November 4th, 2012 at 7:17 PM ^

It's the politically correct thing to do to cover Borgess's ass.  Give me a break, this is a Michigan Blog, most of us are smarter than that.  Just admit that he wasn't prepared to play this season and leave it at that.  Humility seems a bit lacking for Big Al.


November 5th, 2012 at 8:28 AM ^

Of course it's possible to get injured. It's also possible to have not been prepared. It's also possible that the coaches made a mistake by not inserting Gardner after Bellomy threw his 10th incompletion in a row. There are lots of possibities, I just don't buy this "excuse".

NYC Blue

November 4th, 2012 at 7:33 PM ^

Apparently not all of us are quite so smart (response to inthebluelot).

IF Hoke is using an injury to take the heat off of someone, it is not Borges-- even if you think he deserves the heat (debatable), even if Hoke thinks he deserves the heat (doubtful), I am pretty sure Hoke feels Al is a grown man and can deal with the heat himself.

More likely, he would be protecting his player, who is, afterall, still a teenager.  A move which makes me admire Hoke all the more.



November 4th, 2012 at 8:21 PM ^

A question in the post game interview went something like this:  Bellomy barely warmed up for the game, is he injured?

So the fact that he barely warmed up leads us to believe, he really is injured.  Possibly concussed?  

Now the scary part is, if Denard is not ready to go against NWU and Bellomy is still not cleared to play, we have Devin (Who takes a lot of licks) and a walk on back up.   Yikes.  


November 5th, 2012 at 12:07 AM ^

Actually, what was said in the postgame presser was that Bellomy had a "situation."

A reporter followed up and asked Hoke what Bellomy's "situation" was and he said he didn't want to talk about it.  

The fact that he could've simply dismissed it just as easily by saying Bellomy was injure and had a "boo boo," yet he didn't do that, kind of leads me to believe it wasn't injury related.  


November 5th, 2012 at 9:08 AM ^

Denard could have gone.  We need a backup quarterback and a starter for next year and I think we saw about enough of Bellomy to know that he is not it.  I think this was Gardner's audition for second team QB for the remainder of season and starter next year.  It was an impression audition and I think it is safe to say he got the part. 

NYC Blue

November 5th, 2012 at 11:27 AM ^

Well, it depends on what you mean by pressure.  I tend to think that people complaining about Borges on the internet is not pressure. 

Michigan is coming off a remarkably successful season last year, is in line for its second successful recruiting class in a row, has a 5-star QB coming in next year, is still in consideration for the B1G championship, and the "pressure" is coming because when our star QB went down, the backup did not play well.

No, I do not think Al Borges is feeling the pressure.



November 5th, 2012 at 8:22 AM ^

It's the politically correct thing to do to cover Borgess's ass.  Give me a break, this is a Michigan Blog, most of us are smarter than that.  Just admit that he wasn't prepared to play this season and leave it at that.  Humility seems a bit lacking for Big Al. 

Be careful with all that free's frowned upon by the faithful or so I've learned. Al is not on the same level of coaching mastermind as Mattison period. From the very start of the season Gardner should have been the QB and Robinson the wideout. The style of offense Borgess runs is dependent on a drop back pro style qb...Devon is a bit raw around the edges but showed against a mid grade gopher squad...oh sorry, capitalizations are a must Gopher squad that he is a gamer and has skills to pass and run the ball with reasonable success. He's not as flashy as Denard but he fits the offense better.

If Gardner plays against Nebraska it's probably a different outcome, regardless of prep, he's a better athlete/qb than Bellomy. Not bagging on the kid, but there's a reason he was moved to wideout rather than sitting on the bench as the backup, rotating in every now and again to stir things up.

Bottom line, Al has an offensive package that at times resembles the creativity of the great Llllloyd Carr...vanilla with a side of cardboard...oh shit I just ripped on another patron saint of UM lore...oops. I for one couldn't stand the guy but that's me.

Anyways, great game boys, Gardner came through when we needed a win, Bellomy injured or not raises a few questions and coaching concerns like it or not. There's a point of being a fan and being honest with a situation...and being an arrogant choose.

Monocle Smile

November 4th, 2012 at 7:22 PM ^

This staff has never been honest about injuries, and there's no reason they would start now.

This isn't necessarily a criticism, as they're perfectly entitled to tell the media whatever, but it's just an observation.

Section 1

November 4th, 2012 at 7:33 PM ^

The bit about Denard starting last Saturday erases any credibility on the subject of injuries and two-deep rosters.  Complete misinformation.  Now, if the idea is to mislead our opponents and to disrupt their pre-game preparation, or to cover for internal team matters in a way that suits Brady Hoke, so be it.  But I am not going to pretend that what Hoke says means anything anymore.  At least not on the subject of injuries and where players are on the two-deep.


November 4th, 2012 at 8:46 PM ^

If it suits Brady Hoke, it suits Michigan. They are one in the same and he's not worried about anything besides the success of the Michigan team when he speaks. We had our three years of the super coach who had to be everybody's smooth operator and the smartest guy in the room. It was a disaster. 

