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12/08/2014 - 10:24am Meyer had great talent when he arrived

It was a much different situation than the team Rodriguez inherited. If Meyer had Sheridan and Threet and those running backs and recievers it wouldn't have been a fast turnaround either. Talent is a critical factor. The good thing for the new coach at Michigan is that he actually has some pieces to work with on both sides of the ball.

12/04/2014 - 7:11pm Thanks for the reply alum

I get what you are saying. For the most part other than this year, Mullen's offense at MSU hasn't been amazing. And I get that. My opinion is that there are reasons why he hasn't had a dynamic offense at MSU until this year.

I only used 2014 to show the weaknesses in FEI and S&P as a statistical barometer for whether or not an offense is elite. I liked Georgia Tech's offense and South Carolina's offense and I watched those teams play several times. Miss State had a much more explosive and better overall offense than those two teams and it wasn't very close. So having Miss State sitting in the 20's is kind of crazy in my opinion. Mississippi State was a top ten offense this season I have little doubt of that. Now for whatever reason they slid down to the 20's in advanced metrics, as you explained it might have to do with many different statistical inputs but I find it hard to believe that Miss State was 22 and Georgia Tech is number 1 in OFEI. It just doesn't add up for my personal evaluation of those teams. Georgia Tech had a nice offense but they would have been crushed by some of the defenses Mississippi State played this season. I find the rankings highly suspect and for that reason I just encourage readers to really dive into not only statistics but watching the game films of these teams.

Now the question becomes, based on whatever statistical or visual data we choose to look at, does Mullen have what it takes to be highly successful at Michigan? I totally understand how some people would not be overwhelmed by Mullen but I am just giving my opinion as to why he would be successful here. You have to take a lot of factors into consideration about his time at Miss State. 3 factors stand out to me.  Poor overall talent, no QB, and tough competition.

First his overall depth and talent was very poor when coming to MSU. Maybe not as poor as some schools in the entire nation but very, very poor for the SEC and particuarly the SEC West. The recruiting classes could be ranked mid 30's but compared to the rest of the powers in the SEC that's very poor. It's not always the raw numbers but the context of the numbers that's most important. It's no wonder he couldn't pull an upset for years in this conference, he was at a major talent disadvantage and has only now gotten some good quality talent and depth into the program.

Second I think he finally has a QB. Prescott is miles better than anyone else he has had at Miss State and that is because it's very difficult to pull big time recruits to MSU. His offense looks very good with a quality signal caller. His offenses prior to 2014 had varying degrees of success but there were a couple years I liked his offense even without a real good QB. However as you have said alum, his offenses were by no means dynamic. I think his offense was finally dynamic this year as he had an experienced, talented QB. Prescott would also be coming back, as do most of their skill players, so I think 2015 will be a big year for their offense if Mullen stays.

Now this last factor is extremely important and that is competition level. Miss State plays in a loaded conference. The problem that advanaced statistics have is comparing teams despite the teams not playing the exact same competition. Miss State plays in the toughest conference in college football and had two of their hardest games on the road. This really effects statistical output. The advanced metrics can guess how much it effected their overall numbers but I would have to say they are not getting the formula correct if they have a team like Georgia Tech ranked number 1 in OFEI. The comepetition factor is huge when you are judging a program like Miss State, they just are simply at a disadvantage when competing with the big boys in the conference. Perhaps Mullen is just now turning the corner and changing the culture at Miss State and building something special, we will see. It seems he believes he can make Miss State a consistently winning program which really could be a problem for Michigan's chances of hiring him.

I think he is a slamdunk hire and will be highly successful but I can see why others wouldn't believe that is the case. Alum, I think you did a great job of explaining why he could very well not be successful at Michigan. I think it's important to explore all of the factors in assessment of these coaching candidates. Hopefully U of M is doing this type of thorough evaluation and coming up with a list of people who might be available if either of the Harbaughs aren't available.


12/04/2014 - 2:18pm Thank you for the diary, well done

It's always great to look at the data from many angles. That being said, in my opinion, FEI and S&P are lacking what it takes to see the whole picture especially in the Mullen's case. There are flaws in all advanced stats. It doesn't mean you get rid of them but you need to use them in addition to the more generic stats such as total yards, scoring, yards per play etc. You have to really pay attention to who grades out highly on some of these advanced stats lists to see some of the flawed analysis in only using advanced stats to grade a team.

Looking over the FEI ranking for offense in 2014 leaves me scratching my head. I do not feel that in any way, shape, or form Mississippi States offense is behind Pitt, Miami, Navy, Georgia Tech, and South Carolina. There are others I feel should be behind Miss State as well but these are the teams I saw play more than 3 games. The biggest problems for advanced stats to overcome in football is in the calculation of the effectiveness of an offense versus the difficulty of the competition being played. This is a very difficult area to use stats to express. You can try and place values on competition factors but it is not anywhere near an exact science.

They are penalizing Miss State far too much in their rankings and not adjusting for strength of competition nearly enough.  I love advanced stats at times but they are also very unreliable at times. You have to really evaluate what you are looking for on a team by team basis. I would encourage all of the readers to look deeper into the FEI and S&P rankings and decide for themselves. I am however much more impressed by Mullen's offense than Pitt, UNC, Miami, Navy, and Georiga Tech. Georgia Tech is number one in OFEI. Come on now. UCLA number 3, Pittsburgh number 10. It's not terribly accurate to people who really watch these teams play.

S&P seems a bit more reliable but still has it's share of head scratchers. S&P teams ranked far too high include Ole Miss, Georgia Tech, LSU, Arkansas, Boston College, Pitt and Stanford. Again doesn't mean advanced stats have no place but do not make the mistake of placing your entire evaluation of an offense or defense on these metrics.

