The Whine

The Whine

Submitted by Mmanfromthea2 on November 30th, 2010 at 12:02 AM

This is my first journal entry. Never thought I'd see a reason to do so. Brian's and company, as well as large portion of the casual/everyday posters had been enough for me. I really didn't  then, or probaby, now,have anything that would bring anything new or better written. Now, knowing my opinion  is just that, my opinion, I feel compelled to hunt and peck this entry.

Why....why would any sane fan of this great team even entertain the idea of a coaching change? I don't need to recount everything you already know. Plain and simple when we hired R.R we hired a new era. I've watched this TEAM for 40 yrs. I know what a Michigan man is. Michigan men don't say big blue  and thet don't whine like buckeyes when for the first time since I was a young  boy we don't get our nine  wins every season -- nine being a give or take sorta thing. I'm not gonna go research the #'s but i believe I was 12 the last time we didn't make a bowl. Now two years and we're back. But i still hear this whine.

If I could justify any of the numerous reasons, maybe just one, this entry would never be made. I see the same #'s, opinions, polls and content that you do; and as hard as I've tried to stay off the boards I cannot. Michigan is MICHIGAN for a reason. We are truly the leaders and the best. Sometimes "leading" can be painful. When these kid have had a chance...a fair shot at showing their talent and heart, we will have, as you've already seen, the most dynamic point scoring machine this league has ever seen. Denard now with Devin in the wings. What else do you want ? Everyone sans S.S is back. But still this whine.

KIDS who shouldn't even see playing time for two years are thrown into the Big 10 and I hear whine. Are you kidding me ! ? The talent is there and the heart is as big as I've seen. Give these kids a chance, a fair shot.  Is a year too much ? Practices before the 28th, the bowl game, off season...We'll have a decent D next year. R.R and company have had nooooo luck. None. I read it in here somewhere; no special teams, no defense and we manage 7-5. If you were told preseason of the injury plague that would be our defense this year; would you have bet on 7-5 ? I wouldn't have. 

I know in my heart and soul he needs only 2011 to make his case. By 2012 we'll be a BCS contender. We have the chance to witness something special, Something new and ahead of the curve -- the Big 10 has never seen what they'll see once these guys grow up. You don't think he "fits" or isn't a Michigan man; that's on you. I want to see what I've always seen at the Big House: a team other teams are afraid of. A team that dominates and executes and does it with integrity and class. You think Tress would have suspended a key player prior to this game ?

No more whine. The pain is over you just don't know it yet. "Coaching changes yes....Regime change ? Naw baby naw.....D.B is laughing at all R.R haters and those quick to squeeze the trigger. He know's......I know he knows. But I still had to hunt and peck....and I feel better ;-)

                                                         GO BLUUUUUUE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lost Letterman on Harbaugh at Stanford and Michigan temptation

Lost Letterman on Harbaugh at Stanford and Michigan temptation

Submitted by yossarians tree on November 29th, 2010 at 11:19 PM

Much new here (at least to me).

And please Jaysus H. Christo don't bite my head off if this has been already posted. I don't live here. I'm just a visitor.

http://www.lostlettermen.com/jim-weber-column-answering-the-big-questio…

Hard to Disagree with Both "Sides"

Hard to Disagree with Both "Sides"

Submitted by snoopblue on November 29th, 2010 at 10:28 PM

Disclaimer: This is my opinion. And for the record, because the decision to keep or fire Rich Rodriguez is completely out of my hands, I no longer have an opinion on the subject. I trust the people in charge and will go with whatever decision they make. Unlike most of these other diaries, this has no statistics. They just aren't my thing. I warn you, this is long. It is basically my rationale for being rational. Take it for what it is worth... Thanks.

 

After the Ohio State beatdown, I was angry and wanted RR fired. Sunday I was too angry about the Wiki Leaks guy so I cooled down a little bit. On Monday, after seeing Denard Robinson win the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year award, I've cooled down significantly and am looking at things more rationally, but not delusionally by any means.

Rich Rodriguez has done a terrible job coaching this team his first three years. When his WVU DC wasn't coming, he should have kept Ron English because he doesn't know shit about defense and/or the Big Ten. Ron English wasn't the greatest DC, but he was young, had energy and the respect of the kids that we had. RR should have adjusted his offense to Threet's talents, but he either didn't know how or was too stubborn. Then comes Tate, played well but he was a Freshman - what did you expect? Then Denard played flat out amazing but still he was a first year starter (Who won Big Ten OPOY). The defense? Can't honestly say Greg or Shafer are terrible coordinators or RR is a moron for forcing a system and staff upon them (or both). Either way, the entire coaching has failed when it comes to tackling. Every football player needs to know how to tackle with proper form. Offense on turnovers, special teams, and obviously defense. That is a fundamental. RR needs to give up on his defense philosophy and fire his friend Tony Gibson. On special teams, the kicking game is partly RR's fault, but Gibbons was a bust. Hagerup is great. Poor tackling on returns - that is mostly on Tony Gibson and partly on the other coaches for not teaching this fundamental football move. I don't know if they break down special teams film to look at teams blocking schemes on special teams, but uh, it didn't look like it. The injuries in 2010 really hurt, especially on defense and in our run game. Red zone turnovers by a first year starter at QB really killed us in some of those games, too.

