There are multiple threads here and other places where you'll find people wish death and destruction on others. This particular post ain't the place.
And yes, Brian's advertising rates are typically mandated by the provider of said ads; this site gets decent traffic but I kind of doubt he goes to AppNexus or whoever and demands they pay him a certain amount. If his traffic drops, they pay him less. That is "true" dynamic pricing; what Brandon and co. do is monoply-ish covered up with some marketing slogans.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||I don't disagree with your||
I don't disagree with your general argument because, yes, Brady Hoke doesn't set the ticket prices directly. But let's not ignore the fact his staff gets paid millions of dollars, said millions coming from the increased cost of attending the games he is supposed to coach competently at. I mean, the CEO of a company isn't always directly responsible for the pricing of his product, but his salary (and other benefits) typically are tied to the quality and price of those products in the marketplace.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||If Borges actually said that||
If Borges actually said that (and I need to see the full context), then I hope he enjoys coaching a high school team in Minot, ND, because I don't want that blind walrus humping his way through another season in the OC box.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Or, you know, OSU, Oregon,||
Or, you know, OSU, Oregon, Baylor, Oklahoma St., etc. Yes, Alabama doesn't run it and Stanford seems to be okay just plowing over guys, but don't start crapping on an offensive philosophy that wins you a hell of a lot more games than whatever crap Borges runs.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||You know, he's talking about||
You know, he's talking about the program in general, not the kids. I mean, he's the guy who posted a pretty massice dismissal of anyone calling out individual players, has never openly attacked the players on the team, and has made it clear that his issues reside on the administration and their general disregard for the fans as an entity. But no, please keep acting as if Brian is taking shots at the players, as it totally fits your misguided narrative.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||I totally agree with the||
I totally agree with the general sentiment here, but I think the reason we are seeing fewer sellouts and less fan appreciation isn't so much the product on the field as the general uptick in choices/"sophistication" of the fans. I mean, Alabama is the defending MNC and one of the most dominant teams in recent memory, yet they still have decent no-shows against mediocre opponents. They have this issue because people aren't stuck with 2 movies, 3 tv stations, and a couple of stations on the radio dial; I have 14 HBO channels, and I got the starter package! People have TV, internet, video games, streaming movies, Pintrest boards, LOLCatz, whatever to keep them occupied, so watching a boring blowout in 30-degree weather isn't anyone's idea of a good time.
And let's be honest - UM is nothing more than a middling B1G team in this game, and so if you are OSU and you are two games and a DA in Florida away from an MNC shot, why wouldn't you jump in your IROC and head north to storm a hated rival's stadium? Heck, you'll be able to watch the blowout, grab some nice food, maybe stop at Cabella's on the way home, and still have time to masturbate in a public library. Hoke has lots of problems and they start with the same prehistoric views of the offense that led him to retain Borges despite ample evidence it wasn't working out, but I guess "fickle" is just a nice way of saying "unwilling to watch an ass whooping." He's telling the truth to an extent, and some of that is on him and some of that is just the reality of the sport landscape in general.
The pricing doesn't help, though I do think much of that is an NCAA issue, not just UM. And to be frank, MSU is going to lose maybe 3 games all year and they can't fill half that stadium most games, UM at least has the fanbase that will support the cost. And while "dynamic pricing" sounds great, name we one semi-popular service that truly saves people money in this way. People like money, and as long as you are willing to hand it over they aren't going to turn it down even if they might dress up the name.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||I want nothing to do with Les||
I want nothing to do with Les Miles. He works in the SEC, but that stink is hard to get off.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||I'm a bit amazed the response||
I'm a bit amazed the response wasn't more muted. It has been a pretty tough road.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||But like Florida, the talent||
But like Florida, the talent is there. I wouldn't be surprised to see UM and UF take a step up next year, but I agree that 5-7 isn't that far off. I mean, UM's two conference wins are IU and (somewhat inexplicably) Minny.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||It may be the bigger "leap"||
It may be the bigger "leap" because it has been so horrible the past 2 months, but I'm not banking on substantive changes in the offense without a significant change in focus and (perhaps) personnel at the top. The defense is good enough to win 10 games; the offense is bad enough that 8 wins might be a stretch.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||Yeah, the time management||
Yeah, the time management didn't annoy me nearly as much as the wasting of downs, but I do think it goes to the greater issue of an incoherent offense. I'd rather UM have scored quickly, liekly with a TD, and then hope they could stop Iowa's offense trying to throw in that wind. But playing for a tie that late in the game, with said weather, seemed to be the goal and that scared me.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||Meh, S&C isn't the issue;||
Meh, S&C isn't the issue; it's having a bunch of young kids on the offensive line. I bought into the Barwis argument as much as anyone, but teams that play well and are "tough" usually do so because they have really old players on the field. Wisconsin doesn't have some magic elixir that makes them tough; they have 22-year-olds at many positions and those guys are able to push around smaller, younger kids more times than not.
