Henne signs with Jacksonville

Henne signs with Jacksonville

Submitted by CalJr3000 on March 14th, 2012 at 9:35 PM

Per Tania Ganguli's Twitter, Chad Henne has signed with the Jags for two years.  Adam Schefter confirms.  Not the greatest team in the world, but it does give him an awesome chance to start thanks to a very questionable Blaine Gabbert.

As Schefter reported earlier, the Jags also signed WR Laurent Robinson (Dallas) for five years/$32.5 million.  That at least gives him someone decent to throw to downfield.  It'll be sad not to see Jake Long pass protecting for Henne anymore, but maybe he can be reunited with a former WR teammate like Manningham or Braylon.

Taste of Ann Arbor - in Columbus!

Taste of Ann Arbor - in Columbus!

Submitted by UAUM on June 30th, 2011 at 3:11 PM

Come join the Central Ohio University of Michigan Alumni Association Club for a Taste of Ann Arbor on Tuesday, July 26, 2011 from 5:30-8:00 pm at the Loft at Smith Brothers Warehouse in Columbus, Ohio!

There will be complimentary food from Ann Arbor favorites including Cottage Inn Pizza and Stucchi’s Ice Cream, as well as appetizers and other desserts.  Additionally, there will be a 50-50 raffle and auction featuring:

- tickets to Michigan Football games (ND, OSU, etc.)
- tickets to various Columbus events
- Michigan memorabilia and books
- MDEN gear

Admission is $20 for AAUM members and $25 for non-members.  All proceeds go towards the Central Ohio UM Alumni Club’s Sophomore Scholarship Fund.

Click here for more details and to register now!

If you have any questions, please contact Samir Dahman at [email protected].

First Lamarr, now Charles is on the ESPN frontpage

First Lamarr, now Charles is on the ESPN frontpage

Submitted by All Aboard on January 30th, 2011 at 12:06 AM

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/playoffs/2010/columns/story?columnist=chadiha_jeffri&id=6071466

Another Michigan defender makes the frontpage, awesome to see attention go to a few of the best Michigan defenders in recent memory. Considering that the SB is essentially Woodson v. Woodley for us non-PIT/GB Michigan fans, I'm torn. But I'll be rooting for Chuck, he's my all-time favorite.

Baseball: Goings and Comings, Hello: Jake Engels

Baseball: Goings and Comings, Hello: Jake Engels

Submitted by formerlyanonymous on June 23rd, 2010 at 2:02 AM

Goings. Most of Michigan's players have signed their contracts so far, and there's also been at least one player sign on with an independent league. A breakdown:

To my understanding, all of the MLB draft picks are now currently signed and on their respective rosters (even if Burgoon may not show up on MiLB just yet). Dufek will also try to extend his playing days, by playing in the independent league. He may get lucky and get a free agent type deal to go to the MiLB, he may not. May he be lucky enough to get his wish.

I imagine this is probably it as far as players with a baseball future. Katzman may show up on some independent league roster, but the rest of the seniors might just be done.

In another note, Miller may have a chance to face Berset as early as next week as Helena hosts Billings for a three game set starting Monday June 28. For those of you in exotic Montana, perhaps a trip could be in store for you? I mean, what else are you going to do in Montana? Fight grizzly bears (I'm reminded of a long-lost haloscan thread on the merits of the grizzly bear population in Montana and the political risk of pissing them off.)? No, I thought not.

Comings. jake engels With the somewhat unexpected early departure of Matt Miller, and with all of the other juniors that were drafted leaving, Michigan had at least one athlete worth giving a scholarship to, so HELLO Jake Engels. Engels comes to Michigan from Portage Northern High School, where he had quite the career:

Engels went 24-7 while earning three varsity letters at Portage Northern. During his senior campaign, he went 11-3 with a sparkling 0.89 earned-run average and 68 strikeouts to lead the Huskies to a district title. As a sophomore, he went 6-3 and earned All-SMAC honorable mention. In his first season as a letterwinner, Engels went 7-1 with a 2.66 ERA and was tabbed to the All-SMAC Central Division team. Engels also excelled in the classroom, earning honor roll each year and high honors during his senior year.

I have to imagine that Engels has had a scholarship offer in the bag for quite a while now. The Big Ten doesn't allow over signing, which means Engels wasn't allowed to be offered a scholarship until one of the early exiting juniors signed their pro contract. Now that all of them are out, Engels is in. The above picture is Jake and the District Trophy, partially won on his arm.

In terms of Jake's role next season, I wouldn't be surprised to see him redshirt. Pitching is a premium, and with him not being a drafted player, I think it's reasonable to think he won't bolt after three years.

