Question posed to Rittenberg

Submitted by Paly33 on October 13th, 2010 at 11:32 AM

Its the last question answered in the post. But basically asks Adam if he thinks RR prepares his teams enough for the big rivalry games i.e. State & OSU.....  Along with saying recruiting players from out of state that have no ties to Michigan that may not have a good enough understanding of these rivalrys.

While I disagree that RR doesn't prepare enough for these games, sometimes I find myself wishing he would pull a Tressell "Countdown until we beat Michigan" or Dantonio "Pride before the fall" comment.  I understand that this is not RR's personality and I'm sure he's saying all the right things behind closed doors to the team but shit sometimes I want a little more raw emotion out of him publicly.

I love RR and I'm probably just being a cry baby (which all of you will let me know) but if I have one beef with RR, this would be it I guess.  Any thoughts.......? 



October 13th, 2010 at 8:34 PM ^

doesn't dictate what is true, just what people think. one in 5 Americans think our President is Muslim. it doesn't make it true. a survey quantifies opinions - it doesn't quantify reality. 

similarly, desperately wanting to win will, 9 times out of 10, not be enough to overcome physical/talent limitations. wanting it more often can be the difference when a situation is a push. but let's say Michigan's defense doesn't really let the team, at this time, go into a situation of 'push'


October 13th, 2010 at 11:55 AM ^

RR gets no credit for having beaten Notre Dame twice?  Why?  The announcer at the State game made this same error, saying RR had never won a rivalry game.  In fact, RR has beaten Notre Dame two out of three times, at least once with a weaker team. 


October 13th, 2010 at 11:59 AM ^

I'm not going to say I feel bad for ND, because I never will, but this is two years in a row where new Michigan QBs have beaten them, partially because of a lack of film for them to study.

Phil Davison

October 13th, 2010 at 11:55 AM ^

I think RR prepares them the same way every week. And honestly that's how it should be. There doesn't need to be any special treatment for OSU and MSU (or ND, as well). The players understand the importance of these games without seeing a countdown clock in the locker room. They don't live in a cave, they hear the excitement around campus and in the media leading up to those rivalry games. In my opinion, it should be the coaches job to settle them down, not fire them up. They'll do that on their own as true competitors.


October 13th, 2010 at 12:10 PM ^

Michigan players and NOTHING BUT animosity to go on for decades. Did they beat us? No.

What was frustrating about Saturday, despite what Rittenberg says, is that we DID have the personnel to match them. Maybe we lose without the mistakes, but it's a good, close game. They, however, are the more VETERAN team, and that may have been the diff. 


October 13th, 2010 at 12:27 PM ^

I would submit that part of our problem on Saturday, particularly with Denard's first two interceptions, was playing with too much emotion, trying to force plays that were not there.  Football is a funny game, where being too "up" is as bad as being too flat. 

And, of course, learing to control the "up" comes with experience.  Hopefully we learned from that last week and will be able to play within the system next week.

This is Michigan

October 13th, 2010 at 12:31 PM ^

If anything, some of the UM fans don't understand the rivalary, or at least don't care.

Zero emotion out of some people in my section.

Sitting on their hands during the first couple of series against a rival.


October 13th, 2010 at 12:32 PM ^

Did anyone catch the very last sentence?

A Michigan alum could coach a bunch of homegrown players and if his team wasn't better, he'd probably lose, too.

Wonder who he's talking about?


October 13th, 2010 at 12:33 PM ^

I have other issues with RichRod, but not "getting" the rivalry isn't one of them.  I'm sure that the thunder of complaints that come with each consecutive loss to our lesser rival has made it very clear to him that we need to win that game.  I think a countdown clock is weak.  If anything, let's countdown to a national championship, not a single game against a halfway house with uniforms.

Maybe what RR doesn't grasp is that Dantonio would rather eat his children (alive) than lose to Michigan.  When an opponent is that obsessed, there needs to be a different level of intensity that RR will soon enough bring.  (and this comes from a RR "hater" according to many here)  

Maybe this is a homerish statement to make, but I really think that if Denard didn't throw that first pick...we win that game.  


October 13th, 2010 at 1:00 PM ^

"Maybe what RR doesn't grasp is that Dantonio would rather eat his children (alive) than lose to Michigan.  When an opponent is that obsessed, there needs to be a different level of intensity that RR will soon enough bring."

It's been said before, but part of the reason the Bo lineage of coaches were preferred by so many, is because they already understood, firsthand, the extent to which Michigan has a bullseye tattooed on their backs.  Rodriguez had to learn about the multi-headed rivalry monkey on the job.

That said, I liked RR before the hire, and I still think he's a good enough coach to win here.  Even if, before the game, he had been feverishly staring down players and reporters alike, gerbiling out comments like: "Winner take all!", it still wouldn't have been enough to overcome a bad game by Denard, alligator-armed receivers*, and a sub-par performance by our O-line.

I'll worry that we're losing to our rivals when we're doing it with better teams.  Right now we're just not good enough to play like we did Saturday and beat anyone, let alone an obsessed rival.

*Grady was nails.  I love Roundtree, but him, Hemmingway, and Stonum needed to step up and help their QB out and they looked timid.

