Stewart Mandel fail

Submitted by Gulogulo37 on September 15th, 2010 at 10:21 PM

It seems a lot of people rip Stewart Mandel, but I think he's ok RELATIVE TO other sportswriters. His mailbag is about the only thing on college football I read besides mgoblog. That being said, the last couple of weeks have involved a discussion about who one should root for when two teams face each other: the team you grew up with or your alma mater. Mandel thinks it's clearly your alma mater. Others disagreed in this week's mailbag, with one fan saying he lived and died Texas football for 18 years. Mandel counters that "college is such a formative time in a person's life". LOL. Uh, yea, because the first 18 years are pretty insignificant.

So what do you think? I was raised a Michigan fan through and through (essentially all of my family and an older brother who would punish me for failing Michigan quizzes) and couldn't imagine rooting for another team to beat Michigan no matter where I went to school or lived.



September 16th, 2010 at 10:30 AM ^

I was born in Ohio but have been a Michigan fan my whole life! I wasn't about to pay out of state tuition to attend Michigan even though many of my family members had gone there. Especially when I had a full scholorship to play baseball at a University in Ohio (Not OSU!). After College I didn't hesitate to get out of the state and move to Colorado. Now, however, due to mine and my wifes familes still being in Ohio, we have moved back to Cincinnati. The nice thing is I can come up to Michigan for a game anytime I want!


September 15th, 2010 at 10:29 PM ^

I think it would depend (among other things) on your proximity to the college, the importance of it in the state (for example, how UMinnesota is the only big-time school in that state), the type of college you attend, and its distance from your home.

There are a couple of Ivies in my office who *really* follow Missouri and Ohio State football even though they went to college somewhere else.

I'd agree that your 0-18 team would be hard to displace.


September 15th, 2010 at 10:35 PM ^



I've never understood why people expend so much energy thinking about who other people should root for. Root for the team you like most; root against the team you like least.


Make sure you hate Ohio State and the Yankees, though.


September 16th, 2010 at 6:02 AM ^

And I don't understand why so many posters need the reassurance enough to post these friggin' threads all the time.

Everey fan base of every team is comprised of about 99% who have never set foot on a college campus in their lives, let alone the one they root for. Without 'em, there'd be no fan base for any team.


September 15th, 2010 at 10:36 PM ^

Grew up in suburban Chicago a huge Bulls fan.  Hated everything Detroit, metro Detroit, Michigan... Parents, Grandparents, all Aunts and Uncles went to Illinois and all absolutely despised Michigan (which now, as an alum, I know makes no sense what-so-ever).  There's actually old VHS tape of me when I was 4 or 5 saying I hated U of M and when my Mom was like 'but its a really good school.  What if you get in?' I responded with a resounding 'never'.


As the end of high school came around, I still was fairly anti-Michigan up until I moved into the dorms in Ann Arbor.  First game in the Big House Freshman year was that last second field goal to beat Washington in '02, and since then, I've been hooked.


I guess what I'm trying to say is yea, college matters.  A lot.  I grew up a big U of I fan, which I can absolutely not stand now.  Maybe it is different growing up near Ann Arbor, or Austin, or Columbus...but not Chicago.


September 15th, 2010 at 10:43 PM ^

Tough call, I'd say this (with all due respect to Jamiemac- i think- and some others) but don't pick one school for one sport, and another school for another.  If you love michigan but went to IU... gotta go blue all the way.  None of this o'le bull shit.


September 15th, 2010 at 10:45 PM ^

I grew up in Ohio, about an hour away from Columbus.  I spent four glorious years in Ann Arbor as an undergraduate (graduated 12 years ago) and I STILL can't stop talking about my experience there.

Needless to say, I bleed Maize 'n Blue through and through.  In my mind and my experience, alma mater trumps everything else.


September 15th, 2010 at 10:56 PM ^

I grew up in Corvallis, OR and was a die-hard Beaver fan - family had season tickets to multiple sports, never missed a football game, etc.  Then I went off to college 500 miles away in Idaho (just in time for the Beavers to start winning games), and my passion for OSU (NTOSU) was never the same.  I still follow them, but I don't care like I do about the alma mater.  In rare instances when the play each other, I root for Idaho.

Then of course my wife moved me to Ann Arbor so she could continue her medical training, and now I haunt mgoblog late at night and count down the hours to each week's UFR being posted... so who knows if I'm a good example to go by.


