Unverified Voracity Gawps At Stuff Comment Count

Brian September 5th, 2012 at 12:02 PM

[Programming note: UFR is coming today, but later than usual, say 4 or 5. For some reason I'm having trouble summoning the willpower to slog through all of it.]


Sponsor note. You may be driving in for the Air Force game and wondering where you will park. It hangs over you like a great dark cloud: where will my friends be? Will I have to walk through miles of jungle to get to them? Where did all this jungle come from anyway?

Well, skip that bit. Park 'n' Party solves those issues by organizing gameday parking. You can park next to your buddies, no intervening jungle. You can reserve a space just where you want it. You can do all of these things. Bonuses this year:

Air Force parking awaits you. Soon they will debut a 2.0 website. Soon.

Holgo. I know they hate our guts and went all ex-girlfriend on us when Rich Rodriguez left, but I can't help but want West Virginia to tear the Big 12 up. They're weird, passionate, isolated from all recruiting hotbeds that are not Pittsburgh, they've got a history of putting up video-game numbers, and their coach says stuff like this:

I don't think it would go well if we hired that guy (learning: I has it), but I'll admire them from afar.

I am not sure you are up on recent events. Air Force coach Troy Calhoun on Michigan:

"There are a handful of programs in college football that are guaranteed at least 10 victories every season," Calhoun said, "Michigan is one of them. They clearly are the favorite to win the Big Ten Conference."

I'm imagining a world where this is literally true. I'm so happy, in this world. I wear sunglasses all the time and high five anyone I come across. I make pancakes a lot just so I can put a whipped-cream smiley face on them. If my car breaks down, I exclaim "aw, shucks!"

I chew bubble-gum nonstop.


my watch says it is STAB O'CLOCK

How did this not end in homicide? Serious question:

The misery wasn't over for some fans of the No.8-ranked Michigan Wolverines on Saturday night at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington when their team took a 41-14 pounding at the hands of then-No. 2 Alabama Crimson Tide.

Many who planned to catch a taxi for the return trip to their hotels or other lodgings after the nationally televised football game were in for a long wait. Some complained of standing in line with dozens of other fans and waiting as long as two hours for a cab.

Beer + that game + two hour wait for cab == STABBY STABBY STAB STAB. The local news channel interviewing these folks says this lady is not mincing words!

Michigan fan Elizabeth Jahn minced no words. "If there's a system, and this is where the fans are supposed to be stationed and situated, that should be communicated to the cab companies," she said.

That lady minced those words, TV station. She took those words and made them tiny and even by chopping. If she was not mincing words she would have said "I STAB YOUUUUUUU."

Alphabetical. Spencer kicks it off by talking about how Alabama owned Michigan. At least we're not alone:

Again, it is not a Big Ten thing: disabuse yourself of that notion immediately, Michigan fan. The last thing we want you feeling is special, because what happened to you on Saturday night in Dallas was not special. Slightly different than in past years? Perhaps: Doug Nussmeier's offense appears to be a bit more happy to turn A.J. McCarron loose, particularly in early innings, and the defense didn't pressure so much as constrict Michigan into tiny, useless spaces turning Denard Robinson into a doomed sub captain. Depth charges: Alabama has them

Unfortunately, his assertion that no one died does not account for the Countess injury. Sad face.

Bubble popping? I've muttered about how college football fans are getting close to the breaking point for a while now, and Pat Forde has just documented an opening weekend that was an attendance bust all around. I was shocked at more than one of these factoids:

There was exactly one announced capacity crowd in eight Southeastern Conference home openers. Before the Labor Day Georgia Tech-Virginia Tech game, six out of seven Atlantic Coast Conference schools had smaller crowds than their openers last year – some of them much smaller. Attendance was down at six out of eight Big 12 home openers from 2011. Five out of eight Pac-12 schools had smaller crowds as well, and Oregon's 13-year sellout streak was in jeopardy until game day.

