a vitally important recap of all the dumb tweets sent during the Harbaugh coaching search
|2 hours 11 min ago||Didn't I see somewhere that||
Didn't I see somewhere that Michigan was observed spending more time on special teams than that observer had seen from any team, or something like that?
I got the impression that ST was a point of emphasis. Unfortunately, practice reps can't fix mediocre kicking, but I expect execution in all other areas to be solid.
I think the OR category for returner has more to do with having multiple solid but so far not game-breaking talents that are all expected to see action, rather than any worrisome levels of incompetence.
Let's hope guys can kick.
|2 days 23 min ago||Devin produced two of the||
Devin produced two of the best individual game performances in the long, storied history of Michigan football.
Nobody can say that the way his career ended wasn't disappointing, but let's not pretend that he was worthless. I think it is pretty obvious that he suffered considerable from poor coaching.
|3 days 5 hours ago||I've thought about this||
I've thought about this extensively and nearly included a section about it in the article; all three losses in the regular season were so close that it is easy to see better play at QB putting Michigan over the top in all three games.
The problem with "what-if" scenarios like that is that they don't account for other potential changes. And, significantly, they take a "sunnyside up only" view of such scenarios. Yeah, a little more offense against MSU might make the clock irrelevant. The OSU game looks way different without four interceptions. And so on.
But we aren't talking about a loaded team with a weakness at one position; 2001 was in virtually every other way was a rebuilding year for the roster. And Lloyd Carr, regardless of what talent was on the roster, had throughout his career an inclination to get hung with at least one head-scratching loss a year. It is hard for me to believe that it would be any different in 2001, on a team with a mediocre running game, shallow receiving talent, and only an average defense.
And, of course, even an undefeated season would have led to a complete evisceration in the Rose Bowl by a markedly superior Miami team. Don't get me wrong, that's still significantly better than the season that we had, but we're not talking about a possible national title here.
|3 days 7 hours ago||This is a football wonk||
This is a football wonk fansite; Brian considers the ultra-wonky UFR to be the site's calling card, and features like picture pages and whatever Seth's technical analysis column is called this year also provide insite into how the game is played on the field.
In this environment Stitt is a well-known innovator of interest to people who dig that kind of thing. And this article is not just fluff, since it gives several well-described examples of plays that Stitt has improved and how it happened.
You're way off base.
|5 days 9 hours ago||I disagree slightly; I think||
I disagree slightly; I think the criticism in 2001 was accurate, but not appropriate. Yes, he wasn't great. So analysis that diagnosed how was often correct. The problem is that the expectations on him were unfair. The running game was bad, the defense was average, and he only had one reliable receiver. He wasn't supposed to be "the guy."
Now, there are quarterbacks who can succeed with his level of experience and/or supporting cast, but plenty of fine football players that have succeeded in big spots were not so equipped. Just look down US 23--the reasons 2002 OSU had substantially more success than 2001 Michigan wasn't because Craig Krenzel was a demonstrably superior QB, was it?
To me, the coaching staff was unable to consistently produce excellence in all phases from year to year. Some seasons they'd have a great defense, some seasons a great offense, some years a great kicker. But there was no consistency, and those qualities were largely dependent upon whether they had a top-flight athletes with experience in the right place. They could not cope with adverse circumstances or roster situations.
|5 days 12 hours ago||He did throw over the middle||
He did throw over the middle occasionally, but he was often inaccurate. I think it was the '02 Notre Dame game where I remember him basically not coming close to receivers over the middle in the final, failed 2-minute drill. One thing I do not blame coaching for is limiting which throws he made, especially early in his career--poorly thrown balls over the middle are much more likely to be intercepted.
|5 days 12 hours ago||This is a legit issue. I was||
This is a legit issue. I was at the game, in the MSU student section. The last TD was right in front of me. I left disappointed, but I did not know about the clock issue at the time--I just knew that Michigan simply squandered too many possessions with bad offense to win. Because of this, I was slow to anger about the clock gaming, because I believed Michigan hadn't played well enough to win. Of course, back when we won most of the time, I really cared about HOW we looked when we won, and that bled through.
So I considered that issue. The problem is, no matter how ugly Michigan played, they still had a higher score after 60 minutes.
No one cares that Anthony Thomas was rested early with a 20-point lead in 1999 against Illinois, just that. We lost. No MSU fans lament that their 1990 win is less meaningful because there was an uncalled penalty. 2002 OSU fans aren't shaking their hands in angst because we out gained them that year or because Miami really should've won due to that phantom PI. All that matters is the W or the L. Michigan didn't play well in 2001, but there is an L because of a timekeeping error, not because of that play.
|6 days 2 hours ago||The media environment||
The media environment continues to change. One of the reasons Navarre received so much criticism was that the interwebs, talk radio, and national television made his play more accessible and made commenting easier than it had ever been. Steve Smith surely got criticism in his day, but it was in a time when you couldn't even watch all of his games, a time before ESPN highlights and 24-hour sports talk and message boards.
Navarre endured all of that, and did so for a national championship winning coach that received very limited criticism (though it certainly did exist at the time). He was the focus. Certainly Gardner played at a time where the media landscape provided even more potential for criticism, particularly the personalized format of social media, but his coaches were much more embattled. The coaches and the AD were the true focus of fan wrath, and that kept Gardner from even worse treatment.
|6 days 2 hours ago||A bit late to chip in here,||
A bit late to chip in here, but:
I don't think waiting to talk with a spouse about a massive life change job is at all a bad idea. A guy who cares about his family is not somehow less of a man for doing that. Makes sense that Hoke would wait.
Also, as much as we want to look down on DB for everything, is it proper for an athletic department staffer of any kind to furnish privileged academic information to a person who is not under contract? I could see that being a problem. It's possible DB was just being prudently cautious there.
|6 days 5 hours ago||Lets have some fun here. For||
Lets have some fun here. For starters, contra a couple responses, Martin wasn't fishing. He was sailing on his Santa Cruz 70 racing yacht.
But I have no doubt whatsoever that he knew exactly what he was doing when he boarded Stripes that week. He did not want to hire Les Miles. He had to deal with the different pressures in a smooth way. And he did it by vacating the premises.
And he was right. Would Miles have been the right fit here? A man who openly disregards any sort of genuine discipline for players known to be involved in violent altercations? A coach who takes brilliant offensive talent and produces offenses that cannot score (hey, sounds familiar). A coach who thrives in the ultra-corrupt SEC at the head of a program that is as likely to be rife with cheating as any in the country? Two scenarios were available: he came to Michigan, cleaned up to honor Bo, and was exposed as a so-so coach who couldn't win without the rich SEC talent advantages; or, he came to Michigan, continued to flout the rules, and got fired either for protecting a domestic abuser (not cool in places like Ann Arbor) or blatant violation of NCAA rules, whichever event the not-as-compliant-as-the-South local media came across first.
I believe that, based upon what was known at the time, Rodriguez was the best choice for the position. I think Martin's unorthodox and flawed search eventually wound up in the right place. And I believe Martin was, overall, good for Michigan.
|6 days 5 hours ago||I apparently remember the Les||
Edit. Saw wrong response, sorry.
|6 days 6 hours ago||The problem with the 2007||
The problem with the 2007 coaching search is that you don't always have a good selection to pick from. It's like the quarterback class in the NFL draft every year--some years you've got Eli Manning, Phillip Rivers, and Ben Roethlisberger to pick from, and they're all good choices. Other years you're sifting through a putrid new release rack and trying to talk yourself into Blaine Gabbert or Christian Ponder.
In 2007 Michigan was looking at: Greg Schiano, who is the guy that had good stats because he played in a system with a bunch of great athletes; RichRod, the superstar with all of the tools but two bad ACLs; a nobody from a division 2 school with no track record that's the GM's nephew but says he doesn't like you (Jim Harbaugh, who went 4-8 at Stanford and would have been great but who no reasonable person would have pursued at the time); and Les Miles, the guy with the rocket arm and a coke problem whom you're not sure wasn't involved in a shady sexual assault complaint last spring.
There's no way we could have known Harbaugh was the only good choice. Just glad we fixed it this time.
|6 days 6 hours ago||One thing I lament about this||
One thing I lament about this article is that I lacked the time (my schedule is tight for this kind of writing) and the space to go into the specifics of his playing style. And I wish I had, because I think the visual descriptions would have made it a better read. Navarre had a very distinctive physical presence: that wide shuffle in his footwork, that awkward low point release, the slow delivery (it was the length of delivery that resulted in so many deflections, I think--plenty of time for a defender to see the motion and anticipate the ball trajectory). He didn't have a lot of touch on the ball, and his 20-yard throws over the middle were rising darts that originated the entire concept of Tacopants.
Yet he also learned to throw a gorgeous deep ball and when he was on, especially late in his career, he could thread some tight windows. He learned to manage his body. It just took him a couple of years to sand off the rough edges, and thanks to some unfortunate roster issues, it happened on national television.
|6 days 6 hours ago||Only in that (as Hoke said)||
Only in that (as Hoke said) Many of Michigan's goals were still technically achievable, in much the same way that they were achievable for Purdue and Illinois. We all watched what happened against Notre Dame and Utah; the losses to come were inevitable.
|6 days 6 hours ago||Disagree. Martin wasn't||
Disagree. Martin wasn't perfect, but he's not even on the same planet as DB. People still hold some leftover hard feelings from the 2007 coaching search, and that might be where this comes from, but knowing what we now know about it, I believe Martin managed to salvage it pretty well. Of course, RichRod turned out not to work, and Martin erred in not paying assistants properly, but would I go back in time and get Les Miles, knowing what we know?
No. Absolutely not.
|6 days 7 hours ago||The idea of an AD dictating||
The idea of an AD dictating HOW HE COACHES to a coach is so noxious to me that I have trouble agreeing with this, even after the revelation of everything we know. But I have to apply Occam's Razor here and it's pretty clear that SOMETHING made Hoke decide that the only way to coach Michigan was a "certain style." DB is as likely as anything.
That would explain the chaos and the systemic failure that infected a number of experienced and capable coaches and appeared to turn them into complete incompetents. It explains why the offense continued to regress after Borges, allegedly the problem, was fired. And it also explains much of Hoke's decision making, and many of his errors. Of course, the Gibbons situation looks pretty obvious, too.
One might ask, "why are you acting like what you're saying is significant? A lot of this is old news." Because I was a DB supporter for a long time. Argued in his favor here, or at least argued against uncharitable interpretations of his actions. Even after I stopped, I scoffed at ideas like the ones forwarded by Alton.
But the evidence is impossible to ignore. I was wrong.
|6 days 7 hours ago||Not sure whether the Shane||
Not sure whether the Shane decision came from Hoke or from DB, but it seemed that once the decision was made they really wanted to give him a chance to sink or swim. If the injury hadn't happened, he would have gotten a full game to show exactly what he was capable of. It did, as was perhaps anticipated as a possible consequence, make the choice to play DG for the rest of the year a lot clearer.
Either way, the move was a clear admission of the obvious, that the 2014 football season was already toast. Because it was a move based on 2015.
And, while I remain as horrified as all of us were at the time regarding how Shane was handled following his head hit, nobody can deny that 2015 became a lot clearer as a result, in many different ways. Wish it hadn't taken a serious violation of Shane's safety to do it.
|6 days 7 hours ago||This is a bit vague in the||
This is a bit vague in the OP--it sounds like a caller (who could be anyone) said this, and all Bacon said was that he couldn't get into it. If so, that's a pretty flimsy thread to hang a theory on. Which is not to say that it is implausible, just that fourth-hand information like this is pretty corruptible even from reliable sources.
