Olin Buchanan is a fool - updated!

Submitted by pasadenablue on June 24th, 2009 at 3:46 AM

So I saw this article: http://collegefootball.rivals.com/content.asp?CID=957359&PT=4&PR=2, on yahoo sports the other day. I noticed a nice picture of Charlie the Hutt there, and Mr. Buchanan was praising the domers for not scheduling a 1-AA (yeah I'm old-fashioned) team. So at once I thought, Notre Dame might not play a 1-AA team, but with the exception of a few games, their schedule is pretty soft. So I did some research, and typed the following response to Mr. Buchanan:

"Ah yes, stalwart Notre Dame, never scheduling a 1-AA team. They only play such powerhouses as Purdue, San Diego State, Washington, Syracuse, and Stanford. Those teams were a combined 14-46. And true, they did play a couple of decent teams and regular power programs, the overall W-L of their opponents was 79-86. Number of wins against teams with a +.500 record: 1, at Navy. Had it not been for the patsies on their schedule, Notre Dame wouldn't have come close to making a bowl game. Just remember that the domers don't need to schedule 1-AA opponents because their schedule is already chock full of cupcakes."

On the submission form, it has one list their name, city, email, and, most importantly, favorite college football team. Even though I had a gut feeling that it might look bad and corrupt the message, I decided to be honest and type in Michigan.

I checked my email today, and this is what I saw:

"Didn’t Michigan play Miami, Ohio (2-10), Toledo (3-9), Purdue (4-8) and Illinois (5-7)? Those teams were a combined 14-34. And by the way, didn’t Notre Dame destroy Michigan? Just because the cupcakes are in conference play doesn’t mean they’re not cupcakes."

Strange! Not a word about Notre Dame's weak schedule! Nothing but him trying to distract me from my original argument. Never once did I say that Michigan played a strong schedule last year (though they did - SOS was top 30 by most metrics I believe, definitely all greater than ND). Yet all he talks about is Michigan. Yes, Michigan had a tough year last year, yes we lost to ND, and yes we played those teams. But how come he didn't list the rest of Michigan's schedule (like I did with ND). Let's see, there's Utah (13-0), ND (7-6), Wisconsin (7-6), Penn State (11-2), MSU (9-4), Minnesota(7-6), Northwestern (9-4), and OSU (10-3). That's 8 bowl teams combining for 73-31. Including the weaker third of Michigan's schedule, you have a total of 87-65 (ND's opponents played more games because ND played Hawaii in their bowl game). All in all, it's a cowardly and bitter response from someone who's original argument has had a hole poked in it.

I sent him back an email stating such:

"While you've stated true facts in your email, it doesnt change the fact that you've been lauding Notre Dame for scheduling "tough, non 1-AA" opponents. All you've done is point out weaknesses of my team over the past year, not address the faultiness of your own arguments. Instead of trying to come with clever ways to protect your own arguments, how about you address the facts?"

At this point in time, I'm not sure what to expect from him. Maybe he'll send a gracious apology back, realizing that he got caught in the act. Maybe he'll send more diversionary emails. Maybe he'll resort to ad hominem attacks. He probably won't respond at all (it's the easiest way to duck out of a difficult situation).

I'll be honest, I'm a Michigan homer. Previous diary posts will show that. However, I also present facts to back up what I say. And while I may have a conflict of interest when I criticize schools like ND and USC (see my last diary post), it doesn't mean that I am wrong.

What do you all think? Thoughts? Comments? Rebuttals?

Update! As of 12:40 PM (CST). A new email for Buchanan

New email is as follows:

"I did not just laud ND. I applaud any team – Tennessee, USC, UCLA, etc. that did not schedule schedule FCS opponents.

I just thought it was ironic that you were ripping ND for its weak schedule, while your team’s schedule wasn’t much different. And I think pointing that out is rather clever."

Notice in my original emails, I didn't say anything about the other teams. There's a reason for that - because for the most part he was right about those other teams. While I really dislike USC, I respect them for playing a tough non-conference schedule. Also notice that he still hasn't addressed the original point about Notre Dame.

Thus, my response:

It might be ironic, but it doesn't change the fact that your original argument was wrong. It was a clever distraction, but it was nothing more than that - a distraction. I never mentioned the other teams, because there was no need to criticize you on them - you were right about them. However, Notre Dame doesn't deserve the same veneration. You still have not addressed the original point that I brought up, and at this point. The only reason I can think of for that behavior is that you know that your original point (about ND) was weak, and you're trying to throw up a smokescreen to distract me. It won't work.

I wonder how differently that email would have been received if I'd said that I was a Utah or a Tennessee fan. While I am a Michigan fan, I am making these observations as a college football enthusiast. I wonder if he realizes this.

End update

Also, for reference, link to comment on the article linked above: http://collegefootball.rivals.com/drawform.asp?form=943
Olin Buchanan's email address: [email protected].

Also (way OT), what the heck are mgopoints for?



June 24th, 2009 at 6:27 AM ^

what Olin Buchanan thinks?

Notre Dame went 7-6 last year. Big deal. But he has the right point - Notre Dame should be lauded, and we should be criticized, for playing I-AA teams. Anything beyond that point is surplusage.


June 24th, 2009 at 8:19 AM ^

I'm guessing Notre Dame scheduled those teams a few years in advance. It's not like they saw a winless Washington team and decided to schedule them as a cupcake game. Notre Dame should be praised.

Terminate Carr

June 24th, 2009 at 8:29 AM ^

Who the fuck is Olin Buchanan and why would you waste any energy sending him an email.

