Stop the protests

Submitted by cadillacjack333 on October 7th, 2014 at 2:24 PM

Down vote me however you want.  I am angry.  You are angry.  Nothing we can do today that has not been done or said.  Support the players because they need it.  When you see them on campus tell them it is going to get better.  They need to know that good or bad they are us and we are all one Michigan.  They have the talent to be great.  They just need the right people in place to bring it out.

If two days after OSU they have not fired the clown show then stop buying tickets. Vote for new regents.  March on Schlissel's (sp?) home and demand better coaches and a new AD.

However, just know that Brandon's money grab on football pays for almost the entire athletic budget and any cuts to football tickets and concession prices will come down on (insert marginal athletic program here).

The administration knows.  They are not stupid.  They will deal with it in 6 games.  We have too much invested for them not to deal with it.

Next CC should be Jim Tressel - kidding.




October 7th, 2014 at 2:27 PM ^

You say Brandon's money grab for football pays for almost the entire athletic budget. You are absolutely correct. But people are angry. There are those who will give up their season tickets. There are those who will stop donating because they are sick of the gouging. The football revenue is  too important to ignore the ongoing issues. It may not take a hit tomorrow, but thinking in sustainable revenue is more important than thinking about milking every dime the fan base has today.


October 7th, 2014 at 4:05 PM ^

with the football profiteering. If we did a little less gilding, then Michigan could charge a little less for tickets and PSDs (especially less for student tickets), and quit prohibiting items and then charging for them inside the gate.

AS for the rest of the OP's point: the reason people are proposing protests is, the last one took place before the David Brandon condescending nice guy hearts and minds PR campaign. Lest they think it's all cool now, people want to keep the heat on Brandon's ouster.

Why is it important to keep the heat on Brandon's ouster? Timing: if his departure is delayed until the end of the season, or if Brandon doesn't go, whatever occurs with Hoke will be miss-managed just like "The Process" last time.

My view: I am uneasy, and want the players to succeed and develop, and am also worried how any protest is received by the players. However, if the students pull off the kickoff protest on national TV in a night game - and then come in an cheer like crazy for the team - that is a huge, very public sign that cannot be overlooked by the regents and the president when they meet the following week.

rob f

October 7th, 2014 at 4:36 PM ^

Damn straight.

(I don't think I've ever used that phrase in my life!)

DB's money-grabbing ways are so very short-sighted, it's hard to believe he still has defenders out there that are unwilling to put a stop to it.  Like an untrained child, it's all about instant gratification at the expense of long-term nurturing and long-term goals.  I think that a relatively small drop in revenue (but enough that the Regents and Schlissel take notice) is a small price to pay for the long-term health of both the University and the Athletic Department (as opposed to Athletic Director).


October 7th, 2014 at 2:29 PM ^

How does the kickoff boycott relate to any of the things you mentioned?  You can boycott the kickoff and still be there the rest of the game to support the players.  It will have zero affect on the money generated by ticket sales and concessions.  


October 7th, 2014 at 3:25 PM ^

If people give up now, as all these DB puppets are suggesting, then DB will be able to tell President Schlissel and the regents that people were just emotionally overreacting to the Utah loss. He'll be able to tell them it will all blow over soon. He'll be able to survive.

If you're a DB supporter, just own it. Don't pretend you want him gone while you work to save him. That's some Benedict Arnold shit.


October 7th, 2014 at 4:27 PM ^

you are all overreacting to the generally poor performance of the football team. Odds are that even if he cares about your sentiments, he'll buy that explanation.

I was in a demonstration once in a meeting of the regents and President Fleming. It was staged during the "public comment" portion of the meeting. There were thousands of other students outside. The entire building was surrounded by a mob of students. I was just part of the handful that got inside to present issues to those in the meeting. They heard us out and then Fleming said "You are all only hurting your cause". Then public time was over and we were "escorted" out.

That demonstration and many others like it had exactly NO impact on the decisions made by the regents and president. It is my considered belief that the regents and president have very little concern about your opposition to Brandon. I also believe that they will prove very very resistant to firing him simply because a portion of the student body, or even the entire student body, think he's done a bad job. That decision is one that they reserve to themselves, using their own criteria, and will prove reluctant to give any appearance of caving to the students, or anyone else.