I don't think Mullen will leave MSU but he is an extremely impressive candidate. It's ridiculously difficult to win at Mississippi State. A factor that I think is not really given the weight that is needed in order to evaluate where Mississippi State is right now. They have an impressive offense and defense, Prescott will be back next season. He's building a very good program in Starkville which makes it very likely he would be successful with Michigan's resources and the level of competition in the B1G. The biggest problem for Mullen in the SEC is bringing in talent. He is getting the left over recruits after they are picked clean by Florida, Florida State, Alabama, Auburn, Georgia, etc. Mississippi State finally has a decent QB for Mullen but it took a few years for him to find it because of the inability for Mississippi State to attract guys he would have liked to have had. At Michigan he would be able to recruit regionally and nationally. He will be able to find more Dak Prescotts than Tyler Russells.

11/29/2014 - 10:11am RR is the step above

RR is an elite coach. If he stays in one place for a long period of time he continues to show he is in the class with the best of the best coaches. This idea that we now need someone who is special and above RR is silly. He was the upper echelon we were looking for and that's the humor in this situation. We gave an incompetent coach more time than a high quality coach.That's why this coaching search is important. If we have a quality coach that has bumps in the road at first you can't just throw them out in 3 years. Of course the situation they come into will be much better than the situation RR inherited here but the point remains.

We will not get anyone better than RR, maybe similar like a Jim Harbaugh but you don't really realize how good of a coach RR is.  RR is a coach in the mold of Chip Kelly, he is an innovator and will win with even decent players. His Arizona squad is not even near being rebuilt and they just won the PAC south. Maybe when he wins a national title at Arizona people will quit talking about fit and realize that the guy can flat out coach period. RR brings in JUCO players when they are highly skilled. There is absolutely nothing wrong with JUCO players if they can play. A lot of teams bring in JUCO players and some of them go on to play in the NFL. Talent is talent, RR knows talent and sees talent better than most. That's why he has found plenty of 2 and 3 star players who blossomed into stars. He knows the game period.

11/29/2014 - 9:59am I disagree

RR would have fielded a much better defense in year 4. There was more talent, more quality depth on the team, and also more experience. His offense would have been unbelieveable. The schedule we played against was very, very soft. It is no miracle that we did well that year and it definitely was not the incompetent coaching staff that made us good. It was the talent. Time allows coaches to put their people out there and RR did not have the proper time.

He absolutely should have gotten a 4th year simply because he did more with less than any coach I can remember. Our roster was not very good and full of youth because of the roster he started with. He kept improving and his track record was out of this world. You don't fire head coaches in 3 years especially when they are completely rebuilding an entire roster and have his track record of success. It was a monumental mistake, there is no denying that. His results now are just proving again how great of a coach he is.

He had no young playmakers on offense when he got to Michigan and his good defensive players were upperclassmen who were gone very quickly. He had to remake the defense with sophomores, freshman, and walk ons while at the same time revamping the entire offense. It was a huge rebuild and in no way can any coach rebuild that in 3 years. Especially at a time when the Big Ten was stronger than it was today. It was just a major gaffe by Michigan. In time RR will continue to win big and I think more of you need to admit your error in judgement about his coaching skills.

People who don't really understand coaching or talent evaluation will talk about fit but it has nothing to do with fit. Great coaches win everywhere when given time to install their systems and get competent players in place. It's just how it works. Fit is something people who are making excuses for their lack of foresight continue to talk about. "I was right, Rich Rod was a horrible fit and a bad coach at Michigan(one of the best institutions with the best facilities and a great recruiting base) but he will be a great fit and a good coach at lesser programs (with bad facilities and a poor recruiting base)".

Rich Rod would be winning big here by now. Skilled coaches succeed, just like skilled players succeed. They succeed in a vaccuum and in every situation given to them because they have skills and competence on their side. RR has coaching skills and competence in spades and that's why he will win everywhere he goes if he gets the full amount of time to rebuild.

11/29/2014 - 9:21am There is a reason why this is a extremely popular topic

This topic needs to be talked about so that Michigan does not repeat the same mistake in future hires. We let an incompetent coach have his 4 years and let one of the better college football coaches go after 3. It's kind of a problem.

11/29/2014 - 9:11am 3 years

That's one of the biggest problems. He only had 3 years. That reflects very poorly on U of M. You have to give coaches longer than 3 years and especially guys with the track record of RR. I mean that is without even taking into consideration the fact that RR inherited a poor roster and was installing an entirely new system. It obviously was a much, much longer rebuild than 3 years.

11/29/2014 - 9:01am HA funny

The fact that you are posting Carson Butler, Greg Mathews and Brandon Minor as examples of talent he inherited shows how little actual talent RR had to work with.

11/29/2014 - 8:55am Rich Rod was not a bad coach at Michigan

You simply only look at the record when evaluating a head coach and use no other context in your evaluation. If you want to find the best coaches you have to look at their records and why their teams performed as they did. RR had to rebuild an entire program in his style. And he was given bad players to rebuild with. So what does this mean? It means not only were the players on his original team bad, but he would also have to go through the growing pains of young, inexperienced players that he brought in. It's a miracle to me that he ever even improved his record as the seasons went on. Add on to the lack of talent, horrible administration that undermined his every move and it was shocking to see any kids even wanting to come to Michigan.

I wonder why his teams performed badly against dominant physical teams like Wisconsin, OSU and MSU. Hmmm, do you think it might have had something to do with starting more sophomores, freshman, and walk ons than other teams around the nation? MSU, OSU, and Wisconsin were established teams with deep rosters full of talent and upperclassmen. Of course Michigan had no shot genius. No coach would have coached those Michigan teams to victories over MSU, Wisconsin, OSU, or Mississippi State. That Mississippi State team was much better than you are giving them credit for. No way is that the worst loss since 69, you are insane! Not only could he have kept his job after that loss but he absolutely should have kept his job. He is a great coach and is proving it once again. You and the administration at that time were just horrible at judging the quality of a coach.

RR rebuilt an entire roster full of players who got us to the Sugar Bowl under an incompetent staff. I would say that was a success. RR would have crushed teams in year 4 with that offense. His defense would have been much improved because that team had more talent. No RR was not a bad coach here, he just wasn't given time to show what he can do with a full roster of his players. He's simply a great coach who wasn't given a chance here.

