Rich Rodriguez Poll

Submitted by mrlmichael on August 15th, 2010 at 5:36 PM

Sorry if this has been done before. I was having a conversation with someone today who firmly believes most Michigan Fans want Rich Rodriguez to be fired. I argued that I believe the exact opposite. So I just wanted to create a poll, and ask a place I know is pretty much all Michigan football fans. You can vote in the poll by clicking the link:

Sorry if there is a way to actually post this in the forum without making an outside link, I couldn't figure out how.



August 15th, 2010 at 5:41 PM ^

You posted this just a few minutes ago.  I took the bait, voted (in favor of RichRod), and noticed that there were already six votes (to my one) in favor of ditching him.  Where else did you advertise this?


August 15th, 2010 at 5:44 PM ^

I didnt advertise it to anyone else but here. Maybe the site I used lets other people search for polls they want to take, im not sure. Or maybe theres more people that dont like RR on mgoblog then I thought.

Edit: Now all of the sudden there are a ton of people voting yes. Spoke too soon I guess.


August 15th, 2010 at 5:41 PM ^

While I applaud your effort, I don't necessarily think that your poll will necesarily capture the full fanbase.  What I have found is that the younger fans tend to support RR, whereas the older fans tend not to.  Obviously, this is not an absolute, but I think that this divide exists.  Your survey - being internet based, is skewed to the younger fans. 

That said, I would be curious sas to the results.


August 15th, 2010 at 7:07 PM ^

I think the problem with sampling the MGoBlogosphere is that you're looking, largely, at an informed Michigan fan vs. the unruly mass informed only by the local media (that paper in Detroit, the radio etc. and/or ESPN etc.). The most informed fans from this blog can, likely, see the progress (shoelace, DG, defence excepting corner retention etc.) but the old school...not so much. It is my opinion that the brie and chardonnay crowd, weaned on Lloyd's 75 percent win rate, 3 yards and a cloud of dust etc. hate RR and would want to see him fired...but...they can't read the internets.


August 15th, 2010 at 7:11 PM ^

I'm thinking for the purpose of this poll it is better to have well informed Michigan fans like the ones on this site. I think the opinion of the guy who goes "well we won more games with Lloyd Carr than we have so far with Rich Rodriguez so therefor Rich Rodriguez most suck" does not hold much water in this kind of discussion.


August 16th, 2010 at 12:28 AM ^

My parents are both alumnae and are pretty active with other alumnae that vary in age range from 60 on up. They support RR pretty heartily, as do a lot of their friends, although that might have to do with me giving them my opinion and asking them to look into it a little further (sometimes pointing them to this blog). My mom provided me with some insight when she told me that the few people she knows that don't support him are mostly those that are sometimes a little 'too' invested in being the 'Big M', the kind that typically liked to stick it to their MSU fans when M won (my parents live in E.L.). Theese people are eating some generous helpings of humble pie from MSU and OSU fans these days and they are not happy about it. Grousing and whining that the coach should be fired isn't how I handle it, but everyone does things differently.


August 15th, 2010 at 5:46 PM ^

I voted for him not to be coach. It's a dumb internet poll that has just about zero reliability (as referenced by michgoblue). Just tell your friend that Valenti is not a Michigan fan, nor remotely representative of Michigan fans at all.


August 15th, 2010 at 5:48 PM ^

To be fair posting this link here and asking people to vote on it is a bit like going to a John Birch Society Luncheon and passing around a poll about Ronald Reagan.

Section 1

August 15th, 2010 at 7:37 PM ^

of registered voters or anything like it.

The question posed, as I understand it, is how Michigan fans feel about their head coach. 

Actually, I'd sort of like an internet poll that somehow made sure that no one but Michigan Alumni, students, Victors and Presidents Club members, season ticket holders, etc. could vote.

Because the sportswriters' favorite meme has been that "there is much dissatisfaction among the Michigan fan base with Rich Rodriguez."  If that's the question, there's a certain demographic to be asked.  Not just everybody.

I'll put your deliberately provocative post another way -- If you want to know how the John Birch Society feels about its leader, you should definitely poll the John Birch Society.

