Member for

9 years 1 month

Recent Comments

Date Title Body
10/22/2018 - 9:02pm Spectacular. 

"The villainy…


"The villainy you teach me I will execute—and it shall go hard but I will better the instruction."

10/09/2018 - 8:15am The timing doesn't make…

The timing doesn't make sense. Banned Books Week was in September.

05/18/2018 - 1:27pm No problem."Arsenal" is

No problem.

"Arsenal" is where guns and military ordnance are stored.

"Gigi" was a 1958 movie with Maurice Chevalier.

"Buffon" was an 18th century naturalist.

"Juventus" is Latin for "youthful".

"Arteta" is Spanish for "Wenger".


09/10/2017 - 11:28am It's a classless tradition

The only time I've been to an OSU - Michigan game was with my son, who was then about 10 years old, at the end of the Lloyd era. We lost on the final drive, a heartbreaker. 

After the game, the band was coming on, and the OSU team demonstratively took up a huge chunk of the field, blocking the band. They were prancing and preening, making it impossible for the band to do their thing, singing their song and dancing as their fans celebrated in the stands. I remember in particular one huge linebacker with long blonde hair (can't remember his name) towering over a Michigan band member and glowering until the band member retreated. It went on forever. At one point the stadium announcer actually requested them to leave the field, and they just kept on with their interminable display. I think the band actually just gave up and didn't do their prepared ending number, though perhaps they ended up doing it to an empty stadium as everyone left. It was obviously aimed at rubbing Michigan noses in it. Asshole behaviour.

If they do it after every game on their home stadium, that's fine. In an opponent's stadium, done quickly and mournfully after a loss, OK. Even after a win in the opponent's stadium, done quickly and inconspicuously off in a corner with traveling fans, that's OK if done with respect and if they leave the field right after the song is done. But that is not what I saw, and I assume that it is what normally happens. In an opponent's stadium after a heartbreaking loss, that is just asshole behaviour. I assume that was what it was like after the OU game last year as well. Damn right they deserve to have a flag planted in the middle of their home field. 

03/19/2017 - 4:13pm Needed: Wagner game highlight reel with musical background...

Ride of the Valkyries. Or maybe the overture from The Flying Dutchman.

02/08/2017 - 1:26pm I think what MD meant was...

That remark is often misunderstood. What Dantonio meant was that they only recruit students who write in nothing but uppercase characters.

02/08/2017 - 1:26pm I think what MD meant was...

That remark is often misunderstood. What Dantonio meant was that they only recruit students who write in nothing but uppercase characters.

01/22/2017 - 9:30pm Rum, Romanism...

Rum, Romanism and Rebellion!

01/17/2017 - 10:38am Or in some cases...

In some cases, they're playing monopoly rather than checkers.

01/09/2017 - 12:19pm Very true. Leveon Bell comes to mind.

Watching the Steelers win on the weekend, I remembered that Leveon Bell was a 2* recruit whose only offers besides MSU were from MAC schools.

01/08/2017 - 12:40pm Merci bien, mon chum.

Merci bien, mon chum.

01/08/2017 - 12:37pm That's why the title of the post was "N'est il pas:"

You got it! I'm overjoyed someone did.

But I was aware of the need to make the statement negative. That's why the subject line of the post was "N'est-il pas:"

01/08/2017 - 12:21pm N'est-il pas:

"Ici c'est Pep?" Si!


[Maybe the most obscure joke ever on this blog. But if Benjamin St.-Juste reads the thread, he will get it.]

01/05/2017 - 9:45am 18 year olds trying to impress other 18 year olds...

18 year olds trying to impress other 18 year olds will say stupid things. Most of us were lucky enough not to have them posted on the internet. 

Let's wish him well and move on.

01/05/2017 - 9:29am Clayton Richard, for example

An example from our backyard. Leftie Clayton Richard was Chad Henne's backup, and played well when he got the chance. But pitching in MLB was just a much more promising career option, and so he took that path. Since he's still pitching there, it seems to have been the smart move.

