Why were the banners taken down?

Submitted by cp4three2 on March 14th, 2011 at 12:29 AM

After watching the movie tonight, it seemed pretty obvious that there were no violations occurring while the Fab 5 were freshmen.  I asked around on Rivals and the best I could find was that Mary Sue Coleman ordered them down and the wins vacated, not the NCAA.  Why would she do that?


Albom seemed pretty convinced that Webber didn't get money until after his sophomore season had ended. Is there not a clear timeline to the events?



March 14th, 2011 at 3:05 AM ^

choice regarding what they were signing.  The NCAA is a monopoly.  If they want to play college ball, athletes MUST play by NCAA rules.  There is a total imbalance of power.  There is a reason monopolies are typically not allowed to exist - perhaps the NCAA should not be given an exception to antitrust law.  This situation is compounded by the NBA monopoly on pro bball in the US - perhaps the NBA shouldn't be given an exception to antitrust law either.  Is it really fair to carve out exceptions to certain laws anyway?  There is merit to this argument.  If  Webber holds this opinion, I can understand why he is not anxious to apologize for his actions.  The NCAA uses its monopoly to  essentially compel him to comply with certain rules in order for him to have a chance at a pro career while it makes millions off of him and then attacks him for LEGALLY taking a gift or loan from a friend or associate.  When you look at it this way, why should he apologize?  Maybe they should apologize to him?

Just a few thoughts.  I am sure there are plenty of people who will defend these exceptions to antitrust law. But when you try to look at it from all sides, I think it may not be defensible.




March 14th, 2011 at 2:39 AM ^

I hope the new arena/player development center has a special secret room where those banners are displayed for only players and coaches to see. Think that would be cool, and serve symbol of the cultural significance of the Fab 5. Also a good way to to bring the former players that feel betrayed by the the U, including Webber, to get to bleed maize and blue again.


March 14th, 2011 at 3:47 AM ^

To those of us who were able to enjoy the Fab Five era, there is no erasing that from the memory banks. It was an incredible experience, one I will never forget. Banners or no banners, the Fab Five was and always will be my favorite sports memory.

There have been great sports memories in my lifetime in Michigan with the Bad Boys, 84 Tigers, great U of M football teams and basketball teams, Red Wing championships. Nothing compares to the excitement of the Fab Five making those deep tournament runs in my opinion. They can erase the record books and banners and TV replays but the Fab Five left indelible memories that will never fade.


March 14th, 2011 at 5:15 AM ^

I was a freshman when Jimmy King and Ray Jackson finished playing at Michigan. I was in the second orientation that Willie Mitchell attended before his freshman year. My sophomore year, I lived across the intersection from Travis Conlan. I saw quite a bit of what was happening.

MITCH ALBOM IS AN ASSCLOWN. Sorry, I had to say it. He wrote the first Fab Five book and used that, and still does as some badge for him. He'll defend those kids, and the biggest, sorest, most entitled brat their is, Chris Webber. In other posts I've explained why the NCAA monopoly assured Webber of big money in the NCAA. I'll ignore that for now. 

Don't trust Albom on any of this. When he tells you they were starving, they weren't. They should have had meal plans with their room and board paid by the U. if they chose not to use it, that was stupidiity on their part. Besides, their selfish actions and lies cost Michigan basketball 10 years. Most people forget that Frieder was a successful coach, and his predecessor Johnny Orr - (go check out his stabbing Frieder in the back to take the Iowa St job) lead Michigan to a championship game appearance against IU in 1976. So it's not like Michigan wasn't already a very solid, competititve team without histroy when Fisher took over, or before the Fab Five arrived. But by the time Fisher's two major recruiting classes were done, the UofM was left in shambles requiring years of assistance.


March 14th, 2011 at 6:53 AM ^

Doesn't matter whether it was correct or not. The university took a huge penalty and has been rebuilding since. OSU should take note, when your players are engaged in impropriety, the only way to rectify the situation is to come clean, admit wrongdoing and take your punishment like a man.
<br>Also, Jalen Rose was/is awesome.


March 14th, 2011 at 7:29 AM ^

In an ideal world, you are right.  However, Michigan is just now digging itself out of the hole created by the Ed Martin fiasco, some 15 years later.  

The correct way in this era is to stonewall every step of the way and then bitch about how you have been "wronged" by the NCAA when you get caught.  Also, a school should never volunteer information, and if  they do their own "investigation," they should always lowball their suggested "punishment."

MSU, which was the number two program in the state for most of its existence, has been number one for over ten years now, at least until this year, thanks to the Ed Martin Fiasco.  If Michigan had taken the USC/TSIO stonewall approach, who's to say they wouldn't have been back up there a lot sooner?

Michigan, though, does things the right way.  As the overused adage goes, though, no good deed goes unpunished. 

Kilgore Trout

March 14th, 2011 at 8:21 AM ^

In some way, I think UM did kind of take the stonewall approach.  Everyone had an inkling something was up, but it never went anywhere until the FBI got involved and compelled people to talk.   This is one of the big ways that this OSU thing actually is kind of similar.  The offenses are certainly less (by the players at least) down there, but they could still really end up going down when the FBI gets involved.

Frank Drebin

March 14th, 2011 at 7:53 AM ^

I think it is right that the banners have been taken down since they were playing an ineligible player for 2 years. However, I do think that in 2013, when Webber is allowed contact with the program again, that the University should put up a Fab Five banner to signify one of the greatest sports movements in modern history. Just something to say that they played here and shouldn't be forgotten, regardless of the violations that came as a result. This would mend fences with the players and the University and allow all who step into Crisler the chance to reflect on what happened over those few years. It would almost be like retiring their jersey's as a collective unit.


March 14th, 2011 at 8:20 AM ^

So, as good as the documentary was it was pretty biased.  They completely blew over what a big deal the Ed Martin Scandal was.  The University had to come down hard on themselves because the NCAA would have.  That meant forfeited games and taking down banners.


March 14th, 2011 at 3:10 PM ^

They could raise back the 1992 banner, but not the 1993 one because those games have been vacated.  But I doubt they ever will, because lots of people can't understand the distinction and will think the university is celebrating rule-breaking.  For PR purposes it will almost certainly never go up,

BTW, the documentary didn't mention it, but we also had to take down a 1997 NIT championship banner and the 1998 Big Ten Tournament banner.

Bando Calrissian

March 14th, 2011 at 8:30 PM ^

There's no distinction between the 1992 and 1993 banners, even if the Elite 8 in 1992 was not vacated.  Those banners celebrate two Final Four appearances, not two Elite 8 wins.  As far as the sanctions are concerned, Michigan vacated the 4 combined games they played in the 1992 and 1993 Final Fours, and returned the money they received from the NCAA for their participation.  Thus, there's no reason for either of those banners to hang in Crisler Arena, and definitely no reason for 1992 to be acceptable and 1993 to remain in storage.