Again, what does RR have to do to show you silly "RR was the wrong fit here at Michigan" people that he is simply a great coach anywhere? If he wins a national championship at Arizona was he still just a bad coach here who would never have succeeded?

11/29/2014 - 8:34am It is a true spread

RR would prefer running the spread geared towards the running game. The spread is used to get good athletes in space. It just so happens that during his time here, RR had one of the most gifted athletes in the country as his QB so he tried to call plays to take advantage of what his best player does well. He is doing the same at Arizona but Solomon is more of a passing QB, he isn't super fast but more of an elusive player who can evade the rush and make throws downfield. So people might say RR changed his offense but he did not. If he had Denard Robinson or someone like him he would be using his legs much more often. Similar to the way he used Pat White. Solomon is more like Shaun King. In fact one of the bigger issues Arizona has had this season is that Solomon is not taking advantage of huge running lanes created by the read option, he isn't especially adept at recognizing when to keep it. Thus RR is forced even moreso to utilize Solomon as a passing threat only.

Ohio State is the same way, Urban Meyer will use the spread to utilize his personnel. If he has a fast QB like Braxton Miller, you will see him running much more often. If he has an accurate passer like JT Barrett, you'll see more of a balanced attack.

11/29/2014 - 8:10am High quality coaching

It was an incredible coaching job to get that group of players to a bowl game period. He inherited a roster in shambles. There was no talented underclassmen, there was little to work with. It's a miracle he kept improving his record especially in a much tougher B1G conference than is currently in place.

He should have won 3 freakin games our first year, our team was horrible. Harbaugh won 4 freakin games his first year at Stanford. It's all about the quality of the players on the team. Stanford was actually much more talented than Michigan was in Harbaughs first year. I know that hurts some of the Michigan faithful but go compare rosters. Michigan had some bad, bad players on their team when RR took over. Improved record is only a tiny metric to use when evaluating the quality of a coach especially when they are entering a complete rebuild. There are many other factors to keep tabs on when evaluating a team other than just win loss record.

Many great coaches have losing records. RR is winning at Arizona. Let that sink in. He would have won here and won big. There is absolutely no reason that RR could win at Arizona and West Virginia yet not win here. What would it take for you to admit you are dead wrong? If RR wins a national championship would you finally admit RR would have won here given time?

11/29/2014 - 7:57am Not a mistake??

What does the man have to do before you admit your ignorance? Would RR winning a national championship at Arizona finally convince you that he can coach? Arizona has worse facilities, worse recruiting base, a better conference. What is it about Michigan that makes you think he couldn't win here? How in the world is firing a great head coach the right thing to do? He inherited a crater for a roster and was told to go ahead and install his system. He was given 3 years. Dumb.

We never were able to see what the man can really do. His team was still establishing some semblance of a roster in year 3 because the entire program needed to be renovated. He did not fail here. He was getting better and establishing a solid, youthful roster. His players won a Sugar Bowl. Do you honestly think this coaching staff was the reason we won the Sugar Bowl? You are delusional. It was a HUGE mistake to fire a great coach, get over it, admit you are wrong.

11/29/2014 - 7:47am And maybe you know little about football

Because all you can do is recite records and not look at the details of why he had poor records here. Look at the underlying reasons the team had a bad record. I'll give you a hint, check out the disaster of a team he inherited and the lack of talented underclassmen to build around. That's a COMPLETE rebuild and he wasn't even given 4 years. It's a joke and for you to look past that shows how short sighted you are. He had a bad record with bad players, such a revelation. That never happens does it Nick Saban in the NFL, Jim Harbaugh at Stanford. Great football coaches never have losing seasons! Fire him!

RR couldn't compete with established programs at Ohio State and Michigan State. Kind of hard to compete with MSU and OSU when you are forced to play incompetent players because you have inherited one of the worst rosters ever. How shocking! Any other wisdom to impart on us genius? RR could win 3 national championships elsewhere but people like you will still insist that he couldn't win here. The joke is on you though, you know that right?

11/29/2014 - 7:33am Fit??

There is no such thing as a proper fit when it comes to an elite coach. Either you let an elite coach build a program in their image or you don't hire the guy. RR would have been a great fit if given another year because he would have won and continued to win after that. Fit is some silly idea that gives an excuse to the administration for terminating a great football coach too soon. It also excuses the behavior of fans who just simply didn't recognize coaching greatness when it was right in their face. They will say he didn't fit but they would be wrong. Great coaches coach well and get good players to buy into their systems wherever they coach. RR was well on his way to winning big and some short sighted Michgan people didn't see it. That's ok, they were wrong but admit it. The media admits the error of their ways and will slowly recognize RR as the great coach that he is. Will Michigan fans admit their errors? Probably not, it's not easy to admit when you are dead wrong.

I want a winning coach, not some percieved ideal of what a Michigan coach should be. I just want the best coach possible and RR is one of the top 5 best coaches in the world. Michigan wanted to become modernized and more of a spread team when he was hired. He did not fail, he didn't have time to install his program. I don't at all see his time here as a failure. In fact I credit his wizardry with a Sugar Bowl title. The players he brought in were special kids to win despite inept coaching.

11/29/2014 - 7:13am Sweet lets talk records with zero context

Hoke only went 11-2 on the back of Rich Rod's players and a soft schedule. RR would have lit the Big Ten up in his 4th year I guarantee that. As players mature, they get better and better as we saw his players do. Even under an incompetent coaching staff.

Could you imagine how good Denard and Roundtree and Toussaint would have been in years 3 and 4 under a great head coach? Unbelievable how bad U of M screwed up.

11/29/2014 - 7:05am Of course his ST and defense got worse

He lost some of the only effective upperclass players he was given. He was playing freshman and sophomores all over the field out of necessity. He would have improved the offense, defense, and special teams as players aged and got stronger. You can't just improve an entire empty cupboard all at once. It takes time to get players to improve the crater that he inherited. Michigan was a mess and he brought in many, many good players. As time went on we saw how well he can identify talent.

