Thank Goodness Pittsburgh Fired Dave Wannstedt

Submitted by Enjoy Life on November 18th, 2009 at 12:40 AM

Pittsburgh went 9-4 (2002), 8-5 (2003), 8-4 (2004)

Then they hired Dave Wannstedt.

He went: 5-6 (2005), 6-6 (2006), and 5-7 (2007)

Of course he was fired after the 2007 season.

Wait, what? He wasn't? Jeez that was a huge mistake!

Ohhh, he went 9-4 (2008) and is currently 9-1

Crap, that just doesn't make any sense. Any coach should be able to have a winning record after 3 years. It's just stupid to give a coach 4-5 years!



November 18th, 2009 at 2:16 PM ^

But... Rich Rod is the wrong guy to coach this team. He has done one of the worst coaching jobs here in NCAA history, particularly for a big time program.

This is not Tom Hagan just saying this...

These are fully and 100% (150%+??) supported by FACTS.

Please explain to me how that statement is a fact. Better yet, don't bother, because it's not a fact. It's 100% (150%+??) pure opinion.


November 21st, 2009 at 6:42 PM ^

You cannot wait to see what RR can do with a full class of players selected by himself? I've seen progress, and so has everyone else except for you. Someone needs to rip the shitty accustic guitar out of your hands and smash it over your cobb-webbed filled skull.


November 18th, 2009 at 6:36 AM ^

Not to mention that the 2009 class was ranked higher than any Lloyd Carr class from 2002 onward.

Edit: We were the #5 class in 2004, so recruiting HAS one notch.

The King of Belch

November 18th, 2009 at 8:14 AM ^

Visits means Recruiting Win! Offers mean Recruiting WIN!

King Beaver saying the staff is working hard means Recruiting WIN!

I wish the Kool Aid crew would sit back and save their negbanging popular girl contests for two years from now (or will it be 3 after next year; will they be talking 2019 this spring?) when their guarantees of Rodriguez success come true.

Then they won't look like brats who are all just mad because people disagree with them and are looking strictly at results (two more wins notwithstanding, even though the two more wins have come at the expense of Delaware State and Indiana LOL)


November 18th, 2009 at 9:35 AM ^

faith in a proven coach does not equal kool-aid drinking. every rich rod supporter has a bottom line. 7 wins next year, 9-10 in 2011 (my personal expectations). i'm sick of the rich rod supporters being portrayed as the ones with blinders on. tell me who will turn it around? who is going to win the big10 with this talent? who is going to out-recruit richrod that actually wants this job? until you have some solid answers, it seems to me as though the "haters" are the ones who can't see the forest for the trees.

Clarence Beeks

November 18th, 2009 at 9:48 AM ^

"tell me who will turn it around? who is going to win the big10 with this talent? who is going to out-recruit richrod that actually wants this job? until you have some solid answers, it seems to me as though the "haters" are the ones who can't see the forest for the trees."

This is one of the best statements that could possibly be made here to dispel the ignorance of posters like tomhagen and kingofbarf. The proof is in the fact that they will never respond to your question. It's easy to sit in their position and throw stones from the sidelines, but when it comes to actual solutions? The silence is deafening.

The King of Belch

November 18th, 2009 at 10:08 AM ^

Coming from people who say things like "The future is bright" or "Rich Rod will get it done" based on NOTHING but blind faith, asking for "solid answers" is a bit hypocritical.

But for solid answers: We don't have to provide and answer as to who we think would or could turn it around. It's not our job to hire coaches. We look at the results on the field and the numerous other foibles and ask "Why so much faith?"

I don't think ANYONE speculated as to how "bad" the talent was--until the team went into the toilet and excusing ineptitude and blaming players became the norm.

