Possibly The Most Ridiculous Unverified Voracity Ever

Possibly The Most Ridiculous Unverified Voracity Ever

Submitted by Brian on July 31st, 2015 at 1:41 PM

IT'S THAT TIME OF YEAR AGAIN, EVERYBODY. They've let Tim Beckman out of his tiny pool, gently removed the arm floaties, and put him in front of reporters. Let's see how that's going!

DID YOU THROW THE BALL OR NOT AHHHHH

Illinois kept this person because he led their football program to a better than average performance for them, which is usually why you keep a football coach. Funny ol' world.

OKAY BUT SERIOUSLY. Whenever I see Tim Beckman put in a low-pressure situation and asked softball questions he looks like a dog that doesn't know whether you're going to throw the stick or beat him with it. How does this person get past a job interview, let alone a Head Football Coach job interview?

That is a high pressure situation in which questions like "why on Earth would we pick a guy with one good season in the MAC with an outlying turnover ratio to coach our team?" get asked. Was the answer Illinois sought "uh, team performance leads to excellence in all our endeavors"? Did they not notice when he repeated that when they asked him what he wanted for lunch?

Help me understand. I do not understand.

Also at Big Ten Media Days. Harbaugh finna get himself shivved bae*:

Also, and always, Beckman.

*[I think? I may have just said "Harbaugh I fart on myself" in teentwitterese.]

Also also at Big Ten Media days. Never let it be said this is not journalism.

"Saade is a self-taught taxidermist and says that the job can actually be quite lucrative." Got a lot of dead chipmunks around the house. Dunno why. Mother keeps saying something about mah sleepwalking. Mother says she don't wanna say when I ask why such a thing would happen. Mother says waste not want not. Mother don't remember which team won that crazy overtime game from a few years back on account of her blackout. Mother is pretty sure though. Mother is always right.

Chipmunk-Football_0[1]

Mother says this is how it's always been and how it always will be, mother and the chipmunks and the always recovering on-side kicks and never ever havin nobody named Braylon she knows about, no nothin. That ain't even a name she says. Who ever heard of a name like that. Who ever heard of that.

Sometimes I think I ain't sleep-murderin no chipmunks but I know better than to say so.

You know, for a turkey that's on the lam there seem to be a lot of photos of it in the same place. God, I wish this had happened when I was in college.

image

If I could fight a turkey on my way to discrete math I would be so happy.

Also

"Do not try to approach the turkey," she said. "We've gotten calls from people who have been trapped and unable to move because he's cornered them."

The symptom. It's hard to blame Devin Funchess for his occasional lackadaisical play last year. If I was suffused with ennui it's hard to imagine what he was going through. But that's the thing about coaching: it is your job to get people to play to the best of their ability. Brady Hoke did not do this, and Funchess was the best example last year.

Here is confirmation of that from what's annually the best thing to come out of Big Ten Media Days, Mike Spath's article where he offers anonymity in exchange for real talk:

"They had a guy that on paper was just a nightmare because he was so tall, and big - he was supposed to be a tight end but they played him at wide receiver [Devin Funchess] - and man all week our coaches just kept saying, 'We've got no one that can match up with him. No one that can stop this kid.'

"It was motivating and I was foaming at the mouth, but I built him up into this goliath that was going to take my best effort, and he took a lot less than that. He didn't seem to care at all about helping his quarterback out.

"Everything about him was half-speed. It was sort of like what they used to say about Randy Moss - when he knew the ball wasn't coming his way on a play, it was like he wasn't even out there."

Randy Moss made it work, and Funchess ended up a second-round pick. But you read that and it's just like… I knew that. And I knew that it didn't come from Funchess, it came from the program.

Ferentz finally under the gun. Matt Hinton surveys the situation at Iowa, which is still technically part of the same conference Michigan is:

“It’s been five years now of unremarkable football, is probably the best way to put it,” says Marc Morehouse, who took over the Hawkeyes beat at the Cedar Rapids Gazette in 1999, the same year Ferentz arrived in Iowa City, and who has seen more than his fair share of unremarkable football. “I’ve covered Ferentz since he’s been here, and the ‘hot seat’ concept has come up in the past, but I’ve never taken it seriously. … I’ve never bought into it, but this year, even in November, even in January after [the bowl game], I’m buying into it. OK, this is a real hot seat now. This is a hot seat year, no question about it.”

Ferentz has doubled down here by letting his starting quarterback depart for a team technically in the same conference. If Rudock does well and Iowa remains Iowa-esque, Ferentz will go from "can't afford to fire" to "can't afford to keep" in a flash.

