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04/01/2016 - 9:46pm What's the feeling there about Bakich?

As an alumnus of Vanderbilt (undergrad) and Michigan (master's) I was really happy for Erik to get the job there. What's the perception of the job he's done so far there? (I'm guessing fairly positive, but I haven't really been following U-M baseball closely.)

05/23/2015 - 8:27pm Here


Post #3 seems to be the most accurate, except for spelling.

05/23/2015 - 5:55pm If it makes you happier, it's not one double elimination tourn

The double elimination tournament is over. Michigan won. Maryland also won their double elimination tournament.

The SEC went even crazier this year: First day single elim, then double elim, then semifinals and finals are single elim. In practice fewer games is preferable to tiring the staffs out and not having any TV coverage of the deciding second game.

It's horribly crude--full double elim is still haphazard, heck, the MLB playoffs are haphazard--but no more arbitrary than the NCAA tournament. You might breeze through your regional but then it's a clean slate; you might then get knocked out 2-1 in the SR by a team that also lost in their regional.

05/23/2015 - 5:48pm Great to see!

One game from the automatic NCAA bid. I'm a fan of Erik Bakich as well as U-M so I'm hoping he gets the job done and gets us in position for at large berths in future years.

05/23/2015 - 3:57pm Congrats to softball. Today can we get some baseball coverage?

I'm a little biased toward baseball because of Bakich's Vanderbilt connection (he was an assistant under Corbin), but U-M is just two games from making it to the NCAA tournament.

01/12/2015 - 9:05pm Careful with the Stanford ass-kicking machine

My other alma mater, Vanderbilt, thought they'd hired the creator of the ass-kicking machine, or at least the guy who built a defense kept shutting down Oregon. It hasn't gone well so far. Fortunately, Tolbert hasn't been part of David Shaw's staff, since it seems Shaw is not good at mentoring assistants.

01/08/2015 - 3:17am Fair enough, and I must add one word of advice:

Never count out Touchdown Tom.

12/07/2014 - 2:34pm College sports = really bad place to look for karmic justice

No evil deed goes unrewarded.

12/07/2014 - 2:27pm Pelini over Mullen?!?

Seems crazy. I'm surprised at the number of Michigan fans who apparently don't factor in the difficulty of recruiting at Mississippi State. State's gone 6-2, 3-5, and 4-4 in the SECW, which matches up against 5-3, 5-3, and 7-1 in the B1G, but State has done it with a worse recruiting base because Mississippi gets eviscerated by all the neighboring SEC schools.

12/07/2014 - 1:57pm Worst coach in the SEC West from March to New Year's

is Les Miles. Give everyone in the division exactly the same talent level and Les's lack of clock management and taste for weird negative-expectation gambles probably sinks him.

But wait! He won a national championship! And went to another NCG (against a Bama team LSU had already beaten)!

That does count for quite a bit, but recall too that 2007 was the flukiest confluence of events to get LSU into the championship game. More to the point, LSU is often very good because they recruit extremely well. Most good recruiters would do well in Louisiana, but Miles has done extremely well. That is part of the coaching package, and you have to give Miles credit for it. It more than makes up for his game-day coaching.

His program develops this talent well too, but so does everyone in the SEC West, so that's at best a wash.

12/02/2014 - 5:16pm NFL

I noticed a little bit of a self-censoring halt in the answer about the swim lane charts, about how some coaches are preparing for bowls now, or... oh, other things. (Like the rest of the NFL season?)

12/02/2014 - 5:14pm It doesn't hold up to close scrutiny

For example, my alma mater (Vanderbilt) somehow managed to defy physics by swinging way to one side around 1940 and rarely crossing the halfway mark since then. ;-) So I consoled myself with the thought that inspirational rhetoric is what's needed now, not deep analysis of trends in college football.

10/13/2014 - 5:10pm OONTS/TZ

It's nice how the TS/TZ simulates a little hi-hat.

10/12/2014 - 10:13pm Bacon's book?

I thought I read somewhere (like an old post here) that Bacon's book strongly implied it was determined before the Gator Bowl that RR would not be back. I suppose he might have lost the team between the end of season and the bowl in a way that was obvious to the powers that be without needing a result, but that seems unlikely.

10/09/2014 - 4:11pm Give me a break

The Vanderbilt administration gave him a lot of heat for recruiting the kids that led to this incident--supposedly the Chancellor used to meet with him until this happened, then gave him the cold shoulder, strengthening his resolve to leave (which, to be clear, would have happened anyway).