I do put a lot of stock into things Bacon does say. He has enormous credibility within our niche, built upon years of strong reporting and validated through multiple pull-no-punch books that have given close and (so far) uncontradicted glimpses into the deepest recesses of the program. That both proves that he reports good stuff, and provides a natural shield against him engaging in baseless speculation, since there's no way he will blow years of cred to float theories that aren't backed by real facts.
So when Bacon talks, we listen. Interested to get clarification on what he actually said here.
|6 days 21 hours ago||Drove past Utah? Past Salt||
Drove past Utah? Past Salt Lake City? Because Utah is not exactly a flat state.
|6 days 21 hours ago||So it seems that Utah is||
So it seems that Utah is focused and "up" for the game. Oh well. I guess it's too much to ask for a team to casually overlook a season opener against a traditional power with a new coach who has been the celebrity of college football for the last 8 months.
|1 week 1 day ago||They beat Georgia, too, and||
They beat Georgia, too, and came close to taking down FSU in the conference title game. Their QB (I forget his name) is a terrific option QB and they have a lot of good pieces. Seems like a fair starting point.
|1 week 1 day ago||In 2008, not exactly the dark||
In 2008, not exactly the dark ages, Oklahoma was blowing everyone out. Bloodlettings. And they had guys like Demarco Murray in the backfield.
Sam Bradford threw for over 4800 yards.
In 2010, Jim Harbaugh used Andrew Luck less than Lloyd Carr used John Navarre in 2003 with a Doak Walker winner behind him (similar yardage FWIW).
I can understand someone inferring from my somewhat awkwardly worded "under wraps" comment that I was implying a Neolithically reactionary offensive strategy, which is not the case. But it is clear from the stats and results that Harbaugh did not unleash his protege's talent in the aggressive fashion found in programs run by other offense-oriented coaches.
And, to me, the implications of that truth on Michigan's decidedly unimpressive quarterback stable are clear.
|1 week 2 days ago||That's a good question.||
That's a good question. Obviously, I would love a season like that. But let's keep the larger picture in view here. Harbaugh, a solid offensive guy, had at his disposal a player that most believed (correctly) would be taken #1 overall in the NFL Draft. And in a conference known for offensive fireworks, in an age where top QBs routinely break 4000 and even graze 5000 yards, Stanford averaged 258 ypg in the air. Good, yes, but not mind blowing.
I watched them a fair amount that season. Luck, of course, could air it out quite well. But Harbaugh was also perfectly content to pulverize opponents on the ground, and games like the PAC opener against UCLA and a mid-season tryst against Wazzoo saw Luck pass for less than 200 yards each. Watching Stanford to see what Luck was all about involved a lot of waiting for long-yardage situations, since they were quite capable of running between the tackles on every play. Stanford averaged just under 30 passes a game, while running it more than 41 times a game.
With a HOF-level talent at QB. And it wasn't wrong, as evidenced by their record.
Players of that caliber usually command a more centralized role in college offenses. Point being, if Harbaugh was that conservative with a once-in-a-generation talent, we can expect far more reserve with this year's roster.
|1 week 2 days ago||I doubt Harbaugh got much||
I doubt Harbaugh got much production out of his 4-8 Stanford team in 07. And while he had Luck, when his offense was grinding opponents he kept Luck under wraps, limiting production where allowed in the game plan. If he does that with a future HOF QB that he loves, he can do it with a couple of guys he's not sure about.
|1 week 2 days ago||That's a good point about Rudock, hadn't realized it.||
That's a good point about Rudock, hadn't realized it.
|1 week 2 days ago||Crucially, the B1G plays in a||
Crucially, the B1G plays in a large number of those games. Gator, Outback, and Citrus are all available (uh, is Gator still New Years?) and the Rose is still a B1G possibility depending upon the playoff.
|1 week 2 days ago||Yay procrastination fodder1.||
Yay procrastination fodder
|1 week 2 days ago||My family has adopted UMD||
My family has adopted UMD football as our D-2 alternative. They've been good every year we've been here and the games are fun to watch; hard to find games to attend that don't conflict with Michigan games, though.
|1 week 2 days ago||I was sort of in that spot||
I was sort of in that spot for a while, especially in the late 90s and early 00s when I could catch the games on the radio and they were kind of the loveable underdog. I went to a game in '01 with my LSU jersey and Michigan hat and actively cheered in the student section. It was infectious.
|1 week 2 days ago||That's been true of away||
That's been true of away jerseys for years. The classic 80s-90s jersey with the Northwestern stripe had the same idea. This is a throwback to the 70s, of course, but it is also basically the same idea as the one-off Rose Bowl jerseys from the 1/1/93 game that Wheatley put to the sword. Watch the highlights.
|1 week 2 days ago||This is how it was listed||
This is how it was listed earlier this week. So nothing really new here--they have a listing, but they're not stocked yet.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||How do you know this if you||
How do you know this if you haven't watched a single thing in five years?
|3 weeks 5 days ago||I understand why people||
I understand why people resent ESPN, but I don't agree with it. The biggest reason it's resented is because it's the big boy in the block, the "man." People always resent the man. And there are always things worth complaining about, because nothing is ideal. So people find the bad parts of ESPN, hammer them, and ignore any evidence that doesn't agree with them.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||In two days they sold||
In two days they sold everything that they wanted to move. Maybe "fire sale" isn't the term that strikes people as the best option, but it was a pretty thorough selloff.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||This is kind of new territory||
This is kind of new territory for Minnesota, which hasn't been good in a long time and never at TCF. Last time Michigan played there, Gardner's first start at QB, attendance was pitiful, and so was the home team on the field.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||I like this feature. Buying||
I like this feature. Buying second-hand tickets was my life for many years and there was always some excitement to it. The stubhub marketplace is a big change from my early days, but it makes things much easier to track. Of course, costs have gone up--it used to be that $200 could get you into even the hardest ticket games, and often less was sufficient. That's not the case anymore.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||Could be. It's pretty obvious||
Could be. It's pretty obvious some rebuilding is required, and at least one side didn't want to do the same thing over again.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||This is not just this year.||
This is not just this year. The bullpen has been a disaster for years and has never been fixed. Remember, Joe Nathan was supposed to be the closer going into this season. It was insane from the get-go.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||Dude. I'm not as much of a||
Dude. I'm not as much of a Holland-hater as some, but this comment is indefensibly false.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||Just checked on the Avila||
Just checked on the Avila quote. According to Slonskis, it is: "We're confident we can make a strong push to win this year." That's not a vague platitude; that's a repudiation of last week's fire sale, which was an admission of futility.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||Maybe true, though through||
Maybe true, though through recent years much talk has always centered on Mike's desire to see a title before he dies.
|3 weeks 6 days ago||Avila just quoted saying he||
Avila just quoted saying he "believes we can win this year."
|6 weeks 11 hours ago||That 88 team was really,||
That 88 team was really, really good. Two soulcrushing heartbreak losses to ND and Miami, who would finish ranked 1 and 2 in the nation. USC was really good that year, too. One of Bo's best teams.
|7 weeks 4 days ago||I'm sold. I want to see this||
I'm sold. I want to see this game now.
|7 weeks 5 days ago||The wishbone does succeed||
The wishbone does succeed today; it's called the flexbone, and it is run by Paul Johnson at Georgia Tech and a couple of other notable schools. They've modernized the positioning (obviously they don't line up in a "wishbone" anymore) but the concepts are very similar.
The problems you mentioned are all real, but most offenses could be run in the right circumstances. There's a larger issue, though, one particularly significant in programs that expect to win a lot: You can win in less ways with the wishbone. The best offenses in concept are the ones that can succeed in any scenario--regular play, comebacks, running out clock, third-and-long, etc.
As recently as January 1 we saw that a team like Baylor that does some things really well but has weaknesses in other areas is vulnerable when those scenarios become real. And that is not to say that an offense like Baylor's (or 90s Nebraska and so on) is bad. Just that there are scenarios that are very problematic for them. In some years it doesn't matter--in 1995 Nebraska was never even challenged, so their ability to come back from two scores in the fourth quarter was irrelevant. But often it becomes an issue, and the ability to adapt when one thing isn't working can be crucial to even the best offenses.
Frankly, Oregon kind of has this problem, insomuch as their offense has trouble adapting when a dominant defensive front clogs up their base spread run package. Contrast that with how USC adapted in the 1/1/07 Rose Bowl when their running game did nothing and you see the difference.
|7 weeks 5 days ago||Maize is not and never, ever||
Maize is not and never, ever has been an "orange-y yellow." That is patently and objectively false.
|12 weeks 2 days ago||That's the landscape of||
That's the landscape of Soccer in the 21st Century. The best players all play on a small handful of the richest clubs. Real Madrid is actually the worst example of this--since the days of di Stefano and Puskas, they have always hoarded as much of the best talent as they could get. True to this day.
What is remarkable is that even in this environment, the offensive results that Messi and Ronaldo produce every year is staggering. And they are producing in the biggest games, at least for their clubs. Netting 60-70 goals in a season simply isn't done, and yet these two have been doing it for YEARS.
Many all-time greats have played with other all-time greats. It doesn't get results like this. The Messi-Ronaldo rivalry is a golden era of Soccer, one that we will tell our grandkids about. It's a pity that it gets so little attention in the States. This isn't just greatness, it's all-time greatness.
|12 weeks 3 days ago||Same reason that doping is||
Same reason that doping is widespread and effectively overlooked across major sports: the benefit is huge.
Flopping happens in basketball because the challenging nature of the block/charge call means that it can directly benefit the team. Low cost, good upside. Flopping in Soccer probably has a lower success rate, but the cost is still low. And the benefits are huge--penalties or free kicks near goal; further out, yellow or red cards that neutralize or remove opposing players for the entire game. That's a huge benefit. Even if it only works one out of ten times, that one success is worth whatever it takes.
So it will continue.
|12 weeks 6 days ago||I'm with you on this. I||
I'm with you on this. I watched and enjoyed the Super-Regional last year and tuned in again (vaguely familiar with the players) when national TV did. And it's been a lot of fun to watch; this is a very likable team. I have vague hopes that the pizza meme crosses over to a big-time sport next year, say as part of a team TD celebration.
Hope they win tonight.
|13 weeks 1 day ago||That play at the plate,||
That play at the plate, between two teams I don't care about, in a sport I am usually indifferent toward, was electric. Awesome. This is why sports are great.
|13 weeks 3 days ago||You two are arguing about||
You two are arguing about something that you basically, vaguely, agree about.
Tony George was an idiot.
Tony George held the trump card, the Indy 500.
The breakaway had all the best drivers, a great collection of cars, a fantastic format, a brilliant stable of races... But no Indy.
And that mattered. And now the Indycar series is still a thing, but it's much more of a niche. And insomuch as it has success it has success by being basically what the series was before the split. The big event is a huge, huge issue. The best teams needed Indy.
|14 weeks 22 hours ago||I love the way Richard||
I love the way Richard Rothschild concludes his article ( http://www.si.com/more-sports/2010/05/24/owens-recordday ) on the Owens moment:
"Ferry Field still stands. Outside the track a plaque commemorates Owens' record-shattering day. It is, perhaps, the ultimate compliment in college sports that a University of Michigan athletic facility continues to honor the achievements of an Ohio State Buckeye."
