Unverified Voracity Has Odd Advocates

Submitted by Brian on February 19th, 2015 at 12:28 PM

Do you think we should take both? So Bryce Petty and Jameis Winston stopped by Schembechler yesterday to hang with Mr. Harbaugh.

This is good publicity, and then they brainwash both of 'em to say things that went beyond kind boilerplate into angry-phone-call-from-Jimbo territory. Winston:

"These guys don't know how blessed they are to have this kind of facility. I mean, Florida State, we're a very prestigious school, we have nice stuff, but we don't have this. I'm sorry, I love Florida State. Go 'Noles till the day I die, but they're so much [more] advanced than us."


"This is bar none the best one that I've seen. We've got great ones in Waco, you know I love what we had at Baylor, and so it's cool to kind of see other places, and this is definitely by far one of the best I've seen."

Winston again:

"It was a blessing to meet a guy like that. It was an honor to meet him. All of his accomplishments, and the type of coach that he is, I wish I could have played for him."

Petty again:

"If there's anybody that you want to play for as a player, it's a coach like him. Just a fan, energetic guy, passionate about football. From the second he came over here he was sizing up Jameis and wanted to see his grip. He's just a quarterback. And that's the coolest part about playing the position and being coached by somebody that's been there and done that."

Ndamukong Suh showed up today, because why not.

Can't hurt recruiting, that. Unless people think those pants are mandatory.

Doing what needs to be done. Note that this kind of thing did not happen under Hoke, who didn't have twitter at all. Harbaugh's firing off shade tweets at OSU and putting his mug on the internet with NFL stars, to wide publicity.

Michigan is—ugh no way around it—Leveraging Social Media much better than they did under the previous regime, during which they rarely did anything anyone would pay attention. Brandon (or rather his ghost-tweeter) tended to send out the kind of #hashtag tweets that make you sound like a broken robot. Hoke was invisible, and nothing that was interesting enough to pass around was constructed. The Winston/Petty stuff had some viral quality to it. That serves the program well.

Good to see goals other than incremental revenue being advanced these days.

Iggy Pop's biggest musical influence. Via MVictors comes this amazing story about Iggy Pop confusing some guy who met him in a bar:

“You’re Iggy Pop, man.  I love your stuff.  I’m from Michigan too,” I rambled on, sounding as moronic as the Pop is accused of being by some of his critics.

Iggy pointed to my t-shirt with the word Michigan splayed across my chest.  “Meeschigan,” he said, holding his right arm in front of his slight chest in a 90-degree angle.  “Meeschigan.”

After a minute or so of gushing and trying to open up a conversation with the man who’s music, with the Stooges anyway, was the soundtrack to much of my late adolescence and early adulthood, all I could get out of the guy was “Meeschigan.”  As I turned to go back to the boys, I decided Iggy was either too burned out by the adulation of the years and hero worshiping kids like me or the critics were right.  He was so sort of junkie savant.  Either way, I was utterly confused by our meeting. …

Half an hour later, AMC had gone through a series of ballads that failed to alter the weird, contained rage from the mosh pit.  I felt a tug at my shirt and turned around.  I looked down right at Iggy Pop.

“Meeschigan,” he said, his arm cocked at that 90-degree angle.

“Meeschigan,” I answered him, my arm at the same angle.  He turned and walked out with his Ginger look alike on his arm.

Iggy Pop, spreading the Ufer gospel wherever he goes. Confusingly. Demanding that people imbibe the spirit of Ufer before departing with his girlfriend. Following them around.

Adding to the weird. According to a podcast interview with licensed twitter troll Tim Kawakami, Jim Harbaugh's favorite restaurant ever is…

The best restaurant he's ever been to: "Cracker Barrel ... you can't beat the bacon."

Harbaugh then put his twitter where his mouth is.

FWIW, my wife used to work at Cracker Barrel in high school. When I told her this, she expelled a sad, hurt sigh. The kind of sigh you expel when someone has told you something horrible. "Cracker Barrel isn't supposed to be anyone's favorite restaurant," she relates, "but if your main priority is getting out of the restaurant as fast as possible, Cracker Barrel is great at that."

I think we have found a reason.

(Also they make all their stuff from scratch instead of taking it off the SYSCO truck, so there's that.)

Miss you big guy XOXO. Charlie Weis is taking the slow boat to Shoney's:

For the first time since 1978, Weis will spend a football offseason as a bystander and not a coach. And it might very well be for good.

“I think it’s highly doubtful that I will ever coach again,” said the 58-year-old former Notre Dame head coach whose five-year regime in South Bend, punctuated by extremes, launched 10 seasons ago.

"…because I will still be paid to coach until the sun engulfs the earth and would rather follow Bon Jovi around than deal with people who don't understand my schematic genius."

Weis was a bad football coach and a good enemy, and for that I thank him.

(By the way, never go to Shoney's. Never ever.)

The ineligibility gambit. This will never happen but hopefully the NCAA folk pushing it know that and are trying to leverage the NBA:

7. Address the “one and done” phenomenon in men's basketball. If the National Basketball Association and its Players Association are unable to agree on raising the age limit for players, consider restoring the freshman ineligibility rule in men's basketball.

In today's lawsuit-rich environment that would be the equivalent of slapping a "SUE ME" sign on your own back, but anything that fixes one and done is a good idea. Increasing the age limit is the wrong direction, but anything is better than the current system.

Normally I would believe that this is just a leverage play but you never know with the NCAA. Bob Bowlsby, the Big 12 commisioner, makes a somewhat self-contradictory case for it:

Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby said there is “almost a uniform acknowledgment that there's kids in college that don't have any interest in an education and don't have the proper education to take advantage of an education.” Bowlsby said freshman ineligibility would have a “profoundly positive effect” on football and men's basketball by easing the transition from high school without the distractions of competition.

“I think there's a growing interest in a robust debate, and I think we ought to drag it to the ground and consider it any way we can,” Bowlsby said. “I think it is the one change that could make an absolutely dramatic difference in college athletics.”

Kids who don't have interest in education aren't going to find it because they can't play. I don't think that helps much of anything. Maybe it sends more Mudiay types overseas as they cool their heels. It may help the guys who are behind educationally, but how much when they're participating in all the team activities anyway? They don't have more time. They will be prepped to play just as much as any freshman.

It's impractical for a ton of reasons and won't happen, but go ahead rattle that sword just in case you knock a concession loose. The NBA draft is the worst system out there. The NHL or MLB models would be much preferable.

Des updated. Wolverine Historian has released a revised Desmond Howard tribute video. Up to 20 minutes(!).

Etc.: Lax getting good? Well done, gymnastics. Petty-Winston IM building faceoff! Don't expect Derrick Walton back soon. Maize and Blue Nation advocates blue versus red in The Game. I'm on board.



February 19th, 2015 at 1:12 PM ^

I dont know why but that Iggy Pop story reminded me of a Bill Murray story I just heard.  Apparently he likes to screw with random strangers, photo bomb weddings and do other stuff just to amuse himself.  So recently Murray walked into a Burger King of all places and saw a guy eating alone.  Without ordering a thing or saying a word Murray sat down at his table and start eating the guys french fries.  After he got over the shock of some strange old guy eating his food he realized who it was.  

When he did Murray stood up and said "they'll never believe you" and walked out.


February 19th, 2015 at 1:19 PM ^

That breakfast buffet was my joy as a child. I would eat till I was sick.

Then I reached the age of 11 and wanted to die afterward and that's the last time I've been to a Shoney's


February 19th, 2015 at 1:26 PM ^

I have a hard time with the "one-and-done" student-athletes, especially in basketball, when there's obviously a viable professional alternative to the NCAA. If you're talented enough, why can't you just make that leap from HS to the NBA without diluting a university's diploma? LeBron, Kobe, KG, etc. did it; or were they all a year ahead of their classmates? If you're not big or strong enough yet for the NBA, can't a team sign you to its D-League affiliate, where you can make about as much in salary as any school would give you in grant and aid?

My sense is if any blue-chip athlete chose an NBA affiliate's D-League team over the NCAA, that guy could probably negotiate a pretty good contract that would guarantee top-10 draft pick bucks if his play justified it.

Football, being a contact sport, is inherently different. I accept that those athletes need time to grow, and there's not a truly viable secondary path to professional football outside of college. But basketball, hockey, baseball...they all have viable farm, secondary and tertiary leagues for young athletes to come up through, and get paid about as much as a college scholarship is worth to do it.