Arizona by contrast was a better team from the start because they had more talent on the roster from the time he took over. Yeah there wasn't much but much more than the disastrous roster Michigan began with. At least Arizona had some talented underclassmen to help the transition. Michigan had a few talented guys but most were juniors or seniors. RR had very little to work with and had little talent to bank his future on. So he had to go out and play freshman, sophomores and walk ons to fill holes. That is not a winning formula and that is the reason the defense got worse. Yes GERG was a disaster but not nearly as disastrous as the talent on the roster. No defensive coordinator would succeed with the underclassmen we had. Mattisons defense had more talent and played an easier schedule. He was not some magic coach.

11/29/2014 - 6:49am He didn't fail

He wasn't given time to rebuild the nightmare of a roster he inherited, let alone change the personel to match his coaching philosophy. The funny thing is that he preached patience from day 1. So many failed to listen and understand the state of the roster. Sad.

11/29/2014 - 6:35am Yes we were foolishly impatient

You should have talked more about impatience in your post. Michigan screwed up royally. Like they fired a top 5 coach type of screw up.

Rich was establishing a program in his style. He didn't have the players to run his system yet. He would have won at least 10 games in year 4 since he actually would have a few juniors on defense and offense. His teams were extremely young. He was forced to field very young teams because there was such little talent to begin with. Name some impact players that Michigan began with when RR was hired. I'll name many more talented players that RR started with at Arizona.

The cool thing is that, like Purplestuff and I said wayyyyy back when he was fired, RR will continue to win at other places and show how great of a coach he is. There will be excuses by people who claim it was a bad fit at Michigan but in reality they know little about football. Rodriguez is simply a stud coach that will win if given time and the ability to recruit. If RR can win at a perrenial losing school like Arizona without even completing his rebuild, he damn sure would be winning big time in this crappy B1G conference.

10/03/2014 - 1:59pm Wrong

Not could have turned U of M around. He absolutely would have turned Michigan around given time. Even with the undermining of everything he did. Yes he is that good of a coach and that will be proven in time. Nothing Michigan fans can do now but sit back and watch Rich Rod turn Arizona, a really bad football school, into a top 25 team consistently. It will happen and it could have been even better at Michigan but he was not given time. And that is why it was Michigan that was a failure, it is completely on them. RR will admit mistakes and all coaches make them but he was given no chance, the problem was Michigan.

He was rebuilding the roster and it takes time! I can understand fans who have little knowledge of football and just want to see "winz" over MSU and OSU without evaluating the roster RR inherited but there is no excuse as an institution to hire a man for as big of a rebuild job as he needed to complete and get rid of him in three years. It's laughable and it will be even more laughable as RR continues to show his coaching ability when he is given time to revamp a roster. Arizona is at the tip of what they will be when he actually has depth on that team. They have defensive issues due to depth and youth just as Michigan did but Arizona AD is completely aware of these issues and was all about giving RR the full amount of time to rebuild it.

10/03/2014 - 1:45pm A rebuilding team sucked? Thanks genius

Hmm wonder why his teams sucked? Oh because he was given one and a half of his own recruiting classes and handed a shitty team with no talent! That might explain why they had a horrible team. He rebuilt the offense in one year and you expected him to rebuild offense, defense, and special teams in three years? Good luck on those unreasonable expectations.

No worries Rich will rub your face in it when he is winning big at Arizona. Keep sticking to that idea that he couldn't win in the Big Ten though! The Big Ten is so much better than the PAC 10 guyzzz

Yay short memories and the ability to overlook important details when evaluating coaches!

10/03/2014 - 1:39pm You are right

Hoke stinks but that in no way validates RR as a coach. In time RR will again establish himself as one of the elite coaches when he takes the basement dwelling Arizona to new heights. He is already doing that with a team that barely has his own imprint on it right now. If you think this Oregon win and last years Oregon win were nice I told you so moments for Rich just wait and see what this guy can do when he gets his players. He was never given that chance here at Michigan and that's why Michigan will continually be laughed at when RR is winning at Arizona. He's a great coach whether Brady Hoke sucks or not and that's what matters.

10/03/2014 - 1:24pm Player retention

This isn't always on the coach. Sometimes things happen in kids lives where they want to move closer to home or get more playing time when they aren't ready to have it, etc. RR had one class full of attrition but that could simply be bad luck. He had plenty of talent on West Virginia and plenty now on Arizona. There were no attrition problems, but then again even at West Virgina and Arizona the roster wasn't in complete shambles when he took over. Had the negativity not been swirling so hard in Ann Arbor many of those kids who committed would have stayed I guarantee it. And as we have seen for sure now at Arizona, RR is much better at getting the best out of his players than this current staff. Judging how those players turned out at other schools and in other situations in no way tells how they would have done if they stayed with RR getting another year.

The saddest thing is that we see, from the page you just posted, how few of his own players he was allowed to bring in. Why would you hire a coach for a massive rebuild knowing there wasn't much talent left over on the last roster and then only allow him to recruit two of his own classes? It's just a complete slap in the face and a horrible way of going about business. He never had a chance. At Arizona he is being given a chance and in a few years it will pay massive dividends. Arizona fans know they have an elite coach and over time when RR is massively successful in a better league maybe then it will be time to acknowledge the colossal mistake Michigan made in running off one of the best coaches around.

10/03/2014 - 12:56pm His roster was atrocious

And it was slowly getting better as he was the coach. Of course he was losing games he had to rebuild the roster from scratch. It takes time. He would have been much better in year 4 and his resume going forward will continue to prove what a great coach he is. Keep watching!

Maybe one day you will admit how wrong you are about your version of history. RR could win a National Championship at Arizona and a lot of you fools will continue to think it just wouldn't have worked at Michigan. How do you people lie to yourselves so often? I don't understand.

