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|5 days 23 hours ago||That was a treat||
Damn, he was fun to watch in the maize and blue. It's too bad for us selfish fans that we're in a different era -- can you imagine what kind of year we'd have in store if Trey was coming back?
Still, he made the right decision and I expect him to be a very good NBA PG. As the video shows, he doesn't have ideal NBA size and his iso D needs some work, but Trey is too talented, too hard-working, and too mentally tough not to succeed in the league.
My question, for those of you who follow the NBA more closely (my interest in the Association has waned in recent years): What team (of those that might plausibly draft him) is the best landing spot for Trey? I'd hate to see him go to a team that has no decent talent around him.
|5 days 23 hours ago||Consistency is key for him||
As noted above, when he's on, "Good Timmy" is very good indeed. This is the best case scenario for him -- he gets on one of his hot streaks during the pre-draft workouts and plays himself into a first-round spot. The key for his long-term career in the league will be to eliminate those "Bad Timmy" stretches (e.g., his cold shooting during the Kansas-Florida-Syracuse stretch of the tourney run) -- or at least limit their duration and provide enough defense and rebounding to still add value when his shot's not falling.
|3 weeks 2 days ago||This is actually a good situation for Denard||
Yeah, the Jaguars have been a crappy franchise for a while now, mediocre fanbase, etc. But there's a lot to like for Denard in this situation:
1) He gets to play fairly close to home, at least until the Jags' inevitable relocation.
2) The Jags are a team on the rise. Granted, they have almost nowhere to go but up, but hear me out. They have a new GM, Dave Caldwell, who's been a scout and player personnel guy in Indy and Atlanta, where he learned from two of the best GMs in the business, Bill Polian and Tom Dimitroff. Second, they've got a promising new coach in Gus Bradley, who's been coordinating Seattle's excellent D the past few years. And third, they had what on first glance is a solid draft -- they got their franchise LT in Joeckel, a guy who might turn out to be the best safety in this draft (Cyprien), and two dynamic playmakers in Ace Sanders (whose abilities we know very well from the Outback Bowl) and Denard.
3) It not only sounds like the GM is in love with Denard and has had his eye on him for a while -- it also appears the Jags want to play Denard at the position where a lot of people think he has the best chance to succeed in the league -- RB.
4) Another advantage to being on a (currently) crappy team -- Denard will be assured of getting the time he needs to switch to a new position and adjust to pro football. If he had gone to a team with more talent on its roster, he'd be under more pressure to prove his value on the field more immediately or risk losing his roster spot. That will not be a problem with the Jags.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||This ^^^||
Even getting one of these guys would be terrific. It'll be tough to pry Hand away from VT and Bud Foster, but if we don't succeed with him, getting Malik McDowell (#2 strongside DE after Hand per Rivals) would be a nice "consolation" prize.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||Dexter Coakley||
As a Dallas Cowboys fan (alas), I immediately compare all fast, undersized, tackling-machine weakside LBs to Dexter Coakley. He was 5-10 and played around 230 lb. as a pro. Racked up over 600 tackles at Appalachian St., and the Cowboys took him in the third round of the draft. He had 7 consecutive 100+ tackle seasons, and was a three-time Pro Bowler for some truly putrid Cowboys teams in the late '90s-early '00s.
Ross might have a little bit better size if that 6'1" listing is legit, but otherwise he's a very similar player -- great instincts, flys to the ball and lays the wood.
|5 weeks 5 days ago||Is it worth getting into the double/straight-edge shaving thing?||
I've read lots of great things about it -- see here for example ... just not sure I want to commit that much time and effort to shaving, especially since I'm not a morning person.
|5 weeks 5 days ago||Omameh always makes me laugh||
His deadpan delivery is just hilarious.
|5 weeks 5 days ago||Great piece by Rittenberg||
When I read about Taylor's self-awareness and appreciation for being a Michigan Man, or about how the basketball team handled the loss on Monday, or about the way someone like Denard handles his fame on campus ... man, I'm just proud that Michigan athletics gives us so many good kids to cheer for -- young men who try to be the best both on and off the field/court.
