CSG President Says Boycott of PSU Kickoff = Not Supporting Players

Submitted by LS And Play on October 10th, 2014 at 10:54 AM

This morning the University of Michigan student body President sent out an email stating that a boycott of the kickoff for Penn State means we are not supporting the players:

My Fellow Students,

Recently, we have heard a lot of frustration and dissatisfaction with Michigan Athletics and Michigan Football. To address this, CSG has created a survey to gain your feedback on your own Michigan football experiences and how we can make it better. The survey results will be shared with the Athletic Director, Athletic Department, President, Regents, and other administrators to work to create positive change. Please help us by taking this short survey [link to survey redacted per the request of someone close to the CSG - LSA]

Earlier this week a call was made for us to boycott the opening of the Penn State game by waiting outside the gates until after kickoff to create the illusion that the stadium is empty. By not showing up to the opening of the game, all we are doing is hurting the players on the field. Our university has a long standing history of positive activism, a desire to create change that will benefit students, not harm our peers. To disregard the work of the athletes would be detrimental not only for the players themselves, but for the image of the university as a whole. Now, more than ever, we need to stand by blue. Share your support for the team by using #StandByBlue.

Go Blue!

Bobby Dishell
Student Body President
Central Student Government

As usual, Support the Troops is not an argument. We all support the players. We don't support the administration and the coaching staff. It's not a difficult concept to grasp. Everyone should do what they like. If you boycott, fine. If not, fine.





Bando Calrissian

October 10th, 2014 at 10:58 AM ^

To reiterate, I would really like to hear some concrete reasons why an empty student section at kickoff will "hurt the players."

I'm indifferent to the idea of a boycott, FTR, but if you're going to oppose it, at least give reasons that actually make sense.


October 10th, 2014 at 11:06 AM ^

There were plenty of empty seats when that happened. How can you not recognize an empty student section at the very least making the players feel bad? Playing games at Michigan Stadium is a culmination of many of these kid's football careers. To run out of the tunnel to a mostly empty student section would be very demoralizing. Everyone knows people aren't happy with the AD and the coach. Despite that these players are going to keep trying to win games and for that they deserve support and people in the seats.


October 10th, 2014 at 3:59 PM ^

This is a great point. There are plenty of student-athletes working just as hard and just as worthy of support. But watching soccer or field hockey doesn't require a $100 ticket. Maybe we should just spread our support around a bit more - sends the same message to Brandon, namely "we're done being monetized".

Anyway, there's a difference between choosing to leave your already paid for seat empty and choosing not to buy tix in the first place. I suspect a lot of empty seats are going to be of the latter variety.


October 10th, 2014 at 12:00 PM ^

Everyone knows people aren't happy with the AD and the coach.

I suspect many folks here can't make that assumption.  On what basis do you make it?  Based on comments on this blog, which represent a small and vocal portion of the fanbase?  There certainly hasn't been any action resulting from said unhappiness (unless you count shameless attempts by the AD to hide behind student-athletes and pit them against the fanbase).

Call me a pessimist, but until the AD is gone, I put no stock in "unhappiness."  Like others have said, change sometimes requires unpleasant choices and collateral damage.

Bando Calrissian

October 10th, 2014 at 11:16 AM ^

If there's anything we've learned about concussions and contact sports like football and hockey in the last five years, it's that the responsibility has universally shifted from players to coaches and medical staff when it comes to deciding when (or rather, if) you should be allowed to participate after a hit like the one Shane received. Players will always want to play--but it's not their decision when it comes to possible head injuries.

Arizona Blue

October 10th, 2014 at 1:33 PM ^

That is absolutley ludicrous to not put any of the blame on the players (it falls on both shoulders). But that is beside the point. The boycott has nothing to do with Shane's "probably concusion". The boycott has everything to do with our terrible team and our incompetant staff. The "shane gate" arguement is a Red Herring. Nothing more. an isolated incident (coaching playing hurt player) that people are blowing up in order to leverage the university into reactionary and radical action. Mid-season. Lets be real, if anything, i would accuse the staff of running a country club and not having players tought it out before i accuse them of putting injured kids in harms way


October 10th, 2014 at 12:59 PM ^

Yeah because as football players we try to stay in the game as long as we can. Football players have the "You're going to have to drag me off this field" mentaility.

Every player in the naiton would have tried to stay in, that's why our staff failed.  They needed take him out of the game and they didn't.

Also, LOL at pinning this on Shane Morris.


October 10th, 2014 at 11:28 AM ^

Actually, it is far more simpleminded to think that the only way to protest or make one's feelings known about the AD is to boycott the kickoff.  It's like you guys are making it some litmus test of manhood or something.

