One Frame At A Time: UCF

One Frame At A Time: UCF

Submitted by Ace on September 13th, 2016 at 3:01 PM

This play didn't crack the top five this week. I still want to talk about it, though. Not that you need to be told this, but watch Jabrill Peppers, who starts the play lined up on the block M.

The rest of the defense is caught flat-footed on this play. The D-line is slanting away from the running back. The force defender is nowhere to be found. The playside corner is caught in man coverage and has his back to the play. Peppers's first two steps are towards deep center, then he has to alter his path to avoid running into Delano Hill.

With a speedy running back around the edge unimpeded, this play looks destined for a first down. Peppers not only reads the play and covers a ton of ground to get to the back before the sticks, he cuts down the angle and finishes the play by literally throwing the RB out of bounds.

Savor every moment you get to watch this guy—excuse me, this Dude—play football. He is truly a once-in-a-generation athlete.

[Hit THE JUMP for the rest of the UCF game in GIFs.]

One Frame At A Time: Notre Dame Renewed

One Frame At A Time: Notre Dame Renewed

Submitted by Ace on July 7th, 2016 at 2:15 PM

Home/road imbalance be damned, Michigan-Notre Dame is back, and that is cause for raising your arms in triumph like you're Jim Harbaugh beating the Irish in 1985. Before the 2013 game, I put together a GIFs post of the best moments of the rivalry (from a Michigan perspective, at least), and today marks a great time to update and revisit it.

[For many more GIFs from Notre Dame games of the past, hit THE JUMP.]

Jim Harbaugh GIF Tournament 2016: The Bad Times Region

Jim Harbaugh GIF Tournament 2016: The Bad Times Region

Submitted by Ace on April 25th, 2016 at 2:32 PM

Brian is out for the day, so I've moved the next region of the tournament up a day, in part because one more day of voting isn't going to change the results from the Good Times region. Those results:

#1 Harbaugh As Grinch: 5,190 (93%)
#8 Harbaugh Clapping: 375 (7%)

#4 Harbaugh/Drevno Awkward Celebration: 2,374 (56%)
#5 Harbaugh/Drevno Successful Fist Bump: 1,902 (44%)

#3 "You're Really Good": 2,236 (57%)
#6 Rudock Hug-Like Substance: 1,696 (43%)

#2 Spring Game Grin: 3,249 (76%)
#7 Fist Pump: 1,046 (24%)

Those were relatively easy selections; even the dueling Harbaugh/Drevno celebrations had a gap of nearly 500 votes between them. This region should be more competitive; I've seeded (and reseeded, and reseeded) Harbaugh's various sideline blowups for the Bad Times region, and it should come as no surprise that this is the strongest group. 

As always, click the stills to open each GIF in a lightbox. Righteous anger, ahoy.

THE BAD TIMES REGION

(1) Rage Stripping vs. (8) Hat Antics

It's great enough that Harbaugh gets so hot under the collar he has to start stripping. I'd like to also draw attention to Kori the Cord Guy, who has to be in the running for most skilled student equipment manager in the country.

It speaks to the brutality of this region that this is only an eight-seed. The GIF begins with Harbaugh already incensed enough that he's removed his hat; I'm pretty sure he momentarily forgot this, as that weird head-rub thing—as you'll see in a few GIFs—is how he angrily takes it off. Otherwise this is a pretty standard Harbaugh-ref interaction until he snaps his hat back onto his head, which takes this from entertaining to mesmerizing. Again, this is the eight-seed.

Which GIF Advances?

 

 
 
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(2) Slow-Motion Meltdown vs. (7) Intent To Deceive

Magnificent. Every TV outlet needs a dedicated Harbaugh super-slow-mo camera.

To top off Harbaugh's dismissive-turned-rageful reaction to the infamous "intent to deceive" penalty, we catch a glimpse of a very amused Jay Harbaugh in the background right at the end. Yeah, he's seen this before.

Which GIF Advances?

 

 
 
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(3) WELL OKAY vs. (6) Plea To The Football Gods

After a Florida defender committed an obvious facemask on Amara Darboh, Harbaugh sprinted down the sideline screaming for a call, gesticulating the whole way.

You may note a brave player—by the arm sleeve, I believe it's Jabrill Peppers—tried to get Harbaugh's attention when he reached the offical. Harbaugh, too deep into rage mode to notice, proceeded to scream "HEY, THEN CALL IT. YOU CALLED IT? YOU CALLED IT? WELL, OKAY."

The best moment from a spectacular Harbaugh performance in the Citrus Bowl. There's a little more context provided in the comments of that post; the reason Harbaugh was so upset is the official closest to the play missed the obvious facemask call and had to be bailed out by another official who was standing well clear of the play. In the GIF itself, though, all we see is Harbaugh screaming for a flag that's already been thrown, and that's peak Harbaugh.

Jim Harbaugh is a living reaction GIF. This is one of the finer examples.

Which GIF Advances?

