Unverified Voracity Is Cooler Than Dan Persa

Submitted by Brian on November 30th, 2010 at 2:49 PM

Elsewhere in the thoughts of people who are Dave Brandon. Brandon speaking on the football team's season:

"The team has the opportunity to practice 15 days and prepare for a bowl game, which they've earned the right to," Brandon said. "I have so consistently stated what my process is, how I do this, and what is in the best interest of the program. That's what I do, and that's what I'm going to do. All of this desire for information sooner, all this speculation is fueling curiosity — it doesn't change how I'm doing my job.

"Back when we were 5-0, I said (this would be the evaluation process), along the way, I've said it, after exciting wins I've said it. This is how I'm going to do my job. I have not equivocated on that at all. Just because people out there are stirring the pot, that's not going to deter what I'm going to do."

Since every scenario out there has Michigan in a bowl on New Year's Day or a few days after Christmas (the Insight is the 28th), the final word will have to wait a full month. Stanford is likely headed to the Fiesta Bowl on January first, so a hypothetical transition could take place immediately without putting Harbaugh in the same bind Miles or Kelly was. There's a theory floating out there that letting Rodriguez coach the bowl is tantamount to keeping him for 2011, but given the Harbaugh situation I don't think that's true. It's not an indication either way.

Harbaugh will not be at the Football Bust on Thursday, at which the '85 team will be honored. Tickets are still available, BTW.

Denard Robinson: awesome. Not a quarterback. So Denard Robinson is the Big Ten's offensive player of the year, which is nice and obvious. He's also not even on the coaches' All Big Ten list, which lolwut? I get Scott Tolzien—he may not have to throw much but when he does it's in the chest of his receiver every time—but Dan Persa? He's got the numbers, I guess, but being at the helm of an offense that's actually good at scoring and stuff is kind of important for a QB and the Wildcats are just 51s in total offense, 74th in scoring, and 21st in passer efficiency. That last number sounds good but is only 5th in a QB-heavy Big Ten. Kirk Cousins, Tolzien, Stanzi, and Pryor are all ahead of him with Denard not far behind and with a vast advantage on the ground.

In other All Big Ten QB news, Terrelle Pryor is still as likeable as Stalin.

Steadily more and more likeable. Meanwhile, Tate Forcier explained to his local paper his thought process about staying with the program after the infamous "I'm out" moment that sent Tom scrambling to Papa Forcier to put out the fire. Via MGoShoe:

“It’s hard to go from starting to backing up. A lot of people told me to leave. I wanted to leave. But it was just too hard. I didn’t want to leave the (coaching) staff or these players. I felt I was going to be a part of something great.”

“Two quarterbacks have to play in this offense. It might not happen every game, but you’re going to get your chance. I’m not banking on Denard getting injured. Nothing like that. But in this offense, you never know what can happen.”

“A lot of people would think me and Denard would have something against each other because he starts, but Denard is a good guy. We hang out. And he works hard. What’s hard for me is he’s having so much success and there’s nothing you can do about it except stay ready.”

“I’ve learned to be way more humble. I look back at freshman year, and I was a little cocky. I was getting too caught up in seeing myself on TV every week. I think that would happen to anybody who would go from being a regular kid in high school to a national stage like that. It was crazy.”

I said something early in the year about how Michigan would need Forcier down the stretch, and they did. He finished off the Illinois win and was a third and ten stop away from driving for the tie against Iowa; if he'd actually been "out" Michigan would not have been able to redshirt Gardner and we probably wouldn't be talking about retaining Rodriguez at all.

I also said I'd be meh about Rodriguez leaving, and while that's largely true I think my overwhelming feeling would be sadness that guys like Denard and Forcier and everyone else who signed up for the RR era would not get to finish their careers on the terms they started them.

These uniforms designed for personal fouls. Another reason it's good to get away from Nike:

"The gloves had a black ‘Block O' on the inside when you put your hands together and so that's what (Posey) was trying to do," receiver Dane Sanzenbacher said.

But he didn't celebrate his redemption for long. The referee gave Posey a 15-yard penalty for excessive celebration.

Gesturing to the crowd, even if it's your crowd, gets you a flag. Unless it's this…

Michigan QB Tate Forcier (5) plays against Notre Dame in Ann Arbor, MI on Saturday, September 12, 2009. Michigan went on to win the game 38-34 (SAID ALSALAH/Daily)

…or dozens of other motions like shushing the crowd that go unpunished every week. File under the massive pile of data that suggests the NCAA should just drop excessive celebration penalties for anything short of taunting.

Opinions I Officially Do Not Care About but you might. Opinions on the Rodriguez job thing—you know, that—from Mets Maize:

Having said that, I do support Rich Rodriguez returning for 2011 IF changes are made on the defensive staff. My reasons are pretty consistent listed above, but the one that stands out the most is the offense. It simply makes no sense to fire the only man who can take this offense to the next level next year. People often talk about how "young" our defense is, which sort of implies we have a relatively older offense. If by "older" we mean not true-freshman, then yes, we have a veteran offense. But the fact is we're prime for not only 2011 but also 2012--Denard's senior year. So that leaves the defense to which I ask...