Here's a very big problem with this poll -- anybody can vote, as far as I can tell.  So somebody can post this link on Black Shoe Diaries, or Buckeye Battle Cry, or Spartan Spamcan, or whatever.  And the trolls can have a field day.  It wil be Troll Day, and then we'll have the Free Press or WDFN tomorrow reporting that an internet poll showed a shocking XX% (you fill in the numbers) who don't feel that RR should be our coach.


August 15th, 2010 at 7:44 PM ^

I wish we could somehow get a poll of everyone who is a real Michigan fan. I agree that if this link goes into the hands of MSU or OSU fans the numbers will get skewed. Thats why I posted it here first and have been tracking the results closely. For instance at 300 votes it was:

271 Yes(90.33%)

29 No(9.67%)

By doing it that way, if there is a sudden leap in no votes from the original trend you can pretty much bet the link found its way to an opposing fan bases message board or blog.

Currently it sits at after 428 votes:

Yes 375 (87.62)

No 53 (12.38%)

Section 1

August 15th, 2010 at 10:22 PM ^

Using small words and short declarative sentences.

If the question is, "How does the Michigan fan base feel about Rich Rodriguez?", then yes you would want to limit such a "poll" to "the Michigan fan base."  Now, you can craft the definition of "Michigan fan base" any way you want.  Include yourself if you'd like.  I just threw out some general parameters.  So sorry I left you out.  But alumni, students, boosters, and season ticket holders seemed to me to be a fairly good representatives of "the Michigan fan base."  At least good enough for a poll sampling.

Let's take this example:  If you wanted to poll Detroiters how they felt about their current mayor, because some people (in the media?) were asserting that "Many Detroiters have lost confidence in their mayor", you wouldn't conduct a phone poll that included Grand Rapids and Traverse City.  And if you were using the internet to conduct that poll (you probably wouldn't want to do that, just as I have my doubts about this poll), you would want to try to limit the poll to "Detroiters."

I don't think the question here is "How does everybody feel about Rich Rodriguez?"  For my part, I care less than nothing about how the public at large, including Free Press readers, people in East Lansing, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Iowa, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Florida, Georgia and West Virginia all feel about Rich Rodriguez's tenure at Michigan.  I don't even care enough about public polling to try to poll Michigan fans.  But that's just me.  If someone wants to try to poll Michigan fans, good luck.  I have my doubts that any internet poll will produce a good result.


August 16th, 2010 at 1:15 PM ^

FWIW me thinks your sentences are still to big, I mean large... You know what I mean.

Let's take this example:  If you wanted to poll Detroiters how they felt about their current mayor, because some people (in the media?) were asserting that "Many Detroiters have lost confidence in their mayor", you wouldn't conduct a phone poll that included Grand Rapids and Traverse City.  And if you were using the internet to conduct that poll (you probably wouldn't want to do that, just as I have my doubts about this poll), you would want to try to limit the poll to "Detroiters."


August 15th, 2010 at 5:48 PM ^

Yeah, this isn't the place to find out the true ratio. Pretty much everyone that thinks RR shouldn't be our coach is is shut down here. I still think it'd be 70-30 or so in favor of him being our coach now. But a lot of people are kind of on the fence right now. If he doesn't win 7-8 games this year, those numbers will flip around.


August 15th, 2010 at 5:50 PM ^

True, I just can't think of a better place to do it. If I do Mlive or something like that, there will be a ton of troll OSU and MSU fans who will skew the voting. This was the only place I could think of where the troll population is somewhat low and everyone that reads the board is pretty much a Michigan fan.


August 15th, 2010 at 5:48 PM ^

The reason people have a bad opinion of Rich is because of the media. I could really not give a fuck if the public has a salty opinion of him. Their opinion was based on rumors, not by knowing the man. All the kids who come to Michigan and meet the man are always suprised on how genuine he is. Don't believe the jihad hype. It sucks that our own fans are being brain-washed by what the freep scum bags are preaching.


August 15th, 2010 at 9:21 PM ^

Yup, sounds like a thing Sparty would think.  They're not even worth the effort IME.  They believe M fans want RR gone because they wish it were true - that way they can convince themselves that U-M won't get rid of him and we're all drowning in our own misery because of it.  Nothing makes Sparty happier than Michigan's misery.


August 15th, 2010 at 5:59 PM ^

The poll needs more options.  I believe Rich Rodriguez should be the head coach of the Michigan football team IF they continue to reject my applications.  As it is now, I had to vote no.