01/03/2017 - 11:06am Pretty clearly a dedicated fake-fan troll

There wasn't an indisputable-video-evidence problem with the specific post as such, but if you look at his posting history, he's clearly a concern troll masquerading as a Michigan fan. He joins up a week ago, plants a couple of of generic "Jim Harbaugh is the greatest" posts to throw people off the trail, and makes sure he adds generic "Yay team" posts along the way, but the only substantive posts subtly or not-so-subtly inject venom into a discussion and slag Michigan, Michigan players, and Michigan fans in a way that is evidently geared to leave a sour impression for anyone reading. Presumably he's already been banned enough times that he's gotten better at camouflage, but he's obviously a troll looking to spread poison.

"[I'm totally a Michigan fan but] Peppers sat this one out intentionally." [Repeatedly, including the accusation that Peppers' grimaces during warmup were faked.]

[During the FSU game]: "[I'm totally, 100% a Michigan fan, believe me why would I lie but] the senior leadership on this team is a disgrace."

"[I'm totally a Michigan fan but] Player x sucks. [repeatedly]"

"[I'm totally a Michigan fan but] Player y sucks. [repeatedly]"

'[I'm totally a Michigan fan but] the negging response to my obvious trolling makes me understand why everyone hates Michigan fans."

"[I'm totally a Michigan fan but] position group x is so awful that prospective recruit y will decide not to come here."




etc. Perhaps most of these individual posts might have been made by a genuine fan posting in a moment of frustration or passing bad temper, but taken together, the pattern is obvious.

Add to that the fact that his spelling and grammar are atrocious and his posting style reminds at least one regular poster of a previously banned troll. The use of the name of a prospective recruit in an offensive username and the disgusting, inappropriate avatar are just additional confirmation.


11/18/2016 - 5:16pm Do you mean he is...

Do you mean he is a headless trunk of stone? That we look on his works and despair?

I can see your point.

01/02/2016 - 8:12pm You shouldn't concede so quickly...

You shouldn't concede the point so quickly. Some of the soldiers under Henry V in the play are Welsh.

Witness the character Fluellen [mangled pronunciation - presumably intentional - of "Llwellyn"]. It is a running joke through the play that because of his accent, no one can understand what he is saying.

03/28/2015 - 3:55pm Now they just need a central

Now they just need a central defender named "Away".

03/25/2013 - 10:33am Doubtful

This is a non-starter. 

Sports is not a big deal in Canadian universities. Even in hockey - if you are a serious hockey player you will play Junior `A' or, if you want to go to school too, you'll accept a scholarship to a US university. (I played hockey when I was an undergrad at U of Toronto, and I'm not very good.)

Besides the football team using Canadian rules, there is also the issue of scholarships. There are very few athletic scholarships to be had at U of T. Many have academic requirements appended, and they are capped at $3,500 per year.

Of course, U. of T. may decide to change all that. But I don't see much of an upside from an administrative point of view. Massive big-money athletic departments like those in US universities bring as many headaches as they do benefits. If you already have one (Rutgers, Maryland) it might make sense to maximize exposure etc. But this is a choice between not having big time athletics at all versus making the investment of time, money, and revolutionizing campus attitudes to get big time athletics. 

Not to mention that if some misguided administrator proposed the bright idea of engaging U. of T. with athletics to the degree major American universities are engaged, the faculty and most of the students would revolt. It is just a different culture in Canadian universities, in this regard.

"Not only would you have fan support from the city of Toronto but a lot of fans all over Canada would cheer on the Varsity Blue’s.[sic]"

This writer clearly knows little of Canada. There isn't much affection for Toronto outside of Toronto. 


12/04/2011 - 7:26pm There is a very specific exception for graduate students

If you have completed your degree at one institution, and you still have eligibility left, and you are accepted into a program of *graduate study* (Masters or PhD, for example) then you don't have to sit out a year when you transfer.


I have no idea what the rationale is for this rule, but it gets used now and then. For example, when Ryan Mundy went to WVU from here he may have done this, though I might be mistaken on that one.

12/04/2011 - 1:47am Yes - D'Antonio looked very proud after that 2 point conversion

Yes - D'Antonio looked very proud after that 2 point conversion succeeded. And then, subsequent in time, he fell. I have this weird feeling that there's a saying in there somewhere.