All of this makes for a fascinating alternate history in which Michigan goes with the coach Lloyd Carr recommended if they were making an external hire. Things probably go better for a while. Does Ferentz take better advantage of Michigan's ability to recruit? Are they again that kind of 8-4, 9-3 team that Michigan was for big chunks of the 90s?

The end of civilization. Not with a bang but with a pun.

Etc.: They promise to actually pay attention to the illegal men downfield rule this year. Now I like it when the Onion writes something about Michigan! A whopping 37% of top-100 players who aren't one-and-done transfer. Kellen Jones has been to Michigan Oklahoma Clemson Wisconsin Tampa Panama Mattawa La Paloma Bangor Baltimore Salvador Amarillo...

The Grand Opening

The Grand Opening

Submitted by BiSB on May 2nd, 2014 at 9:15 AM

Previously on we-ripped-this-off-from-BHGP: ID16, ID16 part II, Urban's meeting.

As you may have heard, the Big Ten opened its new office in New York City recently, and the media got its first look on Wednesday.

Big Ten HQ

What you may not have heard was that shortly before the media took their tour, the Big Ten coaches and a handful of administrators got a look inside. We have a transcript of their meeting.

Delany Delany: Okay, thanks everyone for coming. Before we begin…

Hoke Hoke: Years?

Delany Delany: Aw hell, not this again. Anyway, what I was…

Hoke Hoke: YEARS???

MeyerMeyer: He’s not going to stop until you do it, Jim.

Delany Delany. Sigh. Okay, fine. 135.

Hoke Hoke: CHAMPIONSHIPS?

Dantonio Dantonio: Yep!

Meyer Meyer: Congratulations, blind squirrel.

Hoke Hoke: BEAT?

Beckman Tim Beckman: Off!

Beckman Beckman: …hehehe…

Beckman Beckman: Get it? Cause he wanted us to say “Beat Ohio,” but instead I made a funny. Which is what we call jokes in Illinois.

Pelini Bo Pelini: Dude, Darrell, how the hell did you lose to that buffoon?

Hazell Darrell Hazell: Did you see what Danny Hope left me? The cupboard was bare, except for those jars of urine. And Rob Henry. I probably should have played the urine more.

Delany Delany: ANYWAY, thanks for all taking the time to come to the opening of our new offices. We’re hoping that given our new territory, we can expand our brand…

Brandon Dave Brandon: WOOT!!!

Hoke Hoke: Sorry, he does that. It isn’t voluntary.

Brandon Brandon: What are we hashtagging this meeting? #B1GLifeB1GOffices? Damn I’m good.

Delany Delany: Let’s just get the tour started.

[AFTER THE JUMP: the tour]

Hokepoints: The 2012 Season, in Photos

Hokepoints: The 2012 Season, in Photos

Submitted by Seth on February 19th, 2013 at 9:46 AM

Two photos by Upchurch made into one.

I've been spending much of the last week going through last year's photos by Eric Upchuch (ChewerD on the site) to find the good stuff for this year's HTTV. Ninety-five percent just gets deleted, several hundred make it to folders I can access for various players and stuff. Then there's the shots and sequences that I can't, for whatever reason, use in the book but can't in good conscious throw out. So here you go.

NOTRE DAME:

jakeclose

You know those guys who stick their heads in lions' mouths? We've got a cameraman who'll stick his lens inches from Jake Ryan. Peer into the soul of the Viking.

[The rest after THE JUMP]

Hokepoints: The Big Ten Has a Problem

Hokepoints: The Big Ten Has a Problem

Submitted by Seth on February 12th, 2013 at 9:08 AM

It is a day after National Signing Day and the Big Ten has inked yet another lackluster group of mostly 3-star recruits. Fearing a further drift toward mediocrity, representatives from each relevant school have secretly gathered together. Their goal:  rescuing the competitive future of their once mighty conference!

A prayer is offered to AIRBHG and thanks given unto BHGP for allowing me to rip off their format.

