and... i like them? I think I like them.
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- Max Beilfeldt 6'7" 245 lbs. Maybe, if his skillset suddenly blooms into something not heretofore seen. Max has the size, but is probably relegated to a backup role for the remaining 2 years of his M career.
- Mark Donnal 6'9" 230 lbs. A redshirt frosh with tons of upside potential but has nowhere near Brandon's rebounding experience. After Mark gets a year of experience of his own and gets the benefit of Jon Sanderson, he could be a force under the boards.
- Ricky Doyle 6'9" 230 lbs. Tall enough, but as an incoming frosh really no competition for Brandon. Again, in another year or two and another 20 pounds, look out.
- DJ Wilson 6'8" 200 lbs. Again tall enough, but so thin that Brandon would just brush him aside. DJ needs weight training at the intensive-care level.
- Two redshirt seniors who’ll play their final game for M on Saturday
- No seniors
- No redshirt juniors on scholarship (Burzynski might get one, who knows?)
- No juniors
- Three redshirt sophomores, one of whom started the season at two different positions (Glasgow), one who started and was later benched (Miller), and one (Bryant) who started a couple games (MN and PSU) before his relegation to the bench.
- No sophomores
- Four redshirt freshmen: Bars (who did not see the field as an offensive lineman this season), Braden (got into the CMU and Ohio games), Kalis (started at guard for the first 6 games, was a backup for four games, came back as a starter for the final two games), and Magnuson (started IU, MSU, NE, NU at one guard position, then moved to the other guard position when Kalis was reinstated as the other starting guard).
- Six true freshmen, only one of whom, Bosch, saw the field in 2013 as a starter or a sub from the IU game on). The remainder—Dawson, Fox, Kugler, Samuelson, and Tuley-Tillman—all redshirted.
|8 hours 4 min ago||Who's gonna bump and grind with Brandon?||
Although many here have denigrated Brandon Dawson's overall abilities, few have suggested he can't box out and rebound. My question:
Absent Mitch, who on M's current roster --- including incoming recruits --- is capable of contesting Brandon under the boards? The candidates are
So Brandon returns to Staee, Kaminsky returns to UW, and probably a couple of those trees at Iowa will be back. Thus if Mitch goes, M will have its rebounding chores cut out for it in 2014-2015.
|1 day 9 hours ago||Critcal Need||
Whether Mitch goes or stays, John B. really needs to recruit a tall wide body, a la Julius Randle or Brandon Dawson. As several here have pointed out, relying on shooters who can hit from beyond the arc is fine, but M struggled throughout the tournament (let alone against Sparty in the BIG title game) from a lack of a true inside, rebounding presence. J-Mo did his best and we're all grateful to him for that, but he couldn't handle Randle (!) by himself. Mitch would have had his hands full as well if just he and Randle were under the offensive glass. GRIII (I guess we now speak of him in the past tense) at 6'6" or so could never rebound like Randle at 6'9".
I know we have (or we've had) Mitch, but he's one guy. Has John B. tried to recruit another such player or two or has he focused pretty much exclusively on finesse shooters such as Stauskas and Irvin?
|3 days 9 hours ago||Sighs, Looks at Watch||
Yes, M will play on ND"s artificial turf this fall. But really, what ND does or does not do should foreverafter be a matter of complete and total indifference. They won't play M, they're in a totally different conference hookup, and they've become about as relevant to M athletics as, say, Wake Forest. Good riddance.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||Wait'll Next Year!||
By my count, the "J. Ira and Nicki Harris Family Head Football Coach" and his staff enter their fourth season in AA. RR's recruits have pretty much, with the exception of Devin and maybe a couple others --- filtered through the system. Now it's all on Brady. Even if this season proves to be a seven- or eight-win disappointment, I'm still willing to give him a little more time.
What? Yes friends, I compare Brady with Mark D'Antonio (gasp!) who had at least four or five years to mold his recruits to his system, to keep his staff basically intact (especially of course Narduzzi the Michigan nemesis) and build a consistently winning program. I believe Brady, Mattison, and now Nussmeier et al. have recruited and can recruit and mold players to their system and build a top-tier program, but it takes time. You need juniors and seniors on the offensive line, fergod'ssake!
