Michigan Softball 2016 Season Preview

Michigan Softball 2016 Season Preview

Submitted by South Bend Wolverine on February 9th, 2016 at 2:00 PM

[Bumped (and added some photos) because it's good and so is our softball team. --Seth]


Sprinkle the cheese

It’s hard to put the experience of Michigan’s 2015 softball season into words.  It was totally unique in so many ways.  Michigan fans were desperate for something to go right after hockey, basketball, and football all came up well short of pre-season expectations.  Jim Harbaugh was making headlines, but concrete results were still months away, and the Michigan community was still convalescing from its long bout of Brandonitis.  It was the perfect time for niche sport to make a bid for mainstream status, as fans needed something, anything to go right, to make things feel like Michigan again.

Into this void stepped a group of twenty young women, swinging bats and making pizza as they blasted their way through the country and the Big Ten, into the record books and Maize and Blue hearts nationwide.  The team combined absurd offensive production and strong pitching with an unmatched rootability factor.  Whether on TV or in person, this team was fun.  When Lauren Haeger’s Gators bounced them in the last game of the season, it felt like an injustice, just like Trey Burke missing out on his crown or the Legend of Shawn Hunwick falling short against Minnesota-Duluth.

The difference between those crimes and this one, however, is that Michigan has a chance to put things right.  Almost everyone is back from the 2015 squad, and there’s no question that they’ve been working harder than ever all offseason to earn what was denied them a year ago.  It’s a new year with fresh faces and stiff competition, but this is a team on a mission.  Below, we’ll break down roster changes, offense and defense, and the opposition Michigan will face in the season ahead.  2016 isn’t going to be 2015 all over again, and Hutch and her crew are smart enough not to try to make it that.  It just might be a little bit better.

[Hit THE JUMP to see what that team lost and what to expect from this one]

Carol Hutchins' Michigan girls know how to have fun

Carol Hutchins' Michigan girls know how to have fun

Submitted by justingoblue on May 29th, 2015 at 5:41 PM

This piece on M softball in The Detroit News yesterday is interesting, and it's definitely not a stretch to think Harbaugh is looking to create a program identity similar to what Hutch has built in her 31 year tenure and somewhat detailed in the article.

For those that aren't going to read the article, that basically comes down to fun, excellence, and playing for a coach with a tough love reputation.

Hutch (on dancing and leading the wave):

The music comes on and that's how they stay loose, and we let them do it as long as they don't get out of control or do any of that dirty dancing. It's fun to be on the field and it's fun for the players to be with their teammates. I feel like that's been a trademark of Michigan softball. People who come to our games say, 'I love to watch you play -- the kids have so much fun.' We smile a lot and we win a lot. And I believe we win because we have fun.

CC: Dennis Norfleet threads.

Megan Betsa:

I knew Hutch was intimidating, I knew she was fierce and intense – just from watching that on TV, I wasn't expecting that to change. I was only expecting that to get harder, more difficult. But she's tough on us because she loves us and she wants us to be successful. She wants us to leave here as great Michigan women.

Best Pizza in Michigan, Mani Osteria & Bar Ann Arbor

Best Pizza in Michigan, Mani Osteria & Bar Ann Arbor

Submitted by umhero on November 21st, 2013 at 10:19 AM

For those of you local to Ann Arbor or planning to visit for The Game. Mani Osteria & Bar was named the best pizza in Michigan by Mlive.  They visited 33 reader submitted restaurants around the state and chose the Ann Arbor location as the best.

The founders of Mani wanted to have both a family-style Italian restaurant and high-style dining, and they hit the mark. "I hope we are re-energizing the Italian-American cuisine. It's something I grew up with," said chef Brendan McCall. "We want this to be approachable, like an Italian American diner restaurant.....this should be a family restaurant. That's the end goal." The staff was extremely knowledgeable and provided great service, answering questions on pizzas and the ingredients. A lot has been written about their wood-fire stoves, but the star of the menu is Executive Chef McCall, who pushes the boundaries of typical flavors. Take the  Cippolini pizza -- our choice for Michigan's Best Pizza 2013 -- with mozzarella, roasted arugula, bacon and balsamic, for example, as well as the savory Sausage & Peppers with smoked scamorza, pepperonata and chile pesto. After a few bites, we wanted to keep eating more. The sauce also shines, and features San Marzano tomatoes that are strained and blended with spices to give it a rich and zesty bite. The cheeses are rich and buttery and the ingredients are locally sourced. Their most popular pizza is the Margherita, which has fior di latte, san marzano tomatoes and basil.

Pizza Pizza Bowl Fires Back!

Pizza Pizza Bowl Fires Back!

Submitted by TrppWlbrnID on May 21st, 2013 at 3:17 PM

it sounds like the Little Caesar's / Illich family will not cede their college football bowl turf to the Fords so easily, announcing that they will explore a college bowl game at Comerica Park.

i can't imagine that the B1G would put another team in Detroit for the bowl season, but this would give all of us  up-north man-ball damn-the-weather tough-talkers a chance to go to a game outdoors in Detroit in January or December. the way the college football bowl schedule works with games starting around the 20th of december and some played up until the 10th of january, the games could be far enough apart to not overly fatigue metro Detroit football fans. and surely the Lions will be dead in the water by then.

Surprised to read that there were over 60,000 on hand for Purdue vs Central in 2007, but that last year with a blizzard on the way, there were only 23k for CMU-WKy.


can't we all just get along? or at least alternate years?

Audio: Inside Michigan Football Radio Show - BOOM Don Criqui'd

Audio: Inside Michigan Football Radio Show - BOOM Don Criqui'd

Submitted by Thorin on September 20th, 2012 at 11:01 AM

This week there's almost 40 minutes of Hoke talking and an interview with the voice of ND football Don Criqui of BOOM Denard'd mgofame.


MP3: http://mgovideo.com:8080/Inside-Michigan-Football-Radio-Show-Notre-Dame…

Rodriguez, Brandon may not see eye to eye Pizza wise /s

Rodriguez, Brandon may not see eye to eye Pizza wise /s

Submitted by mbrummer on August 27th, 2010 at 8:40 PM

Was waiting for my pizza at the Local Papa John's, looking at the service, corporate, we care about our customers, plaques and goals.

Under the Papa John's core Values the first reads such:


Focus:  Keeping the MAIN THING, THE MAIN THING. 

I thought it was funny humorous that Rodriguez takes the values of Papa John's over Domino's.  Brandon can not be too happy about this.  Maybe this why Rodriguez has to use that old computer of Brandon with the Domino's auto complete in his chats.

Just thought I'd shre with the other 50,000 people who may find this funny, although probably only 10 others will.

Kinda OT; Enough of the Pizza bashing

Kinda OT; Enough of the Pizza bashing

Submitted by dex on June 9th, 2009 at 3:07 PM

I'm sick and tired of all the pizza bashing around these parts. No food offers you more bang for your buck, period. Book it. End of story. Pizza, in all of its forms, whether it be original, New York, frozen, Chicago, Detroit, CPK, or some other concoction never fails to be delicious and nutritious.

So yeah, maybe you shouldn't eat a whole large pizza every night. I do it six nights a week and I'm pushing 400 pounds - is that because of the pizza or because I like to drink maple syrup for breakfast? It doesn't matter. Don't blame pizza for my glandular problems. Or Alex Mitchell and his gut. The pizza is not to blame here.

That's all.