Unverified Voracity Is Putting Hockey In Arizona Comment Count

Brian November 19th, 2014 at 11:13 AM

Does anyone ever check anything? No? Okay. This exists.

Michigan needs to have a twitter feed in which they ask everyone if this thing they're about to do is a bad idea.

Speaking of things that exist without being checked that should not exist. Oh man the takes coming out of the Free Press after Frank Clark's dismissal are super super hot:


The Free Press must have a logic puzzle as part of their hiring process. Anyone who figures it out fails.

This, by the way, this is a great example of the pointless moralizing I was talking about. Seidel doesn't give damn about whether Michigan officially dismissed Clark on Sunday or Monday, he's just complaining to show off how impressively ethical he is. Barry Petchesky just had an excellent piece on how the NFL is using Adrian Peterson to repair The Brand:

3. This is a pure PR play on the part of the NFL, and it's almost too cynical to be believed. The league had been reeling from widespread criticism of its eagerness to co-opt the legal process and its inability to sensitively or sensibly handle morality. Peterson—a black-and-white villain—was a blessing. Maybe a bad man, maybe a man who did bad things, he's a relatively uncomplicated figure, and the NFL was thrilled to have someone to position itself against. The NFL clambered over Peterson to regain the moral high ground it never actually deserved, and is using that platform to shout out, "We are strongly against the beating of children." This is the safest and most defensible position in the world. What we're seeing is the return of the soldiers-and-puppies-and-Pinktober NFL, barely months after the Ray Rice fiasco exposed that as a thin facade. There has been no meaningful change. The league is still beyond reproach, because it cares about the children.

Seidel roundly condemns domestic violence to create the appearance he's a rad dude; the only person served by his column is himself.

Fan appreciation day. At least they're trying. Michigan's announced a bunch of minor fan perks for the Maryland game, including some concession concessions and apparel discounts for season ticket holders. They're also allowing field access. That access is slated to start 30-45 minutes after a 3:30 game that looks likely to feature freezing rain—ain't nobody staying for that.

We've got photos of other stuff. We've been branching out our photos into non-revenue sports. Here's a SOON shot from volleyball's outing against Minnesota:


[Bill Rapai]

Rapai also shot a WBB game; Marc-Gregor Campredon shot men's and women's soccer.

As always, mgoblog photos are Creative Commons licensed so you can use them. Just credit the photographer and link back.

Exit Will Muschamp. Florida axed him yesterday, and man the parallels here are eerie: Muschamp had a weird, horseshoe-flavored 11-2 year (his second; Hoke's first) before seemingly excellent recruiting collapsed in a pile of offensive ineptitude too intense to be believed. QBs in Gainesville and Ann Arbor disintegrated into quivering interception machines before our eyes; the defenses generally stood tall despite extremely adverse conditions; both teams mutated football never-before-seen piles of suck, despair, and hilarity.

Today they had a press conference in which Muschamp handled himself ably and everyone swore up and down he was the best dude. Earlier this year Spencer and I had an IM conversation about swapping coaches, and it turns out that's beside the point: Muschamp and Hoke are the same dude.

Spencer eulogizes:

3. There is no limit to the variations of failure here. Muschamp was blown out at home on Homecoming by Mizzou, 42-13, and sniped by a late field goal, completing a 30-27 home collapse against LSU. Alabama could have scored 60 on the Gators, but got bored and politely declined the option in a 42-21 road humiliation. When Florida lined up for a late punt against South Carolina after the Gamecocks had already blocked a game-clinching field goal, the kick was blocked before the ball was ever snapped. Don't ever tell anyone you can't block a ball with your mind; Florida did it, and then handed it to South Carolina with a smile. The confidence in delivering losses was the only constant Florida had left, something it got down to some time after the worst loss in program history: a home defeat by Georgia Southern in 2013.

Did you forget that happened, the low point of lows for an entire era? He did that. Will Muschamp's signature loss of signature losses is him misspelling the word "fart" in spray paint across "The Birth of Venus."  It's an atrocity almost admirable in its accidental, perfect malice. For the record, I think Will would spell it "p-h-a-r-t," because that's the funniest possible misspelling of the word.

