Our fanbase is truly amazing. (re: Vinopal)

Submitted by Huss on December 4th, 2009 at 6:58 PM

Michigan has always prided itself on being a family. Win or lose, success or failure, both the Michigan fanbase and the Michigan football team always seemed to be sewn together as one entity. We're not unlike any other football fanbase in that regard. When things are good, we're happy. When Michigan loses to Illinois 38-13, you sleep all day with your hands in your pants begging for Alyssa Milano to rape you out of your misery(Well, I do.). That is how things go

However, when I logged in today and saw the latest commit coming from a kid thrown around our recruiting mills for a while now - Ray Vinopal - my immediate reaction was to applaud and welcome this kid to the Michigan family. However, my joy quickly turned to dismay when I saw his listed rankings on each of the guru websites.

2-star, 2-star, #68 ATH

Oh.Fuck. I saw it coming: Immediately perusing the MGoBoard and comments section of the commit article, "fans" were actually jettisoning this kid and praying for an alternate reality where he didn't commit. A great football player from one of the best football powers in the country that our coaching staff wanted is, apparently, Not Good Enough for many a MgoIdiot.

Michigan has been through enough the past 2 or 3 seasons. Our biggest problems, obviously, lie in the lack of depth on defense. The coaches really wanted this kid and(according TomVH's abridged transcript) are excited about him joining our family, and instead of adulation for his commitment to our team, program, and fanbase - he is instead scorned for not being that 4-star black safety we'd like to believe we're due for. Just as Drew Dileo disappointed the shit out of so many people when, fuckbeans, we can get better! We're Michigan!

I really can't bother myself to get that in-depth on the sheer audacity and dickheadedness of so many of you simple-minded ninkumfucks downplaying each and every recruit our coaching staff targets that you don't think is up to snuff, but I just want to assure Mr. Vinopal, Mr. Dileo, Mr. Williamson, and every other kid in this class you guys have hoped would die a fiery recruiting death - there are many out there who value what it means for you to have committed to our favored university. Welcome to the Michigan football family, and may RichRod and co. cultivate you the same way they have cultivated guys like Omameh and Odoms into great football players.

Seacrest. Out.



December 4th, 2009 at 7:03 PM ^

I don't think people realize that high school football players interested in Michigan read these boards as well, to see what the fans are like.

Vinopal will redshirt his freshman year, undoubtedly, and then we'll see where he's at in year 2. Plain and simple.


December 4th, 2009 at 7:15 PM ^

I agree with you - this "looks" like a downer class compared to last years. But at the end of the day, the success of all these kids relies on two things 1) their desire and ability to make it at this level, and 2) the coaches ability to maximize the talent they saw on their HS film. Michigan's last few classes under Carr - all pretty highly ranked - had a long list of failures. The juries still out on RichRod's kids, but the results thus far are promising IME.

James Burrill Angell

December 4th, 2009 at 8:36 PM ^

We BADLY need depth at most of those player's positions (and I see Dileo as a punt returner which we could use) so ordinarily I wouldn't care about carrying this many players who may be termed as "projects". BUT right or wrong (and I do lean to the latter) RR may be on a shortish leash. If he has one or two more years similar to this last one it will be hard for those that handle the hiring and firing of coaches at Michigan to hold off the chorus of howls. In that regard, I'm a little surprised that he didn't go after/leave room for more kids who have the potential to impact faster. Look, in five years DiLeo could break all the punt return records of Steve Breaston and maybe Vinopal becomes our John Lynch. It just seems that the evaluations of several of these guys seems to indicate that they need a few years of collegiate practice/coaching/weight training/growing to reach their potential and we clearly need some guys who can impact right away, especially on defense.

STW P. Brabbs

December 4th, 2009 at 9:44 PM ^

You've found the recipe for success.

"But at the end of the day, the success of all these kids relies on two things 1) their desire and ability to make it at this level, and 2) the coaches ability to maximize the talent they saw on their HS film."

It's just desire, ability, and development - as long as they have those things, they can all be great. If Rodriguez had just applied this concoction to the players already on the roster last year, we almost definitely would have made a bowl game.


December 5th, 2009 at 10:28 AM ^

Since Brian has already made comments that this class, because of 3-9 (and 5-7 didn't help) will suffer in comparison to others. This guy's "meh" comment is completely legitimate to say, even if one disagrees, not sure why it's negworthy.


December 4th, 2009 at 7:52 PM ^

of a specific instance where a high school athlete has come here to judge Michigan? I'm just curious to know if that has happened, if it's common, or if they really just don't know/care about MGoBlog, which I would suspect is probably the case.

They're high school athletes, not fans, and the fact that the fans were so supportive this year at the Big House (in *person* where it matters) is more indicative of Michigan's fan base than a bunch of fans who simply want to take a sledge hammer to their frustrations via online posting.


December 4th, 2009 at 8:56 PM ^

I am fairly confident that most recruits/families look at the MgoBlog community (and to a far greater extent GBW and the other paid recruiting services) as the far right "Area 51" of the overall fanbase. Certainly, few here are representative of the chardonnay and brie crowd that make up the majority of my section.

I suspect that most recruits and their families perceive the "analysis" undertaken by people with odd monikers and interesting bikini clad avatars with a grain of salt and simply are taken by the overall passion evinced by that element of the obsessive end of the fanbase. Fair enough, as a poster on the boards or a reader of the same we all fall into that mix to some degree or another.

Anyway, if you're reading MGoBlog to see what Michigan fans are like I'd say you're getting a very skewed view of the overall picture. The vast majority of fans are hardly as obsessively informed as this group and learn about recruiting in the Freep the first week of February. The nature of the blog enables people to pretty much provide unfiltered content...including irrational complaints.

Anyway, should the family be reading this content I would say welcome to you Ray Vinopal. May you enjoy four years of great success in earning an excellent degree, four Big Ten titles and four National Championships.


December 4th, 2009 at 11:48 PM ^

All of you who want to be so negative about recruits because of their lack of stars: please go and be negative on OSU and MSU boards about their recruits instead. Pretend you are a Buckeye or a Spartan and bitch away.

Then, you will be doing the fanbase and maybe even the program a favor instead of making OSU and MSU fans look like a bunch of judgemental fucks to recruits who may still be in the decision-making process instead of making UM fans look that way.


December 4th, 2009 at 7:08 PM ^

In fairness, I did see several - if not the majority of - posters happy about the kid's commitment. You can't let a few bad apples spoil the bunch (or is it barrel?). Either way, there is going to be some element of "analysis" - positive or negative - that goes into any commit. However, I thought the bulk, not necessarily all, of the comments were positive. And, if he doesn't see much field action, he'll at least be a boost to the team's GPA!


December 4th, 2009 at 11:04 PM ^

If I'm reading posters' feelings right on this commit, I think people are more anxious about the fact we only had three open slots left before 25, and we have a relative unknown that has just taken one of those precious slots. Meanwhile, there are some big names out there, like Furman or Big Tex, that, we all hope, don't get squeezed out. Sounds like the kid is a good athlete who understands the game, and, like Carvin Johnson, probably has more upside than we fans see, but coaches recognize. I'm guessing that, had this commit happened six months ago, when schollies weren't so tight, he'd have been welcomed with many more open arms, and much less angst.

I don't feel too bad about the commit. Maybe there's an understanding between him and the coaches that he comes in and greyshirts for a year, and then has four productive years. If I understand greyshirting, it's one notch above preferred walk-on, in that, they are not on scholarship, but get to work out with the team right away in in summer, instead of having to wait til the season starts in September. Anyone have better clarification on this? From the player's point of view, being able to play at Michigan, and get a Michigan education, is probably preferable to accepting an offer from Bowling Green, etc.

Simi Maquoketa

December 4th, 2009 at 10:42 PM ^

It's funny when fans talk about a recruit at all, based on grainy Zapruder Recruit Film and the opinions of others and OH WAIT! When UM was loading up on higher ranked talent everyone was all YAY! Now, when we get two or three stars that only have offers from MAC schools or no one else, we go into justification

It goes both ways. But for people to assume that the coaches really really want every recruit they get or get every recruit they want is not realistic.

Vinopal is most assuredly one of those Plan B or C guys, and I'll bet even if he reads this post he already knows that and will try his best to show he belongs.


December 4th, 2009 at 7:19 PM ^

The funny thing is, how many of us have seen any of these guys play? Everyone relies on the "gurus" in recruiting, yet, there are so many HS players, how do they make their analysis? On highlight tapes from HS coaches? From watching one game? From word of mouth? I prefer to place my trust in our coaches who maybe have seen these kids at camp; have talked to these kids personally and know their makeup and hopefully, see their competitiveness and ability.

I know I can't judge talent for sh*t even when I watch a game. And I think it's tough for anyone to judge someone based on one game. You might be able to see flashes, but then again you might not. For instance, the ONLY HS game I saw this year was the Inkster/Lowell Michigan championship game on Fox Sports Detroit. I watched it to see Mr. Gardner, of course. If I were to judge Devin Gardner on that one game, I'd say we're in deep trouble at QB in the future because his team scored 6 measly points on a bunch of little white guys (Lowell's nose guard was like 5'6" and weighed 165 pounds - seriously!) and didn't seem to throw the ball well at all. And yet seeing some of the video posted on this board, and hearing the gurus rave about him, I know he's a lot better than what it seemed like in that game.

Basically, what I'm saying is that I don't know anything. Have a nice night.


December 4th, 2009 at 7:40 PM ^

I said this before and I'll say it again - I wish the best for this kid. I hope he takes his opportunity and gives 100% in the practices, workouts, games, etc.

If it doesn't work out, it's not the end of the world. Personally, I believe it won't work out, but the kid still gets a chance to train with Barwis and get that Michigan degree - so congrats to him.

And to all of the people saying "HS kids read this board, don't trash the recruits" - yes that is completely true. But I was in HS once. I can guaran-fucking-tee you that there are tons of higher rated recruits out there saying something to the effect of:

"LOLZ, did you see that scrawny, white, 2 star safety Michigan just offered? LOL, looks like things are on the up-and-up there."

Blue boy johnson

December 4th, 2009 at 7:51 PM ^

There are dumb shits on this board who will bash virtually every White recruit who doesn't play QB or OL. It is sad and disturbing.

I wish recruits came without pictures so I could be spared the ignorance and poor attempt at humor


December 4th, 2009 at 8:12 PM ^

While we're at it:

Did anyone notice that both OSU and PSU have more white starters?

Did anyone notice of the 10 football players who made academic all Big Ten, 8 were white?

How about the two white walk on starters, in place of atheletically better African American players on scholarship?

Sorry -- couldn't help it. Sometimes I wonder whether our recruiting is overlooking white players because they're not African American. And it is a shame if the negative comments against this kid are partially race based.

Hope he comes in and kicks ass!


December 4th, 2009 at 8:29 PM ^

If you can show me that these white players are defensive backs and have enough talent to make it to the NFL, I might start believing in your theory. I can't think of a single white cornerback in the NFL right now, and there aren't many white safeties.

For every Tyler Sash, there are probably 5 black safeties starting in the Big Ten. You can't base everything on race, but skill positions in college football and the NFL are dominated by black players. It's a severely uphill battle for undersized white kids who lack elite talent.