Given the state of the cupboard when Brady took over and the amount time it really takes to field a team that can consistenly win 9-11 (or 12) games a season, I'm willing to stick it out for a while yet, at least until Kalis, Bosch, Bars, Kugler, Dawson, and Manguson (among others) are at the end of their eligibility. Go Blue.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||No Final Four, Maybe Final||
I've already invested too much "tube time" in watching the tournament. I'll be traveling on Saturday anyway, so I won't have a chance --- nor will I care --- much about what the teams do. If the Badgers make it into the finals I'll probably watch, but a Florida/UConn - Kentucky matchup will not be all that attractive.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||When the loss occurred||
Not with Harrison's last-second three, but with KY's domination in the paint. M really had no answer for Julius Randle and company. If Mitch had been there, it would have been a different story, but he wasn't and Morgan/Horford, as well as they played, just couldn 't keep up. Will Beilein ever recruit a Randle/Brandon Dawson type? He might need to, to keep M up there with the other elite programs. But in the meantime,
The run was great fun, but it was just one of those shots. Congratulations, guys, on a great season.
|2 weeks 6 days ago||A Vote for Option B||
An interesting sidelight is that the National Labor Relations Board has no jurisdiction over state institutions. In Michigan, the Michigan Employment Relations Commission would determine the employee status of football players who petitioned for recognition and the right to bargain collectively with M, with MSU, or with any other state college or university.
All the SEC schools are in states where unions are regarded as anathema. State employee unions exist all right, but they have severely truncated, "meet and confer" status that does not require a state employer to bargain to impasse over any mandatory subjects, including salaries and wages or other forms of compensation. Virtually every SEC state is "right-to-work," which means an employee not only doesn't have to join a union to work, he or she doesn't even have to support financially that portion of union activities that directly affect working conditions (a so-called "agency shop"). Chances are that any group of football players who petitioned a state labor relations board in, say, Alabama, for employee status and the right to bargain wouldn't get to first base.
So let's say that NU decides after all to recognize the player's union and negotiates a contract that provides, among other benefits, extra-generous stipends, insurance now and in the future, reduced practice time, and a share of revenues from sales of player's likenesses, as well as a full-ride scholarship in nothing but softball classes. Five-star players about to sign with Nick Satan see this and say "hey, that's a lot better deal than I could get down here," and agree to attend NU instead. NU amasses so many such players that it becomes the nations #1 team, wins the BCS Championship and collects millions from sales of NU athletic gear. Those who want mega-price season tickets at a fabulously renovated Ryan Field have to join a 10-year waiting list. NU has excess millions to spend on non-revenue varsity sports and even adds a few, such as chess and computer gaming. Could it happen?
|2 weeks 6 days ago||Interesting Thread||
Most of you know that the University of Chicago left what was then known as the Western Conference --- more commonly known as "the Big 10" --- immediately after WW II. The conference carried on with nine members for awhile. But Chicago's departure opened the door for STAEE, with strong support from a certain educational institution in Ohio, to enter the conference in 1949 as the newest 10th team.
The University of Chicago has not fielded a football team for almost 70 years. Has that fact in any way diminished Chicago's prestige or ability to attract top-caliber students? US News has it tied with Stanford as the fifth-best national university in the country. In this same list, NU is 12, Michigan is 28.
If universities are in fact compelled to recognize and bargain with football players over the terms and conditions of their employment as so-called student-athletes, some prestigious, private universities might conclude that the burdens of maintaining a football program outweigh the benefits, and either downgrade it or close it down. Of all the universities in the BIG, NU --- as several have already pointed out --- seems the most likely to do exactly that. Its academic prestige, like that of Chicago's, will in no way diminish; it will still attract top-quality students, many of whom won't give a flip if NU has a BCS-level football program or not. If NU now subsidizes the football program with general fund monies, it might suddenly have a few millions it could use to expand its educational mission. There'll be no football coaches to fight with the admissions office to allow entry to kids who otherwise would never set foot on the campus as students. And the students who actually matriculate at NU can play sports if they want to, but on either an intramural level or like the Ivy League, at a lower competitive level than previously: in other words, actual student-athletes.
So, Kain Colter and others, if this decision is affirmed, you might have wanted to be more careful about what you wished for. You might have ended up either greatly downgrading NU football or killing it altogether.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||How many hopes for a billion went a'glimmering . . .||
with the Buckeye's loss to Dayton?
|5 weeks 6 days ago||I remember||
I mentioned on another thread that I was a Crisler season-ticket holder in the early nineties and followed the team quite closely. It was after the OSU game in early '92, I believe, which M lost, that Fisher started all five of the fabulous freshmen. As the Five went on their rampage through the B10 and cultivated their bad-ass image, the opinion circulated --- rightly or wrongly --- that these five players largely coached themselves. Fisher was viewed as a sort of facilitator who offered constructive suggestions, which suggestions the Five sometimes followed and sometimes did not. And that scenario --- if true --- was largely OK in the B10, but clearly not OK when M came up against the Coach Ks and Dean Smiths of the world.
J Beilein would have brought an entirely different mindset to that team which, once the Five understood that he actually knew more basketball than they did, might have provided the edge needed to win, rather than just play in, two national championships.
|6 weeks 3 hours ago||Stauskas's Big Question||
To me, the question Nick will ask himself this spring/summer is "what's the value-added of another season in AA"?
That's not a question GRIII will ask. Just to watch him play, with his natural abilities, his NBA-ready body, and his high upside, he's a goner. Mitch is a goner as well, even if this summer/fall he spends time in the D-league to get himself back into top form. Easier to do that while collecting a paycheck than staying on campus, hoarding pocket money, and balancing books and hoops.
But Nick will have to decide whether another year of college ball will improve his draft status to the point that it will pay off in terms of signing bonus, salary, and contract guarantees. The upcoming tournaments and of course what the NBA gurus say about where he will go in the draft will have great bearing on how that question's answered.
Back in the day I had the good fortune to have lower-bowl seats in the southwest corner of Crisler during the Fab Five era. I remember watching Chris Weber and saying to my wholly uneducated BB self that Chris played at a higher level than almost everyone else on the court. After two years as a BB player at Michigan he had nothing else to prove and few if any ways in which he could improve as a college player. So he left. Juwan and Jalen followed a year later, as I recall. Wikipedia says Jalen was selected 13th in the first round of the 1994 draft.
I think Nick could also benefit from another year on campus. For one thing, people speak of his defense --- or lack thereof; he could work on that. Anyway, I don't see Nick as a Chris Weber, a GRIII, or the Naismith-winning Trey Burke. I see him more as a Jalen Rose, who clearly benefited from a third year playing college ball.
|6 weeks 1 day ago||Alumnae||
Don't forget feminine plural "alumnae," as in "All three of these women are Michigan alumnae."
|7 weeks 3 days ago||Hey Sparty!||
What's your excuse this time? Adrian really didn't make all that much of a difference, did he?
|9 weeks 1 day ago||Yet another T-shirt||
When do the "Free Stauskas!" T-shirts go on sale?
|9 weeks 6 days ago||Only one piece of this MM drama yet to appear||
That's the Greek chorus --- other Greek drama elements are present: the oedipal mother-son conflict, whether family loyalty trumps other allegiances (to MSU), and so on and on.
Did I not read somewhere that both mom and dad --- especially dad --- wanted MM out of the State of Michigan because dad was afraid MM's (apparently somewhat disreputable) Southfield pals would motor up to EL and hang with him, thus exerting a "bad influence"?
I suspect MM will end up at MSU, but MM and his family feud is one more drama that Michigan does not need at this particular time. Anyway, I did like Lawrence Marshall's comment: "I can't wait to meet him [MM] on the field." Go Blue.
|10 weeks 9 hours ago||Great Day in the Mornin'!||
If I read the UM Web site correctly, J. Peppers signed his LOI at 8:00 this morning.
|10 weeks 1 day ago||Pure speculation, but||
how those OR stats might have changed with M McGary in there.
|10 weeks 1 day ago||What NSD?||
A sad commentary on NSD's non-significance around here. Several of the recruits are already enrolled, M. McDowell appears headed for parts unknown, and M doesn't appear to be within radar range of any other blue-chippers --- to the point that some say M will just bank the scholarship it held for McDowell and concentrate on 2015. But I guess we'll see for sure tomorrow.