12/04/2011 - 1:09am My favorite bit...

(Partly anticipated by Eve_of_the_rivalry above) was the fact that prior to this the announcers just couldn't shut up about the "riverboat gambler" D'Antonio. "Does that look like the face of a riverboat gambler?" blah blah. After he went for two. After he did the roll out and pass on fourth and short, etc. etc.

Well, there's a reason why more people aren't riverboat gamblers. Sometimes when you take chances it will blow up in your face. The two point conversion worked, the punt block failed in the way that punt block attempts often do. The cautious play would have been to trust his offence, which had been moving the ball and had scored a lot of points. Tell your special teams players not to go near the punter under any circumstances. He rolled the dice, and learned why riverboat gamblers so often end up broke.   

12/03/2011 - 9:54am You think what we saw in Rosenberg/Snider's...

You think what we saw in Rosenberg/Snider's "Practicegate" hitpieces from the Free Press was "sunshine"? 

12/02/2011 - 11:07am In theory, perhaps, but in practice news organizations....

In theory, perhaps, if news organizations could be trusted to use the information honestly. But in practice news organizations can distort material very effectively if they are in pursuit of a hit piece. We saw this in the Free Press "practicegate" investigations. It was evident at the outset, and became clearer with every published article, that Rosenberg and Snyder were looking for ingredients to support a hatchet job. They were requesting reams of material including internal emails, and then whatever information they got was presented in a slanted and decontextualized way, creating a distorted impression of the real situation.

See also the so called "Climategate" emails. Pore over thousands of emails from researchers to one another and you'll find some where people say things to one another like "[Scientist X] is up to his old tricks again. I'm never going to accept another of his dishonest articles for [Journal Y]". and "The way you set up the graph doesn't present your point in the most effective way - if you choose scale Z and initial year VVVV the picture is more compelling." My own emails contain lots of stuff like that - there are people in my subspecialty - as with any other - who are just dishonest and incompetent, and you get tired of their antics. [Fortunately or unfortunately, nobody has any money to make or lose from my research, so my emails are safe.] And you give friends an collaborators advice about the best way to arrange their arguments to persuade an audience. But in the hands of unsympathetic news organizations, that becomes "CLIMATE SCIENTISTS EXCLUDE OPPOSING VIEWS AND DISTORT THEIR DATA!!!!"

Don't get me wrong - from a legal point of view (though I'm not an expert) the claim of "protecting student confidentiality" here seems pretty far-fetched and I expect OSU will lose. But if I were a university president I would at least try to keep things like internal emails under my own control. 


12/02/2011 - 9:54am Not so surprizing

I would assume that the issue the amicus curiae brief addresses is the question of whether the information ESPN wants to get from OSU is protected from Freedom of Information requests. You cannot, for example, force schools to disclose student grades, or health information, or other things covered by confidentiality guarantees. OSU is arguing that these confidentiality rules should be interpreted broadly, ESPN that they should be interpreted narrowly. Of course an association of universities is going to argue for less exposure to FOI requests rather than more, no matter how the requested information is meant to be used. 

11/30/2011 - 12:19pm Yes it happened.

I remember it well - 2005 - the only UM-OSU game I've seen in person, there with my son who was about 9 at the time. Michigan had the lead, with a minute and change remaining, OSU had no timeouts, or just one, and UM had a fourth and three somewhere just over the 50 yard line in OSU territory. A first down wins the game, but Lloyd punts instead, preferring to pick up a sure extra 25 yards of field position. OSU storms down the field and wins, the key play being a long pass to a player who had stepped out of bounds and come back in.

OSU celebrates, and then as the Michigan band comes on, the Buckeyes march en bloc into the path of the marching band, block their way and sing one of their stupid songs to their section. (I assume it was Carmen Ohio, but I couldn't hear.) The announcer even asked them several times to get out of the way of the marching band and clear the field, but they just ignored him and kept on preening for their fans. 

So, to echo a common opinion: Buckeyes are the last people who should be complaining about a celebration showing a "lack of class".

