Unverified Voracity Cheats At Dodgeball Comment Count

Brian June 24th, 2015 at 12:00 PM

Dodgeball got heated. Denard and Devin talk to Isaiah Hole at the A4 camp:

Battle status. Still no commitment, apparently planning on taking what would be his final official visit to either UConn or Kentucky, door with Michigan may remain open. Jarron Cumberland's visit did not result in a commit($) and there is no public mention of an offer, but Sam Webb says that things went very well and that you shouldn't read much into that.

Meanwhile, Syracuse blog Nunes Magician* has some insider info:

NunesMagician.com was told earlier today that the official visit went "very well," but Jim Boeheim did not receive a commitment. …

As each day goes by, Syracuse fans should feel less optimistic. The staff has been on the 5-star New Jersey native since his freshman year. He has visited the campus multiple times, but is still tentative to pull the trigger.

This is kind of how I feel about Jonathan Jones, the Florida linebacker who seems like he's been on the verge of a commit for months now.

In any case, Duke is not getting involved again, Syracuse doesn't seem like a particularly appealing destination for Battle for whatever reason (a good one: they are down a quarter of their scholarships for as long as Battle will be in college), and UConn is currently in the American. If he does visit Kentucky that blows up the "distance is the main factor" thing.

Maybe the door is still open? If not it sounds like Cumberland will be in the class pretty soon.

*[The name of this is a long story involving a bad quarterback.]

Bonjour pronto. That's French, right? Alpaca-outta-nowhere commit Benjamin St-Juste is Canadian, and if we've learned anything from South Park it's that Canada's a little bit different than the United States. One of the differences is that Canadian high school is apparently as long as you want it to be.

People were talking about St-Juste as  2016 or 2017 commit yesterday; today Tim Sullivan notes that there's a chance he could come in this fall($), as he's around 18—the usual age you enter college. I think there will be room, and the corner depth is going to be iffy after this year so you may as well.

Unnecessary dumping on Java aside. Summer Swarm commit Rashad Weaver sounds like an exceptional student:

An accomplished student throughout his high school career at Cooper City High School outside Fort Lauderdale, Florida, most of Weaver's courses are of the advanced-placement or honors variety. Meaning his grade-point average can soar above the customary 4.0, if he's able to push it that high.

During his sophomore year, he had it up to a 4.6. But as a junior, a simple misdirection had him aggravated.

Weaver enrolled in an AP computer science class as a junior. He knew it'd be a challenge, but figured he'd be able to hang. And then things got started.

"It turned out to be a class that was basically for kids who did Java coding at home for fun," Weaver chuckles. "So, yeah, it was tough."

Mr. Weaver, this is my advice to you: if you ever see "LISP" on a course description, run like hell. This is my advice to all people. Emeril! Run like hell if you ever see this:


Now there will be a computer science hipster in the comments talking about how LISP is really elegant because of closures. I apologize in advance.

Anyway, you probably don't come here so I can dump on obscure programming languages. A little more on Weaver:

he appeared at Michigan's satellite camp stop in south Florida with some hope and not much else. At best, Weaver figured he could catch the attention of a Big Ten school. At worst, he knew he'd leave the event a better football player.

It was a win-win, he figured.

And, as is often the case in the classroom, he was right.

"The main reason I went to the camp was because I saw Michigan coaches would be there. I saw it as an opportunity, figured I'd do my best to put my best foot forward and do everything I could to get noticed," Weaver says. "I figured at least it'd be something where I could get better. I was going to go out there and do my best. If I showed well, then they'd notice me. If not, then maybe it wasn't meant to be.

"But I went knowing I'd get better one way or another. And it all worked out."

At 6'5", 245, Weaver is one of the infinite DE/TE prospects Michigan will bring in as long as Harbaugh's around. We probably won't know where he sticks until he's a junior.

Next year will not be the year. Northwestern's never been to the NCAA tournament. This is their nonconference schedule:


A tourney, road games against VT and DePaul, and then garbage.