With reports that Dan Mullen won't be of interest, my main regret about Florida pulling the trigger early is that Spencer got the jump on the one-sentence summation of the last four years:

11. In conclusion: RIP, Big Dumb Will Muschamp Football. In the end, you were too dumb to live and too ugly to mourn.

May Spencer find his Christmas tree stocked with Air Raid coaches, and may Will Muschamp migrate northwards to be Jim Harbaugh's DC.

Now everything will be fixed forever. The NCAA has taken the first and most important step towards being an organization that creates good in this world:

Long national nightmare, etc.

Hockey stuff. I haven't said too much about the hockey team yet; I don't usually during football season because of time constraints and just the fact that I'm not that good at figuring out hockey even now and need some time to get my head around. I'm not much closer after Michigan's meh sweep of American International. Center Ice:

The problems started when the defensive pairings were changed again. The blueline predictably looked disjointed, pinching at the wrong times, getting caught out of position and allowing the Yellow Jackets to get countless odd man rushes on Zach Nagelvoort.

Michigan suffocated AIC by pressuring in the offensive zone for the majority of both games, but when the Yellow Jackets countered they easily found quality scoring chances. When the defense had their way on Saturday cutting down mistakes, Nagelvoort wasn't able to keep the puck out of the net and the Yellow Jackets were able to not just stay in the game, but put Michigan on the ropes early.

AIC is usually so bad that anyone within shouting distance of the tournament sees wins against them excised from their RPI because counting those games would actually lower it. These games were essentially exhibitions against a team much worse than the U18s, and Michigan duly dominated attack time and SOG.

I don't take much positive from it, though. On Friday AIC had three separate 3-on-1s and a half-dozen other odd-man rushes besides; on Saturday they played Michigan almost even through two periods. I'm at a loss to explain Michigan's play. They have piles of talent, certainly enough to scrape through if their back end was making moderate mistakes occasionally instead of enormous ones frequently. That's not the case, and then the offense has lacked incisiveness against anyone better than AIC since… since TJ Hensick left? It's been a long time since Michigan's had a guy like him.

So I don't know. Michigan is really behind the eight ball here, already, playing in a crappy conference with a 2-5 record in games that will actually matter when it's time to find tourney participants. Would Red hang on for that last year when Tech is 10-0(!) and headed for their best season since the 1980s, thus paving the way for Pearson to come back? I don't know, but that's what I'm thinking about now… not getting back to the tourney this year.

At least they're finally fixing the ice infrastructure? Yost's ice has been iffy for years.

Speaking of hockey. Arizona State(?!) announces they will add a D-I program. Like Penn State, they make the leap from ACHA power. ASU is a weird  program to make the leap; there are no West Coast programs. The three Colorado outfits are the only schools even vaguely close. Even so I'd guess the NCHC snaps them up. Arizona State brings a bigger athletic profile than most of their members.

This is one of the benefits of the Big Ten's formation, by the way. That reorganized the western programs into three conferences instead of two. After CHA folded, programs  that were considering hockey had a dubious future as an independent. Now there are spots for another dozen teams, as long as some of them are in the Big Ten.

Buffalo might be next, with Penn State benefactor and new Bills owner Terry Pegula potentially fronting the capital.

You used to know how to do this. Michigan scheduled a home hockey game for a football Saturday. That game is at 3:30. The hockey game is at 7:30. Remind me why I have season tickets again? Is it because I'm dumb? It feels like that's the reason.

Michigan never used to do this. Instead they would have the occasional Sunday matinee. New athletic director please save us. And stop running the ARE YOU FAN ENOUGH commercial for the hockey game the previous athletic director yanked out of our season ticket packages.

Etc.: Ray Taylor's baby has impeccable timing. Approximately 3k unsold seats for Maryland. Michigan catches another personnel break as freshman Maryland WR Juwann Winifree is suspended for Saturday. Old photos. Justin Meram gets a call-up to the Iraq national team. Dilly bar details.



November 19th, 2014 at 1:25 PM ^

In the old days (and maybe still) there used to be discussion areas (or forums) for UM football, UM basketball, etc. It was like MGoBlog with almost all the thoughtful posts excluded.


