"Jim's a tough guy and you can see his personality is all over this football team," Fitzgerald said.
|59 min 12 sec ago||Ely, huh? Didn't realize we||
Ely, huh? Didn't realize we had another Minnesotan on here, there are a few of us. Wave at me as you drive through.
|3 hours 1 min ago||I am of the opinion that||
I am of the opinion that Michigan won't reach its potential until after the transition we expect next year.
And I am of the opinion that while I may wish he chose to time it differently, our coach has earned the right to choose when he steps down. Only Wally Grant and Vic Heyliger (together) can claim an equivalent level of positive influence on the Michigan Hockey program. Even now, the expectations that the team is falling short of are established only because of the quality of Red Berenson.
|1 day 5 hours ago||Virtually every girl? Without||
Virtually every girl knew of this happening? Without their consent? If true, that's horrid and disgusting.
|1 day 5 hours ago||Well, I'm also wondering if||
Well, I'm also wondering if the victim was significantly intoxicated. Not my business but even if it's not an assault it could be something regretted that was exacerbated by LTT showing off to others.
The point is, this doesn't get to Harbaugh's desk if he is just keeping a clip for personal use. Dozens and probably hundreds found out about this first.
|1 day 5 hours ago||I think more happened than||
I think more happened than just this. This is scummy, but he was off the team less than a week later--there's stuff involved here that we're not hearing about. Maybe questions of consent, maybe distribution, but it's safe to say that the aggrieved party has been seriously hurt in some way greater than him just keeping a private file. And has a right to be upset.
|2 days 1 hour ago||We wanted him too. He was in||
We wanted him too. He was in demand. He won some big games. (EDIT: Remember, Alabama actually hired Mike Price, too. They didn't always get it right.)
He also lost some. He's a good coach, but as has been discussed, there are some weaknesses that all of his teams seem to have. They are sloppy. They are defensively average or worse. They don't develop players well. They don't accrue lots of elite talent.
And the results are visible: good teams, occasional contention for conference titles, dangerous offense, head-scratching losses every year. That's good for WVU. That's good for Arizona.
Even if a lot of the bad stuff hadn't happened to him, I don't think he would ever do better than that at Michigan. And that's too bad. But it's reality.
|2 days 2 hours ago||Pretty sure you meant that||
Pretty sure you meant that Hoke did a good job with the DL, since the OL was the primary catalyst of his failure in four years at Michigan. Which, yes, I agree.
|2 days 2 hours ago||My vision of RR was that he||
My vision of RR was that he could be for us what Chip Kelly was for Oregon and Urban Meyer was for Florida. Forward-thinking, killer instinct, etc. It did not happen at Michigan. There are a lot of reasons why, and knowing that Arizona would have destroyed Michigan on the field last year was certainly hard to take.
But I think RR has a ceiling. He appears to have hit it at Arizona. I wouldn't say that it is schematic, though there are a lot of pure run spread teams that are struggling this year; I think he just doesn't produce great players. Yeah, he'll snag the occasional Scobby or Lewan or Slaton, but a lot of coaches do that. As said, he doesn't develop players, and we saw here that he doesn't really recruit well.
He is a good fit for a place like WVU or Zona; they'll struggle occasionally and have some good years. I don't think he can run a top-line program.
|2 days 5 hours ago||Oh, and I totally agree that||
Oh, and I totally agree that not adding a QB was a mistake. Putting all of your eggs in one basket is dangerous; Hoke was at Michigan when Henson left before the 2001 season, he should have known that.
|2 days 5 hours ago||I suspect that moving Gardner||
I suspect that moving Gardner to receive was more an effort to put good athletes on the field, gambling on Denard staying healthy. It was a bit of a moonshot, and it didn't really work out, but they knew they could put DG back under center if Denard got hurt, which is what happened. I think the hope was that Bellomy would only ever have to come in for a play here or there if Denard got dinged on a hit.
In the event, it didn't work out. But I think the effort was worth the risk; Gallon was not known to be a big-game receiver going into the year, and large portions of Denard's success in 2011 were due to Junior Hemingway's ability to win jump balls. I think their hope was that DG would provide that in 2012, a key component of a non-RichRod offense that had Denard at QB.
And really the rest of the season was fine, as far as DG integrating into the offense. Many suggest that Michigan would have won at Nebraska had either Denard lasted or DG been the backup; I don't find that certain at all. Michigan was getting almost no offense whatsoever prior to the injury, and Al's track record on the road was terrible. I cannot believe that a team that always struggled on the road against teams like Iowa would suddenly pull it together late in Lincoln.
|2 days 6 hours ago||Neither of them smoke.||
Neither of them smoke.
|2 days 8 hours ago||Maybe. But: 1. Nobody keeps||
Maybe. But: 1. Nobody keeps the foot to the gas in blowouts, and 2. Great offensive teams score anyway. Michigan is not a great offensive team.
|2 days 8 hours ago||After last year and after||
After last year and after Utah it seemed pretty clear that we could hope for improvement, but that there was a pretty solid ceiling above which this team could not expect to ascend.
Now, we have comfortably beaten three teams that we should have comfortably beaten, and thumped one good team.
It's promising. But cruising through the B1G undefeated? I have serious doubts. Playoff-ready? I honestly don't think we have the athletes. Michigan was beating a bad Maryland defense only 6-0 at halftime; things just aren't there yet.
I'm hopeful that the rivalry games are winnable; I'm hopeful that a good bowl is in our future. But I don't see how this team won't lose at least once and probably twice more in the regular season. Maybe, maybe, we go into The Game with a chance for a share of the division title and a trip to Indy. Maybe. But that's the best I believe we can expect.
|3 days 7 hours ago||Season is still early. We'll||
Season is still early. We'll know more after the next two weeks. I expect OSU to round into fine form by the time they come to visit; I am trying very hard, and mostly unsuccessfully, to suppress ecstatic visions of what we will do to MSU in two weeks.
|3 days 7 hours ago||This is no surprise at all.||
This is no surprise at all. It's a significant game, worthy of a good time slot, and it's not going to be at night. This is an easy no-brainier.
Almost certainly on ABC, too. If that's decided after the weekend, I would guess that both teams losing could thwart that.
|3 days 8 hours ago||Honestly, this is just "meh."||
Honestly, this is just "meh." It's not ugly, it's not cool, it's not crazy. The logo is fine, but it's something I'd expect to see designed by a tourism board. It doesn't bother me, but it has no hook to it either.
FWIW while the image appears to be a scope, consistent with the "exploration/vision" theme of the design, Lewis & Clark most certainly did carry a significant quantity of arms with them and made use of them with some frequency.
|4 days 2 hours ago||Yeah. If Northwestern players||
Yeah. If Northwestern players were wearing, say, Oklahoma jerseys, they would be a top five team right now. Our defense is great, but Northwestern beat a good Duke team and absolutely throttled a Stanford team that is suddenly lighting up the Pac 12. They're good and have one of the best wins in the country.
I think it's a tossup. No way this should be a big line.
|4 days 3 hours ago||Woodson's epic interview:||
Woodson's epic interview: "Same old Jay."
Yep, same old Jay. And same old Charles Woodson.
|4 days 19 hours ago||What's the precedent for||
What's the precedent for this? When has it happened? Strong is not the first African American to coach in college football, much less other sports. When has a furor erupted before?
Do you think that, if he should be fired, it is because of race?
|4 days 20 hours ago||There might be a furor at a||
There might be a furor at a place like Michigan. I'm not at all sure that would happen at Texas. Not everybody sees the everything through the prism of grievance. The culture in Texas and, surprisingly to us, large swaths of the south overall, is more harmonious than what we are accustomed to in the North.
At any rate, I would be more inclined to lend credence to your theory if there were any precedent for it. So far that has just not occurred; the only time I can even remember such an issue coming up was when Ty Willingham was fired from Notre Dame, and that dissolved almost as quickly as it began.
|4 days 20 hours ago||Fair points, but money and||
Fair points, but money and winning are, respectively, powerful motives to overlook old issues.
|4 days 20 hours ago||Honestly, why should this||
Honestly, why should this matter? Was he hired on merit, or was he hired to check a box? If RichRod had been a different color, would he/should he have gotten a fourth year? Hoke, were he a minority, received a fifth?
Little would be worse for the prospect of increasing the number of African American coaches in college and the NFL than allowing an unwritten pressure to prevent schools from firing such coaches when the teams underperform. If such a pressure existed, a team would be reluctant to hire an African American, for fear that they would not be able to deal with underperformance if it occurred.
Look, college football has some unpleasant racial history in its past. But the fact that Bear Bryant had to get trounced by "Bam" Cunningham's USC team to start fielding black players hasn't prevented Alabama from getting the best African American recruits. Ole Miss is recruiting just fine and they have both a history of segregation and a mascot who represents the Confederacy.
Maybe coaches are just judged on the content of their coaching.
|4 days 20 hours ago||To be fair, it will take||
To be fair, it will take Riley time to develop the team the way he wants it.
But I don't think anybody really believed in him when he was hired and it is hard to see him succeeding now. Nebraska needs a Dantonio type that is excellent at developing players, since they can no longer recruit the way they used to when they won big under Osborne. I think Herman would have been a great hire for them, but they wanted none of it.
For what it's worth, I thought Florida's hire of Mcelwain was pretty weak, too, but so far things look pretty good over there.
|4 days 20 hours ago||Hoke really wouldn't have||
Hoke really wouldn't have been ok if he had just flipped the Rutgers and Maryland games to wins, would he? Of course not. It was already over--fans had bailed and so had recruits. It would scarcely have been less intense if the Shane Morris incident hadn't occurred; that mostly served to wreck DB, Hoke's last hope of protection.
Same thing wrecked Gene Chizik at Auburn. He had barely finished brushing off the confetti from his national title before the fans stopped even showing up at games. Strong is looking at the same revolt here.
|4 days 20 hours ago||To be fair, OSU had a 13-year||
To be fair, OSU had a 13-year transition in which they endured John Cooper, the ultimate coaching Manchurian Candidate.
|4 days 20 hours ago||They should go after Art||
They should go after Art Briles or maaaaaybe Gary Patterson. Briles produces. Yeah, his teams aren't great on defense--back up the bank truck and hire a great DC (except ours, we like ours). Hasn't he shown enough?
Both he and Patterson have taken tiny football also-rans that could hope to be no better than 4th or 5th in their own state and turned them into perennial national championship contenders. It doesn't get recognized enough how astonishing that is. Neither of these teams have any business being better than Texas at any time, and they OWN them right now.
|4 days 21 hours ago||Dantonio is, alas, a very||
Dantonio is, alas, a very good coach, but is he well-suited for Texas? Michigan State allowed him the time to develop his program and does not demand much from a coach as the head of a program; at Texas you're expected to charm the donors as well as produce a football team. Further, while Dantonio has improved his recruiting, recruiting great players has never been his strength; he gets his guys and coaches them up. That has not, in the past, been the Texas profile.
And in that state it never will be. Now, perhaps a coach can adapt--Urban Meyer's offense certainly handled top recruits just fine--but Texas is a place that demands success right away. Strong is practically gone, and he hasn't even coached a season and a half yet.
|4 days 21 hours ago||Never thought I'd feel||
Never thought I'd feel sympathy for Texas fans, and it's not like they don't have some pretty serious recent success to look back to, but I'm getting close here. What a trainwreck. We, of course, know how that feels.
It's easy to pile onto programs that are falling apart, popcorn in hand, but I genuinely think Strong has been dealt a bad hand here, even if he has played it poorly. What's most startling about this, if true, is that the player in question is a freshman--that's supposed to be one of "his" guys.
Really, Texas looked like things were improving after the Cal comeback, but they still haven't notched that W. The Saban/Chip talks will begin to accelerate now.
|4 days 21 hours ago||Remember how Colin Kaepernick||
Remember how Colin Kaepernick carved up the Packers under Harbaugh a couple of years ago?
It really is a tragedy that Gardner never got to play for Harbaugh. I believe he would've been great.
|5 days 20 hours ago||BYU has already significantly||
BYU has already significantly exceeded their offensive totals from last week, less than ten minutes in.
That it's after two drives and a mere seven points? Oh, yeah.
|5 days 20 hours ago||"Right now UConn just does||
"Right now UConn just does not have an answer for this BYU offense..."
Music, sweet music.
|6 days 2 hours ago||He did go on th record,||
He did go on th record, though, in the interview with Heiko. Heiko asked, he answered.
|6 days 7 hours ago||They won't skyrocket until||
They won't skyrocket until the game sells out, and right now they're not even close. Huge swaths of unsold tickets carpet the corners of the upper deck. It is far, far likelier that the game does not sell out at all and that prices begin dropping as anxious sellers look to unload tickets that will not move at face value.
