Unverified Voracity Smells A Phone Comment Count

Brian February 27th, 2015 at 11:28 AM

HELLO. I am back. I was blank yesterday after being in a car for like 14 hours, but here are some links to other things.


According to Wikipedia, I have been to the place where this was conceived.

Things I learned in Iowa. A sampling.

  1. Iowa is not as flat as Nebraska
  2. …but it's close
  3. …and it's really surprisingly large when you have to drive from one corner to the other
  4. Do not smell a pig farmer's phone
  5. …especially if he's presenting it you to like the natives might present Dr. Livingstone an eyeball to consume
  6. …even if he looks stunningly like Dr. Drew
  7. David Foster Wallace was not joking about the omnipresence of the howling mid-American gale that scours pockets from your face when there are shards of ice to fling at you
  8. …this does at least keep the roads clear
  9. You can be relieved and grateful to see a Subway

This is maybe not enough things to justify the time spent but needs must.

Here are all these things and then a school that's like NOPE. As Ace covered this morning, there's another uniform hijink in the near future. (Can hijinks be singular?) The basketball uniforms aren't iconic like football, so the proportional outrage is lower. I'm still bugged by the fact that Adidas is coming up with one design element and applying it to everyone because they want to advertise themselves, with no thought to how they could help Michigan out.

Yeah yeah

Michigan did draw the line at Adidas's Zubaz monstrosities a few years back, so at least there's that.

Still, I'm jealous that Indiana's the uniform in the center going NOPE here:

"We have seen your ideas and find them lacking." –university that employs Tom Crean.

I wish we had the desire to do that. And the desire to go back to the 1989 throwbacks permanently.


"These throwbacks appear to be jerseys Michigan actually used to wear. They just don't get it, do they?" –The Brandon formerly known as athletic director

A seven footer! 2016 C commit Jon Teske was supposed to be growing constantly, as high school people tend to do, and now he's broken through a symbolic threshold:

Jon Teske has grown 1 inch since verbally committing to play basketball at Michigan back in early August.

This would be trivial if not for one fact: When Teske enrolls in 2016, he will officially be U-M's first 7-foot player since Ben Cronin, the first recruit coach John Beilein signed when he arrived in Ann Arbor eight years ago.

Teske is reportedly a shot blocker, something Michigan hasn't had since Beilein arrived.

Other than adding strength and bulk and improving his quickness in the lane, Teske's defensive skills are already at an elite level. He provides Medina with a safety net on the back line and blocks shots with a combination of a pterodactyl's wingspan and sharp instincts. Most impressively, he does so without fouling.

"The number of shots he changes is just unbelievable," Hassinger said. "That's what Michigan will get out of him -- he's such a good rim-protector. ... We can do so much defensively because he just rules the paint."

Yes, please.

Would you go so far as to say he is also strategic? Jedd Fisch gets in on the Jameis Winston praise pile:

Sounds like a man to play Battletech with. Meanwhile, another quote on Harbaugh from Petty:

"Outstanding guy," Petty said. "Just a football dude. That's the best way I can describe it. He just gave us a lot of advice about what to expect here (at the combine), about how to handle everything, especially going in as a rookie into a camp and what he expects as a coach in that scenario, things like that.

"We were tickled to death, anytime you get a chance to meet and talk to a guy who has been in it for four years and had a lot of success in it."

Harbaugh is definitely a Football Dude, as anyone who has watched that QB clinic video and giggled about knuckle placement knows.

Marketing back in the day. Gary Moeller repeats "keeps ticket prices down" three times in about 30 seconds at the end of this clip about marketing from a 1991 edition of Michigan Replay:

The word "brand" does not make an appearance.

We like this better because it doesn't work as well. It's that time of year when NFL guys ding spread QBs because their offenses provide too many open receivers to judge whether the guy can fit it in tight windows:

I think the NFL guy was saying that tight windows are an inevitability in the league rather than pro-style is necessarily better. (Or even a concept that really means much other than Our QB Don't Run. New England is basically Texas Tech with a separate LeGarrette Blount offense stapled to it.)