As for things Taylor can do to "round out" his Michigan experience... as an alum of the School of Music, I'd humbly suggest he hit up any of the outstanding concerts (almost always free) put on by the various ensembles at the School -- many at Hill Auditorium on Central Campus, so no need to trek to the SoMusic building on North Campus. The annual Collage Concert in January is a great way to see all different types of ensembles and styles of music back-to-back without pause.
|5 weeks 6 days ago||A few thoughts on the first video...||
Based on scant evidence, but fwiw...
* Clark destroys Schofield in the first play for the safety. I'm gonna take this as another hopeful sign that Clark is ready for a breakout year where he puts it all together.
* Good to see Chris Bryant back out there at OG. Looks like Kalis and Braden are your starting guards for now.
* Jake Butt's gonna be an early contributor this year, I think. Chesson and Darboh are showing some real nice flashes at WR too. Fantastic grab by Chesson for the TD on the last play there.
* Nice PBU by Delonte Hollowell against the much bigger Darboh.
* Mattison's gonna have his guys ready to play, as always. The defense will miss Jake Ryan's playmaking skills, no doubt, but boy, do they still look tough and physical and they fly to the ball. Beyer's looking good at the SAM in these clips, too (though some of that's partly b/c it seems our TEs still need a LOT of work on their blocking).
|6 weeks 4 hours ago||That quote's from The Naked Gun|
|6 weeks 5 hours ago||Damn these guys were fun to watch||
Would've been nice to cap things off with the title, and it still hurts to know just how close they came ... but that doesn't change how FUN it was to watch this team play. (Thank heavens we aren't fans of a program like Bo Ryan's Wisconsin, where you have to "cheer" for ugly basketball.)
These young men and their coaches gave us so much joy over the past few months, and for that, I'm thankful and proud.
|6 weeks 1 day ago||Coming so close is what hurts the most||
As you say, losing by 25 would be easier to take -- you know you lost to a better team, end of story. But to come so close, and to know Louisville wasn't really *that* much better than us, that if a few things go differently we win it all... I knew Louisville was capable of putting together quick runs after falling behind -- but when Spike finished his epic scoring fest with that layup that put us up 12 with 4 minutes to go in the first half, I started to think: "Maybe we really are just destined to win this whole thing." You could taste the championship, it was right there... ARGH.
Still, so proud of this team and all the great moments they gave us this year. It was a privilege to watch them play.
|6 weeks 1 day ago||Brian addressed this very comp (Illinois 2005) back in Jan.||
After we beat Illinois in Champaign to ascend to #1, he wrote this:
|6 weeks 1 day ago||This ^^^^^^||
This bothered me too. Seeing Trey sit so long in the first w/2 fouls was annoying but understandable -- Spike was playing out of his mind and I felt like Beilein was just rolling with it, knowing he was giving Trey rest that would help him play a big second half. But Spike getting such an extended run in the second half was a mistake. You could see he was gassed and wasn't used to playing those minutes, especially when he played so balls-to-the-wall in the first half -- at around 11:30 left in the 2nd, he barely grazed the front rim on a 3-pointer and you could see he didn't have the legs for his shot anymore. Then he committed a couple key turnovers down the stretch. I would've liked to see more LeVert in the second half and also give Stauskas a little more run.
|6 weeks 1 day ago||I'm also perplexed by timeouts and substitutions||
Still processing what to think about the refs and how much impact that ultimately had on the outcome (though I do think the crap call against Burke was a huge turning point). But I share your perplexity about some of Coach Beilein's decisions on TOs and substitutions. (And let me stipulate I am a huge Coach B supporter and recognize this program isn't close to where it is today w/out him.)