10/03/2014 - 12:52pm Yeah it's a fact that Rodriguez is a horrible football coach

Keep telling yourself that. And when he wins a PAC title one day maybe then your ignorance will fade and you will finally admit to being completely wrong about him?

Oh and his offensive lineman were pretty damn good. Maybe he was trying to revamp many other positons that needed help because of the tire fire of a roster left behind by the past coaching staff. Hard to rebuild an entire offense and defense while still trying to replenish positions of luxury like our awesome offensive line. Rich Rod pretty much always has a great offensive line wherever he goes. Just because Brady Hoke and company can never field a competent offensive line does not mean it would have been an issue with RR as the head coach.

10/03/2014 - 12:37pm Aizona special teams have been good this year

Arizona is still building depth on defense. It's hard to turn around an entire team on offense and defense at the same time. Luckily for RR his roster wasn't in complete shambles at Arizona. It was bad, don't get me wrong, very bad, but nothing close to the crap he took over at Michigan. 

He didn't have a defense, special teams, or offense when he took over Michigan. The best players were on defense but he lost a few playmakers on defense that he had after the first year. He brought in a lot of offensive guys to install his system then had to rebuild the defense and special teams as well. It was a total rebuild. That's the difference between the slower rebuild at Michigan when compared to Arizona.

In the long run Michigan and Arizona would both flourish with a coach as great as RR. He can flat out coach period, there is no reason he would succeed long term at historically bad Arizona but fail long term at Michigan.  Arizona had time to give him, Michigan didn't and that's why Michigan is still floundering. They didn't see an elite coach right in front of them because they couldn't see past the bottom line. They never saw the improvement being made and the youth and roster issues that RR was dealing with.

It's like a team failing to look at OPS and WHIP and instead looking at only batting average and wins to judge players statistical output in baseball. You have to really know what you are doing when you evaluate coaches. RR results will continue to show how wrong Michigan was because his teams will always keep getting better as all elite coaches do when they have their systems fully installed.

10/03/2014 - 12:12pm RR is a GREAT coach so your argument is flawed

Why in the world do you people think RR couldn't be good at Michigan yet good at Arizona? It makes zero sense. Arizona is a doormat in the PAC year in and year out. If Rich Rod turns around Arizona and one day makes a Rose Bowl, he sure as hell could have done it at Michigan. Even with the backstabbing at Michigan, Rich Rod would have won at least 9 games in his 4th year. The schedule was softer and his offense would have been ridiculously good.

Rich Rod is a much, much better coach than Hoke but that isn't even the point. The point is that RR is a very high level coach period when compared with anyone. He is going to again prove that with his long term results and when he does I hope people can finally quit spreading this moronic myth that somehow he couldn't win at Michigan. The Big Ten is terrible, especially now. RR just never rebuilt his roster even close to what he wanted it to be. At Arizona he will be able to do so and I guarantee the results will speak for themselves. Keep in mind that Arizona is at the tip of the iceberg of where they will be. They still have very poor depth on defense and that is changing the longer RR stays.

10/03/2014 - 11:35am His recruiting was really good

Recruiting would have been even better had he not been on the hot seat since he stepped in. Problem was the roster he inherited was so decimated that it takes a few years of good players to build depth at each position. He had to completely revamp the entire program and they still fired the guy in 3 years. It was a terrible decision and when RR really gets Arizona going with his roster rebuild, then he will be laughing even louder than I am sure he is already. It doesn't take a genius to see how good of a coach RR is. He is highly, highly respected by his peers and once he actually sticks to a team for more than 5 years, people that questioned him will see how truly wrong they are. Michigan is obviously the problem here.

By the way, 4 and 5 star recruits as judged by recruiting services are not the best guage of talent. RR consistently finds lower star players who can play. Why? Because in addition to being an innovative coach he is also an incredible talent evaluator. Scooby "two star" Wright was the one creating havoc all game long and forcing the fumble to seal the game there at the end. He is one of the better linebackers in the PAC.

10/03/2014 - 11:20am Wrong

He will never suck as a head coach. His results sucked because he inherited an atrocious roster with personel that did not fit his system. It was a complete rebuild. When RR gets his system in place, like any other elite coach, he dominates. And when he begins dominating when he gets his roster rebuilt at Arizona you can thank me for reminding you how good of a coach he is. Believe me this isn't the last time Michigan faithful who wanted RR fired far too early will look like morons for not seeing a great coach when he is right in front of their eyes.

10/03/2014 - 11:00am Thanks for this denial filled clarification

Salvatore your post is pretty funny. You know that right? I've read your completely unbiased clarification and I still say that there are not 10 better teams in college football than Oregon and it was in Autzen. It's a pretty impressive win, the best so far this year and will be at the end of the year as well. Not only was the game in Autzen but a blackout game reserved for the teams Oregon was especially focused on this season. Oregon is an elite program and continues to be year in and year out. Rich Rod has prepared a team in Arizona, with inferior talent by a mile, to beat Oregon two years in a row. Let that sink in. Oh but Oregon wasn't fully healthy for the game! Ok cool, any more excuses? Arizona wasn't fully healthy for the game and they sure as hell have not had the chance to stockpile talent anywhere near Oregon. Name 10 teams that go to Autzen and beat them.

You say that RR is nowhere near Saban in terms of coaching. Let's put it this way. What exactly would it take for you to admit Rich Rod is an elite coach? Does he have to win a National Championship at Arizona? A Rose Bowl? Keep in mind Arizona is a perennial doormat in the PAC and has never ever even been to a Rose Bowl. Their fan base is laughing at Michigan right now because they know what an absolute dream it is to have gotten RR to come to their school. They know he is elite and I just wonder what it will take for stubborn Michigan fans to see it. Let's get the responses from you all now so that there will be no excuses as to the greatness of RR as a coach when he builds his program up. Let's set the bar so there will be zero excuses when you see what he will be accomplishing.