 

 
 
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(4) Sheet Throw vs. (5) Rage On The Run

Harbaugh showing off his Maravichian arsenal of rage moves.

If there's a GIF I underseeded, it's probably this one. The technique stands out here. With one deft movement, he removes his headset; with another—the aforementioned back-to-front motion—his hat is in his hand. The rest of the sideline stands back to watch the show. Did I mention Harbaugh had a magnificent Citrus Bowl performance? I did? It's worth saying again.

Which GIF Advances?

 

 
 
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Voting will stay open until the next region posts, which should be Wednesday or Thursday.

Jim Harbaugh GIF Tournament 2016: The Good Times Region

Jim Harbaugh GIF Tournament 2016: The Good Times Region

Submitted by Ace on April 22nd, 2016 at 2:52 PM

Michigan Hockey Summer is in full swing. Basketball season is a distant memory. Spring football is over.

It is time.

Jim Harbaugh isn't just one of the best football coaches on the planet; he's also the most GIF-able, as we found out first-hand this past season. By my quick count, over 60 of last season's MGoGIFs featured Harbaugh, and I've narrowed those down to a field of 32. A couple quick rules:

  1. The GIFs had to be from the 2015 season. That eliminates anything from his playing career, pre-Michigan coaching days, or the 2016 spring game.
  2. No edits. Just pure, unadulterated Harbaugh.

I've divided this tournament into four regions/categories: The Good Times, The Bad Times, Harbaugh In Action, and Uncategorizable Harbaugh. Yes, the seeding process was damn near impossible, and there will undoubtedly be (legitimate) gripes about my selections, but I've left the voting up to you, our dear readers.

Voting in the first round of this region will run through Tuesday, when the next region will run. As usual, click on the still images to open each GIF in a lightbox.

THE GOOD TIMES REGION

(1) Harbaugh As Grinch vs. (8) Harbaugh Clapping

Harbaugh's Grinch-like response to a question from the postgame Citrus Bowl presser is the reaction GIF I've always wanted but never knew I needed.

This is Jim Harbaugh clapping. It's alright, I guess. The Good Times region, admittedly, isn't quite as strong top-to-bottom as the others.

Which GIF Advances?

 

 
 
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(4) Harbaugh/Drevno Awkward Celebration vs. (5) Harbaugh/Drevno Successful Fist Bump

I can't get over how uncomfortable this is. Harbaugh's late switch to the bump technique nearly causes Tim Drevno to high-five his forearm.

Much better, albeit less hilarious. The scoreboard animation definitely adds something to this one.

Which GIF Advances?

 

 
 
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(3) "You're Really Good" vs. (6) Rudock Hug-Like Substance

"I told him," Harbaugh began, "'man, you're really good.'"

Indeed.

I love how this interaction is both tender and strictly professional. That's one formal one-handed hug, yet you can still tell Harbaugh is welling with pride.

Which GIF Advances?

 

 
 
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(2) Spring Game Grin vs. (7) Fist Pump

I went back and forth between this and the presser grin for the one-seed and I'm still not convinced I have the order right. Harbaugh surveying the scene at the spring game and looking like there isn't another place in the world he'd rather be—I mean, this GIF can be forwarded to every idiot NFL reporter who suggests Harbaugh isn't long for the college game.

A standard-issue fist pump. Like the 1/8 matchup, this one shouldn't be close.

Which GIF Advances?

 

 
 
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One Frame At A Time: Citrus Bowl

One Frame At A Time: Citrus Bowl

Submitted by Ace on January 5th, 2016 at 12:48 PM

Jim Harbaugh saved his best for last.

After a Florida defender committed an obvious facemask on Amara Darboh, Harbaugh sprinted down the sideline screaming for a call, gesticulating the whole way.

You may note a brave player—by the arm sleeve, I believe it's Jabrill Peppers—tried to get Harbaugh's attention when he reached the offical. Harbaugh, too deep into rage mode to notice, proceeded to scream "HEY, THEN CALL IT. YOU CALLED IT? YOU CALLED IT? WELL, OKAY."

Sealing this as my favorite Harbaugh GIF of the year is the scoreboard chyron showing that a flag was down the whole time.

[Hit THE JUMP for Dad Rudock, Jehu Chesson, heel clicks, and much more.]

One Frame At A Time: Charles Woodson

One Frame At A Time: Charles Woodson

Submitted by Ace on December 22nd, 2015 at 3:55 PM

As always, click the links/stills to open each GIF in a lightbox.

I attended my first Michigan game in 1994, at the tender age of six. One year later, Charles Woodson made his debut in Maize and Blue.

Yesterday, Woodson announced his impending retirement. In the interim, he put together arguably the greatest career by a defensive player in football history. Those of us lucky enough to watch him at Michigan are hardly surprised.

I could talk about how Woodson changed the game of football at the college and NFL level, how he became the archetype and the prototype of a spread-killing defensive back. Today, though, I'd rather remember how he changed the games in my backyard. In my first couple years in Michigan, I'd run through the yard as Tyrone Wheatley or Tim Biakabutuka, scoring touchdowns against imaginary defenders. After seeing so many athletic feats of this ilk, however...

...I spent much more time crouching down, backpedaling, and jumping imaginary hitch routes. Woodson made defense cool. How could you not want to be this guy?

As Woodson's Michigan career wore on, imitating his greatest moments required an increasingly versatile imagination. Doing so also had some unintended consequences. My mother always wondered why we had so much trouble growing a patch-free lawn in the backyard. My attempts to replicate cuts like this didn't help the cause.

Then, of course, there was his most famous moment as a Wolverine.

Throw the ball as high as you can, catch it clean, take off towards the fence, cut up towards the house, cut back to the fence, then make sure not to trample the garden/bench while sprinting up the imaginary sideline. I did that more times than I could count.

With Woodson, though, some moments transcended imitation even by the most imaginative of grade-schoolers. I could not fly 15 feet in the air, so I didn't attempt his Michigan State interception. I could not float for an eternity, so I was content to leave his final collegiate pick as a memory.

20 years after he first arrived in Ann Arbor, Woodson is still making awe-inspiring plays. Just two days ago, the 39-year-old met 220-pound James Starks—ten years his junior—in the open field; while Starks had a full head of steam, Woodson's perfectly placed shoulder jarred the ball loose. I watched the play unfold on my television, and while I didn't head to the nearest park to replay it, the thought crossed my mind.

As I write this, I'm sitting on the couch in my parents' house, the same I house from which I walked to the Big House with my dad on so many football Saturdays growing up, with the very backyard in which I tried with all my might to be Charles Woodson. We're sitting down to dinner soon. While sports are rarely the foremost topic of conversation in the Anbender household, there's no doubt Woodson's retirement will come up; the only question is how long we'll swap stories once it does.

Perhaps, once the food has settled, I'll sprint aside that fence one more time.

One Frame At A Time: Spike

One Frame At A Time: Spike

Submitted by Ace on December 11th, 2015 at 2:27 PM

As always, click the links/stills to open each GIF in a lightbox.

The first real hint that Spike Albrecht would exceed even the most unreasonable expectations came in the second game of the 2013 NCAA Tournament, when he threaded a left-handed bounce pass between two defenders to hit Glenn Robinson III in stride from halfcourt. Michigan's bench leapt in unison—we thought, at the time, out of shock, but in retrospect perhaps they knew before the rest of us that Spike was far from done.

Two weekends later, Spike introduced himself to the hoops world at large with his 17-point outburst against Louisville. In the years since, that performance has become less stunning, which is remarkable considering he's only been a full-time starter when injury struck the guy in front of him.

To say Spike made the most out of a limited skill set is to sell him short, because he had serious skills. This is not a pass I've seen anyone else make, certainly not in a college game, and he pulled that out as a freshman in the second weekend of the tourney. It came seemingly out of nowhere—as, quite freqently, did Spike:

Spike's greatest asset was his audacity. He'd launch a shot from a foot inside the halfcourt logo because he could do that. Once he hit such a shot and then did the Sam Cassell big balls dance; if Cassell didn't have full ownership of that move, it could've been Spike's most fitting signature. One of his greatest highlights started by accident and ended with him acting like that was the plan all along:

Despite the above, Spike appeared in constant control. He'd dribble donuts through a defense until an opportunity presented itself. He'd find that extra half-foot of space required to get off his patented one-handed granny layup. He'd leave the center no choice but to respect that damn granny layup and commit a moment before Spike would drop a deft pass to the man the center had left all alone. He'd pick your pocket or your passing lane, then lead a highlight-worthy fast break. He'd weave through the defense and dish off a pass to a player he couldn't possibly have seen:

And, yes, Spike did the proverbial gritty stuff. In his second-to-last game, a rote blowout of Houston Baptist, he didn't hesitate to lay out for a loose ball—as he'd done so many times before—landing on two bad hips that were in even worse shape than we thought. The whole team ran over to pick him up. He shook it off as if it was nothing, then gave us one last spectacular play:

When Spike was on the court, odds were he'd put a smile on your face. He was just as likely to do so off the court:

If there's a player that embodies why we watch the college game, it's Spike Albrecht. While his career ended too soon, it contained more than we ever could've imagined.

Taiwanese Animation Finds The Buttzone

Taiwanese Animation Finds The Buttzone

Submitted by Ace on November 27th, 2015 at 10:57 AM

Behold the only preview of The Game you'll need until Brian posts his actual preview in an hour or so.

If you aren't familiar with Next Media Animation, yes, it's supposed to be that ridiculous

We are forever indebted for this:

Two more GIFs that might come in handy: a sobbing Ezekiel Elliott runs into M's bulldozer D-line and Jabrill Peppers dances after tossing Urban Meyer atop the cube.

Either way ... GO BLUE!!