Wednesday Presser Transcript 9-5-12: Brady Hoke

Wednesday Presser Transcript 9-5-12: Brady Hoke

Submitted by Heiko on September 5th, 2012 at 1:55 PM

News bullets and other important items:

  • Taylor Lewan is fine.
  • Blake Countess has not had his ACL surgery yet. 
  • WR Joe Reynolds is simulating the Air Force QB.
  • Courtney Avery will start at corner. No final decision on Fitz yet, but he'll probably start.
  • The player receiving the Oosterbaan jersey has basically been chosen.

Brady Hoke

Oh Taylor you're so fine, you're so fine you blow my mind, hey Taylor.

Opening remarks:

“Thanks for coming. Game week’s going well. Thought we had a good practice yesterday. Thought we were physical. Thought we had a great tempo. Did a lot, had to learn a lot. You’re playing a new offense and they’re unique defensively at the same time because of some of the 30 stuff that they do. We have a good work day again today. They’re a good football team. Troy’s always done a good job. [I] have some familiarity with the Mountain West from playing them. They’re always going to be a team that plays 60 minutes, and they’re going to run and be disciplined in what they’re doing on both sides of the ball, so we’ve got to be at our best.”

(After the jump, Hoke discusses Air Force, the secondary, tight ends, weight loss, twitter, and health)

Unverified Voracity Gawps At Stuff

Unverified Voracity Gawps At Stuff

Submitted by Brian on September 5th, 2012 at 12:02 PM

[Programming note: UFR is coming today, but later than usual, say 4 or 5. For some reason I'm having trouble summoning the willpower to slog through all of it.]


Sponsor note. You may be driving in for the Air Force game and wondering where you will park. It hangs over you like a great dark cloud: where will my friends be? Will I have to walk through miles of jungle to get to them? Where did all this jungle come from anyway?

Well, skip that bit. Park 'n' Party solves those issues by organizing gameday parking. You can park next to your buddies, no intervening jungle. You can reserve a space just where you want it. You can do all of these things. Bonuses this year:

Air Force parking awaits you. Soon they will debut a 2.0 website. Soon.

Holgo. I know they hate our guts and went all ex-girlfriend on us when Rich Rodriguez left, but I can't help but want West Virginia to tear the Big 12 up. They're weird, passionate, isolated from all recruiting hotbeds that are not Pittsburgh, they've got a history of putting up video-game numbers, and their coach says stuff like this:

I don't think it would go well if we hired that guy (learning: I has it), but I'll admire them from afar.

I am not sure you are up on recent events. Air Force coach Troy Calhoun on Michigan:

"There are a handful of programs in college football that are guaranteed at least 10 victories every season," Calhoun said, "Michigan is one of them. They clearly are the favorite to win the Big Ten Conference."

I'm imagining a world where this is literally true. I'm so happy, in this world. I wear sunglasses all the time and high five anyone I come across. I make pancakes a lot just so I can put a whipped-cream smiley face on them. If my car breaks down, I exclaim "aw, shucks!"

I chew bubble-gum nonstop.


my watch says it is STAB O'CLOCK

How did this not end in homicide? Serious question:

The misery wasn't over for some fans of the No.8-ranked Michigan Wolverines on Saturday night at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington when their team took a 41-14 pounding at the hands of then-No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide.

Many who planned to catch a taxi for the return trip to their hotels or other lodgings after the nationally televised football game were in for a long wait. Some complained of standing in line with dozens of other fans and waiting as long as two hours for a cab.

Beer + that game + two hour wait for cab == STABBY STABBY STAB STAB. The local news channel interviewing these folks says this lady is not mincing words!

Michigan fan Elizabeth Jahn minced no words. "If there's a system, and this is where the fans are supposed to be stationed and situated, that should be communicated to the cab companies," she said.

That lady minced those words, TV station. She took those words and made them tiny and even by chopping. If she was not mincing words she would have said "I STAB YOUUUUUUU."