So with NSD such a non-issue, we spend our time playing the "What did Hoke know and when did he know it?" game. To all the Woodstein wannabes out there, this is a fascinating example of investigative, in-your-face journalism. To the rest of us, it's just filler until tomorrow's (apparently) anti-climactic LOIs and Wednesday's BB game against the Huskers. Go Blue.
|10 weeks 3 days ago||Great Job||
As a long-time Michigan WSB fan I always enjoy reading your reports about the team. I also enjoy reading about how Carol Hutchins continues to coax such high-level talent away from the West Coast. It's probably true that California, Arizona, etc. boast the best overall quality high school softball in the nation, but these young women Carol recruits could go anywhere. The fact that they choose UM is a great tribute to Carol's program and to the university.
I'm sure this year's pitching staff will be top-notch, but I will always compare them with my all-time favorite UM softball pitcher, Miss "True Grit" herself, Jennie Ritter. Go Blue!
|10 weeks 3 days ago||Related Question||
If a FBS school offers a young man the opportunity to play football in exchange for a full scholarship and that young man accepts by signing a letter of intent, is that process not akin to an employment contract? If the school directs that young man's course of study into, say, general studies, and supervises his study time to maintain his eligibilty in that course of study, is this not requiring that the young man adhere to certain employer-mandated performance standards, much like an employee would have to do? And if the coaching staff tells the young man when he needs to appear for meetings and practice (including, perhaps, suggesting that he participate in unsupervised summer practice) and, for example, even when, how much time, and what type of exercises he needs to do in the weight room, is this not further evidence of supervising and directing job performance?
It'll be interesting to see what the NLRB has to say about all this. I'm not saying that the NU players will gain recognition as a union --- I don't, at least not at this point. But the findings that issue from those proceedings will provide a blueprint for what both parties will need to do in the future to either gain or fend off recognition. Directing players toward and away from certain majors will be an important factor in all this, IMO.
|11 weeks 2 days ago||Ricky Doyle||
Ah yes, Ricky Doyle's a 6-9, 230-lb consensus 4-star from Ft Meyers FL. That should help with down-the-road ball screens and rebounds.
|11 weeks 2 days ago||Max Effort||
Rewatched some of the MSU BB game yesterday and came away impressed by Max Bielfeldt's albeitly limited minutes. He set some screens, grabbed a couple rebounds, and more than made himself useful while JM sat with foul trouble. I hope that in a few upcoming games Max gets more minutes and improves his skills, because M will need him next season.
With JM gone and (I'm betting) McGary not returning, M's front line will look like Horford, Bielfeldt, and redshirt frosh Mark Donnal, which seems a bit thin. I hope JB and staff are scouring the country for another big or two.
|11 weeks 3 days ago||Dawson, McGary, and Payne, oh my!||
In any contact sport, injuries are a common occurence. Coaches just deal with them, shuffling their lineups and providing players down the depth chart with opportunities to show their stuff. Just field the best five, eleven, or whatever number you need and go play.
People who after a loss say "well, if we'da had Boomer or Sledgehead or whoever in there, we woulda won," are routinely and properly dismissed as whiners and excusers, just like those who blame losses on the "bad calls" the officials made, "bad calls" being defined as calls that went against their team.
Such complaints are in the end pure speculation --- nothing more. If M had had Devin at the Wild Wings Bowl, would M have won? Who knows? And to balance the equation, if last night MSU had a healthy Payne and Dawson and M had a healthy McGary, would MSU have won? Again, maybe, maybe not. But it's worth nothing that even with a less-than-fully healthy McGary, M came very close to beating the number 1 team in the country, and MSU still had some plenty good athletes on the floor last night.
Bottom line is both teams fielded the best players they had available and M won. Any other interpretation of the win is stuff and nonsense.
|12 weeks 5 days ago||Alan Hale, Jr.||
Back in the 80s, while on a Canadian fishing trip, I met and spoke at some length with Alan Hale, Jr. He was at the same lodge, filming a fishing segment for Red Fisher's TV show. Red was a well-known sportswriter for the Montreal Star. I told Alan that my children were great fans of Gilligan's Island, which was then in reruns in the Detroit area.
