MGoHall Of Fame: We Should Have One

Submitted by Brian on February 29th, 2012 at 1:36 PM

zack-novak-bloodShawn Hunwick of the Michigan hockey team plays against Windsor in an exhibition match at Yost Ice Arena on Sunday, October 4th 2009(SAID ALSALAH/DAILY)

This message board post gave me an idea: this blog should create an e-HOF for Michigan athlete in the sports it covers. Retiring numbers is something that people do 30 years down the road, and probably never in football; legends patches will be issued to like six people. There should be an intermediate ground. Now is the time to create plaques.

First we must set ground rules.

Q: should there be a waiting period?

I remember thinking Michigan should retire Lavell Blanchard's number because he represented the start of a new era in Michigan's basketball program. That didn't so much happen. There's a reason HOFs usually impose a five-year waiting period.

On the other hand, it might be a good idea to be able to recognize players right away, and unlike actual HOFs if we mess up we can implement the Bill Simmons solution by creating a pyramid with the all-timers at the top and the guys were may have gotten over-excited about at the bottom.

Q: what should the criteria be for admission?

For one I think only players who played after 2005, when the blog started, should be eligible—at least at first. There may be a time when we start reaching further back but fundamentally this is about experiencing the careers of the guys who get in, something we can't do with Tom Harmon.

As far as who is a quality candidate, this is some combination of being really good and an ineffable other quality that encompasses having dreads or bleeding all over everything or developing a pathological hatred of the media or absolutely stoning North Dakota or talking up brunette girls in the aftermath of your game-winning kick. Like… this should be a thing Zack Novak gets in, no questions asked. It should be equally about the impact player X has on the pleasure of being a Michigan fan than about being really good. Really good helps, of course.

When Deadspin bothered with their HOF they required a 75% approval rate to get in. Here voting would only be open to >100 point users, I'd imagine. Is that the right number? Should it be a sliding scale such that anyone who just graduated needs 95% and it drops five percent each year until it gets to 75%?

Q: should there be an annual cap on admitees?

I was thinking three, but surveying this hypothetical field of candidates makes that seem slender: RVB, Martin, Novak, Hunwick, Molk. And then there's a backlog of players who have impacted in the era this blog was talking about sports. Maybe there should be a larger inaugural class.

Q: what about sports that don't get coverage around here?

Football, basketball, and hockey are going to get adequate face time. Other sports, not so much. This is largely because they don't get enough attention to have the aforementioned impact. I'd like to recognize everyone else but the reason I don't write about everything is I can't do so competently. Does this thing have a place for the Kellen Russells/Samantha Findleys of the world? Maybe we should set aside a non-revenue spot every other year or something.

The comments are your debating ground.



February 29th, 2012 at 1:53 PM ^

Bear with me.... I agree that a larger first class makes sense, but for the "normal" year votes you should put out a ballot, and everyone can vote for 3 (or 4 or 5) out of the XX players nominated. Another way to do it would be "heisman" style, or NBA MVP style - rank 1, 2, 3, (4, 5?) from the nominees with each garnering a point value. Top 3 point getters get in.

If we're adding players to the HOF, and maybe teams, coaches and administrators, can we have moments/plays? The one that sticks out to me would be Denard's run at ND. Maybe a Play/Moment of the year for each year. You could do calendar year, or school season. Which is it for 2010-2011? Hunwick vs. UND? The hockey team's whole run including winning the CCHA Tourney? Denard's run at ND?

I think having a "Moment" or "Play" of the year could be a good addition also.


February 29th, 2012 at 4:25 PM ^

I would vote against Mike Hart.

I have a feeling that older fans are not as infatuated with him as his contemporaries and younger fans.

The first guy that jumps into my mind as far as needing to be in any Michigan HOF is never going to be a guy who was 0-4 against OSU. Fair or not, it's the biggest game.


February 29th, 2012 at 4:42 PM ^

I grew up watching Jamie Morris and Jim Harbaugh, so I consider myself an older fan--and I think Mike Hart is first-ballot all the way.  He has the most rushing yards in UM history, fergodsakes.  Besides, some ref gives Shawn Crable the benefit of the doubt and maybe that 0-4 doesn't happen...(yes it still hurts).


February 29th, 2012 at 6:49 PM ^

Well, the guy did say 'his first thought' was let's put Mike Hart in this thing. That is the part that I thought was ridiculous. His first thought was of Mike Hart.


I would vote for Jake Long and Chad Henne before I voted for Hart. But It is important to define what constitutes being worthy of enshrinement first, though. Is it just being a really good player or is it something else?

As for going 0-4 against MSU, it is regretable but not the same as doing it against OSU. Just a totally different thing.


February 29th, 2012 at 5:11 PM ^

Hart was the banner image of MGoBlog for years, and not in a "we've randomly used this running back to make a blueprint of football" kind of way but in a "look at this little dude burrowing his way into the end zone when everyone thought he should be stopped 6 yards ago" kind of way.



February 29th, 2012 at 1:56 PM ^

Definately a tremendous idea and yes I'd say that the inaugural class should be larger this first year.  I also agree that this MgoHOF should admit specific teams, administrators, etc in some way, shape, or form.  I do also like the idea of admitting one non-revenue sport person a year too.  The problem with this is that the blog at large doesnt know the merits of a gymnast, field hockey, or whatever player.  I know we do have some posters that specifically follow some of these sports, perhaps this would be a way to tap into their expertise on this all and have them present such and such person's case and go from there.  Kind of like how the NFL HOF admits senior candidates.  Lastly this whole process would be a great way to bridge that summer gap between the end of basketball and hockey to the begining of fall football practice.  Definately would go great in the months of May-July or so. 


February 29th, 2012 at 1:57 PM ^

I love the idea of 95% needed the first year after graduating, then it goes down each year to be more inclusive.

I dislike the idea of setting aside a certain 3 spots each year, one for each major sport. HOF members should be admitted only when it's really warranted, otherwise you'll end up with no one to induct for basketball next year (Vogrich is the only senior, IIRC)

Also like the idea of a larger inaugural class, and the individual plays idea is an intriguing one. Perhaps another distinction could be handed out each year like a special achievement award at the Oscars if something seems worthy: for instance, I'd deem Stu & Novak both deserve recognition for being so unheralded and helping drag M basketball up to its current level.


February 29th, 2012 at 1:58 PM ^

My first vote would have to be casted to Mr. Howard for Football, Mr. Larkin for Baseball, Mr. Rice for Basketball, and Mr. Berenson for Hockey


February 29th, 2012 at 1:59 PM ^

I suggest that you can have up to 5 inductees from each graduating class, emphasis on up to. It would be done in 3 rounds:

1. Throw out names for consideration.

2. Vote each name individually to determine if they deserve to get in. 75% could probably work because of step 3.

3. If more than 5 people receive approval, then everyone votes for their top 3 and the 5 that receive the most votes get in. If 5 or fewer receive approval then that's your inductee class right there.


In addition to this, each year we can add 1 new inductee from years past and we'd go through the same selection process as above except step 1. For step 1, the pool of players is decided by players that received approval in step 2 after graduating or players that have played professionally in their sports for at least 3 years. There would have to be some sort of grandfather rule for people like Mike Hart, etc.

Six Zero

February 29th, 2012 at 1:59 PM ^

There should be something we bestow upon these legends.  Five or more years ago this thing would have been just a list... but now we live in a time where Tremendous or Ace can make a few calls and have these legitimate heroes put their DVRs on pause just to play in our obsessive little games.

We need to give them... something.  A special shirt, an elite membership of the blog, a comp of the 2009 HTTV... I don't know, something.

But yeah, love the idea.


February 29th, 2012 at 2:21 PM ^

I also think the award needs to intentionally be somewhat goofy.  It's going to be unintentionally goofy if we look like we're taking a blog hall of fame too seriously...I realize that I maybe didn't need to say this.

My name ... is Tim

February 29th, 2012 at 2:01 PM ^

If Based Solely on What They Did for Michigan:

Denard, Manningham, Hart, Novak, Douglass, D-Mo, [Insert Hockey Players here] 


If Based Purely on Ironic MGoBlog Soft-spots:

Taco Pants, Zoltan, Will Hagerup's Face, Laval Lucas-Perry, Anthony Wright, Ronald Johnson/Kris Frost/Dee Hart/Alex Kozan, The Steiner Brothers, The_Knowledge


February 29th, 2012 at 2:01 PM ^

Now I just need to get to 100 points in order to vote.  I think the idea of having a list of players to choose from is a good idea.  It shouldn't be limited to 1 athlete per sport.


February 29th, 2012 at 3:57 PM ^

What about us 25 year plus alums?  While there was no blog back in the day, some of us can remember some great athletes from that era that may warrant consideration. Just because we may have recently discovered the blog (or it didn't exist) doesn't necessarily mean we should be precluded from its composition; or does it?


February 29th, 2012 at 4:53 PM ^

I think the point of excluding pre-2005 players is that if you go back far enough, we will be discussing people that no one living has ever saw play.  I mean, I'm sure Benny Friedman and Tom Harmon were just as awesome as they are described in the things I've read about them--but having been born decades after they played I really can't compare those players to today's players.  Younger fans of today might remember Chad Henne or John Navarre or even Tom Brady, but how can someone born in 1989 offer a meaningful opinion on whether John Kolesar belongs in the HOF?  You have to draw the line somewhere, and using the year of the blog's launch seems to be a logical cut-off point.


February 29th, 2012 at 2:06 PM ^

One more idea...a HOF for BEST threads, reserved for the iconic threads we see every now and then.

I will explain why -

I started reading this blog in the weeks leading up to signing day 2011, a about 14 months ago.  After signing day, everything recruiting related cooled off.  But, during the next few months, I really enjoyed reading some of the OT and other non-recruiting related posts for the insight, humor, and user comments.  A select few are in the HOF in my heart.

I say this because I think a tab at the top for HOF threads would be an attractive link for new users (it would have been for me) to get the "hooked" like I quickly became. 

I think it truely could boost the readership, especially in the off-peak times.

Just a thought from a fan... 


February 29th, 2012 at 2:07 PM ^

I think this is a great idea. I am personally in favor of the sliding scale model, starting at 95% and decreasing until it hits 75%. As far as class size goes, 3 revenue sports + 1 non-revenue  per year seems reasonable. Inagural class size should be 21 revenue and 7 non-revenue max, matching the number eligible for each year the blog has been active prior to now.

The question is, would the entire career of a player have to fall within the existence of the blog in order to be eligible?


February 29th, 2012 at 2:07 PM ^

If you are only going back to 2005, then instead of having a larger inaugural class, why not just construct retroactive ballots for each year since then and conduct a separate vote for each year. With one vote per month, we would be caught up by fall.

I would suggest an 85% requirement with a limit of 5 inductees per year across all sports. Anyone who got over 85% but did not finish in the top 5 would be carried over to next year's ballot.

Hank Hill

February 29th, 2012 at 2:07 PM ^

I agree the bar needs to be real high. I don't want to look at someone ten years down the road and be ashamed that they got into the HOF.
Obviously guys like Henne, Hart, and Long need to be first ballot guys. What about Lloyd Carr? Do we count his whole tenure or just his years while the blog existed? Woodson should get in for his continued work with Mott's.
I nominate Jordan Kovacs for being the first serviceable safety we have seen since the dawn of the new millennium.