It should be: if you want an education, go to college; and if you don't, don't. But my sense is putting any ink to paper on the subject - in either the NCAA or NBA rules and regulations handbook - would spell lost money and headaches for both.

Increase the age limit, and a lottery team potentially loses out on LeBron. Decrease the age limit, and the NCAA loses the talent pool that glues everyone to March Madness. Plus, with more young talent demanding contracts over scholarships, NBA teams would have to offer a lot more of them, and accept a lot more risk, just to sign (and keep) their next franchise player.



February 19th, 2015 at 1:39 PM ^

There's got to be an angle. Young studs have HS and AAU to get their talent noticed; and if they sign with an NBA affiliate, they're already in the door.

Keep playing hard and your talent will certainly take you to your goal in the NBA. Absent considering a player's ego or desire to actually be a One-and-Done, that's a quid pro quo.

So what does the NCAA truly have that a foot already in the door doesn't? My sense is it can't just be an opportunity for hollow egos. If all One-and-Dones were signed to D-League instead of the NBA, those games would certainly be competitive, and NBA teams could assess talent on their own courts. They could quickly see if a blue chip is a system player. They could make the right trades early on, even possibly guarantee a franchise player that fits the team agenda.

Mr Miggle

February 19th, 2015 at 2:51 PM ^

Their max salary is $25K. If NBA teams could circumvent the draft and sign top prospects to their D-league teams, they would already do that. 

The other issue with one and dones is that many more think that's the road they'll take than actually can or do. Is it better for them to learn that's not going to happen in college or in the D-league? Whle college basketball would arguably be better off without the one and dones, the players are better off with that option.


February 20th, 2015 at 4:47 PM ^

So is anyone best served by restricting D-League salaries to $25K, other than frugal NBA owners? I appreciate your explanation, but it begs the question; why not just bump D-League salaries to match the financial equivalent of a university scholarship over four years? Is it really a question of whether they simply don't have to?

In a certain light, one might expect the NBA to view the NCAA as a trust deserving to be busted apart.

POINT: The NCAA essentially owns the sole means of producing talent, and exclusive rights to the product in its raw and quasi-professionalized forms. There's an ongoing lawsuit all but proving that NCAA basketball players are indeed "professional", and you arguably have the NCAA locking these players down without due compensation; meanwhile making millions hand over fist! 

COUNTERPOINT: But NBA teams know they don't have to spend any money to assess an 18 year old's talent, and Kobe, LeBron and Kevin come around only so often. To the NBA, the NCAA's season and tournament is an exhibition; a glorified try-out.

...OK, but that line of thinking literally leaves BILLIONS of dollars on the table in broadcast rights! In April 2010, the NCAA inked a deal with CBS that made the network its exclusive March Madness outlet. The contract lasts for 14 years and is worth a whopping $10.8 billion. This contract alone is projected to generate $771 million per year for the NCAA. 

As the NBA, you just give that money to the NCAA by ignoring its talent? Seems stupid to me. 

Meanwhile, we're learning that NBA assessments can be pretty much locked up after one year of  a blue-chip's play in the NCAA, which could just as easily be assessed in an NBA D-League. And one might suspect the same fans who follow AAU and HS recruiting sites as college fans would just as enthusiastically follow their favorite NBA team's recruiting sites. So that makes me wonder, isn't that a honeyhole worth dipping the NBA's hand into?

Why not have TWO Drafts, an AAU Draft and an NCAA Draft? Make the AAU what it's already geared to be: a place where young talent can be brokered into contracts with professional teams, without the constraint of restricting players from talking to agents. The NCAA can then just be what the law is recognizing it is, a quasi-professional association where players are in fact professionally compensated with scholarships and an opportunity to double-major in Sports, before being ushered towards the expectation of a higher payday through the NCAA Draft (in the same fashion that a college degree all but assures its holder a higher payday in any profession).

Briefly, if my goal is the NBA and not an education, I'm taking a hard look at any alternative the NBA provides to get my foot in the door. A competitive D-League contract would provide the opportunity to be in the gym with my potential employer every day; while a scholarship requires me to be on a college campus, just hoping to get a start in a televised game.

