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Date Title Body
01/19/2019 - 4:46pm Can someone point me to the…

Can someone point me to the phantom anti-Beilein comments? Ya'll are really jumping the gun on the "omg Michigan fans are so spoiled, look at them complain after their first loss in 18 games".

This game happened a long time ago. We all knew it was inevitable that Iggy would have an off night and the rest of the offense would play sloppy and fail to get hot from three. Honestly I still don't get why Beilein thinks the autobench is worth it, but it seems to be the one thing he doesn't want to toy with. Way too much sloppy play to win at the Trohl center. I know it doesn't really work like this, but I'll just tell myself they're getting it out of their system before the backloaded last two weeks of their schedule. 

01/08/2019 - 12:42am Nebraska is too high. Texas…

Nebraska is too high. Texas is too low.

01/08/2019 - 12:31am Dabo and Saban were both…

Dabo and Saban were both able to win their conference in year 2, Saban did it by beating Urban Meyer and Tim Tebow. Dabo just got lucky in a garbage year for the ACC. If anyone but Urban, Saban, or Dabo had coached OSU the last 4 years I think Harbaugh would have 2 Big Ten Championships. Alas... as long as OSU keeps only losing 1 game in conference play, it's not going to look like Harbaugh has accomplished anything.

01/08/2019 - 12:22am This is a good point, as is…

This is a good point, as is the comment above about Dabo being 0-5 against Spurrier at South Carolina. Unfortunately, Michigan can't win the division without beating OSU, and hence every season is going to seem like a failure until that happens. If Harbaugh loses to Ryan Day at home next year, you will *really* start to hear the groans.

01/08/2019 - 12:13am Warde will feel the pressure…

Warde will feel the pressure if Harbaugh doesn't beat OSU and win the Big Ten sometime in the next 2 seasons. No way can you justify re-signing Harbaugh for $7M/year if that's the case.

01/07/2019 - 11:19pm Hold your horses. He's good…

Hold your horses. He's good but he's not #1 pick good. His numbers are well below Tua and Haskins. His receivers have made some good plays, and Bama's defense isn't quite as elite as it's been in the past.

01/07/2019 - 11:11pm This Clemson WR is good, but…

This Clemson WR is good, but he's not the second coming of Randy Moss. Does anyone doubt DPJ, Nico, and Tariq could make those kind of plays if given sufficient opportunities? Harbaugh and Pep watched Dwayne Haskins throw crossing routes to Paris Campbell for 4 quarters and had no answer to it, while they continued to run RB or FB dives up the middle.

01/07/2019 - 9:58pm Instead of paying Pep $1.5M…

Instead of paying Pep $1.5M a year to take up space and not fix our offense, how about we shell out for literally any of the coordinators, WRs coaches, or QB coaches at Oklahoma, Bama, and Clemson? Someone who knows more about football than me, how hard would it be to implement their systems with Michigan's current players?

01/07/2019 - 7:00pm Wow this really sucks. Now…

Wow this really sucks. Now OSU will know all Michigan's secrets, I'll bet we won't be able to get any pressure on their QB even with multiple NFL guys on our DL.

01/06/2019 - 2:25am I don't know if Pep is the…

I don't know if Pep is the problem, but after the last 2 years, it's pretty clear he isn't the solution. If the offensive staff doesn't have a major shakeup in the next few weeks, I don't have much faith that our dynamic duo will suddenly figure it out.

01/06/2019 - 2:14am I vaguely remember a post…

I vaguely remember a post Brian wrote in which he tried to rationalize the success of different offenses in the NCAA. When discussing Oklahoma, he said it was because they had "an NFL quarterback throwing to NFL wide receivers". Shea Patterson may not be Baker Mayfield (yet), but he will be an NFL quarterback one day. Tariq, DPJ, and Nico are all NFL wide receivers. If Harbaugh can't make it work with those tools next year, when will he ever?

Time is running out. Harbaugh's contract has 3 more years on it. I doubt he gets to 2021 without either an extension or parting ways (due to the recruiting implications of a lame duck coach), so he really only has 2 years at best. Better to figure it out next year when you've got a returning senior QB rather than enter a do-or-die 2020 season without Shea and possibly DPJ.