As to who might out-recruit rich rod--how much recruiting prowess did he show at WVU? And without him, they seem to be recruiting better than ever. And really, Michigan? Trouble recruiting? WIth shiny new facilities, a great new Big House, and oodles of playing time to offer? Great recruiters are great recruiters and can get talent they need (COUGH RON ZOOK COUGH)

Do you really want to ask "Who wants this job?"--Just because Michigan conducted exactly ZERO coaching search process after Lloyd retired doesn't mean no one wanted the job. And doesn't mean that this time. What I don't get is the fear factor that has seeped into the AORTA group. I don't buy that if Rich Rod is canned the program will go (farther) into the toilet just because Rich Rod isn't here. I've never heard of a coach who so definitively needed HIS TYPE OF PLAYER to win, or a guy whose system was so goddamm specific that no one but players only HE know about could make it work.

No one is talking about winning the Big Ten. But make a bowl? Hell, that IS a toughie when you consider that only 64 teams make bowl games every year. And after 4-0, and all the chest puffing out and "I done told ya he could turn thangs around in Year 2"--a 1-6 mega and meta collapse is pretty awful. Got to win ONE game (besides the guaranteed win over Delaware St)--and unless he beats OSU, not gonna do it. I think a lot of us with reservations about Rodriguez's success look at that kind of stuff and shake our heads. It just doesn't seem possible.

And now I totally understand revised expectations--nothing is etched in stone. But for people to say they thought 5-6 wins this year and 7 next year from the get-go? Disingenuous at best.

Clarence Beeks

November 18th, 2009 at 10:16 AM ^

"I don't think ANYONE speculated as to how "bad" the talent was--until the team went into the toilet and excusing ineptitude and blaming players became the norm."

Uhh... apparently you weren't paying very much attention in 2007...

"As to who might out-recruit rich rod--how much recruiting prowess did he show at WVU? And without him, they seem to be recruiting better than ever."

Way to show absolutely zero knowledge of the situation at WVU before RR took over and give absolutely zero credit for their continued recruiting success to what he built there.

The King of Belch

November 18th, 2009 at 10:29 AM ^

You're not bringing substance, just anger. Rodriguez couldn't recruit to WVU. Stewart can. Sure, part of their recruiting success is that they are now on the map and have been a good program for the last half-decade.

Michigan was a great program for 40 years.

No one argues the talent drop-off after 2007. However, there was still talent here--and more than enough to win more than three Big Ten games in two years. Expecially a Big Ten that many people, and a lot here, are calling a pretty bad conference.


November 18th, 2009 at 3:16 AM ^

Why do we have to be for or against a coach. Its like people want coach rod to fail. The football team is representing a wonderful place where some of us went to school. Did I like coach Carr? Yes. Did I ever say he should be fired? No. Do I like coach Rod? Yes. Have I ever said he should be fired? No. But if that were to happen, or he were to step down 15 years from now, I will support the next coach just the same. Instead of focusing on what he hasn't done. You should focus on what he can do! If he can pull one out on Saturday we could be looking at a nice 7 game winning streak before we welcome the spartans to our house next october. I can't wait for saturday!


November 18th, 2009 at 3:45 AM ^

Wannstedt isn't a real good comparison. Having family who are on the Pitt team, the Stache has become at this point essentially a figurehead to a large degree. Most of Pitt's recent success can be attributed to Frank Cignetti being the OC.
DW is a very good recruiter and a real nice guy, but he isn't a great football mind. The previous OC and DW are the same guys who didn't even let Joe Flacco compete for the QB job because they didnt think he'd fit in a pro style offense, a bit comical in hindsight.

To his credit I think he's comfortable doing what he does well and handing the reigns over a bit to others. I doubt RR is at the point in his career where he'd be satisfied being a figurehead. On another note, I have heard that CC has shown renewed interest in Pitt recently. I'm not stirring the pot to cause issues, could simply be a matter of a local kid enjoying the home teams resurgence, I have just heard rumblings. I'm not a Pitt alum or even a fan beyond rooting for family to do well and nothing I have heard says he's wavering on UM, it would just give me pause. I'm not starting a rumor, I just think he's taking notice of them improving and they are graduating a lot of db's also.

