Cooper Marody's rights traded to Edmonton.

Cooper Marody's rights traded to Edmonton.

Submitted by Sambojangles on March 21st, 2018 at 2:40 PM

Saw it on twitter, link below. The better hockey fans will have to chime in on whether it increases or decreases his chances of leaving after this season. Personally, a senior year in Ann Arbor sounds better than playing for Edmonton, but who knows.

Philly gets a 3rd rounder three years after taking Marody as a sixth. I think it probably indicates how far he has come to improve his value. Winning the B1G scoring title sure helped.

https://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/oilers-acquire-rights-cooper-marody…

Rooting Interests: Tournament Week

Rooting Interests: Tournament Week

Submitted by Mercury Hayes on March 5th, 2018 at 9:05 PM

Rooting Interests: Tournament Week

Remember the many years we spent refreshing ESPN’s Bubble Watch only to be disappointed when the Tommy Amaker led teams landed in the NIT? A few years later that disappointment turned to joy when we landed a 10-seed in 2009, or an 8-seed in 2011. Now we spend our time refreshing Bracket Matrix, retweeting Ken Pomeroy and endlessly justifying our two-seed over MSU and other Midwestern squads.

As of this writing, Bracket Matrix has Michigan a 3-seed and the 12th overall team, the AP Poll has the Wolverines seventh and Ken Pomeroy has the squad ranked ninth.  Of course, none of those guarantee anything come selection Sunday. And while the committee has an obligation to put the top 16-teams as close to home as possible, that may not be logistically possible with MSU, Purdue, Cincinnati and Xavier all so close. Thankfully, other sites in Nashville and Pittsburgh give us hope.

Here are a few other things to root for this week: (note, I left out a lot of games that could impact RPI. Of course we want CMU to win the MAC and a bunch of other things, but I tried to focus on bigger games)

 

Monday

San Francisco over Gonzaga
San Francisco is so bad, chances are you don’t know their nickname. Okay, they aren’t that bad. Currently 18-14 and 4th in the WCC. Also, they are the Dons and everyone on their team is named Don. Maybe. Anyway, Gonzaga is a top-10 Ken Pom unit but a 5 in the matrix. Not a huge threat at the moment but wouldn’t it be cool if they lost anyway? Yes it would. Also lets root for BYU over St. Mary’s because we don’t need Gonzaga to beat a top 25 team this week. Maybe it won’t matter anyway, but why take the chance.

Edit: The Dons lost. Badly. But CMU won its first round matchup vs. Bowling Green. The No. 8 seed in the MAC plays No. 1 seed Buffalo on Thursday.

 

Tuesday

Pittsburgh over Notre Dame
There is like a .1% chance this happens. Pittsburgh is a winless piece of trash. But what better way to devalue MSU’s early season win over Notre Dame. The Irish were banged up all season sure, but this wouldn’t hurt.
Edit: Holy crap ND only won by three!

Anyone over Gonzaga or St. Mary’s
See above. Tuesday would be the WCC finals.
Edit: Gonzaga beat BYU

 

Wednesday

California over Stanford
Simply for RPI purposes to get Penn State to 75 and Quadrant 1.

Anyone over North Carolina
While they beat Michigan head to head, they are a two seed in the bracket matrix. Losing early to a bad team could drop them. The winner of Syracuse/Wake Forest awaits and upset here would do the trick. If this doesn’t happen Wednesday, we again root against UNC Thursday when they play Duke

Texas over Iowa State
We want the Longhorns to play themselves squarely in to the tournament. Currently projected as an 11-seed by the Bracket Matrix but with some wins, a more quality victory for UM. Also can help on Thursday.

 

Thursday

Duke over UNC
If (when) UNC wins Tuesday, they get Duke again. A loss here doesn’t hurt that much, but doesn’t help either. Likely not enough to drop them behind UM. Root for a 42-point loss, here.

Some Trashbag Team over Xavier
Hopefully woeful St. Johns beats also woeful Georgetown. I only say this because St. Johns stormed over a few top teams earlier this year. A win vs. Xavier could bump the Musketeers down a peg in the pecking order before selection Sunday.  