-------------------------------------------

Scene: A little-used back room of the Palmer House in Chicago, its walls lined with trophies honoring the conference's academic achievements, and tasteful sweaters. A group of men and a duck mill about, most huddled around a smartphone showing walrus porn. One is eyeing the gilded stand lamps, apparently wondering if they're bolted down. They are watched by a shadowy figure in a ski mask. JIM DELANEY enters…

delany: The Big Ten Emergency Meeting on Recruiting Top Talent to the Midwest will now come to order. B1G T3N Divisions, ROLL CALL:

urbzangrypsuzelleraduck: Leaders!

hokebraypelinimsufatpitzkillferentzconsin: Legends!

delany: Dammit Barry.

consin: Leaders!

delany: I'd like to take this opportunity to introduce our two newest members, Notre Dame and Texas.

knight: Hark, fair commissariat, thou speakest in error, for surely thou didst mean mineself and mine good compatriot of Mary's land.

terppppp: I can get my parking validated right?

delany: Unh, right. Good afternoon.

terpppppknight: Good afternoon.

hokebray: Championships!

terppppp: What's he saying?

delany: It's the…no, Brady we're not doing the thing.

hokebray: CHAMPIONSHIPS!

knight: Undoubtedly the stout knave is expecting some manner of riposte.

[More. Oh so much more, after the JUMP!]

Independence Denard: The Integration and Infiltration

Independence Denard: The Integration and Infiltration

Submitted by Brian on September 8th, 2010 at 12:03 PM

PREVIOUSLY IN OUR STORY: Many ridiculous things happened! Desmond Howard's lower body was cloned by a nefarious organization bent on Michigan world domination. It was subsequently abducted by J Leman. Seven years later, Leman captured Tom Brady and brought him before Bob Zook and a duck, whereupon James Earl Jones and Lawrence Kasdan convinced Leman his actions were un-American, whereupon he freed Tom Brady, whereupon Tom Brady impressively KICKED the duck into a cloning machine, whereupon Bob Zook released Adrian Clayborn to devastatingly SACK Tom Brady into the same cloning machine, whereupon said cloning machine said a lot of ominous stuff and did this:

explosion

As the smoke clears, three separate pockets of life stir…

INT. RUINED URBANA GENETICS LAB—SUB-BASEMENT B1. 1999.

jleman_thumb6 Urrrrr.

duck_thumb4

jleman_thumb6 What the…?

duck_thumb6 Quack.

jleman_thumb6 Oh my God! Poor thing. I have to get you out of here.

duck_thumb6 Qua—. On second and long Michigan will run a draw or throw a screen. Third and long pass. Punt. Waggle comes after approximately 3.5 successful runs on drive; give or take x, where x is a complicated polynomial expression elided. Quack. Jim Herrmann's favorite defense in a late-game situation is called "Charmin." Yost. Quack. Quack.

explosion_thumb7

jleman_thumb6 We have to go!

INT. RUINED URBANA GENETICS LAB—SUB-BASEMENT B1. 1999.

tombrady2_thumb9 Urrrr.

 image

tombrady2_thumb9 What the…?

brady-howard HELLO ITS VERY NICE TO MEET YOU IM FEELING VERY MOBILE AT THE MOMENT YES YES LETS DO SOMETHING DO YOU LIKE CHESS I CAN PLAY CHESS IN TWO SECONDS FLAT

adrian-clayborn_thumb[8] There they are!

tombrady2_thumb9 No!

brady-howard [Impressive KICK!]

adrian-clayborn_thumb[8][4] Noooooooo!

brady-howard CHECKMATE.

tombrady2_thumb9 How did you do that?

explosion_thumb9

brady-howard LETS GO SOMEWHERE FAST

INT. RUINED URBANA GENETICS LAB—SUB-BASEMENT B1. 1999.

bobzook_thumb6 Urrrr.

  image

bobzook_thumb6 What the…?

brady-duck Quack.

bobzook_thumb6 What happened?

duck_thumb5 AFLAC!

brady-duck Quack.

bobzook_thumb6 I see.

duck_thumb5 AFLAC!

bobzook_thumb6 Have I told you about my brother Ron? Greatest football coach in the universe, really.

explosion_thumb11

duck_thumb5 AFLAC!

EXT. SUSPICIOUSLY SMOKING FIELD OUTSIDE OF URBANA. 1999.

duck_thumb6 Quack. 107,501. Quack. Most all time victories. Quack. The rush linebacker position is basically a defensive end.

jleman_thumb6 Boy, you know a lot about Michigan.

duck_thumb6 Quack. Require sustenance.

jleman_thumb6 All I've got is this orange juice. Very American drink, orange juice.

duck_thumb6 Juice. Desire Juice. Juice. Juice.

jleman_thumb6 Here. Now what are we going to call you?