Some things are bigger than sports rivalries. What Jesse Owens did in the '36 Olympics, repudiating in symbol and in fact Hitler's Fascist philosophies that took the world six years to militarily defeat, might be the highest possible achievement in sports.
To have such a transcendent athlete achieve one of his greatest accomplishments in the home of his school's greatest arch rival is fitting: to be so great that said arch rival is happily compelled to memorialize that achievement on its campus is appropriate. A proper tribute to his greatness.
May he be long remembered.
|14 weeks 2 days ago||Didn't the tournament do||
Didn't the tournament do pretty well in Nebraska? You know, where there's an established college baseball fanbase.
I wish I had some extra time, because I would actually love to catch a game at Target field this weekend. It's a selling point for me. But then I root for Michigan and don't always have a local MLB team to see whenever I want.
And two hours is a bit too long to drive.
I think the smaller-town idea is pretty good. But honestly I don't think this well draw very well anywhere. Smaller venues at least look respectable.
In fairness, WD, the B1G hockey tournament at least had the reasonably successful CCHA finals to use as a blueprint for holding games at the Joe. There is no similar record of success for college baseball.
|14 weeks 4 days ago||College players who sign||
College players who sign before the end of the NHL regular season almost always get called up to the top level for a game or two, whether they have an NHL future or not. Shawn Hunwick dressed for Columbus and was out of hockey a year later, etc. It's a standard practice that gives young guys a game or two of top seasoning and the organization a chance to learn about them. Teams that are in the playoff hunt can rest guys that they will need later, since the college kids aren't eligible for the playoffs anyway; basement teams have nothing better to do. Been this way for years.
Your logic is flawed. Red was a great coach, had forgotten more about hockey than any of us will ever know, and still doubtlessly knows a lot. But the results are simply beyond dispute; the team isn't winning. Further, talented guys aren't developing, and the locker room has been a problem for several years (we thought we had lost bad apples after last season, and maybe we did, but the loss of Copp, who was a big Red supporter in past seasons, suggests that things are still unpleasant).
This doesn't invalidate Red's contribution to the program, his greatness, or his quality as a person. And nobody is calling for him to be fired; he has earned the right to choose when to retire.
But he's going to retire on a four-year streak of no tournaments. Coaches of top programs who miss that many tourneys in a row aren't doing that well.
|14 weeks 4 days ago||It's not just Larkin; it's||
It's not just Larkin; it's also Andrew Copp, an Ortmeyer-type with a much harder road to NHL success, the local kid who went to Skyline and loves Michigan as much as anyone, also leaving early.
They're not just leaving because they're good enough; it looks to me and others like they're leaving because the Michigan Hockey program isn't that great to be around right now.
Either the program is terrifically talented and has massively underachieved for three years, or it's not as talented as we think. Either way, the results speak for themselves--a program unequalled in its consistent record of success under Red has suddenly become, in a massive conference downswing no less, a mediocre team that can't make the NCAA tournament.
As Brian has said, no program in hockey is more patient than Detroit. They out no pressure on Larkin. He left anyway.
After next season it will be four consecutive years without a Tourney berth. If that's not a rebuilding job for this program, I don't know what is.
|14 weeks 4 days ago||Can't blame the guy. Very||
Can't blame the guy. Very discouraging as a fan. It's clear that Red has lost his fastball; whomever comes in next will have to completely rebuild the program.
Going to be hard to follow hockey next season. At least basketball is good.
|14 weeks 6 days ago||Bad calls can happen in any||
Bad calls can happen in any game in any situation, in any sport. It doesn't need to be a play-in to cost a team dearly, either.
The Braves put themselves in the position of relying on one game by not winning their division. The game itself may be capricious, but they exposed themselves to that by not winning. Their downfall could just as easily come from a bad pitch by a good pitcher, a freak error, or a relief pitcher who just "doesn't have it." That's baseball on any given day. Avoid it. Win your games.
The Giants won it that year BTW. I don't blame you for messing that up, I've tried to forget about that World Series myself.
|14 weeks 6 days ago||Posted before I posted mine,||
Posted before I posted mine, and well put.
|14 weeks 6 days ago||I'm a bit confused--you are||
I'm a bit confused--you are praising a response that says that suggests less randomness would be a good thing, and that it can be achieved by adding teams and going to full 7-game series for all rounds.
I agree with you that there is value in rewarding regular season success with a playoff berth. Too many teams dilute the product, and baseball is one sport where the long regular season really has to mean something.
...Which is why the one-game playoff, while gimmicky and bizarre, works for me. It is reserved for Wild Card teams, which makes a division title a real and valuable achievement. Basically, it's a one-game coin flip that throws off your pitching rotation.
To me, this is superior to the old days of the past decade where the Red Sox and Yankees would both make the playoffs and the games played in the last two months meant nothing. Last year, the A's faced a real consequence for their late-season collapse, and the Tigers earned a real reward (which the bullpen, naturally, gave back) for how they played in the regular season.
The season mattered.
One thing I do agree on: all series should go 7. 5-game series are silly.
|15 weeks 3 days ago||The major question, I guess,||
The major question, I guess, is how aggressive you want to be with a 7 and an 8-year-old. A lot of suggestions anchor around Traverse City, and there's a lot of stuff nearby, but if you play it right you can stay somewhere close to that and still make a manageable day-trip to Mackinac for the sights and experience. My family spent a week at Shanty Creek in Bellaire 20+ years ago and we had a great time: not on top of everything but close to a lot.
|15 weeks 3 days ago||I wasn't quite as limited in||
I wasn't quite as limited in my state travels as you were, but I never saw the Mackinac bridge until after I turned 20, and didn't go to the island until after 30 when my wife and I went.
|15 weeks 3 days ago||Isle Royale is surely a||
Isle Royale is surely a magnificent destination, but it is waaaaay more remote than most of the other ideas here. It can only be accessed by boat, and one must either go to the northern fringes of the UP or swing by me on their way to the Minnesota arrowhead.
|15 weeks 6 days ago||Duluth is home to one of||
Duluth is home to one of those wood-bat Independent Summer League teams and it seems like a nice setup. FWIW they play something like 70 games from late-May to early August, with the bigger-college players joining a few weeks into the season.
|15 weeks 6 days ago||Sad, because he was a likable||
Sad, because he was a likable guy and he was fun to watch.
|15 weeks 6 days ago||Yes. Elite returners need||
Yes. Elite returners need speed to hit holes when they form and punish mistakes. The best returners make at most one cut and rocket upfield to open space, getting through before e holes close. The exceptionally rare moments where a great return happens after a major reversal of field require speed even more, because slower guys get swarmed by backside pursuit.
Norfleet was elusive, but he was not particularly fast. That's why his ceiling was always just "adequate."
|16 weeks 3 days ago||A lot of Stadiums look like||
A lot of Stadiums look like that. Neyland Stadium is totally unimpressive from the outside, for example. It's just functional design at work. I'm really grateful that the Michigan Stadium renovations left the exterior looking sharp; most above-ground stadiums that were raised before the current era of aesthetic expansion look pretty spare.
|16 weeks 3 days ago||I'm going to be||
I'm going to be controversial, but it's in good faith:
The Rose Bowl game is a magnificent event. The setting, of course, is spectacular. The game is peerless. Twilight over the San Gabriel's is amazing (and you should see the sunrises--best I ever saw anywhere was over those mountains on a drive home from work after a double). Everything about the Rose Bowl is great.
But the physical Stadium itself is kind of meh.
The concourses are too narrow, the restrooms too scarce. The seating bowl is pretty, but the elliptical shape puts you further from the field and most of the bowl is shallower than Michigan Stadium. You who have been there know how lousy the parking situation is out there; forget about getting anywhere fast. Everything is in serious need of renovation, but public funding issues make that hard to do.
None of that changes anything about how wonderful the experience of attending a Rose Bowl game is; a summit experience for a sports fan. I got to go to one (2007) and the final result scarcely changes how awesome it was that I got to attend.
But the facility is mediocre. Think of it this way: assuming no spare time to enjoy the city and equal weather, would you rather attend a UCLA home game than a home game for, say, Auburn or Florida or Texas? I wouldn't.
|16 weeks 3 days ago||I'll plus-one this. I really||
I'll plus-one this. I really enjoyed the Glass Bowl, cool place, good places to sit, kinda quirky.
|16 weeks 3 days ago||This is really a question of||
This is really a question of which great place is the most enjoyable, because any number of these great venues are waaaaaaaaaay better than, say, a mediocre sports facility with 20,000 people in it. Live sports are just awesome witness, and college football is the best thing going.
Seriously, if you had the choice of regular season events as a neutral observer (your team isn't involved), would you prefer to watch: 1. A regular season baseball game in Minneapolis with 28,000 people; 2. A regular season NBA game in Charlotte with 18,000 people; 3. A regular season NHL game in Denver with 18,000 people; or, 4. A regular season college football game in Spartan Stadium (as nondescript and mediocre as a college stadium can be) with 75,000?
For me, it's the college game hands-down. It's an event you'll never forget. Even there.
I've been to games in Knoxville, College Station, Lincoln, Pasadena, Columbus, and others. When I say the best place I went was a night game at LSU (hosting Eli Manning's Ole Miss, FWIW) it's a solid preference but it's preferring an A-plus to a bunch of A's and a B-plus or two. All of them are awesome.
I attend and enjoy local UMD D-2 games that draw 2-4000 people. It's great fun. I'd rather do that than a lot of other recreational things. Seeing a game in a huge stadium with superior athletes, a huge band, and a vibrant crowd? There's nothing like it. It's awesome. LSU is slightly more awesome than, say, Nebraska, but it's all still awesome.
|16 weeks 3 days ago||Tailgating is hard to come by||
Tailgating is hard to come by in Minneapolis, which is a topic of some discussion amongst the fanbase. The urban campus affords little space near the stadium to tailgate, and the few nearby parking lots are sold to season pass holders. I believe there is significant fairground parking at the St. Paul campus with shuttle service, but I think that's about it.
I did briefly consider tailgating at a riverside park (name escapes me) on the far side of the Minneapolis campus, walking to the game after, but I haven't done it.
The upside is that dinkytown is not a bad walk from the Stadium, so there's that.
|16 weeks 4 days ago||Actually that team had||
Actually that team had relatively mediocre talent, couldn't run the ball, and wasn't super-talented on defense. We all remember that Marquise Walker was the star receiver, and he had over 80 catches. Do you know who the next two leading receivers were?
You guessed it: BJ Askew with 24 catches... and Bill Seymour with 23.
It is true that Henson would have made a huge difference; despite all of these weaknesses and a quarterback who was forced to play one year too soon, Michigan's losses were flukey and close. The Washington loss that nobody remembers (it happened on September 8, 2001) turned on a blocked field goal returned for a TD, followed immediately by a pick-six that bounced off the hands of a Michigan player (Askew, I think) that wasn't Navarre's fault. Still only lost by 5. The MSU loss was the clock game. The OSU game was a dreadful performance that Michigan still nearly won.