Clarence Beeks

November 18th, 2009 at 9:57 AM ^

That's an extremely inaccurate portrayal of the Flacco situation. Flacco transferred because he was buried on the depth chart behind Tyler Palko, who at the time Flacco transferred, was already a two-year starter for Pitt and if he were to have stayed at Pitt he would have only had the opportunity to start for one year (his red-shirt senior year). It's awfully hard to criticize Pitt's decision to go with Palko over Flacco when Palko ended up in the top three of virtually all of Pitt's all time passing numbers (he was only about 250 yards behind Dan Marino, for pete's sake). Hindsight is always easy.


November 18th, 2009 at 5:01 AM ^

1. Why don't you think a head coach should get 3 years minimum, regardless of team performance?

2. What coach would you replace him with right now?


November 18th, 2009 at 7:43 AM ^

I haven't seen addressed is the fact that everyone was clamouring about how RR had these amazing turn arounds in year 2. This obviously didn't happen and people were probably looking for that and when it didn't occur they jumped off. It's understandable for one fact. This system is complex and a first yr QB is not the answer. Next year Tate and Denard should know the playbook from front to back and the offense should be much improved which in turn should lead to more victories.


November 18th, 2009 at 7:58 AM ^

Seriously? In regards to improvement, I point out that 5 wins is more than 3...and you say it doesn't really count because it's less than 6 victories? Do you know what the definition of "improvement" is?

"We could very well have 3 wins as we could 7." You're right. So if you're saying we're just as bad as a 3-win team, then we're also just as good as a 7-win team.

Which is paradoxical and ridiculous.

We are a 5-win team. Stop spewing bullshit about "We could have lost more games" and "Five wins isn't any better than three wins." It makes you sound stupid, and I don't think you are.


November 18th, 2009 at 8:02 AM ^

saying that going from not making a bowl to not making a bowl is not improvement. Yes 3 > 5 but it doesn't do much for us. A bowl game is all that matters and that has not been reached. Agree to disagree I suppose.


November 18th, 2009 at 8:09 AM ^

I don't agree to disagree. It's not a matter of agreement. It is about facts. The definition of "improvement" in the dictionary is not "when a team goes from having a losing record to making a bowl game."

By the definition of the word "improvement," we have improved from 3 wins to 5 (and pending) wins. Your subjective definition of improvement is irrelevant to the discussion.

"The sky is blue."

"'s not as blue as it used to be, so no, the sky isn't blue."

"No...seriously...the sky is blue."

"Welp...agree to disagree."


November 18th, 2009 at 2:59 PM ^

The goal for this season was to make a bowl. Anything less should not be seen as an improvement. Oh how I love how you stoop to such low levels to try to make me look stupid and you the superior one. Give me a break. We haven't beaten a team worth a damn this year and ran up the score against a defenseless D. State team. If you want to say beating a shitty ND team and Baby Seal U is improvement then be my guest but you're the one who looks stupid, not me.


November 18th, 2009 at 4:15 PM ^

You're obviously incompetent bc u can't tell me how beating a bunch of Sallys is such an improvement. We are scoring fewer points per game, we won't make a bowl, etc. Saying that goals are irrelevant to a football team is laughable.

When you don't win a 6th game the season is a wash. That is what this season has become. The defense still stinks, we have brain farts after halftime of every game and we won't get extra practice time that a bowl would allow. Keep posting your idiocracy.

The only improvement after a year without a bowl is to make one the next. I've said it once and i'll say it again. Talking with you is as productive as chattin up a wall.


November 18th, 2009 at 4:27 PM ^

"u can't tell me how beating a bunch of Sallys is such an improvement."

I don't know... I mean, we lost to those "Sallys" last year. know...there's that.

"We are scoring fewer points per game..."

What. The. Fuck. We have scored 342 points in 11 games this year. We scored 243 points in 12 games last year.

I didn't say goals are irrelevant to a football team. I'm saying they're irrelevant to IMPROVEMENT. Because that's what we're talking about. Improvement. Not goals, not bowl games - improvement.

What's "laughable" is the fact that you keep changing the subject and can't accept the standardized definitions put forth by the English language.


November 18th, 2009 at 4:40 PM ^

that this team has won 1 conference game this year and 1 last I don't call that improvement. They are scoring fewer ppg during conference play. OOC games don't mean jack when you look at how shitty this team has been against the teams it has to face year in and year out. I don't think that improvement is beating teams we should beat. The thing that has always been the most important to coaches from Bo and on has been to win the Big Ten. 1 win this year and 1 last. How is that improvement? That's rhetorical, don't bother answering : )


November 18th, 2009 at 4:50 PM ^

I didn't realize you were basing "improvement" on your selected criteria (in-conference points per game) rather than the overall record, which is the only thing that really matters. Mea culpa.

And to show you that I'm fair in my arguments, this team won two Big Ten games last year (Wisconsin and Minnesota). It doesn't help my argument, but it does highlight the fact that you don't have a fucking clue what you're talking about.


November 18th, 2009 at 4:54 PM ^

I forgot about the gophs. Regardless I want this team to win Saturday and am excited as all Hell to be there. It will be my first OSU game since college. Thanks for the debate, which you kinda won : ). Until next time.

Enjoy Life

November 18th, 2009 at 8:18 AM ^

"FACT":A fact is a pragmatic truth, a statement that can, at least in theory, be checked and confirmed. Facts are often contrasted with opinions and beliefs, statements which are held to be true, but are not amenable to pragmatic confirmation.

What you provided a e-pinions not facts.

Here is what you claimed are "Facts":

1) The team has not shown any improvement over the last 2 years (e-pinion -- not a fact)

2) Recruiting has dropped (e-pinion, disproved by actual facts in comments by others above)

3) There have been significant off field distractions such as issues with players, NCAA investigations, lawsuits etc. (e-pinion because the term "significant" is undefined by you and "distraction" is also an e-pinion)

3) [sic] There has not even been 1 single sign of positivity that Rich Rodriguez can get it done at Michigan? (a rather silly e-pinion because you only asked for 1 "sign" and several other commenter have provided more than 1)

4) These have been the 2 worst Michigan teams in modern history...on an unprecedented scale of failure? (not sure what you mean by "modern history")

BUT, KIPKE 1-7, 4-4, 1-7, 4-4 in 1934-37

Elliott 2-7, 3-4 in 1962-64


November 18th, 2009 at 9:41 AM ^

FACT...something you can talk until you're BLUE in the face,
but some people won't listen.You can't teach speed or instinct.
Youth makes mistakes.These kids play their asses off and that should be worth something.
Michigan will lose until they match up better with the team across the field. Plain......simple...

It's like in racing ... you match a VW bug against a vette,then you bitch the VW driver out for blowing the race.


November 18th, 2009 at 9:09 AM ^

the real issue, as stated by people above, is that firing Rodriguez will not be for the good of the University or the football program. He may never get Michigan where we want it to be and may be fired eventually, but I think you give him until at least the end of next year. The damage of firing a previously successful coach in two years like this could set Michigan back another 5-10 years.

If we miss a bowl game again, then I think you can argue he should be let go. I would probably give him until 2011 regardless of on-field performance. I also think we will go 9-3 next year. By the way, I predicted 5-7 this year. Expectations here are everything. I felt I had realistic expectations considering the team and schedule we have. You clearly disagree with the situation Rodriguez and the team are in.


November 18th, 2009 at 9:23 AM ^

and Harbaugh seems to be breaking through in year 3.

Football takes time to build (or rebuild).

I attended an alumni event recently, and some MBA-hole was doing the whole "RichRod has to go" routine. The whining makes me sick.

We have more walk-ons contributing on defense than we have seniors. Lloyd certainly knew when to retire. Can you imagine how bad the defense would be if RR didnt look seriously at walk-ons? Just which upper classmen are playing behind walk ons?


November 18th, 2009 at 9:24 AM ^

Someone correct me if I'm wrong... but wasn't Walt Harris' move to Stanford not 100% voluntary? I seem to remember him being utterly loathed around Pittsburgh and being gently pushed to look for other work.