I grant that the rest of the SEC is by and large an ethical cesspool but let's be careful with the broad brush.

10/09/2014 - 3:57pm As perhaps the only Vanderbilt fan here....

I really miss his competent coaching and appreciate what he did for us--good heavens, I can't tell you how much I miss his competent coaching--but I don't at all miss wondering when his lack of integrity would lead to something like this. He wants to always be the center of attention, which is understandable for a major CFB HC, but now he's got what he wished for.

10/09/2014 - 1:57am Kelly HC at New Hampshire? What am I missing?

I see no evidence to support this assertion, but maybe I'm looking in the wrong places.

Wikipedia lists him as OC at UNH until and including 2006, his last season before UO. This source checks out: On Aug. 15, 2006, UNH described him as "Chip Kelly, the associate head coach and offensive coordinator at the Univeristy [sic] of New Hampshire...."

This SBNation piece strongly implies that Sean McDonnell has been the UNH HC from 1999 to the present.

Am I missing something?

10/08/2014 - 8:07pm On the hot seat with fans....

On the hot seat because Miss State fans like most fans generally have an inflated view of their place in the CFB universe. I'm just curious, was there any indications he was really on the hot seat with the MSU administration?

As an SEC fan, I've always thought he did a stellar job.

10/08/2014 - 5:19pm Here ya go

Yes, just line in Wolken's article, but stated pretty flatly. And Wolken is pretty reliable.

Oops, missed that the article was linked above but here it is again: College football gold mine.

10/08/2014 - 4:38pm Coach in waiting?

But Chip Kelly was a I-AA coordinator before Oregon, right?

However, you make me wonder if Stitt could be lured with a handshake deal that he bides his time for a little bit and then is first up for the promotion if everything goes well.

I don't think it's really realistic because then you have to hire a HC who's close to retirement. But if Les Miles got enough flak in Baton Rouge this year and wanted to save the alma mater before hanging it up.... no, now I'm just being silly....

09/30/2014 - 8:50pm Are 2PC really 50/50?

That greatly changes this discussion. I thought they were more like 41/59 on average.

Of course, for Oregon or Auburn they might well be 50/50, and for Michigan or Vanderbilt they might be 30/70.

09/30/2014 - 5:20pm Don't worry

He's not. As always, unsubstantiated. In the SEC they're pretty good about not leaving an audit trail.

Great coach though.

09/30/2014 - 5:18pm Ability and ethics

Mullen is a fantastic coach. Miss State fans, like Ole Miss, So Carolina, Vanderbilt, Arkansas, indeed, like most fans, all think their school occupies a higher place in the pecking order than it does. Starkville is just a dystopian college town in the middle of the cow pastures, very hard to recruit to, and they split a low-population state with the more popular Ole Miss who actually plays in a town you might want to spend an afternoon in (and is closer to Memphis).

Around the SEC there are strong hints that Miss State cheats (as does most of the SEC), all unsubstantiated, so... make of that what you will.

My first allegiance is to an SEC school so I feel like I have a foot in both camps here.

09/30/2014 - 5:17pm Lot more legitimate things

Agreed 100% on that last point. And good post in general. I'm just interested in understanding the game better, not adding to Hoke's bill of particulars, which is plenty long without game theory's help.

09/30/2014 - 4:36pm Game theory

Glad to have something to take my mind off the Hoke/Brandon mess.

I agree that down 23 very late in the game, you should go for two early. However, I disagree with, "always do everything as quickly as possible." The down-23 logic only holds because it's very very unlikely that you can win if the opponent scores anything else after you're down 16. If your team somehow got down 23-0 in the first quarter, you would want to take the +EV option (in points), which for most teams is to kick it.

I guess something like late in the 3rd quarter down 23 with a decent offense (but still well below 50% to make a 2PC) could be a borderline case--it depends on if you think there's a reasonable chance you can give up more points and still win.

Somebody check my reasoning here, please.

09/29/2014 - 12:17am HIPAA

Although I skipped pages 3, 4, and 5, one question I didn't see answered is whether the University can say anything about Morris's concussion status under HIPAA. I'm not suggesting they want to be transparent; I'm saying, even if they did, their hands might be tied.

"we're confident proper medical decisions were made" -- sounds like HIPAA vagueness.

