A popular post on Michigan Rivals message board has been circulating via email and was reposted by genuinely sarcastic and discussed on mgoblog. The author made the case that RR should be fired and did it in a way that came off as thoughtful and balanced. It was the best case I've heard and it was an entertaining read albeit extremely long-winded and tangential. What I've tried to do is condense it into the author's core reasons for firing RR. I have many qualms with the post, but thought I'd open it up for MGoBloggers to discuss. Are these valid reasons to fire RR?
Here's the core of the Fire RR Rationale:
1. Vanity. RR took “special joy” in dismantling the program [tradition] in order to fully rebuild it in his own image. Contrast with Bo, who had his own way of doing things, but understood doing it within the context the Michigan tradition. Rich doesn't seem to understand that Michigan is bigger than him.
2. Lack of Diplomacy. RR criticized Lloyd's program, antagonizing Carr-era holdovers. RR established a tone from the start that opened himself up to being undermined. RR did little to earn respect and support from Lloyd Carr.
3. Recruiting Decline. Average rank of player has declined.
4. Diminished Academic Culture. RR recruits too many academically borderline players. “While Lloyd used to get his one or two exceptions a year for borderline kids, we take more of them under Rodriguez”. RR does not take “academics seriously beyond lip service”, and runs UofM no different than he would an SEC school.
5. Defensive Approach. “Rodriguez views the defense as a sparring partner for the offense [and primarily] there to get our offense ready. Stopping other teams is the secondary objective.”
6. Inability to Manage. It is “beyond [RR’s] management and leadership abilities” to run a program like Michigan. “Michigan is simply a bigger, tougher job than West Virginia” due to Detroit market size and conference strength of the Big10 (i.e. need for excellence on both sides of the ball, not just one). RR is “not a strong enough manager and leader to cope with the events of the day and halt a critical downward spiral.”
7. Lack of “attention to detail”. RR has failed to create a winning culture that exhibits attention to detail. As a result, breakdowns in execution, fundamentals, concentration, and ball security occur. (7a) Exhibit A: Fumbling “On 7 of Rich's last 10 teams fumbling has been a major problem” across different programs and players. (7b) Exhibit B: The defense is awful. Casteel, Shafer, Robinson have all been successful without RR, so RR is responsible.” An overhaul of the defensive staff will not fix the problem, since two competent coordinators have already failed. (7c) Exhibit C: Special teams. “Special teams is ALL about coaching and attention to detail.” Ohio State and Va Tech special teams are always better than us because of “attention to detail”.
Note: To people griping about all the redundant threads - save it. I clearly labeled the thread and anyone who doesn't want to discuss this topic is free to ignore it. I starting a new thread because I think its an interesting topic to discuss, I think I added something worthwhile to the conversation, and its entirely seperate discussion from the other thread which seemed to focus on genuinly sarcastic's personaility or the validity of the "what if Mike Debord was coach" conjecture.