I mean, people on this board are actually attacking former Michigan players for wanting to show support for the team. Has it occurred to you that they understand what it's like to be this situation far more than a bunch of angry, entitled people who complain on the internet?

It's really so simple. Nobody wants to win more than those guys on the field. Nobdy hurts more when they lose.  And, many of them have said they want the fans there showing support. Instead, we get these silly rationalizations that participating in the boycott is somehow seeing the bigger picture, that it is supporting the players by getting regime change in the AD.


October 10th, 2014 at 12:03 PM ^

I disagree with your suggestion that 

Nobody wants to win more than those guys on the field

Devin Funchess sums it up for us

"Wins and losses, that’s just a statistic.” And then when asked if U-M needs a win against Penn State: “We’re just going to go out there and do our best. It’s not that we need something; we’re blessed to play.” 

To me, that doesn't sound like someone all-too-concerned about winning football games.  And he's one of the biggest stars on our offense.  Sure, maybe one person's quote doesn't sum up the thoughts of 115 players but damn that is alarming that this is his mindset.  Perhaps I am missing context as well that would make it less shocking.


October 10th, 2014 at 12:57 PM ^

I love all the ideas that you have offered up to effect change in the Athletics department..  I can't believe that they won't work better than a couple play boycott. 


I support change with no boycott, I support change with no dismal records, I support change with no free tickets for coke, I support change with no concussed players playing for my team.  Unfortunately no change is happening.  Some people have come up with a way that will fully demonstrate their displeasure.  If someone had offered up another idea that would "hurt the players" less, i am sure it would have been considered.  Since nobody has and the University has done NOTHING to address the concerns of the masses...  so...   you will have some people demonstrating.  And in my opinion, good for them. 


You Only Live Twice

October 10th, 2014 at 1:04 PM ^

You pretty much hit the nail on the head.  Internet bravery is the easiest kind and really, even an empty student section will not result in a new AD otherwise we'd have had 20 new ADs by now.  The "importance" of this boycott is getting blown out of proportion.   Now, who would be really happy by us having a divided fan base?  PSU fans.  MSU fans.  OSU fans.  


October 10th, 2014 at 2:17 PM ^

because our team sucks, our coach is incompetent, and the entire program is held hostage by a megalomaniac who is more interested in his personal agenda than in putting a winning product on the field. 

I know fans from other fanbases. They are having the time of their life celebrating the self-imposed sanctions we have levied on ourselves through the regime of Brandon and Hoke. 


October 10th, 2014 at 11:51 AM ^

Yeah who cares if we're doing a horrible job of deploying them under questionable circumstances and our actions are seemingly making it worse for them. If you don't ignore everything that would normally be paid attention to an an analytical process and you don't unquestionably support horse shit policy that is bad for the troops and the actual cause they serve then you definitly are bad for not supporting the troops.


October 10th, 2014 at 6:24 PM ^

That's the genius of the boycott.  Even if practically no one is boycotting, it will still look like a boycott.  It's sort of like if that one uncle who always shows up to family functions drunk and says inappropriate things telling the family he's going to protest Thanksgiving dinner by showing up drunk and saying inappropriate things.


October 10th, 2014 at 1:38 PM ^


It will hurt the players. Some have already told us so. Whether it should or not is another issue. But they want our support, and a boycott is not support.

Also, whether you believe is hurts the players or not, I dont see how anyone could think it was hurting anyone else. You still paid for tickets. They will still count you as in attendance. You will, in fact, be at the game. It wont hurt the AD or the school at all. It can only hurt the team.

If you want to boycott, then go all-out. Dont buy tickets, dont show up. That would send a message.


October 10th, 2014 at 1:58 PM ^

"If you want to boycott, then go all-out. Dont buy tickets, dont show up. That would send a message."

I did that.  So did a bunch of other people apparently based on ticket availability.  Yet nothing whatsoever changed.  So maybe that message wasnt heard - yet.  Maybe it will take the emarrassment of a half-empty student section for people in a position to DO something about it to take action.

Even if for a brief moment it makes the players unhappy.


October 10th, 2014 at 11:06 AM ^

"...even if nobody else is" - former Michigan players, per Desmond Howard.

Interesting to see how those protesting are being fingered (no pun intended) as compounding the issue as opposed to attempting to effect change.


October 10th, 2014 at 3:05 PM ^

The photo itself is very cool, but just don't post it about 15-20 times as a thread in the span of about 20 minutes. That took about twice as long to clean up. Otherwise, it's a very nice "kitten in a cup" photo, perhaps even the best one that appeared in the now-famous thread as it is a real live situation.