And stay out? CHL teams are making noises like they would withdraw from Washington if their for-profit enterprises with mid five-digit attendances have to give their players anything other than a per diem and the vague promise of an education package maybe a sixth of them will use:

Silvertips GM Garry Davidson was clearly singing from the same songbook when he told legislators if the state did not exempt the teams from minimum wage laws, “it could negatively impact our ability to operate and would force us to move or not operate in the state.”It’s an age-old tactic used by sports teams and it’s age-old because it so often works. Build us a new arena or we’ll go to a place where they’ll happily build one for us. Give us tax breaks and concessions or we’ll have to pick up our ball and go somewhere else. And in this case, grant us an exemption from laws governing the basic human right to minimum wage or we’ll take our teenagers and have them entertain hockey fans somewhere else.

Oh really? Considering the Everett Silvertips (4,898 average fans per game), Spokane Chiefs (5,570), Seattle Thunderbirds (4,353) and Tri-City Americans (3,976) are attracting decent home crowds, it’s safe to assume the revenue they’re drawing from their regular season gate alone is robust. Probably multi-millions.

A CHL departure from Washington is about as likely as the Big Ten re-implementing freshman eligibility. There aren't enough markets in BC and Alberta that aren't already covered. Meanwhile on the other side of the continent, a QMJHL team just sold for 25 million dollars.

Silver lining: it turns out there is in fact a sports organization that can make the NCAA look good.

Obligatory. Ohio State has a five star recruit incoming.

This is man with a good super power. Michigan Hockey Now pings commit Nick Pastujov about various personal things. He has never gone to a concert, he likes the World Cup, he envisions having a hilarious dinner with Bill Gates, Steve Carrell, and Bob Marley, and he has a very practical approach to super powers: "could do anything." That just about covers it, I'd think.

Etc.: Kentucky fans are terrified of Northwestern.


Yostbound and Down

February 27th, 2015 at 11:43 AM ^

Well, Iowa by the Mississippi isn't so bad. My friend got married in Burlington a couple years ago...wasn't the cornfield I imagined. It was still a cornfield though, but there were some trees too (and a bigass ordnance dump).

And visited the Quad Cities. It's not unpleasant out there, some decent breweries.


February 27th, 2015 at 11:46 AM ^

"(Or even a concept that really means much other than Our QB Don't Run. New England is basically Texas Tech with a separate LeGarrette Blount offense stapled to it.)"


Naturally, LeGarrette Blount went to Oregon


February 27th, 2015 at 11:55 AM ^

The O-H-I-O thing with his arms.  

Also... Brian, you drinkin' out there in Iowa?  The Washington teams have mid-4 digit attendances and freshman would again be made ineligible.  Anyway, having driven across the state many times for ski trips prior to having any money, I agree that Iowa is a long series of rolling hills and is actually surprisingly pretty.


February 27th, 2015 at 11:56 AM ^

It would be nice if we could ever get an NHL franchise here in Seattle. There was some talk locally about the possibility a few years ago in connection with a proposal to build a combo NBA/hockey stadium, but I think that's all dead in the water now. I'll grant that Seattle isn't much of a hockey town, but it's got to at least make as much sense as Dallas or Arizona.


February 27th, 2015 at 12:02 PM ^

I challenge you to drive the length of Kansas.  I've never done that myself, but I've driven through enough of the state to know that you will reach a point where you are happy just to see a single tree.

oriental andrew

February 27th, 2015 at 12:28 PM ^

Very true. I've driven from ATL to DEN and spent a good amount of time on I-70. Also have clients in multiple eastern Kansas cities (KC, Wichita, Manhattan). The Flint Hills and tall grass prairies are actually quite picturesque with the rolling hills, despite the relative lack of trees. Western Kansas is just miserable. 

Then again, it's basically like a longer version of ohio. Driving from AA to ATL and back, it was always amazing to me how depressing the ohio landscape is once you get north of Cincy (or maybe as far as Dayton). 


February 27th, 2015 at 1:13 PM ^

I've travelled a decent bit: I've been to all 50 states; I once road-tripped to Alaska from Michigan. 

I don't bring that up to brag, just to say I have some data points.  And I must say, that stretch of highway is THE WORST

140 miles where Lima is the "highlight", all on 2 lanes (feel free to expand this highway at any point Ohio!), absolutely nothing to see and heavy truck traffic.  Horrible.

Bando Calrissian

February 27th, 2015 at 12:10 PM ^

I really enjoy that not everyone is allowing Adidas to force the stupid uniform template on them.

Behold: the full Indiana spectrum

I'm not sure if I'm more impressed at how nice these look, or infuriated that Adidas can, in fact, do this the right way, and Michigan isn't making them do so for us.


February 27th, 2015 at 12:45 PM ^

If WHL teams in Washington were interested in being competitive rather than making profits, they'd push incredibly hard for a minimum wage; it'd make it that much easier to convince their players to play for them and not pick another development route.


February 27th, 2015 at 12:49 PM ^

many times over the years, and I think the western parts of the state along I-70 are beautful in a strange, almost abstract kind of way. It's just gently rising pasture or open range land as far as the eye can see on both sides of the interstate, punctuated only by the occasional small town or copse of trees off in the distance.

That being said, it's always exciting to finally cross the border into Colorado and start straining the eyeballs for the first faint glimpse of the Front Range.


February 27th, 2015 at 1:03 PM ^

I tend to take US-36 instead of I-70 ........ I've probably done the drive across Kansas 15-20 times in my life. 


Eastern Colorado is pretty dreadful (brown wasteland that smells like cattle) ... but Kansas is the rolling prairie that's generally green, with the occasional small towns.  Sunflower season in the late summer is gorgeous.  Flint Hills are highly under-appreciated.  The Arikaree Breaks in the far Northwest almost nobody (including many Kansas residents!) knows about, but it truthfully resembles the South Dakota Badlands.


February 27th, 2015 at 1:38 PM ^

At various times, I have taken parts of US-24, 36, 40, 50, 56 and 160 across Kansas, just because I-70 is so horrible.  I couldn't agree more with this post: 

There is something fascinating about central and western Kansas, and all of these county seats with populations of 3,000 but street plans and county courthouses more appropriate for 50,000 people.  The people who settled there were so wrong about that part of the country--they thought that 40-acre farms would work out there just like they did in Eastern Kansas.

I also appreciated the Flint Hills area--it's the spot where you have a very clear transition from "Midwest" (with corn, wheat and trees) to "Plains" (with grasslands and cattle) in about 5-10 miles.


February 27th, 2015 at 1:00 PM ^

That Harbaugh video is going to consume the next 1:30 hours of my life.

Anonymous NFL guys talking about weaknesses of QBs always needs to be taken with a grain of salt, since there is a bit of gamemanship/draft manipulation going on.  Winston is going #1 because TB is pretty terrible at this football thing and he seems like a good fit for them, I guess.  But if you are sitting at #7/8, you may want Mariotta and his ilk to be knocked down so that a team like the Jets doesn't rise up and grab him.  

The issue with accuracy has to do more with arm strength than the offense.  What kills most spread QBs coming to the NFL is the same thing that kills pro-style guys who have weak arms - they can't get the ball out quickly enough before the defense gets to their receivers.  Mariotta has shown good enough arm strength, so I don't see the Oregon offense being some detriment to his ability to throw the ball.  And let's not act like FSU played a murderer's row of defenses; a number of Winston's INTs were jut bad throws he shouldn't have made.  Dude threw 28 INTs in 2 years, and the three no-INT games he had this year were against Citadel, Syracuse, and GT.  Whenever he played anything approximating a decent defense (Florida, Louisville, Virginia, Miami), he threw 10 picks and had middling accuracy.  Winston may work out in the NFL, but how anyone could watch this past year and think he's a much better pro prospect than a bunch of other guys because he is good at diagraming plays and has a cannon might be stretching credibility a bit.


February 27th, 2015 at 1:35 PM ^

Louisville takes the shittiest uniforms and happily wears them.

Iowa isn't that bad...it's really not that flat at all (no it's not mountainous) but I suppose driving 1-80 straight through could be considered a flat drive.


February 27th, 2015 at 1:42 PM ^

The only reason anyone likes the 1989 uniforms is because they're the 1989 uniforms. Using a logo in the spelling of a name is amateurish and terrible to begin with, but also using different fonts and offset sizes looks especially sloppy. And white block M's, really? Nobody would call that 'uniformz' if a modern design did it so prominently?

Blue Noise

February 27th, 2015 at 5:52 PM ^

I agree with this. Another design flaw in the '89 unis is the blue stripe on the shorts that doesn't continue up the side of the jersey. Looks goofy as hell to me.
My favorite bball uniforms are the ones we wore in the sixties. I think our uniforms, home or away, across any sport look best with no outlines around the numbers: