Unverified Voracity WSG Malevolent Djinn

Submitted by Brian on September 21st, 2010 at 2:21 PM

Men down. Two major injuries in the Big Ten just came down the pipe:

  • Badger linebacker Chris Borland, last year's Big Ten freshman of the year, is out for the season with a shoulder injury. It sounds like he will be replaced by sophomore Mike Taylor, who just returned from an offseason full of injury himself.
  • Iowa's Jewel Hampton was struck down by Angry Iowa Running-Back-Hating God, tearing his ACL. AIRHAG, as BHGP has taken to calling him, also saw fit to concuss Paki O'Meara, leaving Adam Robinson and "anybody else who wants to volunteer," according to Kirk Ferentz.

Iowa also lost second-string LB Bruce Davis for the season.

Iowa's looking like a potential swing game after the Arizona loss, and getting down to their equivalent of JT Floyd at tailback might mean Michigan's linebackers can actually get an angle on outside runs; I'll still believe M beats Wisconsin when the clock reads zero and I'm all like "woo New Year's Day," which isn't happening so don't get your hopes up.

Man down less sympathetically. The reason Dion Sims isn't playing for Michigan State is he has "allegedly been involved in a Detroit Public Schools computer theft ring involving 988 stolen laptops valued at around $800,000." This will presumably knock him out of the Michigan game unless Michigan State manages to swing a work-release program for him. (How does MSU manage to get all of this stuff done during the season? They could be making headway towards a third straight Fulmer Cup, but nooooo they only get in massive trouble from September to January.) QUICK EVERYONE LOOK AT THE JAW.

Speaking of hopes up. Michigan did not get punished by sportsbooks for the events of last weekend. They're now a 4.5 point favorite against MSU (up one), one point favorites against Iowa (up one) and Wisconsin (even), and 3 and 14 point dogs to PSU and OSU, respectively. IE: the most reliable predictive device available projects something slightly better than a 2-2 split against the meat of the Big Ten schedule. If Michigan takes care of business against BG, Indiana, Purdue, and Illinois they would be 9-3 if that comes true; even if they biff one of those four they'd be 8-4.

This makes me terribly nervous.

Troof. Orson's graphs are back and yeah:

denard-robinson-graph

Our other stuff looks like Run DMC, though, so we've got that going for us.

The other football. The Daily was there and so was I, and we both thought the same thing: whoah. 3,500 people packed out the officially 2,200 seat soccer stadium to see a 0-0 tie against Notre Dame, and the Daily is overrun with people who want to write the other football:

…at the latest mass meetings, the majority of students said they were interested in a different kind of football — the one with a “u” and an “o” and a significantly different ball. And each time, I did a double-take. This is the University of Michigan, after all, and all of you just want to cover soccer?

My friends and I tried to sit in the grandstand, which was full, and then migrated to the student side of the field, which was shockingly lively. The "Ultras," as they're calling themselves, badly need to work on their chants* but do an outstanding job of existing, especially since the soccer complex is way off campus.

There are games tomorrow and Saturday at 7 PM, with the latter against Ohio State.

*(A large number of them were classic tunes that saw a couple words replaced, with the weakest being "When The Saints Go Marching In" sung except they say "blue" instead of "saints." You've got two guys named "Saad" on the team! What do you think some working-class London hooligans would do with that? This is a layup.

Also, soccer and hockey have the same aims; many of Yost's cheers could be appropriated. Apparently some have, but I saw a 0-0 draw without any goal chants.)

Expansion: over? OSU AD Gene Smith says so:

"We're finished (with expansion)," Smith said. "The only thing that would cause us to look at it further is if someone contacted us. …The reason most of us say it's not done is because we think there are some schools that are going to try to talk to some conferences. But we're not actively out looking at expansion. After our October meetings, that's going to be the last we talk about it."

Fine by me. 14 or 16 team conferences are dumb.

Smith also says the schedule has not been finalized past '11 and '12 and that Michigan-OSU at the end of the year is not a given. Though he'll 'push for it," he doesn't know what "Barry Alvarez might bring in the room," to which I say if it's not bratwurst tell him to go back and get some.

Etc.: At least everyone's special teams suck. More on Kiffin's bizarre two-point hijinks. Full RR presser transcript. The Daily's story on the Shirtpocalypse is ironically paired with a big animated ad exhorting you to purchase their picture of Denard doing the Heisman on that Te'o. Must… not… smash… faceintodesk SPOCK.