Comings, with more awards. Also on the baseball recruiting front is the recent release of the All-Michigan teams. Michigan baseball recruits Alex Lakatos (previous post here) was the biggest winner, making the All-Michigan Dream team and Division 1 First Team. Lakatos was generally ridiculous on the mound this season, including a no-hitter where he struck out 19. Michigan was also represented with the previously mentioned Jake Engels on the Division 1 First Team and outfielder Zach Fish on the Division 2 First Team.

Fish (previous post here) also got some publicity in the Kalamazoo Gazette All-Michigan article:

Fish batted .473 with 12 home runs, nine doubles and four triples. The junior shortstop, committed to the University of Michigan, totaled 61 hits, 60 runs and 57 RBIs, and was walked 31 times (11 intentionally). He also was 27-for-29 in stolen-base attempts, and as a right-handed pitcher finished 6-1 with a 2.33 ERA and six saves.

"I think a lot of (the run-producing stats) don't really fall on me. I think they fall on the guys that were ahead of me (in the order), and at the end of the order, too," said Fish, who was coming off a monster weekend with the Cincinnati-based Midland Redskins, going 12-for-18 with one homer, a triple, three doubles and 10 RBIs.

I'm liking those numbers. He's very likely to make a push into the order next season with LaMarre and Nick Urban both graduating. If he can put up numbers like that, Michigan will be in great shape.

Summer Ball. The summer seasons all kicked off over the last two weeks. Many of Michigan's players are doing pretty well. Garrett Stephens, Patrick Biondi, and Kevin Krantz (back from his broken thumb) have lit up my RSS feed with good news. I'll have a list of everyone's location as soon as I track everyone down.

Amani Toomer Running NYC Marathon for Charity

Amani Toomer Running NYC Marathon for Charity

Submitted by Marley Nowell on June 19th, 2010 at 7:12 PM

http://backporch.fanhouse.com/2010/06/19/amani-toomer-talks-haynesworth…

Amani Toomer talks about lazy Albert and running the NYC Marathon.  In terms of Michigan relevance around the 7:20 mark the questioner asks Toomer about "the state of Michigan Football."  Toomer responded by saying "its not good, its really not good" and then changes the subject.

Baseball: Alumnus Kevin Cislo Coaching at Chelsea

Baseball: Alumnus Kevin Cislo Coaching at Chelsea

Submitted by formerlyanonymous on May 12th, 2010 at 10:43 PM

Michigan lost in one of the ugliest types of college games today by a score of 13-10. Both teams should be embarassed how ugly that was. Michigan should be more embarassed for losing. So instead of looking at that game, I bring you news of one of last year's alumni.

Kevin Cislo saw his senior year come to a sad ending, having to sit out with a shoulder injury that ended his playing days. He's moved on nicely, now coaching at Chelsea High School.

“I got involved with CHS through Coach Welton,” he said. “We worked at (University of Michigan baseball) coach Maloney's camps in the summer and winter and got to know each other pretty well. He knew I was going into education, so I asked him if it would be possible to do my student teaching at Chelsea. I did my student teaching with Marta Learman in the fall while helping coach the JV football team. Things worked out so I could stay in Chelsea during the spring, which let me help with the baseball team.”

It's good to hear he's still able to contribute to the game that he loves. And who knows, maybe one day we'll see him coaching again at the Fish.

Baseball: Larkin Press Conference

Baseball: Larkin Press Conference

Submitted by formerlyanonymous on April 28th, 2010 at 6:51 PM

I sat in on a teleconference with Barry Larkin hosted by MGoBlue today. Lots of interesting stuff discussed. Barry will be the 6th number retired in Michigan baseball history, with the ceremony happening at Saturday's Ohio State game at 5:45pm. Several former Michigan stars should be in attendance and coach Bud Middaugh.

MGoBlue has full audio for the Buckeyes who can't read.

On the honor of having his number 16 retired:

This is my first number retirement. This is certainly special. I got the call – Rich Maloney called me up, told me they were going to do it. Once again, just an honor. Just a little sad that some of the people that were very instrumental in me come to Michigan, mainly Bo Schembechler, is not around to see this happen. I had an opportunity when I was inducted into the Hall of Honor a couple years ago and I spoke to him before that. It was my last conversations I had with him. It was kind of a sad thing. We had this joke going on about how when I came to Michigan I came to play football.

He used to come out and heckle me during baseball workouts. He'd be at baseball work outs. I used to get on him about that. I told him alright, someday I'll tell this story. I told the story when I was inducted into the Hall of Honor, but he wasn't there to defend himself. But I'm very excited about it.

On being recruited as a football player:

Bo came down to recruit my brother who was a year before me..

Bo spent so much time, he forged a real nice relationship with my mom. And he told my mom he would come down was going to get the next Larkin kid that came out and that was me. He came down and did the whole recruiting thing. He told me about the University of Michigan and told me he would even allow me play baseball.