Alan was the nicest guy anyone could hope to meet. He brought us up to date on all the cast members from the show, provided some interesting insights into the show's production, and invited all of us to his then-restaurant in LA.
I read the obit of Russell ("The Professor") Johnson in today's paper. Those of you who remember the show might recall that he could fix or build about anything. He was quoted in the obit as saying about the only thing he apparently couldn't fix was the hole in the S.S. Minnow, which would have allowed the cast to escape from the island. But that idea escaped most of the audience as well, so no harm done.
|12 weeks 6 days ago||Not old so much as happy||
that I'm still around to see the amazing additions to the educational resources on the campuses (I still marvel at what a great facility North Quad is) and to the athletic campus. I was at Michigan Stadium as a Boy Scout usher when the original, brick press box still haunted the stadium's west side. And yes, back then the announcer in condescending tones always gave the Slippery Rock score. I saw Maentz and Kramer play, saw the '69 Ohio v M game, and saw the infamous '73 tie game, among many, many others.
And I'm very happy to see how well the stadium additions have complimented and really completed the old bowl. The architects got the proportions and the exterior exactly right. I was up for the ND and IU games last fall and continue to marvel at what a fantastic venue Michigan Stadium is, and the memories it always evokes for me. Go Blue.
|13 weeks 3 hours ago||I'm sorry,||
but the best part of that UW-IU game last night was when Ben Brust missed the buzzer-beating 3-point shot that would have tied the game. I was at the Kohl Center last February when he made that half-court thing that tied the game against M --- and which game M lost in OT.
Couldn't happen to a nicer guy.
|13 weeks 6 days ago||Difficult translation from German||
As in other countries, many German family names derive from a vocation: "Schmidt" (blacksmith) "Bauer" (farmer) and so on. Although "Nuss" in German does in fact mean "nut," and "Meier" can separately translate as a "manager" or "foreman," some dictionaries translate "Nussmeier" as "dairy farmer," which is probably as good a translation into English as any.
In any event, let's hope coach Nussmeier "milks" maximum effort from his new O-herd. Go Blue!
|14 weeks 2 days ago||Mitch||
First, best of luck to Mitch tomorrow, which I understand is his date with the surgeon --- we're all hoping his surgery is successful.
Second, has Mitch already played his last minute in a Michigan uniform? Surgery rehab will probably last through the remainder of the 2013-2014 season. If the surgery restores him to health, will he want another season at Michigan or will he declare for the NBA?
Mitch is already older than the average college sophomore --- by about 2 years or so. He's shown he can play at the next level. I kinda doubt he will want to spend another year at M before joining the NBA. My guess is that he will conclude that much as he would like to, he will not be able to afford it.
Any other 6'10" dudes on the horizon M can recruit? I suspect the coaching staff is combing the HS circuit now in search of one.
|15 weeks 4 days ago||M's First Play from Scrimmage||
Handoff to Fitz between center and guard? Forget it. Shane will drop back 10 yards and launch a 50-yard bomb to Funchess, who'll be running freely down the sideline. Will it work? Maybe not, but it will give the K-State D something to think about.
Still, this is the O-line's chance to show the Ohio game was no fluke, that they've come together and can block well enough to open some holes for Fitz, Green, and Smith. And I hope for, rather than fully anticipate, a breakout game for De'Veon. Go Blue.
|16 weeks 1 day ago||O-Line Agony||
I know we’ve gone over this and over this, but apparently it’s time to reiterate. M’s offensive line consists of the following scholarship players:
In other words, the coaching staff spent the entire 2013 season trying to find a combination of redshirt sophomores, redshirt freshmen, and even true freshmen who could effectively play the interior line positions. By the last game of the regular season they might have finally figured it out. Green, Touissaint, Smith, ran for 152 net yards against a good defense (okay, Gardner got 33 of those and Funchess 5, but that’s still a lot better than the O-line’s previous efforts).
As we all know, the paucity of upper-class, experienced centers and guards is not this staff’s responsibility. They did the best they could to make lemonade from the lemons they inherited.
Next season will be better, without doubt.