12/29/2018 - 6:57pm To the people who are aghast…

To the people who are aghast that this thread hasn’t been deleted: is there any point at which you’d pull the plug on Harbaugh? What if he goes 10-2 and loses to OSU next year? How about the year after that? Letting his contract expire in 2022 isn’t really an option since he wouldn’t be able to recruit, so unless he leaves on his own accord, something’s gotta give. But if 2021 rolls around and Harbaugh is 0-6 vs. OSU and hasn’t won the division, I really don’t see how anyone could justify giving him an extension. At that point just roll the dice with literally any decent up and coming spread coach.

12/29/2018 - 11:18am I agree it's primarily on…

I agree it's primarily on the coaches, as usual, but the players were undeniably flat too. I mean how on Earth did Michigan's DL not get even a single hurry, much less a sack? They've got two NFL DEs, one of them was the #1 overall high school recruit in the country. No matter what sort of blocking scheme OSU was running, I'd expect a modicum of pressure.

12/29/2018 - 11:09am I agree, I'm also very…

I agree, I'm also very interested in the play-by-play details and the assessment of who screwed up, who had a surprisingly good game, etc. Brian didn't even want to talk about the game at all on the WTKA roundup. I realize the site is free (rabble rabble), but the cynical, fatalistic attitude toward anything to do with OSU is still rather childish. 

12/12/2018 - 3:17pm I want this to happen so I'm…

I want this to happen so I'm going to choose to believe there is a shred of credibility to it. It's gotta be boring for Saban to just smoke the competition year in and year out. He literally has nowhere to go but down in the college world. At least in the pros he could be challenged and work towards something.

As for the wife not wanting to move away from Alabama... Don't get me wrong, I'm sure it's charming and all, but we're not exactly talking about La Jolla here.

12/08/2018 - 8:20pm That's part of my point. If…

That's part of my point. If it's this easy to get away with it, Michigan ought to be using bagmen too. But you can't deny that at this point, there is very little reason for recruits to turn down a Bama offer. Most of these guys assume they're going to be the best wherever they go, so they aren't worried about lack of playing time or whatever.

12/08/2018 - 8:01pm Stop blaming bagmen. Bama is…

Stop blaming bagmen. Bama is the greatest dynasty of this generation. Also, if Michigan doesn't have bagmen they're just naive. If you want to win, you have to lack morals and tell the NCAA to suck it. The only school in recent memory to get nailed for bagmen (OSU) got a slap on the wrist and then just went out and traded their national championship winning coach for a better national championship winning coach.

12/04/2018 - 2:47pm While I agree it would have…

While I agree it would have been nice to beat Meyer, it's sort of like when people said they wanted OSU to beat Maryland so The Game meant more. Sure it sounds good in theory, but Meyer is a really great coach.

12/03/2018 - 7:34pm Saban's dominance is pretty…

Saban's dominance is pretty unprecedented in the Title IX era. I think we'll have to see the governing bodies enforce more parity at the recruiting level if we want to make building dynasties harder again. I think it's easier to identify the talent these days due to the internet-ization of recruiting and the plethora of highlight videos, etc. out there. That's what's giving us Bama-Clemson every year.

I think it'll happen within the next 10 years when they begin paying the players and college football evolves to become a professional minor league. In some ways it seems like the natural evolution of every sports league. Someone figures out how to build a dynasty, the results become nauseatingly boring, and changes are made to try to even things out.

12/02/2018 - 4:44am I’m not the OP, but tbh, I…

I’m not the OP, but tbh, I do. Take baseball for instance. The original World Series made sense. You had two Leagues that didn’t play each other, so you took the champions and let them duke it out 1 on 1. Great! That’s perfectly reasonable.

Nowadays though, the MLB playoffs are a statistical abomination. It’s like, “okay we have 162 games, which is a pretty huge sample size, but we’ll only use it to pick 8 teams and then get a 10x smaller sample of games to determine who is the best.” Don’t even get me started on the NHL, where a hot goalie can take the 16th best team in the league all the way to the cup.

People like playoffs because they’re dramatic. There’s a reason the Final Four and the Super Bowl are what they are. But if your goal is to find the best team, it’s moronic. From a statistical point of view it’s downright criminal.

12/01/2018 - 8:51pm So you're thinking it was…

So you're thinking it was luck that Michigan's run game was shut down against one of the most pathetic run defenses in the Big Ten? These jokers gave up 300 yards to Maryland and Purdue. That's a complete failure on Michigan's part. Either the coaches or the players dropped the ball big time.

