Unverified Voracity Swears At Kicker Comment Count

Brian November 24th, 2015 at 12:55 PM


[Eric Upchurch]

Peppers Peppers Peppers Peppers. Nick Baumgardner about one of the pressing issues of The Game:

Paging Mr. Peppers
It's officially time to empty the tank. Michigan can't afford to save anyone's legs for a potential game next week, because, well, there may not be a game next week. And that means any type of Jabrill Peppers pitch count likely gets tossed out the window. Harbaugh dropped a little nugget in passing Monday about Peppers' ability as a running back, going so far to say he's going to have to think rather hard about how Michigan's multi-faceted athlete is best used on the roster. Maybe Harbaugh's actually talking about next season, or maybe he's planting another seed in Ohio State's head.

We had a caller on MGoRadio ask a similar question about Peppers's deployment. Neither Ace or I thought you could sacrifice him on defense in either the short or long term. In the short term, Michigan's about to face a team that has a heavy QB run game and will test the edge in various ways. In the long term, Peppers is going to figure out coverage and be an all-around terror.

But: I might be inclined to steal some snaps on D with Peppers out of the lineup if that meant he could get more action on offense. They've already offloaded kick returns to Jourdan Lewis with great success; I might be amenable to Peppers leaving on passing downs against OSU as Michigan plays Stribling/Clark/Lewis on the corner. Anything else and I think you have to have him in there.

HYPE VIDEO. This is A+ work here.

The Banner Incident. Can you imagine the reaction if this was to happen today?

It was on this day (November 24) in 1973 the Ohio State Buckeyes performed one of the most heinous acts in any rivalry, in any sport – they went after the sacred GO BLUE M CLUB SUPPORTS YOU banner.

If you aren’t aware of this, or have been living under a rock, I have created a YouTube Video that documents this act, one which legendary broadcaster Bob Ufer decried that the Buckeyes “will meet a dastardly fate here for that!”

The the Buckeyes returned in 1975 word was that Woody wanted to do it again, but this time the Michigan Students were ready.  The Buckeyes decided that discretion was the better part of valor, so no dastardly shenanigans ensued.

Twitter would roll over and die. Apparently they tried it again in 1977! We do have some spicy rival business of recent vintage thanks to Marcus Hall, so there's that. I appreciate OSU's willingness to come out and be dastardly before or during a game. Really adds something to the proceedings, unlike MSU's current student-taunting tradition.

An oral history of The Guarantee. Featuring this much more effective way to ice the kicker:

Frantz: In my mind, if I make that field goal, I'm the governor of Ohio. That's how big it would have been. When I was teaching myself to kick in the backyard, my father would literally say, "This is to win the Michigan game." I had no doubt in my mind that I wanted a chance to make the field goal.

I trotted out on the field, set my tee on the ground and looked at my holder, Scott Powell. Then I heard the referee blow his whistle for a timeout. It was a TV timeout, which meant it was an extended timeout. I looked around and saw a hundred thousand people and realized they were focused on me.

Just before the timeout was over, I looked over and saw Bo Schembechler about three-quarters of the way out on the field. He was screaming, "Frantz, you little s---, you're going to miss this kick!" He was going nuts, and his coaches were trying to hold him back. People ask me all the time if icing the kicker works. I tell them, "Well, in my case it did." It was a perfect snap and a perfect hold, but I hooked it a couple of feet left. There's no explanation and no excuse.

This is why I want to fight anyone who brings up whether a coach is "classy" or not. Hypocrisy, malfeasance, punting in plus territory: I'm listening. Whether a guy drops too many f-bombs or, in Woody's case, is constantly plotting ways to assassinate someone does not register.

Never has a mascot fight video been more accurate. I like the hat, too.

Who wins a Michigan-Ohio State mascot fight?

RIVALRY WEEK MASCOT FIGHT CLUB: Michigan Football vs. Ohio State Buckeyes

Posted by SB Nation on Monday, November 23, 2015

A man who remembers his promises. Posted to reddit, Jim Harbaugh gets a letter from a Michigan fan, Harbaugh asks her to meet for the PSU game, and kapow:


It's not surprising, but it's a little surprising even so.

Exit Les. Les Miles is about to be out of a job at LSU:

Les Miles' tenure at LSU may be coming to an end, according to a highly ranked source involved with the decision-making process.

A decision on his future is likely to come in the very near future, with many Tiger Athletic Foundation (TAF) members ready to move on and start a new era in Baton Rouge. The $15 million-dollar buyout clause that is in Les Miles' contract is what many perceive as one of the bigger hang-ups in making a move.

However, TAF, the athletic program's booster club that funds a lot of the athletic programs for LSU, will not allow the buyout issue to thwart its plans, according to a high-ranking source.

Even before LSU's dispiriting loss to Ole Miss, their equivalent of a regent actually said to an actual newspaper actually on the record that if Miles won out "that complicates it." Now that he's lost one of them he's a dead man walking. At this point there are multiple independently-sourced reports from just about everyone that covers LSU; despite a 15 million dollar buyout Les's demise is imminent.

On the one hand, that's a quick trigger finger. Miles is just one year removed from a string of 10-win seasons. On the other, he went 8-5 last year and is currently 4-3 in the SEC. He is a CEO head coach who lost John Chavis. He's never hired an OC who has done much other than run a basic set of plays and waste prodigious WR talent. He's a Cooper-esque 2-7 against Saban. LSU fans assume they'll just sweep up most of the massive talent base LSU sits on no matter who the coach is. Miles is 62; things probably don't get better from here.

I'd can him if I was magically placed in charge of LSU, but I'd can just about anybody short of Harbaugh if I thought I could get Tom Herman.

None of this really impacts Michigan—I don't think M was even peripherally involved with anyone LSU is recruiting this year—but Miles will be an interesting name for a lot of mid-level schools. He'll be cheap for the same reason Jedd Fisch is cheap for Michigan this year (a big buyout), and he's got a long and mostly successful track record. While I think hiring him would be a bad idea, a lot of bad ideas are brought to life. Could he end up at, say, Illinois?

On the other hand, if LSU is actually targeting these guys… Names for the LSU job include the Usual Suspect and lolwut:

"Florida State head coach Jimbo Fisher is the main target for many foundation members; with names like Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney, TCU head coach Gary Patterson and even former NFL coach Jon Gruden being tossed around as well."

"Jimbo, Dabo: you have both proven that the winner of the FSU-Clemson game will easily be a playoff entrant should the rest of the season break correctly. You are paid exorbitantly well. But forget all that and play Alabama every year just to get out of your division. Sound good?


"Jimbo Fisher to LSU" is going to be this year's "Saban to Texas," a coaching rumor that will never do anything except line Jimmy Sexton's pockets.

Taco Charlton self-portrait. Via the Players' Tribune:


I don't have anything clever to say. I just wanted you to see it.

This isn't a great way to do it. The Big Ten wants to reduce the age at which you can start college hockey without burning years of eligibility from 21 to 20, and they've taken the matter direct to the NCAA without even stopping by college hockey to check. The obvious reason why:

In a memo obtained by College Hockey News, college hockey coaches voted 49-11 in a straw poll against the legislation. That poll has no bearing on the NCAA vote, but it demonstrates the mindset of the college hockey community as a whole. The specific 11 to vote for it is unclear, though six are presumed to be the Big Ten coaches.

Everybody except the Big Ten and a smattering of bluebloods (dollars to donuts "yes" voters outside the Big Ten include North Dakota, BC, Notre Dame, and BU) hates the idea. The rest of that article is everyone arguing self-interested positions that are obvious.

The Big Ten's hope is that by taking it direct to the NCAA the larger body will look at an outlying sport and try to bring it closer to the line all other sports take. With the league looking like hot butt—just one program, Michigan, is even on the NCAA bubble a third of the way through the season—this looks like an attempt to not be hot butt that doesn't involve firing the various terrible coaches in the league.