August 15th, 2010 at 6:01 PM ^

as of 4:59 the poll stand at 89.25 yes for RR and 10.xx no.  I won't comment on the reliability or the validity of such polls.  But the yes side is winning with 93 total votes cast. and there's no hanging chad


August 15th, 2010 at 6:02 PM ^

I voted for RR and its 24 to 3 (89%) in favor of keeping RR. As far as the age theory, I have been at UM games since 1959. Other than a basic training in the fall of 1963 for the Air Guard, I have only missed 6 games. I said that it would take 5 years to turn the program around when RR took over. He took over one big mess with little talent.

I live in Toledo and still have to listen to tongue wagging of the clown school in Columbus fans about the losses to Appalachian State and then Toledo. Carr left the team with only one QB in the stable.

For those who want RR out be careful what you wish for. Remember there were a lot of people in this country that wanted "change" 2 years ago and look at what we got.


August 15th, 2010 at 6:10 PM ^

I just want Michigan to win.  For the record, I'm a strong RR supporter and really believe he's going to lead us to the promise land.  But, I think people just want michigan to win.


August 15th, 2010 at 6:53 PM ^

I vote yes.

I think we all want Michigan to win, and I support RichRod as long as he is able to make that happen this year.  To my way of thinking, that is at least a 7-5 season, maybe.  I suspect, as do many of us, that RichRod is on a very short lease.  Brandon's commitment is for this year; anything beyond that is a function of our performance and Rodriguez keeping his nose clean. 

As long as we are on the subject of RichRod, I am also firmly convinced that what transpired at the beginning of his hire need not have occurred.  Michigan played a game with damages owed to West Virginia and the press played the story to its fullest once the law suit was filed. The check should have been written immediately.  I'd bet that with Brandon at the helm things would have happened much more cleanly.  The hire should have also taken place on January 2, not when it did, as it produced nothing but  a bad press, recruiting notwithstanding. Doing what Rodriguez and Brian Kelly did is inexcusable in my book and lowered my estimate of both coaches.

As an older alum who participates in this forum I believe that it would set us back if RichRod is fired.  Frankly, if this is another lousy year or if there are more "issues", I believe Harbaugh will be our new coach.


August 16th, 2010 at 12:47 AM ^

I'm not sure the coaches had a choice in how things went down.

Typically, in hiring situations llike that, it is full speed ahead and things get cued up in terms of PR and announcements and such and it is nearly impossible to keep that a secret. If it was just RR coming to ann Arbor and interviewing then deciding, maybe, but there is a whole team of people involved in a coaching search, teams of people on the coaches side that asess the oportunity and all the people who work in the offices for those teams of people. It is hard to keep a lid on it and I think it is generally accepted as standard operating procedure in a high profile hire at a high profile program. If RR or Kelly said, 'yes, but don't tell anyone until....' I think it creates more problems thyan it avoids.

As for the check being written immediately, again I would posit that with $2 million on the line, it is very common to at least take it to the discovery stage legally to determine what cards are being held by the various parties and to assess the chances of getting it reduced in court and to weigh that against the cost of litigation. It is a business decision and just writing big checks where there may be the opportunity to not write a big check, you have to throw a few chips and the table and see who bets. At any rate, I don't think that was entirely RR's decision either. 


August 16th, 2010 at 9:42 AM ^

hey mtzlblk

I didn't mean to suggest that the process of obtaining a coach needed to be done secretly, as I think these days that is largely impossible. My point was that coaches shouldn't be allowed to leave a team mid-season, or in this case, between the last regularly scheduled game and a BCS or any bowl game (which was also the case with Brian Kelly).  It is neither fair to the players nor does it do anything except harbor even more ill will than necessary from the fans of the university the coach came from.  If a player leaves an institution at the end of the season, except in the rarest of instances, he/she is forced to sit out a year.  Yet, a coach is not held to the same standard.