They do get two of UNC/KState/Mizzou in their tourney. If that even helps much:

Brutal. And this is a team that returns everyone except oft-injured senior JerShon Cobb and little-used Dave Sobolewski; they've got a senior version of Alex Olah and Tre Demps. This is the kind of Northwestern team that could possibly maybe put themselves on the bubble. But if they are, they're going to be crushed by their own schedule.

Etc.: The Puff Daddy thing is the weirdest. Zach Werenski profiled for the draft. A4 camp report. O'Bannon "one of the most significant antitrust cases of this era," says judge. Carr speaks at a Big Brothers, Big Sisters event.Take a picture: this UV has no mention of a weird thing Harbaugh did.



June 24th, 2015 at 12:14 PM ^

LISP is really elegant, but the syntax is nasty.  Haskell is where it's at!

(Where else but MGoBlog can you find jokes about computer programming languages alongside football recruiting talk??)


June 24th, 2015 at 12:29 PM ^

I finally registered just to join the Lisp discussion! I mean, we wouldn't want any misconceptions about a 50 year old dialect of programming languages to propagate through a sports blog; that would be a disaster!

Closures are fine, but what really makes Lisp dialects special is the homoiconicity that leads to the various meta-programming/macro features the languages exhibit. You get used to the parens, or you switch to a dialect, like Clojure, that has syntactical features to help mitigate them.

I do concur on how awesome Haskell is!


June 24th, 2015 at 1:08 PM ^

At my wife's last job, she got super frustrated because it seemed like she was the only person there who knew how to use formulas in a spreadsheet. Things that took everyone else days took her minutes, but it also meant that she was exasperated beyond belief when she had to maintain other people's spreadsheets.

I told her that she now knew how programmers felt about basically everyone.


June 24th, 2015 at 6:10 PM ^

This is my life.  I do in hours what other people here do in weeks...and then they leave the company and I inherit tens of thousands of lines of code written by a pharmacist then copied and modified by another pharmacist with everything hardcoded and half the code leading nowhere and the other half referencing itself.  Or just inherited from other bad programmers who just put band-aids over everything and run everything manually.  Ugh.  But, I've found my people, and theyre on mgoblog!


June 24th, 2015 at 1:24 PM ^

Couldn't agree more!

The major thing that gives me pause about using a Lisp dialect on a large project is the need to maintain it. Dynamically-typed languages seem great when you're just deveoping something because they don't get in your way, and the whole idea is fresh in your mind, so it feels easy and natural. But what happens when you have to revisit the project to make changes two years (or even two months!) later? I lean heavily on strong, statically-typed systems when I'm refactoring old code. You might have forgotten about your code, but if you've got types, your compiler can help remind you about a lot of it.

All that said, it's really hard to put into words just how much learning about Lisp can change your outlook on programming, from top to bottom. I almost never get to use it, but it's greatly impacted me nonetheless.


June 24th, 2015 at 1:50 PM ^

This is awesome.

I've dabbled with clojure, but never had any major work project for which to use it, so I've not fully wrapped my head around it (nor LISP).

I'm down with Java (and various Java-related frameworks such as Spring, JPA, JMS, and a long list of them, actually). And, I recently bult a fairly complex client-server system with C# .NET, WCF, and Entity Framework - that went quite well (despite my initial preference for the Java world). I've always preferred the statically-typed languages, but, I've done my share of PHP, Javascript work as well.

This will get a chuckle out of some of you, I'm sure. Back in my day at M (1979-83) I was a Chemistry major and only took one CS class. It was the intro class, and we had to do our programming on punchcards (in ALGOL-W). They did have green-screen terminals available, but they were reserved for more advanced classes/students (and faculty, no doubt). I did my senior honors thesis in computational quatum chemistry, so I eventually spent lots of time on a green-screen, but OMG, working on punchchards was quite an experience.