September 15th, 2010 at 10:58 PM ^

Haaaaa this is not an option for me when it comes to football. I graduated from The Ohio State University and wouldn't give back those 4 years for the world. However, life long Michigan fan.. So when it comes to my school vs my alma mater, my school wins... 


September 15th, 2010 at 11:00 PM ^

i grew up in a suburb of seattle and i was a huge washington huskies fan in the 90s.  i was pissed steve emtman didn't win the heisman in 91, losing to some desmond howard guy who "only won because he got press from doing the pose in a game."  being the pac-10 homer i was back then, i semi-cheered for washington state in the 97 rose bowl.  i remember being pissed at the time keeper because i thought wsu should've had one more shot at the end zone.

everything changed when i first learned the fight song during orientation in 99.  i wasn't even slightly torn during the 02 washington game.

anyway, college mattered to me because i went to michigan.  but if i went to a school that had a lesser football tradition, i probably would've stuck being a husky fan.  


September 15th, 2010 at 11:07 PM ^

I moved around most my youth until 4th grade and lived 30 minutes from Columbus.  My friends were Michigan fans and not knowing who to root for being new I became a Michigan fan.  I have been ever since and if it wasn't for out of state tuition i would have gone to Michigan undergrad 4 years ago.  Instead I went to the best public college in the state... Ohio State.  While I have gone to some games I can't at all root for OSU i tried my freshman year to root for them when not playing UM but by sophmore year I couldnt even try anymore.  So long story short I might be a OSU alum but I sure and hell don't root for my Alum School. 

However I do feel that since OSU and UM are so closely related I wasnt subject to a chance of switching teams.  Say if I went to SEC country and went hardcore with their sports I could see people changing teams but since at OSU i hear breath and think about Michigan by basis of Big 10 and Biggest Rival it is hard to even imagine switching teams when i went to college.


September 15th, 2010 at 11:07 PM ^

Grew up in Oregon. Michigan was my destination for education and to be a part of the Michigan football experience. Couldn't get enough so I got 2 degrees. Moved back to Oregon for a career, but wife is from Ann Arbor, so I make many returns. No internal struggles here.


September 15th, 2010 at 11:07 PM ^

I am going to a school down south right now. I grew up rooting for Michigan. I got in, but couldn't afford it, so I'm at another school. I'm only a frosh so my love for my actual college team has time to grow, but I would definitely root for Michigan to kick our asses if we ever played in a bowl game.


September 15th, 2010 at 11:10 PM ^

I grew up a Michigan football fan my entire life. My older brother went there 4 years before I graduated, and so I spent a lot of time over there visiting him throughout high school and for various athletic/extra-curricular functions. When it came time to choose my college, my decision essentially boiled down to UNC or Michigan.

For me, my decision came down to where I would be happier spending 4 (or as the future would have it 3) years of my life. Both schools were about even on all of the academic rankings, both had strong athletic followings (UNC had won the NCAAB championship my junior year, and I had grown up partial to UNC basketball anyways ever since finding out Jordan went there), and as a walk-on track athlete I was about on par at either place. With scholarships, both schools were going to be roughly $1000 per year, so cost wasn't an issue. I eventually decided to go out of state, since I had been in Michigan for 18 years and had spent a large amount of time getting to know Michigan. UNC was new, it was exciting, it was 70 degrees in March. My decision not to go to UM had nothing to do with not getting in, disliking it, not being a fan or any other reason. I simply needed a change of pace and a change of scenery. And I don't think my situation is unique, whether it is a different state or just a different college in the area. (Side note: my older brother also came down to UNC for grad school after Michigan. This shows a) that it's an understandable choice and b) another slight reason for my decision).

That being said, my allegiances are somewhat strained. I grew up a Michigan fan (and brother), am a Tar Heel alumnnus, and now go to medical school at Virginia Tech. In football, Michigan will always and forever win, hands down. Nothing can ever replace the winged helmet for me, and I hope to come back to the UM system one day for my residency (so my brother and I can finally get those half-wing tattoos we've always joked about). However, I would root for UNC over any other Big Ten team in football. In basketball, I only hope that UNC never has to play Michigan, because I would hate to ever have to cheer against Belein and the boys in blue. Which I would totally do. Sorry guys.