12/01/2018 - 8:45pm At some point you have to…

At some point you have to look in the mirror and consider whether it's Michigan that's not showing up for those games.

12/01/2018 - 8:42pm Man does this look pathetic…

Man does this look pathetic for Michigan's coaching staff so far... fire everyone except Harbaugh, Don Brown, and maybe Zordich, and then use the money to hire everyone on NW's staff except Pat Fitzgerald.

Imagine if Michigan could have gotten this kind of pressure on Haskins. Imagine if Michigan could have gotten that kind of big play on the ground. Imagine... that's all we can do, because we haven't seen it happen in real life for 20 fucking years...

12/01/2018 - 8:39pm Or maybe our DL should have…

Or maybe our DL should have showed up. Or maybe our defensive coaches should have researched OSU's O-line tendencies to figure out what to expect and how we could exploit it. But nah, OSU was gonna be a cakewalk, right?

12/01/2018 - 6:00pm I agree, the call on the…

I agree, the call on the field should have stood. How many times do you see players grab the ball on a fumble recovery and it slips out? A lot. Players jump on it and have it squirt out from underneath. I’m sure in all of those cases you could slow it down and find one frame in which it looks like the guy had his hands on the ball. But that’s just stupid, and most of the time they don’t do that. It’s ironic because when it comes to receiving, especially in the NFL, you have to hold onto the ball until the play is over in order for it to count. But for a fumble recovery, you only have to have it in your hands for a tenth of a second? What?

11/29/2018 - 12:35am This is the kind of take…

This is the kind of take that sounds good because humans like stories and narratives, but it doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. Michigan nearly won in 2016 and could have won in 2017. OSU won the former on a coin toss call and the latter on the arm of a garbage Michigan QB. The other two years the DC laid an egg, kind of like Meyer laid an egg against Clemson in 2016. One of these years Michigan is going to win this game and the narrative will change again and everyone will rationalize why it had to happen that way.

11/29/2018 - 12:26am Chase Winovich tweeted “Man,…

Chase Winovich tweeted “Man, what a run” after the game... I’m probably reading too much into it but I’d say that falls in line with the all talk no walk mantra. What a run? They won 10 games against mediocre teams. It was nice but it’s chopped liver against OSU’s yearly filet mignon. The basketball team knows what an actual run is, the football team doesn’t know what one looks like since they haven’t seen one in over 20 years.

11/27/2018 - 8:42pm OSU and Oklahoma aren't…

OSU and Oklahoma aren't going to lose. But if they did, I could see the committee putting Georgia in before they put Michigan in. If Georgia also got blown out, I still think it would come down to OSU vs. Oklahoma. If all 3 got completely utterly blown out (0% chance of happening), Michigan might have a shot.

11/26/2018 - 9:35pm I agree with your latter…

I agree with your latter point, although I also think playing ND was stupid given the circumstances. We bent over backwards for them, just to give ourselves the hardest opening game in the country. Doh.

But yes, something went seriously wrong against OSU this year that can only be explained by bad scouting and scheming. It happens occasionally--OSU themselves got defenestrated by Clemson 2 years ago. But this staff is getting paid too much for it to happen in the most predictable game possible. The staff has got to know that nobody really cares about MSU, Wiscy, or PSU. Throw all your chips in the basket and get the OSU monkey off your back and then worry about everything else.

11/26/2018 - 5:57pm It's truly beyond…

It's truly beyond comprehension. The worst people ever, gifted one of the most amazing sports runs of all time. The only college football run of the last 50 years that has been better than the last 18 years of OSU football has been the last 11 years of Alabama football.

OSU gets lucky because God loves them and hates Michigan. The reasons for this cannot be known in this life. But there is no other explanation.

11/26/2018 - 5:54pm This would be my strategy…

This would be my strategy too, but there is a way for Satan to make it even worse for you. OSU wins in excruciating fashion, but fails to cover. Like in 2013 and 2017. Then it's a double whammy.

11/25/2018 - 6:46pm Recruiting plays a role but…

Recruiting plays a role but some undermanned 2013 and 2015 MSU beat some stacked and heavily favored OSU teams. Scheming is a big part of it. OSU out-schemed Michigan in 2015 and again this year. Somehow Michigan was completely unprepared for what OSU threw at them. You'd think they'd have learned by now, but they really haven't. Harbaugh and Don Brown really thought they could treat this game the same as the rest of them.