But it is all irrelevant. For one, Michigan always lost at least one game it shouldn't have under Lloyd after the '97 season. For two, even if all three of those games are flipped, Michigan was severely outgunned against Tennessee (which was loaded) and would have been embarrassed by any other seriously contending team it had played that year whether Henson was QBing or not.
Given the situation, I have come to the conclusion that the 2001 Michigan team actually did about as well as it could have given the roster.
The problem with Navarre as a QB is not that he wasn't a great player; it's that he was a fine QB to play Lloyd's preferred defense-first running-game oriented conservative game, but the team could never execute it. Washington, already referenced, was a special teams failure; so were Iowa and especially Oregon in 2003. Navarre was seriously hamstrung by failures in other parts of the team that forced him to play a pass-heavy game that was neither a strength of the offensive coaches nor something well-suited to Navarre.
|16 weeks 4 days ago||Glad you brought this up,||
Glad you brought this up, though your reasoning is suspect.
It's possible that he was "dependable and consistent," but John Kolesar made some of the most incredible, most-clutch catches in Michigan history. I could list three and people could chime in with five more (the three: OSU clincher in '85, OSU winner in '88, and amazing Hall of Fame Bowl winner).
Michigan has a history of great receivers, and many of them are associated with one huge TD catch that won a game at some point. Mario Manningham against Penn State, David Terrell against Wisconsin, Braylon against MSU (ok, so it was three huge TD catches plus the key bomb catch to set up the field goal that set up the onside kick...), Desmond Howard against Notre Dame, Mercury Hayes against Virginia, Roy Roundtree against Notre Dame, etc.
Kolesar has a handful of huge TDs like that.
|16 weeks 4 days ago||Brady got the nod in the||
Brady got the nod in the second half of the MSU game because the offense didn't look great with either guy at the helm, but Henson did nail a long td pass late in the second quarter. Based on Lloyd's criteria of playing whomever was the hotter hand, Henson was a defensible choice.
I don't think Lloyd should have handled it that way, but I highly suspect he wanted to keep Henson as involved as possible to keep from losing him to baseball. And he did get a terrific year out of Henson in 2000, so it was partly successful. Unfortunately, in the '99 MSU game, Brady would have been better suited to win the game, and given the comeback that he almost led (in two years with Brady as a starter Michigan lost five games and Brady managed to rally the team late in each one of them) it's possible they would have won.
The Illinois game was extremely flukey. Michigan was playing a typical conservative Lloyd-ball game and it was working just fine, hence the 20-point lead. Anthony Thomas was playing well but got dinged (groin tweak, maybe? I don't recall) and Lloyd sent him to the locker room. There's no question in my mind that Thomas could have continued to play well, but Lloyd had a huge lead and didn't want to risk further injury, an understandable caution.
Then the wheels came off and Michigan's key RB had already hit the showers. Michigan wins if Thomas doesn't leave the game early, and the killer is that he really didn't have to.
|16 weeks 5 days ago||It sounds like you haven't||
It sounds like you haven't chosen a marina yet, which can be a significant deal--how long it takes just to get out on the water can be a big obstacle. Drive time, prep time on the boat, it all adds up to hours not spent enjoying yourself.
Are you at a point where you can commit to making boating activities a primary recreation outlet in the summer? It's a pretty expensive investment just to have for the occasional Saturday when you feel like getting out on the water, but if you are going to spend portions of at least a day or two every week enjoying it, it can make more sense. But you have to factor in things like travel time and fuel expense there.
There's a couple in our church that has a very modest Bayliner in a Marina that accesses the Apostle Islands, 1.5 hours away. It makes sense for them because they take every Friday off and head out there, coming back Saturday evening, all summer. They bring friends out regularly. It pays off. Most of the boats that dock near them don't get used nearly that much.
|16 weeks 5 days ago||"East Coast" also means "salt||
"East Coast" also means "salt water," which has significant implications to things like motors.
|16 weeks 5 days ago||Cat and dinghy sailing is||
Cat and dinghy sailing is fantastic, you should have a great time. How much needs to be done? Does it have decent sails?
There's some value in doing some research to learn, just to have an idea of what you're doing. The best way to learn is to do, though. As long as you have a clear idea of how to hold course and get upwind, you have a good base to start.
One resource that might actually help is a demo version of Sailing Simulator 5, which will allow you to sail a Laser (those are pretty fun to sail too, though as a large guy I find them uncomfortable to operate) and get a feel for how to handle wind direction.
I'm a big-time sailing convert myself--as a kid I wanted all boats to have motors on them, but I got a hankering to try sailing a couple of years ago and joined a local club. Helps to have Lake Superior and the harbor minutes from my house. My favorite summer activity.
|17 weeks 4 days ago||I'm sure JB was upfront with||
I'm sure JB was upfront with Williams about this. Why not? Michigan is in play for a transformative player and will take him over Williams if he comes. Williams, understandably, is focusing on sure-thing options.
Michigan will be pretty good next year with or without Williams. Brown comes and we're looking at Final Four expectations. Why not shoot for the moon? You lose, we see guys like MAAR grow up. You win, and the program approaches perennial powerhouse territory.
We shot for the moon for Harbaugh. It worked. It was the right move regardless. Beilein is all in on Brown. It might work. But I like the move regardless.
|17 weeks 4 days ago||Yep. Six years now. Fantastic||
Yep. Six years now. Fantastic place.
|17 weeks 4 days ago||My tagline speaks for itself,||
My tagline speaks for itself, but for mobile app readers I am in Duluth.
And I'm not the only Michigan fan who lives here.
|18 weeks 42 min ago||The twin-cities issue also||
The twin-cities issue also matters since you wind up stiffing a big chunk of your market if you pick just one. Minneapolis is kind of the "big brother" of the relationship but the two are inextricable and basically equal. Up here we just refer to them as "the cities," rarely even differentiating. The state name is a smart way of appealing to everyone, which is logical when you have fans all over the state.
Ironically the Detroit teams have always used the city name but are statewide institutions that represent far more than the city. I would guess at least 80% of fans at the Joe, for example, are from outside city limits. They are the "home" teams for cities like Grand Rapids, which is rather large on its own. Only history (and good aesthetics) keeps the identity of "Detroit."
And I'm fine with that. An old English "M" just doesn't look the same on a hat.
|18 weeks 50 min ago||Gary. Basketball will be fine||
Gary. Basketball will be fine regardless; I'd love Brown to come but my expectations are high either way.
Gary would be a huuuuuge recruiting win against the top dogs of football. No way landing him doesn't have a domino effect. He would be the anchor of a program-changing class. The potential gain is way, way bigger.
But let's get both and really have a good year.
|18 weeks 3 days ago||The quickie descriptions of||
The quickie descriptions of the old tourist trap portions of US 12 were nostalgic. I used to enjoy the old Prehistoric Forest and Bear's Lair, which is the go-kart track (also had mini golf and a solid video arcade) referenced in the article. Sad, but unsurprising, to hear that things are fading. Life in the country.
|18 weeks 4 days ago||Soria last year was a good||
Soria last year was a good move that ran into genuinely bad luck, and if he can perform well as the closer this season it will pay off well.
|18 weeks 4 days ago||Needed more in the offseason,||
Needed more in the offseason, though, in my opinion. It's not clear to me that it was ever wise to put faith in Nathan at his age, but after last year's dead arm and lousy performances, it was insane. Now, if he had pitched well this year, that would have been a pleasant and helpful surprise. But you can't wager a crucial season for a team whose window is closing on the good health of a 40-year-old arm.
I am hopeful that Rondon will get well and contribute, but he has never demonstrated that he can stay healthy, either. The Tigers did a great job fortifying the outfield in the offseason, and so far the starting rotation moves look solid, but the season started with three or four big-time questionmarks in a bullpen that has catastrophically failed in multiple previous seasons.
So far, the only positive return has been Soria. He looks decent, though I'm not blown away by his stuff. But there's nobody else on the roster that can consistently get crucial outs.
|18 weeks 4 days ago||Yeah. Before I knew how bad||
Yeah. Before I knew how bad it was, my initial response to the report that he had to shorten his rehab assignment was, "Good news!" More time for Soria to lock down the closing job and all.
But then I read a headline that, paraphrased, said something like "Nathan's injury means the Tigers will have to rely more on Ian Krol."
As a closer I am not high on Nathan at all. But the Tigers need arms that can fill innings, and a healthy Nathan had a chance to do that, possibly as a setup man.
His was a bad signing, and I thought so from the beginning, because of his age. And I don't want him to close. But a season-ending injury is bad for him and bad for the team.
Dombrowski has done much for the Tigers that is very good. But his failure to secure the bullpen has, quite possibly, cost the team a championship. The continued inability to upgrade it is unconscionable.
|18 weeks 6 days ago||Hatch seems sensible, and his||
Hatch seems sensible, and his transition has probably been known for some time. I would expect it's a mutual choice, perhaps even proposed by Hatch--he's going to be spending three more years on the bench either way, why not see better players? He got on the floor.
I wouldn't be shocked to find out that there's a transfer in the works, too, though. We know how clogged playing time is becoming, and I wonder if there is a young guy on the roster who sees the writing on the wall and surprises us by moving. It's pretty common these days, and of course we've seen it happen before.
|19 weeks 4 days ago||Syracuse isn't exactly a||
Syracuse isn't exactly a minor league team, now. Jim Brown went there. Ernie Davis died too soon but he was great. Donovan McNabb is no Marino but he's not a scrub, either. I would say that except for Pitt's title the two programs are roughly equal.
|19 weeks 4 days ago||I might be leaning against||
I might be leaning against the grain here, but when I visited Nebraska I wasn't especially impressed with the friendliness of their fans. Now it is true that they applaud the opponents, and I like that a lot; however, my visit there (Kickoff classic or some analogous game that used to happen the week before the rest of the teams started, August 2002) the fans around me weren't particularly friendly. The ones behind me were downright arrogant, and when I introduced myself they launched into an obnoxious and rather delusional rant about who they felt should have won a unified title after the 1997 season. It wasn't something they actually wanted to be friendly about.
Now it may be that I happened into a bad apple, but it left a bad taste in my mouth.
|19 weeks 4 days ago||Finger wasn't a function||
Finger wasn't a function unique to pine, and was pretty common on the systems of the day. Some message boards still have very similar functions available.
|19 weeks 5 days ago||Ok, I'm late to the party||
Ok, I'm late to the party here.
My view is mixed, but in an odd way: I actually really like the original, pre-move (and immediate post-expansion) Browns unis. I love the blank helmets. I like the all-white look with the brown numerals and white socks with stripes. I thought it all worked. Yeah, a bit plain, but so what? It was sharp to me.
The little modifications over the years always bothered me a bit, and I never liked the gray face mask or the dulled orange they introduced or the brown socks or the weird varied striping they had on the pants for a while. But they didn't totally modernize the uni in those instances, so I wasn't offended either.
So now it's time for a major redesign. I've been looking forward to it, here it is, and...
I don't hate it. I'm not crazy about it, but I don't hate it.
What I like is that they are mostly sticking with the no-frills design ethic and they left the helmets empty as they should. I prefer a white mask, but brown is fine; I love the brighter color of orange. I think it will really pop, especially in person. None of the design elements, except the stupid pants wordmark, are offensive to me, and they make sense in the Browns uni paradigm.
I'm just not crazy about it. Not crazy about the orange numbers on either the white or the brown jerseys; don't like the orange socks much; miss some of the old elements that made the original uniform really crisp.
I wish they had done some things differently, but when I compare this to, say, the abomination that was inflicted upon Tampa Bay last year, I can't complain that much.
|19 weeks 5 days ago||Okay, since I began typing||
Okay, since I began typing (tablet, it's a legit excuse) several have posted that are contemporary to or older than my experience. So some of you are old fogies like me.
|19 weeks 5 days ago||You guys are (almost) all||
You guys are (almost) all young whippersnappers. I began using the ancient Prodigy service no later than 1992, and possibly in '91. There were lots of geeky message boards to plug into. I remember the glorious early days of the World Wide Web with its all-gray backgrounds and images that didn't automatically load because your 14.4 dialup couldn't handle it. Back then the best sites were places like "Star Wars at UPENN" and various converted Usenet resources.
In '94 I started using Grex, an Ann Arbor-based conference/chat/open Linux system that offered free email (I'm a fellow pine guy, Sharik!), a well-designed "party" chat system, and the attractive address of "cyberspace.org." It was a split from the older m-net (arbornet.org) that offered substantially the same services but differed wildly in financial stability (both ran on donations), governance, and culture. I used Grex more, but I was involved in both and the culture was pretty involved. I believe grex still exists, but it is a shell (ha ha Unix joke) of its former self.
I learned a great deal from these early immersions in net culture, and I retain a number of skills (rapid typing, for example--posts like this, composed on an iPad, would be triple the size if I had a regular keyboard) and holdover predispositions that were learned the hard way, through years of discussion and conversation and debate and hurt feelings and misunderstandings and adaptation. I encountered and dealt with abusive posting, gutless anonymity, fake accounts, way-too-personal flame war, grammar fascism (I was a big offender--I still do not respond well to a question that begins "r u") and robust debate before it was cool.
I feel old. But I'm grateful for the experience. Prior to entering ministry I worked in a hospital support career that has stretched to 14 years (I still fill in every so often at a scheduling office) that I started entirely because I was able to type very fast, thanks to spending hours every day talking to people I had never met.
|19 weeks 5 days ago||Hey, I gave you some heat for||
Hey, I gave you some heat for being a bit quick on the trigger when you posted that you were cancelling, and of course you got much more from other sources. But props are in order from me, as this follow-through demonstrates that you weren't just being dramatic. You are, after all, just exercising discretion in your recreational choices. So this is a mild mea culpa, even if I might not make such a choice myself.
|20 weeks 2 days ago||This is a radical change from||
This is a radical change from the old status quo; "the same teams playing in the FF every year" used to be a common, if slightly overstated, complaint. I want to say that the last first-time champion before UMD was Maine in 1993, a massive stretch of relative predictability.
The improvement of smaller schools is great for the sport. Sooner or later the B1G will be in the mix.
|20 weeks 2 days ago||He loves college hockey.||
He loves college hockey. Pumps it year-round. That counts for a lot.
|20 weeks 4 days ago||Yes they have, and it has||
Yes they have, and it has occasionally gotten silly, but in fairness politics aren't actually being discussed. They are being identified to illustrate the person's perspective. Little arguing over merits.
And the fact is that this blog focuses on football more than anything else and the football coach has made pretty significant waves on this. You can't pretend it didn't happen.
|20 weeks 4 days ago||It's gone national in certain||
It's gone national in certain political circles, FWIW.
|20 weeks 5 days ago||There was a double. But the||
There was a double. But the Twins haven't made it past second base yet this season.
|20 weeks 5 days ago||Well, in better news, it||
Well, in better news, it looked like Joe Nathan is headed to the DL today as well. You hate to have JV on the line, but a Nathan drop has to almost completely cancel out any WAR loss here, right?
Best case scenario here is that the Tigers start well and win a handful of tight games with someone like Soria getting the saves, so that by the time Nathan comes back the closer position has been "won" by a better player.
|20 weeks 5 days ago||Totally agree that those guys||
Totally agree that those guys producing would be huge... But I doubt we see three other games this year where they produce like this. Unfortunately this is probably a fluke.
That said, I have some hope that the 8-through-1 turn of the order might be able to manufacture some runs at key moments late in games when the heart of the order comes up empty. We'll see.
|20 weeks 6 days ago||This is not college football,||
This is not college football, where the stars of next year are almost always guys whom everybody knows this year. There is no predictable progression in mbb the way there is in football; every season is a fresh, new creature with a completely different landscape of star players and competitive teams.
Media types know this. They watch the games, they know who teams have. And they know that things change in a big way.
In this environment, Michigan returning all of its key players and getting guys back from injury is huge. They're going to make a leap. That's how the sport works now. You are using a paradigm of a different sport.
|20 weeks 6 days ago||Developing a pipeline of pass||
Developing a pipeline of pass rushers is something Hoke worked hard to accomplish, and failed. And, unfortunately, I don't think that is precisely on him; the type of player needed is very hard to come by.
Michigan needs to start coming by them to keep up with those guys on the Olentangy.
"The defense is designed around his uncommon abilities" sounds really, really awesome. If Peppers stays healthy, it sounds like he will be a terror for two years. Then, perhaps, he hits the draft just as similarly-skilled recruits are breaking down the door to replace him. Legit optimism here.
|20 weeks 6 days ago||I would prefer 92-93 Michael||
I would prefer 92-93 Michael Jordan, but that's just me.
Then again I would settle for 94-95 Hakeem Olajuwan.
|21 weeks 28 min ago||I read what he said to mean||
I read what he said to mean the how strong the B1G will be in the coming season, since we are looking to a hypothetical future title. FWIW.
And if that's the case, I think he's got a point. Next season the B1G is going to be a monster. Wisconsin comes back to the pack, so the proverbial head gets cut off, but teams like Maryland and of course Michigan are going to be massively better. Game on.
|21 weeks 10 hours ago||I hope the OL is further||
I hope the OL is further ahead than it looked, and that the running game problems really were just a result of the OL's mix & match nature. Because Michigan has a serious skill problem on the outside, and we have seen nothing in the last few years to suggest that the performance was just a blip.
Home did a good job recruiting players, but there was always one area in which his hauls were less impressive: explosive skill players. "SEC speed" talk has generally been overblown for 20 years, but Hoke almost totally failed to recruit any explosive players in his entire tenure. The isolated exceptions (Drake Harris sadface) kinda prove the rule. Jeremy Gallon's evolution from slowish slot ninja to terrific route-runner and the massive Devin Funchess sort of papered over this issue, but it has been a real problem.
As a consequence, Michigan's offense needs to be able to grind opponents in a big way. A decent, build-for-the-future 8 or 9-win season is going to have to feature a lot of ugly, defensive grindfests.
This wasn't exactly an encouraging offensive performance in that regard. But, at least, I believe we have the staff to mold the guys at the point of attack to become the kind of front line we need. And, in fairness, it's quite possible that many of the blocking failures were instances of experienced defensive players that we know can play beating less experienced backup OL guys that aren't ready yet.
|21 weeks 1 day ago||I think conference success is||
I think conference success is good for us. I am, however, just as happy to see MSU lose.
FWIW a quick scan of the last thirty years suggests that six teams in the final is the largest number of any conference in the entire 64-team-tournament era, edging the Big East which has five thanks to Villanova and Georgetown's appearances in 1985. No other B1G teams appeared in that timespan, but existing teams appear more frequently (Michigan, obviously, has appeared four times total in the 64-team era).
|22 weeks 2 days ago||Yes, he was on the team.||
Yes, he was on the team. However, McGary has been hurt for portions of every season (including this one) since he came to Michigan. He was hurt early this year in OKC and there's no reason to think such a thing wouldn't have happened if he were in Ann Arbor instead. So it's not exactly a random, unusual gut-punch that stripped Michigan of his services last season.
|22 weeks 2 days ago||Of course if Trey Burke and||
Of course if Trey Burke and THJ were still in school...
|22 weeks 4 days ago||He's not a "top level talent"||
He's not a "top level talent" and never was. He's a good player, the kind of guy who could make the NHL if he develops and finds the right niche, but nobody has ever considered him a dynamite prospect.
|22 weeks 4 days ago||Even the best case||
Even the best case interpretation of what's "really going on" is bad. That would probably be pressure from the Jets to sign with the loud hints that he is unlikely to develop enough to be worth signing next year. So this would be, possibly, Copp's only shot to catch on with a team that will offer a track to the NHL if he develops.
|23 weeks 3 days ago||Money? When the realignment||
When the realignment occurred, one of the few negatives I anticipated was the annihilation of existing, robust conference tournament traditions. Particularly the Final Five.
So we knew this could be a negative. But I did not imagine it would be this bad. It seems that the compromise option to alternate locations between locii at St. Paul and Detroit (which I favored) has made the tournament less than the sum of its parts. People have gotten out of the annual habit of attending, and they can look at the prices and decide they won't miss it too much.
This is not a college hockey fanbase problem. Michigan and Michigan State sold out a Friday game at the Joe merely weeks ago. And it's not specifically a basketball problem (though I'm sure many fans who saw the game from home appreciated having games to flip to) because MSU played early in the day and Michigan isn't participating at all.
It's alienation of the customer base, I guess. I'd be interested to know your thoughts.
|23 weeks 3 days ago||Different culture, different||
Different culture, different situation. The MN high school tournament is a unique event that does not translate to anything else. Meanwhile, the Joe sold out for UM-MSU earlier this year. Won't be close to that tonight.
|23 weeks 3 days ago||This post makes me angry.||
This post makes me angry.
Not because I disagree with the content, because I don't. I have long been on the fix-the-NCAA wagon.
It angers me because I was considering a long, exhaustive diary to post next week, arguing for a change of NCAA tournament format.
My anger is completely selfish. And, really, unnecessary--Brian here makes very good arguments that don't overlap with mine all that much. Save for one crucial exception--the fans are getting the shaft, and it is ridiculous. The NCAA hockey regional system is a complete and total embarrassment to the sport.
It's worth mentioning that prior to the formation of B1G hockey, the WCHA held a Final Five every year in St. Paul that frequently sold out. There is, therefore, precedent for a big one-weekend championship. However, that tournament worked because so many large fanbases lived in close proximity to the site. Even if Minnesota didn't make it, NoDak, UMD, St. Cloud, and others were likely to and would draw well. The B1G has none of this available. It can't work in any venue.
|23 weeks 4 days ago||Prediction? ...Pain.|
|23 weeks 4 days ago||Yeah. Trolling the media is a||
Yeah. Trolling the media is a jab comment at a presser. Practice time is important; there's no way any competent (or even incompetent) coach wastes a fraction of the time and effort needed to rep a player at an unusual position just for the benefit of someone not on the team.
|23 weeks 4 days ago||The problem is that you have||
The problem is that you have six teams and you want them all in a playoff. And, frankly, you want Minnesota in St. Paul and both UM and MSU in Detroit. So they regurgitated the "Super Six" concept and here you are. They'll probably draw 6-8000 for the nightcap with Michigan in it, and MSU's presence tomorrow guarantees a fair gate (but not necessarily half-full) tomorrow.
Assuming you have a neutral site final, a best-of-3 format would not involve all teams. The play-ins would have such a series, while the top seeds would not. Even so it would be more fair to lower seeds, because they wouldn't have to win 3 games in 3 days in the final.
|23 weeks 5 days ago||We got them in Minnesota, big||
We got them in Minnesota, big time. Easy to photograph.
|23 weeks 6 days ago||Your trolling is poorly executed||
Actually I was talking about today's thread discussion of a PSU frat, and I hadn't accounted for the possibility that you may not be utilizing the peripheral vision necessary to see that thread on the sidebar, quite literally right below this one. My apologies for the confusion.
I see you are defending the actions of the brothers in question based not on the choices they made but on the financial status of the victim. It is improbable that you really believe this, since such logic befits someone young and immature enough that they would not be able to write complete sentences on August 24, 2008, the apparent date you registered on this site. I suspect you are quite a bit older than that.
Justifying serious vandalism because the property involved is having financial issues is an amusing version of the tired, discredited trope that vandalizing/stealing from an organization is justifiable because they're "rich enough to afford it." In both cases such logic is hogwash. Such "it's not a big deal" thinking is, however, tragically widespread, frequently infecting easily-corrupted organizations as widely varied as university athletic departments, Wall Street financial firms, municipal police departments, and federal government agencies.
The results are bad. And the activity ought to be condemned and opposed. No matter how much one wishes to airbrush it, it is wrong.
And your "defense" of it is scarcely believable.
|23 weeks 6 days ago||This whole attitude is||
This whole attitude is repugnant. Whether it's police, a chapter of the AFL, a frat, the administration of a religious organization, or any other such group, the idea that it is understandable or acceptable to refuse to name people who have committed serious violations of the law because they are "one of us" is absolutely garbage.
A culture that encourages this kind of behavior or the kind of behavior being discussed at Penn State is corrupt; a culture that then attempts to shield its membership from being accountable for such choices is morally bankrupt.
|23 weeks 6 days ago||If you're picking a winner,||
If you're picking a winner, absolutely. But if you are assembling an entire bracket in a large field, the calculus changes. Every year, in every bracket, there are dozens of low-probability choices to be made. A particular upset, a certain 4-seed running to the Final Four, etc. Even a chalk bracket is a low-probability risk since we know things never stick to chalk.
So what we are talking about is simply a very prominent, visible low-probability pick. It is little different in principle from picking, say, a 14 over a 3, except that it looks like a bigger deal.
|23 weeks 6 days ago||I strongly suspect Kentucky||
I strongly suspect Kentucky is dirty. Cal does not have a track record of integrity at other locations; why would he clean things up now that he is at the program that wants to win the most?
But that is kinda beside the point, because if Kentucky is dirty, so are a bunch of other schools. We know, for example, that UNC is staring at the guillotine. Syracuse just got pinched. Whispers about programs like Kansas abound. Even apparently "do it the right way" schools like Duke are known for pulling recruits from cities that are rife with misbehavior.
That's the landscape. Either the sport is mostly clean, or it is widely dirty. Either way, what Kentucky is doing this year is impressive.
|23 weeks 6 days ago||Let's tap the brakes on any||
Let's tap the brakes on any specific assessments until we have more details. A bundle of 25 channels that includes some ESPNs for $40 is a bad deal. A bundle of 40 channels, or a serious sports package that includes BTN (Fox is involved, so this is plausible) that starts at $30 is rather a bigger deal. These "small" details make a big difference, and we don't know what they are yet.
But I'll say this: within weeks of the Sling rollout (I subscribed) Charter offered me the best TV package deal I've ever gotten from them. They are already my internet provider, and the bundle price they gave to add a basic but decent TV package cost me... An extra $20. Isn't that interesting?
The key here is that competition is on the market. And that means we will all be better off.
|23 weeks 6 days ago||Also true for WatchESPN. If I||
Also true for WatchESPN. If I am using that app I cannot watch anything with Sling on another device.
|23 weeks 6 days ago||Game theory. The trendy game||
Game theory. The trendy game theory pick this week is to not pick Kentucky to win, because "everybody" is and therefore if you get that right your chances of winning a bracket are still very low. Pick them to get upset, though, and in the small window of scenarios where they actually lose, you're playing against a much smaller field.
That's the premise, anyway.
|23 weeks 6 days ago||I agree, I think Kentucky's||
I agree, I think Kentucky's run to be one of the greatest teams of all time is fascinating. There are years when a playoff begins with no clear favorite, and those are entertaining as we watch things play out on the field/court/ice. But there are also years where there is a clear-cut favorite, and their primacy brings an order and perspective that can also be very entertaining.
Kentucky is the storyline. But they are not a sure thing. And, helpfully, this is not the second or third year running of this, which would be boring. So I'm interested in what will happen.
BTW, those odds: the odds for Kentucky beating the 16 are way higher than 99%.
|24 weeks 5 hours ago||Let's be patient: the||
Let's be patient: the consequences for this sort of thing we're almost certainly spelled out when Glasgow was reinstated. We don't know what the conditions were, but scenarios for what would happen if he violated probation were probably considered. And Harbaugh would either explicitly state how his rules were different, or that he was keeping Hoke's conditions in place.
If the rule was, one drink and you're off the team, he's gone. If the rule was that any kind of probation violation gets him off the team, he's probably gone.
But then, those might not be the guidelines. It sounds like he's not getting jail time here, so we'll have to wait and see. But Graham surely knew what the potential consequences were.
|24 weeks 5 hours ago||I actually think AA has some||
I actually think AA has some problems and may not be the best solution...
But when a huge part of your life (football) and your future (small chance at a lucrative pro career, vs. jail time and putting education in jeopardy) requires you to abstain from alcohol due to a serious offense, and you are incapable of abstaining from it, that's a major warning sign.
This is not just him being one of the guys the weekend before St. Patrick's day. This is doing something he knows can get him in serious trouble, knowing there is a high probability of being caught.
|24 weeks 10 hours ago||I agree that there isn't that||
I agree that there isn't that much that needs to change. I do, however, find the default "it's the ADs that are the problem" explanation inappropriate here. Late-game basketball has long been hard to watch, and that is a structural problem basketball has that is difficult to change without fundamentally altering the nature of the game. The exception is the number of times out, which I would love to see reduced.
Long replay reviews are a drag and a problem. Of course, the alternative is that crucial officiating decisions would be more likely to be wrong. That's the tradeoff. Until someone innovatively streamlines the replay concept and applies it to basketball, this is what we're stuck with. I want faster finishes too, but I want decisions to be correct most. Would we trade a sleepy four-minute stoppage to have that bogus foul called on Burke's clean block of Seva reversed? Yes.
I do favor a shorter shot clock. A cerebral coach like Beilein may use all of the clock now, but he would do just fine with five or nine fewer seconds. It seems like a no-brainer to me.
|24 weeks 10 hours ago||Here's an idea: punish||
Here's an idea: punish fouling by disqualifying players who commit too many fouls. Say, five or six.
|24 weeks 1 day ago||Not too upset here. It's the||
Not too upset here. It's the NIT. Michigan simply lost too many games.
But this might have been one of the most enjoyable mediocre seasons of any team I've ever followed. After Levert and Walton went down, it was a given thaf the season was lost; watching a team assembled in an episode of Junkyard Wars grow into a competitor twice every week was a delight. There was no pressure, and every game seemed to reveal a new feature of a player we had never seen before.
And because there has been so much recent success, and because Michigan doesn't have a huge basketball reputation to uphold, a down year is ok. It is much less discouraging than watching a mediocre football team with an uncertain future, or a hockey team that ought to be in the tourney every year fall short. This is a team having a blip year, suffering from defections driven by recent success and injuries, growing into a contender.
It was fun.
Wait till next year.
|24 weeks 3 days ago||People aren't fleecing their||
People aren't fleecing their consumers, because the consumers are willing to pay the prices charged. This is not food or water or gasoline; this is an entirely non-essential recreational activity. One that is, almost without exception, accessible on television for those who cannot afford the cost of attendance.
It sounds like you want tickets to be simultaneously available and affordable. This is neither reasonable nor realistic to expect all of the time. And it is unfair to the regular fans who invest in tickets before the value of the game has been determined.
|24 weeks 3 days ago||The exception is when a home||
The exception is when a home team plays in a final. There is known value in those tickets. But generally you are correct.
|24 weeks 3 days ago||The premise against scalping||
The premise against scalping from the OP appears to be that brokers allegedly hoard large quantities of event tickets acquired before "regular fans" can get them.
I'm not in the habit of attending tough ticket concerts, so perhaps ticketmaster safeguards are indeed inadequate in that area. But this is an unsupportable assertion when considering most sporting events. Michigan games, for example, are predominantly ticketed to season holders; brokers do not have first access.
The Frozen Four mentioned in the OP is an interesting case, too, since those tickets are distributed to requesters by lottery long before the teams are set; preference is given to long-time holders. The FF is an annual menagerie of college hockey jerseys and colors because the majority of it's dedicated fanbase goes every year. Other tickets are distributed to participant schools.
In these cases, most of the tickets available originally belonged to legitimate citizen holders who want to recoup value. Why shouldn't they profit from a popular event? I scalped a ticket to the 1997 Ohio State game from a couple who needed the money to make rent. I had the cash to spend. Why should that be wrong?
The OP references the 1998 hockey championship. Not mentioned is the fact that Boston College was playing for the title... In Boston. So, naturally, there was high demand. And there were fans (particularly fans of the teams who lost the semis) who could reasonably think the extra money was more important than attending the final. What's wrong with that?
Now, it can be fairly pointed out that many of those tickets wound up in the hands of brokers. Well, yeah, that will happen. Brokers often buy from people looking to sell quickly and resell at a higher price. They can do this because they are committed--they have a lot to sell and are willing to keep working until after the event begins. They will do all the legwork. This offers something to Joe Average Fan who has an extra or who has a wedding to go to on gameday; he doesn't want to spend the time dealing with finding a buyer, or waiting near the gate, or (if he's going to the event) risk missing anything. The broker offers to do all of these things in return for part of the profit.
Scalping offers the opportunity for people who really value attending an event an opportunity to spend what they value on it. It allows ticket holders to make some money from a ticket that has market value. It should not be restricted.
|24 weeks 4 days ago||I sat in that section once or||
I sat in that section once or twice at Munn, but it's not very big. If you don't already have a ticket, it's kinda weird to try to elbow a fellow Michigan fan out of their seat.
But SRO at Munn isn't bad at all. Find some other SRO fans and stake out some space.
|24 weeks 4 days ago||Not a banner year for NCAA||
Not a banner year for NCAA women's hockey coaching changes. UMD has elected not to renew the contract for coach Shannon Miller and the ensuing uproar is big-time ugly. Words like "lawyers" and "discrimination" are involved.
Bad year for the sport.
|24 weeks 4 days ago||I love DST and would||
I love DST and would absolutely loathe a rollback. Here in the central time zone it's a big plus to have daylight until 9pm or so in the summer; in the winter I am indifferent about it but it is dark by 4:30pm on standard time. To me, winter darkness has to be endured anyway, so it's not significant whether or not the hour is later or not.
In spring and summer, though, having the daylight later is huge. There's nothing quite as exciting as going out to do something after work at 6pm knowing that the day is still young.
If they eliminate DST, the time should be an hour ahead permanently. But I think it should be kept.