03/14/2011 - 1:32pm I have no idea what Chris

I have no idea what Chris Webber has done in his past. I wasn't there. Everyone claims he lied about the whole thing well I simply don't need to judge because I wasn't there when money was exchanged. I know that what we have heard is he took money as a teenager. He was a young poor kid that took  money! OH THE SHAME.

Meanwhile the NCAA and U of M profit immensely off of talented athletes like Webber. And they want HIM to apologize for mistakes he made as a kid. If you don't see what's wrong here that is pretty sad too. So continue to demonzie a kid who made mistakes, I'll stick to blaming the adults who should know better.

03/14/2011 - 1:29pm Wow so Webber had two working

Wow so Webber had two working parents so he msut have been middle class right?? Bullshit! He was poor and you need to check YOUR facts. He was given a scholarship to attend Country Day. It has nothing to do with the amount of money he could afford to pay.

Quit making the university to be the victim. They didn't have to give him a scholarship or profit off of Webber either but they did. Don't turn a blind eye to the hypocisy in sports. Sure Webber made mistakes as a teenager but he was surrounded by LOTS of adults making bigger mistakes by their own wrongdoings. Ed Martin didn't have to tempt a young, poor youth to take money but he did. Place a ltitle more blame on adults who should know better.

03/14/2011 - 1:18pm It's unfair to a shitload of

It's unfair to a shitload of people that Chris Webber was merchandised by the university for their own gains? How is that unfair for you? Were they selling your jersey in college? You can't compare Chris Webber to the average person attending a university, it's just an apples to oranges comparison. If people are pissed about it, then so be it. It's just not fair to the student athletes being exploited.

Chris Webber has no time for a job in college being an athlete at his level. Between classes and practice and games and travleing there is no time for him to maintain a job. Webber could have paid his entire college tuition with a quarter of the amount of money he generated for the university. Why doesn't the university do away with athletic scholarships and let him have a portion of the money  he earned. You would see the unfair amounts of money that colleges gain off of student athletes of his caliber if they allowed this.

03/14/2011 - 1:10pm If you don't see the hypocisy

If you don't see the hypocisy and immorality of universities pocketing cash raised by the likeness of college athletes that's fine. You're wrong but entitled to your own opinion. There is an ethical dilemma here and you don't need to dig too far to see it. I can't really understand how you don't see it to be honest.

And yes discussing how laws can be unethical is something that is valid discussion. Maybe segragation is extreme comparison but you missed the point of the comparison. The idea is that just because a law is a law doesn't make it ethical. Also just because you follow implore people to follow laws that are unethical doesn't make it right to do so.

03/14/2011 - 1:04pm @gobluesasquatch

You are missing the boat on this one. Chris Webber and men's basketball merchandising makes CONSIDERABLE PROFIT! The overall athletic department does not make profit simply because of expenses for all of the sports. This does not mean that Webber and athletes of his talents do not make the bulk of this money for the university. Without men's basketball and football programs where would the other sports be? You think that they generate little revneue overall now, just take away the PROFIT that the men's basketball and football teams generate. Where would that leave the athletic department? You fail to include the amount of indirect money that boosters send to the university because of talented people like Webber and the impact they have on wins and losses.

Maybe the university should stop exploiting players by taking the money that the players generate and then distribute it wherever they want. If meals and training are payment enough then let the kids that make the large amount of money decide. Give them a portion of the money that they earn and let them pay it however they choose. The thousands of Michigan number 4 jerseys sold should have been part of Chris Webber's personal profit, they are selling his likeness. If college athletics wants to be fair then stop selling these young athletes' jerseys and likeness. They are taking profits that aren't paid back evenly.

Michigan recieves donations because of people like Chris Webber that bring respect and wins to the program. Yet we continue to compare him to regular students, well that's simply not fair. Webber wasn't a normal student at U of M, he was being merchandised. While he may not have had it as bad as Albom mentioned, he wasn't from a family with a lot of money. He couldn't afford normal things that most college students take for granted. When you have lots of money coming your way when you have been poor all of your life, it's hard for a TEENAGER to say no. Ed MArtin was an adult preying on him, let's place a little more blame in the adults who exploit kids, thank you.


03/14/2011 - 12:47pm No I won't consider an

No I won't consider an athlete of Webber's sport and stature as a resident. The university does not make the kind of money off of you that they make off of Chris Webber. I'm sorry but if you don't see the difference in the amount of money generated by a person like Webber versus someone working at a hospital then there is really nothing to discuss.

It's exploitation to sell and make the kind of proceeds that they make off of jersey sales and give meals and "training" as compensation. Training in basketball? Webber didn't need Michigan's training as much as Michigan needed Webber for wins and losses. There is not a fair exchange taking place here.

03/14/2011 - 11:24am The law is bullshit. You are

The law is bullshit. You are missing the point. There was a law separating black and whites at one time in America too, does that make the law right? Ethics are more important than laws.

If U of M and other universities are profiting and generating more revenue off of athletes than they are giving back then there is a problem so saying to disregard personal belief because of law is ridiculous. If people disregard personal belief then nothing would ever be changed. Laws could be put in place and no one would question them, is that the way the world should be run?

03/14/2011 - 11:07am Webber

Why would Webber want to be on this documentary when his image was rubbed through the mud over all of these years? He made mistakes when he was a kid and people continue to pile on a young man who was preyed upon in his youth. Ed Martin was a grown man that took advantage of a young person and people want to continue to discuss how bad of a person Webber is.

Why would Webber join a documentary where he was the dirty, shady player who took money meanwhile his buddies, like Jalen Rose, recieved money and never recieved one ounce of criticism. The school turned their back on Webber and he feels betrayed by everyone involved including the his "friends" on the Fab Five. No thanks on being part of that kind of film.

Oh and those who hate Webber yet love the Fab Five, you may not have even watched the Fab Five play back in those days. Webber was the absolute best player by far and all of those achievements that the Fab Five gained were in large part due to his contributions. Without him, Michigan would never have even been to two Final Fours in a row. While you place all of the blame on Webber, remember that without him all of the wonderful achievements were not possible.