When I travel somewhere distant I want to have tickets already arranged, since I'm banking a trip on attending the game, so I will buy ahead of time. But buying now, with thousands of tickets for sale at $60, is unwise. Especially since Minnie can barely beat MAC teams right now.
|6 days 7 hours ago||Yeah, I think this is a||
Yeah, I think this is a "rising tide lifts all boats" situation. Seth is helping create a larger market for tickets, because more people will think, "this is something I can do" and give it a shot. It was a revelation for me after high school that I had disposable income, a car, and time... And that an easy combination of those would allow me to watch UM-OSU in Columbus. "I can actually DO this," is the idea.
And this feature, which I love even though I'm not really the market for it, tells people that they can do that. People who rarely consider attending home games, or regular attenders who have never before considered a road trip to Happy Valley (one of the ones that got away for me, alas).
Tiqiq will benefit.
|1 week 1 day ago||My guess is that it is an||
My guess is that it is an intermittent feature. The market really didn't have much reason to move after UNLV, for example, so why invest time and energy in it? Games that are pretty far out take time to have market corrections.
I'm hopeful for a post this week.
|1 week 1 day ago||Worth noting that Joaquin is||
Worth noting that Joaquin is occurring in a relatively unpredictable timeframe. Some weather patterns are easier to predict than others.
This info courtesy of @RyanMaue, who is a meteorologist who specializes in long-term forecasts and focuses a lot on storms like these. He is a bit wonky, but he's a worthy follow if you like following severe weather. And he's a Michigan Grad and mitten ex-pat that I worked with at Meijer for a year before he did his grad work at FSU, so he will occasionally look at Michigan's weather.
|1 week 3 days ago||I will say this: the||
I will say this: the double-fake screen was a fun and effective play, but a strange play with a fake look that doesn't match any other look the team presents for the whole game is the one thing Al Borges was pretty good at in his time at Michigan. He loved to cook up unusual plays and install them every week. Some of them worked pretty well.
The critical difference is that Michigan executes everything else well and has a coherent offense apart from the funny stuff.
|1 week 3 days ago||Yes. It is great to be||
Yes. It is great to be excited about football again.
|1 week 3 days ago||Brady Hoke declined to wear a||
Brady Hoke declined to wear a set at Michigan because if he wore one Dave Brandon would use it to send in playcalls.
|1 week 3 days ago||It's possible, but there are||
It's possible, but there are too many narrow conditions to be met here. This is shooting the moon--if this happens AND that happens AND this team is upset AND that team exceeds expectations, etc. This, to me, is just a symptom of B1G teams not choking in very many should-win non-conference games. Nice, but should be unremarkable.
|1 week 3 days ago||Not likely. I checked on||
Not likely. I checked on Saturday, there are plenty of tickets available from the ticket office. Big swaths of the upper deck corners are unsold; this almost certainly won't sell out.
Dressing warm is good advice. The game is at night, and the temperature won't be mild. I was at the same game you were; the stadium itself is unspectacular but pleasant, and I really enjoyed it.
|1 week 3 days ago||Wolverine Pride also||
Wolverine Pride also mentioned this. It's a good suggestion; it neglects to mention that the fairgrounds are the only real tailgate location available. The tailgate scene near the Stadium is extremely scarce, and the few lots that even exist are limited to pass holders. This is an issue of some debate amongst the fanbase, but there just isn't the space for it nearby.
|1 week 3 days ago||Not true, actually. 94 takes||
Not true, actually. 94 takes you quite a bit out of your way to Milwaukee. One must take 90 for significant portions of the trip.
|1 week 4 days ago||"He has no idea that Charles||
"He has no idea that Charles Woodson can jump fifteen feet in the air..."
|1 week 4 days ago||My hope is that he grades out||
My hope is that he grades out fine; you can't tell much from isolated Red Zone plays. But he plays a position where athleticism is required (as opposed to, say, QB for the Patriots) and that physically cannot last forever.
|1 week 4 days ago||Worked for me. Woodson||
Worked for me. Woodson working for Oakland.
The pick is nice, but does anyone know how his performances are grading out over whole games? Some plays I seem him in (Red Zone channel, no specific watching) he looks a step slow.
Well, other plays. Not on that pick.
|1 week 4 days ago||Might have been Jim Hermann's||
Might have been Jim Hermann's finest moment after 1997, too. The defense ran Okie-type sets that looked nothing like the D sets from any other game and totally befuddled Kyle Orton. The score could have been much worse.
|1 week 4 days ago||This is a sea-change game in||
This is a sea-change game in the Pac 12, just titanic. Reminds me of Harbaugh's trouncing of USC in the "What's your deal" game, but even more astonishing. This changes the whole conference landscape.
From a public image perspective, yeah, this is really good for us.
But, uh, there's this committee that makes certain key choices about college football late in the season, and they look very favorably on teams that play good teams on the road, giving genuine credit for "good" losses... I'm not saying, I'm just saying. Michigan suddenly has a really good schedule.
|1 week 4 days ago||I'm hoping to go, despite the||
I'm hoping to go, despite the late start. Haven't bothered to get tickets yet, since the game isn't close to a sellout and there are plenty available. All in good time.
|1 week 4 days ago||Other big games the weekend||
Other big games the weekend of the MSU game:
USC at ND
If they both win out to that week, I think USC/ND is a lock. But UM-MSU has a shot, at least.
|1 week 4 days ago||If Northwestern wins up to||
If Northwestern wins up to then they will have two great wins and an impressive record; we will have wins over BYU and some scrubs. By ranking it might wind up being the most attractive top 25 matchup, but it's not that great. Oklahoma -Texas might be more interesting on a national level, among other games that feature at least one team that is oh-so-close to making it a great matchup.
A week like that is a prime week for one of Gameday's "alternate" locations, where they go to a lesser known spot. And, FWIW, I think it's awesome that they do that.
|1 week 5 days ago||Now, I'm as anxious as you||
Now, I'm as anxious as you are to see how Michigan plays at home against Michigan State, but let's not ignore the fact that Northwestern comes to Ann Arbor first and their resume belongs amongst the best in the country right now. Both Duke and Stanford have rebounded from ugly Northwestern games to post impressive wins; it may be that Northwestern, rather than lucking into ugly wins against bad teams, is genuinely good.
