I'm One of the Lucky Ones

I'm One of the Lucky Ones Comment Count

Ace October 9th, 2018 at 10:59 AM

TLDR: I've launched a GoFundMe and could use your help.

A little over seven years ago, in my eighth month at home waiting for the perfect job to fall out of the sky, something that would fit both my passion and my needs, a job posting went up on this site. I'd been reading MGoBlog since high school; now I was hastily assembling a resumé for a full-time job taking over for two talented and productive part-timers who'd secured full-time sportswriting gigs themselves.

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HAIL TO THE VICTORS 2018

HAIL TO THE VICTORS 2018 Comment Count

Brian June 6th, 2018 at 1:06 PM

HAIL TO THE VICTORS is 128 pages of Michigan football content, jam-packed with information, erudition, salt, photographs, small circular avatars indicating how you should feel about upcoming opponents, rosters that guess wildly at appropriate weights, history, more photographs, diagrams, side boxes, and a ham sandwich*.

*[ham sandwich not included unless you put a ham sandwich in yours]

THE TEAM THE TEAM THE TEAM

The Team The Team The Team

Brian Cook of this here site previews every position group, provides an overall outlook, and does not assert that Shea Patterson had lost his job to a JUCO transfer at Ole Miss.

THE ENEMY THE ENEMY THE ENEMY

image (3)

A comprehensive survey of the toughest schedule in college football by Ace Anbender, with contributions from Seth Fisher (MSU, Maryland, Wisconsin), Bryan MacKenzie (Notre Dame), Ben Jones, sports editor of StateCollege.com (Penn State), and Kyle Jones, X's & O's writer for Eleven Warriors (Ohio State).

TWISTED BLUE STEEL

Twisted Blue Steel (1)

Named for Bo's own description of the stuff he's made from, this is the section where we examine Michigan's material.

THE TOUGH DECISION. Adam Schnepp shares the story of Karan Higdon through interviews with the senior running back and the people who know him.

GETTING IT. Orion Sang interviews walk-on receiver Nate Schoenle on his path to playing time amidst two star-studded classes.

THE FAULT IN OUR STARS. Ancient bloggerati Michael Elkon of Braves & Birds and SBNation examines the link between recruiting success and competing for championships, and finds examples of other programs who've had to survive a blip or two.

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Welcome To MGoBlog 3.0

Welcome To MGoBlog 3.0 Comment Count

Brian June 5th, 2018 at 7:03 PM

SORRY, SORRY, TRYING TO REDESIGN IT

Fine, we'll not do the geocities site for the rest of time. I hope you're happy with a background that does not include animated gifs and zero Victors midis in your life, you philistines.

Anyway, this is the New Site. There will inevitably be some hiccups as with any large complicated activity. Please feel free to email or comment about them and we'll look into it. Here is a bolded alter-ego discussion about it.

Why did it take so long?

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Depth Chart By Class Updated

Depth Chart By Class Updated Comment Count

Brian January 5th, 2018 at 12:27 PM

37266565725_cd8455398e_z (1)

[Eric Upchurch]

An updateable version of this lives under useful stuff in perpetuity, but we bump a new copy of it to the front page annually to remind people it exists. Now it's more important than ever because it actually contains redshirt information, unlike the official roster.

Note that Otis Reese is unsigned and has not made it to the "freshmen" column; all other recruits have, even also-unsigned Ronnie Bell, because he's indicated his recruitment is not open and he would have signed except for his Missouri State basketball LOI.

Positional designations can be fuzzy, of course.

MICHIGAN FOOTBALL DEPTH BY CLASS 2018

Position

Commits

Freshmen
(c/o 2022)
Sophomores
(c/o 2021)
Juniors
(c/o 2020)
Seniors
(c/o 2019)
QB
(5)
    
B. Peters* S. Patterson
RB
(7)
    

K. Walker*
O. Samuels  

C. Evans K. Higdon
FB
(3)
VanSumeren
    
J. Wangler*
WR
(5)
K. Crawford  
Slot
(4)
 
N. Schoenle*#
TE
(7)
    
N. Eubanks*
S. McKeon*
TJ Wheatley*
Z. Gentry*
OT
(8)
    
    
J. Bushell-Beatty*
OG
(5)
J. Honigford*
C. Filiaga*
A. Vastardis*#    
 
C
(1)
 
    
C. Ruiz  
    
DT
(4)
  D. Jeter* M. Dwumfour*
    
L. Marshall*
NT
(3)
 
P. Paea*     A. Solomon
    
B. Mone*
SDE
(5)
C. Hinton   
C. Kemp* R. Gary
 
WDE
(5)
S. Herron L.Vilain* R. Johnson*
K. Paye
R. Jones*
SLB / Viper
(3)
    
J. Uche* K. Hudson N. Furbush*
ILB
(6)
C. Thomas J. Ross D. Gil
D. Bush Jr.
CB
(7)
M. Sims
Gem. Green
L. Hill B. Watson*
FS
(5)
    
J. Kelly-Powell
B. Hawkins
    
SS
(2)
 
    
J. Woods
J. Metellus
J Glasgow*#
 
P/K/LS
(2)
 
    
    
Q. Nordin*
B. Robbins
W. Hart*#
C. Cheeseman*#
 
 
Total
    4 32
    25
18
    12

projected starters in bold, returning starters in italics.
walk-ons denoted with # unless they've clearly graduated from that distinction,
redshirts denoted with *, burned redshirts for freshman with !.
   

Allotted: 87+1/85

Recruits: TBD after signing day.

Like "YMRMFSPA" in this site's recruiting profiles, it doesn't say Kaleb Ringer is Sam Sword or even that we think he's a future Sam Sword, just that if he were to reach the outer bounds of reasonable expectation a senior starting Ringer may resemble Sword. For most the original recruiting YMRMFSPA is listed, though I've updated many of the upperclassmen to reflect renewed expectations.

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MGoBlog 3.0: Let’s Go to Beta!

MGoBlog 3.0: Let’s Go to Beta! Comment Count

Seth January 5th, 2018 at 10:02 AM

image

that is not the final banner, obviously

You’ve been asking about the updated website. When we couldn’t hit the preseason target the project was put on the slow burner during the season and shifted resources back to propping up the current site, but with that over we’re going to be picking up the ball and running.

The last few months behind the scenes we were getting the major bugs ironed out. The next step is we’d like to invite those of you most invested in this site—the power readers and commenters if you will—to test out a beta version and help us find all the little annoying things that need to be taken care of before launch. There’s a link in the HUEL message below if you’d like to be a part of that.

Here’s HUEL:

A Letter to Loyal MGoBlogers:   

You’ve been very patient in your anticipation of a newly designed site and we’d like to thank you for that. You were teased with the new designs before the football season, and while we were hopeful to launch the site prior to the Week 1 kickoff, too much work remained and we wanted to make sure that the new site did not hamper your experience during those crucial few months.

Once we realized that a site launch would not be possible in August, we shifted our focus to stabilizing and improving the performance of the current site. Changes included:

  1. Migrating to a bigger, stronger, faster, server - Dedicated server with more memory, bandwidth, and storage than the previous server and supported 24/7 by the Nexcess support staff.

  2. Migrating podcasts to Podbean - By removing the podcasts from the site itself, we were able to prevent the site from crashing or slowing to a halt due to thousands of simultaneous downloads directly from the site.

  3. Stopping Malicious Brute Force Attacks - Over the fall there were some instances of outside IPs making constant calls to the server. All suspicious IPs were blocked, and site performance and security were improved.

After we trimmed up the current site, we picked up the momentum on the new site build. We’ve been spending our time making it as beautiful as possible for your desperate eyes, and meticulously establishing an efficient method for upgrading this massive database from Drupal 6 to Drupal 8 (That’s 2 major versions for those of you keeping score at home). The best news yet is that we’re incredibly close to being ready for testing.

In the coming weeks, select users will be receiving invitations to a private beta test of the new site. If you’re interested in being considered for participation in this beta testing period, please fill out the form below:

Private Beta Tester Application*

*Note that not all users who complete the application will be sent invitations to the beta, but we want to know who’s most interested before sending out invites.

We expect the beta period to last about 2 weeks. We will spend the following weeks fixing any issues discovered or building any new features that arise as critical from beta testing. As work progresses, you can expect another update with more details surrounding the full launch of the new site.

Thank you again for your continued patience, or lack of patience. Either way, thank you for staying loyal.

Your friendly neighborhood developers,

Human Element

Thanks again from us too for your patience.

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It's Christmas Week Here On MGoBlog

It's Christmas Week Here On MGoBlog Comment Count

Brian December 21st, 2017 at 12:33 PM

635782932146715707-LAF-Pfoot-Va-Tech-main-07

just a few days until Joe Tiller (RIP) leaves playbooks under the tree

The annual week where we don't type anything unless there's an urgent coaching search or a funny cat video has arrived, a bit early this time because the 30th and 31st are the weekend and we'd rather post our bowl preview stuff Thursday and Friday. The WTKA podcast will go up shortly, but we are otherwise out to Spend More Time With Our Families*.

But there's a basketball game tonight?

There is not. There is a controlled demolition.

image

Why we continue scheduling these games is a mystery. Michigan will win by a zillion and nothing will be learned except "Charles Matthews is good at dunking on oompa-loompas." We respectfully decline to #content about this.

But Amani Toomer?

I said good day, sir.

*[LITERALLY. Not in the Hugh Freeze way.]

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MGoBlog 3.0: An Update

MGoBlog 3.0: An Update Comment Count

Seth August 18th, 2017 at 5:29 PM

Previously: The Preview

image

Coming soon: a groundbreaking series on 40 times

Sorry this is coming on a Saturday but I just got back from Chicago and figured best to get it out sooner than later.