Alphabetical. Spencer kicks it off by talking about how Alabama owned Michigan. At least we're not alone:

Again, it is not a Big Ten thing: disabuse yourself of that notion immediately, Michigan fan. The last thing we want you feeling is special, because what happened to you on Saturday night in Dallas was not special. Slightly different than in past years? Perhaps: Doug Nussmeier's offense appears to be a bit more happy to turn A.J. McCarron loose, particularly in early innings, and the defense didn't pressure so much as constrict Michigan into tiny, useless spaces turning Denard Robinson into a doomed sub captain. Depth charges: Alabama has them

Unfortunately, his assertion that no one died does not account for the Countess injury. Sad face.

Bubble popping? I've muttered about how college football fans are getting close to the breaking point for a while now, and Pat Forde has just documented an opening weekend that was an attendance bust all around. I was shocked at more than one of these factoids:

There was exactly one announced capacity crowd in eight Southeastern Conference home openers. Before the Labor Day Georgia Tech-Virginia Tech game, six out of seven Atlantic Coast Conference schools had smaller crowds than their openers last year – some of them much smaller. Attendance was down at six out of eight Big 12 home openers from 2011. Five out of eight Pac-12 schools had smaller crowds as well, and Oregon's 13-year sellout streak was in jeopardy until game day.

I saw the Florida-BGSU game and was shocked at a corner of the endzone in the upper deck that was all but empty. Even the bluebloods are reaching their limit.

Michigan doesn't seem to have similar problems except when it comes to getting the students to show up on time, but they should benefit from this trend. They may have already after snagging one-off home games with Oregon State and Colorado in the near future. Would those have happened ten years ago? Probably not. Increasing ticket prices and the ubiquity of television are pushing the economics of college football back  towards actual games between teams. Tomato cans aren't going away but we should see them gradually recede from their boring-ass apex. High five, epic ongoing recession!

Bubble expanding. Via Get The Picture, the Ed O'Bannon lawsuit that threatens to drain money from the NCAA and give it to the players whose images have been expropriated has decided to aim higher:

O’Bannon seeks a judge’s permission to expand the class action to include current D-I football and men’s basketball players. O’Bannon does not ask that current players be paid while in college. Instead, he wants a temporary trust set up for monies generated by the licensing and sale of their names, images and likenesses. Players could access those trusts at the completion of their collegiate careers.

The O'Bannon plan sends half(!) of broadcasting and a third of video game revenue to the players. Even partial success here would be seismic. I'm in favor, obviously.

Austin Hatch to 2014. Everyone in the world speculated that Austin Hatch would take another year of high school after his tragic plane crash, and now that's official. He's a 2014 recruit now.

Michigan is now at 13 for next year's team will have open spots if Hardaway or Trey Burke head for the NBA, which is why they're still after some 2013 guys. The most prominent is Reggie Cameron, a 2.0 version of Smotrycz hopefully without the existential depression.

As for Hatch, if he doesn't recover to the point where he can play, Michigan will still honor his scholarship. Presumably they would give him a medical; I'm guessing in this situation the NCAA would provide whatever waivers would be necessary lickety-split.

!?!?!?!? Touch the Banner interviews JB Fitzgerald, and he says this!

(3.)  If you had to choose, who was your favorite coach at Michigan, including position coaches?

"So many great coaches I had the privilege of learning from, which I expected going into a program like Michigan. Two coaches really stand out.  First, Greg Robinson - truly a class act and the depth of football knowledge that I was able to gain from him is hard to put a price on. And then of course Coach Hoke."


Air Force stuff. Via mgovideo:

Oosterbaan unretirement. MVictors scores an interview with Ben McCready, Bennie Oosterbaan's godson:

MVictors:  As one of the representatives of Bennie Oosterbaan family, did the athletic department reach out to you to ask if the family would be interested in participating in the Legends program?

McCready:  Dave Brandon contacted me last September to see what I thought of the Legends program.  I loved the idea.  He and asked if I could put him in touch with members of Bennie’s family. I was happy to put Dave in touch with Bennie’s surviving relatives (8 in all), most of whom Bennie and his wife Delmas were very close to throughout their lives.  Dave sent letters to all of them. Every member of the family responded to Dave that they loved and supported the Legends Program and the "unretiring" of Bennie’s jersey.