I'm no one's puppet. I simply believe that your protest will be completely ineffective in influencing them in removing Brandon and will harm the program and team both short and long term. 



October 7th, 2014 at 7:18 PM ^

There are to many variables. Think about next year's home game schedule. Think about the highly bitched about current home game schedule. Why would they not believe that the vastly more compelling 2015 home game schedule won't drive ticket sales, when everyone has been bitching about how poor this seasons home game schedule is? 

The connection is to weak. I understand what you are saying and if by acting in this way you sent a clear message you might make headway. The problem is that the recipients or observers of your behavior will assign their own meaning. You will send them a message, the problem is that you have NO idea what message will be sent, and it does not matter what context you attempt to put around it. 

The regents and the president will look at this through their own lens. To change that focus, they would have to believe your nuance. If the team were undefeated with a shot at both the conference championship and the national championship and your message was this is not about winning or losing, you'd have some chance of them believeing it. The problem is, and if you are honest you'll acknowledge, that the vast majority of those who are willing to partcipate are only willing to participate because the team is 2-4. Do you really think they are not going to put that filter on whatever you try to say?

I am NOT defending your and others legitimate critisms of Brandon. I've made some of them myself. If I thought that the protest approach had a snowball's chance in hell of making a difference, I'd wince at the impact on the program and shut up. 

I've dealt with people like those on the regents, both in the public and private sector, for a bit more than three decades. I've organized campaigns to unseat some of those with whom I've dealt. In my considered opinion, the protest you contemplate for Saturday is NOT going to have the result for which you hope. Further, it has an excellent chance of strengthening Brandon's position with the very people who will make the firing decision. I say to all of you again, while this protest might make you all feel better, it will not have the effect you hope for and carries a very high cost to the program. 

Some of you feel that burning down the program is the only way to "save" it. Do any of you really think folks like the regents would even consider that view? 

There are other channels to pursue none of which endanger the long term health of the program. 


October 7th, 2014 at 8:51 PM ^

These boys are great athletes giving everything they have on a football saturday expecting to win, hoping to develop to the league. The current athletics and football leadership has done significant damage to this football program, and it will not simply remedy itself. It's time for a stand, to shake the tree, to rally against the onslaught of shit handed down by Brandon and his Dominomics...if you can't see the value in the protest, show up on time, buy your five dollar soda, four dollar hot dog, $100 MAC football ticket and don't you DARE bitch when recruits decommit and the stadium starts to resemble pre-Bo attendance form when even boyscout handouts can't fill the house Yost built.
Do something, do nothing, change will happen...


October 7th, 2014 at 9:54 PM ^ you recommend we plebes take? Many of us will never be in the same room as the Emperor or even the Senate...Also, while this doesn't mean you are incorrect, this disdain you describe for popular opinion makes me want to stop following the team altogether...A final thought: why can't the protests be in part about the team's record? Brandon failed to make a serious run at Harbaugh and hired Hoke. Is that not evidence of him being bad at his job?


October 7th, 2014 at 11:28 PM ^

Hell, I am no different than any of you, nor would I ever grant myself some privilege. I don't walk among them, but I have had the opportunity to work for them and be around them when they are not on guard.

Their disdain has NOTHING to do with the football program or any sports program or any student function at the university. So please do not let it affect your passion for the university or any of its facets. My point is that for the most part they are simply focused on very different things than us. Truly in my experience it is as if most of them just landed from a distant planet, while there are exceptions, those are frew and far between.

Presented with a goal, I have learned to set emotion aside and, to my best abilities, determine how to move toward that goal. Sometimes that means moving people, sometimes that means betting on a technology.

Many of you have the goal of removing Brandon from office. I can see both pluses and minuses in that, but let us assume that you've retained me to help you accomplish that goal. I'd be required to tell you that I have a vested interest in the success of the football program and as such my view of your best focus might be colored by that fact.

So here is my view of the problem. You don't and probably can't control how the goal and motivations of the protest will be viewed. The season is far from over. Yes you and others would have preferred Harbaugh to Hoke, but no one knows if that was even possible. Yes the protest can be about the team's record, but that comes across as fans angry about losing. That comes across about being angry about the team. Protests are very much a blunt instrument, not a scalpel. So it's very hard to shape the context.