First, I agree -- why no timeout when Hancock went on his spree? Do something, anything, to stop his flow there and get your act together on defense so he doesn't keep getting those looks. You don't need to conserve first half timeouts! Really perplexing.
And the second half substitution patterns have me scratching my head too. I thought Beilein went WAY too long w/Spike -- after he barely touched the front rim on that one 3-pointer and made some sloppy turnovers, it was obvious the kid was gassed after playing balls to the wall for such a long stretch. I would've liked to see Stauskas get more run (he had hit at least one 3, so his shot was there), and I really think LeVert should have been brought back earlier -- we could've used his length on D and his rebounding during the second half, and maybe given Hardaway some more bench time so Beilein could tell him to stop shooting so many bricks. The only thing I can think of (besides wanting to ride Spike's hot shooting -- though by that point it was obvious he was done) is that maybe Spike was being more responsible in sticking to his defensive assignments that Nik or Caris.
|16 weeks 1 hour ago||No kidding||
Looks like the forgot one important thing in the Crisler renovation -- they should've put 50-volt electric buzzers in all the seats, connected to a switch manned by someone from the AD. They could just flip it whenever there's a suitably big play, in order to get the Metamucil crowd out of their seats.
|16 weeks 3 hours ago||Last 10 years back that up - 5 of 10 made Final Four (see above)||
That, to me, would satisfy me that this team played to its potential -- once you get to the Final Four, anything they do beyond that is gravy. (Remind me I said this when I'm crushed w/despair after they lose in the title game...) Lots of randomness in the tourney, obviously, but this team should make the Elite 8 at minimum if they keep playing as they are now.
|16 weeks 2 days ago||Yes, grudging props to Brandon||
You make good points re: the PDC and renovation of Crisler. Clearly Beilein is the biggest reason Michigan basketball is nationally relevant again, but these factors have helped him finally bring in the talent he needed to make UM a top-ten program again. Brandon gets a lot of grief around these parts (and deservedly so) for stuff like UNIFORMZ and the "wow" experience, so we should be willing to give him credit when he's earned it.
|16 weeks 6 days ago||Hope Denard/scouts don't rule out RB||
I understand why everyone thinks Denard's natural NFL role is at WR/slot (along w/returner, obviously) -- the Randle-El/Cobb comparisons, the idea of getting him the ball in space, etc. But I hope some scouts/team will push Denard to give RB a serious try. Some posters above dismissed this option b/c of Denard's size/build. Now is he a 25-carry/game guy in the NFL? No. But what makes Denard so dangerous with the ball isn't just his track speed -- it's his vision, his cuts, and his patience to set up his blocks & then accelerate through the hole, as well as his toughness. If I'm an NFL team making an investment in DR as a draft pick, I think I get more immediate contributions from him as a 10-touch/game RB along w/returning kicks, instead of having him ride pine for 2-3 years while he tries to learn WR.
This piece from Rotoworld a couple months back made a great case for using Denard as a RB in the NFL:
When I watch Robinson run (and the way Michigan uses him), I can't help but think his best role would be to start out as a returner and as a situational running back. He's listed at just 6'0/197 pounds, but has a thickly built lower body. The Michigan offense has taught him to make the same types of reads NFL runningbacks are taught. He's totaled over 200 carries the last two seasons, and he was the entire foundation of their run game in 2010 - totaling 256 attempts for 1702 yards (6.6 YPC) and 14 touchdowns. He has a tendency to get upright, but he's a tough and patient inside runner who reads and sets his blocks up well, hits cutback lanes with authority, and has the speed to do damage in space.
|16 weeks 6 days ago||So who are the bad matchups for us?||
You make a good point re: the importance of matchups in a single-elimination tourney like March Madness. Now I enjoy following our guys, but confess I don't pay tons of attention to other teams. So my question to those of you who follow college hoops more closely is: who are the bad match-ups for us -- the teams we don't want to see in March? And what qualities make them Michigan's (potential) Kryptonite?