McCready wants Jordan Kovacs to wear 47, which nooooooooooooooooooo.

Seriously, though, as the guy who famously hauled in Benny Friedman's passes, I'd hope Oosterbaan's 47 goes to a wideout. 47 would be a lot more notable on a WR than a defensive player, and Michigan already has to throw Gerald Ford's #48 to someone other than a lineman due to modern-day number restrictions. The Wisterts' #11 should end up on the DL somewhere; Ron Kramer should obviously be given to a TE.

Etc.: Quality diary featuring Hall and Oates. A dinged Rex Burkhead does not need surgery. He may be out a bit but should be fine by the time Michigan hits Lincoln. Texas A&M is going to get pwned. This Week in "John L Smith must stay forever": prank-calls reporter at presser. Comprehensive M blogosphere Alabama react collection. To his credit, Dantonio says MSU players need to shut up.

Tuesday Presser Transcript 9-4-12: Al Borges

Tuesday Presser Transcript 9-4-12: Al Borges

Submitted by Heiko on September 4th, 2012 at 6:47 PM

Al Borges


MGoQuestion: If you had to play Alabama again, what parts of the game plan would you keep that worked well Saturday? What parts would you want to change?

“Very little would I change. Very little. Almost none. But that’s probably harder to grasp because of the way we executed. The game plan didn’t look very effective, but the whole thing was geared to if they loaded the box up, we were going to throw the ball. If they left the box light, we were going to run it. We ran the ball into a light box 12 times and had plus-four runs three times out of the 12. And we hit two out of 10 shots down the field. So the other alternative is to plus-one run with the quarterback. We did some of that, too, but they weren’t going to let you do that. As much as you wanted to give that a shot, that wasn’t going to happen. No one’s done that to them. Look at the numbers in the past. No one’s done that to them.”

(After the jump, Borges answers questions about Denard, Denard, Devin, Denard, and Air Force but does not answer a question about bubble screens.)

Tuesday Presser Transcript 9-4-12: Greg Mattison

Tuesday Presser Transcript 9-4-12: Greg Mattison

Submitted by Heiko on September 4th, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Greg Mattison

Opening remarks:

“Well, first of all, you saw the game, and obviously we weren’t pleased as a defense. A lot of things we stand for and the things we set out to do each year, we weren’t successful in a number of those situations. The biggest thing is missed tackles. We can’t have that in our defense. We had way way way too many missed tackles. And another thing that led to missed tackles as you watched the tape was we had missed techniques. We’re not good enough right now to be able to not play perfect technique, and when you don’t play great technique, somebody’s going to have to make an open field tackle or somebody’s going to have to make a tackle that you hope the ability of everything to stay inside and in front would take care of. That’s really a lot of what happened in the game.”

(After the jump, Mattison talks about the secondary, Alabama's offense, linebacker technique, Air Force's offense, and the defensive line)

Monday Presser Transcript 9-3-12: Brady Hoke

Monday Presser Transcript 9-3-12: Brady Hoke

Submitted by Heiko on September 3rd, 2012 at 2:35 PM

Brady Hoke

News bullets and other important items:

  • Blake Countess is out with an ACL tear. You are totally surprised.
  • Brandon Moore is out this week with an MCL strain. Taylor Lewan is "fine" and good to go for Air Force. 
  • Both Fitz Toussaint and Frank Clark will play this week.
  • Bennie Oosterbaan's number will be unretired this week during the game vs. Air Force.
  • Courtney Avery is starting at field corner.
  • Alabama did stuff with their safeties and linebackers to keep Denard from running, for what it's worth.
  • Gardner wants to compete for starting QB job next season (not transcribed).