11/21/2018 - 5:37pm I went in 2012 and 2016. I…

I went in 2012 and 2016. I got face value ($197) tickets off the alumni exchange to go this year. We'll be driving up the morning of the game.

Both times I went previously I've gone in full Michigan garb and worn a Michigan flag as a cape. Didn't have a problem either time. Maybe it was worse previously, but the only thing I've experienced is trash talk (which to be fair, I both dish and receive). Maybe it will be different if Michigan wins. Nothing would please me more.

11/20/2018 - 3:30am 1. 5-6x per week, used to be…

1. 5-6x per week, used to be 10x per day but life happened—no disrespekt to those who live fulfilling lives but still check the blog every hour though :) 

2. 5 now, which will no doubt quickly rise to a 10 after kickoff

3. In the Toilet Bowl itself

4. The rational side of me says a loss would be disappointing but this team way overperformed my expectations, so no. The emotional side of me says there can be no successful season without beating OSU and you might as well ask me if I’d consider thermonuclear war a successful outcome

5. Yes but all bets are off for The Game. My fan memory extends back to 2001 and only 4 times has Michigan scored over 31. They are 2-2 in those games and 0-13 for the rest. Also it’s Urban Meyer, one of the great offensive coaches of all time. Unless Don Brown has cooked up one of the greatest defensive plans ever, I think they will have to score more than 31 to win.

11/01/2018 - 10:13pm I remember being incredibly…

I remember being incredibly pissed about MSU always getting away with this. I vividly recall the 2013 MSU vs. Notre Dame, when MSU got called for like 7 DPI penalties and bitched about it even though they were all legit. MSU was literally holding and committing DPI on every single play, just daring the refs to keep calling it.

All I can say now is Michigan needs to apply the same tactics with regard to our OL and offensive holding. Come to think of it, maybe that's what they've been doing...

10/21/2018 - 11:11pm The 1-loss Bama scenario isn…

The 1-loss Bama scenario isn't even that bizarre. They could lose to LSU, or they could lose in the SEC Championship game. Then there's Clemson, Notre Dame, and the SEC Champion. I've already seen people on Twitter advocating that Alabama get in as the 4th team over Michigan in those scenarios. It doesn't make any sense to me, and I think the precedent is against it, but that's where we are at this point.

09/03/2018 - 3:14pm The offensive line issues,…

The offensive line issues, dumb penalties, and clock management all just baffle me. Why didn’t Harbaugh have these problems at Stanford? How did he beat #1 USC at the Coliseum in his first year, while here we are in year 4 with no clear signature win?

09/02/2018 - 9:33pm lol no way is he fired if…

lol no way is he fired if they go 10-2. No way is he fired this year period.

Personally I’m ambivalent about it—I’m not sure Harbaugh can beat Meyer even 25% of the time much less 50/50. Who can, other than Saban? So no point in going after someone else.

At the same time, Harbaugh’s offense just looks archaic. And the team continues to make boneheaded decisions. If Harbaugh can’t beat Meyer between this year and next, I’d throw the money cannon at Gus Malzhan.

09/02/2018 - 12:28am That sounds about right 

That sounds about right 

05/17/2018 - 6:37pm I've been to 7 Big Ten Stadiums

Here's how I would rank them:

1. Big House

2. Kinnick

3. Camp Randall

4. Memorial Stadium

5. Toilet Bowl

6. Beaver Stadium

7. Spartan Stadium

Though I am obviously biased, I do think the new concourse at Michigan stadium combined with the bowl layout makes it the best I've ever been to. Kinnick is an easy number 2--also very aesthetically pleasing and the stands go practically all the way up to the field (I honestly think Michigan should either raise the field or lower the stands to make the atmosphere more intense). Camp Randall and Memorial stadium I would put on similar grounds. Ohio Stadium is objectively okay but the stands in the upper decks are ridiculously steep. Beaver stadium and Spartan stadium are just ugly hunks of concrete and metal. If we're going entirely by intensity of the atmosphere Beaver tops the list. Louder than any other place I've been, and the endzone upper deck looks incredibly imposing from the field.