At least, their defense is. Our defense is as well. But Northwestern will be a tough game.
|1 week 5 days ago||Agree. That's the last time||
Agree. That's the last time Michigan looked this good.
|1 week 5 days ago||That's the ticket this year.||
That's the ticket this year. Running the football, game management, monster defense. Our neighbors to the south won that way for years; Lloyd wanted to win that way but couldn't execute it. Michigan can win a lot of games by being ok with the occasional punt.
I once had a commercial driving instructor give a good rule of thumb for driving large vehicles, in the context of left turns against traffic. It probably applies well here:
"If you THINK you can... DONT."
|1 week 5 days ago||I was hoping for more offense||
I was hoping for more offense in the second half, but either it is not quite good enough to produce when in complete cruise control (ok, no big deal) or it has trouble scoring when Harbaugh isn't unleashing the bags of tricks. Which is fine. I guess I just wish they could line up and plow through the DL on the ground regardless of the situation, but perhaps that will come in time.
Things looked so good in the first half that I can't possibly worry about it. That fake double-screen was beautiful. I will say this: people on Twitter griped that play designs were never that good under Hoke, but that is actually the sort of thing Borges was good at cooking up. He just didn't have a coherent offense to make those plays convincing, and the team could never execute properly the way they are right now.
I'll be surprised if we don't see looks like that again. I'm sure there were other plays that used those keys in the playbook, but since the score was out of hand, the plays weren't necessary.
|1 week 5 days ago||Exactly.||
|1 week 5 days ago||To be fair, Mangum has film||
To be fair, Mangum has film out now and I think he was a bit exposed as a freshman. There were plays that he missed. And, yeah, they're tired.
But it's still a quality team with real players and we just buried them. BYU might have played poorly, but Michigan sure helped, and even a significantly better performance by them is still pretty futile. They weren't even close to scoring.
|1 week 5 days ago||Lewis would have jailed that||
Lewis would have jailed that guy.
|1 week 5 days ago||Well then. No real surprise||
No real surprise here. We blasted them the same way. Stanford is not a comatose team; I'd expect them to win easily here, and they are.
|1 week 5 days ago||Yeah. One more TD for OSU and||
Yeah. One more TD for OSU and the rest is gravy; that first drive they put up on us doesn't look so outrageous anymore.
What's nice about this is that I wasn't sure that OSU wasn't headed for a 1-11 season after they played us; they really looked outmanned, and for all we know they could have been (still could be) completely awful all year long. Nothing is set in stone, but this game suggests that OSU has some real promise.
At least, on offense they do. Stanford is plowing them under up front, which one would expect given how our OL put them to the sword.
|1 week 5 days ago||Fine. Who on Michigan's||
Fine. Who on Michigan's offense would be an upgrade?
|1 week 5 days ago||I think they might be.||
I think they might be. McDonough is very good, and he seems to genuinely enjoy the sport. He has a good feel for when to express excitement, produces great calls of the best moments, and respects the viewer's intelligence.
Spielman may be a Buckeye but he's also a Lion, and he is both classy and insightful. He is one of the best at actually seeing what is really happening on the field and communicating that to the viewer, rather than just repeating catchphrases and platitudes.
I still like Fowler, but like others I think he's only decent at PbP, whereas on Gameday he was, possibly, the best studio anchor of all time. I like Herbstreit, too.
Lundquist is good, but he has lost his fastball. A lot of people liked his calls of the two Auburn miracles a couple years ago, but I thought they were subpar. Not bad, but not his best stuff. It very much reminds me of late Keith Jackson, who like Verne now was still good to listen to but didn't always catch everything as sharply as he had in the past. I do like Danielson more than most.
What I like about all of these guys is that they are good college football announcers; Dan Hicks on NBC is skilled and does a fine job on the Notre Dame games, but like Hammond before him he really seems to be a professional staff announced for NBC that happens to be assigned to football.
One thing that Fowler and Lundquist both have are top-notch production crews. The top CBS and ESPN games are so crisp on a regular basis that they are a pleasure to watch.
|1 week 6 days ago||Never happen, the B1G so far||
Never happen, the B1G so far has kept affiliate members limited to schools that would at least be plausible members from a school/academic standpoint. And though UMD joining would be lights-out awesome for me, it's just not in the same ballpark. Unfortunately.
|1 week 6 days ago||I think a huge plus to their||
I think a huge plus to their recruiting will be the small but fertile niches of western hockey that exist in places like California. Tempe isn't exactly close to LA or San Jose but it's a whole lot closer than anywhere else.
And as far as travel is concerned I don't think the slight improvement in proximity afforded by the Colorado schools makes much difference. Once you have to fly somewhere the destination isn't that important.
|1 week 6 days ago||Interesting. I suppose it||
Interesting. I suppose it fits the profile of a distance-travel conference with large universities, but ASU isn't exactly a unique place like Hopkins, either. This, along with the rumored "other program," would certainly make the schedule and the playoffs more sensible, though.
The biggest problem with B1G hockey by some stretch is that MSU and Wisconsin aren't even trying to be good right now, and Michigan is comatose for another year. Those are three of the top programs in college hockey history wildly underperforming; meanwhile, schools where hockey is the only major sport continue to surge.
Two extra schools won't fix that, but maybe some of this new blood can start making tournaments and prop up the old boys.
BTW, what's your USCHO handle?
|1 week 6 days ago||I really didn't want him to||
I really didn't want him to leave.
But if he spends the year with the Big Club, the wisdom of his choice will be unquestionable.
|1 week 6 days ago||Yeah, Joe Bolden has been||
Yeah, Joe Bolden has been getting serious playing time since his freshman year. It's unlikely that a switch is just magically going to flip--he is who he is at this point. Which, given the talent around him, seems to be enough for most games.
|2 weeks 5 hours ago||I liked how Harbaugh answered||
I liked how Harbaugh answered the question about this, per @chengelis (I think). He said that he would like to give an opinion on transfer restrictions but didn't want to now when he was a direct party to the issue. Classy and appropriate.
|2 weeks 5 hours ago||It's also possible that the||
It's also possible that the information on the wedding was added as a result of reading this thread--I don't recall that information being there earlier. Fits with the location.
It wouldn't speak well for the traffic levels of chatsports if a spike of readership linked from this thread on this site was notable enough to add a shout-out to the article. I'm sure this thread is driving clicks, but it can't be that many.
|2 weeks 6 hours ago||Good point. Don't think||
Good point. Don't think Twitter goes this nuts if, say, MSU's OC is in trouble.
|2 weeks 6 hours ago||Looks like a nice||
Looks like a nice ceremony.... But, man, look at Nick's face during his dance with his daughter... Terrifying.
|2 weeks 6 hours ago||I'm curious how this thread||
I'm curious how this thread is handled going forward. On one hand, we have a totally unsubstantiated rumor that has blown up on Twitter with no visible source.
On the other hand, we have a lot of chatter about a well-known and highly controversial character in our favorite sport at the center of a lot of heat. I mean, I'm no fan of Chatsports, but I think Bando was in the right mind to post this. It does, after all, interest the audience of the board. This is the sort of thing I'd expect to come across here.
|2 weeks 6 hours ago||The Twitterverse is certainly||
The Twitterverse is certainly alive with this right now, but this is absolutely rumor and nothing else at the moment. Should probably have "rumor" in the title. And, uh, a Chatsports link isn't usually a reliable go-to (though it seems to be a pretty good summary of what is and isn't out there).
I'm pumping the brakes, personally.
But, man, if this is true... Social media gold. The LSUFreek action will be marvelous.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||Truth. Basically, every||
Truth. Basically, every successful coach is the subject of rumors every year. There are still rumors about Gruden every year, and it has taken a owner almost ten years of not being interested for the rumors to die down. Even Pete Carroll, who wasn't great in his first go-rounds in the NFL, got talked about every year until he left.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||Tellingly, the speculation is||
Tellingly, the speculation is all about money. No sources at all, just whether or not there is a financial offer that can't be refused.
I could see Harbaugh leaving someday, but not over money. There are enough well-to-do fans invested in him staying to match any offer (remember how plausible the $8 mil figure was? Still is). The issue is whether or not he decides he has unfinished NFL business left on the table and whether or not there is a "good situation."
And here the timing is crucial, because it's only one year. I highly doubt the NFL has any serious mind space yet. And that's good, because Indy, where he was Captain Comeback, and Andrew Luck, who he joyed to coach in college, would be very attractive. Like, Super Bowl next year attractive.
I doubt he'll leave before his first recruits graduate, but if he did, that's the kind of place he'd go.
|3 weeks 1 day ago||I'd forgotten about the poor,||
I'd forgotten about the poor, skewed wording of the question. My major issue with the poll is the idea that Mochigan's "official" maize should be or even could be darker than Iowa's. That's simply absurd.
|3 weeks 1 day ago||Brian hasn't run across me||
Brian hasn't run across me yet. I am AT BEST agnostic about the move. I don't believe the new "maize" accurately reflects the colors worn by the team in the heady days of the 90s/early 00s when many of us grew attached to the color schemes.
And, what do you know, I wrote about it.
But I must say that the popular opinion against me (along with my personal, distasteful first experience seeing a highlighter color on the hockey team in Green Bay after liking it fine on TV) has influenced me to at least wait and see in person before casting final judgment. But color me skeptical.
|3 weeks 1 day ago||When field turf was first||
When field turf was first installed, the "maize" was a decidedly orange-ish color that contrasted sharply with what the team actually wore. This was back in the Nike days, allegedly the time period this new "maize" dates back to. The contrast was embarrassing and ugly; I was glad that they lightened the colors. We'll see where things go now.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Yeah. Came up abruptly just||
Yeah. Came up abruptly just as Brian was talking about Spartan Bob. I think it's a WTKA stream error.
|3 weeks 3 days ago||Agree. This says, basically,||
Agree. This says, basically, that Shane could have two good years of football left. Time to improve; time to earn the starting job. Time to achieve, if he chooses.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||And big, too. I saw the score||
And big, too. I saw the score and thought it was a mistake.
Hard to believe it's been since 1988... but then, it's not hard to believe at all.
Anyone know if EMU has the smallest dedicated fanbase of any FBS school? It has to be close. Losing team, in the shadow of major programs...
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Basically agree here, but||
Basically agree here, but worth remembering that 7 points came on a punt return (and returns helped set up good field position at other times), so the offense only scored 21.
Freeman and Brooks-James combined netted 27 carries for 112 yards, though. That's not disastrous but it is far below Oregon's usual production, and that hurt the entire offense.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Close game, but not really a||
Close game, but not really a good game. Oh well.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||This would be way up there in||
This would be way up there in the all time Sparty No! choke hall of fame.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Touche||
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Amazing that all of these MSU||
Amazing that all of these MSU students won 150 tickets playing skee-ball and all spent it on those foam hats at the same time.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||This will probably have to||
This will probably have to start with the NFL, but it really is kind of absurd that a game that can turn on a ball being placed one inch in any direction still judges those inches by visual estimation. I'm not trying to pick on officials, who do the best they can, but these are crucial issues.
The technology to remedy this either already exists or is very close to existing; wire footballs with a couple of ultra-light sensors, make a full digital read of the field, and make spots exact. Doesn't have to happen for every spot, but a computerized spot review should be available for first downs, touchdowns, and the odd loose-ball boundary call at least.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||OK, this is pretty||
OK, this is pretty straightforward: MSU is winning because they are beating Oregon at the LOS. Oregon always, always, always struggles when quality DLs beat them up front.
I believe this is partially a systemic problem; Kelly and Helfrich opt for somewhat lighter, mobile OLs that are very good at getting creases and moving to the second level on zone plays. Where it works, it is devastating--they get holes and they get big plays.
But they have consistently shown weakness against dominant defensive lines. Auburn with Nick Fairley, LSU, OSU, etc. These are all DLs that are great. And they expose a specific weakness in Oregon, a team that cannot function without the zone runs and the zone reads that are their staple. It's not that the lines aren't good--they are--but they are ill-suited for the top 1% of defensive lines. Yes, they have passing plays, too, but their passing game is only decent without the running game.
This is most notable because the shotgun spread attack as it is fancied does not require the lighter, mobile OLs that Oregon uses; Urban Meyer, able to recruit top-end linemen at Florida and Ohio State, has won with full-sized lines. Lines that aren't overpowered in the biggest games.
MSU, as other teams before, is thwarting Oregon's key action. And their D has held them to 14 points, so far.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Kelly might be available||
Kelly might be available after this year. Or he might win a Super Bowl. Hard to tell. But if he struggles at all, teams like Texas will come after him big time.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Yeah, that was weird. Refs||
Yeah, that was weird. Refs must've missed it.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Looks like it's a white-out;||
Looks like it's a white-out; they did this last year as well, apparently.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||And in the CWCA (Coaches We||
And in the CWCA (Coaches We Coulda Had) Bowl LSU leads 14-3 with :43 left in the half.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Meanwhile Oregon is in this.||
Meanwhile Oregon is in this. For a game with these teams, it's curiously strange.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Still, 20? That's a lot.||
Still, 20? That's a lot.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Wow. ECU... wow. What a way||
Wow. ECU... wow. What a way to lose.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Yeah. But their offense uses||
Yeah. But their offense uses the threat of running and their wins tend to involve piling on from ahead.
