Left: Jim and Sam, who is smiling, because when is he not? Right: Little Demo, who is giving the look big demo used to give little defensive linemen
Last February I went to that Harbaugh & Harbaugh thing that inducted the brothers into the Pioneer HS Hall of Fame. As part of the charity auction they had each brother sign a Pioneer helmet. First they auctioned John’s helmet, but Jim Harbaugh outbid everyone. Jim sat down with his new John Harbaugh helmet, and signed the other side.
Then they auctioned the one Jim signed. A lot of people bid, including my friend Matt Demorest, but now it’s a competition: John outbid them all, signed his far more expensive helmet, and sat it back down in front of Sam Webb, instructing the auctioneer that he was donating it back to the cause.
So here’s the auctioneer, who can’t figure out what just happened even though the audience had tracked it well enough. On the other end of the table there’s Jim glaring like this is going to end in a wrestling match. In between them are Sam and Ira smiling like their teeth can keep them from bursting out laughing.
Jim leaps up and jams his helmet into the auctioneer’s hands: “I’m donating this back too.” The auctioneer’s like okay…throws out a number near what John Harbaugh just paid, and for a moment it’s silent before Demorest stands up with a massive finger in the air. His kid pumps his fist and goes “YES!” Sam loses it.
So if you’re wondering where your money goes when you buy or refinance with Matt, yeah, he just blows it all on hats. Fortunately it doesn’t cost you much since Homesure Lending is a small shop without the usual overhead, and you’ll make that back in a few months of your less expensive mortgage. Good deal.
ON OTHER MEMORABILIA:
User Jay Z bought a copy of this print, and was trying to figure out game; the readers figured out it’s 1989 Maryland. In the process it inspired two more threads: mine on your favorite memorabilia, and Wolverine Historian’s list of things the stadium used to have in 1989 that it doesn’t have now.
- Backflips off the front row
- Flinging toilet paper
- Drinking beer in the stands
- Packed student section
Go in there’s gifs and discussion.
On the bits of memorabilia, M Fanfare put you all to shame:
And finally, probably the most unusual piece of UM memorabilia I own, given to me by one of my groomsmen when I got married. It's from a book written by a UM geology professor right after World War I about why, in his opinion, the war broke out. But what makes it unique is who owned this particular copy. The author inscribed it to him.
"To Fielding H. Yost, With the best regards of Wm H. Hobbs, Ann Arbor, Oct 3, 1922."
To those of you who bought bits of the old turf, that was all the doing of Bob Lipson, the guy who created and produced Michigan Replay.
[After the JUMP: I woke up at 5:30 this morning with a burning desire to write something on Tunsil, in case you want to hear me make the same case Brian already made today.]
I CHOSE THE WRONG WEEK TO GIVE UP POPCORN: Hey look, something actually interesting happened at the NFL Draft (click to biggen):
To recap, Ole Miss signed Tunsil, Nkemidiche, and Treadwell in 2013 under obvious circumstances. Nothing about Ole Miss—not delightful Oxford Mississippi, the program’s trajectory, or hiring that dickhead high school coach from The Blind Side—could explain how they signed two of the top three national prospects plus the country’s most coveted receiver. An unhinged family member ratted out Tunsil as a sophomore and cost him a few games. Other than that, the best public evidence was Treadwell’s infamous wad of cash.*
Until last night, when someone hacked Tunsil’s phone and published the incriminating screenshots on Instagram. The grams followed a video of Tunsil doing a gas mask bong hit (apparently from two years ago) with a “Rebel Pride” (not) confederate flag on the wall.
If you’re shocked, you’re probably equally aghast that college kids experiment with marijuana consumption contraptions. And if you think this kind of thing will stop by sending federal troops into Ole Miss…ahem…you think drugs would go away if only the government would get serious.
Make no mistake: we love that this left tackle’s phone got hacked for this purpose because we know that Ole Miss is shady and want to see them go down. I get giddy just thinking about Freeze and his bosses doing the sad Bluth walk. It is exactly the kind of image we need to feel like having rules is working. It ought to be a sober reminder that they’re not, and never ever will.
I don’t care if Tunsil’s mom needed to keep the utilities on, or if Tunsil was using the pretense to extort $300 from a company that makes millions of dollars from an ESPN contract. Because that contract’s value is based on the premise of SEC football’s ability to showcase Tunsil-level talent. Freeze’s plea of innocence when he signed the 2013 class was as laughable as a valuation of Tunsil’s football services at a Mississippi degree, room and board in Oxford, and the professional tutelage of Hugh Fucking Freeze.
As Michigan fans we would love it if the players really only got so much. Our tickets would be $10/game, our cable bills would be $20/month, and our football would be sweet because U of M degree + Ann Arbor + Wolverine fandom + coached by Harbaugh et al. would be the Google offer of the business.
The demand for football skill is much greater than the value of America’s scholarship supply, as evidenced by the gigantic black market for it. Standing in the way of the flow of capital never stops it; it stops some, and reroutes the rest through the people with the least respect for the rule of law.
Legalize the thing that happens anyway and Michigan wins, because our money cannon is bigger than theirs. That made sense 35 years ago, when Bo Schembechler made the same amount that my family just reported on our taxes. Today it won’t cost us much more because the business of college football spent the intervening years extracting whatever the market will bear. Title IX is a hurdle every school is well practiced at leaping, and doesn’t even matter if you just let the players sell their own likenesses (which is only a hurdle because then what about TV?)
Meanwhile... The NCAA says we get "unlimited meals" but we're told rules prohibit us from being fed all summer
— John O'Korn (@JohnOKorn) April 29, 2016
That business is currently set up so that your appreciation for Jourdan Lewis must be funneled through cable providers, Indiana’s tennis coach, a hotel owner in Orlando, and the marketing guy who came up with “1G” to represent “10”. It is also capped at the offer of a degree without debt, provided he doesn’t fail to earn it for myriad reasons. I wouldn’t buy John O’Korn a beer because it’s against the rules and Michigan chooses to funnel some of that cash to enforcing them. Ole Miss doesn’t, and the NCAA doesn’t care, because that would just mean Ole Miss would go back to being as worthless as they ought to be.
So they get three years of Tunsil playing school for a school that couldn’t even teach him what the symbol on his wall means, and playing football for a substandard coach whose main value proposition is looser morals than most in his profession. Hugh Freeze gets to be a wealthy man with a teacher’s vacation schedule who whines about having enough time with his family. And NFL commentators get to act like Laremy Tunsil is the problem. I don’t buy it, and neither should you.
* [Which FTR was probably proceeds from a pyramid scheme sales job, where the kid sells lotions or hair care products or Cutco knives or whatever, and people beyond his immediate family buy from him because he’s a football star.]
YOUR MOMENT OF ZEN