11/28/2011 - 12:22pm Yes - If Miller could hit an open receiver

Mattson has done the best he could with the players available. They've improved spectacularly well. But the secondary is not Posey-calibre fast. So you can either leave a huge cushion, and give OSU medium-distance passes for easy short gains (that Miller doesn't have that much trouble throwing) whenever they want one, or you can try to take those away, accepting that Posey will often break open, and count on Miller only hitting a couple of those at best. That's what Mattison chose. And he was right. We gave up a couple of touchdowns on long strikes, but mostly Miller missed them. Including the one at the end of the game. Mattison made a calculated risk, based on the observed strengths and weaknesses of Miller as a QB and our secondary, and it seems to have been the correct decision.

But I'm no expert on football, so feel free to correct me. 



11/26/2011 - 9:26pm That was his motivational speech.

He kept it simple: Kids, after the year this team has had, people in Ohio will be ecstatic if you win this game. Your gold pants will be worth a fortune. Go Bucks!

11/26/2011 - 7:37pm They have a point....

I really think that meeting their team bus as it pulls in, unannounced and without warning, with police dogs to sniff them all for bomb-making material etc. was an incredibly classless thing to do. A player could have had a phobia about dogs, the dogs might have slipped their leash.... And generally it was a greasy way to get a cheap psychological advantage.


Oh, sorry. My mistake. That was the classy Saint Tressel. But calling Ohio State "Ohio" is of course much worse.

10/02/2011 - 2:39pm C'mon gang

I loathe Dantonio. But if he did in fact choose "The Waterboy" because Sandler looks like Fickell... well, that's pretty funny. I give him credit. 


(Plus it was educational - only a handful of their players knew that H2O meant "water". They might get academic credit.)

09/20/2011 - 1:44pm The contractual issue was really fabricated


Right out of the door we had signs that some newspeople were gunning for Rodriguez. Those "pay $x (huge number) if you take another job" clauses are legally very hard to enforce. You have to demonstrate that this sum is a plausible representation of the actual harm to you of the contract's being broken, so that the money can be represented as compensation for harm. Otherwise it would be closer to involuntary servitude, which contracts are not allowed to establish. That's why every single time in the history of coaches taking new jobs, the settlement is negotiated down to some fraction of the contractual number. I assume Brady Hoke did it, that's what Beilen did when he left WV, etc. Going to court just costs a lot of money for both sides and the result would be some smaller number. 


But this time, because all of the state of West Virginia was whipped into a state of outrage, not just about the leaving but about all sorts of bulls**t (OMG he shredded files! Yes, if they are confidential personal files with academic and personal information about athletes, that is what you are supposed to do. Are you going to put them in a caretakers bin out in the hall?) some elected judge decided to grandstand and insist on the whole amount. The ruling would never hold up on appeal, but it would be a p.r. catastrophe to drag things out (and expensive) so the U. said - look, just pay up and let's put this behind us. 


From this, lazy journalists got licence to make snide remarks about alleged "contractual controversies" every time RR was mentioned.


I say this not as any particularly huge RR fan, but to be fair: The spinning of that episode was an intentional hatchet job by people who had it in for him. 


08/25/2011 - 3:53pm Yeah, well...

I have a low opinion of Tressel, and I have no doubt he is guilty of far more than he's been nabbed for. But this Grantland piece is a hatchet job. Attack Tressel's many faults and flaws by all means, but be fair. One thing that has been true of Tressel from the outset is an apparently genuine concern for the development of his players as human beings. (Even with former players like Clarett - nobody would blame Tressel for washing his hands of Clarett long ago, but Tressel seems genuinely invested in Clarett's rehabilitation.) 

08/06/2011 - 10:27pm Journey isn't the only one

Journey isn't the only one with this problem. An English group called Paper Lace had a minor hit in the 70s with a song called "The Night Chicago Died". It starts "(Spoken - portentious voice) Daddy was a cop. On the East side of Chicago..." Which would be Lake Michigan. Always check a map when you're writing songs about places you don't know.

06/22/2011 - 2:45am Come on now.