Televised Presser


Opening remarks:

“Good afternoon. You know, we looked at the film and the good news is we have 11 more opportunities to play Michigan football. We didn’t play the way we needed to play to win the football game in a lot of different areas, from a tackling standpoint to blocking at the line of scrimmage. Those are two of the biggest factors. Didn’t run the ball as we liked to and didn’t stop the run, and that is two things that as a defense and offensive unit you have to do. We’ll learn from the mistakes. We’re going to practice today. We gave the guys off yesterday because of getting in at 5 a.m. Sunday morning, so we’ll start fixing the mistkaes, talking about the mistakes, coaching them better. That’s probably the number one issue. We have to do a better job as coaches. The other part of it is making sure that the execution is the way we would like it to be to play Michigan football.”

Unverified Voracity Demands Eternal JLS

Unverified Voracity Demands Eternal JLS

Submitted by Brian on June 7th, 2012 at 4:22 PM

I missed you. John L Smith, never leave us again. We have gone too long without a college football coach organizing "etiquette team dinners."


College football should institute a rule: every year one team who fires their head coach is randomly chosen, and John L Smith coaches that team on an interim basis for a year. It's for the good of everyone. Yes.

Across this line you DO NOT… Hoke restating the obvious:

"The in-state rivalry is always something that's important to us," Hoke told sports editors and reporters at Weber's Inn. "We have not done our job the last four years if you're on the Michigan side of things. That's coaching, and that has to be better.

"But the Ohio game is the Ohio game. I don't think (that importance is) going to change," Hoke said. "And that doesn't lessen anything on the Michigan State game at all, because we realize in this state, you draw a line in the sand."

Obviously this was in response to some question about whether people respond to stimuli—

Hoke was asked if the Michigan State game carries even more importance for Michigan now than when he was here as an assistant under former coach Lloyd Carr, in part because of the improved Spartans under coach Mark Dantonio and also because of the Big Ten title game.


"Brady Hoke, can you be accurately defined as a life form?"

"Well, Lansing-based reporter, I can tell you I do respond to stimuli. Here, look. I shine a light in my eye. The pupil contracts. I hope this has been informative."

Hoke is also in favor of keeping the Ohio State game at the end of the season.

BREAKING EXCLUSIVE. Hearing that Connecticut offensive tackle Harry Poggins will commit to Michigan by Tuesday at the latest, or may have already done so. EXCLUSIVE DO NOT REPORT.

So… the long snapper. I don't get it either, man. In case you missed it, Michigan picked up a longsnapper with much fanfare yesterday. The fanfare comes because Scott Sypniewski says he's got a full ride, and this makes people confused. I am among you. Michigan picked up a walk-on who seemed pretty good last year (not the one MSU poached) and has a couple years of Sugar Bowl receiving MVP runner-up Jareth Glanda left. You'd think Michigan would wait and see if they could turn that slot into an excellent prospect before spending it on a guy whose main goal will be total anonymity.

Sometimes these things are confused. Lloyd Carr's last act as Michigan head coach was to bring George Morales aboard, but I don't think he ever factored into scholarship discussions. We'll see if Sypniewski signs a letter of intent. He may have been offered a conditional scholarship in the event Michigan has one at the end of the year, that sort of thing. If it's an out and out scholarship offer to a long snapper in early June that would be… odd.

Goodnight noon. Air Force and UMass are both 3:30 kickoffs, UMass on BTN and Air Force an ABC/ESPN2 reverse mirror. If those games aren't at noon it's hard to imagine Michigan will play more than one or two games then all year.

If you go to the games and care a lot about college football, that sucks. Most of the interesting games are on at the same time as yours and you can't watch the end of the noon games. Then you miss a chunk of the evening games. I feel like I've been getting less informed about everything going on in CFB, and that's a main reason why. Also, do we understand how many humiliating Notre Dame losses we're not seeing because of overlapping game times? THIS IS SERIOUS.

This is admittedly less of a problem during lame nonconference weeks in which Air Force-Michigan is worthy of ABC. The games we'll be missing in that window include Syracuse-USC, Purdue-Notre Dame, and… uh… UNC-Wake Forest. Songs will not be sung about September 8th, 2012.

