Dear Diary for a Better Diag

Submitted by Seth on February 20th, 2015 at 1:01 PM


Tremendous Lloyd quote!

That's a young-looking Lloyd Carr from the 1990 recruiting pamphlet that Bauglieve found on Ebay. In case the photos come down from there eventually I put them on the MGoServer for posterity (click for each):

coachesall americans
bowl gamesthe campuss and c

The comments have mined all sorts of nuggets from these. Count my vote with those who want to see Harbaugh bring back one-handed, shirtless pushups on the Diag. The football fans would feel more connected to the players, and I'm sure the student body would appreciate the peck show way more than the usual entertainment in that space.

Team 138 offers its sarcastic gratitude. Originally posted in the forums, I moved Qmatic's walk through the wasted redshirts on Michigan's roster to the diaries because this is something we're going to be referencing all too often for the next few years. Morris is on there although he had to play once Bellomy tore his ACL because Gardner's ribs were becoming…you know what, let's not get into what Hoke did with Gardner.

I can show you how Hoke's redshirting practices compared to his predecessors because it's tracked on my spreadsheet:


Circumstances played a role in this certainly, but by Hoke's third year the rate of redshirting should have shown a climb into the 70s that a healthy program has. I'll probably address this in a Jimmystats sometime this offseason.

How to Man Your Baughlls

Just a glance at his formations screams old-school, smash-mouth, 3-yards-and-a-cloud-of-dust SPARTAAAA:
Thing is, these offenses are notorious for being predictable in an era of S&C parity.  So why does it work?

Tell us, dragonchild.

Deep head trauma is bad. Chronic traumatic encephalopathy is a horrible, progressive, degenerative disease of the brain long known to the sports world as "punch drunk." The provable link between it and repetitive brain trauma (specifically deep trauma, i.e. not all concussions) is meaningful to football especially because there is a clear moral dilemma in rooting for people to do a thing that can do that to them.

Neurologists released a study awhile ago that linked the age of first exposure to football and cognitive impairment. As happens with released studies, a few people who read the peer reviewed journals pour over it, and media folk read the title, decided if it fit their favorite narrative, and either canonized it or ripped it.

TSS wrote a diary this week to walk you through the study and what it actually says, which is that the progression of CTE is suggestively linear from the point you started playing football.

Diary etc. Canadian's weekly college hockey update. Introducing grad transfer Wayne Lyons.

Best of the Board


Over the last couple of weeks it came out that the extremity of the student body's distribution of doucheiness is trying to Create the Future™ of Michigan-themed game day music. What I mean by that:


My best friend was not being hyperbolic about his freshman roommate.

Wolverine Devotee decided to use this as a reminder that we have traditional songs beyond The Victors. Hot Time might have been relegated to history, but we still sing Varsity during the pre-game, and Let's Go Blue!, and the cowbell cheer, as well as several covers the band has adopted (Blues Brothers, Temptation, Hawaiian War Chant), and the alma mater. If, like me, you've been singing "Denard Robinson, Robinson oh Robinson" to Varsity since Brian suggested it, maybe it's time we all learn the lyrics. They are (music):

Men of Michigan onto victory, Ev'ry man in ev'ry play.
Michigan expects her Varsity to win today!
Rah! Rah! Rah-rah-rah! Win for Michigan!

Varsity, Down the field.
Never yield, Raise high our shield.
March on to victory for Michigan,
(And the Maize and Blue)
Oh Varsity, We're for you,
Here for you to cheer for you.
We have no fear for you. Oh Varsity! (repeat)

At the risk of moving myself incrementally rightward in the douchechart, I posit that Michigan's second fight song is a better composition than 90% of fight songs.


Michigan House '75 has a brother in law who played from '69 to '73 with, among other legends, 1972 captain and right guard Tom Coyle, who passed away in 2012. This was how Coyle was recruited to Michigan:

He and Tommy had just gotten back from a job and were covered in paint. This and twelve other kids running around when Bo and Malony arrive. Old Man Coyle proceeds to pass beers around to everyone including Tommy. Bo is shocked, turns to Mrs. Coyle and says, "Excuse me Mrs. Coyle," and then turns to Tommy - "If you drink that beer, I'm going to kick your ass!"

Bo was no teetotaler, but he did refuse to do Michigan Replay if Budweiser was sponsoring it. So guess what happens then, or read on.

Your Moment of Zen:

via Dr. Sap

"I think we'll always run the option because what it can do to defenses." –Jim Harbaugh



February 20th, 2015 at 1:48 PM ^

Push-ups on the diag would be great. But my favorite diag entertainment has always been Paul Kyprie (aka Zeemo), the juggler who taught me how to juggle when I was a teen. I want to see the players doing one handed push-ups and catching juggling clubs that Paul wings at 'em with the other hand. Wait correction, swords that Paul wings at them. Or chainsaws. That would be a show!


February 20th, 2015 at 4:54 PM ^

Fighting companion song

Look, I'm not interested in aligning myself with a group of people determined to create a new fight song. However, if I was so inclined, wouldn't the best approach involve singing this 'new companion fight song' at games? If it's a good song, people will sing it! Before you know it, it will have become a fight song. You don't have to go out and tell people you want to do it, just do it. I'm just sayin'.


February 20th, 2015 at 6:57 PM ^

. . . from when I was in the MMB:

Varsity, varsity
Varsity, oh varsity
Var-sity varsity oh var-si-ty (varsity var-si-ty)
Varsity, varsity
Varsity, oh varsity
Var-sity varsity oh var-si-ty!


February 20th, 2015 at 8:02 PM ^

Red shirts overblown?

UM has signed 82 guys in the last four year compared to OSU's 99 (those scholarship sanctions had real bite, by the way). How does redshirting more guys help?

Seems like additional lottery tickets would be more valuable than fifth years for marginal contributors.


February 21st, 2015 at 9:03 AM ^

I would love to find a way to integrate Hawaiian War Chant into the actual game. You know, that other song you can't have if you have the first one?

Also... "The Yellow and Blue", The Alma Mater. We have to be one of the few football schools where most people don't know any of our alma mater except for maybe "Hail!" Would love to hear it played right at the end of games after a few rounds of The Victors.

Sent from MGoBlog HD for iPhone & iPad


February 21st, 2015 at 10:23 AM ^

that there were seemingly so many season ending injuries/ACL tears necessitating playing players that normally would have been redshirted on the Hoke team's?  Conditioning issues, lack of training on protecting oneself during contact, disorganized-poor team dynamics, bad luck, all the above??   

Der Alte

February 21st, 2015 at 11:50 AM ^

Seth said:

"At the risk of moving myself incrementally rightward in the douchechart, I posit that Michigan's second fight song is a better composition than 90% of fight songs."

I couldn't agree more. I have heard the tune and sung the words to "Varsity" for more years than most of you here have been on the planet and I've never tired of it. It's about as good a "second banana" to "The Victors" as anyone could conjure up. And now, thanks to you, Seth, I even know the words to the intro: "Men of Michigan on to victory . . ." Thanks again, Seth, and. Go Blue!


Sextus Empiricus

February 21st, 2015 at 1:36 PM ^

The moral implication is one with which truly I grapple.  It's a sociological confustifying vortex of issues.  During the holidays I got into this with Wolverine1987 in a gladiatorial vein. Sal Quattro was highly skeptical both there and in the post leading up to this diary - taking my light hearted tone for subjectivism.  But it was a post at the end of that thread where an analogy was made to a raisin that made me go "guh".  That is what got me to write the diary.  

I wrote Bob Stern when I posted the piece to get his feedback.  He shares the moral concerns.  He has been outspoken against the NFL player settlement.  The chaotic nature of the break of this story is fascinating and the portrayal and role of science disturbing.

All that said my personal interest is large in the AFE debate.  There are far more football vets like myself who have never played a down of college ball for whom the story has meaning...not to mention the kids.


February 22nd, 2015 at 9:12 AM ^

Thank you for the great video of young JH and Bo! Wow, I had forgotten a little just how great Bo was as a coach. And, you can see the great future coach thought process in Jim Harbaugh's remarks.

Great video clip!


February 22nd, 2015 at 10:56 AM ^

about offensive styling under Bo and what Harbaugh now likes to run, because he was a product of the system he ran at Michigan. Curiously, Bo was never a stylist on offense. Whatever style was current, worked well and he found could be adapted through the basic fundamentals of coaching interior line play and led to best and most consistent execution, is the style he wanted his guys to play.

So, when you watch Harbaugh run Michigan's offense, watch in particular how he sets up to throw even in limited frames. His footwork and squaring of the shoulders and follow-through are fundamentally sound, and exactly the way he teaches that mechanic to his quarterbacks and in clinics today. Compare that set up to Denard's and Gardner's in film footage. That obviously comes from being raised by a coach. But fundamentals make you a more sound and effective quarterback over time.

The point of this is, that when you watch these vintage highlights of Harbaugh under center, rolling out, running the option, throwing to tall, rangy tight ends at Michigan, running when needed to get a first down or make a play on the run, you are looking at what Michigan will run under Harbaugh and the offensive style it will adopt. Of course, it won't be completely similar.

You adapt your team to your player strengths and ability to perform, just as Bo talked about in that snippet of an interview with Brandy. But that was some real classic stuff with great nuggets of insight.

For example, there is a shot of the Michigan playbook, Harbaugh is glancing over in an outfit sans khakis but typical for athletes of the day, outside the student union. I don't think I've ever seen a close up look of the playbook.

Bo once went to a coaching convention on the wishbone and some other option stuff that was popular at the time. He considered whether to adopt it exclusively at Michigan but then decided it didn't function with the fundamentals and athletes he was recruiting, so he bagged the idea. He was in favor of whatever kind of offense and formations worked to give his team the best chance to win. So, he favored running over passing. But Michigan gradually passed more than it ever had before by the time Harbaugh was the quarterback and then it evolved again over time, as the game keeps evolving.

Harbaugh learned from a legend that you keep what works and evolve as necessary. That's how it will be under our new coach.


February 23rd, 2015 at 5:09 AM ^

 Start working   at home with Google! It's by-far the best job I've had. Last Wednesday I  got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this - 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work  through this link, go to tech tab for work detail.