"Will Rich Rodriguez be Missed?"
Of course not - nobody's going to actually *shoot* at him, or throw rocks.
05/31/2011 - 3:59pm Right on target: this is spin

There is no way to hide the fact that Tressel has been caught doing something very bad. And that people within the program are breaking the rules. What's the best possible PR strategy? Concentrate on one guy (suggesting that there was just one rule-flaunter) and present it as if Tressel's downfall was due to his failure to recognize the evil of that single guy.


So: Pryor is the Satan, Tressel is just such a noble and fine character that evil is beyond his comprehension: it was impossible for him to see that Pryor wasn't the upstanding young man that every last one of the other OSU players were. 


No, rule breaking in the program was an epidemic, and it was that way because Tressel made sure he could never be tagged with knowing anything. A strategy that worked brilliantly until now.

03/09/2011 - 12:12pm I'd add Robert Reynolds

The Reynolds thing was troubling not so much for what Reynolds did - he was clearly a bit of a  psycho, he had been a Cooper recruit - but because of the response. It was absolutely obvious what had happened. You could see the replays on the big screen, Alvarez was doing a "strangle" pantomime to the referee, and the Wisconsin QB's larynx was crushed to the point that he couldn't speak. Tressel, of course, pled ignorance, and said he hadn't seen anything. To the credit of the OSU fans, the athletic director was flooded with correspondance from livid alumni who were properly ashamed of what Reynolds had openly done on national TV. Cue the Tressel press conference: "Reynolds has apologized, but after watching the replays, a mere apology isn't enough. So I'm suspending him for the next game. (It was against a laughably weak opponent, I can't remember who, ensuring that he'd be back for the Michigan game where one of his first plays was to end Jason Avant's season with a dodgy rolling tackle that twisted Avant's ankle.)

The subsequent "apology" press conference was unbelievable - Tressel presents Reynolds, who appears accompanied by his pretty fiancée dressed up to look like the all American couple, properly modest and respectful. Occasionally the mask would slip just a glimpse, as when Reynolds would grudgingly acknowledge his culpability and then try to slip away by attacking the people who were complaining, as if they were unreasonable, on a witchhunt. ("It was only a couple of seconds")

The epilogue was that Reynolds and fiancée were indeed soon married, and just as soon after were divorced, with Reynolds charged with domestic violence. According to the estranged wife, it was not the first time, which I find easy to believe:

01/27/2011 - 9:18pm There have been a couple of other kids...

Sorry - don't know why the post was multiply duplicated.

01/27/2011 - 9:14pm There have been a couple of other kids...

Oh, yeah - Alain Kashama. Thanks. 

01/27/2011 - 9:08pm There have been a couple of other kids...

from that school in Montréal. I can't remember the name of one of them offhand - he was a phenomenally physically gifted kid at DE who never quite seemed to get it completely together but showed amazing stuff at moments. In particular I remember him taking a fumble away from Rex Grossmann in the Citrus Bowl against the Gatorzooks. The shotgun snap got behind Grossmann and this DE seemed to move at the speed of light to get it from him. 

01/27/2011 - 9:07pm There have been a couple of other kids...

from that school in Montréal. I can't remember the name of one of them offhand - he was a phenomenally physically gifted kid at DE who never quite seemed to get it completely together but showed amazing stuff at moments. In particular I remember him taking a fumble away from Rex Grossmann in the Citrus Bowl against the Gatorzooks. The shotgun snap got behind Grossmann and this DE seemed to move at the speed of light to get it from him. 

01/27/2011 - 9:05pm There have been a couple of other kids...

from that school in Montréal. I can't remember the name of one of them offhand - he was a phenomenally physically gifted kid at DE who never quite seemed to get it completely together but showed amazing stuff at moments. In particular I remember him taking a fumble away from Rex Grossmann in the Citrus Bowl against the Gatorzooks. The shotgun snap got behind Grossmann and this DE seemed to move at the speed of light to get it from him. 

01/27/2011 - 8:50pm My son plays soccer at Soony's former club, and...