But they do mention the leg injury, so perhaps that's in a different category or perhaps I'm barking up the wrong tree. Does anyone know?

09/29/2014 - 12:10am Interesting, yet...

Even if it turns out he wasn't concussed, though, letting him go back in the game without a concussion test seems criminal.

Hell, even if Dr. Hoke somehow knew he wasn't concussed by sight, letting a guy with a leg injury so bad that the announcers think he's dazed go back in the game is irresponsible, isn't it?

09/28/2014 - 4:02pm But the point is the enabling culture

Of course they're very different offenses. I think I was pretty clear about that, but maybe the scarred emotionally/physically comparison was over the top. But the culture that allows them could easily develop along similar lines. Is that too nuanced a distinction?

I don't think that Hoke wants to do harm, and I want to better understand the mentality that allows him to act like he did yesterday. Comparisons to other out-of-control cultures don't imply that the misdeeds were comparable, just that we can learn from their enablement and avoid our own (despite the differing root cause).

EDIT: I think this distinction is too nuanced. I'd probably delete my OP if I could even though I think we can learn something from looking at dysfunctional cultures. It's just too emotionally charged, and understandably so, to try to draw a lesson about org. culture without sounding like I'm comparing the deeds.

09/28/2014 - 3:11pm No authority to override the HC for player safety?

Then the culture of U-M football is screwed up, more than just winning and losing, and must be rooted out and rebuilt from scratch.

09/28/2014 - 3:08pm " idea what was going on.": Our Penn State moment

I'm headed for a probable firestorm, but I'll say it: I see parallels between where U-M stands today and where Penn State stood when the Sandusky stuff broke.

First, the obvious: They're very different issues, of course. PSU scarred kids emotionally for life. U-M, if this goes unchecked, risks scarring older kids physically for life.

Yet, here's why I can't escape the parallel: Paterno was the proud epitome of old-school values. I sincerely doubt that he ever intended to cover up child rape; he just, in a very intergenerational way, didn't understand why it required his immediate action. I am not saying that past generations would have been OK with those crimes, just that with each generation we have a better idea of the gravity of the situation and the need for immediate action. I don't think Paterno ever quite got that.

Hoke clearly is stubbornly old-school. He clearly pines for a day when people just played through injury. See his quotes about Gardner limping after OSU.

So I don't think he actually wanted to put a concussed S/A in the game, and I don't think he was cognitive unaware of the fact that Morris was stumbling around. I think he quite simply processed it as that Shane had "had his bell rung" (what a disturbing old euphemism) and just needed to play through it.

That doesn't quite explain putting him back in, but it's of a piece: If getting your bell rung requires stepping to the sidelines to get your bearings back, then a few plays later it should all be OK. I mean, that's the kind of toughness you want in your players, right?

I will be embarrassed for the University if they fall into the same sort of yes-manship that defined the culture at Penn State.



09/28/2014 - 1:45pm "Brady Hoke killed a guy"

I'm sure Brian or whoever set up that tag in 2011 had no inkling whatsoever that it would become so close to reality. I wouldn't care if he had the track record of Bear Bryant at this juncture. Letting him coach versus Rutgers is inconscionable.

09/28/2014 - 1:42pm You're not alone in thinking RR got a raw deal

But because 2010 was my first year caring about Michigan football (because I started school there), and because everyone was so adamant that RR was incompetent and that M could do so much better, and because there was this seemingly inevitable choice at San Diego State--why, he was even a Michigan Man!--I just kept my mouth shut and presumed those who knew more than me were right.

Then, 11-2. So clearly they knew more than me.

But I still wouldn't (and won't) be surprised if Arizona ends up in really good shape.

09/22/2014 - 2:36pm Totally premature interest in the next coach... is still valid

I suspect many of us would actually prefer to see a UFR of games coached by some of the top coaches who viably might take the Michigan job. (And not just dream candidates like Harbaugh; midmajor stars, too).

I mean, yeah, it's unseemly for the media to assume the incumbent's out the door after four games but we all know that's where this is headed. In some ways tracking would have as much relevance to the future of this program.

09/13/2014 - 2:20am Scurvy incidence on MGoBlog is down 23%, though.


09/13/2014 - 2:19am OSU / Addams

The OSU band video wasn't bad, but to really impress me they need to have Thing snapping around 2:45. (Bonus points if they managed to work Cousin Itt in there.) Ah well, better luck next time, guys.

04/25/2014 - 10:05pm I'm going to be really unhappy if it was Infractions Appeals....

and David Williams of Vanderbilt voted to uphold the penalty, but I guess we'll never know for sure.…

04/25/2014 - 10:03pm About the marching band full of assholes....

It's a great line, but regarding the NCAA, my understanding is there's no there there, no decision-making staff. What I mean is, NCAA staff is just sort of minimal investigative staff along with I guess other marketing (top notch!) and what-not. But the decision making is in the committees, and the committees are made up of people from member schools.

Alas, the Wetzel story tells us only that McGary "appealed the decision to the NCAA in early April." Unless the appeal was heard by the custodial staff or by the genius who came up with that marching band commercial, I have to think it was heard by some committee. Anyone know which one?

I also did not know that Lloyd Carr serves on the Committee on Infractions.

04/01/2013 - 1:36am Not an item I'd highlight in my portfolio

Although I'm sure even with those black-and-blue lookalike courts the craftsmanship of the wood is excellent and it's just the stupid Indianapolis bureaucrats or college administrators to blame for those monstrosities.

04/01/2013 - 1:34am With the joyless

With the joyless standard-issue black-and-blue NCAA courts throughout the rest of the tournament, the FF is the only time the court doesn't disgust me now. Seriously, why does every site need to look exactly the same?

03/31/2013 - 6:19pm Wichita State

Beat the team that beat OSU, among other reasons to pull for them up to the final.

03/31/2013 - 6:13pm But not these championship muppets

03/31/2013 - 6:10pm Best part of winning by 20

Bringing in the subs. It was crazy.

03/31/2013 - 6:07pm Conversely, I felt very much

Conversely, I felt very much part of the community when pursuing a master's at U-M. Something about autumn Saturdays in Ann Arbor does that. (I'll still pull hard for Vanderbilt the next time the two schools play, though. That really should have been the Gator Bowl matchup this past season.)

Now I'm in a doctoral program at another school that's been to a fair number of Rose Bowls, and I go to some of the games, but it's just not the same. No one in my cohort, even those who care about sports, goes to games.

03/31/2013 - 5:57pm I dunno, that sounds pretty crazy

On the Dial Global national radio postgame, they asked Beilein something about what he'd to do celebrate or have fun in Atlanta. He responded something totally generic, like, "I don't really know what to do to celebrate," but his tone expressed so much bafflement about cutting loose and having a good time that it conjured up images of the Beilein house with the grandkids when someone brings over subs.

03/23/2013 - 4:31pm Elite 8, I suppose

Closer to the same number of contestants  -- although it's really not comparable, because


  • Basketball tournament seeding is (at least putatively) based on merit, not tourism or TV draw.
  • Coversely, making the Elite 8 depends heavily on a 3-game sample of performance, not a season.
  • All eight Elite 8 teams are eligble to win the championship, but only two BCS teams are.
03/23/2013 - 2:25pm Havoc has indeed been wreaked

Nice win.

12/19/2012 - 1:41pm Which game did Alabama do this?

I don't recall them, as the home team in a bowl, electing to wear white shirts with crimson sleeves and crimson-outlined white (or silver, or black, or anything but crimson) numerals. 

I assume you're talking about the Pro Combat uniforms worn in a 2010 game against Mississippi State (and maybe sometime after that): 

Alabama pro combat


But Nick Saban has nixed the idea of anything more radical [1], proving that he doesn't like to land recruits and secretly hopes for his athletic department to wither away from lack of funds.


[1]Kausler, D., Jr. (2011, September 14). Uniform changes at Alabama? Nick Saban makes his feelings perfectly clear. I'd share the link but the spam filter said no.

12/19/2012 - 1:29pm What game was that worn in?

I'm actually from the state of Alabama and I don't recall ever hearing about Bama wearing that in a game. I could easily have been unaware though.

12/19/2012 - 12:54pm See above -- these sort of ARE the home jerseys

I'm unclear on whether U-M technically declined to be the home team or just elected to wear white as the home team, but either way, when you decline to wear the best uniforms in the sport to wear this, it effectively IS your choice of home uniform.

12/19/2012 - 12:48pm But won't this be the home uniform for this game?

As I understand from this thread, Michigan is the designated home team and elected to wear white, much like LSU, Georgia Tech, or the Dallas Cowboys. So for a game, at least, this is Michigan's choice for a home uniform.