It's August and that means the return of my favorite fall sport. That's right, volleyball. While I haven't quite gotten to my season preview (should be one for volleyball and the soccers coming if next week goes as planned), stories are already hitting the news wire.
Today, the Big Ten released the Preseason Conference Poll and Preseason All Big Ten teams. Michigan, coming off a 27-10 regular season and #9 final national ranking, has been picked to finish 5th in the Big Ten (pdf) behind perennial favorite Penn State, Illinois, Minnesota, and Ohio State. This is pretty much on par with the final standings last year, where Michigan finished tied with Ohio State in 4th place.
Coach Rosen via MGoBlue:
"Preseason polls do not mean much," 12th-year head coach Mark Rosen said. "The conference is good enough right now that one through 11 is up for grabs. I really think that the Big Ten is the deepest it has ever been this year. We have a lot of work to do to live up to that finish, but I think that our team is up for it."
Along with the standings, Michigan also had two players named to the Preseason All Big Ten Team. Senior setter Lexi Zimmerman makes her 3rd consecutive Preseason All Big Ten Team, this time as a unanimous pick.
Joining Zimmerman on the Preseason All Big Ten Team is junior left side hitter Alex Hunt. Hunt makes her first appearance on the Preseason Team, and looks to be Michigan's biggest returning weapon after the graduation of Juliana Paz and Veronica Rood.
(Photos via MGoBlue)
Along with MGoBlog, I also typically read through Bless You Boys (a Tigers blog) on a daily basis. Recently, editor Kurt Mensching wrote his opinion on the way the Tigers are handling Rick Porcello.
For those of you who don't want to waste the time reading the whole article, he basically states that pitchers like Cliff Lee, Roy Halladay, and Zach Greinke all had to spend substantial time in the minors before they were able to turn the corner in their major league careers. He says that the Tigers are basically ruining Porcello's chances of becoming the star pitcher that he has the potential to be by keeping him in the majors, and not giving him the time (and less pressure) he needs to work on his game in the minors.
However, if you send Porcello to the minors, you inevitably have to fill his spot in the rotation. And that's where the difficulty lies. Do you promote from the minors, and subsequently hurt the development of another prospect? Convert a middle reliever to a SP role, and create another gap to fill?
Personally, I think the Tigers should option him down to Toledo for the rest of the season and shouldn't bring him back to Detroit until June of next year. I think it's safe to say we're no longer playoff contenders, so there really seems to be no reason to keep him here. As far as filling his role, I'd say their best bet is to move Eddie Bonine or Brad Thomas into the rotation and get guys like Schlereth, Figaro, and other minor league relievers into a sort of rotation to fill in the bullpen. This would enable them to keep guys like Andy Oliver (who also looks to have good potential) in the minors, and give them the time they need to develop.
What are your thoughts?
if anyone is still deciding on lunch. Heard it on the radio this morning, offer valid to all of metro Detroit for pick up only.
I am taking my family up to Traverse City from Ann Arbor this weekend and heard there was construction or otherwise bad traffic up near Traverse City in recent weeks. Does anyone on this blog live up there, or has traveled near there recently that can verify this? I will check MDOT and other sources for official information, as I am sure responders might send me there, but all work is not always listed. Thanks, in advance.
The Bucs then signed running back Carlos Brown, the former Michigan star who entered the league in April as an undrafted free agent with the New Orleans Saints.
+1 DixieWreck if he comments here as he broke it but wasn't at the 20 point barrier yet.
This is my mgoapology. I apology to everyone for the comments I made earlier about Justin Turner. I got caught up in the drama of everyone making woah is me posts and I seriously could not see the big deal. I understand Justin is a five star recruit with great potential if only he would clean up his attitude. Losing a player with his potential always hurt. Heck it hurt when we lost Carson Butler for all of his head caseness. If Justin does come (which it sounds like there is small chance he is going to go back on his transfer request), it doesn't change my attitude towards him. He still needs to get his butt in gear to be a contributing member of the team.
I for one should understand what Justin is going through, as I almost transferred after my fresman year at Purdue to Michigan. I stuck it out and I became a better person out of it. If Justin's he will also be a better person and he will earn a Michigan degree.
If any of you all are looking for something to do Saturday and live in the Ann Arbor area, I offer forth one last time the UofM Club of Detroit's the Let's Go Brew! Battle of Ann Arbor's Finest Beers craft brew tasting taking place 8pm this Saturday at Jolly Pumpkin Brewery on Main Street in Ann Arbor (right by the MDen) to benefit two UofM Scholarships. Tickets are still available at $50, most of which is tax deductible. Tickets can be purchased by calling 734-647-2689 with your credit card information.
There will also be a silent auction and raffle for items including footballs signed by the 2006 Michigan team, 2007 Michigan team, and Jake Long. A hockey stick autographed by Red Berenson and FOUR GOOD SEATS AND PARKING TO THE BIG CHILL AT THE BIG HOUSE.
Here's the link http://www.kines.umich.edu/alumni/beer_tasting.pdf
I thought this one was worth mentioning in light of the recent (perceived) exodus of Michigan commits to the CHL. So, in an effort to show that it's not just a Michigan problem, as has been mentioned before, I give you:
Montreal Canadiens first-round pick Jarred Tinordi is taking the more common route to the National Hockey League.
The London Free Press reports that the 18-year-old defenceman has chosen to play with the London Knights of the Ontario Hockey League next season, instead of joining Notre Dame.
With the move to the OHL, Tinordi will play a longer schedule and can attend the Canadiens' training camps. College players are not allowed to go to camps until they have left school and signed with their NHL team.
I really debated posting this because it's not Michigan-related at all (yes, I know, ensue "negging"), but please forgive me, as I thought that this was at least marginally newsworthy, especially in the slow period for hockey news.