Side note: a while back I was told that BTN could not show 3:30 games because of the ABC contract. Clearly there are some exceptions to that. Maybe it's just conference games?

The lines? Jamiemac promises a full evaluation of the hypothetical lines put out by Beyond The Bets on this here site a bit later. I'll be interested to hear his take on their assumptions. The conference schedule, with games Michigan is an underdog in bolded:

  • @ Purdue: M –7
  • Illinois: M –18
  • MSU: M –6.5
  • @ Nebraska: M +3.5
  • @ Minnesota: M –14.5
  • Northwestern: M –17.5
  • Iowa: M –14(!!!)
  • @ OSU: M +4

Those are not real lines. I assume a line with Michigan favored by two touchdowns over Iowa would be obliterated in ten minutes. But I don't bet. That's Jamie's area of expertise. For his part, Jamie wants to jump on MSU with the point.

Anyway, if those assumptions are anywhere near accurate that's about equal to a prediction of a 6.5-1.5 record. That feels a half-game high to me.

Position paper: Chick Fil'A. As the Big Ten-SEC blogger fight drags on into a sixth decade, positions must be taken. Here is one on Chick Fil'A: it's not as good as Southerners claim, especially displaced Southerners, but it is a cut above competing chicken sandwiches from other fast food joints. I'm sorry if this has caused anyone to snap in disappointment in either direction.

Big Two, Little Ten update. ESPN revamps/expands its rankings. No significant moves except a bit of a fall for Mike McCray and the addition of Dukes, Butt, and Gedeon to the specifically ranked. Michigan has 16 guys in their 300, OSU 12, the rest of the Big Ten combined: 9.

This is their list of the top 17 players in the midwest:


Hokemon, yo. Note that the two linemen not committed to Michigan on the list didn't have a chance to pull the trigger. Also, damn you Lane Kiffin.

Weekly Glenn Robinson III hype. From the Indy Star:

"Every time I see him play," said Indiana All-Stars coach Craig Teagle, "his stock goes up with me."

The 6-6 Robinson, who goes by "Tre," has earned rave reviews with his All-Star teammates this week. On a team filled with talent from the immediate area -- nine of the 13 players on the roster are from either Marion County or a neighboring county -- there was a bit of unfamiliarity with Robinson, who played at Lake Central High School in the extreme northwest corner of the state.

It didn't take long for the Michigan recruit to make an impression with his above-the-rim style, dunking nearly everything he touched in a scrimmage on Sunday.

"Wow," said North Central guard Patrick Ingram. "I've seen him play before, but didn't really know him that well. I like his game a lot. He can dunk from anywhere."

This basketball season promises to be fun.

Etc.: Wisconsin kerfuffler Jared Uthoff transfers to Iowa, ensuring that Bo Ryan goes out the Woody Hayes way. Ohio State gave back its Sugar Bowl profit for tatgate, but Gene Smith kept a 60k bonus for reaching the game. Hockey recruit Alex Kile profiled. Michigan pays their assistants money

Dear Diary Poops Rainbows

Dear Diary Poops Rainbows

Submitted by Seth on January 13th, 2012 at 7:13 AM

Old McPointsalot had a farm, E-I-E-I-Oh. And on that farm he had…

A Rainbow-Pooping Unicorn. This isn't going to do us any favors with the New York Times. Also you should mentally add "unicorn pooping rainbows" to things you should never search for on Google Images.

What you are seeing (other than a unicorn pooping rainbows at a post-Apocalyptic Gowanus Canal) is the opening salvo of BlueSeoul's last game wrap of the season:

This week's love-hate relationship status with Al Borges is .... .... Love? That's odd, because during the game there were times when the needle was strongly tilted towards hate.  But after a second look at the game film, the final analysis, just like the outcome of the game, is slightly positive.

Much like the Iowa game, the lack of production on offense wasn't really his fault so much as it was a combination of a lack of execution, personnel limitations, and a darn good defense.

