Carr allegedly advised 2008 commit to flip to Iowa

Submitted by Leaders And Best on August 22nd, 2012 at 1:04 PM

Lloyd Carr allegedly advised 2008 Michigan QB commit John Wienke to flip to Iowa during the Rich Rodriguez transition because it would better fit his style of play as a pro-style QB. And it clearly worked out as Wienke is now a punter at Iowa. I wonder if Carr will finally address the story from Three and Out about his willingness to sign off on any transfers.  Doubt it.

Scott Dochterman @ScottDochterman

Former Michigan coach guided QB to Iowa | TheGazette 



August 22nd, 2012 at 3:15 PM ^ do we know he DIDN'T do that? We did have some decommits from that class.  Some were even players more suited for the spread.  Rich just might have done that, if they asked him.  And if so, particularly at this what?  Of course, there is the difference in logic in asking a guy with a storied career who's retiring at a place and a guy who just got fired for advice, so it probably didn't happen.  But if it did...if he said "you're too small to be a MANBALL lineman...go to Oregon" what.


August 22nd, 2012 at 4:40 PM ^

We don't know, but since there is absolutely 0 evidence that RR ever steered a comit to go to another school, nor even an off hand remark by a player or former recruit so I have no reason to think he ever did.  The only related evidence of his actions during the RR-Hoke transition was to urge current players to give the new staff a chance.  I don't care if people dislike RR because of his record, but baseless speculation is just that.

I just thought it was interesting how the two ex coaches are percieved by the fanbase (particularly this blog).  There are a lot of people in this thread claiming that Carr is just being an upstanding guy by advising a top recruit to seek another program during the coaching transition and I don't think for a second that RR would be given the same consideration.

Just theoretical masturbation really.


August 22nd, 2012 at 9:23 PM ^

Whether Carr or Rodriguez encouraged kids to think through their decisions thoroughly, only an unreasonable person would be upset.  Good for Carr if he told Wienke he'd be better off elsewhere.  Good for Rodriguez if he told Kevin Sousa he'd be better off elsewhere, too.

I think Hart is a different story.  Running backs can be successful just about anywhere, whether they're large or small.  If Rodriguez told him to go elsewhere with any certainty, that would be disingenuous.


August 23rd, 2012 at 11:04 AM ^

I just think random speculation is random speculation. But the better question is why you keep coming here. You say you don't like it here. You've been banned at least twice. No one likes you here. (Which is saying a lot). I'm guessing even your family is not that fond of you if you're as negative around them as you are around here. What IS the mentality behind a troll?

snarling wolverine

August 22nd, 2012 at 5:23 PM ^

Hart may not be Hoke's ideal running back, but most everyone here (not just the stupid people) would have put a hit on RR's life if he'd done that.

And you know this how?

It amazes me that there are people out there so eager to defend the internet honor of a fired coach that they're perfectly willing to trash our own fanbase in the process.


August 22nd, 2012 at 11:22 PM ^

I know this because a day doesn't go by here without some idiot with an acount created in the last 12 months spoting off about how RR "ran off" Ryan Mallet. (present company excluded)

and you think I should give obsessed fans who are bloodthirsty about the tiniest scrap of recruiting news the benefit of the doubt regarding RR (hypothetically) encouraging a recruit to go elsewhere?

that's insane.

Do you remember Boren transfering?
A virtual prayer vigil discussing whether Denard would stay?
EVERY recruiting saga where our heartstings are toyed with by 17yr old recruits? (even 3*s)

Thats not "trashing a fanbase"  it's observing human nature.  (and for the record, the "stupid people" was related to Magnus' "smart people" quote.)

The fanbase had turned on RR (for mostly good reason), after the Gator Bowl fiasco virtually evryone was calling for him to be fired.   . and you think the fans wouldn't mind him steering a recruit to someone else?  I'm sorry about my earlier comparison to West Virginia . . . it would have been worse.

You seem to think I'm a pro RR defender?  I'm not, I was damn glad he was fired; but this has nothing to do with defending him, just noting how fickle (and apparently polarizing) Michigan fanhood is.

This shouldn't be that surprising or insulting.


August 22nd, 2012 at 2:06 PM ^

The obvious difference is that RR is a system guy who forced his offense on incompatible players, whereas Hoke/Borges/Mattison have shown an eagnerness to design his playbook based on the talent.  Denard had a 1000x better chance of success here because of the open mindedness of the coaching staff with than Weinke would have had with RR and his closemindedness. 