You want to remove Brandon right? Then you need to build support among those who make that decision. The last thing that you want to do is create a bunker mentality among those who you need to infuence. MGoBlog has a wide audience. I suspect that someone here is on a first name basis with a regent, probably more than one. Find one and convince him or her to take your case to the regents. You need an advocate on the inside. Or at least get him or her to get you some private time to make your case. If you can get an advocate among the regents then you can present the nuances necessary to convince them that this is more than outrage driven by a bad record. 

The worst possible thing that you can do is further hamper the program's progress. Any thing that remotely looks like that guts any credibility you might seek and focuses them on you as a problem. 

Forget this protest. Find an advocate among the regents. Convince that person that your views have merit and you'll be 3/4ths of the way to your goal.

I understand that this is vague, but I have no more inside access than you. Still if you want to succeed, as opposed to simly enjoying venting, then you'll look to influence people not crush them.


kevin holt

October 8th, 2014 at 10:58 AM ^

It's getting national press. The university will look foolish if the students protest en masse and the administration ignores them. They might have different motivations, but you can bet PR is one of them. I sincerely believe that an AD could be decent but still ousted if the students hate him and make enough noise. The U doesn't want to be on ESPN for bad reasons, like a protest or massive drop in student attendance. If students don't go to games, it looks absurd--even if they sold every last seat, the bottom line (not THAT bottom line) is that it's the students' school and they should be at the games. They also turn into alumni, and the older alumni who would buy tickets no matter what will diminish without them, and the administration isn't that shortsighted, I'd hope. I'd really hope.


October 7th, 2014 at 2:33 PM ^

I love it when someone tries to tell everyone here how to feel and what to do.  With the exception of those who threw Devin Gardner under the bus, I haven't seen anyone here who doesn't support the players.

I want to see protests continue until David Brandon is told to go and turn someone else's business into a national joke.


October 7th, 2014 at 3:06 PM ^

support Hoke, so in demanding that Hoke be fired and doing all this "protesting" and "demanding" and yadayada-blahblahblah you are undermining the players and treating them with complete condescension.  It is like you are patting them on the head like "There, there, we know you think you know what you want but you just don't understand, you don't get it.  Just let us fans handle this one."  I could see it if there were hot seat discussions and pockets of fan unrest here but the reaction of a lot of this fanbase has been childish and probably very repugnant to many recruits.

The "we still support the players" thing is complete BS.  These players chose to play for Brady Hoke, they chose to come to school at Michigan and play for these coaches.  And they are not the ones complaining, they are the ones continuing to play and try to get better.  And the fans/students are saying "You suck, but it is not your fault, so we are not mad at you, we just feel bad for you."  What if this is the best they can play right now?  What if this is just how good they are?  Can you imagine the resentment they must have toward the fans/students right now?  To "boycott" the kickoff to games is even worse, because they national story is not going to be "Michigan fans boycott AD," it is going to be "Michigan football is a freakshow and just getting worse by the day."  That is not the direction we want to go with this.

Right now the fans/students are treating the team like they have a collective "disability."  Either cheer for the team to win and accept the losses, as is, or admit you have bailed on the team, as is.


October 7th, 2014 at 3:15 PM ^

The smart players will hate Hoke. They will miss opportunities in life because they will be weak. Denard in Jacksonville could be a stud, but can't hit the next gear, because lesser talented players want it more (I live here and watch him a ton including practices). He is a great guy like Hoke, but wasnt talt to win at all costs within the rules. Players fucking hated Bo (know 2 that played for him and my neighbor was on his o line). He said "we all fucking hated Bo with a passion while on his team, but he is the best thing that ever happened to me." He said Bo was a terror on those that were weak. Do you remember his teams ever quitting on a play? Our team walks at times during plays, and gets clapped at during penalties. These players will grow wise and wish they had a mentor. Kids that come out of school and want an award for showing up to work. Hoke would support that, well it doesn't translate to a lengthy employment. We need to empty that place and hit Brandon in the gut. Watch the team on TV and cheer or yell at the nice guy clapping.