As an action and results guy, he'd probably caution us to give meaning to the product he is in charge of taking the field and the quality of men who emerge from his program. I doubt he'd care if any of us give any weight to his meanderings to the media about subjects which aren't their business in the first place.

Monocle Smile

November 4th, 2012 at 9:08 PM ^

If it suits Brady Hoke, it suits Michigan. They are one in the same

I'd rather not get into the REAL reason this pisses me off outside of being "one AND the same," but you completely missed the point of Section 1's phrase. Every coach has their way of handling this.

Section 1

November 4th, 2012 at 9:40 PM ^

I didn't say, "shame on Brady Hoke."  All that I asserted was that whatever his reason(s) -- and there could be some strategic/team morale reasons for misleading in the press -- what we now know, from more than one occasion, is that what Brady Hoke says about injuries and players' status is meaningless.  Who knows if it will be true or not?

I'd rather hear Magnus tell me about an unsubstantiated rumor, than read what Brady Hoke says in an interview.  Because Magnus' rumors are far more likely to be informative than Hoke's press conferences.  I'm not poking fun at Magnus.  I'm being quite serious.

I wouldn't make a big deal about it, but for the point that Hoke is thought to be such a great and effective personality in dealing with the press and being the public face of the team.  Meanwhile, Hoke's predecessor, whom I don't ever recall making a deliberately misleading public statement, was thought to be such a tactless rube in being the public face of the team.

Winning has a funny way of making a coach right, I suppose. 

ole luther

November 5th, 2012 at 10:42 AM ^

What's wrong with the Hoke/RR comparisons? We've compared every other coach throughout the years to the one who came before.

RR has won everywhere he's coached, including in Arizona and that will come back to haunt U of M. They will be known as the one place who wouldn't back up a guy who did it by the book, told the truth, and took the heat.

Hoke and all of us enjoyed last year because of RR and you know it.

You people who have an opinion and voice it and then turn around and tell others what they can discuss and shouldn't discuss really need to reexamine yourselves!


November 5th, 2012 at 8:36 AM ^

First if all, why name a starter at all? What's the point? There's no competitive advantage to naming or not naming or even inaccurately naming a starter. There's enough film on Denard that you know what you're going to get. And with the vanilla style that Borgess plays with( that eventually got him fired at Auburn), its not like we were going to fool them for more than a series or two. The game is won or list on player execution, not pregame rosters. Hoke does what's best for Michigan... I agree, I just hope his loyalty to his staff doesn't supersede that like it did with RR and Lloyd.


November 5th, 2012 at 9:50 AM ^

Because you have, by NCAA rules, 20 hours to practice a week. If Minnesota is spending a few extra reps game planning their D for two quarterbacks because Hoke is known to be a lying SOB wrt injuries, it's a competitive advantage. Granted, the difference in our offense isn't that great between Denard and Devin, but still (Not sure they could rule out Bellomy starting either though).


November 4th, 2012 at 7:27 PM ^

There were rumors floating around during the week that Bellomy was injured, so it's not like the coaches just made this up in the last 24 hours.

turd ferguson

November 4th, 2012 at 7:52 PM ^

But it's very possible that they made it up earlier in the week.

One of my favorite characteristics of Hoke (and Carr, for that matter) is his unrelenting public support for his players.  It's very rare that he criticizes one of his player's play in public, and he says a lot of things along the lines of "we have a lot of confidence in... Bellomy / Gibbons / etc."  If the coaches decided that Bellomy isn't ready and Gardner is the better option, then claiming that Bellomy is hurt is a way to give yourself the greatest win probability (Gardner plays) while maintaining that public confidence in Bellomy (who couldn't play b/c "injured" rather than "not good enough").  If Bellomy's not hurt, he obviously knows what's going on, but I'd imagine that message is a lot easier to take privately from your coaches than from your coaches and the entire Michigan fan base.


November 4th, 2012 at 9:20 PM ^

But if Bellomy is not hurt, wouldn't they want to put him in instead of JDK for the last drive? Any time he can have leading the offense, even if it's just giving the ball to a RB, is needed. I don't think Hoke would keep him sidelined in that situation just to save face for Bellomy.


November 4th, 2012 at 7:30 PM ^

Nebraska, at least they should be responsible for not being responsible in preparing the backup QBs in emergence situation. Had Borges used simpler schemes for Bellomy, things might have been different.


November 4th, 2012 at 8:36 PM ^

Personally, I very much doubt that Gardner would have been able to win that game in Lincoln had he been called on even if he had been taking the 2nd string QB reps for weeks. I'm not even sure UM would have won had Denard been healthy the entire game.

Nebraska has shown a propensity for erasing deficits this season (17 to Wisco in Lincoln, 12 in Evanston and 10 in E. Lansing) and UM didn't even have a lead in the game. I think we are just going to have to acknowledge that UN is pretty good this year. They are MUCH better than I thought they were going to be.