Assuming the NCAA is eventually outed as a professional athletics/marketing association, any athlete initially choosing the D-League route can still theoretically accept a college scholarship/contract, so long as the player meets age restrictions.

As a result, (i) universities would only provide scholarships to student-athletes intent on finishing their degrees, (ii) athletes who want to make the NBA leap early have an opportunity and forum to do, with a demand and viewership for their talent, and (iii) neither choice - NBA or NCAA - would operate to nullify a fall back into the other, insofar as talent and conditions merit.


February 19th, 2015 at 1:26 PM ^

So if this had been Hoke or Brandon and Hoke publishing these tweets would they have recieved the same warm reception?  Or would there have been questions because of Suh's history of dirty play and Winston's list of issues as well?  I know what would have been said here had they stopped off in Columbus and the same thing happend, but that is understood, #RIVALRY.  I just think the old regime would have gotten blasted a bit, especially for Winston, perhaps more than Suh.   


February 19th, 2015 at 1:35 PM ^

So if Iggy's arm is at a 90 degree angle to his chest.....that looks more like a uhhhh.....certain 30's-era German salute.    Is that dude sure Iggy wasn't mocking him and Meeeshigan?  Iggy doesn't seem like the kind of guy who'd really approve of the Michigan Athletic Industrial Complex and might have just been messing with this guy?




February 19th, 2015 at 1:46 PM ^

Iggy and the Stooges were originally an Ann Arbor band. In fact, they and MC5 once shared a house in the Hill and Lincoln area.

No wonder Iggy knew "Meeshigan."

I had kind of a nodding acquaintance with them because I was in bands then. But I was also a frat boy living nearby. Our house had some incredibly stupid traditions, one of which was that the older guys would come and "kidnap" the sophomores who lived in the house, take a hose and spray water on them, and then pour red brick dust clay on this bunch of wet, naked guys. I think I forgot to mention that the process involved being stripped.

This exhibition would of course take place in winter on the front lawn of the house. Wet, red, naked guys running around outside in the dead of winter. Let's gently refer to this as kind of bizarre, but also true.

The day after this happened to my group, I was approached by one of the guys in the Stooges. Evidently they'd dropped acid that night, looked out their window to observe what was going on, and couldn't believe their eyes.

There was apparently some discussion about whether this was a group hallicination, or an actual event, and no one quite understood what they were seeing. And they wanted to know if it happened.

1969 was kind of that way. Meeshigan.


February 19th, 2015 at 1:47 PM ^

is a thing, but not the way Brandon/Lochdogg did it.  It needs to be organic and interesting.  Simpy throwing in some hashtags and mediocre graphics aren't going to move the needle.  Interviews with high profile athletes gushing about MIchigan and our head coach being goofy on twitter works much better.

Crisler 71

February 19th, 2015 at 1:55 PM ^

While I would love to see Red v. Blue I am not sure it is within the NCAA rules even now.  The rule says that an exception to the white jersey rule can be made if the two teams agree and there is still a light / dark contrast.  USC & UCLA have this contrast, I am not sure M / OSU would. 

However, the B1G has shown a willingness to bend the rules before.  The words on the backs of the NW players (Freedom, Honor, etc.) were not striclty legal at all, and I have seen lots of examples of the "contrasting numbers" rule being violated.

If they did it I would like to see OSU wear their "wide stripe" helmet and Addidas make a Michigan helmet like they made ones for TAMU last year.  The ones where they looked like leather helmets with stitches.

Wolverine In Exile

February 19th, 2015 at 1:55 PM ^

with a slight tweak (for the other sports too). All HS players are eligible and if a team drafts you, you can either sign with them immediately or wait 2-3 years. HOWEVER, the pro team that drafts you then becomes responsible for paying your cost of attendance in order to keep your draft rights. If they don't like the school you chose or you're not developing as they'd hope, then they can drop the financial assistance and the school then has to guarantee the remainder of your eligibility. Basicaly, the pro team gets your draft rights and if you're good enough right away, there's no barrier to you playing right away (Kobe, Garnett, LeBron, etc). If the pro team has a logjam at your position for 1-2 years, they can "stash you away" in college for a couple years (much like how the NHL used to use the European leagues). If you develop fast, you're eligible to play in 2 years in the pros at which point the proteam has sunk $50-100k in you (cheaper than a D-league deal), your college has benefitted from 2 years of activity, and you've had 2 years to build a "brand" for yourself. If you're a slow developing player, the proteam gets a mature player for the cost of $100-200k or is a sunk cost if they player doesn't develop at which point the player has a chance to prove his worth to someone else and the proteam is off the hook for way less than the cost of a Corleone Young contract.