 

It's a real conundrum we are in. Fire him and somewhat start over with a new guy, although I think the transition wouldn't be as bad as 2008 with a coach that isn't as stubborn as RR. Or say that for the first time, we have a returning QB that has proved he is electric. A stable of great WRs and RBs, many who are upperclassmen. Solid OL. Solid incoming recruits. Defense returning from an injury plagued year with many young players that had on the job training and game experience that will have an entire new staff running their own that is actually effective in defending Big Ten offenses (that is a MUST if RR stays). If RR can't handle an autonomous defense, then he is not all in for Michigan and should be fired. You want to build the best program in America right? Then bring in the best Defensive Coordinator and Staff you can find and let them do it their way, the same way you do it with your offense.

I pity David Brandon for having to make this decision. It basically makes or breaks his legacy as an AD. (And could have an impact on his political future, who knows.) Fans, media and former players all calling for the coach's head. Does he succumb to their demands? Does he see what I stated above and say "One More Year?" If he gives him another year and we have great season in 2011, he is a genius. T shirts will be made, "Patience is a virtue? No - David Brandon is patience." If we flop, he is a chump with no credibility.

 

In 2008 when Rich Rodriguez was hired, there were people who didn't like him. 3-9? More people didn't like him. First NCAA violations in program history? More. 5-7? More. 7-5 with poundings by Big Ten's elite? Even more. And it's hard to argue against those people, it has not been pretty or fun by any means. And then there are the people who stood by the coach no matter what, because he was the Michigan coach. As long as they always pulled for Michigan to win, these groups are the same - just passionate Michigan fans with strong opinions. And today, there is a supposed divide amongst the Michigan faithful. FIRE HIM NOW and WAIT AND SEE. These groups are also one in the same - one views the glass half full, the other half empty. The WAIT AND SEE group is no doubt angry with the way this coach has mismanaged and poorly coached his way into a hole in the job of a lifetime and straight up dragged Michigan through the mud. With all the drama and losing the past couple years, they still ask for patience because they want to see where this thing goes when some stability is involved (minus the defensive coaches =)..) The FIRE HIM NOW group wants to...well..FIRE HIM NOW. And you can't really blame them for feeling this way after the past few seasons. At the same time, as much as they were saddened, angered and frustrated by watching the games we lost, they can't tell me that they weren't thrilled watching Denard Robinson go apeshit on Notre Dame or the defense coming through in 3OT against Illinois. I know you can argue that all the wins, yards and points came against lesser opponents, a back-up QB at ND and vs. UCONN, Bowling Green. You can argue that we played close games against bad teams. (We did, FCS UMASS 42-37 are you kidding me?) You can argue that we were not even close in any of our losses, and that most yards and points came in on clean-up duty defenses. Once again, you are probably right. You don't even have to argue about the defense. However, you can't argue against the fact that our offense has shown flashes of being unstoppable and that the defense was plagued by freak injuries that forced inexperienced players, young and old, to play in games they had no business seeing the field in. We are stuck between a rock and a hard place. If you want the coach to stay for one more year, you should be able to support him and still agree that he has done a horrendous job thus far and excuses about the cupboard being bare aren't applicable anymore. You should demand he stays away from the defense. If you want him fired now, ask yourself this question. If you could turn the page and take a peek as to what 2011 holds for Michigan Football with Rich Rodriguez, would you be curious enough to take a look? If you would, then maybe your mind isn't as made up as you thought it was.

A case for Cam Gordon

A case for Cam Gordon

Submitted by bluefrombirth on November 29th, 2010 at 10:14 PM

I think it's time to take a break from the endless coaching debate. There are individuals under the illusion that there is no one talented on this defense at all. To that I take objection, there are many players( besides Mike Martin) that i believe will be great. One of those players is Cam Gordon. While many of you may chuckle at this assertion, i sometimes wonder if we are watching the same games. I see a player that is making plays, but does make mistakes. I mean this is to be expected out of a freshmen position switch guy. Believe Cam is indicative of the defense in general, very talented, but prone to the mistakes of inexperience.

     I have previously stated my disdain for stats, I believe that stats often present logical fallacies. The numbers point to an outcome, but then are confounded by a different outcome altogether. However, because statistics are the coin of the realm I shall expose my coin purse ( pun intended ). All of my stats are compiled  by cfbstats.com .