June 24th, 2015 at 2:20 PM ^

C# is my current language of choice for practical work. The people in charge of it have done a wonderful job of taking practical lessons from its predecessors and blending it with useful incarnations of modern, high-level programming constructs. The language evolves quickly, but in a controlled, logical way. You don't find that the language has become unrecognizable, but neither do you find yourself trapped in an old, unproductive, dead language. Between that and the fact that I'm just really familiar with it (having to use it at work all the time), when I want to knock something out quickly, that's where I go.


June 24th, 2015 at 2:45 PM ^


And, on the topic of C# and statically vs. dynaically typed variables, do you use C#'s pseudo dynamically typed syntax for local variable declarations ('var') or do you prefer to be explicit with your type declarations? I find myself using 'var' preferentially (and, this coming from a strong proponent of statically typed languages) because my teammates do (and I prefer the consistency in our code base).

I use JetBrains ReSharper extention for VS and I've learned quite a lot about C# from that alone. Often times it will suggest converting my loop contruct into a LINQ expression (which I generally allow it to convert unless it totally obscures the intent and/or readability of the code logic).


June 24th, 2015 at 3:01 PM ^

I love "var." I wouldn't even call it "pseudo-dynamic," since the type is completely determined at compile-time and goes through all the same type checks as any other type. Heck, in C#, Visual Studio will happily tell you what type has been inferred in the IDE. 

For me, people's issues with type inference tend to get to the heart of how people think about programming. If you have a very "mechanical" view of programming, type inference seems scary because it's hiding information from you that you want to determine "what" and "how" your program executes. If you've written very imperative code with lots of side effects, if the names and types in your program don't match domain specific concepts, then one little type change can indeed wreak havoc.

On the other hand, if you're committed to a more "semantic" view of programming, and are using the type system (classes, interfaces, etc) and function names to express semantically important concepts, then type changes are nearly (not always, of course) irrelevant. The concrete types of objects become less important than the operations the types support. If your code compiled, it's because all the types checked out and all the operations you required are supported. Furthermore, it makes the presence of a explicit type declaration important: when you find a situation where type inference hasn't been used, that's an indication that the specific type is important, not just its interface. This greatly increases the signal-to-noise ratio in your code base: explicit types if and only if the concrete type is important; type inference if and only if the interface is what's important (which really ought to be the usual case in a well-structured code base).

Clearly, I care way too much about this issue.


June 24th, 2015 at 5:34 PM ^

But, an interface *is* an explicit type, no?

I cut my teeth in the OOD/OOP world on technologies like MS COM (and, to a lesser extent COBRA) wherein the whole idea of designing and programming by contract/interface was that the interfaces defined explicit types and the methods on such interfaces also were fully explicit with regard to the contract of/for a specific communication method (i.e., all params were explicitly typed and return value was explicitly typed, and many of those types were also interfaces). Thus, in order to create a service which I want exposed to the outside world via its contract (its public interfaces) I must be explicit.

Perhaps you and I are saying the same thing, but, in any case, I appreciate your discussion of the importance of semantics in programming. That certainly makes sense.


June 25th, 2015 at 9:04 AM ^

It depends on how you're using the word "interface." If by "interface" you mean something like C#'s "interface" keyword or you mean something like C++'s pure abstract base classes, then yes, an interface will have an explicit type associated with it.

But what type inference does is it allows us to write against implicit interfaces. If I store the result of a computation in a variable declared with the "var" keyword, the type of that variable is implicit (though known statically at compile-time). Any subsequent operations I perform on that value represent an implicit interface for that particular context. For example, if I store the result of a multplication in a "var" variable and then proceed to subtract another number from that result, we can say that the "interface" for this value in this context is that it must support subtraction. Any value that supports subtraction will work here, whether it's an int, short, long, float, double, decimal, etc, regardless of whether or not there exists an explicit ISupportSubtraction or ISubtractable interface (or whatever) somewhere. Any type that supports subtraction works implicitly.

Without "var," I would have to fix an explicit type there to that variable. Whereas with "var," my code will continue to work as long as the result of my multiplication also supports subtraction, now my code will break if the type of the value returned by the multiplication changes, even if that type also still supports subtraction. I will have to go update that type, even if the exact type is unimportant and the semantics of the program are unchanged.

Now obviously, there are some situations where that type *is* important. If I'm about to write the result of my computation to a binary file or send it out over the network in binary format, it matters a great deal that I don't write out a float when I mean to write out a short. In this case, the explicit typing adds a very important piece of context: it tells us that the exact type is incredibly important here and I should pay a great deal of attention to it. Without type inference, all my variables have to have explicit types, so the presence of an explicit type is ambiguous in meaning: is this variable typed because the type is important for correct operation of the program or because I simply had to provide a type? Without type inference, you can't say which it is. With type inference, you can see clearly where the concrete type really matters for semantic correctness and where the concrete type is not important, but the implied interface is. This is why I mean by type inference increasing the signal-to-noise ratio of your code.


June 24th, 2015 at 2:28 PM ^

As a freshman at Purdue in '85 (CS major), during orientation, we had a tour of the main terminal room and the adjacent room where people picked up their printouts (from numbered "bins", hanging folders, because you sent your files to the huge dot-matrix printers and the students who worked there would separate the printouts and sort into the bins; obvs you did not want to set your bin to anything divisible by 100, or to the other obvious numbers, otherwise you'd never find your stuff in with all the other underclassmen who thought it was funny to print to bin 69); also in that room were a handful of punch-card readers. Apparently they had recently phased those out for the common folk, so only a few grad students were using them.

I'm grateful for some of the principles I learned when I was there, because holy pants, is a lot of that other stuff outdated now. Even then, things were changing pretty quickly: in six years (I was ... not a devoted student), they'd moved from the monitored dot-matrix printers to self-serve laser printers, and computer labs were popping up on campus - obvs not the way they'd be used now, but the first time I used Office products was in a Mac lab in like 1990.

I'm glad the kids these days (adjusts onion on belt) don't have to go through some of the things we did back in the day.


June 24th, 2015 at 12:27 PM ^

I took a freshman seminar on the college admissions process, it's true that each they will disassemble and recreate your GPA based on what individual grades are on your transcript, so weighted vs unweighted doesn't make any difference. I think the entire basis for weighting GPAs is pointless, it's just fun for these kids to say they have some absurdly high GPA.

Sent from MGoBlog HD for iPhone & iPad


June 24th, 2015 at 12:26 PM ^

People were talking about St-Juste as  2016 or 2017 commit yesterday; today Tim Sullivan notes that there's a chance he could come in this fall

I know that NSD is the earliest a kid can sign for the following fall.  What is the latest?  Is there any deadline at all, or can a kid show up in the fall and be on the roster?


June 24th, 2015 at 12:29 PM ^

A man who could be UCLA's single biggest athletic department benefactor being arrested and dragged off campus in the back of a campus police car

Combs picking the best implement in the weight room for fighting a strength coach out of instinct, which really is some stellar work in the heat of the moment.


June 24th, 2015 at 6:17 PM ^

So many great ways to visualize this attack.  Did he grab the smallest kb and swing that puny thing at him?  Did he grab a large one and quickly realize he can't swing it at all?  Did he use proper kb form and swing from between his legs with his hips?  One-handed? Two-handed? Russian? American?


This deserves an SNL parody skit.


June 24th, 2015 at 12:31 PM ^

Devin and Denard may be my absolute favorite players for Michigan, if for nothing else (of course football) their characters. Denard's smile is infectious and Devin might be the funniest person I've never met. Also seems Harbaugh-esque with the tackling a child thing. 

snarling wolverine

June 24th, 2015 at 12:51 PM ^

It's weird that a small school like Northwestern can be competitive in football, a sport requiring 85 scholarships, but not in basketball with its much smaller roster.  I know basketball recruiting might be dirtier, but still, it's odd.