Regarding the $2 million check, I do appreciate, as an attorney, what transpired - at least I think I do.  Michigan gambled, in part because of the Beilein precedent and from some of what Rodriguez told U of M officials,namely, that damages from the breach of contract might be mitigated or avoided in its entirety due to promises made but not kept at WVU.  I read all of the pleading and discovery in that case, as did the press.  It was one of the lead stories in the sports world for months.  The matter was settled just before Mary Sue Coleman was due to be deposed.  The was no way Mary Sue was going to do anything but tell the truth under oath and, quite frankly, being in the middle of the discovery process for a coach's hiring was not a place Coleman should have been in the first place.  So, the gamble didn't pay off, but Rodriguez and the University paid a price.  You may also remember that at least one, or possibly more cases were filed naming Rodriguez as a defendant where his only role was either as a guarantor or a lender.  By themselves, these cases were of little import, but along with the breach of contract action, an ugly picture was painted which, I also believe, was the root of many of the evils that have surrounded Michigan football since Rodriguez was hired.

RichRod was initially painted in a bad light through no fault of his own.  I believe some of the enmity/ill will felt by older alums originated from the contract dispute.  I also believe that at least in part, the loathsome actions of Snyder and Rosenberg and the NCAA mess may have had their genesis in the contract dispute.  So was it worth it to gamble on not writing the check?  Hindsight is of course 20/20, but I know that I and many alum friends felt "back then" that Michigan was making a big mistake.  I believe that had Dave Brandon been at the helm of the athletic ship, this scenario would not have played out as it did.


August 16th, 2010 at 10:53 AM ^

I have to admit, I don't think coaches leaving mid-season or prior to a bowl game is the best path to take and should be something that is prohibited, but it is another example of where the business end of things trumps what should be more important and that is the best interest of the players. They treat it more like a standard business process where an executive is leaving a company than a coach who has been a mentor (in most cases anyway, one would hope) to some young men.

I would also wholeheartedly agree that in hindsight it was not a good decision to take any steps toward trying to get out of or reduce the amount of RR's buyout, at very least they should have made it MUCH more clear that the U was assuming control of that process in order to free Rich up to coach and to hold him blameless in a PR sense foor the fallout. From what I read of the matter (some, not all, of the discovery outcome) it seemed like there would have been grounds to reduce the buyout for breach of contract, but nearly all of the basis for that was heresay, so that it would have been difficult if not impossible to prove. Without solid evidence, my guess is that they didn't have enough to warrant proceeding to trial as they would spend more on lititigating it than they would gain through reduction of the buyout amount. My company actually had a pretty similar situation with the MLB a few years back, where we were definitely in the right, but because it dealt with the vagueries (at that time, much less accurate) of location based services on mobile phones, we couldn't materially prove they were making mis-representations about the accuracy and therefore could not proceed and seek damages.

The most troubling part for me, is that this all seems to be a function of 8-16. That is to say, had he been 16-8 instead, that many M fans that now view these as egregious transgressions and point to them as evidence of flaws in his character, would not. It does not speak well as to the objectivity of a large part of our fanbase.


August 16th, 2010 at 3:51 PM ^

I agree with you completely regarding 8-16 and its impact on just about everything.  Last year, after the 4-0 start, Richrod looked like a hero and the only thing that mattered was the game. Had we had a winning season, the NCAA mess would have played out exactly as it did, but its impact, particularly on the Michigan fan base, would have been softened. While I speculate here, winning a few more games would have improved recruiting also.

So, we shall see...can't wait until 9/4.

mtzlblk - enjoyed the back and forth.

Go Blue!


August 15th, 2010 at 6:43 PM ^

I can't wait for all this talk to be moot.  But, since your friend is clueless, I voted.  With 285 votes in, it's 90.18%  in favor of "Yes."


August 15th, 2010 at 7:07 PM ^

in San Francisco the other night. Boy did they take a dim view. I was a little bit shocked. But if you've just been reading the popular press. . . 

ND Sux

August 15th, 2010 at 7:12 PM ^

I'm 100% behind RichRod, but I can't let that go.  I am sooooooo freakin's sick of the Lloyd Carr bashing.  Anybody who bashes Lloyd has an extremely short memory, and is NOT a true Michigan fan, IMO.  Neg me all you want Lloyd-haters, but also check the facts. 

First - I agree the cupboard was bare at QB when RRod came, but don't forget Lloyd had a QB in the "stable" that is now a HUGE star at Arkansas.  Ryan Mallett only transferred because he didn't fit RRod's system, and that's NOT Lloyd's fault.  According to The Wolverine, Mallett was UM's highest ranked recruit EVER. 

