This is the first 5-0 when I've ever felt like "I'm pretty happy hoops/hockey season is starting." Part of that is me being a worry wart about Gardner vs. Road Performances (scroll down). Part of it is the basketball team practice reports are a ticker tape of "youguysyouguysyouguysyouguys!" The last of it is something happened last night that didn't get the proper treatment it deserves. Let me rectify that now.
We Beat Beantown Muppets
And you can't have one without the other...
National title contender Boston College came to Yost last night for the hockey season opener and Michigan beat them 3-1. Washes away last year? Not at all. Changes the likelihood of coming out of a brutal non-conference schedule with enough tournament credentials to make up for a relatively eh Big Ten? Definitely. From people who've gotten to see it I'm hearing Compher is something between a second Copp and a god. Next step is revenge on R.I.T.
HTTVHoops/Hockey contributor MGoBlueline is probably running around in circles after last night. BEFORE last night however they dropped an exhibition 2-1 to Waterloo and that was harrowing.
His response was to experiment with Corsi, a stat named for the guy who came up with it that measures the carry of play by tapping blocked shots and misses as well as shots on goal. It's a think brought up a lot in games Waterloo and every Red Wings loss from 1995-2012, where one team carried the play for two periods and probably earned a draw on the other, but were done in by more than just bad puck. You can make it a % too to come away with an idea of defensive performance:
Theory: fewer pucks end up on goal if the defense is getting in their way.
Weeklies. Best and Worst by bronxblue was effusive in its praise after two weeks and a bye of things to be mad about. At first I didn't get the part about Mitch Leidner being mini-Tebow, but now that I've seen the broadcast oh man: my Sparty brother isn't an RCMB'er but even he was like "wow these announcers just hate your guys." Inside the Box Score by ST3 had about 12 Blues Brothers/Belushi shirts that might have been better than my PSU excuses one. LSAClassOf2000 is just trolling Purdue now. Turnover Analysis says not turning it over=good. Jonvalk went there with the weekly wallpaper, is probably going there for it. Program.
Etc. Bill an I agree: Ohio State and Northwestern only made each other look terrifying.
[Jump: Best of the Board, Zen]
Best of the Board
YOSSARIAN'S TREE IS JEREL WORTHY IN DISGUISE
Glasgow may be tipping his snaps. Fear not: Penn State's coaches are unlikely to read our boards or get past the jump. You are encouraged to do so:
Gardner would then stand there motionless with his hands ready to get the snap. Glasgow would then jerk his head up, give it a half-count, and then snap the ball. Every time, it seemed. It appeared to me like any defensive lineman could figure out how to time that snap very easily and come flying off the ball.
If you're seeing it I believe it. Let's hope nobody else is seeing it until he's had some more practice.
BIG TEN TO PLAY CHAMPIONSHIP GAME AT INDY MOTOR SPEEDWAY
We're going to have to, as Tennessee finally figured out how to beat Michigan's attendance record in the most Southern way ever: having a game at a motor speedway just for this purpose. Zone Left said it best:
Tennessee can't sell out Neyland anymore. How are they selling 150K tickets for a game in the middle of nowhere?
Because ESS EEE SEE! They won't be able to see anything from that distance but nobody really watches SEC football: they just go there to get drunk and pretend they're not just a third world country affixed to an industrial giant (kind of like NASCAR). Dammit, now I can't use the "I'm proud not to have taken unnecessary shots at the south in this post" tag.
NUTTANY LIONS "MICHIGAN IS THE WORST 5-0 TEAM IN THE CONFERENCE"
I was invited to do a podcast with a new PSU blog. I start about here:
Right after the guy I didn't know (Ox) gave the quote above and predicted 31-24. Earlier they said Michigan has no receivers, which was probably misunderstanding: we talked a bunch about how Funchess let Michigan bench some not very good receivers and I may not have emphasized Jackson/Reynolds were actually the 4th receivers.
Whatchya gonna do? They were recommended by Cari Greene, whom I worked with on the PSU version of HTTV, and the one guy I spoke to (Dan Abella) passed my sanity checkers. The defense I offer is he's probably not used to opposing bloggers coming in and being kind of down about their team and gave my 50-50 assessment the standard homer discount.
GunnersApe went around the internet to pull up other opinions from PSU blogs, including BSD. FTR the nearest thing to a Cook of their blogosphere is Mike Pettigano, who started LinebackerU and edited our book and retired from BSD a few years ago because SBNation wasn't going to pay him what a newspaper would. His understudy Jeff Junstrom left last December for the same reasons. A big part of why I want to expand the HTTV books is to make it possible for guys like that to justify blogging as a career. Few fanbases are going to be able to match the volume of traffic an MGoBlog or Eleven Warriors can bring in. SBNation has done a great service to sports media in gathering the best bloggers and putting them on a great platform, but long-term the really good ones need a paycheck that can send their own kids to the college they're writing about.
PARK AT PENN SHHHTTATE!
Two threads for a stadium in the middle of the world's largest parking lot? Is parking in Pennsylvania like giving directions in Michigan: something everybody just likes to talk about so they can show off they know to use "the Lodge" but never "The Reuther" or "The Ford"?
TAKEAWAY: CLAY TRAVIS IS WORSE THAN OHIO STATE FANS
Clay Travis is a dick whose claim to fame is mostly being the biggest SEC troll on the World Wide Web before the SEC was even comparable to the other big conferences. There are entire portions of the 2006 internet lost to people trying to reason with that guy. This year he's been writing the slowest Top 10 list ever of stupid fanbases, which is really just him writing the same article ten times but pretending it's a different school.
Etc. Ferentz is giving up on punt returning; maybe the NCAA ought to just go the NFL route and force teams to put players on the l.o.s. Softball (yes they have a short fall season of exhibitions) is perfect. Coach Brown talked with Alex Malzone, the in-state 2015 quarterback option who may be moving up to THE option with his recent play. MGoBlog vs. Testicular Cancer. LivingInOhio broke down Green's TD.
Your Moment of Zen: