maybe i should have had greg howard write the brandon obit.
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|3 hours 34 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.
|3 hours 42 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.
|3 days 16 hours 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.
|4 days 15 hours 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.
|4 days 15 hours 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.
|4 days 16 hours 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.
|6 days 14 hours 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.
|1 week 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.
|1 week 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.
|1 week 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.
|1 week 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.
|1 week 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.
|1 week 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.
|1 week 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.
|2 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.
|2 weeks 2 days ago||He loves college hockey.||
He loves college hockey. Pumps it year-round. That counts for a lot.
|2 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.
|2 weeks 5 days ago||It's gone national in certain||
It's gone national in certain political circles, FWIW.
|2 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.
|2 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.
|2 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.
|2 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.
|2 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.
|2 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.
|3 weeks 3 hours 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.
|3 weeks 13 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.
|3 weeks 2 days 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).
|4 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.
|4 weeks 2 days ago||Of course if Trey Burke and||
Of course if Trey Burke and THJ were still in school...
|4 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.