OSUMC Wolverine

November 18th, 2009 at 9:42 AM ^

Tressel inherited an a**load of talent being that if nothing else Cooper was an excellent recruiter. Also, both coaches play relatively traditional football--therefore many of the players fit the system already. Therefore the transition was not particularly painful. Also, Tressel is an Ohio man and knows the recruiting circuit...a big advantage in one of the top HS football states in the nation. These are advantages that RR has not enjoyed. Add in the outside distractions and this has proven more difficult than many of us could have ever imagined. In some ways it is embarrassing how much adversity RR has had to overcome...the Bucknut fanbase rallied around Tressel and werent ready to kick him to the curb when he opened 3-3 his first season. It will pass...and we will never lose to App State again. RR needs to be given the time and the patience on our part to do what he has done in the past...bring success.

Secondly, I dont understand the dwelling by so many people because of the number of kids in this class that arent highly ranked. One of the things we lack is depth, midling players are likely to stay 4-5 years with a RS and contribute over time. Top 10 recruits at any position are more likely to become disgruntled, frustrated, or transfer because of adversity and a lack of playing time. Would I love all top 10 recruits...absolutely. But depth is not a bad thing is a game of attrition. My only area of concern is a lack of Big Uglies in this class....hopefully that will work itself out.


November 18th, 2009 at 10:32 AM ^

If you look for improvement, you should look at how they play last year compare with this year. That is the best indication of improvement or not.
So let us talk about the offense first. Last year new system, young players, no depth at QB, WR or O-line, looks like they were lost and didn't know where their place was on the field. All that resulted in a very poor performance something unbearable to watch. This year add a few new young players, another year in the system, a QB that can actually play, although still a freshman and the offence looks way improved (fact).
Now let's talk about the defense. Last year bad, really bad. This year new system, young players, no depth at CB, LB or S, looks like they are lost and don't know where their place is on the field. All this resulted in a very poor performance something unbearable to watch. Next year add a few new young players, another year in the system, some players that can actually play and the defense will look much better. How do I know that? It seems to me that is a pattern here. All you need is patience.

los barcos

November 18th, 2009 at 11:07 AM ^

arbitrary comparisions of those who have had success mean absolutely nothing for the future of michigan football. Nothing.

for every wannestache there's a callahan or zook or jl smith and for everyone of those guys there's a harbaugh or carrol. and the cycle continues.

seriously, these posts must stop. all they do is start a flame war because of how stupid the premise is. if you want to discuss the merits of whether this team has shown improvement that's one thing. but to give these strawman arguments that "wannestach did it so can rr" that contributes Nothing and just causes a lot of madness.


November 23rd, 2009 at 10:27 AM ^

...with every "Coach X succeeded in a year" there are just as many, if not more counter examples of a program being rewarded for patience.

While it is impossible to say how Michigan's situation will turn out, posts like these are good reminders to stay patient in a time when morale is low. Especially with "Paul Johnson" comparisons overrunning mgoboard


November 18th, 2009 at 6:07 PM ^

Actually, Dave Wannstedt is a GREAT comparison for RR's situation. Why?

Wannstedt took a team that had gone 25-13 in the three years prior to his arrival and had just come off of a conference championship, and "led" them, promptly, to 5-6, 6-6, 5-7.

Wannstedt inherited the starting QB, 2 leading rushers, 3 leading receivers, 2 of their 3 leading tacklers, their 3 best pass rushers, and their 2 starting CB's from that Big East championship squad (a stronger talent base than RR inherited, we can agree?).

Similar to Rodriguez, he inherited a team that had been successful, and saw them decline. Unlike Rodriguez, he actually didn't see much attrition or loss to graduation - he retained virtually the entire team.

However, in the switch from Walt Harris' scheme to Wannstedt's, both the offense and defense - with virtually identical personell - regressed.

Since that point, Pitt has succeeded, with Wannstedt's recruits larding the senior and junior classes.

Not every coach is a Paul Johnson - chill out.