M_Born M_Believer

October 13th, 2010 at 1:02 PM ^

dahblue.....I'll take your sentiment another step further.....  Denard does not make his first 2 mistakes (INT to Roundtree and missing Stonum...nothing MSU defense did), we are up 14-0 at the end of the first quarter and 21-7 halfway through the 2nd quarter.  The entire outlook of the game is different.....

MSU won the game, and they deserved to win it, they made plays to win the game.  Sparty fans will refuse to listen to it, but this game was a whole lot closer than what the score indicated.....


October 13th, 2010 at 1:04 PM ^

The bastards played a hell of a game. But it would have changed the first half entirely. The first drive they ran it down the field, multiple players, and passed it into the end zone. Crowd is going crazy. Players operate on momentum too, and at least for the next drive there would have been a bit of a feeling from MSU of "What do we do now"? Score again and things change even more. 

Alas, this young team had other lessons to learn last Saturday.  But in 3 days it's time to play again


October 13th, 2010 at 1:45 PM ^

Actually, that first interception was like two turnovers in one as State got the ball first in the 2nd half (and we all know our D isn't stopping anyone), erasing any advantage we had in first possession.  So, essentially, what would have been 7 points for us, turned into 14 for State.

I think State has a fairly good team, but that's it.  Yes.  They beat us, but they aren't great.  That first pick made a world of difference.


October 13th, 2010 at 12:36 PM ^

Just to address the OP's comment about wishing RR could show more emotion, I agree a bit, but I bet the biggest reason he doesn't is because he knows he can't because, mostly through no fault of his own, he's gotten a bad rep in the last few years and the media (ESPECIALLY the local media) jumps all over literally everything he says and tries to make him out to be a bad guy.  Just think, if he made a Tressell-like promise and then lost, the Freep would go "HURR Rodriguez doesn't deliver on his promises to beat rivals, even though he's cheating by using more practice hours than he should with our SCHOLAR ATHLETES, and maybe he should be making Denard tie his shoelaces because our studies show untied shoelaces lead directly to interceptions and teen pregnancy DERP".  Classic case of damned if you do, damned if you don't, and I really feel bad for the guy.

This is Michigan

October 13th, 2010 at 12:58 PM ^

I heard something about this before and I think I know enough to try and explain. It is nothing new, but the Rose Bowl is in queue to take on non-automatic qualifiers if a team from the Big 10 or Pac 10 were to make he National Championship Game. In other words, The Big 10 or Pac 10 losses its spot in the Rose Bowl if a team from that conference were to make it to the NCG. I believe that this will persist for 3 years until another BCS bowl takes on this role.  


October 13th, 2010 at 1:16 PM ^

How many countdown clocks would Michigan need?  OSU has one; it says, "Michigan."  MSU has one; it says, "Michigan."  Are there any other teams out there that have one countdown clock in their locker room that says, "Michigan?" 

If Michigan started doing the countdown clock thing, they would need at least two and maybe more.  For all we know, Illinois, Purdue, and Minnesota may have clocks.  I like the sentiment of those who think it would help, but we don't need the locker room to look like a Timex factory.

The Harbaughnger

October 13th, 2010 at 2:12 PM ^

I know it's already time to look forward to Iowa, but I saw this on the Big 10 chat with AR today and thought it was humorous.

I cut out the comments in-between to put the relevant ones right next to each other...

AR- "Was it a dominant defensive performance? No. Sorry."

Interesting that a man whose job is to know Big 10 football asks the last guy, "C'mon, why do you all spend so much time itching for credit?"

Everybody sees it but you Sparty.  "You.  Still you.  Always you."

double blue

October 13th, 2010 at 2:37 PM ^

he took tates' wings away!  what more needs to be said!  our helmet is the shining beacon to the world and he defrocked the incumbent qb.   i think that started another more awesome, more important tradition-  you have to earn your wings to fly!!!!


October 13th, 2010 at 2:53 PM ^

... RR needs to recruit more emotional players. Screw size, intelligence, and speed... this staff needs to stop coaching football, get off its collective ass and study the Rivals, ESPN, and Scout charts for players who rank high on EMOTION. Sure, they may lose every other game of the season, but only with highly emotional players does Michigan have a chance to win against rivals like MSU and OSU.


October 13th, 2010 at 4:35 PM ^

While I disagree that RR doesn't prepare enough for these games, sometimes I find myself wishing he would pull a Tressell "Countdown until we beat Michigan" or Dantonio "Pride before the fall" comment. 

I don't remember RR ever doing that for the Notre Dame game, either.  Should we worry that he doesn't understand that rivalry? 


October 13th, 2010 at 5:51 PM ^

RR is desperately trying to prepare his ball club to win every game cause of his past records and expectations that come along with being the coach at Mich. I dont doubt that..i just wish he would show more that this was a huge rivalry game or games, and would show a little more fire ie., Tressel, Dantonio( god i hate him!)


Go Blue!  Beat Iowa!!


October 13th, 2010 at 10:09 PM ^

All Dantonio has to do is beat Michigan and win a few more games and he's set for life in E.Lansing.  RR's task is much greater. Right now I guarantee that beating Sparty is not the main goal, as opposed to Dantonio's main goal.  RR knows he must get Michigan back to a perrenial top-5 team or he won't stay. Rightfully so, RR isn't gonna stand in front of people and lie and say his goals for his team are what Dantonio's are for his. Beating Sparty will hopefully come as second-natured as it used to as soon as RR achieves his bigger goals- taking us to the top again. And I'm behind him.