UM will be fine from a strength and conditioning position; they just need to get older.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||I don't really care about the||
I don't really care about the OSU score because I don't think the talent gap is as wide as people think. OSU's offensive line isn't particularly great, but with Miller and Hyde in the backfield is doesn't have to be. And while OSU's defensive line is terrifying, I'd take UM's secondary over their's any day.
As for the defense, I think people get too worked up over the late-game losses. PSU was a wonky game where the PSU offense was given a number of short fields and, really, that final drive was insane. The defense still forced PSU to no score twice in OT, which should have been enough to win. Against IU they struggled, but in the end they forced two INTs and UM still won comfortably. Nebraska they held a pretty potent offense down until the last drive, but the offense did absolutely nothing to help them out and the defense still forced two TOs and limited a Nebraska team that scored 28 against MSU to only 17, which was below their seasona average. And against Iowa, yes they struggled a bit in the second half when half their LB core went out, but they forced 5 TOs and scored a defensive TD as well. They did enough to win that game, and any semi-competent offense puts up 40 on Iowa and nobody cares.
The have yet to see a competent argument that this defense has cost UM a game, only squishy "feelings" about it being overrated. It isn't elite yet, but looking at the talent coming back next year and coming in, if you aren't excited about its potential I don't know what to tell you.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||I think Brandon will talk to||
I think Brandon will talk to Hoke and Borges will be discussed, but I'm not sure if Brandon will be motivated/able to push Hoke to make such a dramatic change especially since it would be a pretty early black mark on Brandon's tenure as well. I mean, he's a CEO-type and a former player, but he's also seemingly as concerned about his legacy as anyone, and admitting that his first big hire screwed the pooch with his OC may not be something he wants to do.
And to be fair, I'm not sure there is an OC out there that UM can expect to get. I think Al Borges is an extremely mediocre OC at this point in his career, but I'm also not sure who is available and willing to go to UM. I'm sure there is someone better, but you also don't want to be stuck with the wrong options.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||At this point, a thread about||
At this point, a thread about cats would devolve into a flame war. Personally, I'm happy that he's still being successful and proving to people that maybe UM just screwed up.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||Fake Screens! Tackle Over!||
Fake Screens! Tackle Over! Magic! Al Borges the Magician is unstoppable!
|3 weeks 6 days ago||I think it is a combo. But||
I think it is a combo. But while Hoke and co like to trot out young players, if there was anyone other than walk ons between Gardner and Morris he would have sat. Again, it is a minor issue, but would provide a more viable option than wasting a year of Morris on a couple of snaps here and there, usually in an emergency situation where another warm body would have sufficed.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||(No subject)||
|3 weeks 6 days ago||Oh gawd, what do you people||
Oh gawd, what do you people want? Him to say "Fuck Al Borges and I suck?" Would that stupid, childish response make you happy? How about he scream at a bunch of people and throw things? That sounds great for youtube, except then he has to go back and try to coach a bunch of kids he just publicly lambasted?
Hoke isn't a great coach, but judging him based on his press conferences after tough losses is the dumbest thing in the world.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||None of thsoe 80s and 90s||
None of thsoe 80s and 90s defense played with anything resembling this offense. And all of this revisionist history BS about teams drives me crazy; looking back 20+ years is almost looking at a different species of football than the one played now. Those defenses would have been shreded virtually any spread attack, and as a by-product of moving toward defending those types of offenses the defenses have had to become smaller and "softer" in some cases.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||Are you talking about the||
Are you talking about the offense? Because if you are talking about the defense, GTFO.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||They forced 40 TOs and got no||
They forced 40 TOs and got no support from the offense the entire second half. Stop acting like they cost UM the game.
|4 weeks 11 hours ago||Bring on the giants. We'll Hobbit||
Bring on the giants. We'll Hobbit them!
|4 weeks 1 day ago||Glad that people are starting||
Glad that people are starting to notice Black even more. He is definitely undersized, but on another team I could see him being purely a pass-rushing floater and terrorizing teams that forget about him.