You would have been better served writing a diary entry about your orgasms.

Big Boutros

June 24th, 2009 at 10:10 AM ^

To answer your question, you gain mgopoints when you post something: 10 points for a diary entry, 2 points for starting a forum topic, 1 point for a response. You can redeem your mgopoints for prizes at the boardwalk in Ocean City. 10 is a used condom, 50 is a pencil sharpener, 100 is one stick of bubble gum, 200 is a slap bracelet. And naturally you can't get the DVD player until you get 2,000,000. Who the hell plays that much skiball posts that often?


June 24th, 2009 at 10:54 AM ^

I saw your post and couldn't help but write him...

Me --> Notre Dame does not have a tough schedule and therefore should not be praised for who they don't schedule. Also, top end D1AA teams are better than some of the D1A cream puffs on ND's schedule. This is a fact. Please stop praising Notre Dame for nothing. If you want to praise Notre Dame's schedule, praise them for only scheduling Navy, instead of the entire service academy trifecta. Word is that ND was looking into whether the Coast Guard had a team they could beat up.

Him --> Notre Dame was never praised for its schedule. It was just pointed out that Notre Dame was one of the teams that has not played an FCS opponent. By the way, Navy has been pretty good lately. Maybe you haven’t noticed.

Me --> If Navy has been "pretty good lately," what is their best accomplishment? Needing Weis to make pathetic mistakes to beat a 3-9 ND team in 2007? Is that what made them "pretty good" in your estimation. The last time Navy beat a team with less than 5 losses on the season, was in 2007 against a 4 loss Air Force team. The previous time that Navy beat a team with less than 5 losses on a year was 1993 against a 6-3-2 Bowling Green State team.

So you think a team that has a combined 2 wins over teams with less than 5 losses on the year since 1990 is doing "pretty good lately".

Let me guess you think about 90 of the D1A teams are doing pretty good lately?

Don't get me wrong, God bless those boys hearts for being in the Navy, but I won't lie and claim they are pretty good at football and Notre Dame should be praised for eternally scheduling a team that they lose to once in a lifetime.


June 24th, 2009 at 11:53 AM ^

This is why we play Navy, this is why we will always play Navy.

"As a private institution, Notre Dame might have had to close its doors during the war without sufficient capital, but the United States Navy came to the rescue by making the Notre Dame campus one of the sites of its V-12 officers’ training program. On July 1, 1943 at Notre Dame, the largest V-12 program in the United States was launched with 1,851 Navy trainees.

Notre Dame president emeritus Rev. Theodore Hesburgh has stated Our Lady’s school is eternally indebted to Navy for literally keeping Her afloat – and that is why the series with the Naval Academy will never stop, unless the Navy itself wants it to cease."


June 24th, 2009 at 12:35 PM ^

Alright so you clicked on this article because there was a picture of Charlie Weis in it? That was your first mistake, being as you said a UM "homer". What were you hoping for with the title, "Mailbag: Teams take advantage of little guys" and UM's upcoming schedule and past experiences

Then you said in your original response to him "Had it not been for the patsies on their schedule, Notre Dame wouldn't have come close to making a bowl game. Just remember that the domers don't need to schedule 1-AA opponents because their schedule is already chock full of cupcakes." There are no facts in this, ND played who they played. There is no way you can say ND would have lost or won more games with a tougher schedule because that is the schedule we had. You can define a cupcake how ever you want but if SDSU is a cupcake then what is Delaware State a sprinkle?

His response is essentially saying to you "people in glass houses shouldn't throw rocks" which is pretty valid to an extent, that you really aren't in a position to complain. Just so that you will feel better since you seem to be pretty mad about all this, our AD is trying to schedule future games with the following teams: Miami, Wisconsin (replace Purdue), Texas, Alabama and Boise State. Because he, like most irish fans, is not at all comfortable with the current schedule's strength.

So you should feel good, hopefully no one should have to worry about ND's SOS in the future with those potential match-ups. I know I have my fingers crossed, and by the sound of it I am sure you do to.


June 24th, 2009 at 10:16 PM ^

OP was about how a member of national media praised ND for one aspect of scheduling and how he called this writer out for ignoring the larger issue of total strength of schedule, the writer simply sidestepped the issue attacking UoM's schedule and Charlie Weis is overweight.


June 24th, 2009 at 11:50 AM ^

After "The Horror" our only response to 1-AA scheduling criticisms can only and forever be..."But some of those teams are really, really good and they can be really, really hard to beat. You know, you can actually get beat by a 1-AA team. Those games are never a given. You can't take them for granted, you know. You just can't..."


June 24th, 2009 at 1:15 PM ^

people respond to weakness in arguments by making fun of something that had nothing to do with the point. It's a sign of a strong...i mean, weak? argument.


June 24th, 2009 at 2:45 PM ^

I'm rather perplexed how he failed to mention that it wasn't M's fault to have Illinois and Purdue on the schedule but somehow have 13-0 Utah non-conference plus pasty-bowl bound ND.


July 4th, 2009 at 2:54 PM ^

He sent me a few more emails after those mentioned here. I didn't bother responding because it was breaking my rule of arguing over the internets.

I knew my point that Notre Dame had a weak schedule regardless of what Michigan had done wouldn't get through, even if I clobbered the idiot with a golf club. It seemed like arguing with this guy: http://www.oregonlive.com/clackamascounty/index.ssf/2009/07/jury_hears_….

So I let it go. I just know I won't be clicking on his columns or mailbags anymore.