Mostly Old Mailbag!

Submitted by Brian on September 17th, 2008 at 3:53 PM

Sometimes I am lame and don't answer questions in a timely fashion. So some of this stuff makes no the sense, as I meant to post this up before the ND game. Bear with me.


Why do our quarterbacks clap to initiate the play?. Is a traditional snap count something Rod has done away with to simplify the offense or is this just a feature of his spread? Our o-line is a weakness as it is, I don't think we need to make it any easier on opposing defenders...

Mike S

I’m just as puzzled about the clapping as you are. The process appears to be:

  • The offense sets.
  • The quarterback raises his leg like you see most NFL QBs do in the shotgun.
  • The QB checks with the sideline for a new play.
  • QB claps, center snaps.

I’m pretty sure Michigan isn’t using no snap count whatsoever, it’s just that the count is silent. DEs don’t have license to time the snap with impunity. There will be variable pauses between the clap and the snap.


Michigan lines up in a set, ready-to-snap position to force the defense to reveal its formation, but after they go to the sidelines you'll see a lot of shifting by the D, making the first read of questionable value. Michigan hasn't snapped it after the first ready-snap signal yet… why? It would seem a good opportunity to catch the opponent napping.

I chalk it up to inexperience with the offense; I assume we'll see it later this year and in future years when Rodriguez isn't working with the equivalent of all freshmen.

Hey Brian,

How worried should we be that Rodriguez seems to be using too many scholarships on 3-star backs and receivers when we're in pretty severe need of, say, linebackers, DEs and O-linemen? I guess he probably knows what he's doing, but I feel like somebody needs to tell him, "hey, you're Michigan now, you can recruit sweet players at positions of need. And if you're going to stockpile that many skill guys on offense, you can at least get the good ones."

John Eagal

This email is a little old and was written before the Lalota commitment, but the point still stands. Until I knock it down. Michigan's three star skill commitments are:

  • Teric Jones, who a lot of people think will move up.
  • Vincent Smith. Smith is like 5'8 or 5'6", so he's not going to get high guru rankings unless he's ridiculous a la Noel Devine. But he's a fit for the spread at a spot (slot/RB) where Michigan needs more numbers.
  • DeWayne Peace. Peace was the one camp offer/commit this year. Michigan usually got a few of these guys under Carr, so that's not out of line. Peace is also a potential corner.

That doesn't seem out of line when you consider that Michigan has a solid four-star RB in Fitzgerald Toussaint and a top-100 WR in Bryce McNeal. And no tight ends, ever again.

Meanwhile, Michigan is on track for a Lalota-Jones-Campbell-Roh DL (which reads excellent-good-sick-excellent in terms of guru hype and offers). They've got four-ish LBs in the class. And they'll be graduating no offensive linemen.

At this point the biggest needs are in the secondary, where Michigan has one excellent prospect in JT Turner and will probably pick up three-star safety Thomas Gordon but needs another two guys, and on the OL, where you'd like to see them acquire one or two more guys.

Hi Brian,

I have a question for you.  I have located lists of things to do or see when I have been going to a couple of other colleges to watch games (Notre Dame, Michigan St), but I haven't ever seen a list of things to do or see when you are going to a Michigan game, other then at Maize N Brew, and I can't eat that much pizza.  I had a great time touring around Notre Dame and walking around State before the Michigan/State game last year. 

I am wondering if you can give a bit of help to a Canadian who is a big Michigan fan, but has yet to see many of the game day festivities on his trips to the big house, other then the stadium itself and saline rd.  Any advice?


This email so old that I think this guy may have come and gone, but it's a good question anyway. I have a Visitors Guide to Ann Arbor in the works that has an ETA of 2009; for now I suggest checking out Arbor Wiki for a general overview of stuff and (debatably accurate since they don't have an entry that says STAY AWAY FROM "MONKEY BAR" AT ALL COSTS) restaurant/bar recommendations.

Personally, I don't really know much in the way of what goes on for gameday festivities because my routine since time immemorial has been to go to my family tailgate. Can commenters/emailers help?

Via Mike Krautner comes this summary of the Orin Incandenza action from the first two games:

Below is a list of of the yards for each of our opponents 14 punts this season:

52, 38 (but to the Michigan 11 yard line), 36 (touchback), 59, Blocked, 48, 50, 56, 55, 53, 74, 35 (but to the Michigan 10 yard line), 58, 46.

What a nightmare for a team with an awful offense (and a clueless punt returner).


And, finally, there's no way to post this without ripping off Bill Simmons:


Yes, someone got a custom-made MGoOnesie for their baby. I have to say it: yep, these are my readers.



September 18th, 2008 at 9:35 PM ^

yeah, the beer was skunky, the burgers were nasty, they even screwed up the fries. How the hell do you screw up french fries! I guess they found away. The sports watching capabilities at the place is pretty bad too. Save your money and go to the Arena which has much better drink specials.


September 17th, 2008 at 4:20 PM ^

I'm going to an MSU game later this season.  Would the fellow who had the "things to do at an MSU game" list be so kind as to post it here? (or anyone else who has some ideas, for that matter) Thanks!


West Texas Blue

September 17th, 2008 at 5:01 PM ^

Poor Brian, he has to deal with so many emails bitching about recruiting.  Considering he was responding to an old email on recruiting, I'm sure his inbox is flooded with emails with people bitching and moaning about possibly losing recruitments by the boatload after the ND loss.  Where's the faith in Rich Rod?


September 17th, 2008 at 5:25 PM ^

I'm slightly biased, as I was in the MMB, but checking out marching band practice is usually fun and always fires me up for the game. You can get the band's game-day routine from their website (, but they're usually out there at 8AM for a noon game, or 10AM for a later game. And if you don't want to get there that early, the percussion and flag corps puts on a step show about 90 minutes prior to kickoff in front of Revelli Hall.

The best tailgating is usally found on the golf course, but it's pricey. I know it was $40 and God forbid if they increased the prices this year.