This news had been going around a few weeks ago. But at that point it was reported that he was joining a second division German club. Anderlecht is a step up in class from that. He'll be missed - the rest of the team will have to solve some problems next season. But the career of a professional soccer player is pretty short, so he should take the chance when it's offered. 

01/27/2011 - 11:30am Can't evaluate the father's comment without knowing more...

"His father, Michael, said that Tate didn’t fail his classes, but instead was ineligible because he had two incomplete grades. He said that all Tate needed was a “chance” from at least one professor to make up the work."

Well, I've given a few incomplete grades over the years, and the dad's remark doesn't sound right. Giving someone an "I" involves the understanding that the grade can be converted. Presumably what he means is that Tate got a couple of F's because he didn't complete the required work. 

The U has very explicit policies on assigning "I" instead of "F". In particular, it has to be cleared with the professor *in advance*. Profs are not supposed to just give "I" grades if the deadline for grading has passed and work just hasn't appeared. Now it does happen that profs will cheat a bit, and give someone an "I" instead of "F" if the student seems to be going through personal troubles, or has been putting in a good-faith effort but has just screwed up, That's the reasonable and understanding thing to do, and it is simply humane to allow people to recover from troubles that come from familiar undergraduate stresses and mistakes. But this is against the letter of the rules, and generally comes as a bit of sympathy and human understanding toward a young person who has let things get out of control. If someone just blows off the work, and makes it clear that they couldn't care less, then I am not going to be enthusiastic about violating university rules to allow them to recover.  

But that said, I have no idea what the actual facts of the case are, beyond what the father has said, and Tate's on-the record pronouncements about just needing to show up.

A word of advice to all you young 'uns out there: if you might find yourself hoping that a professor will violate UM policies in order to cut you a break, calling his/her class a joke in a widely distributed newspaper is unwise.

01/26/2011 - 11:15pm Thanks for all your work on this

I expect this is the bad side of webblogging for a living. Good to know that a Michigan technical education is still serving you well.

01/24/2011 - 3:39pm It's inconceivable that UNC on that list would be Chapel Hill

I'm guessing maybe he got into one of the satellite campuses, like UNC Greensboro or Charlotte or Pembroke. That, or maybe UNC stands for University of Northern Colorado.


01/24/2011 - 1:28pm Didn't Debord do special teams and recruiting coordinator?

I'm pretty sure Debord did special teams (brought in the year after the Boccher (sp?) - Iowa disaster) and recruiting coordinator when he was brought back by Lloyd. I remember because at the time I was irritated that they didn't bring in someone with demonstrated competence in ST. But once he was around, that put him in a good position to bump Terry Malone the next season that the offence burped. 

01/24/2011 - 5:28am You could have added this one:

For all the people like me who were confident that RR would turn it around until finally the bowl game was the breaking point:

("Valerie" and "Vivian" are of course Dylan-speak for Mattison and Hoke. Those Minnesota boys can be obscure at times.)


Too much of nothing
can make a man ill at ease.
One man's temper rises
where another man's temper might freeze.
Now it's the day of confessions
and we cannot mock the soul.
Oh when there's too much of nothing
no one has control.

Say hello to Valery,
say hello to Vivian.
Give her all my salary
on the waters of oblivion.
Well too much of nothing
can cause a man to weep.
He can walk the streets and like most and boast,
but would he like to keep?
But it's all been done before,
it's all been written in the book.
And when there's too much of nothing
nobody should look.
Say hello to Valery,
say hello to Vivian.
Give her all my salary
on the waters of oblivion.
Now too much of nothing
can make a man a liar.
It can cause some men to sleep on nails,
it can cause others to eat fire.
Everybody's doing something,
I heard it in a dream.
But when there's too much of nothing
it just makes a fellow mean.
01/23/2011 - 8:28pm True, he grew up in Michigan...

But he went to that agricultural college in East Lansing. Even played football for them, but had a knee injury in the days before knees could be fixed. 


Scott Steiner, on the other hand, was a Michigan Wolverine!

01/23/2011 - 5:43pm 3rd string QB is for emergencies only

You can only bring the 3rd string in (before the 4th quarter) if the other two QBs are out.