September 15th, 2010 at 11:11 PM ^

I grew up with Duke basketball, Dad was an alum, and went to plenty of games at Cameron growing up.  I can still name every Duke starting line up from 98-06.  When we played Duke twice my freshman year I was whole heartedly cheering for Michigan both times.  When I went home for Christmas, I hide 20 copies of the Michigan Daily from our victory over Duke in my dad's office.  He actually found one this morning and gave me a call.  My college has definitely trumped my childhood team.


September 15th, 2010 at 11:19 PM ^

I was born and raised in Florida, and grew up a Florida Gator.  I had the "I'm a hungry Gator, chomp chomp" baby bibs, the uniforms, footballs, bed sheets, bobble heads, etc.  I even trick-or-treated as Danny Wuerffel for 4 straight years.  My parents, cousins, aunts, uncles and all other known extended family are all Gators, alumni donors, and athletic boosters.  I was considered a "legacy applicant" to the UF admissions department.  My admission was practically guaranteed.  I broke a lot of hearts when I said I would be attending the University of Michigan to study economics.  


That said, my four years in Ann Arbor shaped me into the man I am today.  I can proudly say that I will always be a Michigan Man and my time spent in college far outweighed my 18 years of development/brainwashing.  Lloyd's last game was special in so many ways, but for me, I was able to beam with pride for the Maize and Blue as the rest of my family started the New Year sulking.

big gay heart

September 15th, 2010 at 11:30 PM ^

I have degrees from Miami University and San Diego State. I root for them peripherally. I'm going to the University of Oregon right now. The Ducks are ok, I want them to win but I'm not going to be pissed off if they don't. Michigan is the only team I really care about.


September 15th, 2010 at 11:44 PM ^

I dont need to give my lifes story or anything but as a Bowling Green State University student I think that my situation might apply to this particular question.

As a lifelong Michigan fan there is no question  in my mind who I will root for on September 25th and thats Michigan of course. I have a lot of love and respect for my school and I am a oud supporter in just about every way I can be but I will never, ever, ever root against Michigan.

It will be tough to cheer against my Falcons, especially since I know a couple guys on the team. But regardless of that I dont think its a tough decision at all, its not even a choice really. I will always be more a Michigan fan then a fan of anyone else.

Although if I happened to grow up a Michigan fan but comitted to and played for Miami, thats a different story. Only then could I see lying my allegiances somewhere other than in Ann Arbor.

A Case of Blue

September 16th, 2010 at 12:07 AM ^

I'm the daughter of a Michigan man, and he got me started on fandom early by taking us to a game once a year when I was a kid, even though we lived in Wisconsin.  I spent 18 years rooting for Michigan before I decided where to go to college, and then when the time came I decided to go to private college out east, where there was no football team and I could keep on cheering for Michigan.

Interestingly, both my dad and I went to grad school places that also have pretty good football teams (I went to Iowa), and that never changed a thing for either of us.

Once an M fan, always an M fan.


September 16th, 2010 at 12:22 AM ^

I grew up a Michigan fan by living in Southern Michigan and Toledo. I have always loved UM, but went college in DC. College football was not popular there and even though my roommate played on the football team, all we really cared about was free booze at the homecoming game. However, when basketball came around I was a true Hoya fan having basketball season tickets and traveling to as many away games as possible (this includes the long track out to the Cap Center for the home games). You get caught up in the emotions while at school (pretty sure alcohol plays a part here) and it is hard not to root for your alma mater. Luckily for me football never will cause me to choose sides, but I can say that if Georgetown plays Michigan in the NCAA Tournament or regular season, I will always root for Georgetown.


September 16th, 2010 at 2:37 AM ^

I mean, you root for you root for.  Is someone less of a fan because they did not attend Michigan?  Or if they didn't start rooting for Michigan until they started school in AA?

And for good measure, Stewart Mandel is an idiot.  I'll never forget when he picked MSU over Michigan as his Upset of the Week...when State was favored by 4.


September 16th, 2010 at 3:46 AM ^

and I'm not saying there is or should be a rule. I'm just curious how things actually stand with people since I don't have any such conflict myself. I've actually wanted to have a "second" team to root for. I feel like I watch college football so much I should have someone else to root for. Instead, it just turns out I like whatever helps out Michigan and whoever's the underdog though. I went to graduate school at Carnegie Mellon and thought I might be able to latch on to Pitt, but that didn't work out well at all. Obviously living in the city and going to the school are totally different, but I had a bit of hope anyway. Plus, it was hard to care when no one else in the damn city seemed to care. The Steelers are all that matters, and even PSU seems bigger than Pitt (at least by who's at the bars on Saturdays).