August 22nd, 2012 at 2:10 PM ^

Who did RR force his offense on? You make it sound like he inherited a boat load of talent and ruined it all. The cupboard was as bare as could be when he got here. I don't have the stats but I would venture over 90% of the offensive production graduated, went pro early, or transferred.


August 22nd, 2012 at 2:13 PM ^

He forced his offense on a team that didn't have a single player recruited to run spread option.  I don't care if the players you had heard of from 2005-07 had graduated, all of the kids stepping in (Threet, Sheridan, Minor, the entire offensive line, etc.) never had a fucking chance because of the inability of RR to lower his ego and plan a transition to his ideal system. 


August 22nd, 2012 at 2:24 PM ^

The problem is that you never had the chance to find out how good some of those players were, because they were totally misutilized.  I feel bad for all of those players because I know with a supportive coaching staff they would have had entirely different Michigan legacies.  It's sad that they were not even remotely put in position to succeed. 

Case in point, they could have ran nothing but  I form off tackles against Toledo and won by 3 touchdowns.  Sad that guys like you think the players were all awful when the truth was they were being put in position to fail. 


August 22nd, 2012 at 2:34 PM ^

Michigan switched to a zone blocking scheme in 2006 to take advantage of Hart's ability to read holes. While zone blocking obviously has many variants and different techniques, can be taught very differently, the entire offensive line had been instructed in the ideas used in Rodriguez's offense for two years when he took over.


August 22nd, 2012 at 2:51 PM ^

Zone blocking, yes, but you can't tell me it isn't a drastic change for an offensive lineman to go from blocking for what was essentially a pro-style, we know what we're doing when we break the huddle offense to a less organized, not sure if our QB (who's slow) is going to take the run option if it's there or rely on his more established passing skills. 


August 22nd, 2012 at 4:55 PM ^

Threet, bless his soul for trying as hard as he did, could not hit an open receiver to save his life! He still had trouble getting consistent playing time at ASU and was eventually benched before he quit football because of concussion problems. Yeah, we definitely would have beat Toledo by running I form off tackles but at what cost - another season of implementing his offense is lost?



August 22nd, 2012 at 5:08 PM ^

He played in all but one game in his only season at ASU before concussions ended his career.  His stat line that year:

Games: 11 

Rating: 133.41

Comp-Att-INTs  208-336-16  

Percentage  61.9

Total Passing Yards 2534 

TDs 18 

Threet's 61.9 completion percentage was higher than the single season bests of either Chad Henne or John Navarre.  Guys that are viewed as good if not great Michigan quarterbacks.  But lets have him run read option.  Yeah, that's the ticket. 

And - to the point about delaying's called a transition.  Hoke did it very well and won 11 games.  RR did not and won 17.  In three years. 

coastal blue

August 22nd, 2012 at 5:16 PM ^

Just to clarify:

We never found out how good Minor could be because of injury.

I'm pretty sure Nick Sheridan was maxed out, but there's really no way to know. 

Steven Threet, as has been noted, had a wildly mediocre season at Arizona State (17 TDs, 16 INTS) two years ago as a a spread passing offense. 

I'm fairly certain that Rodriguez figured that he would have 4-5 years at Michigan at the very least and wanted to implement his system immediately on offense so that said players could be peaking by 2011-2012. If this was the case, he was pretty much correct, as the things that seemed to hinder the offense most were youth at QB and a woefully inept defense. 

I think its a fair assumption to make that the offensive output we saw against Nebraska and Ohio State would have been the norm throughout the season had Rodriguez had a second year Denard and a healthy Fitz. But who knows. 


August 22nd, 2012 at 5:21 PM ^

There's no reason that it had to get so bad before it got good - that was RRs fatal flaw.  There is no evidence that slowly transitioning to a different style delays the productiveness of an offense when it is fully implemented.  The "build up" you mention before "peaking" is just not neccessary with a good coach, you can max what you get out of your talent every year, changing as neccessary. 

coastal blue

August 22nd, 2012 at 6:03 PM ^

Okay, but once again:

Minor was hurt for much of 2008 and 2009.

Sheridan was not very good (not his fault, he was never supposed to play major minutes)

Threet proved later that he was around average.

Our top receiver going into that year was Mathews. He was hurt. 

You want there to be some level of talent or experience in 2008 and 2009 that doesn't exist that would have allowed you to make sense. 

Now if Mallett, Arrington and Manningham stayed, Minor and Mathews were healthy all season and we went 3-9 because Rodriguez was running Mallett 10-15 times a game, I would be with you on Rodriguez being an inflexible one trick pony on offense. But that's not how it happened. We had a really bad offense - not so much due to talent but inexperience -  that only got worse with injury. You can say what you want about the defense, but blaming on Rodriguez for wanting to implement his biggest key to success on day one to prepare for the future is not being a "bad coach" in this situation, its being realistic. 


