Unverified Voracity Puts It Through

Submitted by Brian on July 26th, 2013 at 3:46 PM

The ghost of Lloyd Carr haunts everything. Oh yes.

Life advice, or just Lloyd Carr musing darkly on a life he perceives as a slate-gray expanse of clouds? Does Lloyd Carr show up at orientation, pick a bright-eyed pre-med student, and tell them "this doesn't make you an adult"? I hope so. It would be very Michigan if one of their former coaches became the Dark Oracle Of Ann Arbor.

Nine minutes of game winning field goals. Right here:

Glenn Robinson III throwing various things down. Also right here:

Kate. I wish you to see this picture. I think the basketball team has gotten their Final Four rings.


A handsome man, now handsomer.

Piling on Emmert. Mark Emmert is getting hammered from all sides these days, with the latest hits a unified front from the Big 5 conferences against the NCAA status quo and an extensive OTL article detailing the chaos inside the organization:

One source said that at least one major conference has gone so far as to send a directive to its representative on the NCAA Executive Committee -- which, among other duties, hires and fires the association's president -- to make it "crystal clear that they were not at all happy with the direction of the entire enterprise under Emmert."

He picked up the dread vote of confidence a while ago.

Meanwhile, with an obviously coordinated assault on the current state of the NCAA launched by the commissioners of the top five conferences, change is coming, and soon. Emmert himself is joining the chorus:

Emmert said he expects significant changes to how the NCAA operates to be adopted within the next year.

At issue is the ability of the richest athletic programs --- which attract the massive television rights fees --- to set policy without the smaller D-I programs stopping them because of financial concerns.

“There’s one thing that virtually everybody in Division I has in common right now, and that is they don’t like the governance model,” Emmert said. “Now, there’s not agreement on what the new model should be. But there’s very little support for continuing things in the governing process the way they are today.”

Emmert actually may have been at the forefront of this, but don't tell anyone that. He may gone about everything in the most ham-handed way possible, but given what he's been trying to do he's likely on board with Division Zero or whatever.

I am too, of course. The gap between programs that are net spenders and those that have to figure out what to do with their buckets of money is untenable, and the players should get some more of the money coming in. If this is the way to do it, great:

Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany said Wednesday he wants lifetime scholarships for athletes to finish their educations and a non-athletic year for “at-risk” students followed by four years of eligibility.

“There’s no one talking about this being some incremental change,” Emmert said. “I think there’s an interest in some pretty fundamental change in the way decisions are made, both to accomodate those (financial) differences but also to deal with concerns people have about representation ... in the policy debates.”

Etc.: Ace points out that OSU has the best record against the spread in conference games over the past ten years, nationally. Michigan is barely below .500. Baseball brings in 16 kids, including the co-Mr. Baseballs in the state. They are 11 guys over their roster limit, though. That's just how baseball works, I guess?

Charlie Weis has an epiphany. Jordan Kovacs gets hazed. The randomness of turnovers is pretty much why Darrell Hazell got to Purdue. Bill Connolly previews State. Think he's way underrating LeVeon Bell and thus overrating MSU's line, FWIW. Connolly also does Iowa. Targeting is going to be a fiasco.



July 26th, 2013 at 4:08 PM ^

I completely agree with your critique of the Connelly piece on MSU.  He said, 'When your most impressive talent is your ability to take a beating, you can probably be replaced" about LeVeon Bell.  He followed that up by calling their running back stable "potentially deep" despite the fact that they had to move a RS frosh LB over to RB for the spring game and he was the best one despite not being any good. 

Bell's most impressive talent was not his ability to take a beating, it was his ability to take a beating and still rack up a ton of yards even though he didn't have a back up and every opponent knew he was getting the ball. 

This is my big problem with people who put so much weight on number of returning starters, because it assumes that every starter is equally important and that the gap between first and second string is the same everywhere.  Both are false.  LeVeon Bell carried MSU last year, and I think they're in a world of hurt without him.  They will really have to rely on their passing game if you they want points, which, LOL.


July 26th, 2013 at 4:32 PM ^

Well - I agree Dion Sims is another loss that hurts, both because he was good and because they didn't have any other TEs who could catch a ball, but he was nowhere near Bell in terms of production.  He was third on the team in catches and yards (on a team that had a poor passing game) and his only two TDs came against EMU and CMU. 

I do agree that he's a big loss because he was a huge TE who could block and catch and they don't have anyone else who can do that, which certainly takes away a dimension.  We should just play nickel the entire time against them and I bet we'd be fine.

MI Expat NY

July 26th, 2013 at 4:45 PM ^

I always felt that Sims was dispraportinately involved in their successful drives.  He, like the MSU offense in general, wouldn't do anything for most of the day, and then when they finally got a couple drives going in the second half, Sims would be heavily involved.  I think he's a huge loss for their offense, even if the stats don't make it seem that way.  


July 26th, 2013 at 4:53 PM ^

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying he won't be a big loss, I was just comparing it to the Bell loss which will be much, much bigger.  Bell touched the ball maybe 35 times a game and Sims touched the ball probably 5. 

But I agree that his touches were usually at important times, and he did lead the team in yards per reception (as a TE, weird) when you take out the guys who only caught like 3 passes and one was a long one. 

Taking a look at MSU's stats from last year, they only had 8 guys catch 5 or more passes.  Two of them were the departed RBs (Bell and Caper), one was Sims and one was Lawrence Thomas who is now on defense.  They don't have a ton of guys who can catch the ball.


July 26th, 2013 at 5:21 PM ^

I think MSU's staff have earned our respect and faith in terms of finding RB talent.  This year they're bringing in 3 freshman.  No proven talent but many options. The spring game doesn't matter - it would be a shock if Bullogh is actually the leading ball carrier.

Bell seemed like a really good college player, but the the conclusion from all the analytics people is that his performance won't translate to the next level.  That doesn't matter for our purposes, but it hints that he really won't be missed as much as one might assume. 

The MSU offense was very one-dimensional last year.  I'd expect them to improve dramatically despite losing their 2 most valuable weapons.  Experience and consistency matters - just look at Toussaint in '11 vs '12.  If you think MSU's run game is going to collapse this year, you're going to be dissappointed.


July 26th, 2013 at 4:44 PM ^

That "non-athletic" year seems like a very solid idea, as it gives athletes a year to adjust to and focus on college academics, but I wonder how exactly "at-risk" would be defined. That seems like it could be and should be a delicate process.


July 26th, 2013 at 8:28 PM ^

It may not sound appealing, but most likely it would help with academic related attrition, which has to be appealing for the schools, and should be appealing for the athletes because it probably gives them a better chance of staying on the team for the long term.

R Kelly

July 26th, 2013 at 8:36 PM ^

Perhaps it could be a positive thing, without more details it's too early for me to form an educated opinion.  I guess right now it just strikes me as something that will distract from the main problem that is driving NCAA reform.  I like the lifetime scholarship idea though, I think that there are a lot of players who would take advantage of that.

Ron Utah

July 26th, 2013 at 5:32 PM ^

Connelly's MSU preview has some glaring holes.  Bell's production is vastly underrated, and I think he's a bit too harsh on a passing game that will improve substantially if ANYONE can catch the ball.

That said, I agree with his conclusion: MSU is likely an 8-9 win team.

double blue

July 26th, 2013 at 8:37 PM ^

imo-   the baseball coach is very saban like.  he has tried very hard to get rid of current players

he belongs in the sec.  we will win, but we won't win the michigan way.

Doctor Wolverine

July 27th, 2013 at 8:37 AM ^

Interesting. I don't follow baseball much outside of wins and loses. What has he done to get rid of current players? Bringing in 16 kids of course seems like a lot, but I don't know enough to know if that is unique or if there is shady business. I'd be curious to hear some stats and facts before grabbing my pitchfork.

Spontaneous Co…

July 27th, 2013 at 9:50 AM ^

The accusation levied above re: baseball is disturbing to me. I know nothing about how Bakich is handling this but I'd really like to know more. Does anyone have an insider's knowledge about what is happening with the seemingly untenable numbers there?

I'd much rather Bakich take a few years and naturally cycle through the players who have been recruited by the previous regime to represent the University, even if it sets us back 2-3 years.

double blue

July 28th, 2013 at 11:36 AM ^

He has told some players that they could come back but they would basically be team managers-  hint hint why don't you transfer... they don't because they actually came to michigan for an education as well.  Also heard he told them to leave school books home on a road trip...

Not saying that the players are bad people or that eventual he won't get on track with his own players and be more of what we expect, but the transition is brutal.  The school book issue is more concerning and I am not sure if it was once or constant, but I know he got upset when he saw some players studying on a trip in the hotel lobby.

We will see.