November 19th, 2014 at 11:25 AM ^

Does this post mark a shift in no longer referring to Spencer as Orson? I'd hoped you'd hang on to that and it'd just be a charmingly dated term, like "davenport" or "icebox" or "billfold."

Sent from MGoBlog HD for iPhone & iPad


November 19th, 2014 at 11:42 AM ^

I had forgotten about that being a side-benefit to the BTHC forming and it's apparently paying dividends now. UB fans seem to think they'll get invited to the BTHC if they move up to D-I (which is just enormously unlikely ime) but the fact that they have that option is very nice to see. Likely they'll move up and join the WCHA - an option unavailable to them a few years ago.

Same goes for any of our other prospective movers. Conference realignment certainly appears to be good for the growth of college hockey


November 19th, 2014 at 11:48 AM ^

gives fans more time to do the football/ice hockey double-header.  

The only TV coverage for the game Saturday night is on something called "Comcast Network 900."  I honestly had no idea what that was until 2 minutes ago.  One quick look at their schedule and it seems easy to move the game (unless perhaps "Rocktagon MMA" absolutely has to air at 10 PM, LOL).



November 19th, 2014 at 11:54 AM ^

Nebraska built their new basketball stadium with space for a refrigeration unit and there's a popular program at Nebraska-Omaha and a USHL team in town. The other seven schools without hockey would most likely need a Pegula like donation ($102m with $88m for a stadium) to start a program.


November 19th, 2014 at 12:17 PM ^

At the risk of tooting my own horn, I touched on it a little bit in the only diary I've ever written (History of Big Ten Hockey. In the User HOF).

I believe Nebraska is far and away the most likely team to join next.

After that, Illinois and Rutgers also have strong ACHA teams. I believe Iowa as well. Northwestern has apparently 'explored' the idea but I doubt anything will happen there. Maryland is another option that could build off the Capitals fanbase, but I think they're poor at the moment.

I've never heard anything on Indiana or Purdue so I'd assume they're among the least likely


November 19th, 2014 at 11:53 AM ^

The depression pamphlet is ... well yeah.

The volleyball photographs are great.  I've never looked at one of the photoalbums before.  Worth the time.

The Harbaugh anticipation is a little weird considering it's likely a 90% foregone conclusion one way or the other. 

Seidel is an idiot, but not the biggest idiot.  Suffice it to say I made the mistake of reading Sharp today.  He broke new ground in demonstrating how a clever 10th grader with an axe to grind would do a sports column.


November 19th, 2014 at 12:10 PM ^

First off, I understand that Michigan had no desire to have this football game at 3:30--it is only happening because the conference television network decided the game would be at 3:30.

But the fact that Michigan is scheduling a hockey game for the same day as a football game is ridiculous in itself, and the fact that there are no contingency plans at all for this is even more ridiculous.  As a season ticket holder, if there were a volleyball game at the same time as the hockey game, I would have received an e-mail by now warning me about the difficulty of finding a parking spot and directing me to alternate lots.  Instead, nothing at all has been sent to us to let us know where to find a place to park, or even acknowledging the inconvenience in any way at all.

Minnesota has a rule--no home hockey games on days with home football games.  This seems to work out for them; why can't Michigan have the same rule?  Hockey tickets are pretty expensive (without looking it up, I think it's about $25-$30 per game, even as part of a season ticket package), and if we're only going to have 9 home conference games a year, it's pretty crappy to the season ticket holders to make it so hard to attend one of those 9 games.


November 19th, 2014 at 12:14 PM ^

He's a tough read regardless of sport or topic.  Considering he's been at the Freep for 15 years and we're just hearing about him is a good indication of his writing "chops".


November 19th, 2014 at 12:19 PM ^

I'm guessing you didn't see the Freep's OTHER sanctimonious piece on the Clark thing from Rochelle Riley. My eyes started to twitch while reading so I had to click away.