03/14/2011 - 4:30am 30 K is a tiny fraction of

30 K is a tiny fraction of what the universities make on the college athletes. The fact that Chris Webber got an education is great and all but lets get real. I've seen 30, 000 number 4 Michigan basketball jerseys and I don't think they sell them for 1 dollar each.

When college athletics has to come clean for being dirty then Chris Webber should come forward. That's great that you paid for school but most academic students paying their own tuition do not come from the economic background that Chris Webber came from.  Webber was only a teenager when he was handed money, he was a kid living in poor conditions. Do you honestly think most kids in his situation say no thanks? And why do we place so much blame on a teenager in this type of situation and not blame the adults who tempt kids from these poor economic backgrounds?

The University of Michigan should be ashamed for placing so much blame on a kid put in the situation that Webber was put in. Saying that Webber needs to apologize is ridiculous. When are they going to apologize and return all of the money they made off of Webber? Hint: the amount Webber was paid by Martin could never approach the value that Webber had as an athlete at U of M. Forcing Webber to apologize is belittling and I hope Webber is above that. I would never get on my knees for U of M or or any other greedy college university that places blame on kids for accepting money while knowing damn well that they are profitting immensely on their talents.

The University of Michigan is an academic institution first and foremost, before they get all holier than thou and say how wrong Chris Webber is maybe they should confess to allowing unqualified academic students into their universities to make money by winning sporting events. Does Michigan have Chris Webber's best interests at heart when they allow him to study at a rigorous academic insitution for which he is underprepared? Wouldn't Mr Webber have been better served attending a university for which his academic talents were a proper fit? Oh wait he helps win games and with winning games comes money! If U of M apologizes for exploiting athletes then yes they can force Webber to come clean, until then forget about it.

03/14/2011 - 3:47am Banners

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.

03/14/2011 - 3:34am C Webb isn't the only one to

C Webb isn't the only one to blame for the penalties that were imposed on the university. Quit placing all of the blame on Webber, that's bullshit. 

Not like it matters anyways,  I'm sure Webber doesn't care if anyone at our university thinks of him as dead anyways. He is a very successful person beyond Michigan athletics. He doesn't need a hypocritical university that made many more dollars off of him, than he ever was payed by Martin.

Michigan is part of the NCAA hypocrisy in this situation. Let's distance ourselves from a person who made mistakes when he was a young kid and was preyed upon by adults who should know better. That's very classy! Hey here's an idea, how about Webber comes clean when Michigan returns all of the money they made on the number 4 Michigan jerseys they sold in the Fab Five era. It's ridiculous how many people hate Chris Webber and fail to understand that they have no idea what it's like to be a dirt poor teenager who is offered this kind of money.

03/14/2011 - 3:18am Ed Martin was the ass that

Ed Martin was the ass that was paying a poor teenager from the inter-city money. Martin knew the Webber family was not well off and how tempting gifts and money are to kids like Chris Webber. So many throw Webber under the bus and never think about the ramifications of being a poor teenager from the city. Sure he made a mistake when it comes to the letter of the law in the NCAA but to speak of Webber like he is a big asshole or the scum of the Earth is ridiculous when comparing him to the likes of the NCAA, the universities who profit off of these kids and the boosters who know how tempting money is to kids from poor backgrounds.

The NCAA is perhaps the most hypocritical organization in all of sports. They rake in millions of dollars from kids like Webber who play sports for their bottom line and give the players nothing in return. Then they condemn and wax on about how awful it was for poor, ghetto youth to accept large sums of money from adults.  Meanwhile the NCAA and it's universities sit back and do everything in their power to maximize their profits thanks to these same kids whom they are willing to demonize.

Lets not pretend like Webber was the only kid  that has ever taken money from boosters and then lied about it. What about some compassion for a kid who felt betrayed by an adult that he thought he could trust. People like Martin are parasites who feed on the temptations of poor kids from the ghetto. Unfortunately "friends of the program" like Martin aren't even the worst of those involved in college athletics. To me the worst of all are the NCAA and it's universities who continue to take in millions of dollars every year and demonize the Chris Webber's of the world who can barely afford dinner.

I hope Chris Webber never comes back or associates himself with the the University of Michigan for his own sake. He has become the fall guy for a situation in which he was preyed upon as a youth. The university and most of it's fans have criticized Webber to the highest degree and have no idea what it's like to walk in his shoes. Webber was a poor, inter-city kid that was preyed upon from an extremely young age yet no one mentions this. Great job U of M and other NCAA institutions for distancing yourself from poor young kids that have been paid while you continue to cash in on their talents. Continue to belittle athletes while you stuff all of that money in your pockets, seems not many are watching you. 

02/10/2011 - 2:49pm Most Michigan fans don't even

Most Michigan fans don't even understand the challenges that RR faced. How would fans of a terrible sports personality like Colin Cowherd understand? Not like they pay attention to the amount of underclassmen starting on defense. That poll looks about right to me in regards to how clueless most people who could stomach Cowherd probably are.

02/10/2011 - 2:32pm Romey you obviously must have

Romey you obviously must have forgotten about the inexperienced quarterback turning the ball over at critical moments in the game. That is what first year starting quartbacks normally do. They make mistakes and those mistakes were critical. Robinson will improve his decision making as he enters his second year as starting quarterback.

Also, I wouldn't say we had a veteran offense when most of the players weren't even seniors. There is much room for improvement even on offense although the improvement on the team will be most apparent from the defense. Starting freshmen and sophomores throughout the defense was the biggest problem.

02/07/2011 - 2:04pm When Rodriguez took over

When Rodriguez took over Michigan he had a terrible roster. Why ignore that fact and only judge on past records? It makes you look bad when you ignore important information. I don't care if Michigan won the National Championship the year before RR took over, the team didn't have the same players the next year. Are you that blind to ignore this MAJOR fact?