August 22nd, 2012 at 6:21 PM ^

Mallet, Arrington and Manningham were gone and Minor was injured a significant portion of the year.  Okay.  But just because the guys that were coming in were inexperienced doesn't mean we should throw them into a system that they didn't fit and that, ultimately, lessened their chance at success. 

I look at it this way: The 2011 defensive cupboard was, before last season, seen as just as bare as the 2008 offensive cupboard.   Nobody viewed Will Heininger as very talented.  Ryan Van Bergen was seen as average at best.  Jake Ryan was young and not highly regarded.    Will Campbell was a bust.  On ST, Brendon Gibbons was universally slammed.  Had all of those players failed last season, Hoke and company would have had the same built in excuse that are commonly used to justify 2008.  But a funny thing happened in 2011 that didn't happen in 2008, all of those guys succeeded beyond expectations.  And they suceeded because the coaching staff put them in the best possible position to win football games.  That there is coaching.  2008 was demolition. 

coastal blue

August 22nd, 2012 at 6:44 PM ^

Let's make this a valid, fair comparison to 2008's offense.

If this were the case, the three best experienced players on paper for the defense would have never shown up. 

So Martin goes pro, RVB enters the draft and hopes to get picked up and Demens transfers to Pitt. 

Then, during the season, JT Floyd is hurt for most of it, as well as Craig Roh. 

Does the 2011 defense perform at the same level that it did this year? Because that would be a real comparison. 

Also, the 2011 defense was not a bare cupboard. This is the fundmental mistake of the RR-bashers: They don't understand the difference that a year or two makes in college sports. 

Its much easier to implement, say freshman Blake Countess into the secondary when you have guys who have loads of experience such as Kovacs, Woolfolk, Floyd and Avery. In comparison, this would have been like Threet having a solid, not spectactular line of Juniors blocking for him. Its much easier to fit in a few freshmen in your front seven when you have  Seniors Martin and Van Bergen and Juniors Demens and Roh. It would have been like having two freshmen wideouts with a veteran quarterback and a veteran running back who were not hurt. 

Once again, your comparison is not valid. There was not the necessary talent or experience in 2008's offense. The 2011 defense had plenty of both (and yes, a great defensive coaching staff). 


August 22nd, 2012 at 6:58 PM ^

Your opinions are portrayed like facts, so it's no use debating with you.  You win.  RR did things perfectly and the 4-8, 5-7, and 7-6 seasons were inevitable.  He had nothing to do with the unprecedented losing and nothing he could have done early in his tenure could have eased the transition.  Hoke was the luckiest man on earth to inherit a team chock full of 5 star players that RR recruited.  It was inevitable that the world's best freshman class would make an impact on the field because of the incredible leadership RR fostered in Troy Woolfolk.  Maybe we will get lucky and fire Hoke and rehire RR and, while it will probably take the top 10 recruiting classes of the last two years 4 years to develop, that senior season will be spectacular. 


coastal blue

August 22nd, 2012 at 7:08 PM ^

Right, so now because you're wrong you're going to play it like I somehow made a bunch of outrageous claims and then pick and choose anecdotes that you think fit your narrative. 

Read back: All I'm claiming is that there wasn't much to be done with the 2008 offense at that with the injuries, things went from bad to worse. If you want to blame Rodriguez for the defenses and the losses because of that defense, then sure, I'm on board. But acting like there was some road to success with what happened in 2008 is ridiculous. I don't think you can judge him as a "bad coach" as you're doing based on his decision to implement his offense from day one. 

Also, didn't I post that that we had a great defensive coaching staff in 2011? I'm just saying that if the 2011 defense had had similar losses in personnel that the 2008 offense did before and during the season, things would not have been the same. No coaching staff could have taken a 2011 Michigan defense without Martin, Roh, RVB, Demens and Floyd and made it a winner. Simple as that. 

No need to get so upset because you're not making valid comparisons. 


August 22nd, 2012 at 7:20 PM ^

Michigan's 3rd string offensive talent should have been able to beat Toledo in 2008.  I'm not claiming that the team was National Championship material, but to suggest as you are that nobody could have done better than 4-8 with that team is just your opinion, and one that I wholeheartedly disagree with.  And the fact is, you are the one making invalid comparisons - the 2011 defense lost Mouton and Ezeh from the previous year so let's just take Demens and Roh off your list.  Would they have been as good without Martin, RVB, and Floyd - probably not - but would they have still been a strong unit because the staff would have put them in the right position to succeed, yes (in my opinion). 