Comments

West Texas Blue

September 21st, 2010 at 3:14 PM ^

+1000 to Spencer for using the word "Djinn."  Haven't seen that word since Tales of Phantasia, a Super NES game that was only released in Japan and the only way I could play it was because some guys with too much time on their hands translated the entire game and created a ROM that I could play on ZSNES.  Yes, good times.

The Wagon

September 21st, 2010 at 3:22 PM ^

I agree with everything about the soccer student section. I appreciate their effort and especially with a decent amount of international students on campus I think it would be really cool to have a legitimate crowd.  But really, their cheers suck.  They are all either minor variations of children's songs, completely nonsensical, or have been in a Frosted Flakes commercial ("We are the Wolverines the mighty mighty Wolverines").  That being said, if they took a few ideas from the Yost crowd and came up with a few original cheers, I think it would be fun.  Also, I felt like most of the cheers were somewhat forced and not organic--I think I'm spoiled by Yost.

Yostal

September 21st, 2010 at 3:36 PM ^

You plant seeds, they take time to grow.  It must be cultivated, cared for, watered, and covered so survives until it is strong enough to be transplanted to the empty lot.  However, in the meantime, you've put down 1982 style Tartan Turf out there because you don't want a big mud hole in the front of your yard.  So yes, it's artificial, but the real thing will come with time.

That said, seriously, if my buddy and I can sit down with the Michigan hockey roster this summer and figure out this season's new jokes* for when Michigan players score (this dates all the way back to "Coffee is for Croziers" and up to "Rust Never Sleeps" or "Louie Louie, Oh no, we gotta goal....yeah yeah yeah yeah yeah.." last season) then these guys can set up a blog, start a Cover It Live, and just start pitching like a sitcom writer's room.

*-This season we're rooting for a Lynch goal from Merrill so we can say "Merrill Lynch is bullish on Michigan" because we're dorks with an extensive knowledge of advertising slogans.

Talpostal

September 21st, 2010 at 3:47 PM ^

I disagree with you guys. Nearly every English-language soccer cheer is a repurposed popular song, it's not just Michigan Ultras. Cheering at a soccer game is just completely different from basketball/football/hockey and that's what's so great about it--chanting "Go Blue" for 90 minutes would be pretty lame.

I'm surprised that Brian, the USMNT fan that he is, doesn't realize that...especially because "When the Yanks Go Marching In" is one of the most popular USMNT cheers.

Yostal

September 21st, 2010 at 3:53 PM ^

I'm not disagreeing with the repurposing the Great American Song Book and Assorted Children's Songs for cheers.  But I also think it has to have an element of randomness to it.  Is there any reason why "You'll Never Walk Alone", a Rodgers and Hammerstein selection from Carousel should become the club's slogan and de facto anthem other than Gerry and the Pacemakers, a local Liverpool band covered it and it was frequently played before games for no other reason than they were just playing the top ten hits of the era in ascending order and the fans kept singing it after it fell out of the Top Ten?

Heck, "I Can't Turn You Loose" has no reason to be a Michigan hockey anthem other than it was played at a halftime show in 1980 and eventually became an MMB and crowd favorite?  The right thing in the right moment will do the trick and sometimes it just has to happen.

Also, why not just sing "Varsity", but the version where you just repeat the word "Varsity" for the whole of the song?  Or "I Wanna Go Back to Michigan"?  This could work!  Or not!  Who knows!

Twisted Martini

September 21st, 2010 at 3:32 PM ^

I got to think he was really dreading the Big 10 grabbing Pitt and Syracuse/Rutgers/BC/Hofstra/CCNY, thus asking Notre Dame to kindly shit or get off the pot with regards to joining us, or be forever left pressing his nose up against the glass of conference awesomeness.

Blue in Seattle

September 21st, 2010 at 3:35 PM ^

I think the key to the Daily's sale of the Denard Print is based on this,

"Specifically, NCAA regulations stipulate that “items that include an individual student-athlete’s name, picture or likeness, other than information items, may not be sold.”"

So can someone with legal training give an opinion on Brian offering T-Shirts that are just reproductions of this "informational" blog?

 

I Blue Myself

September 21st, 2010 at 9:22 PM ^

The Detroit News made very similar posters in 1989 to commemorate the Michigan basketball national championship, and they had to recall them because they were against NCAA rules.

http://www.nytimes.com/1989/04/22/sports/sports-people-basketball-ncaa-calls-a-foul-on-michigan-poster.html

According to that article, it could have cost Rumeal Robinson his eligibility for the next season, even though Robinson never made a dime from the posters and had nothing to do with their production.  Strange that the same thing would come up with another Robinson at Michigan.