EXT. SUSPICIOUSLY SMOKING FIELD OUTSIDE OF URBANA. 1999.

tombrady2_thumb9 So… now what?

brady-howard NOW EVERYTHING WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE [Starts running to and fro, disappears too quickly to believe. A trail of smoke stretches to the horizon.]

tombrady2_thumb9 Great.

[An ENORMOUS BUS FULL OF SCANTILY CLAD MODELS pulls up.]

Gisele-Bundchen-boobiesNeed a ride?

EXT. SUSPICIOUSLY SMOKING FIELD OUTSIDE OF URBANA. 1999.

bobzook_thumb6 I guess I need a new nefarious plot. I always think better with a little help.

joint [expands Bob Zook's mind, reminds everyone not to try this at home unless you want to think that facial hair is a good idea.]

brady-duck Quack.

bobzook_thumb6 Okay, here.

joint [when inhaled by half-human, half-duck hybrid becomes a permanent feature of the creature's personality]

brady-duck Quaaaaack. Munch. Munch.

bobzook_thumb6 HA HA DUCK MUNCHIES THAT IS SO FUNNY

tombrady2_thumb9Gisele-Bundchen-boobies Yoink!

bobzook_thumb6 Aww, now what am I going to watch eat?

INT. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS MEETING ROOM. FEBRUARY 2002.

charlieweis_thumb13 Quack.

billbelichick_thumb6  Goddammit, where's Brady? Get him in here again.

charlieweis_thumb13 Quack.

tombrady2_thumb9 He says the Rams' two-minute defense has obvious weaknesses against four verticals.

billbelichick_thumb6 You got all that from "quack"?

tombrady2_thumb9 Definitely. I'm telling you, he gives us a decided schematic advantage.

billbelichick_thumb6 To me he just seems like a hideously malformed being with an enormous waist that says "quack" all the time.

tombrady2_thumb9He's a super genius. Srsly.

billbelichick_thumb6 Well, all right. Maybe that tip will come in handy tomorrow. I've got to go meet with the defense.

charlieweis_thumb13 Quack.

tombrady2_thumb9 Have I ever told you you're head coach material?

Charles_Montgomery_Burns_thumb6 Brady. Come in, Brady.

tombrady2_thumb9 Brady here.

Charles_Montgomery_Burns_thumb6 Report on The Project.

tombrady2_thumb9 After I win the Super Bowl tomorrow I calculate a 97% chance the abomination ascends to the head coaching job at Notre Dame.

Charles_Montgomery_Burns_thumb6montgomeryburns_thumb 

EXT. DEERFIELD BEACH HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL FIELD, 2007

denarddeerfield_thumb5 ZOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM

footballcoach_thumb14 Oh my God. This kid is going to run for a billion yards.

denarddeerfield_thumb5 ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP

footballcoach_thumb14 Oh my God. This kid is going to throw for a billion yards.

denarddeerfield_thumb5 I JUST PLAYED SIXTEEN GAMES OF CHESS AND SMILED WITH THE WATTAGE OF A THOUSAND SUNS

footballcoach_thumb14  Oh my Go—hackachakahcakakach. [/expires]

darth-vader-face_thumb[9] No one must know about our secret installation. Now I just have to figure out how to get this kid to complete 45% of his passes and run for under 600 yards.

tombrady2_thumb9 Let me take care of that.

charlieweis_thumb13 Quack.

EXT. MICHIGAN STADIUM, MICHIGAN VS ILLINOIS.  2008

mikewilliamsprofile_thumb4 Oh God. Oh God. Oh God. He's coming. He's like a 500-foot-tall robot or something.

juicewilliams_thumb11 Quack. Also, given the Coriolis effect at these exact GPS coordinates I calculate that if I touch you exactly two point three centimeters above your right clavicle…

mikewilliamsprofile_thumb4explosion_thumb12

INT. NEWSTERBAAN FIELD HOUSE. AUGUST 2009.

Charles_Montgomery_Burns_thumb6 As you can see, the long-awaited results of our cloning projected have paid off even better than we expected. This year you go to a bowl or we block out the sun above Ann Arbor.

rich-rodriguez You don't think that's a little drastic?

Charles_Montgomery_Burns_thumb6 No. This is Michigan.

 denarddeerfield_thumb5 QUAAAAAAACK

rich-rodriguezrich-rodriguez-what

Charles_Montgomery_Burns_thumb6 Goddammit, get Brady in here again. This is going to take more time than I thought.

EXT. MEMORIAL STADIUM, MICHIGAN VS ILLINOIS. 2009

mikewilliamsprofile_thumb4 No! Not again!

juicewilliams_thumb11 All too easy.

mikewilliamsprofile_thumb4explosion_thumb12

EXT. EVERY OTHER ILLINOIS GAME, 2006-2009

ron_zook_thumb8 DO SOMETHING!

juicewilliams_thumb11 Quack.

ron_zook_thumb8 DO SOMETHING OTHER THAN THAT!

juicewilliams_thumb11explosion_thumb12

EXT. DIRT PRACTICE FIELD. SUMMER 2010.


EXT. MICHIGAN STADIUM, MICHIGAN VS UCONN, 2010.

denarddeerfield_thumb5 ZOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOM

randy-edsall2 Not in the face!

denarddeerfield_thumb5 ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP

randy-edsall2 Not in the face!

denarddeerfield_thumb5 VRRRREEEEEEESHOWWWWWWWWWWWWW

randy-edsall2 Randy-Edsall

randy-edsall2 Not there either.

rich-rodriguezrich-rodriguez-thumbsup

TO BE CONTINUED… BY EVENTS IN THE REAL WORLD! THIS TOTALLY HAPPENED!

Independence Denard: The Dark Before The Dawn

Independence Denard: The Dark Before The Dawn

Submitted by Brian on September 7th, 2010 at 11:49 AM

Obviously two things:

  1. Depending on whether or not BHGP likes it, this is either an homage to or straight ripoff of their posts in this vein, down to J Leman's presence. I have tried to make this up to them in the content. Also, the J Leman picture was first brought to the world in those Big Ten team previews I used to do.
  2. I can't confirm that this is true, if you know what I mean.

INT. CLANDESTINE NORTH CAMPUS GENETICS LAB—MEETING ROOM. 1992

A conference table is surrounded by hooded figures. One throws back the hood, revealing himself to be STEPHEN ROSS, super rich guy. Also seated are JAMES EARL JONES, sith lord, and DOOMED J. SCIENTIST, a scientist.

Charles_Montgomery_Burns I hereby bring this meeting of the Evil Michigan World Domination Illuminati to order. First order of business: the Desmond Howard cloning situation.

BrentSpiner_IndDay There have been some… issues. We have successfully dealt with the flippers, but it came at a cost.

darth-vader-face You have failed me for the last time, Doomed Scientist.

BrentSpiner_IndDay haacckckackaackak

Charles_Montgomery_Burns Always with the force choke, James. Can we get past the bit where you tell him his lack of faith is… disturbing and get on with it.

darth-vader-face I still don't see why we can't build a football stadium in the wave field and get Tom Harmon back.

Charles_Montgomery_Burns Yes, always with the force choke and the building it and the coming. Moving on. Doomed scientist?

BrentSpiner_IndDay We have now perfectly replicated Desmond Howard's lower body. There are some problems with the torso. As you can see on my powerpoint--

darth-vader-face You have failed me—

Charles_Montgomery_Burns Yes, for the last time. Spit it out, Doomed Scientist.

BrentSpiner_IndDay The main problem with the torso is that there isn't one. It just kind of… stops.

desmond-howard_the-pose

darth-vader-face I find its lack of torso—

Charles_Montgomery_Burns Yes, yes, disturbing. For the record, I do too. You have created a mindless abomination that can accelerate to full speed in half a second, stop on a dime, and juke like there's no tomorrow. Shoot it in he head.

BrentSpiner_IndDay It doesn't have a head.

Charles_Montgomery_Burns Then have Jones mystically force choke it to death. Next order of business: the destruction of Notre Dame football.

darth-vader-face I am positioning Texas A&M defensive coordinator Bob Davie to be the droid Lou Holtz is looking for.

Charles_Montgomery_Burnsmontgomery-burns

INT. CLANDESTINE NORTH CAMPUS GENETICS LAB—SUB-BASEMENT B1. 1992.

BrentSpiner_IndDay I'm sorry. I'm sorry it has to end like this.

desmond-howard_the-pose  …

BrentSpiner_IndDay You're just a torso! Don't look at me like that.

desmond-howard_the-pose

BrentSpiner_IndDay I can't do this. We must escape!

jleman

 jleman Come with me.

BrentSpiner_IndDay J Leman?

jleman It is I.

BrentSpiner_IndDay Aren't you seven?

jleman What's your point?

BrentSpiner_IndDay Nothing. Let's go.

security_guard Halt!

pistol_m9_500  BLAM BLAM BLAM

BrentSpiner_IndDay Noooooooooo… [/expires]

jleman [Ninja CHOP!]

security_guard Noooooooo…

jleman Let's go, Desmond Howard lower body. I have plans for you.

desmond-howard_the-pose

INT. CLANDESTINE URBANA GENETICS LAB—SUB-BASEMENT B1. 1999.

Another meeting room. BOB ZOOK, Ron Zook's evil but lazy twin, and a DUCK discuss dark matters.

bob-zook Mwahahaha! Seven years of mustache twirling and pot smoking are about to pay off tonight!

duck  You had better hope this plot works better than your last dozen, Zook. My patience runs thin. My pit of ravenous piranhas grows hungry. We must repay our arch-rivals for the generations who have endured nothing but humiliation!

bob-zook Oh, it will. Hark: here comes the strike team now.

jleman I have done as you asked, distasteful as it is.

tom-brady-2 mrphpmph.

bob-zook What's he's saying?

duck No doubt something like "you'll never get away with this, Hyper-Intelligent Duck That Secretly Runs Illinois." But I will. Mwa. Mwa haahahahaahaa!

bob-zook  Mwahahahahahaha!

lightning BOOM.

tom-brady-2 mrprhphphp.

duck Oh, let's listen. I love it when doomed heroes blather on.

bob-zook [removes gag]

tom-brady-2 You'll never get away with this, Cooper!

duck I said arch-rivals!

tom-brady-2 And by this you mean…

duck You know, your most hated rival!

tom-brady-2 Ohio State.

duck No! Other than Ohio State!

tom-brady-2 All right, then. You'll never get away with this, Davie!

duck No, your really really most hated serious very serious rival. Who you share a debilitating mutual hatred of! Not Notre Dame!

tom-brady-2 You'll never get away with this, Saban?

duck Aaaaaaaargh!

tom-brady-2 Alvarez? No… wait, I've got it. Mason!  You'll take the Little Brown Jug from my cold, dead hands!

duck No! How many times do I have…

[Tom Brady tries to remember all of the teams in the Big Ten. Meanwhile, GHOSTLY APPARITIONS of James Earl Jones and LAWRENCE KASDAN materialize nearby…]

anakin  J. I am your father.

jleman Noooooooooooooo! You're not my father!

anakin Search your heart. You know it to be true.

jleman Oh. My. God.

lawrence-kasdan I told you it would work.

anakin Free Tom Brady. This is un-American. Victories are born on the field, not in genetics labs.

jleman You speak truth. [Ninja CHOP!]

tom-brady-2 …I'm sorry, I'll get it in a second. You'll never get away with this, whoever Northwestern's coach is!

duck If I didn't need you for my diabolical plots I would impale you on my bill.

tom-brady-2 Also I appear to be free. [Impressive KICK!]

duck [flies towards complicated, ominous looking technological thing with glass tubing containing a familiar set of disembodied legs]

bob-zook No! Release the defensive ends!

adrian-clayborn I am free.

tom-brady-2 My one weakness! Lo, I am stripped of my merry band of protectors! Wait, aren't you 11?

adrian-clayborn The least realistic part of this is not my age but the idea Bob Zook and a duck could capture me. Allow me to take my rage out on you. [Devastating SACK!]

tom-brady-2 [flies towards same ominous technological thing]

duck [Thunderous CRASH!]

tom-brady-2 [Similarly thunderous CRASH!]

cloning_01 BZZZTERERFFFFFZZZZEDDDD CLONE SEQUENCE ERROR. MULTIPLE ORGANISMS. CROSS PRODUCT. CROSS PRODUCT. CROSS PRODUCT. MULTIDIMENSIONAL ARRAY. EIGENVECTOR. COMBINATION IN PROGRESS. OVERLOAD. OVERLOAD.

explosion

WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO DESMOND HOWARD'S DISEMBODIED LEGS? WILL BOB ZOOK FACE HIS COMEUPPANCE? WILL TOM BRADY'S BEAUTIFUL FACE BE MANGLED? WILL BLACK HEART GOLD PANTS ORGANIZE A DENIAL OF SERVICE ATTACK ON MGOBLOG? STAY TUNED FOR PART 2: THE INTEGRATION AND INFILTRATION. TOMORROW!

What If There Was A Committee?

What If There Was A Committee?

Submitted by Brian on March 23rd, 2010 at 2:27 PM

Insanely too long, but I fell down the rabbit hole on this one.

There is an annual complaint against the Pairwise when Team X is passed over in favor of considerably less deserving team Y. This is an exercise in pointlessness, but I was curious as to what a tournament that's selected by eyeballing it would look like. Let's pretend I'm the committee and put 16 teams together.

AUTOBIDS

Boston College, North Dakota, Cornell, Michigan, Alabama-Huntsville, and RIT.

AT-LARGE LOCKS

Denver and Miami have the top two records in the country against the #8 and #14 schedules. Wisconsin and St. Cloud are 3 and 6 in RPI and have top ten records against top ten schedules.

THE EXCESSIVELY LARGE BUBBLE

TEAM Record RPI TUC Record Rank SOS Conference finish Conference tourney
Bemidji State 23-9-4 0.543 6-2-1 6 34 1st CHA Third place tie
Yale 20-9-3 0.537 4-1-2 8 40 1st ECAC First round
NMU 20-12-8 0.535 11-8-5 13T 19 4th CCHA Runner-up
Ferris State 21-13-8 0.533 6-10-3 13T 30 3rd CCHA Fourth place
Minnesota-Duluth 22-17-1 0.533 11-14-5 18 9 4th WCHA Fifth place
UNH 17-13-7 0.533 7-10-6 19 12 1st HE First round
Alaska 18-11-9 0.530 6-7-6 16 26 5th CCHA Round of eight
Vermont 17-14-7 0.526 9-9-5 21 13 8th HE Semi-final
Michigan State 19-13-6 0.525 8-10-2 17 27 2nd CCHA Round of eight
Colorado College 19-17-3 0.524 8-14-3 25T 7 6th WCHA First round
Union 21-12-6 0.523 2-4-3 11 39 3rd ECAC Second place
Minnesota 18-19-2 0.519 9-17-2 34 2 7th WCHA First round

Those are the next ten teams in the RPI, the shiniest record remaining after that, and the team KRACH says should be in the tourney that isn't anywhere near these teams in RPI.

Of the above teams the first one off the board is Northern Michigan. The Wildcats have the best TUC record by far of any team with a significant number of games played, a strong RPI, and the best combination of record and schedule strength. NMU is 7-2-5 against this cohort.

Bemidji State is next with their excellent RPI and 7-5-2 record against a 14-game slate of WCHA and CCHA opponents that included a three-point weekend against Northern, a sweep of UMD, and a win over Miami.

And we will take Yale as a 20-9-3 ECAC champ even if KRACH thinks they are worse than eight WCHA teams.

Goodbyes

Now we get down to the tough decisions. Three spots left for eight teams. They come in three sets:

  • High RPI: Ferris State, UMD, UNH.
  • Low RPI: Vermont, Michigan State, CC, Union, Minnesota
  • Straddling: Alaska

Minnesota is mostly included to show how broken KRACH is as a real world selection device. In its world, an under .500 WCHA team that finished seventh in its conference, went 5-3 OOC and has a horrible TUC record would be a three seed. There is an NCAA rule prohibiting teams under .500 from getting at-large bids after Wisconsin pulled that trick off a couple years ago. They're dropped.

Next, we shoot down Michigan State. There are two CCHA teams with big RPI advantages on them. Both have better records against basically equivalent schedules. Taking them would mean taking the other two CCHA teams and having six in the tourney, something that can't be justified given the relative nonconference results.

We also shoot down CC, which didn't do anything in the nonconference or playoffs to disprove the idea it's a below average WCHA team. CC's nonconference consisted of a split against Northeastern, the ninth place team in HE, a win against Cornell, a loss against Maine, and four games against an assortment of AH and CHA teams. KRACH, of course, has them ninth nationally because they're almost .500 in the WCHA.

Union is the next to die with their ugly SOS and nonexistent TUC categories. That's something that can be overlooked when you have a nice RPI, but there's no reason to look at Union's schedule and think they're somehow underrated.

The Real Bubble

TEAM Record RPI TUC Record Rank SOS Conference finish Conference tourney
Ferris State 21-13-8 0.533 6-10-3 13T 30 3rd CCHA Fourth place
Minnesota-Duluth 22-17-1 0.533 11-14-5 18 9 4th WCHA Fifth place
UNH 17-13-7 0.533 7-10-6 19 12 1st HE First round
Alaska 18-11-9 0.530 6-7-6 16 26 5th CCHA Round of eight
Vermont 17-14-7 0.526 9-9-5 21 13 8th HE Semi-final

The only low RPI team we can't dismiss is Vermont, which went 3-3 in six games against RPI #2 Denver and #4 Boston College. They also beat Yale and UMD in single games and went 2-3-1 against UNH. Their TUC record is the most impressive of any team not already selected. They finished eighth(!) in Hockey East, yes, but they were three points from third. Going 6-1 in the nonconference and beating league champ UNH in the first round of the playoffs means they're worth a look.