2008 sucked to the worst extent possible. It could not have sucked worse. 2009 sucked.  2010 even sucked.   Would a different coach other than RR made it better?  Surely another coach couldn't have made it worse. 

coastal blue

August 23rd, 2012 at 11:55 AM ^

How do you prove this?

And how do you prove that Michigan's talent in 2007 wasn't greater in degree over Appy State than Michigan's talent in 2008 over Toledo? 

Michigan in 2007 was beaten by the same things it always got beat by: A dangerous who didn't have lead injections in his feet. 

coastal blue

August 23rd, 2012 at 12:09 PM ^

Now you're just going from crazy to insane.

Mouton, a senior, went pro and Ezeh, a senior, tried to go pro. So no I am not making invalid comparisons. But let's use your reasoning in this case! So by your logic I guess we should have had Chad Henne in 2008? Hell, why didn't Henne, Hart and Long come back! No wonder Rodriguez got fired! He couldn't keep that kind of talent around!

I'm comparing Roh and Floyd to losing Mathews and Minor for extended time on an already weak unit. You're granting extra years to seniors who were graduating.

And for the record, I never said another coach couldn't have done better than 3-9 with that team. Had Hoke come in in 2008 and encountered the same talent that started day one against Utah, encountered the same injuries, but uses his more pro-style offense, does Michigan go 5-7? 6-6? 7-5? I mean really, what games are we making cases for winning? Utah possibly, but Utah was a much better team than us. Toledo sure. Northwestern? Purdue? But do we beat Wisconsin with Hoke? It was never going to be a good year. Rodriguez was setting things up for the future and cutting his losses in what was going to be a disappointing year. Hoke or another coach might have gotten a couple more wins, but we weren't going for a couple more wins, we were going for an overhaul of the system, namely the offense. It didn't work the way it was supposed to, but in its own way, by year 4 it did work. 

People just got upset it didn't go as smoothly as they wanted it to (You know, how life tends to work?).

snarling wolverine

August 22nd, 2012 at 1:41 PM ^


I realize we are talking about starters vs. a backup but the logic still holds - you could make a strong case that these players' talents would be put to better use at another school.


A strong case?  Denard, Molk and Gallon did fine last year, and I don't think Smith would have beaten out Toussaint in any system, spread or otherwise.  Maybe you could make a case for Dileo, but there we're talking about a guy who was totally under the radar and who hardly played when Rodriguez was here.


August 22nd, 2012 at 1:54 PM ^

Great analogy for anyone that had any comprehension level above 3rd grade. I remember Carr would meet with a handicap kid at the donut shop in Dexter just to be nice. I was not a big Carr fan because the games were boring, but we won. He was a great coach and is a great person.

coastal blue

August 22nd, 2012 at 5:28 PM ^

I think he harmed the football program - including the kids he recruited - by not speaking out against the Free Press and by not giving some sort of statement about coaching transitions to the media after the first Rodriguez season. 

I think that everything you need to know about Coach Carr - that he is a somewhat bitter old man about how he was treated by fans and the media during his time at Michigan - is summed up by his statements prior to the season about last year's team. He stated he thought they were too small to compete for the Big Ten title. For a man who doesn't say much and pretty much clamped up during 2008-10, this pretty much summed it up for me about what he thought about Rodriguez, the spread and the players brought in after he left: Not real Michigan football players. Of course, he was proven wrong by this past year's team equalling his second best record ever at 11-2 (and of course beating Ohio, which he found to be near impossible during the second half of his career), but there he was, grinning at the Sugar Bowl coin flip. Since he didn't seem to care when the Detroit media was tearing away at the team and everyone was screaming that they were the worst team(s) ever (I'm sure that got tiring to the players, so it would have been nice if a respected member of the Michigan family stepped in and at least defended them) I would have preferred him watching from home. 

I think the biggest problem with Carr is some people hold him to a standard very few coaches reach when he wasn't quite there. There wasn't anything that stood out about him. He didn't have Bo's personality, Woody's fire, an iconic look like Bear Bryant and he didn't have the winning percentage to triumph over his lack of uniqueness to make him a legend. He was just a solid coach who inherited a talented team that won the 1997 national championship and then just past that seemed to underachieve with the best talent in the Big Ten year after year afterwards. 

He's not a bad person, and he's done many wonderful things, but in regards to the football program, he's not Saint Carr, as some of our posters would have you believe. But that's just my opinion.