I am using Cam Gordon as factoid, and for purposes i will be comparing him to Linebackers, most notably to OLB. This is do to the lack of comparable nomenclature to the position that he plays currently in the 335, and most common 3-4, 4-3 defenses ( I believe that his ultimate position will be OLB at some point anyways, he has the frame to grow into that position).

The consensus pick for best big ten linebacker is greg jones. So i took a look at Greg Jones' Freshmen year stats. http://www.cfbstats.com/2007/player/416/1009826/index.html now lets look at Cam Gordons http://www.cfbstats.com/2010/player/418/1024821/index.html Jones comes in with 78 tackles, and 4.5 sacks. While Cam Gordon comes in at 73 tackles, and 2 picks ( with 1 game left to play). Now lets look directly at the OLB position. According to Espn the number one OLB that will be drafted is Akeem ayers of UCLA. Let's take a look at his Freshmen numbers. http://www.cfbstats.com/2008/player/110/1008517/index.html he comes in with 43 tackles and 5 sacks. 

 With this data in hand, i would draw the following conclusion: For a freshmen season, Cam Gordon seems to be on par with the best at his position, and likewise if we only analyzed these players in their freshmen years under the lens of having no potential for growth, then might these players get the same aspersions cast against them that Cam Has? I believe the future for Mr. Gordon like this defense in general is bright, they are just a young team, and They are likely to get better. Is this a logical Fallacy? You be the judge, but the evidence is there to point out otherwise.

P.S. I forgot to mention that these players started all games of their freshmen seasons just like Cam Gordon.

MGoBoard: "'Should we keep Rodriguez?' 'Yes.'"

MGoBoard: "'Should we keep Rodriguez?' 'Yes.'"

Submitted by the_white_tiger on November 29th, 2010 at 9:57 PM

About five weeks ago, I took two polls after the loss to Penn State. The results were not too surprising, but I felt that it would be interesting to see what the board thinks after all of the ANGAR. Well there has been a large amount of ANGAR after the game on Saturday, so I conducted another poll. Admittedly, the loss was probably too fresh in our minds, but I was impatient, and I wanted to see if all of you really wanted to keep this guy. There have been several hundred responses to each survey, and I really appreciate everyone taking the time to do this.

The answer is yes, MGoBoard still wants Rich Rodriguez to coach Michigan again in 2011

After the Penn State game (with the assumption of a 7-5 record), I asked if Michigan should retain Rich Rodriguez as head coach.

Response: % of responses
Yes 88
No 8
I'm not sure 11

After the game this weekend, the responses were not quite as steadfast in their support of Rodriguez, but there is still a clear majority in favor of retaining Rodriguez. Apparently 7-5 looked better five weeks ago than it does now, and the way that the games were won or lost were probably not exactly what most of us had envisioned at that point, although nobody thought that Michigan would beat Wisconsin (88% thought that Michigan would lose) or Ohio State (85%).

Response: % of responses
Yes 55
No 32
I'm not sure 13

GERG is not as lucky as Rodriguez however. The responses to asking if Michigan should retain Greg Robinson weren't shocking.

Five weeks ago:

Response: % of responses
Yes 9
No 54
I'm not sure 37

Now:

Response: % of responses
Yes 4
No 84
I'm not sure 12

I think we're pretty clear on this. Needless to say, MGoBoard wants Greg Robinson to resign, retire, or be fired. I think the consensus is that Rich Rodriguez will need to completely overhaul his defensive coaching staff, starting at the top, make a good hire this time, and give the defensive coordinator free reign in personnel, strategic, and recruiting decisions. Greg Robinson has failed here (and it was not entirely his fault), but we're fed up with the performance on defense and we think it's time for a change.

The other four questions that I asked were pretty consistent in their responses, but yet again, there was less of a clear cut majority. Keep in mind that most of the responses in the previous polls were largely given with the assumption that Michigan would not beat Illinois and finish 6-6.

Has Michigan shown enough improvement in Rich Rodriguez's tenure?

Response: then now
Yes 30 38
No 70 48
I'm not sure    14

Can Michigan eventually succeed under Rodriguez?

Response: then now
Yes 72   68
No  7  14
I'm not sure  21  18

Would Michigan be better off with Rodriguez as head coach in 2011 than without?

Response: then now
Yes  87  58
No  13  26
I'm not sure    15

Take a guess: Will Michigan retain Rich Rodriguez as head coach?

Response: then now
Yes  80  65
No  15  22
I'm not sure  5  13

Well, there you have it. I would agree with the majority who want Rodriguez to have another year (personally I think that a coach should have more than three years to build a program and that it's hard to discount the progress that has occurred from 2008 to now), but I understand some of the perspectives of those who wish to have a change in coaching occur because it has been frustrating to seee the team perform so poorly.