Texas or Iowa State over Texas Tech
Here’s where things get interesting. The Big 12 has a lot of teams around Michigan. And while Kansas or Texas Tech aren’t necessarily competing for the same region as Michigan isn’t it just easier if every other team loses? Of course, if top Big 12 teams start winning, they can rack up quality wins. Texas Tech could stay on the three line or move up. Same with other teams like West Virginia. Texas Tech getting knocked out early wouldn’t hurt.

Baylor over West Virginia
See above.

A team from Oklahoma Over Kansas
See above.

Colorado or ASU over Arizona
On the other side of the world, but also on the 4-line. Jumping Michigan with a conference title could happen. Things are gotten get sweaty either way (that’s a Sean Miller joke).

LSU over Miss. State
We lost to this LSU team in what feels like three seasons ago. It would be cool if they won four games in four days and made the loss look less bad. Also would be cool if Northwestern could go back in time and beat like four ranked teams.

 

Friday

Anyone over West Virginia or Texas Tech
Here’s where it REALLY gets interesting. While the Big 12 is still not in the Midwest (unless we are talking football expansion – bring on Oklahoma, and go home Rutgers!), we want TTU and WVU to lose. Since Kansas is on the one-line, we would root for Kansas over either team here. All things considered, if Kansas can’t win, then we maybe want Texas Tech because WVU is closer to the Midwest and we want to stay ahead of them? Honestly, this is complete guess. I have no idea.

Anyone over Xavier
This one is the conference semifinals, so not likely that a loss here would drop Xavier at all. But there are no Big Ten games to watch, what else are you going to do? Root against these guys for fun.

SMU or UCONN over Cincinnati
Maybe the UCONN women will show up and be beating Cincy 43-5 like happened in the first half of the women’s tournament on this evening (Monday). Cincy losing would be great to help position Michigan better on the two-line and keep them home.

Tulane or Temple over Wichita State
It is only fun to root for Wichita State when it is at the expense of another team, like Kansas, Kansas or Kansas. If Tulane or Temple can win, we can avoid a Wichita State/Cincy rematch which could propel a team higher.

LSU or Miss. State over Tennessee
If LSU makes it here we have two reasons to root for the Tigers. It makes Michigan look incrementally less bad, and Tennessee could get further away from the two-line opening up Nashville for another school. UT is currently on the three line, one spot above Michigan. Having them lose would definitely move Michigan up in some brackets.

Alabama or Texas A&M over Auburn
This would be a prime matchup to unclutter the top of the standings even though Auburn is in the South. But directions don’t matter to your rooting interests. Just root for the underdogs won’t you? Auburn like Tennessee is on the three line so if both lose it is triple good because it is always good when the SEC loses at things.

UCLA/Stanford or ASU over Arizona
Same as above. We just don’t want Arizona to get hot because first, Sean Miller will get sweaty and second, we want Michigan to be no. 1 in the standings and no. 1 in our hearts.

 

Saturday

Anyone vs. Cincinnati
It’s getting late early in the AAC semifinals. If Cincy wins here they will be well positioned against UM no matter what. And even a loss here may not be that bad unless it is against a terrible team – like if Pittsburgh somehow gets relegated to the AAC in the next 5 days.

Anyone vs. Wichita State
Somewhat the same as above.

Random SEC Yokels over Auburn and Tennessee
Auburn and Tennessee are on opposite sides of the bracket so they could both end up playing on Saturday and Sunday. The further they go the worse it is for Michigan. So if they can lose to some terrible team that got hot (Georgia?) then that wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world. If both teams make the finals, I don’t know what you root for. Maybe a player walkout/NCAA protest?

 

Sunday

Cincinnati vs. Wichita State
If this happens, I think we want Cincinnati here. While it wouldn’t be ideal for Michigan, we also don’t want to get jumped by Wichita State. I’m not sure it would happen, but this is MGOBLOG, we plan for the worst!

Ken Pom/Bracket Matrix over the Committee
We know Ken Pom loves him some UM. But will the committee? Let’s hope so.

TLDR: Root for all the underdogs unless Kansas and Cincy get hot in which case, root for them to beat down other solid squads like Wichita State, Texas Tech and West Virginia.

O Ye Of Little Faith!

O Ye Of Little Faith!