Obviously having an on-ball defender of Craft's caliber to disrupt Burke is a plus. What teams that we might meet past the first weekend of the tourney have a defender of that quality to harass Trey?
Would a team w/a fantastic post scorer (e.g., IU's Zeller?) be our worst nightmare? Something else?
Just want to know who I should be rooting against! :-)
|18 weeks 21 hours ago||Griese, with the Broncos in 2000||
Was the 3rd-string QB win they beat Atlanta in Elway's swan song. [EDIT: Sorry, hadn't refreshed the page in a while, so I didn't see that 2 folks beat me to the punch until after I posted.]
|18 weeks 1 day ago||Yes, more McGary please||
Along with Spike, McGary was the only guy who I never noticed obviously losing his composure at some stage of the game. (And this was the most frustrating thing for me about yesterday -- I expect the freshmen to freak out in their first tough Big Ten road game. But the mental errors and tentative play from guys who should've known what to expect, like Hardaway and Burke, was disheartening.)
It's probably a year too early to expect this, but I think looking for more post scoring from Mitch would do wonders for us in a game like this. When everyone's panicking and forcing stuff on O, what better way to calm things down than to just dump the ball into the post and say, "OK, big guy, get us a bucket or create an open look for our shooters"?
|22 weeks 6 days ago||Is this the best move for Kingsbury long term?||
No question this is a great hire for Texas Tech -- hot-shot rising coordinator, young and charasmatic, popular former player. A+ for them.
As for Kingsbury, I'm not so sure. Yes, it's pretty damn hard to turn down the coaching job at your alma mater, especially when you haven't yet been a head coach. At some point, you've got to earn your head-coaching bones - and what better place to do that, than a school where you're already beloved, you know the recruiting base, and the AD and alums will give you a long leash to succeed?
That said ... if Kingsbury had stayed at A&M and guided their offense to another year or two like this one (a good assumption w/Manziel), a lot of schools with "destination" head-coaching jobs, better national exposure, and higher ceilings than T. Tech would've been backing up their money trucks at Kingsbury's door to make him their head coach. Then again, if he succeeds at Tech the way, say, Rich Rod succeeded at his alma mater, the big schools will still come calling -- and at that point he'll have the head-coaching experience that'll make him more likely to succeed.
Anyway, should be interesting to see how it works out for him.
|22 weeks 6 days ago||This points to the whole problem w/the "Legends" jersey schtick||
"if it is to be given out, this should be the kind of jersey that is given out to a player maybe once every 15-20 years to a truly special, unique, and most importantly, an utterly dominant player that can take over games and win them by himself."
And when such a player comes along, he will have staked his claim to being a "Legend" in the number he's already wearing, which is why he should keep it. Can you imagine if, after his breakout sophomore year, Denard had been given a "Legends" jersey? F--- that. Now #16 at Michigan will always remind people of Denard. It pissed me off to see Kovacs running around the last couple games in #11 -- dude is #32!
|22 weeks 6 days ago||What are the position restrictions for this number?||
I assume that, like the NFL, NCAA football has some restrictions on the positions that particular numbers can be assigned to -- is that correct? If so, we are looking at a limited set of potential players to wear the #98 jersey.
If not ... it would be strange (though kinda cool, I admit) if a skill position player today wore a number like that!
|22 weeks 6 days ago||Questionable decision for Morris, but worked out great for UM||
The rightness of Morris's decision to leave when he did is an interesting debate, and folks have made good points above on both sides. But to me the more interesting thing is how well it's worked out for Michigan. Not having Morris back might have been initially difficult last year -- but there's no doubt Burke is the better all around player, and this year's team is much better positioned having Burke with a year of starting experience already, than it would be in the alternative scenario (where he's a new starter after serving as Morris's understudy last year). So while I always like guys to stay in school, I guess I'm thankful Darius left when he did.
|22 weeks 6 days ago||Does this ever actually happen?||
I ask not to troll but in all seriousness (don't follow the NBA as much as I used to). Are there any recent examples of young NBA players getting released, going to Europe and developing their game, and getting picked up again by an NBA team?
|24 weeks 1 day ago||You're joking, right?||
Either Manziel or Te'o are going to win, and you can't say those two guys haven't "stood out." I loathe Notre Dame football, but Te'o is the linchpin of one of the most dominant defenses we've seen in a while -- guy's a *linebacker* and is second in the country in interceptions (thanks partly to, um, Denard).