I remember this because my dad tried to get Steve Fisher to autograph one of the illegal posters, and he wouldn't do it.

(I should note that it's possible the rules, or the NCAA's interpretation of them, have changed since 1989.)

Gene

September 21st, 2010 at 3:52 PM ^

So did MGoStore get a C&D? They used to be selling the "Shoelace" T no?

The whole thing reeks of BS. It doesn't matter what the NCAA regulations say: unless you're party to a contract that says you will follow thier stipulations (which authorized apparel makers no doubt are - not so much for random T shirt sellers) they don't mean squat. The only thing that limits you on what you can and cannot print is the relevent laws governing the use of one's likeness and copyright (with the attendent fairuse exemptions.)

IANAL, but something along the lines of "Shoelace" seems like it would be fair game.

OMG Shirtless

September 21st, 2010 at 4:11 PM ^

"[U]nless you're party to a contract that says you will follow their stipulations (which authorized apparel makers no doubt are - not so much for random T shirt sellers) they don't mean squat."

 

MGoStore shirts are printed by Underground Printing.  Underground Printing is a licensed by the University of Michigan to sell authorized apparel.  UGP obviously doesn't want to lose its license/authorization.

The FannMan

September 21st, 2010 at 6:00 PM ^

The school justifies its crackdown on the competition as an effort to protect Denard's elgibility from greedy people looking to make a quick buck.  It is perfect that the Daily story is right next to an add where the University is selling a picture of Denard and a player from ND.  (I wonder if they have to split the money with ND?)  Of course, that it is different b/c the rules allow the University to exploit, errrrr, profit off of, errrr, publicize its players.  Gee, I wonder who made up that rule?  Oh that's right, the NCAA did!  You know, an organization of the schools.  The School is not protecting Denard's eligibility, they are protecting their profit margin.

TheOracle6

September 21st, 2010 at 4:19 PM ^

That pie chart is ridiculous.  If Denard continues these numbers there is almost no way he won't win the heisman.  Hopefully Shaw continues to improve in the running game so that we can get Denard some solid rest for the bulk of the Big Ten schedule. 

Nick

September 21st, 2010 at 7:13 PM ^

In all likelihood, Vegas bookmakers don't actually think Michigan is the equal of Iowa and Wisconsin, more likely a small notch below them.  Vegas is aiming to get 1) a lot of money put on the game and 2) relatively even money on both sides in order to cover their own ass.  

Michigan is a name school and when they are good or appear to be good, people bet them.  Michigan's perception (name school, DRob Heisman hype, Rich Rod's coaching history) likely exceeds their their actual quality at this point.  Vegas is adjusting for this.  Michigan also covered the first two spreads of the year and are likely to get more action, especially at home.

I think if you ask any handicapper, they'd say Michigan is slightly over-valued here.

Jamie Mac or more experienced bettors may have a better read on this situation than myself, but that's what i think

Sac Fly

September 21st, 2010 at 8:56 PM ^

.... we are going to see a badgers collapse very soon, without chris borland and a legitimate defensive tackle the wisconsin D is too weak in the middle, if ASU can run on them that easy they're in trouble when they start big ten play.

GoblueNate

September 21st, 2010 at 11:25 PM ^

but after being in attendance for the WI vs ASU game this past weekend, I think we have a better chance at winning than people think.  Borland will be missed, ASU attacked his side of the field and had success off tackle and to the outside.  Also, they are vulnerable to in routes.  It seemed like everytime ASU needed a first down, they ran the slot inside the hashes and it was open for an easy pick-up.  Clay was good, not great, and Wisconsin seemed adamant about getting 20 (White) into the game and trying to get him to the edge...don't know why b/c Clay was eating them up.  Tolzien, and the IOWA Wiscy wide open TE on a rollout was the play that killed ASU (Kendricks was the beneficiary for WI).  Not to sound like a broken record, but if our defense can contain the rush, and find a way to defend a TE drag, I like our offense being able to outscore them. 

M2NASA

September 22nd, 2010 at 3:28 PM ^

Hello, this is Nancy Cantor from Syracuse University.  Mary Sue, remember me?  Illinois, remember me?  Yeah, we're looking to abandon ship from our current sinking ship of a conference.  We have Pitt on the call as well.