As for other positions, Lloyd left behind plenty of quality players.  A Arrington was an awesome WR but left early (not Lloyd's fault), Mallett transferred, but there were other quality players like Graham, Minor, C Brown, S Brown, Warren (left early), Terrance Taylor, Tim Jamison, Molk, Matthews, Hemingway, Savoy, Schilling, Massey, Butler, Mesko, Van Bergen, etc.  These were decent players that Lloyd would have taken to a bowl game, but new systems take time to adjust to, so everyone whines and blames Carr.  Indeed we were hit very hard by graduation, especially on offense, but that happens to every school now and then.  Lloyd should be congratulated for the senior class that graduated (and we all enjoyed watching), not blamed for it. 

Has everyone forgotten that we used to play defense at Michigan?  I have faith in Gerg, but again the new system takes time, and we did play good defense under a guy currently coaching at EMU. 

Lloyd has the 6th highest winning % in Big Ten history (10-year minimum), but that's not good enough?  Three of the five above him were Yost, Crisler, and Schembechler.  How about five Big Ten titles in 13 years, with 13 straight bowl appearances?  Not too shabby.  How about a National Championship?  A clean program?  Respected by his peers?  Does any of this mean squat to all the Carr-bashers out there? 

I'm fully behind RichRod, but tired of the "Carr damaged the program" BS.  Carr is a great Michigan man, and I'm thankful that he stood watch over the program for 13 years.   


August 15th, 2010 at 9:05 PM ^

I don't think a whole lot of people were bashing or blaming LC for our situation.  I think this site did a great job of showing that in fact the cupboard was bare and that was in part due to LC's subpar recruiting.  And looking back, its not surprising - his slow decline as coach clearly manifested itself on the recruiting trail.  In short, LC is in part to blame.

I think its unfortunate, however, that posters like yourself seem to give LC a free pass because he was a Michigan man, had an NC, can recite Chaucer, etc etc.  And in doing so, you look at the positives (big ten titles, etc), but forget the negatives (App State, record versus OSU).

His last years, for the most part, were not of Michigan quality and were IMO quite embarrassing - I could not be more happy that he is gone.  And that's not to say things are not embarrassing now - at least the excuse is more palatable.  

Despite how bad things are under RR, I can safely say (without generating a poll) that most people would not want LC back if it even was an option.  And that says a lot.  LC was at best a good (not great) coach who represented us well off the field and average on the field.

Am I bashing LC or blaming him?  Kinda.  Am I a Michigan Man? Most certainly.  So I guess the only thing we can take away from this is that the 2 are not mutually exclusive.

ND Sux

August 16th, 2010 at 7:36 AM ^

even if we disagree.  For example, you wrote "His last years, for the most part, were not of Michigan quality and were IMO quite embarrassing."  Does that include 2006 when UM and OSU were undefeated going into a #1 vs #2 matchup in Columbus?  We lost a tough battle by three points on the road, then lost another road game against a very good USC team in the Rose Bowl.  I wish we could have won both games, but I certainly was not embarrassed.

IMO Lloyd's "decline" is far overstated.  We were one play away from the NC game the year before his retirement.  He was indeed a GREAT coach. 


August 16th, 2010 at 12:19 PM ^

I qualified my statement "for the most part".  That 2006 season was a great season and we played our hearts out at that OSU game.  However, after we fans bitched and moaned about not getting into the NC game, we get manhandled by one of the more average USC squads of that decade - that was an embarrassment.

Well, I guess the difference between good and great is nebulous at best.  But what I think is not so nebulous, and as this site has shown with great analysis, was that LC was a classic underachiever.  He certainly loved his players (most college coaches do), but could not get the most out of them.  With all that talent, he made it or came close to making it to the NC game only twice in his career (not to mention his losing record against OSU).  So perhaps it is no surprise that he is not considered one of the great coaches by the media and peers.  You will not hear his name with the likes of Saban, Meyer, Tressel, Brown, Stoops, etc.  However, as Michigan, the winniest program in the game, we have to be committed to winning (the right way).  It seemed at the end, LC lost that objective.  And IMO, that is not of Michigan quality - I expect more out of a Michigan coach.