So ends 2011, the year of the oxymoronic fecal substances. On to 2012, the year that is the year we play Alabama in Dallas.top_gun_goose_and_maverick

Unto this breach goes hart20 to give an early and detailed count of returning starters for next season's opponents. He wrote this before Coker quit Iowa but for future reference whenever you preview Iowa always count at least one extra sacrifice to the Angry Iowa Running Back Hating God. Ohio State returns the most starters (they lose 5 on offense and none on D) while Air Force has to replace 17 starters and their backup QB. Diary of the Week, this.

And in That Future Was a Playoff, F-U-O-Hi-O. Playoff the first is by JeepinBen and takes parts of the basketball tournament that might work for football. It has 11 teams. The MWC and Big East champions plus four at-large teams play a week Cottonbowlafter the conf. championship games, then face three of the five big conference teams in Round 2. It would see Bama playing at TCU on December 10. I would give the at-large teams the home field instead of the crappy conference champs. Boise State fans will say different but Boise State's president probably won't be too hurt about splitting half of 110,000 tickets rather than half of 10,000 to have the game on blue turf.

The second is by Seattle Maize and isn't a playoff, more like "move the BCS decision until after the bowls." Ten teams go to BCS bowls based on tie-ins, and then we recalculate the BCS to pit the best two of the remaining five (the Cotton gets an upgrade) against each other. Upside: the only fans traveling on short notice are going to the National Championship game (which should be two weeks after). Downside: doesn't really solve anything – it's just another BCS, albeit a better one than we have now.

And in Those Playoffs Were These Recruits. I can't believe umhero wrote this composite ranking chart of three sites' Top 100 on the boards. Michigan's seven players who make someone's Top 100 is tied with Florida State for 3rd. Texas has 11; Bama 10. Our reality is the one that exists in some Alabama freshman's NCAA 2004* dynasty (his roommate plays Boise State and created Cam Newton as payback for the entire pack of Fig Newtons that disappeared from the fridge). Also in this universe he can edit recruit names to funny things like 2013 S.C. receiver, "Uriah LeMay," and Ace would interview them. Ace also spoke to PA tight end Adam Breneman.

If you are a recruit in RollTide06's reality, before choosing a school based on NFL potential, best to read docwhoblocked's study on your chances first.


* If it was '05 nobody would be able to catch; if it was '03 he wouldn't know to hire name his generic middle-aged coach Saban.


And the Basketball Was Back, but it Never Left, Yeah It Did, No It Didn't, Yeah It Diddanoitdidn't. We join ClearEyesFullHart in an appreciation fest of where Michigan basketball has come from Dom Ingerson. However far this goes, Dani Wohlit feels like the cagers have now crawled through the shit pipe to clear the program from the prison of the '90s, carved our name in the half-way house that claimed SMU football, put in our time at Amaker Grocery in the aughts, and now we're on a road to paradise. It makes a much better story than an ellipsis between tournament appearances:

I suppose that's why Brian's wording, "Right now we're going through the last vestiges of having no expectations because we have no program" made me just a little bit angry.  Because I can remember when we had no program.  I remember when beating Bowling Green was a big deal.  I was there, and it was actually quite a while ago.

The argument is semantic, and on the Ellerbe years I'd rather forget too, but in ways I'm with CEFH. There were times in the lost years that Michigan was reduced to a 3rd string walk-on Jewish kid playing guard with literally no ligament in his elbow, but I'd still take any five of Dani Wohl's vital organs over this year's Penn State team.

More Blockhams by Six Zero and the Sparty hate gets going on his home site:


The artwork is fantastic, and Six is really one of the good guys. You sense a 'but' in there. Okay there's a but, but first repeat the caveat about Six Zero being awesome in 99% of ways. But: social messaging future Buckeyes and trolling Spartan offspring when they ask an answerable question are acts that make me not like the Michigan fan characters. The Sugar Bowl one was great. He's got "Tom" down. "Desmond," the collegiate Blockham, appears annoying and probably got his MGoBlog account suspended for copious use of the word "Stud." Grandpa Glenn's an asshole. Needs MOAR character development. Am i being overly harsh on a comic that's six strips old? Yes I am.