Special demerit to NMU head coach Walt Kyle for this take:

"A lot of these schools right now, and I'm not naming names, are doing everything in their power to push the scales in their favor," Northern Michigan coach Walt Kyle said. "A lot of these guys should be embarrassed. They want NCAA (tournament) games on home campus sites. Why is that?"

Because neutral sites have been a financial and public relations disaster that holds back all of college hockey. Because single-elimination playoff hockey is inherently ridiculous and even more so when it's been played in an empty AHL building. It's unclear why Kyle even cares about this at all since he's managed to acquire one tourney bid in the thirteen years he's been head coach.

This isn't a good look by the Big Ten but if Kyle's opinion is representative it's the main reason college hockey has the worst playoff in sports. In that case, all these guys can get bent.

Happily ever after. I think it all worked out for the best, really.

Everyone ended up where they should be.

Doubtful. MSU will try to get Ed Davis a sixth year, which will require some proof that Davis was legitimately injured as a freshman. Survey says not likely since he was the scout team player of the week twice:

2011 SEASON: Redshirted . . . named Scout Team Defensive Player of the Week vs. Minnesota . . . selected Scout Team Special Teams Player of the Week vs. Central Michigan.

Coaches try but the NCAA is usually pretty strict in these departments. Michigan is apparently going to try to get a redshirt for Mario Ojemudia, but I very much doubt that will come off either.

Etc.: Spencer on deceased rugby force of nature Jonah Lomu is worth your time. Not looking so hot at Penn State right now. Jake Rudock is Jarrod Wilson? Basketball will  change its starting lineup, no doubt starting at the five. Charlie Strong is about two-thirds of the way down the RichRod road. Steve Everitt's bandana.



November 24th, 2015 at 1:19 PM ^

Some commentators have suggested that LSU is insane, and use the Hat's recruiting (including the currently #1-ranked class) as a big piece of evidence.

I'm a cynic here, but I think LSU believes it will be able to recruit well no matter who the coach is. Because I think they know that the reason they recruit well is not just the Hat's charming personality. I think they have a reasonable expectation that their recruiting "advantages" will be unchanged with a new coach.

And if that is true, then this is probably a rational move. LSU has seen gobs of talent cycle through its goalposts since Saban has taken over, and it has fielded some genuinely impressive defenses. But the mediocre offense that Les produces year after year is a problem. The fact that he is mediocre with the kind of talent he has had (OBJ has an easier time producing in the NFL than he did in college. How is this even possible?) is scandalous.

And his in-game management is ineffective. And he whitewashes serious legal and ethical problems in his players like no other coach in football.

And LSU has become a destination program. If they fire Les they know they'll be able to get someone worthwhile to replace him.

Chitown Kev

November 24th, 2015 at 1:36 PM ^

LSU was not getting all of that Louisiana talent on a regular basis...a lot of it was going to Alabama and some of it was going into the Big 12 and other places (e.g. John David Booty).


So if LSU doesn't get that hire correct, schools from all over the country will descend on Louisiana high schools like vutures.


November 24th, 2015 at 1:53 PM ^

That's definitely true (though Booty was post-Saban and post-Josh Booty) and LA is now LSU territory.

The subtext to my comment, which appears to be a bit too "sub," is that I believe LSU is as dirty as it gets in recruiting. If the Money believes they can do better than Les, I think it's because the Money already knows exactly what is involved in landing those incredible classes. Thus, getting a new coach isn't going to hurt the pipeline.

Michigan Difference

November 24th, 2015 at 1:50 PM ^

I agree that LSU should be a destination program, but if winning 78% of your games and a national championship while playing in the toughest conference in the country gets you the axe, why would you leave a Florida State or Clemson for that?

And if you're at a stepping stone school (Tom Herman), there are going to be a lot of other openings this year and next year where your job security isn't based on beating Alabama.  I wouldn't be surprised if LSU gets a bit of a rude awakening.


November 24th, 2015 at 1:56 PM ^

Because LSU is completely behind the football program. You will never lack for effort to win. They went all-in with Nick Saban and have not backed off. They will invest in facilities, in staff, in support, and in anything else a coach needs (possibly including things that the NCAA wouldn't approve of) to succeed.