FWIW, if Michigan were to drop it, it wouldn't make them pioneers. Indiana and Arizona are already standard-time-only states, except (I believe) for the corner of Indiana that is metro Chicago.
|25 weeks 2 days ago||I was pretty sour on his||
I was pretty sour on his prospects in the last thread about him, but I may have been engaging in excessive pessimism coupled with vague ignorance. T-Wolves coach Flip Saunders spoke about the move on his weekly radio appearance (which he keeps whether he's associated with the Wolves or not) and, in addition to the boilerplate platitudes about how GRIII would be a good pro, made a good point about his fit in Minnesota:
He has basically the same body type and role of not only Andrew Wiggins but also Shabazz Muhammad, both guys Minnesota is working hard to develop. There simply aren't minutes for him.
Wiggins was, of course, not on the roster when GRIII was drafted, so he made more sense for them then. Now, behind two young top 10-type guys, his inability to get minutes makes sense without meaning he can't cut it.
In Philly he'll have the opposite issue--the only way they won't give him floor time is if he is so good that he threatens to win games for them.
|25 weeks 2 days ago||He wavered quite a bit when||
He wavered quite a bit when it was time to decide to go to Houghton, too. I recall the word being that he changed his mind a couple of times. I think he loves Ann Arbor, and it seems very logical to think that he would love to come back.
And let's not kid ourselves: the ceiling is a lot higher at Michigan than at Tech.
|25 weeks 4 days ago||He wasn't a great defender,||
He wasn't a great defender, either. You're right on--he needs to fill a niche of some kind, and nothing he does fills such a niche.
And Minnesota is a team that is trying out the kids to see what they can do, too. I'm not optimistic about his NBA future. But in fairness, unless he really changed his game this year, if he had stayed he probably would've been undrafted.
|25 weeks 6 days ago||Yep. Mental Health/Chem Dep||
Yep. Mental Health/Chem Dep services have an entire layer of confidentiality attached to them that doesn't exist anywhere else.
|25 weeks 6 days ago||A few years ago, when I||
A few years ago, when I worked at a small hospital in LA, some lower level workers got in huge (like, lawyers and police and here's a security guard to escort you out now that you've been fired huge) trouble for accessing hundreds of celebrity records at UCLA. This naturally got our attention at my humble employment, but we already had pretty thorough procedures in place so long as they were followed.
And it was important to follow them, because when you work admitting at a hospital in LA for long enough you are likely to encounter the occasional celebrity. And I did, but with two exceptions (who weren't patients and were not directly associated with patients) I still don't even tell my wife who they were.
|26 weeks 12 hours ago||I understand what you're||
I understand what you're saying, but evil is a choice. There's no such thing as "can't help it."
|26 weeks 23 hours ago||Why should we let moral-free||
Why should we let moral-free hecklers dictate whether or not it is appropriate to say something nice about a family member in public?
If the very mention of a woman going to college is enough to prompt people to abandon their humanity, something is wrong.
|26 weeks 4 days ago||On the plus side, people do||
On the plus side, people do tend to remember my name easily.
|26 weeks 4 days ago||For some of us, "Not that||
For some of us, "Not that John Madden" refers to the portly ex-coach color commentator, because "Yes that John Madden" is a Michigan Hockey Champion with an inclination toward scoring short-handed goals.
|26 weeks 4 days ago||Name: SteveCity: Duluth,||
|27 weeks 3 days ago||You may not call it a "real"||
You may not call it a "real" honeymoon, but if it happens right after you get married, that's exactly what it is; your later trip is still a great trip.
|28 weeks 4 days ago||Forgot to specify my own||
Forgot to specify my own answer: We'll be going Friday night. Still can't decide which jersey to wear.
|28 weeks 4 days ago||Pity I'll be in town on the||
Pity I'll be in town on the wrong night. Ah well.
|29 weeks 10 hours ago||This is ridiculous. Get a||
This is ridiculous. Get a correct block call against Louisville and we might already have won a title.
Yeah, Beilein has lost out on some recruits. But Michigan didn't hire him to recruit the biggest stars; they hired him to build a competitive basketball team. Four years ago I would have said the ceiling for Michigan basketball is, in a four-year period, three tourney appearances and one decent run. We're already way past that.
Michigan is not and never has been Duke, Kentucky, or Kansas. It never will be. It can, however, be as good as most other teams, with solid coaching, good talent evaluation, and the occasional rebuilding year that sets the team up for future success.
Yeah, I think recruiting could be a bit better. But your last sentence is so absurd that you are either being willfully ignorant, or you're just trolling.
|29 weeks 11 hours ago||I don't object to much of||
I don't object to much of your post, but let's address this statement: "If Michigan was cheating with the big boys, then why was Michigan busted and not the big boys?"
Michigan wasn't busted because they self-reported or because infractions just naturally floated past the nose of NCAA investigators. They got busted because there was a poorly timed car accident, and more importantly because the crucial figure in the infractions was prosecuted for violating federal law.
Those serious legal problems were the dominant reason that NCAA violations (which are not against the law, and are enforced by a governing body that cannot compel cooperation in its constituents) came to light. If memory serves, Chris Webber only spoke candidly about his involvement because it was part of a deal struck with prosecutors.
This is a common theme in sports: scandals only occur when those breaking the rules are prosecuting for breaking laws that exist outside of the rules of the sport. From Reggie Bush's trouble with agents (he was used, that's what started that whole thing) to police uncovering illegal operations in a Columbus tattoo parlor to Federal drug law investigations revealing widespread sports doping, a lot of the worst scandals have heir roots in conventional legal trouble.
This is natural, since sports have artificial rules of competition that are not laws for regular citizens. I do not get ticketed for "holding" if I grab my daughter in the course of horseplay, for example. The problem is that these sports governing bodies cannot enforce guidelines with the same thoroughness that government law enforcement can.
The fact is, athletes don't get caught doping unless they make a mistake. Many succeed. And many schools likely get away with breaking NCAA rules because they are not violating laws. They don't get caught unless they make a mistake.
|29 weeks 3 days ago||I'm going to okay devil's||
I'm going to play devil's advocate here: yes, this looks bad, but let's not get carried away. Reporters learn news that they don't report all the time. Sometimes it's not solid enough to report, sometimes it's off the record, and sometimes they are asked to embargo the report until after the fact.
|30 weeks 3 days ago||Imagine how good Devin||
Imagine how good Devin could've been. Harbaugh's offense is the perfect balance for him, especially with a working running game. I don't think he would've regressed the way he did.
|30 weeks 3 days ago||Sad about this. Not because||
Sad about this.
Not because it's particularly bad for Michigan on the field, or because it's an unpleasant departure (doesn't appear to be). It's just that, after that awful Nebraska game that was not his fault, I wanted him to get one nice moment on the field in a Michigan uniform. Even if it was just mop-up duty to modest cheers. To have your legacy be a half on the road as a sacrifice to Borges incompetence is just not fair.
|31 weeks 11 hours ago||This team is a ton of fun||
This team is a ton of fun right now. Back-end problems make things a bit more nervous than I (or anyone else) would like, but how refreshing to own offense after a prolonged offensive lull in the post-Porter years.
The contrast in offensive danger between this team and the defense-first two-line team that came oh-so-close in St. Paul is startling. But, hopefully, these guys continue to grow into a full team the way those did. Get in the tournament and they have a real shot.
|31 weeks 5 days ago||Former ref Jerry Austin was||
Former ref Jerry Austin was on the radio this morning saying that it was his understanding that all the balls were checked at halftime due to the question from the Colts. He presumes the pressure would have been corrected then, as well.
|31 weeks 5 days ago||To be honest, that actually||
To be honest, that actually sounds like exactly the sort of thing that Belichick would do--just part of finding every angle, every corner of the rules to exploit, every advantage to win. Seems right up his alley.
|31 weeks 5 days ago||Just to be clear, since||
Just to be clear, since several have brought up the Colts footballs: I'm not suggesting that this is incidental. I'm wondering if the Pats deliberately used hot temperatures to gain the desired effect without doctoring post-inspection, thus technically not breaking the rules. It would fit Belicheck's profile.
|31 weeks 5 days ago||I've been wondering this,||
I've been wondering this, though: suppose the Pats deliberately inflated the balls with hotter air in a hot room. The balls are checked right after they're received, 2.5 hours before kickoff. They check out at the time... but could they be holding enough heat to lose 2-3 lbs after 3 hours?
|32 weeks 4 days ago||Totally disagree. I||
Totally disagree. I understand why you say this--it is quite possible that nobody SHOULD take Mariotta in the top 20. But history shows that football teams desperate for a quarterback will take the best available guy in the first round. This is how Blaine Gabbert, Jake Locker, and Christian Ponder all went in the top 15 in one season.
|32 weeks 4 days ago||I think it will be good.||
I think it will be good. Winston's problems are problems of judgement and choice, not intelligence. Intelligent people choose to do bad things all the time. He'll be so carefully managed in his pre-draft work that the teams will be blown away by him.
|32 weeks 4 days ago||Maybe. Or maybe he has||
Maybe. Or maybe he has another year that is statistically underwhelming, stranded by quarterbacks that can't get him the ball, and the bloom falls off of the Rose.
|32 weeks 4 days ago||He's not loved right now.||
He's not loved right now. They want him gone. Imagine how we would feel if DB were still in charge saying "Brady Hoke is our coach, he is going to get it done." That's Iowa right now.
|32 weeks 5 days ago||It's a great place with lots||
It's a great place with lots of outdoor stuff to do. Really sparkles in July and August, and if you like winter sports it's fantastic.
And you're quite right. I took some guys from my youth group to a UMD basketball game (division 2) last weekend because it was close and cheap. It was... not crowded. But we sat right behind the bench and heard everything the coach said in timeouts. It's a tradeoff, but it's nice.
The distance is a big reason why UMD's hockey team does well here; while they don't sell out every game, there is a solid fanbase that always attends and the arena is terrific.
|32 weeks 5 days ago||Saginaw's OHL team, as I||
Saginaw's OHL team, as I understand it, does quite well. There's a market in that area for this type of team that is a lot harder to carve out in a Detroit Suburb with plentiful college and NHL hockey close by. OHL teams tend to work in small-to-midlevel communities where the combination of good on-ice action and the absence of better, higher-level options close by makes it an attractive ticket.
OHL teams have done terribly in close proximity to Toronto for years; no reason to believe it's any better here. But some teams flourish in spaces where they find a niche. I don't think the Whalers ever had a niche.
|32 weeks 5 days ago||No reason Yost can't host||
No reason Yost can't host women's hockey. The issue is taking the effort to build a program, which can be quite an undertaking. Now, there is a good coach on the market--UMD's women's coach, Shannon Miller, has won multiple national titles up here and will not have her contract renewed. She might be a candidate to start a program, though the resulting acrimony and the lingering possibility that she may sue probably make that situation too sticky for Michigan to bother with.
|32 weeks 6 days ago||What's the point of Mgoblog?||
What's the point of Mgoblog? This is sports fandom. By definition it is a spurious exercise, an endeavor to assign meaning to a game kids play on a fake grass field with colorful paint.
So the parallels have no meaning to you. No problem, it was 46 years ago, ignore it, don't post. It's silly.
But OSU is the champion. They are young. They will almost certainly be heavy favorites. There are few games on their schedule they have a chance to lose before visiting. Michigan does have a first year coach.
They may well not mean anything, but they do exist.
And, as for why now? Because everybody is anointing OSU as the next dynasty, even (especially?) on here. Maybe.