So as you’ve no doubt noticed, the new site is taking awhile to roll out. Yes it is still happening, but each setback has pushed back the timetable to the point where we’re getting up against the start of the season. Right now they’ve given us a very barebones dev site (above) to find all the glowing errors and make sure it feels like it should. Then we’ll have a beta version, with content from the main site, for beta users to play with. We’d rather do it right than throw out a half-baked solution.

I want to reiterate that HUEL—which is what we're finally getting Ann Arbor-based site developer Human Element to call themselves—have been awesome. A site as old as ours can develop some pretty big hurdles to modernization and previous comers were never able to get past Level 1. HUEL is now on 7, and have already worked through more unforeseen monkey wrenches than I’ve bothered to count. Without them I don’t know if this ever happens.

Jason, the CEO of Human Element, can explain it better than I can.

I want to let everyone know that both the HUEL and MGoBlog staff are diligently working on the site upgrade every day, and while it was our goal to have the new site up before the football season, software is hard. We are performing a 2-version upgrade from Drupal 6 to 8 while maintaining current required functionality, data and user history. At the same time we are adding new functionality and features as part of a complete overhaul of the user experience and site design. We have made significant progress and have solved all the major technical issues but we haven’t had the time for proper user engagement and beta testing and do not want to want to push a product that isn’t up to our quality standards.  

It is our short term goal to stabilize the existing site’s hosting (thanks Nexcess!), while finishing the last pieces of the upgrade and redesign.  We are going to use this extended time period to sync data from the current site to the new site on a schedule and allow selected BETA testers to provide feedback until both teams feel the site is ready for initial release.  We will then move into a cycle of maintenance and improvement that should continue to improve the user experience over the next few years. 

The new site will be bigger, stronger, faster—but it’s just taking a little longer than we hoped.

--Jason

You may see the site go offline at times in the middle of the nights as we prepare to shift to Nexcess servers from the one Brian and his brother built years ago.

[Couple of notes in response to prior feedback after the jump]

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MGoBlog 3.0: The Preview

MGoBlog 3.0: The Preview Comment Count

Seth June 12th, 2017 at 1:02 PM

So you’ve probably noticed the content has been a little slow this summer. Some of that’s because Hail to the Victors 2017 is taking up my life, but the other huge summer project is rebuilding this site from the ground up.

THE DEVELOPERS

We’ve been working with a local outfit named Human Element. You’ve probably passed by their Kerrytown office at the corner of Detroit and Beakes (and Division and Summit and Carey and High and… you know the junction) a thousand times. Unlike our previous attempts at redeveloping the site they’re established enough to have a team and a schedule they’ve actually managed to stick to.

unnamed

We’ve insisted they go by “HUEL” for obvious reasons.

Despite all the curveballs we could come up with from a 10-year-old site on a no longer supported platform, this is happening, and on time. I can’t recommend these guys enough.

THE NEW LOOK

Since we’re deep into the design phase, we saw no reason to keep it to ourselves. So here’s a preview of what we’re sort of going to look like in a couple of months (click each to see a larger size):

Normal front page

Front page when we
have a major feature

Inside an article

MGB Design_Home_v5 MGB Design_Home2_v5 (1) MGB Design_Article_v5 (1)

Let me say a few things about what you’re looking at:

  • No that’s not the header. That’s something one of the HUEL guys whipped up in 30 seconds. We’ve engaged MonuMental to design the new official header. That’s still in the works but his initial thoughts are encouraging:

How about Harbaugh as Conan the Barbarian on a mountain of his enemies' skulls (helmets) with background landscape and Easter eggs inspired by the last few years (Florida palm trees, Rome skyline, stacks of milk bottles) and a snarling oversized Wolverine as his companion?

Open to suggestions about what he is wielding overhead. Maybe a football exploding with light and lightning?

  • It’s going to be a lot wider, since screens have become so.
  • The front page has two modes. Normally there will be some boxes on the top with the latest football article, the latest recruiting article, the latest podcast, and a t-shirt or HTTV something from our store or our top sponsor UGP—these boxes will change based on whatever’s going on at the moment. When we have a featured article (e.g. UFR) it goes to mode 2, with the feature dominating the top and the boxes taking a break.
  • Diaries and the Board are staying put, but your login is moving to the upper-right.
  • The comments will be threaded into boxes, but after a 5 boxes they’ll stop shrinking and just appear underneath. You’ll be able to minimize a box to hide a part of the conversation and focus on the one you’re having.
  • Some users will have little icons next to their names. These will signify things like this person is the OP, or one of our staff, or a moderator, or trusted contributor. Still deciding on how many badges we need—might just be site personnel and hot users (people who recently got a lot of upvotes in that thread).
  • Your MGoPoints should carry over to the new site. Apparently the 3rd party module for that hasn’t been upgraded to Drupal 8 so we may have to create our own, but if it’s possible it will happen.
  • We’ll be moving to a new server that should be able to handle a much greater load, so this place won’t become a disaster during high traffic events.
  • Apps will be brand new and better integrated.

Your feedback is most welcome—we’re building this for you.

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