Thought the defense played pretty well, and it was nice to see them adjust so quickly to what the offense was doing. I refrain from making any more comments about other units on this team and whether or not they have displayed this same ability.
|4 weeks 1 day ago||Are you offering your||
Are you offering your services?
|4 weeks 1 day ago||Yeah, I actually thought||
Yeah, I actually thought Akron would have this type of season under Bowden: start off slow, then pick some teams off as the season progressed. But then UConn happened and kind of invalidated any positive I could take from the close call against the Zips.
|4 weeks 1 day ago||It will be interesting to see||
It will be interesting to see how this shakes out; while I obviously feel for the victim, I've seen enough of these cases to reserve judgment until the end.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||If you think Kinsler is meh||
If you think Kinsler is meh now, I'd love for you to see Prince at the end of his contract. And to me, 25 HRs/100 RBIs from a $20mil/year player isn't too great either.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||The problem is that due to||
The problem is that due to NCAA regulations, they'd have to eliminate some other coach (likely the ST) to open up a space for a dedicated QB coach. I guess you could try to double up at RB or something, but that seems like a tough situation given the RB coach is usually a major recruiting force first, a "coach" second. I mean, Fred Jackson is a fun guy to listen to but I don't think he's done much more than talk the past half-dozen years.
It's a tough situation, one that I imagine won't be remedied without a switch at OC. Since that doesn't seem likely, I guess the only hope is to keep sending the QBs to off-season camps and hope they don't forget what they learned there, because Borges seems to have a pretty spot record as a molder of QBs.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||The last part is the crux of||
The last part is the crux of the argument against Borges, and one you stated succinctly. Over the past three years, the team has struggled to develop a QB or RB (and maybe at the WR position, though I'm not sure anyone other than Funchess has possessed the type of talent and youth to really qualify for growth. First Denard and now Devin have played worse as their careers have progressed, and whether that is regression or poor coaching almost doesn't matter because the end result is an inferior product at a key position. The team is consistently one of the top INT teams in the country (25th this year, but 17th last year and 10th the year before), and the only reason this year has taken a bit of a downturn is because the team isn't throwing much downfield the past couple of games (the TD:INT ratio has been pretty consistent-ly bad).
|4 weeks 2 days ago||To be fair, the better record||
To be fair, the better record this year is because of the defense playing significantly better than anything RR had. That is probably partially due to his own weaknesses as a HC, but Mattison has protected this offensive ineptitude to a good degree.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||I think this argument is a||
I think this argument is a bit weak. Hoke and Borges tried to install their offense and found that it didn't work, so they kept falling back on (mostly) Denard and ran the fusion offense in spurts. Had they installed the offense in the first place, it still would have cratered. The defense has been this team's saving grace during Hoke's time, and that probably won't change going forward.
If the presumption is that it will take another 2 years to fully implement their offense, then that means they've spent 5 years to get to that point, and along the way have fielded some pretty inconsistent offenses. And despite the presumptions about fit and players, this team has had an AA tackle for that entire time, another tackle who'll play in the NFL for years, a Remington winner, and a couple of other guys who range from above-average to adequate. The backs and WRs have not been optimal but are certainly good enough to run a reasonable facsimile to the offense Borges claims to want to run. And while Denard certainly wasn't a great option, Devin has shown an ability to throw the ball with force and accuracy that should fit with Borges's offense; if not, then he has painted himself into a very narrow window in which he has to have a top-10 QB every year to be successful.
UM seems to be going the direction of Florida; a really good defense and (at best) inconsistent offenses. Mattison deserves a raise in that case; Borges and Funk deserve a ticket out of town if that continues.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||Interesting discussion||
Interesting discussion points. Gardner had some horrible throws, and there were a couple he just shouldn't have made. At the same time, though, when you have predictable routes and/or 2-man formations there is only so much you can do. I remain amazed that there was no "deep" pass until the end of the game, but at this point I guess the offense just isn't designed for it save max protect or something breaking down in the secondary.
As for Gardner regression, the face remains he's a worse passer than he was last year but the team around him is demonstrably worse as well. The line is not keeping him clean, the RBs can't do anything on the ground, and since there isn't a viable backup he can't run nearly enough to keep teams honest. I remain convinced that Borges is not a particularly good QB coach, and trotting out McNown and Campbell ignores guys like Cox and Paus. And for as good as McNown was in college, he was a mess in the pros and (maybe this is a bit of Ryan Leaf-itis and Joey Harrington-ecular), but QBs around that time from the Pac-10 had a penchant for being dominant in college despite seemingly being pretty average QBs.
Regardless of whether or not Borges comes back (and I'm 99% sure he comes back at least one more year), he needs to find a QB coach/advisor to handle those duties. Denard and Devin are competent QBs in college and looked lost the more they were taught by Borges, and I'm not inclined to give him any more slack on that front.