Ferris has the best record of any remaining team other than ECAC foe Union but they have an ugly TUC record that's made uglier by the details: four of Ferris's six wins are against UNO, the #21 team according to RPI. The others are wins against Michigan and Michigan State.

New Hampshire… same boat, but they are 3-2-1 against Vermont for whatever that's worth.

Alaska swept Ferris, split a trio with Michigan, and tied three of six against Northern. 

UMD is in a similar boat: eight of their eleven TUC wins are against #18 CC (who they played an improbable seven times) and #22 Minnesota. However, Duluth has a better record, RPI, and SOS than UNH and Vermont. They have slightly worse records by a much higher SOS than either of the CCHA teams. Minnesota-Duluth is in.

We have to kill two of these teams. I don't know. Maybe goal differential?

  1. Ferris State: +0.65
  2. Alaska: +0.45
  3. New Hampshire: +0.21
  4. Vermont: +0.05

That does not help at all. This is why they went with the Pairwise. Okay. You cannot possibly put Vermont in the tournament over UNH when UNH has a better record, RPI, SOS, conference finish, and beat Vermont head to head. And I don't think you can leave out UNH without a good reason when they proved themselves vastly superior to all HE teams not named Boston College. So New Hampshire's in. Then you have three teams.

TEAM A has the best record and RPI but weakest schedule.

TEAM B swept team A but has a meaningfully worse record and a worse league and conference finish.

TEAM C beat more really good teams than the other two but lost to more bad teams and finished in eighth place in its conference.

I… I guess I'm going with Ferris State and validating all the complaints. But it's not like this is obvious.

Seedings

Working backwards since those should be the easiest:

16. UAH
15. RIT

Small conference autobids for teams with bad metrics.

14. Ferris State
13. New Hampshire
12. Minnesota-Duluth

Last three in.

11. Michigan

Michigan gets ahead of UMD and Ferris by virtue of common opponents. The other metrics are so close as to be nearly indistinguishable, but Michigan has a major edge in COP against a conference opponent in Ferris and a 10-2 to 8-6 advantage against UMD. The comparison with UNH is basically a push in all categories, so Michigan gets the edge for the strong late-season run.

10. Yale
9. Bemidji State

I guess this is where strong records against weak competition go.

8. Northern Michigan

Clearly the best of the bubble-ish teams.

7. Cornell
6. St. Cloud State

They've separated themselves from the below; it's a coinflip as to which is 6 and which is 7.

5. Boston College
4. North Dakota
3. Wisconsin

Three teams for two one-seeds. Wisconsin has a major edge in comparisons against BC; North Dakota narrowly loses TUC but actually has a much more impressive record since they played 15 games against RPI top ten opponents (and another five against #12) to BC's one. The COP category is BC's mostly because North Dakota went 1-4 against Denver. Since RPI is basically equivalent, I give the nod to North Dakota's SOS.

2. Denver
1. Miami

These are the obvious top two teams in the tournament. Picking between them is not a big deal since the last two teams are by far the least impressive and both should go meekly. Miami does have all three points in the PWR comparison so we'll go with them.

Bracket

That sets us up with one intra-conference matchup in the first round: Cornell versus Yale. We'll swap Yale and BSU.

Fort Wayne

1. Miami vs 16. UAH
8. Northern Michigan vs 9. Yale

Albany

2. Denver vs. 15. RIT
7. Cornell vs. 10. Bemidji State

St. Paul

3. Wisconsin vs. 14 Ferris State
6. St. Cloud State vs. 11. Michigan

Worchester

4. North Dakota vs 13. UNH
5. Boston College vs. 12. Minnesota-Duluth

Attendance will be shaky in Fort Wayne, but there's no way to swap Michigan in since Northern is holding down the 8 seed unless you want to swap the entire matchup. If Northern and St. Cloud had comparable metrics, I'd do it but there's a big enough gap that the bracket integrity is more important.

Differences

Minnesota-Duluth probably should have been in easily, but was left out in favor of Vermont. If you put a gun to my head, I'd say Ferris is more deserving than Alaska. Apparently, in my Northern is slightly underseeded; other than that it's not much different, at least not this year.

If I was the king of college hockey I'd have the committee hand select the last couple at large bids but then use the Pairwise for seeding.