February 19th, 2015 at 2:08 PM ^

Someone PLEEEEEEEASE photoshop a picture of UM/OSU so I can see what the Red vs. Blue would look like. It sounds amazing. Let's start a petition to the White House or something.


February 19th, 2015 at 9:44 PM ^

Part way through those highlights - once I got past all the nostalgia and tears for what has happened to my beloved Wolverines Football over the past decade or so - I thought of Denard - the speed and amazing athletic moves in traffic.  But the highlights just keep coming and coming.  I will always love me some Shoelace, but he didn't give us anything close to as many amazing moments.*

What a luxury Grbac has on some of those throws -- just find an open spot, behind the defense and out of anybody's reach: throw for that spot and there's a better than 50% chance that Howard is going to catch it.  I don't know how else to explain so many diving catches - Grbac had to be throwing anticipating the dive as part of the route.  Just amazing.

I will never ever, ever forget "The Catch" against Notre Dame.  And I really, really, really want to experience something like this again.


*Likely because he didn't get a chance to?

Chitown Kev

February 19th, 2015 at 2:31 PM ^

Jameis Winston IS an awfully gifted QB and one who is totally the type favored by Harbaugh (pinpoint passer, good mechanics, mobile but prefers to saty in the pocket).

First of all, the grades/test scores were probably not good enough for Michigan (and defintely not Stanford) but if they were...I have the feeling that a Coach Harbaugh wouldn't have allowed him to get away with even a quarter of the shit that he appears to have gotten away with.


Then again, maybe everything would have been the same. It is interesting to speculate, though.


February 19th, 2015 at 2:32 PM ^


Another main draw of the trip was the chance to learn from Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh, albeit off of the practice field because of NCAA regulations restricting how much time Harbaugh can spend with players on the field at this time of the year.

Is this true? They are no longer NCAA eligible, so why are there any NCAA rules about Harbaugh coaching them?


February 19th, 2015 at 5:19 PM ^

And who benefits.

In the cases of one-and-dones, the NBA is happy because they get a year to weed out some of the high schoolers who can't cut it in college, while still preserving the youth and potential they prize. The NCAA is ok because they get a year of these guys rather than not, although they'd rather have more. The players are mostly happy because they can get a college education and a showcase for their skills before moving on to their "inevitable" destiny in the NBA.

The trick is finding a stakeholder who has something to gain without getting sued in return. The NCAA has already been sued several times over issues like freshman eligibility, and is not on particularly solid ground as it is; even if they managed to drive freshman eligibility into dust, they wouldn't actually get what they want, which is more lucrative years of play from young talent. The NBA could raise the minimum age one year if they were persuaded that the gain of additional development and weeding was worth the loss of potential and the loss of marketable players and chance of getting sued again. The players don't have a vote other than a group veto.

Mostly I see this as just talk by the NCAA hoping the NBA throws them a bone.

Old Lax Wolve

February 20th, 2015 at 10:25 AM ^

Only 2-0 so far, but we won both handily against teams that were close games last year (both one goal wins) and losses in previous years.  We are getting better while those teams stayed the same.

Tomorrow will be another story when #2 Notre Dame comes to Ann Arbor (BTW, Michigan is in the “also receiving votes” section of the top-20 poll for the first time ever. We finished #39 last year and in the 50’s previously). While I harbor no illusions about beating ND (this year) I think we can keep it respectable if we work hard (ND didn’t look that great last week against Georgetown).

Still, in the back of my mind is the game last year when we took the #15 Cornell to overtime before losing 15-14. I attributed that game to (1) Cornell overlooking an obviously inferior team in a road game, and (2) Oosterbaan’s less-than-great lighting and really-close-to-the-field walls. If we can come anywhere even close to repeating that against ND it would shock the lacrosse world. If you’re around Ann Arbor you should check it out, should be a packed house.