But Manziel has stood out even more, and that's why he should win. Let me give you season stat lines from two recent college QBs:
Player #1 -- Passing:
Player #2 - passing:
Player #1: 4327 total yards, 50 TDs
Player #2 -- 4600 total yards, 43 TDs
Player #1 took his team into Tuscaloosa in November and beat Saban's minions, 28-27
Player #2 took his team into Tuscaloosa in November and beat Saban's minions, 29-24
#1 is Cam Newton, #2 is Johnny Football. Manziel's stats are comparable, in some cases better, and against similarly tough competition. And if you watched the A&M-Alabama game, you know he's the reason A&M won that game. I'd hardly call that "underwhelming."
|24 weeks 4 days ago||Scared of no one, but yes, A&M's a bad matchup for us||
As a Michigan grad from a family full of Aggies, I offered my two cents on this matchup in an earlier thread here. Cliff's Notes version -- this matchup sucks for us, for the reasons listed in the two recent posts above. We all know about Johnny Football now, but their depth and talent at wide receiver w/Swope, Nwachukwu, 6-5 freshman Mike Evans, et al. would severely test our secondary. Malena and Michael are a solid RB duo. Their O-line is almost as good as Alabama's. And their Oregon-style tempo would pose a huge challenge -- Klingsbury does a great job; they don't even use a playbook on offense. Their defense is pretty good too (28th in scoring D, despite so many possessions).
Just watch the first quarter of A&M vs. Alabama. They drove and scored on Saban/Kirby Smart's defense at will. Alabama made some good adjustments later on, but A&M was still able to move the ball and hit big plays and score when they needed to in the 2nd half to ice the game.
I think it could be a competitive game, especially giving Mattison a month to prepare the D. But I could also see a scenario in which Manziel & Co. light us up, and our inability to run the ball consistently and keep their O off the field would cost us over 4 quarters. Any SEC team will be a challenge for us, given our current lack of depth and athleticism, but this in particular is a bad matchup for us.
|24 weeks 5 days ago||School of Music would depend on which program||
School of Music grad here. This is a great selling point for Michigan w/McQuay (along w/Mattison telling him he's "gonna be the next Ed Reed") , because the U-M School of Music is one of the few at a big state school (Indiana U. is the other) that is considered equal in quality & alumni success to conservatories like Julliard, Eastman, etc. USC's music school is pretty good too, but not quite in the same league. (Although the proximity to L.A. is appealing for certain types of music careers.)
That said, I have no idea how it might work for a School of Music major to play varsity sports. The daily North-to-South campus trek would present an issue -- although presumably we've had engineering majors on the football team who've done it. (And School of Music students who play in the marching band make the trek down every day for those practices.)
A lot would depend on what academic program McQuay's interested in. I don't see how a music performance major (which I was) could ever do varsity sports; when you are not in a music theory/history or liberal arts class, you are playing your instrument -- either in ensembles or by yourself in a practice room -- for hours and hours a day. That's how it has to be if you want to be good enough to make a living someday.
But it sounds like McQuay is more interested in being a producer/audio guy, so he might be looking at the Performing Arts Technology program. I have no idea when the classes and labs meet, but the time and academic commitments are probably heavier than what Jack Kennedy and Joe Reynolds are doing (mixing tunes on the side of their LSA majors). But theoretically, it's more doable than if McQuay was a performance major.