Those times they're trailing theyve usually been shut down all game.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||I don't think they're that||
I don't think they're that bad, actually. They've worn far worse. The bronze color they're using is a bit quirky but at the very least it has something to do with the team nickname, unlike a number of other uniform gimmicks.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||ECU is a decent team and||
ECU is a decent team and Florida is not a favorite in the conference; this doesn't look great for the SEC but given the events of the day it barely even registers if it's a close win. If Florida manages to choke this away it looks pretty bad, though.
ECU getting the ball with one TO and 2 minutes left.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||BYU has been good for a||
BYU has been good for a while. Don't forget that Texas, going through a swoon similar to ours, has been absolutely destroyed by this BYU team twice. Fans take the game for granted at our own risk.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Totally wrong. Defenders seem||
Totally wrong. Defenders seem to be catching plenty of these passes.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Hadn't thought about that,||
Hadn't thought about that, but definitely some similarities. Good eye.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Wow. What a win for OU. Epic||
Wow. What a win for OU. Epic game.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||It's nuts because college||
It's nuts because college football is awesome.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Refs made a good no-call on||
Refs made a good no-call on that possible late hit, btw. Didn't make an unheard whistle the key moment of OT1.
|3 weeks 4 days ago||Notice to those who like the||
Notice to those who like the sport & have interest in going to stadiums for non-Michigan games: when Tennessee is good, Neyland is an awesome experience. Big. Loud. Nice folks. Cumberland Ave before game time is great. It's a doable drive--worth the trip on a Michigan off week.
|3 weeks 5 days ago||My full thoughts on maize||
My full thoughts on maize tone are public record. http://mgoblog.com/diaries/what-was-and-will-be-maize-pics
|3 weeks 5 days ago||The maize in the unis is not||
The maize in the unis is not "back to" anything. Michigan football has not worn a color of maize this dark in the 35 years I have been alive. It is as dark as Iowa or darker. This is both unprecedented and a serious downgrade.
Everything else looked fine. But Michigan should not be wearing school bus yellow.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||I re-read the OP just to make||
I re-read the OP just to make sure, but it in no way suggests that direct comparisons can be drawn between this team and the Michigan teams of the 80s and 90s. Perhaps you aren't asserting that, either, but this reads to me as a rebuke.
As far as I can tell the OP is just giving the numbers. And they aren't that great, though anyone who finds the numbers more concerning for our conference chances than a certain football game last night is missing the forest for the trees.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||I started the thread about||
I started the thread about this Thursday night, where my conclusion conceded a poor route (though I did not grasp how poor) but laid virtually all blame on Rudock. This post, combined with Harbaigh's comments that assign a good portion of blame to the route, is persuasive. Rudock still should have backed off, because he's watching the corner make his break; but the route is worse than I thought. Perry's juke was very halfhearted--the sort of juke one makes when one is making a Quick move, not when one wants the defender to go the wrong way.
Re: the Isaac issue. We know he would have been open, but it is apparent that neither he nor Rudock nor the coaches considered him to be a serious option pre-snap. Motioning him out does change the look for the D, and my guess is that he is the fourth read (thus a fly route getting him somewhere where he can be useful to a QB who is running for his life), but nobody had any intention of checking to him.
That kind of check requires serious chemistry between QB and receiver, something we know Rudock hasn't had time to gain with the primary wideouts, much less a part-time RB. Given the pre-snap read, there was no reason to change anyway. Some of these things take time.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||We muttered about this when||
We muttered about this when the good classes were landing, too, but it was quiet muttering because we hadn't jumped ship on Hoke yet. Pretty obvious that it was an issue, though--Hoke did get the occasional fast receiver (Chesson, allegedly Drake Harris) but not very many of them.
The issue isn't speed per se; whenever a B1G team plays an ESS EEEE SEEE team it is supposed that it is a brawn vs speed matchup, and that is a big oversimplification. The issue is explosive playmaking, which Michigan doesn't have right now. Speed is a big component of that, but only a component.
When Michigan's offense has been stacked with playmakers, the "speed" comments are still there because people don't think for themselves, but the facts don't back it up. People weren't exactly marveling at Michigan's team speed in 2004, for example, but that team had guys like Braylon Edwards and Steve Breaston outrunning big-time defenses into the endzone. In 2006 we had Breaston, Arrington, and Manningham--all of them faster than USC's Dwayne Jarrett, but USC was "the speed team." (What about defense? Leon Hall might've been too slow for USC but he was fast enough to be a vital NFL cornerback. Eh.)
All that said, you are correct here: Michigan doesn't have much speed, because it doesn't have much playmaking talent. Hoke seemed satisfied if there were one or two guys that were fast on offense. What's perverse about this is that pro-style teams that succeed in college today, like Bama, have tons of explosive guys on the roster; and Bo's last gift to the program was a roster that included Jon Vaughn, Derrick Alexander, and Desmond Howard. The Michigan teams of the 90s and early 00s that Hoke was emulating had explosion all over the roster.
|4 weeks 4 days ago||That happens in two-minute||
That happens in two-minute offenses. Actually, Purdue has been running quite a bit, (top runner has 10 carries for 51) and a number of their passes are run looks where the ball has moved forward in the air.
|4 weeks 4 days ago||#confessyourunpopularopinion||
[peeks head up, looks around nervously, speaks in a hushed voice] I kind of like what Purdue is doing on offense.
|4 weeks 4 days ago||Yes. This is dumb. It's the||
Yes. This is dumb. It's the first game of the season. Two years ago I sprained my shoulder from patting myself on my back because MSU's offense couldn't pick a QB and looked like hot garbage with the guy they eventually settled on (Connor Cook, as it happens) in a game at home against Western while we were eviscerating Notre Dame with mad genius Al Borges and Devin "Vince Young the sequel" Gardner. I was rubbing my hands together with glee picturing how the game in East Lansing would look that year.
How did it turn out? Oh, yeah.
MSU will be fine, unfortunately. Try not to forget very recent history when considering whether or not to pronounce someone dead.
|4 weeks 5 days ago||Wrong. The camera is||
Wrong. The camera is deceptive in this instance--it looks close here, but the angle from the end zone shows it better. The ball is not only beyond Darboh but, crucially, several feet inside of him. He was nowhere near it.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||He's not Chad Pennington; his||
He's not Chad Pennington; his arm is decent.
But I believe you are correct. On long throws he rears up and heaves, using far more muscle effort just to propel the ball than he does on short throws. It's just plain harder to throw accurately that way.
Doesn't mean he's bad, just that he is limited.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||I like it, only for the first||
I like it, only for the first game of the season, only on the road. Of course, my occupation being what it is, Saturday nights are not great gobs of free time for me. Having the early game, especially in a year when Michigan is a curiosity but not a power, seems to strike the right balance. We're hyped and ready, the season is here, let's get it going.
Plus: two extra days to diagnose and correct issues for next week.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Ok, so throughout last night||
Ok, so throughout last night and today many of us have yearned for something more in the offensive gameplan. Not that it was bad, just that we could include more. Peppers or different play options, that sort of thing.
I think that may be coming. The staff appears to be focused on getting the team comfortable with the base concepts on offense and defense and doing them well. While this is still a "pro-style" run-first offense, everybody is learning new vocabulary and new reads and different plays. Similarly, on defense, Peppers still has work to do to maximize his talent, possibly precluding the use of him on offense early. All of this is a stark contrast from the Al Borges mad genius concept of inventing new plays out of whole cloth every week to confuse both opponents and his own team.
I believe this because Harbaugh (admittedly with Greg Roman) has shown that he is capable of using extensive pre-snap movement, pistol formations, and other intriguing concepts both in the NFL and at Stanford. That stuff wasn't visible here, and I believe that is because the first priority is to do the primary stuff right. The crazy stuff comes later.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||He got two carries in the||
He got two carries in the first half. It wasn't really his fault, but he didn't get anywhere. He's just been beaten. I'm disappointed about it--he's a five-star and has shown glimmers of real promise--but he has had opportunities to win the job and has not done so. The other guys are better right now.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||I agree, the second was||
I agree, the second was tougher. The first was open by a mile, and I don't think Chesson was really letting up either. Granted, Rudock might have been worried that a safety might be able to get there, but he just plain threw it too far.
And, if you watch the highlight, the ball was thrown at a pretty low trajectory; not a floater that the wind could've had a huge effect on, though I'm sure it helped. A real disappointing miss.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Uh, yeah, the point of the||
The idea of the post was to analyze the play and demonstrate which player deserved primary responsibility for the failure, and that player is Jake Rudock. The last sentence was the conclusion. You know, the answer.
Perry wasn't supposed to go any further downfield--it was a timing route designed for a four-yard gain. More distance keeps Rudock waiting in the pocket for a beat longer.
Your percentage seems pretty good.
EDIT: You weren't being mean, but my response here sounds snarky, which I hadn't intended. Sorry. My response is intended to be good-natured, not mean.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||It was definitely a great||
It was definitely a great play. However, the coverage was visibly good, and I think Rudock should have gone to a second read. When DG was intercepted on the 2-point conversion against OSU in '13, the defense did a great job covering the play Michigan ran; that did not stop us from lamenting that the play never should have been re-called after the TO.
This post is mostly to clarify, since there are some people claiming that Perry is at fault for the third interception.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Or, you know, the wideout||
Or, you know, the wideout near the sideline (can't catch the number) that has ten yards of space. We've called that play before; would have been an easy five yards.
Oh well. Perry was the primary read; he should have gone to the second option.
EDIT: That "wideout" was Isaac, who you were talking about. That does mean that it's harder to target him--A QB won't have the same "I stare you down when I'm going to you" rapport with the RBs, but the point remains. And my response here is mildly superfluous.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||FTR I think people are||
FTR I think people are overdoing it in harshness toward Rudock; suggestions that Morris should play, while uncommon, are out there, and I think that's ridiculous. Rudock has obviously earned the starting job, and there were a number of times where he both made the correct read and made a good throw. The inaccurate throws were the second pick and the bombs, which appear to be difficult for him. He rarely ever completely biffed a throw, and I think he'll make better decisions as he continues to get experience in this system.
He'll be fine. Perry will be fine, too. I anticipate a lot of growth in this offense. But let's not kid ourselves about the interception here.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Attempt a direct vine embed|
|4 weeks 6 days ago||No matter how many times you||
No matter how many times you say this, no matter how many caps or exclamation points you use, you are still 100% dead wrong.
The moment before Rudock winds up to throw the ball, Perry has already made his break to the sideline and begun running in that direction. It is a quick out--he runs forward, feints a stop or inside break, and breaks outside. He runs toward the sideline, maintaining his relationship just past the line to gain.
And while the route he ran is a bit sloppy, he ran the route as it was designed. And Rudock saw him make the break. And he threw the ball to exactly the place that Perry was running to--it is headed directly for Perry's hands. The only possible way Perry can prevent the pick is by running back toward the line of scrimmage, which would be stupid given the distance needed and virtually impossible given the timing and his momentum.
Rudock saw Perry break, he threw to where Perry was going, and he failed to recognize the defender.
Perry was fine. Rudock will be ok. You need to sit.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||I don't know that we have to||
I don't know that we have to go that far back, but I agree about the play calling.
Let's be cautious here: some of our opinions are naturally reactions against hard feelings from the failures of previous years.
But I remember being mad about play calls from the beginning of the Borges era. And that never really ceased in the Hoke era, with the results to back that up.
All that said, I had zero complaints about the way the game was called. At no time did one feel that the team was leaving yards on the table; of course, they called frequent quick passes to the receivers that turned into yards, which we've felt is a big deal. Also, it didn't seem like the calls were asking too much of the players, the way Borges would. Yeah, the plays sometimes failed, but that's football.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Let's not kid ourselves; it||
Let's not kid ourselves; it struggled because the OL wasn't playing that well. No push & few holes. And the passing game DID take advantage of Utah stuffing the box with those quick passes to the wideouts that kept getting yards.
A dynamite passing game does loosen things up but a good running game just plain gets yards, and Michigan did not.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||They're a good team, and the||
They're a good team, and the way they used misdirection and motion was quite good. Sometimes offenses are just good; this one did all that and scored 17 points. Not mad.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Coaching and misc stuff,||
Coaching and misc stuff, right?
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Not seeing where he is responsible for the second pick at all.||
Not seeing where he is responsible for the second pick at all.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Felt nothing like last year||
Felt nothing like last year to me. The two-minute drive was unlike any in the Hoke era. The team played pretty well in many respects on the road, virtually unknown in the Hoke era. There's some good stuff here.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||That last drive, too. Yeah,||
That last drive, too. Yeah, it wasn't enough, but Michigan wasn't remotely capable of such a drive at any time last year. And a drive that time efficient? Never in the Hoke era.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Ok, people are saying 2 of||
Ok, people are saying 2 of the picks are on Perry. Multiple people.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Love your handle. Just sailed||
Love your handle. Just sailed past the Miner last week.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Starting to remember why I||
Starting to remember why I don't read these threads. Not much to be done about it, but they don't exactly live up to the blog's otherwise pretty strong standard of intelligent discussion.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Don't think anyone's allowed||
Don't think anyone's allowed to be this rational after a loss. But I have to believe that you're right. And I believe the coaches can fix some of these problems that do exist.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||Looked that way to me. Not sure this is a "hot take" at all.||
Looked that way to me. Not sure this is a "hot take" at all.
|4 weeks 6 days ago||There were some flaws, and||
There were some flaws, and others will dissect them. There are some strengths.
|5 weeks 1 day ago||I find this likely, but I'm||
I find this likely, but I'm still hopeful for a win.
But you have a point: I expect this team to make vast gains in quality throughout the season. There is, surely, still much work to be done... And I think a lot of it happens during the year.
|5 weeks 1 day ago||I'm drinking some Koolaid||
I'm drinking some Koolaid here but whether the team enters with two losses or five I give Harbaugh a great shot against OSU this year. The game is at home. The team has proven it can play OSU strong. Jabrill Peppers allows the D to match up surprisingly not-terribly against OSU's still impressive offense. And OSU can talk a good game but this is right after their titanic MSU matchup, so there is some potential for mild focus issues.
Doesn't mean Michigan wins, but I think they can be right there. If one middling guy (say, Jehu Chesson or Channing Stribling, either of which is not likely but certainly plausible) plays the game of his life, Michigan can have enough.
Hey, look, my tongue is a funny color.
|5 weeks 1 day ago||My list is smaller than I||
My list is smaller than I would like, but in my defense I made some pretty massive trips to non-Michigan games in my peak traveling years and felt that I needed some weekends at home to watch games on the 4 TV satellite setup I invested in. My Michigan list as I remember it:
1999, 2001 MSU
My big holes are Wisconsin and Penn State, trips I wanted to make but could not prior to leaving Michigan. I have a much larger resume of college football venues that I attended on non-home weekends, and a huge list of hockey games (watching those on tv isn't the same at all) as well.
|5 weeks 1 day ago||Some of those teams were||
Some of those teams were stacked. Lloyd did hold them back offensively. But things go deeper than that. 01 and 02, for instance, did not have close to that kind of talent. 2000 had serious defensive problems. 2003 is the real disappointment for me, relative to talent.
|5 weeks 1 day ago||Nice stats, do you have a||
Nice stats, do you have a source?
|5 weeks 1 day ago||The Illinois loss was the||
The Illinois loss was the flukiest loss I've ever seen Michigan lose. Remember, Anthony Thomas was a bit banged up, and Carr decided to pull him out of the game with a lot of time left to preserve his health--a defensible decision with a 20-point lead. By the time things had gone to pieces, he was showered and unable to return.
|5 weeks 1 day ago||Don't think the '96 team was||
Don't think the '96 team was ever that close. It was, in the non-OL positions, the least talented offensive team Carr ever coached; the only rival in that department was the 2001 team, which was measurably superior in most statistics. Yeah, we think fondly of many of those players from '97 (and we should, but let's not pretend '97 was an offensive powerhouse either), but this was not that season. In '96 you had Young Tai Streets and Russell Shaw flanking Young Clarence Williams and Chris Howard. None of these players even rank in the top four of Michigan players at their positions in the Lloyd Carr era. At QB it was mostly Scott Driesbach until Not '97 Brian Griese took over late. The team just didn't have enough offense to win that many games. But it did set up the '97 team well.
|5 weeks 2 days 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.
|5 weeks 4 days 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.
|5 weeks 6 days 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.
|5 weeks 6 days 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.
|6 weeks 1 day 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.
|6 weeks 1 day 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.
|6 weeks 1 day 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 weeks 1 day 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 weeks 1 day 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 weeks 2 days 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 weeks 2 days ago||I apparently remember the Les||
Edit. Saw wrong response, sorry.
|6 weeks 2 days 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 weeks 2 days 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 weeks 2 days 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 weeks 2 days 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 weeks 2 days 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 weeks 2 days 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 weeks 2 days 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 weeks 2 days ago||Drove past Utah? Past Salt||
Drove past Utah? Past Salt Lake City? Because Utah is not exactly a flat state.
|6 weeks 2 days 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.
|6 weeks 4 days 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.
|6 weeks 4 days 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.
|6 weeks 4 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.
|6 weeks 5 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.
|6 weeks 5 days ago||That's a good point about Rudock, hadn't realized it.||
That's a good point about Rudock, hadn't realized it.
|6 weeks 5 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.
|6 weeks 5 days ago||Yay procrastination fodder1.||
Yay procrastination fodder
|6 weeks 5 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.
|6 weeks 5 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.
|6 weeks 5 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.
|6 weeks 5 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.
|9 weeks 1 day ago||How do you know this if you||
How do you know this if you haven't watched a single thing in five years?
|9 weeks 1 day 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.
|9 weeks 1 day 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.
|9 weeks 2 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.
|9 weeks 2 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.
|9 weeks 2 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.
|9 weeks 2 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.
|9 weeks 2 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.
|9 weeks 2 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.
|9 weeks 2 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.
|9 weeks 2 days ago||Avila just quoted saying he||
Avila just quoted saying he "believes we can win this year."
|11 weeks 3 days 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.
|13 weeks 8 hours ago||I'm sold. I want to see this||
I'm sold. I want to see this game now.
|13 weeks 1 day 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.
|13 weeks 1 day 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.
|17 weeks 5 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.
|17 weeks 6 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.
|18 weeks 2 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.
|18 weeks 4 days 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.
|18 weeks 5 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.
|19 weeks 3 days 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.
|19 weeks 5 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.
|19 weeks 6 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.
|20 weeks 2 hours 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.