A couple of interesting responses from some seemingly irrelevant questions from the earlier survey:

Question #5: If a coaching change is made, should it be done before or after the bowl game?

  • Before – 51%
  • After – 37%
  • I’m not sure – 12%

Question #8: Would Jim Harbaugh be the best candidate if Rodriguez is fired?

  • Yes – 48%
  • No – 19%
  • I’m not sure – 33%

There isn't really correlation between these two and any other of the questions, so there isn't really much to be gained other than just an answer to my curiosity, I suppose. By the way I don't think that this is a place to start a "'Jim Harbaugh is awesome!' 'No he's not!" flamewar (which are kind of annoying anyways)*

*new emphasis

There are countless other threads in which to debate the merits of Jim Harbaugh, and I wonder what the response would be now if I asked the same question, but it is irrelevant because as of now, Rich Rodriguez is our coach and devoting so much time debating the merits of a possible replacement coach if he is fired is potentially pointless.

Big Ten Network's Contracting Footprint

Big Ten Network's Contracting Footprint

Submitted by Edward Khil on November 29th, 2010 at 9:02 PM

Last week, my cable company here in Kansas City removed the Big Ten Network from its basic cable package.  This is in KC, by far the largest city near Lincoln, NE.  With the 'Huskers being one of the largest fanbases/alumni bases in the U.S., you would think cable companies would be adding the B10 Network, not removing it.

(Just thought we might need to talk about ANYTHING other than, you know.)

OT: Recruiting: Harbaugh

OT: Recruiting: Harbaugh

Submitted by Knappster on November 29th, 2010 at 8:33 PM

Anyone familiar with Harbaugh's recruiting?  As far as pipelines and areas where he focuses?  According to Rivals, he has the #5 and #7 linebackers committed!  One from NJ and one from GA.  Also has commits from Texas, Washington, Colorado, New York, Lousiana, Indiana, and more.  Does he really recruit that well nationwide?  And if so, is this in part due to his NFL ties?

TomVH - can you shed any light on him as a recruiter and what makes him so successful (other than winning)?

Let's Try to Be Realistic at This Junction...

Let's Try to Be Realistic at This Junction...

Submitted by Mhpangr on November 29th, 2010 at 8:27 PM

 

So reading some of the message board responses today, I came across this comment and felt I had to respond:

....but the people on this board who are defending RR more so than their University and its fans aren't real fans in my book.  "He won't have the arrogance and constant bashing by fans" etc.; this is bullshit.  Why don't you guys go follow RR over to whatever school he ends up at if he is fired! (I am in no way a Rich Rod hater. I believe whatever coach is here next year needs to compete for the Big Ten Title next year considering that we have so many returning contributors.

So assuming Harbaugh is hired... he must compete for a Big 10 championship against established teams in our division such as MSU and Nebraska?  This is also under the assumption that he gets ALL of his starters back (no transfers?) and no losses in the recruiting market?

You are also assuming the offense makes it back to a top 20 outfit (I'm giving you a little wiggle room) and he's as much a defensive genius as RR is on offense and he turns our D into something respectable at say around top 1/2 in the country? 

Oh yeah... and assuming Denard wants to stick around to keep making plays for us (or if Harbaugh will even let him stay at QB) - let's remember that Denard is not a clean passer and a switch to an OSU-type pro offense has not done wonders for the likes of Pryor (who most have said is not meeting expectations), who has more of a pro-style frame/arm than Denard.  

If Denard does stay, do we give Harbaugh flack if he DOESN'T implement a spread O?  I mean, what fraction of this website's contingent constantly rides RR for not "conforming to his players' skills" in 2008?  Your #1 and #3 running back recruits are also in danger because they do not fit the bill of Harbaugh's style of O.  Are we willing to lose them and not suffer a drop-off in talent?

If he DOESN'T compete for a Big10 championship next year, is he then on the hot seat for not meeting this expectation?  By firing RR, you then set a bar of expectation that by all accounts you MUST apply to the next person in line.  

In addition, do we just ignore all of Harbaugh's past indiscretions (DUIs, comments in the media, comments about UM academics) or do we constantly give him a hard time like some have done to RR?  

While I don't endorse a preference of whether to keep RR or hire Harbaugh (a case can be made for both and I don't know if I really mind either decision), comments like this are setting a major precedent for the successor.  Two sets of rules cannot be applied just because you think Harbaugh is a "Michigan Man".  

Reminder - Stanford has played ONE currently ranked team this year and lost handily by 21 (another spread O team similar to M's).  He also wasn't a success overnight over there, going 4-8, 5-7, and finally 8-5 in year 3.  This is eerily similar to what is going on now here at UM.  

So I think we should be cautious at anointing Jim Harbaugh as our Savior because it becomes dangerous when you stand back and look at where our program officially stands at this point.  Every transition has its speed bumps.