I saw the Florida-BGSU game and was shocked at a corner of the endzone in the upper deck that was all but empty. Even the bluebloods are reaching their limit.

Michigan doesn't seem to have similar problems except when it comes to getting the students to show up on time, but they should benefit from this trend. They may have already after snagging one-off home games with Oregon State and Colorado in the near future. Would those have happened ten years ago? Probably not. Increasing ticket prices and the ubiquity of television are pushing the economics of college football back  towards actual games between teams. Tomato cans aren't going away but we should see them gradually recede from their boring-ass apex. High five, epic ongoing recession!

Bubble expanding. Via Get The Picture, the Ed O'Bannon lawsuit that threatens to drain money from the NCAA and give it to the players whose images have been expropriated has decided to aim higher:

O’Bannon seeks a judge’s permission to expand the class action to include current D-I football and men’s basketball players. O’Bannon does not ask that current players be paid while in college. Instead, he wants a temporary trust set up for monies generated by the licensing and sale of their names, images and likenesses. Players could access those trusts at the completion of their collegiate careers.

The O'Bannon plan sends half(!) of broadcasting and a third of video game revenue to the players. Even partial success here would be seismic. I'm in favor, obviously.

Austin Hatch to 2014. Everyone in the world speculated that Austin Hatch would take another year of high school after his tragic plane crash, and now that's official. He's a 2014 recruit now.

Michigan is now at 13 for next year's team will have open spots if Hardaway or Trey Burke head for the NBA, which is why they're still after some 2013 guys. The most prominent is Reggie Cameron, a 2.0 version of Smotrycz hopefully without the existential depression.

As for Hatch, if he doesn't recover to the point where he can play, Michigan will still honor his scholarship. Presumably they would give him a medical; I'm guessing in this situation the NCAA would provide whatever waivers would be necessary lickety-split.

!?!?!?!? Touch the Banner interviews JB Fitzgerald, and he says this!

(3.)  If you had to choose, who was your favorite coach at Michigan, including position coaches?

"So many great coaches I had the privilege of learning from, which I expected going into a program like Michigan. Two coaches really stand out.  First, Greg Robinson - truly a class act and the depth of football knowledge that I was able to gain from him is hard to put a price on. And then of course Coach Hoke."


Air Force stuff. Via mgovideo:

Oosterbaan unretirement. MVictors scores an interview with Ben McCready, Bennie Oosterbaan's godson:

MVictors:  As one of the representatives of Bennie Oosterbaan family, did the athletic department reach out to you to ask if the family would be interested in participating in the Legends program?

McCready:  Dave Brandon contacted me last September to see what I thought of the Legends program.  I loved the idea.  He and asked if I could put him in touch with members of Bennie’s family. I was happy to put Dave in touch with Bennie’s surviving relatives (8 in all), most of whom Bennie and his wife Delmas were very close to throughout their lives.  Dave sent letters to all of them. Every member of the family responded to Dave that they loved and supported the Legends Program and the "unretiring" of Bennie’s jersey.

McCready wants Jordan Kovacs to wear 47, which nooooooooooooooooooo.

Seriously, though, as the guy who famously hauled in Benny Friedman's passes, I'd hope Oosterbaan's 47 goes to a wideout. 47 would be a lot more notable on a WR than a defensive player, and Michigan already has to throw Gerald Ford's #48 to someone other than a lineman due to modern-day number restrictions. The Wisterts' #11 should end up on the DL somewhere; Ron Kramer should obviously be given to a TE.

Etc.: Quality diary featuring Hall and Oates. A dinged Rex Burkhead does not need surgery. He may be out a bit but should be fine by the time Michigan hits Lincoln. Texas A&M is going to get pwned. This Week in "John L Smith must stay forever": prank-calls reporter at presser. Comprehensive M blogosphere Alabama react collection. To his credit, Dantonio says MSU players need to shut up.



September 5th, 2012 at 12:26 PM ^

It wasn't Texas A&M or any of their fans who put up that billboard (A&M's already released a statement). It's looking like it was a Baylor fan who wanted to get revenge for the billboard A&M fans put up in Waco.


September 5th, 2012 at 12:34 PM ^

I'm with you on hoping WVA tears up the Big 12.  My wife is from West Virginia and my mother-in-law went to WVA and still lives there.  It's a beautiful state and they love their Mountaineers. 

Every year I pick a non-Michigan school to kinda-sorta "follow" through the season.  This year for me it's WVA.  I want to see how that goes, and if there are any early indicators of how well they'll do in the Big 12 not just this year, but for the next five or so years.


September 5th, 2012 at 12:40 PM ^

It was a total mess outside the stadium. Imagine if the Big house was where it is, with nothing but parking lots and strip malls for miles, and everyone stayed in Detroit for games, that's the set up for the Cowboys games. I think very few people cab to cowboy games in general, so it's just not set up for it. They should think about a taxi station for neutral site games where many people didn't drive in.

That being said, it's a total mess of an area/streets/parking lots. I won't be going back any time soon.  


September 5th, 2012 at 12:51 PM ^

I don't know about other fans, but I just walked about 10 minutes after the game and found a huge line of cabs waiting to pick people up. They were just off to a side street, all trying to get to people at the stadium. We hopped in one and were on our way within 15 minutes of leaving the stadium. No headache at all (aside from the hangover that I knew I was going to have, that is).


September 5th, 2012 at 2:04 PM ^

I did the same, and then proceeded to drink regrettable amounts of bourbon in uptown.  Also, did anyone else notice there was a comic/fantasy-type convention going on in the city the same weekend?  When I went walking around downtown before the game, I saw lots of people in odd costumes, and at 2AM just before heading home I vaugely remember seeing Darth Vader and a contingent of stormtroopers walking down the street and wondering if I had lost my sanity.

matty blue

September 5th, 2012 at 1:18 PM ^

au contraire, my friend.  the day is coming where paying $75 face value (over $90 via stubhub) for a borderline bcs program like air force or a crappy directional / d2 / whatever team will.  not.  stand:  particularly when i have an hd television and  the ability to listen to the radio instead of espn.

there are very few things that i am sure of here in this brave new world of college football.  that's one of them.


September 5th, 2012 at 1:37 PM ^

Regarding the J.B. Fitzgerald comment about Greg Robinson ... I saw that as well when scanning "Touch the Banner" this morning.

I've never met Greg Robinson, but I have no reason to doubt Fitzgerald's assessment of Robinson as a "class act."  And he probably does have considerable football knowledge, as anyone qualified to be a defensive coordinator in the NFL must possess.

I've read more than a few comments here and elsewhere about how being forced to run the 3-3-5 was the key reason for the lack of defensive success.  What I don't know is whether that explains the totality of the defensive issues Michigan had, or just some.

I've often wondered if Greg Robinson was simply not well-suited for the college coaching role.  He seemed to go from the NFL to Texas, where the Longhorns went 11-1, but in that case Robinson was co-DC with Akina.  His stint at Syracuse was a disaster, and his appearance at Michigan was also not good.

So I'm left to wonder -- from a truly objective point of view (which is difficult), was Robinson a skilled defensive coordinator in bad-fit situations, or overrated in terms of defensive knowledge and it showed at Syracuse and Michigan?

(Did you notice I didn't mention former head coaches once?  Pot remains unstirred.)


September 5th, 2012 at 2:17 PM ^


I love me some Borges ... I think he's a damn smart OC and I get a freakin' hoot out of his press conferences.

Speaking of which -- did you notice the part in the most recent presser where Borges was trying to make a point about the 2011 Oregon's season after the loss to LSU to open?  Borges asked, "And how did they do?"  Someone in the audience thought that meant 'against LSU.'  Borges had this classic 'You mean I have to explain this?' look on his face ... "No.  After the game."  He said.  I laughed out loud.


September 5th, 2012 at 2:44 PM ^

I'm guess that the PSU number might be a high water mark in the months and years to come.  Imagine what the Big House would be like if immediately after the Toledo game in 2008 somebody told you "and it's only going to get worse....a LOT worse....for the next four years and beyond."  The hard cores would keep coming but man you'd lose the peripheral fan base in a hurry.

I think they're going to fondly remember the Ohio game in the not to distant future as that game where we still almost sold out.....


September 5th, 2012 at 2:01 PM ^

Instead of a trust, which just makes college athletes pro athletes with an arbitrary delay on payment, why not force those proceeds to go to something which directly benefits current players but fits under the auspices of a collegiate sporting organization.  I'd be happy to see free health insurance for all collegiate athletes (or at least coverage for all sport-related injuries/therapy); a residual scholarship fund (all athletes who play at least two years of a varsity sport can get scholarships to finish there degree if they leave for the pros, get cut, or become medically unable to play); or fund a standardized stipend program so the Indiana Tech's of the world have less reason to complain.  I also would support a program giving free laptops/ipads to all college athletes as A:) they are useful education tools and B:) certain athletes would be less inclined to steal them...


September 5th, 2012 at 2:55 PM ^

Here is the definition of factoid from dictionary.com:

1. an insignificant or trivial fact.

2.something fictitious or unsubstantiated that is presented as fact,  devised especially to gain publicity and accepted because of constant repetition.

So a factoid (definition 1) is true, but a factoid (definition 2) may or may not be true.  It seems perfectly acceptable to use the word as it was used here.



September 5th, 2012 at 3:13 PM ^

The original definition of "factoid" was an unsubstantiated statement. People mis-used the term so much, however, that it has also come to mean definition 1. Given this history, I have to disagree with adopting definition 1 at all. One can add "irregardless" to the dictionary because people use the term, but it's still wrong in my (narrow) mind.


September 5th, 2012 at 3:38 PM ^

I am reluctant to demand that people stick to the "original definition" of a word that did not even exist until after I started school.  The word had not even existed 10 years before it acquired definition #1, and most people heard it the first time as definition #1, not definition #2.

I'm (obviously) no prescriptivist, but I'm with you on "irregardless."  There is a perfectly good word ("regardless") that people should be using instead.

I suppose none of this has anything to do with Michigan sports, though...


September 5th, 2012 at 3:46 PM ^

I would say that there's a perfectly good word for definition 1, and that would be "trivia". I can't think of a common word that works for definition 2 quite as well. I should point out, however, that I understand that language does shift and change with time. Nonetheless, definition 2 seems perfectly matched to the word and definition 1 simply adds confusion, so the addition of a second meaning is one that I regret. Besides, all of this is keeping me from having to replay the Alabama game in my mind.


September 5th, 2012 at 4:29 PM ^

Maybe Gardner is going to recieve 47. He is primarily a reciever (for this year), and that would explain why he has had to keep quiet about his number change to 12.


September 5th, 2012 at 5:34 PM ^

I can't accept Fitzgerald calling GERG his favorite coach.  I'm sticking to the belief that he either A. accidentally said Robinson instead of Mattison, or B. just trolled TTB and MGoblog hard.


September 5th, 2012 at 5:56 PM ^

Every time I hear about this Ed O'Bannon ordeal, it's of course about this lawsuit, I am always shocked to hear it is still in process and to be ongoing.  For what it's worth, I think I'm on his side as well.

Contrary to popular belief, GERG knows much about the defensive side of football.  It sure as hell didn't show in Ann Arbor for 2 years, but the point remains.  He possesses (God that's a lot of S's) info. that if the right mind inquired, he would be able to share a vast wealth of info..  His "teaching methods" may not have succeeded on the macro level, but I think if one were to go under his wing, one could learn valuable lessons about playing defense.