And in Etc. There Was a Yak. Seriously, There's a Yak in This Diary! CRex's personal life and what the dry ear wax phenotype has to do with the bar scene in Ulaangom. And a shout-out to everyone who helped the Mathlete complete the now comprehensive list of D-I coaches and coordinators since '03.

Best o' th' Boards



Using the sneaky but effective ploy of posing as a mild-mannered classmate of Ace, patstansik, better know as "Pre-Game Pat," scored the exclusive interview with the elusive Anbender. What mysteries lie behind the only person doing actual work around here? What improbable twists of fate and snappy dressing led a young man of San Francisco to climb to the heights of bloggerdom, and reach fame so great his mom gets questions from the checkout guy at Kroger's.* It's all there in Ace: The Podcast.

If you'd like to share your own story on how you became a Wolverine, you can do so in the thread by Mr.Mario86.


* There's no apostrophe-'s' in 'Kroger' you say? Well I say this is Michigan fergodsakes's




Voting has concluded on the new Ohio license plate voting with "Bo" and "Worst State Ever" notable write-ins. Well trolled my friends.


Michigan56The battle lines are drawn. Of things I don't like changing, the numbers on the helmets are somewhere between the fact that keys don't look like keys anymore and my hair line, i.e. doesn't bug me that much but if I had a choice I'd go back to the way things were.



It was this week last year. Who's awesome? You're awesome!

Unverified Voracity Confirms The Obvious

Unverified Voracity Confirms The Obvious

Submitted by Brian on January 31st, 2011 at 12:54 PM

Obvious. As part of his annual defense of the recruiting-industrial complex, Doctor Saturday has surveyed many things. Now he has struck upon the most over- and under-achieving teams as seen through the lens of recruiting classes. The overachieving list has a variety of causes:

  1. Oregon. Spread genius.
  2. Oregon State. JUCO/grayshirt addiction.
  3. Virginia Tech. FSU, Miami, UNC, and Clemson all recruit like demons and suck on the field. The methodology here prioritizes wins over teams with good classes no matter their results on the field. The ACC champion is set up to do well here.
  4. Iowa. Own Penn State, greatly benefit from Michigan's implosion.
  5. Stanford. Harbaugh. Sigh.

The underachieving list… well, you don't even have to look, really. Guess which big time rivalry finishes 1-2? You get zero opportunities. You got it anyway:


Hurray! In Michigan's case the underachieving is due to massive attrition, a change in program philosophy, the program delightfully eating itself alive, and the dumbest hiring decision in the history of the world. Notre Dame had a decided schematic advantage.

The rest of the lame are UCLA, Texas A&M, Miami, and FSU. Unsurprisingly four of these teams have changed coaches in the last two years. UCLA is going to have a hard time not firing Neuheisel next year, leaving A&M the only school that may be able to dig out under the current leadership.

Special K is a disease. He infects the world. I could help but think about Special K when I read about UConn's spelling cheer. It's the generic spelling cheer wherein you spell out the thing you like and repeat it three times. Example: "B-A-C-O-N bacon bacon bacon!" In this case it's U-C-O-N-N. It would be better if it was bacon, but it's UConn.

UConn's version is actually a cool tradition, however, because of this guy:


His name is Kenny, and the reason UConn has a cheer almost as good as B-A-C-O-N is because this lone nut created it via force of personality. People love this:

The reason Big Red's cheer has caught on and become a marker of UConn's success for the past 20 years is because, unlike so many things at UConn games, it is organic. There is no sponsor. It is not forced. It is not pre-packaged. No, instead it is a reflection of pure joy at the success of the young men who step out on the court wearing the jerseys that say "UConn." It is beautiful, and cheering along with Big Red is one of my favorite parts of being a UConn fan.

Unfortunately this year the cheer has been pirated by the PA guy and is deployed at times completely irrelevant to the game situation. It's basically WHO WANTS SOME FREE UCONN CHEER. In two years it will be WHO WANTS SOME FREE UCONN CHEER BROUGHT TO YOU BY CORPORATION. It is in this way that genuine things are co-opted and destroyed by marketers.

Also: bacon, bacon, bacon.

Filling in another hockey blank or two. Hockey gets a 2012(?) commit from Max Shuart, a nephew of former Wolverine captain Alex Roberts. Shuart's playing for major midget—unusual for a Michigan recruit at this stage in his career—and has filled in with the U17 team this year. He's got no points in three games with the U17s.

Michigan also just picked up an Alex Kile from Compuware for 2013. Kyle leads his team with 18-19-37 in 32 games, and is ninth in the league in scoring. He was a 14th round pick of London in the OHL draft—it's always hard to tell how much of that seeming lack of respect is talent and how much is signability.

MHN points out that Kile and Shuart were born only ten days apart, so Shuart may be ticketed for 2013 instead of 2012. That would make more sense since a guy who's doing well, but not amazingly, in midget doesn't seem like a guy who's going to make an impact in two years. I couldn't find anything on the internets indicating either guy was getting early hype, FWIW.

Random two year old sings fight song. Aww.

Is there a way to avoid this pun? Rumors of Soony Saad's departure for Europe are no longer rumors. Michigan's going to have to replace basically all of their scoring next year, which totally sucks because with Saad they were probably Big Ten favorites and in position to establish the sort of success that sustains itself over years. Now I'm not sure who the hell is going to be probably better than Robbie Findley.

Yes, dolla bill. The number for Michigan's guarantee game against Air Force: 1.1 million, which tops Ohio State's million-dollar payout to Navy by a few thousand dollars but not their $2 million guarantee to Colorado. It's a little scary that we just went back to a mid-90s Michigan DC and we're going up against the triple option, no?

Bug status. Items fixed:

  • The iPhone app.
  • IE bug where content would show up way down the screen. (Inline CSS wasn't getting used on pages other than the homepage, for some reason.)
  • Up/down voting has returned. It's a bit different, as an update in the software brought a new widget that tracks up and down votes separately and more obviously. There's also a setting to "dim" comments that fail to meet a certain threshold; I picked –5. No idea what that will do yet. [It appears the answer is "nothing," but maybe it puts classes on these items that I'm not doing anything with yet.]
  • Have restored image upload facilities for trusted users using WLW. There is new login information that can be found in the post that explains how to use WLW with MGoBlog.

List of known issues in approximate order of importance:

  • IE 7 users (and I think just IE 7 users) are having issues seeing the box wherein comments are composed. Note: I don't even try to support IE 6, so if your company hasn't updated its browser in ten years I cannot help you.
  • The message board is ugly and uses space inefficiently again (but at least there are permalinks).
  • Voting is not applying points to user accounts.
  • mgolicious is not automatically updating.
  • Sidebar pagers are goofy.
  • The message board homepage is also in an undesirable state.

If there's something else wrong email me about it, please.

Etc.: There was a very silly article that chalked up Forcier's departure to the "impossible expectations" placed on his shoulders, such as going to class and not taking incompletes. It cried out to be fisked; The Wolverine Blog has fisked it. Tom Harmon is the #5 Big Ten Icon, so 1-4 better have dominated jungles, too. Braves & Birds explores why commentary is so dumb. Wrestling takes out OSU and Indiana; I stumbled across the OSU dual on BTN and decided "what the hell" since Michigan was ahead. It was surprisingly entertaining.

Michigan To Play Air Force In 2012

Michigan To Play Air Force In 2012

Submitted by Brian on January 28th, 2011 at 3:03 PM


The local beat reporter in Colorado Springs has tweeted that Michigan will fill in one of its holes in the 2012 schedule with Air Force. That's a one-off at Michigan Stadium, obviously, and a higher-quality one than usual. Given the way these things go Michigan is probably going to be shelling out a cool million bucks to the Falcons.

Why? Well, that year's home schedule is awful—OSU, Nebraska, and Notre Dame are all on the road with Alabama in Dallas—and whatever small cachet Air Force brings to the schedule it's better than Eastern Michigan or Baby Seal U. I'd expect the last nonconference opponent to be a MAC team.