05/16/2018 - 12:05am Aging dynasties

Jordan didn't do squat until those dynasties peaked and fell. Heck, the 2004 Pistons were better than the 1990 Pistons, and I don't think the 2004 Pistons would make it past the East finals today. And please, please do not call the 90s Knicks a dynasty, that's just insulting.

The whole "MJ never lost in the finals!" thing is just stupid... is losing before the finals better than losing in the finals or something? MJ was 1-9 in the playoffs before Scottie Pippin joined the Bulls. Which also happened to be the year Phil Jackson was hired. Truth be told, what is too often lost in this debate is the fact that Phil Jackson coached 3 separate dynasties in multi-championship runs. The Bulls were thoroughly mediocre until Jackson took the helm in '89. MJ was great, but if you think he could have done it without his support cast you are lying to yourself.

05/15/2018 - 11:36pm Always will be?

This is the kind of logic that makes me roll my eyes in this whole debate. If you're coming into it with the opinion that Jordan is the greatest basketball player there could ever possibly be, you are wrong, and you are clearly biased. A big part of MJ's apparent greatness stems purely from his mythos at this point.

05/10/2018 - 1:40pm As much as I hate Ohio...

I think Jordan's tenure is incredibly romanticized by oldtimers. He struggled mightily against the Celtics and Pistons until those dynasties aged and fell apart. The Lakers were similarly winding down just as Jordan was reaching his prime.

Compare that to today, where the Warriors are clearly an all time great dynasty. Lebron would be aiming for his 6th straight if not for that. Warriors-Cavs is today's Celtics-Lakers. Jordan lucked out in that there was a big void (for whatever reason) of grade A dynasties. The '90s Knicks and Jazz are a clear step below today's Warriors.

As for defense and hand checking, it's overstated. The rule changes since then have made it immensely easier to defend the lane and shut down isos. MJs style of play was ideally suited for the time.

04/30/2018 - 10:23pm I second 2014 Utah

That was when the bottom really started to fall out. Blown out at home in a rainstorm, which delayed the game in the 4th quarter, after which the stadium was empty save for me and my dad and about 500 Utah fans.

The 3-game losing streak of Utah, Minnesota, and Rutgers was when it was clear we were back to square one. I honestly don't think there has ever been a more hopeless stretch of games at any point in the last 50 years. At least in 2008 we had hope that Rich Rod just needed to get his offense established.

04/30/2018 - 10:22pm Also negated any real hope of a bowl game

Since the only remaining game on the schedule was in Columbus.

04/20/2018 - 2:12am Over-exaggerations abound

Drunken assholes are going to get drunk and be assholes regardless of whether they drink their alcohol before or during the game. I was at the OSU game in 2012 (pre-alcohol) and 2016 (post-alcohol) and honestly it was the same. Beers are like $10 for 12 oz so it's not particularly easy to get drunk on stadium beers anyway.

Not to mention you used to be able to bring freakin' kegs into Michigan Stadium back in the glory days. Somehow the place didn't burn down. I don't really care whether Michigan chooses to ever sell alcohol in the stadium, but the idea that it'll cause the stadium to devolve into drunken revelry is frankly puritanistic. It's just beer, not magic maniac juice. I would hope our fans can manage to drink beer like normal adults. It annoys me to no end when people act like the university would make itself look bad by selling beer. As if Michigan can't trust their fans to handle their liquor responsibly.

04/18/2018 - 2:42am I'll also plug for google flights

Love the extremely intuitive and fast UI. Love the way they plot flight prices  ("price graph") over periods of time so you can ID what's the best day to leave/return. Even better, since I live near multiple airports and often want to fly to locations with multiple airports, it lets me search for the best flight based on all the available combinations. I've found it to be way more seamless than expedia, hipmunk, kayak, etc.

04/16/2018 - 4:39pm Great ideas all around here

My top three are:

1. Jim McElwain humping the shark

2. Beilein water gun

3. Brian eating hot dog

04/14/2018 - 6:46pm Average?

At a closer look, below average for Urban at OSU is like 2 losses total, so I personally hope his program performs way, way, way below average.

04/14/2018 - 6:41pm Pathetic

Utterly pathetic that Michigan's best diss against an OSU coach who has beat them 6 straight times is, "Well we beat him in the 2008 Capital One Bowl when he was coaching Florida."