He told me that Michigan football – no one came to Michigan to play baseball. He told me also that a couple guys were going to leave out of school as juniors. they came back for their senior years.  He told me he was going to redshirt me my freshman year.

At that particular time was the first time I was able to just concentrate on one particular game, one particular sport. My learning curve was vertical basically. I got a lot better a lot quicker. And after that year he let me play baseball, I had to tell him that I decided I was not going to play football…

If you didn't know Bo, you certainly didn't want to see that side of him when you tell him you aren't going to contribute to his program. It was nothing nice. It was like a bull in a china shop. If he was going to come across me he would  absolutely kill me. I tell this story a lot. It was a fabulous relationship. It was really a big part of why I came to Michigan.

On his relationships with the University even through the Reds organization:

My rookie year in the big leagues, when I left Michigan and went to play in Cincinnati, I didn't really talk to any body. We were in Wrigley Field, not to far away from Michigan, and I want to say some guys from the baseball team came up to the game. But without me talking to anyone, the organ player, who normally plays this organ music – baseball music- he played Hail to the Victors when I came up when I was coming up getting ready to hit. I thought that was the most absolute coolest thing ever. I didn't ask him to do it, I didn't have to ask him to do it. It was as if people were just so in tune to it… It was just amazing. I'm so proud to just have attended the University.

On the #16:

The number 16 was just the number that they gave me. I actually wore number 11 growing up. Bill Freehan had that number and that number was retired. The other number that I wore was number 14. That was for Pete Rose. Number 16 was just the number they gave me my freshman year and there is no real story behind as far as I know.

On Bo's opinion that baseball was a mistake:

Bo, he is… No. [laughs] He did not acknowledge. I'm not even sure it was a mistake. He told me often when he would heckle me that he could strike me out anyway. He was a lefty and had a nice little curveball, supposedly. That's what he told me. He said he would intimidate me. He would throw me up and in, get me off the plate, throw a back door curve ball. Strike me out just about every single time.

On coming up north:

People ask me why I went up there to play baseball. I didn't. I went up there to play football. That was really my intent… I knew that I wanted to go to Michigan… One of the things that really attracted me to Michigan was the helmets. It was wanting to wear the winged helmets and be part of the program. I loved it. I went up there because of the condition of the football program and that they had a good baseball program as well. It really solidified things for me.

On his experiences as a student:

It was great. I lived in West Quad my freshman year. Casey close was my roommate. it was great. a controlled environment. There were baseball people around us […] I had great people, great football people around me […]. It was a great campus and a great program to be a part of. I really enjoyed it.

On Bo heckling:

He didn't really sit around the batting cage. […] Bo's M.O. was this. Bo would come to practice on his way the indoor football field. […] He would take a circuitous route, he would walk out of the Academic offices, walk outside of the baseball stadium, inside the first base line, find the plate, down the third baseline, heckle me, and then walk out into the indoor football building.

He wouldn't sit around there while everybody was around. He would go and kind of stand in the stands. It was funny because we would be out there a lot of times, and it would be cold, it'd be windy, it'd be raining or whatever. Bo would wear a parka. He would look like Darth Vader with his parka pulled over his head. He would walk in and he would yell at me, "LARKIN!" and I'm going "oh my goodness, who in the world is that?"

Eventually, I convinced my teammates that it was Bo. So I had one time, I had one of the kids go up into the stands and go look up underneath the parka. He came back, he was like "this is unbelievable, that really is Bo Schembechler."

On if he would ever talk back to Bo:

I would just kind of laugh, or look at him and do whatever. But not really. It was Bo for crying out loud. It was Bo Schembechler.

On his relationship with Bud Middaugh:

I credit Bud a lot on giving me the foundations. He helped me out tremendously. He also was very caring and supportive. It was a little different being the head baseball coach because he was the boss. The relationship was a little more challenging than my relationship with Bo. Bo would joke a lot with me, but Bud, the success of his program was predicated on me going out and doing well. It was a little different relationship, but definitely one of caring.

He and his wife Dee, they opened up their home to us players. He took the time, he knew I was the only African American player on the team at the time. There were some issues that came up that he was very sensitive to. Once again, he was a person that opened up everything to me and just made me feel comfortable. I give him a lot of credit for – almost like tough love. Helping me out, helping me grow as a person, challenging me, and being sensitive to different issues that I was faced with.

On Ohio State as a Bigger Rival:

It was always a thing for Ohio State being the fact that I was from Cincinnati. People ask me all the time why I didn't go to Ohio State. I didn't get recruited by Ohio State. My college roommate Casey Close, who was player of the year in baseball one year, he didn't get recruited by Ohio State either, and he grew up in Worthington, a suburb of Columbus. There was always being from Ohio, there was always that Ohio State-Michigan thing.

But rivalry was the rivalry. The rivalry was always the best team of the time. Whoever we had to beat to win the game was who we had to beat to win the game. As a player, I didn't buy into getting up a little more for that particular series. […]

I thought you play the way you play regardless of who you play. You don't try to create any more. I thought that was a media driven thing, and now that I'm part of the media, I understand that it really is. It wasn't anything extra special other than the fact that a lot of people would bring it to my attention that I was from Ohio and playing against the [sarcasm] Ohio State University.

On future hopes:

I think one thing that I'd love to be able to do is say that I am a member of the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame. That's one thing that I can honestly say that I really want to happen. All of the other accolades are fine; those are great. But to be in the class of the best of the best, that's somewhere that I definitely want to be. 

As far as an analyst, I really enjoy the opportunity to teach. That's what I really love to do with baseball – I love to instruct and teach. I do work as an analyst with the [MLB] Network. I also do some cultural exchange programs. I build a baseball academy. I instruct kids – travel the world instructing kids. My last tour was in Taiwan. I have an education company. We've combined education and sports to make it a fun, learning experience.

I just want to stay involved. I really enjoy the game of baseball. I enjoy teaching the game of baseball. I enjoy pointing out how difficult it is, and enlightening people on why things happen the way they do during a game. I don't think there are enough attention paid to the fundamentals of sport. I just see this as an opportunity to drive home the attention and due diligence to that dynamic of fundamentals.

Baseball: More Larkin Love (MGoBlue)

Baseball: More Larkin Love (MGoBlue)

Submitted by formerlyanonymous on April 27th, 2010 at 6:15 PM

MGoBlue went with their Barry Larkin post, quite a bit more Michigan centric, and you know, written by a writer. Much better than mine. You should read it.

Larkin Stays a Wolverine Throughout Storied Major League Career

A little taste:

It was a Friday in August at Wrigley Field, and Barry Larkin was about to step to the plate for his first-ever road game at-bat in the major leagues. The 22-year-old, just a few months removed from one of the most storied careers in Michigan baseball history, had been called up to play for the Cincinnati Reds a week before.

As the announcer introduced the rookie and the Wrigley Field organist started to play, Larkin suddenly heard the first few booming notes of "The Victors" resonate through the ballpark. He looked up, trying to find the source of the sound, and saw his teammates waving at him.

"I just kind of thought, 'All right! That is cool as heck,'" Larkin said. "I can't tell you how extensive the tradition of the block 'M' reaches. The extent of it, it's just amazing."

He couldn't have guessed on that day in 1986 that four years later, the tradition of the block 'M' would extend to his 1990 World Series championship team, on which Larkin played with former Michigan teammates Chris Sabo (1981-83) and Hal Morris (1984-86). Sabo, in full uniform and holding a coffee mug, would sit in the Reds clubhouse a few hours before Sunday games and blast "The Victors" through the clubhouse loudspeakers.

Michigan Baseball Greats – Barry Larkin

Michigan Baseball Greats – Barry Larkin

Submitted by formerlyanonymous on April 27th, 2010 at 1:15 PM

This weekend's critical series against Big Ten co-leaders Ohio State has a side story that deserves just as much attention as a battle for the Big Ten title. Michigan's greatest shortstop, Barry Larkin, will have his number 16 jersey retired on Saturday afternoon.

Barry was born in Cincinnati in 1964, a city that he would forever be tied to. He grew up and attended Moeller High School, a great school in Ohio sport history. It produeced not just Larkin, but Ken Griffey, Jr., and someone many Michigan fans hold dear: Gerry Faust. At Moeller, Larkin set the school record for batting average for a career at .482, hitting 12 triples and 11 homers, stealing 26 bases.

He would win the team MVP as a senior in 1982 and was drafted in the 2nd round by the hometown Cincinnati Reds. Larkin chose not to sign with the Reds however, and instead enrolled at the University of Michigan to play football. Yes, football. Following the 1982 season, he informed then coach Bo Schembechler that he would also be trying out for the baseball team. That was the last time Larkin would be part of the football team, as he became a regular immediately on the baseball squad.

On the diamond, Larkin made an immediate impact. The 1983 season would see Larkin named the Big Ten Tournament player of the year and make Baseball America's Freshman First Team. That season was also a College World Series for the Wolverines. In game one against Maine, Larkin had two doubles in a 6-5 win. Michigan would ultimately be eliminated by Texas in the semi-final. Michigan's final record was 50-9, the highest winning percentage by any Wolverine team ever.

larkin at bat At the CWS

That wasn't Larkin's last trip to Omaha. [Ed: continued after the jump.]