November 19th, 2014 at 1:04 PM ^

For those not inclined to read it -- and, please, I urge you not to -- she decided to one-up Seidel by saying that Clark should have been dismissed from the team even before last weekend.  It's not clear why, but it apparently has something to do with a traffic ticket Clark got once, since that features prominently in the list of his "crimes" (along with his "involvement" in a civil suit for non-payment of rent).  Playing football is a privilege, you see, so we can't have traffic scofflaws on the team.


November 19th, 2014 at 1:46 PM ^

A week ago, she wrote about how the Pistons should "come home" to Detroit, based on the fact that she attended a Pistons game for the first time in years and saw that few people were there (newsflash!) and the crowd wasn't "joyful" (understandable, when you're watching Josh Smith chuck 3-pt bricks).

She literally "doesn't know where the Pistons are in the standings", but thinks they should move downtown, as that would get people to come. Perhaps if she had done 10 minutes of research, she would have seen attendance went into the tank when the team's W-L record also plummeted.

And I don't even like going to the Palace -- too far (for me) and its parking lot is terrible. But if the Pistons were 55 game winners again, people would go to Auburn Hills. And if they are/were 25 game winners, they won't go to downtown Detroit. 

It was really embarrassing. I felt dumber for having read it. I hadn't read anything by her in a few months (b/c of previous bad experiences) and I sure am not going to read her "hot take" on Frank Clark.


November 19th, 2014 at 2:31 PM ^

...instead of Seidel, who went on a "tear" talking about being a dad and having zero tolerance.  He was faaaar worse.  He basically said that Hoke should've kicked Clark off the team immediately, facts be damned.  

I never knew about the non-payment of rent issue and the driving on the wrong side of the center line without proof of insurance or "proper plates".  At least I got something from her article.  From Seidel?  All I got was a feeling of remorse that I didn't pursue print journalism and improve upon the crap that's out there now.


November 19th, 2014 at 4:34 PM ^

but with zero context that might lend any support to any "point" she might be trying to make.  Is she advocating that a traffic citation should count as a strike toward forfeiture of the privilege of playing football?  If she's arguing Clark should have been gone before this past weekend, doesn't that suggest his past record was on par with his alleged assault, or maybe that Hoke should have seen this coming based on Clark's past record?  If so, that's a ridiculous argument -- little did I know that a traffic violation and an alleged failure to pay rent (if that's what it even was -- all the article says is that Clark was "involved" in a civil suit for nonpayment of rent) are gateways to domestic violence.  It's almost as though she's just filling a column quota and doesn't actually give a sh*t about college athletics or the Michigan football program -- nah, that couldn't be it.

On the other hand, I'm arguing with you about which of two Free Press columnists is worse, so it's hard to say you're wrong.  When you get below a certain threshold of incompetence, it defies objective measurement.


November 19th, 2014 at 12:21 PM ^

Was glad to read the strong feedback to Jeff Seidel's article about Hoke.  Just searching for anything to dump on Hoke and the program.  What a jackass.



November 19th, 2014 at 12:23 PM ^

I almost posted a forum topic on Seidel when I read that article, but didn't want to encourage people to read it.  What a douchebag.  The Free Press should have fired Siedel immediately upon submitting the story rather than wait to get the facts from the public that he is a douche.


November 19th, 2014 at 12:26 PM ^

Funny how getting down on the field is now a big deal.  It didnt used to be - heck, when I was in school the damn stadium was left open in the off season and anybody could get on the field that wanted to.

On the first really snowy/icey day we used to swipe a bunch of trays from the cafeteria and then go "sledding" down the steps and onto the field.  We built a ramp over the wall and with the astro turf frozen you could travel quite a ways if you could hit the field with some momemtum!


November 19th, 2014 at 1:50 PM ^

I visited Michigan (from NJ) as an impressionable high schooler in January.  After wandering around a dead campus, we drove down to "See the Big House."  Lo and Behold, everything was unlocked, and we walked all the way down and onto the field, where my folks took a picture of me in the endzone, in the snow, in a Michigan jacket. 

I applied to a dozen colleges as a senior, but really, none of the other ones had a chance after that moment.  Sad that it's not possible anymore. 


November 19th, 2014 at 12:30 PM ^

Why does the NCAA need an entire year before it can rename the first and second rounds?  (The 2015 tournament will still use the "second/third round" nonsense.)