They have a much better fanbase than FSU, and I believe a bigger one than Clemson as well.

If Herman is offered LSU or Georgia he would be absolutely insane not to take it.


November 24th, 2015 at 2:50 PM ^

If I'm Herman, I'm taking the Georgia job over the LSU one.  You get about the same quality of talent but with way less drama from the fans, and your division is quite a bit easier historically.  I do wonder what happens if/when Miles leaves.  Usually when these guys depart, stuff comes out about improprieties under their watch.  While I doubt the NCAA will do much, if it becomes blaringly clear that guys were getting lots of money and stuff was being overlooked, you might be walking into a USC situation where you are behind the 8-ball and then get canned once the sanctions are over.


November 24th, 2015 at 4:56 PM ^

it wasn't that long ago when the SEC East was stacked (with outstanding Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee programs, along with a decent South Carolina) and the West was weak.  LSU was okay, but never great until Saban arrived.  Alabama was up & down from the end of the Stallings era to the arrival of Saban.  Auburn and Arkansas would put excellent teams together here and there but were very inconsistent.  Texas A&M was in the Big XII.  Ole Miss sucked.

I think this year's coaching carousel will go a long way to showing whether the West is likely to remain the dominant half, of if the East will catch up.  If UGA, Missouri, and South Carolina make big hires while LSU fucks up, that could swing the long-term balance.  The West could also lose a guy like Dan Mullen to a higher-profile gig somewhere else. 




November 24th, 2015 at 8:41 PM ^

but there was a 3 year run there in the late 1990s where MISSISSIPPI STATE was the best team in the West.  They won the West in 1998, finished 10-2 and #12 in the country in 1999, and again were a Top 20 team in 2000.

It all went downhill for Miss State starting in 2001 --- and that's right when LSU exploded upwards with Saban --- but even the Bulldogs did have their moment.


November 24th, 2015 at 3:21 PM ^

but he doesn't "deserve" to be fired. Perfect example of a guy that helped take a program to another level but plateaus after. Kids only leave Louisiana for those very few, elite, momentarily "it" programs (USC, Bama) and even then it's rare! Kids don't leave anymore. They could hire a major, younger name but they have to right now or in 5 years after 5 good but not NC caliber years. IMO, Miles was a good OC away from more titles but he just couldn't hire that one guy to stay and compliment the defense. Miles has a couple less rings because of that, IMO. He deserves to retire there but LSU has to act now to avoid a drop off in that time between. He'll turn some mid-major into a very competitive team for a decade or so.

Pepto Bismol

November 24th, 2015 at 2:12 PM ^

Hold the phone on that.  It's dawning on me that I don't trust this guy as far as I can throw him. 

Did 2 seconds of research, went back and asked him.  He's referencing the Spartan beat covering Dantonio's press conference today where MD basically says (paraphrased), "Ed intends to come back, but we obviously still have to submit the paperwork."

I don't believe this is a done deal.  I should've known better.  Apologies.


November 24th, 2015 at 1:20 PM ^

Can you imagine First Take after the banner incident? Stephen A and Skip would get days of shouting. Colin Cowherd would go nuclear. There would be thought pieces from the New York Times about the coarsening of the culture. ESPN would have special correspondants on it. It would be huge.

It's one of those things I think of when people talk about "Athletes these days" -- back in the day, things were often worse in terms of sportsmanship.

Evil Empire

November 24th, 2015 at 1:21 PM ^

Reading between the lines, the power programs have talented 18-22 year olds and they don't want them playing against the 25-year-olds that lower-profile programs are using in order to be competitive?


November 24th, 2015 at 1:23 PM ^

RE: the hockey issue:

This looks kind of ugly. Yes, I understand that there are age difference concerns, but that has been a part of the game for years. The fact that the B1G appears to be doing an end-around on the rest of the sport is a very bad look. This could have been handled better.

The NCAA tourney issue is completely separate, and Walt Kyle is being ridiculous about it. Especially in the last few years, where home ice rounds would feature B1G schools traveling to face rabid local fanbases of smaller schools. I think a school like Ferris that has a great season deserves to host a game, instead of traveling for 5 or 10 hours to attend a regional that is either empty or packed with fans of a lower-seeded team.

Playing The Field

November 24th, 2015 at 1:27 PM ^

Here's a novel concept for the BIG hockey teams, don't offer 15 year olds who by the time they graduate high school may or may not have turned into the player you thought they were. What is the priority, to send kids to the NHL or WIN? All the smaller name teams have had so much success becuase they don't get the blue chip prospect who either leaves after 1-2 years, or isn't the player they thought he was. The talent gap isn't that great that them playing with a young blue chip roster makes up for the lack of strength and experience of the experienced teams with kids that stay all four years. 


November 24th, 2015 at 1:33 PM ^

Reading the PennLive article I breathe an easy sigh of relief knowing we've been there and come out of the other side in one year. One moonshot of a hire mind you but we're clear of the toxins.
The future is now and it's blindingly bright.

Thank you Niners
Thank you Hackett

Go Blue


November 24th, 2015 at 1:51 PM ^

Problem is, this moonshot hire is not repeatable for other teams.

I'd like to think that we did something really great to earn Harbaugh, but the fact is we were just lucky.  

Harbaugh is batshit crazy and marches to his own drummer.  We were just plain lucky that he grew up in Ann Arbor loving Michigan, instead of in Austin loving Texas or Athens loving Georgia, or some other place.

There is no other Jim Harbaugh out there, and we got the only one.



November 24th, 2015 at 1:34 PM ^

I was at that 10-10 banner game. At 15 I was ready to charge the field and bust some buckeyes, but I was with my mom :-)  I can't imaging being any more worked up than I was at that point in time.

We were under the impression that a tie would get us to the Rose Bowl since that seemed to be the standard as I belive OSU had gone the year before. But we were screwed by a vote of Big 10 Athletic directors. Bo went off on that.

Yard Dog

November 24th, 2015 at 1:53 PM ^

seeing the game on TV while having Ufer on the radio.  The video link today just fired me up.  No offense, but the Marcus Hall double bird flip pales in comparison to the 1973 incident.

The 1971 game where Woody threw the yard markers on the field and then spiked the first down marker into the ground like a javelin was awesome too.
Those were the days...


November 24th, 2015 at 2:13 PM ^

The justification was that Franklin had broken his collarbone and wouldn't be close to 100% in the Rose Bowl.

The unfortunate thing with the whole "we were screwed" narrative is that Ohio State went out and absolutely smoked USC 42-21. Considering Bo's miserable record in the Rose Bowl—especially our typically anemic offensive performances—it's difficult for me to envision Michigan coming anywhere close to that performance by the Buckeyes in that Rose Bowl.

Which means that the ADs who cast the votes for OSU could always point to the Rose Bowl results to support their decision.


November 24th, 2015 at 1:39 PM ^

Whenever I saw a video with Dave Brandon in it at Michigan, my skin would crawl.  I wanted to punch him in the mouth.  And this was true for me since 2012 when he dismissively decided that the band was just a meaningless hood ornament and was not worthy of going to Dallas for the Alabama game.

But man, I've got to be honest . . . I watched him in the Toys R Us video link and I thought he seemed absolutely fine.  He was engaging, he paid attention to the interviewers, he was very knowledgeable about his business and about the toys on display.  There was none of the Brandon "I'm smart and you are stupid" attitude.  There was no "This is beneath me, I'm just killing time for now" attitude.

He was, I don't know, like a real CEO.


Maybe he learned a lesson, maybe it's just an act for the cameras.  But you can see how people could think he could do a good job when they originally brought him on as AD.  We'll see how quickly he wears out his welcome or not at Toys R Us. 


November 24th, 2015 at 2:25 PM ^

Agree and disagree.... Brandon's problem was that he didn't realize being AD of Michigan and CEO of a company were dfferent things.   As CEO, mazimizing profits is oftentimes the end-all, but AD of Michigan is as much about perserving tradition, preparing for the future AND Winning (and alumni/fans will gladly spend money if you make sure those things happen)