What added benefit does a change in HEAD COACH give to the DEFENSE that a change in DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR wouldn't bring?

Beaford at Maize n Brew:

Rodriguez should get broomed and Harbaugh should be installed here, but if that doesn't happen my reaction will largely be "meh."  In the three years that he has been the head coach, the offense have demonstrably improved, just as we thought it would.  The problem is that the defense has actually regressed each year.  Even before the Woolfolk injury, this defense was set up to be likely the worst in program history.

And Markus at MNB drops references to David Foster Wallace on Federer and Brian Phillips on Pele, which means it gets autolinked. It's long and not really blockquote-friendly but recommended. My mom, by the way, believes Rodriguez is "not a Michigan Man" and would like to see him gone. Road Games also drops Richard Buckner.

Let's say it again, then.

Etc.: Anne Hathaway proposes "Anne Does Ann Arbor." As someone who has viewed the Get Smart remake I heartily endorse this idea. This Week In Schadenfreude is epic this week. Apparently I missed the date on the "Everyone in Iowa Drinks Four Loko" fanpost at Black Heart Gold Pants, but seriously I'm guessing that happened again after they lost to Minnesota. Brabbs surveys the Michigan-vs-cancer matchups going on. AnnArbor.com's take on the Denard Robinson story.


Ben from SF

November 30th, 2010 at 4:27 PM ^

If Mike Singletary ever sets foot in Ann Arbor as a coach affiliated with the Michigan program, I will stop my donations.

Singletary is a heck of a motivator, but the next time he diagrams a blitz will be his first.  That man offers nothing strategically.  He also suffers from a bad case of verbal diarrhea and is apparently allegic to pants.

Icehole Woody

November 30th, 2010 at 4:03 PM ^

I think the style of football Harbaugh would implement has a better chance of success at Michigan and the Big Ten than what I've been watching for the last three years.   The last four years have been unbelievable.  2007 was an abomination despite the win over Florida in the bowl game.  2008 through this year waseven worse.  It seems like Michigan has been starting freshmen by the bushel everywhere for the last three years.  I never like the phrase "hold the rope" but it has turned out to be more appropriate than "those who stay will be champions."

It's time to get back to Michigan football and tradition.


Go Blue!


November 30th, 2010 at 11:37 PM ^

that the type of offense that has been successful in the Pac-10 and Big 12 and SEC and WAC and Big East and ACC isn't working in the Big Ten. (There may be others, but those are just the ones I could list off the top of my head: examples, not conferences themselves.)


November 30th, 2010 at 4:09 PM ^

The talented, arrogant, spoiled M fanbase; the talented, arrogant, spoiled HC from WV; the talented, arrogant, spoiled QB from San Diego are all related.  Not sure how, but they're all supposed to get resolved together.  Tate is Act I


November 30th, 2010 at 4:18 PM ^

One of my kids went to Navy.  I attended the 2008 Army-Navy game.  Late in that game, a Navy LB got a long pick-6, and as he rounded through the endzone he shot a fine military salute to the Midshipmen in the stands.  There was nobody in that stadium in Philadelphia, including the Army Cadets, who thought that slaute was unsportsmanlike.  It did not draw a penalty, but could have under the NCAA rule.

Proof that, short of taunting, the penalty should not be called. QED


November 30th, 2010 at 4:19 PM ^

If Stanford goes to the Fiesta it means someone picking ahead of the Fiesta took the Big East champ.  Not likely.  The Fiesta is gonna be Big 12/Big East.  The Rose may take Stanford, but it's more likely to take TCU to play Wisconsin so it can get out from that non-AQ clause while it still has a good team to take.  Stanford's BCS hopes hinge on the Orange and Sugar wanting them over a close team like Arkansas, LSU, or Ohio State.  In other words, hello Alamo against Okie State.

Kilgore Trout

November 30th, 2010 at 4:31 PM ^

Stanford is up to #4 in the BCS, so they are now an automatic qualifier.  The top 4 get a BCS bowl, guaranteed.  They don't play again, so I don't see any scenario where they would drop.  The four teams after Stanford are done for the season too.  If Oklahoma demolished Nebraska something fierce, maybe they would jump, but going from #9 to #4 while passing five teams that aren't playing seems unlikely, to say the least. 


November 30th, 2010 at 5:41 PM ^

O I C.  Thanks for setting me straight.

Stanford to the Orange or Sugar, then, which really only helps Brian's theory since those are even later than Jan. 1.  I still think the Rose will take TCU and nobody's gonna be dumb enough to take UConn or WVU or whatever if they could have an actual good team.


November 30th, 2010 at 5:19 PM ^

by this projection at first too.  Why would any bowl pick the Big East champ over a 1-loss, #4 ranked Stanford?  Answer:  $$$$.

The assumption is that the Orange Bowl will choose to pass over a west coast team whose fan base doesn't travel all that well for a team from the east coast.

I actually hope this scenerio plays out.  Oklahoma/Nebraska versus Stanford is significantly more appealing of a match up than the Big East champ versus the ACC champ.  Alternately, both match ups would be lackluster.

Edit:  Maybe the Virginian in you is looking forward to the potential West Virginia versus Virginia Tech clash.


November 30th, 2010 at 4:21 PM ^

if he'd actually been "out" Michigan would not have been able to redshirt Gardner


Seriously, is there word on a medical redshirt?  This would be great news.


November 30th, 2010 at 4:43 PM ^

What added benefit does a change in HEAD COACH give to the DEFENSE that a change in DEFENSIVE COORDINATOR wouldn't bring?

The benefit is that the prospective new HC (Harbaugh) appears to be a guy who doesn't hamstring his DCs by choosing the scheme and position coaches for them. 

If RR is to succeed here, he can't just dump GERG.  He must realize that his attitude towards the D has been flawed.  If he changes coordinators but keeps Tall and Gibson and/or maintains his love for a watered-down 3-3-5, we'll be going nowhere. 


November 30th, 2010 at 7:08 PM ^

This I agree with to an extent, but I expect that a change to the DC will have to include a loosening of the reins by RR on the entire defensive front.  And while RR's tight bond with his assistant coaches has hurt the team on the defensive side, we have no idea about Harbaugh's allegiances and how those might affect this team.  My whole argument with a coaching change is that the grass isn't always greener on the other side; sometimes it is just as green but looks different from where you are standing.  Yes, this defense was going to be bad heading into the year, but the sheer number of injuries and baby secondary clearly was a major factor in the historically-bad production.


December 1st, 2010 at 2:51 AM ^

RR has a defensive philosophy based on beating Louisville, Cincinnati, and USF.

He needs to learn to read a schedule and a map.  He's going to play OSU, Nebraska, MSU, Iowa every year.  They aint going away.  He needs a defense that can match up to those teams.

Forget the Big East.  He already "won" the Big East this year.  It's time to join the Big Ten, Rich.


November 30th, 2010 at 5:53 PM ^

Damn dude, there is no getting away from it for Brian. I'm sure everyone wants to hear what he's got to say and either can't/won't read that thing where he writes down his opinion everyday or wants to talk about what he wrote. Yet another reason why I resist starting a blog...my talent deficit has nothing to do with it; nothing at all.

Beveled Guilt, mofos...


November 30th, 2010 at 6:33 PM ^

Brian, thanks for the link to the link. I don't get soccer, but the writer is writing about DFW and sport, and it made me get soccer a little better, and it was a joy to read, like the DFW essays on tennis.

Mgoblog is a joy to read as well.

We should all celebrate David Molk's getting the recognition he deserves from the coaches. Whatever else is true about this year, the offensive line play was good to watch, in the best tradition of Michigan football. It may not have been roadgrader o-line play, but it was smart and effective.


November 30th, 2010 at 7:08 PM ^

Sure, the offense has progressed yards wise, but if we're only putting up 7-10 points a game on good defenses, how good really is this offense? We turn the ball over and make stupid mistakes on offense and once again...CAN'T SCORE.  To me, it seems like a poorly coached team in general with an offense that has potential, but just can't get the job done vs. a good opponent.


November 30th, 2010 at 7:20 PM ^

I realize the OSU game is freshest in memory, but here are the point totals in the losses this year:

MSU:  17

Iowa:  28

PSU:  31

Wisconsin:  28

OSU:  7

That's an average of 22.2, hardly 7-10, and a less-than-catastrophic defense gives the offense more possessions with which to score points.


December 1st, 2010 at 4:45 AM ^

The offense has progressed argument is difficult to make when you only put up 7 on OSU.

Bottom line, even though we knew that the transition would be difficult, I don't think anyone expected it to be this difficult.  To break our bowl streak, to incur sactions (though for trumped up reasons), and to lose as many players as he has is really unacceptable. 

In my opinion, RR's biggest mistake was not keeping Ron English at DC.  If anything would have made a difference in where we are defensively it would be to have kept in place the existing staff on D and to focus on the transition the offense.  I think he was too arrogant in this regard.

That said, the only two options are Harbaugh as Head Coach or RR get's another year.  I believe there is no way that DB makes a change and doesn't get Harbaugh.  There are really only two camps that appear here, those who would welcome a change to Harbaugh and those who think RR should get one more year.  In fact I would prefer to keep RR over Les Miles or other similar options.

I might also be ok with Lloyd Carr coming out of retirement. :-)

Eye of the Tiger

November 30th, 2010 at 8:24 PM ^

Harbaugh probably won't come until after the bowl game.  This means we're going to wait for a while before we know for sure who's coaching next year.  DB is going to get mighty tired answering these questions over and over again.  

Of course, what if RR decides to take matters into his own hands and bolt for Miami or Pitt?  I can see him being sick of the media circus surrounding him here, and since he was fine with bolting a BCS-bound program in 2007, he probably wouldn't have too many scruples about leaving an Insight-bowl bound one...