But maybe not.
|32 weeks 6 days ago||I dunno man, I like football.||
I dunno man, I like football. A lot. I happen to think the sport is better when the M-OSU rivalry is huge. I think it will be huge this year. After a depressing stretch where it has been basically irrelevant, I'm excited about it. Maybe we win, maybe we don't, but we matter and they matter and The Game matters.
I was raised on bedtime tales of the Ten Year War. I have vivid childhood memories of big tilts in the 80s. Attending the '97 game remains my all-time favorite sports moment. I endured taunts and threats and had great times at three games in Columbus in the early 00s.
I love it. I think it matters again. I can be upset that OSU is winning something like the Eeyores on here, but I can't lie and pretend that I'm not actually excited to see Michigan take this team on next fall.
Read my history if you feel like it; I don't go for impressiveness or intimidation. I rarely make posts shorter than a paragraph. But I feel strongly about college football, and I'm way higher on the sport and the team I follow than I was last month or last season.
|32 weeks 6 days ago||Man, you really are grumpy||
Man, you really are grumpy about this. Yes, I am quite aware that Michigan was well-ranked in '68. Of course, this year's Michigan team played OSU much closer than that year's, but who's counting?
Yeah, I agree that we can't always hearken back to '69 or '97 every season. But there is, I believe, talent on Michigan. We know we have a coach who can match up to his counterpart better than at any time since Jim Tressel was hired. And the parallels are uniquely close in many respects.
There's a lot of sky-is-falling talk on the board tonight. Not everything here is the end of the world.
|33 weeks 12 min ago||I've guaranteed nothing.||
I've guaranteed nothing. Noting the parallels (and producing the actual statistics) does not guarantee results. I do expect the game to be epic.
|33 weeks 29 min ago||I don't drink, but I do have||
I don't drink, but I do have to rise early. Thanks for asking.
|33 weeks 45 min ago||Perhaps, but in my defense I||
Perhaps, but in my defense I only posted it once.
|33 weeks 47 min ago||Michigan's, or Ohio State's?||
Michigan's, or Ohio State's? That OSU team was an all-time great. 68 and 70 were incredible teams. Don't fall prey to recency bias.
|33 weeks 1 hour ago||Dude, OSU will be riding a||
Dude, OSU will be riding a 20-plus game win streak as defending champs, with talk of dynasty, next November. We'll have a small handful of dispiriting losses and a new coach. And our guys (who are watching this now, hungry) are going to line up and run it right down their throats.
It is going to be epic. Start the clock now, Michigan-OSU 2015 will be the biggest it has been since '06, a matchup worthy of the rivalry.
I can't wait.
Of course, if they choke this one away, oh well.
|33 weeks 3 hours ago||Interesting premise. Could||
Interesting premise. Could have some humor here too--it has potential to be enjoyably light-hearted. Also could add a "what he said, what he meant" element. Like: Brady Hoke. What he said: "We didn't execute." If he could say it: "We totally stink," or, "I have no idea what to do."
|33 weeks 6 days ago||Good work, me||
Double post. I'm twice as happy.
|33 weeks 6 days ago||Nice to have you posting||
Nice to have you posting again, CF. I follow you elsewhere.
|33 weeks 6 days ago||You see the phrase "great||
You see the phrase "great article" posted a lot, and I've become skeptical of it. But this is a legit great article--the insight provided is fabulous. The headline reads like a throwaway opinion piece, but the content overdelivers on the premise.
Nick Baumgardner really does a good job. I have to believe he'll be poached before too long--he is producing great stuff for mlive. Best Ann Arbor M football beat writing since Jim Cnockaert, IMO, except hopefully he won't follow the same path to disaster.
|34 weeks 4 days ago||Good thing the B1G doesn't||
Good thing the B1G doesn't have any speed or Wisconsin would've scored even faster.
|35 weeks 11 hours ago||Rap is not a bad guy. He's a||
Rap is not a bad guy. He's a reporter who reports in a consistent fashion that works in an all-NFL context. This classy tweet is recognition of the fact that his reporting concentrated on sources that did not have the insight or ability to comment that the Michigan-side reports did.
Yes, the top NFL reporters are behind on this. So what? This is a coaching move that is virtually without precedent, and their reports did not prevent it from happening. Schefty and Rap are crediting, on a national stage, guys that don't have a fraction of their following in recognition of the fact that the little guys have this one right.
And, let's be clear--there was a kernel of truth to Rap's "convinced he wants to be an NFL coach" report: at the time, JH wanted to focus on the rest of the season at his NFL job. That's why we've waited so long. So Rap probably misinterpreted some real info and reported it. No big deal.
|35 weeks 5 days ago||Since John is part of that||
Since John is part of that family, doesn't any blanket statement that "family" is involved potentially include him? For all we know, he's just clarifying that he has no role in his brother's career decision. Or he's in "say nothing mode." Or anything. I don't read anything into this.
|35 weeks 6 days ago||Yeah, that's tough. Money||
Yeah, that's tough. Money doesn't make up for everything.
Let's be fair--it's good that Nuss gets a soft landing. He jumped onto a sinking ship, and even with all of the struggles produced real growth on the OL for the first time in a couple of years. It is impossible to tell how much incompetence comes from him and how much comes from his superiors. We know a lot of it came from the top.
|36 weeks 7 hours ago||BTW, this is a good spot to||
BTW, this is a good spot to point out that I disagreed with your call that B-ball's unis would not be changed this year. I felt my reasoning was sound, but you were right. So good call.
|36 weeks 7 hours ago||Yep. The white M is a giant||
Yep. The white M is a giant unforced error on an otherwise great look. The maize M on the blue panel was a real winner on the original unis.
|36 weeks 1 day ago||Maybe. But most aren't firing||
Maybe. But most aren't firing someone.
The key is probably a combination of roster and control offered. Maybe Oakland (whose QB looks promising) is enough of a draw. Or maybe Atlanta is willing to Nuke the staff. Or maybe Chicago has it's own "come home" to offer.
I can say this: it's a good thing Chuck Pagano is winning in Indy. Because that would be the Harbaugh dream team, assuming good terms with the front office.
|36 weeks 1 day ago||Scratch one NFL suitor off of||
Scratch one NFL suitor off of the list.
Ross deserves credit here; he's done some things that have raised my eyebrows, but despite liking DB he was not an obstacle to a prompt dismissal and has apparently put no foot wrong in the Harbaugh sweepstakes. Contrast to how he dealt with Harbaugh last time when JH wasn't coming, and it's impressive.
I genuinely hope Philbin succeeds there and rewards Ross for the confidence.
|36 weeks 1 day ago||Some necessary cold water.||
Some necessary cold water. You know where you can get good teleconference equipment? An Apple store. Pretty sure there are some Apple products in that area.
|36 weeks 1 day ago||Can you elaborate?||
Can you elaborate?
|36 weeks 1 day ago||Ne'ermind||
This post was a response to clarkiefromcanada, who appears to have deleted his post while I was typing. Ah well.
I want to believe.
|36 weeks 2 days ago||I guess, seeing the original||
I guess, seeing the original non-shopped version, it doesn't say Michigan after all. But I want to believe.
|36 weeks 2 days ago||Even includes the faded||
Even includes the faded portion that is partially masked through the laminate,and a pixelated word that appears to be "Michigan" on the other side of the same page.
So someone, somewhere, is trolling hard.
|36 weeks 2 days ago||Given your recent exposure as||
Given your recent exposure as someone who makes stuff up, I'm inclined to disbelieve the OP. In this case my post is, literally, "pics or it didn't happen."
No offense, but I was 14 once and thought I had to make stuff up to be significant, too.
|36 weeks 3 days ago||He's developed a fair number,||
He's developed a fair number, including Richard Sherman. Your inability to name them (And I can't name many myself) is not a strike against him.
|36 weeks 3 days ago||No team that is going to fire||
No team that is going to fire a coach is without holes; naturally Atlanta has some. Frighteningly, one of the problems you've identified (running game) is something that Harbaugh has a track record of doing very well.
And you have to believe that if Blank wants to make a serious run, he's going to clean out quite a bit to get Harbaugh. It's pretty much assumed that he wants a place with more control.
And the Niners are not bringing him back, so their leverage is pretty limited--I don't think they'll block any serious move, since Jim is really in the driver's seat with where he wants to sign. The Niners will get a pick or two, but the alternative is firing him and seeing him walk to the same team for free. It's over in SanFran.
|36 weeks 3 days ago||It's plausible, and it's bad.||
It's plausible, and it's bad. But it's not world-ending even if true, any more than home-shopping is a sure sign they're coming. If he hasn't made up his mind, then he's considering, and that means both options are appealing.
|36 weeks 3 days ago||He is not stringing Michigan||
He is not stringing Michigan along. But that doesn't mean he has made up his mind--most signs now point to Michigan being a real possibility, but almost everything says that he has not yet decided. That Jeff Moss anecdote worries me, because it's plausible and would fit with a guy who is really thinking hard but leaning away from Michigan.
And the Atlanta thing worries me. They have real talent. There is no way Mike Smith is there next year unless they actually win a playoff game or two. But they have a real QB and pieces around him and have seriously underperformed. They're in a weak division. The dominoes are ready.
And if Harbaugh is desperate to win a Super Bowl that is hard to turn down.
|36 weeks 3 days ago||You've got this wrong,||
You've got this wrong, because you're conflating two different kinds of talking heads.
Your typical guys that get most of the screen time are guys that are producing talking points, driving clicks, producing quotes, and all that. Quite true. That's where you get things like Kirk Herbstreit (who I like) calling Miles-to-Michigan.
But guys like Jay Glazer and Adam Schefter are engaged in a cutthroat battle to break real news first and best. They are not analysts, though they might occasionally venture in some analysis for tv/radio purposes. They report. They cultivate sources. They, unquestionably, know more than they can actually write or say on air. Sports news orgs pay significant cash for them to produce, and if another guy is better, that guy gets paid too. Schefter is a good example--he got hired by ESPN because he was scooping Mort and everyone else on their staff.
So I'm talking about the specific set of guys who really gather the hard information. If they get stagnant, they will open a space for someone else. If they are inaccurate, they lose significant prestige and their networks suffer. They are incredibly careful about what they report on, because (as we've seen in other spheres recently) being seriously wrong is a problem.
|36 weeks 3 days ago||Jim, your time is||
Jim, your time is now
The concept is good
No offense, nothing personal, truth to power, etc.
|36 weeks 3 days ago||It's all circumstantial. Like||
It's all circumstantial. Like the house shopping. It just means this is a real possibility. Why does this have to be a done deal for someone from Michigan to say, "Let's ship a nice tie down for Jim for a presser, show him we mean business." It doesn't have to be a done deal for a spouse to call an agent to find out what kind of houses are available should a move be made (indeed, that seems almost a pre-requisite for a spouse if she is being consulted in the decision).
It just means that the offer is legit. And, apparently, that it is getting real consideration.
But we already knew that.
|36 weeks 3 days ago||I'm not talking about the||
I'm not talking about the presidential loser's confidence, but also the confidence of many who shared his political slant and had rational reasons (such as real issues with polling assumptions that became significant last November) for doing so. Perhaps you were only reading coverage from one side of the spectrum; that's fine, of course, but then you sound like Joe Average NFL guy who reads none of this stuff from he M perspective but bases his prediction on Harbaugh on only what Rappoport and Schefter tweet.
Reasonable people can disagree. That's kinda the point.