Submitted by MGlobules on October 16th, 2017 at 1:48 PM

You're a mealy-mouthed bunch of ant-covered tripe, the lot of ya's! Cheese-eating surrender monkeys all! Of course we're going to win on Saturday! Take your wimp fest and rot in hell. 

Those of you who aren't predisposed to give up on your football team before the game begins come with me! There are cheeseburgers and beautiful damsels over the horizon! Some of us are going there! Bye Felicia!

Late Season Development Under JB

Late Season Development Under JB

Submitted by Mercury Hayes on February 25th, 2017 at 10:52 PM

Player development has been a reoccurring bright spot for the Michigan basketball program in the past decade. Making the most of 3-star recruits or overlooked talent has been a staple of John Beilein’s teams. Coaching up Trey Burke to the title game and getting Stauskus to the league as a top-10 pick stand out the most.

But another trend has stood out to me after carefully watching recent Michigan teams and that’s late season player development. Each year it seems as if there is an underclassman or two who are nowhere to be found midway through the season – then late February happens. Emerging underclassmen have been an interesting barometer for future success. Look no further than a few current starters.

Last year at this time, Moritz Wagner was in the middle of a stretch where he played one minute across five games. Michigan lost four of those games. Two weeks later, he scored nine points in a BTT win over Indiana before logging 22 minutes against Tulsa in the NCAAs. Against Tulsa, Wagner had 8 rebounds, displayed nice athleticism with post moves and active defense hands. Although he didn’t fill the stat sheet, he showed promise in tournament games vs. Indiana, Notre Dame and Purdue. That momentum carried into this year and was on display today when he dropped 22 first half points against the biggest frontcourt in the conference. It was among the most impressive performances I remember seeing from a big man.

Wagner wasn’t alone last year. To a lesser extent Kam Chatman played some big minutes. In 2015-2016 Chatman only averaged 2.8  points in about seven minutes per game. Yet he was on the court in the waning minutes of Michigan’s upset of Indiana. We know how that went down. One shot doesn’t make a player – but player’s don’t hit winning shots from the bench. Chatman’s place on the floor mean’s he earned Beilein’s trust. A closer look at his box scores shows his minutes nearly doubled in mid February. Would have been interesting to see how he would have turned out.

More notably, you may remember Caris LeVert burning his redshirt and being an end of bench guy during Michigan’s title run. He was the team's 8th or 9th man depending on where you place Horford, which is notable considering Michigan’s rotation is usually about seven or eight men. Beilein saw something. And of course through a combination of departures and an offseason training program, LeVert came back the next year to log more than 30 minutes per game – a huge jump similar to what we saw from DJ Wilson between this year and last.

So why is this important now? Lurking in the shadows of Wagner, Walton and to a lesser extent, Wilson’s great resurgence is Xavier Simpson. A month ago, he was seemingly never on the court, or when he was it wasn’t notable. Recently, he can be seen gaining more confidence, running fast breaks, making threes and occasionally taking it strong to the hole. It isn’t much yet, but if history tells us anything Simpson may be figuring things out – which bodes well for the future squad which will have a major hole to fill with Walton graduating.

OT: What are your other interests?

OT: What are your other interests?

Submitted by MGJS SuperKick Party on August 2nd, 2016 at 10:16 AM
We're getting near the end of the OT system, and Nike had passed us by until 1 pm... But I was wondering, what are everyone's interests outside of Michigan Athletics? I am an avid golfer, I used to better than I am now, but I can still hold my own. I know more about golf clubs than I would like to admit. I love Walt Disney World. It's one of my favorite places on planet earth. I actually listen to multiple Disney Podcasts during the day. Craft beer and coffee are fun "hobbies", but are expensive.

An MGoBlog / Softball Thank You

An MGoBlog / Softball Thank You

Submitted by South Bend Wolverine on June 5th, 2016 at 3:33 PM

In the wake of today's heartbreaker against FSU, I'd like if I may to extend a few "thank you"s here at the end of the 2016 softball season.

First, a massive thank you to all of the players, and especially the seniors.  They've given us so much to cheer, shout, and laugh about over the last few years, and did so during a time when not a lot else in the Athletic Department was doing so.  We just watched the final performance of Sierra Romero, the best there ever was, but there's a whole team around her as well that has been absolutely outstanding.  The magnitude of the disappointment today is 100% a factor of how much they've made us expect of them.

Second, a huge thank you from me personally to MGoBlog.  Brian, for giving me the space to publish my pieces about the team here, and Seth & Bryan Fuller for helping me out a lot with my post-season articles.  As I've mentioned before, when I was a kid it was always my dream to works in sports media (I wanted to be an announcer, and drove my parents nuts by commentating on my EA Sports video games).  My career has gone a different way, but it's been a privilege to get to play around a little with that dream from years ago.

Finally, thank you to all of you nuts who have packed the game threads from day 1 all the way up through the last out in OKC.  It's great to have a community here that share my off-beat passion for college softball.  We'll all be coming together again pretty soon come February.

Go Blue, and Hail to the Victors.

Softball thrashes Spartans in fall ball finale

Softball thrashes Spartans in fall ball finale

Submitted by South Bend Wolverine on October 8th, 2015 at 1:39 AM

Michigan softball concluded fall exhibition play last night with a trip to East Lansing.  In their first fall match-up, MSU scored the only 2 runs Michigan had given up in fall play, and the Wolverines' defense was not about to let that happen again, especially with recently-graduate star pticher Haylie Wagner watching from the stands!  All three pitchers (Blanco, Driesenga, and Betsa) saw action, and they combined for a complete-game shut-out.

On offense, today was a chance for the young guns to try their hand at college ball.  Freshmen Sobczak, Alexander, Peters, and Canfield all got starts, and the inclusion of Falk & Blanco as well made it a majority-underclassmen line-up.  Birthday-girl Kelsey Susalla was the lone senior in the order, and she was without doubt the star of the day.  She hit an RBI single in the 1st, a solo HR in the 3rd, and another RBI single in the 7th, going 3-3 with 3 RBI on the day.

The offense as a whole did not completely break out until the 7th, when Michigan plated 4 runs to open up and 8-0 lead, but with the quality of Michigan's pitching, the outcome was never in doubt.  It appears from the twitter feed that a few substitutions were made along the way, not all of which were necessarily mentioned (Swearingen got in the action somewhere along the line).

One item of interest is Abby Ramirez playing the lead-off role.  Bonnie Tholl talked about this as a possibility on WTKA recently, and it's definitely something the coaches are going to play around with.  Last season, Ramirez hit in the 9-spot and did an excellent job turning over the line-up with a .446 OBP on the strength of slap-hitting and speed.  The coaches seem to think she's ready to shoulder a little more of the load & a little more of the spotlight this season.  At the end of the day her role will be similar to last year - setting the table for the murderers' row of power hitters Michigan can send to the plate.

The only sad news on the night is the fact that we have no new softball content coming until 2016!  Thankfully, Harbaugh has our full attention at the moment, and the winter sports are just about to get underway, so we should be able to make it to spring.  Even a snow-lover like myself, however, will be eagerly awaiting the warming temperatures that signal a new season of Michigan softball!

Change one play

Change one play

Submitted by South Bend Wolverine on April 2nd, 2015 at 4:00 PM

A friend linked this brief article on Facebook, and I thought it might be a fun offseason hypothetical to kick around for a bit.  The gist of the article is, if you could change one single play in the history of sports, what would it be?

For me, there are two close contenders.  First, have us make that late field goal against OSU in the year of the tie & subsequent illegal "vote". Bo then gets the best shot he'd ever have at a national crown. Second, I'd say change the ruling on the goal review from the UMD National Championship loss in hockey back in 2011. Shawn Hunwick gets his crown, and the greatest underdog story in sports history has its perfection completion.

What do you guys think?

http://deadspin.com/if-you-could-change-the-outcome-of-one-play-which-w…

OT - Drink Away Your Sorrows Thread - Drinking Thread.

OT - Drink Away Your Sorrows Thread - Drinking Thread.

Submitted by MGJS SuperKick Party on September 28th, 2014 at 7:12 PM

OT or Not - Michigan has inspired my drinking on a Sunday. 

What are you drinking? 

I got a bottle of Clown Shoes Ride the Lion that I'm about to go in on... What are you guys using to pretend this Hoke situation/coaching tenure never happened?