RR had to rebuild the Michigan program just as much as Hoke had to rebuild Ball State. They both took over terrible rosters. The difference is that you are stuck in the past history of the programs rather than the players they were coaching. It took more than a few seasons for Hoke to turn around Ball State. RR had the roster finally turned over for Michigan way before he reached a year 5 like Hoke did with Ball State. RR was ahead of Hokes pace on rebuilding. RR now has Michigan's roster set for big things. So when Hoke takes over and wins with his players, he can thank RR!


02/07/2011 - 1:35pm We didn't have a good roster

We didn't have a good roster when RR took over. Even if Mallett and Boren would have stayed the talent was very, very bad at the tail end of Carr's regime. Look at the junior and seniors on the roster by RR's third year. That will tell you enough of the recruiting that Carr did prior to RR showing up. You can't expect success when you have nearly zero production from the seniors and juniors on the roster.

By year 3 RR was relying nearly entirely on his own recruited players. Name one coach that has taken over a team where he could not rely on the previous coaches players. It's shocking that RR improved his record over the past three seasons with the terrible depth left from the previous coaching staff. He had to rebuild the entire team from scratch and had a winning record with the youngest team in college football. Pretty damn good job if you ask me.

Also you are a fool if you think RR's system only wins in "crappy" conferences. Oregon and Auburn beg to differ. The "crappy" Big East conference in Rich Rod's days destroyed Oklahoma and Georgia in bowl games. Guess the Sec and Big 12 are crappy too...

02/07/2011 - 12:59pm Tough but fair things like

Tough but fair things like his bowl game or bad defense? Yet you RR bashers ignore things like the youth of the football team or the lack of contribution from the players left from Carr's regime?

There is nothing fair in blaming the failures of the team on RR when he was never given a fair shot. Three years is not enough when there is little to no contributions from the upperclass players left by the previous coaching staff.

If Rich Rod wins big at another school and goes on to win a national title will dumb Michigan fans still think he couldn't win here or in the Big Ten? I mean really?? Hopefully people acknowledge the fact that he was rebuilding this program and didn't have the time to do so. If not, then I for one look forward to excuses as to why RR succeeded at every stop of his coaching career other than Michigan.

It's going to be funny listening to fans and media in Michigan rationalize why RR was successful everywhere but here without admitting the most obvious fact of RR's tenure as coach. He was given a shit roster and was never accepted from day 1 when he was the coach at Michigan. He was given a situation that would cause any coach to fail and yet he was still turning the corner despite all of the problems he faced.

02/07/2011 - 12:41pm Add a little depth into your

Add a little depth into your thinking GWU. The win-loss record was a result of the terrible depth that RR was given when taking over. It takes time to rebuild an ENTIRE football team.

RR isn't pouting and doesn't need to pout because he knows the truth about the situation. Your reasons for RR being fired are laughable when you aren't even taking into consideration the depth chart he was given. Most coaches who take over a team actually have decent juniors and seniors by their 3rd season.

RR was given a roster devoid of depth and talent and had to rebuild both sides of the ball. Name a coach who would have succeeded with the talent that RR was given. Name a coach who wins with a team full of sophomores and freshman starting throughout the roster. Good luck on that because you won't find one.  Keep on believing that the record is all that matters, it makes you look completely asinine.

02/07/2011 - 12:24pm Oh did Tulsa and Rice also

Oh did Tulsa and Rice also start a ton of freshman on defense too? Yeah maybe RR can jump on that train then so he can actually see a finished product on the field. Imagine that! RR coaching a team that actually has time to develop depth and experience on both sides of the ball.

Anyone else going to laugh when RR wins big at his next school and exposes these dumb fans for their lack of football acumen?

02/07/2011 - 12:06pm Bogeyman?

So it is all imaginary when people point out the issues that Rich Rod faced? He was given a depleted depth chart.  That's a fact. Sure that might sound like an excuse to you because you are biased. It's simply the truth. If you don't acknowledge the lack of talent inherited by Rich Rod then you are lying to yourself. That's ok, whatever helps you feel better but you're wrong.

Did his teams regress as you stated? Not at all. They got better as evidenced by their record and production. Did the defense regress? Yeah because he was playing more freshman on that side of the ball than any other team in college football. His teams continued to improve at a steady rate based on what he was working with.  Did you expect him to rebuild the entire offense AND defense in three years? Wait why am I asking someone who doesn't look at more than the win-loss record.

Sure we will have fans like Mackbru who sing the praises of Hoke when the defense improves. Just remember Michigan fans, Hoke will actually have a very deep defensive roster, with loads of young players to develop.  RR had no such luxury. Sure RR won't enjoy the fruit of the labor he put into rebuilding this thing from scratch but Michigan will enjoy success in large part to the roster put together by RR. Remember that when these young players are actually juniors and seniors. This is why it's very important to look at more than win-loss record when judging a coach.

To all the rational fans that do not have a bias against RR just remember this. RR will be rehired very quickly by another college? Why? Because he is a HIGHLY respected coach by people with actual football knowledge. When RR wins big again at some other school, even these Michigan fans with blinders on will acknowledge the disastrous situation he inherited at our great university. Until then we will have people with zero knowledge of football carrying on about how terrible of a football coach RR is. I for one smile at them and will have a big chuckle at their expense when RR wins big at another program.

01/06/2011 - 2:36pm Wrong. My first paragraph was

Wrong. My first paragraph was explaining how Rich did not fail at recruiting defensive backs. You stated in your paragraph that he didn't place the same amount of care recruiting defensive backs as he did quarterbacks. To me that is placing blame on Rich for the secondary issues. My first paragraph was explaining that I don't believe Rich was at fault or in other words I believe he did put care into recruiting defensive backs. He simply had a lot of bad luck with defensive backs but I don't believe had he taken extra care he could have changed the circumstances. I shifted the blame to what I beleive was a problem created by the previous coaching staff.

My point in the second paragraph is that you can only recruit so many positions at once. Sure he could have oversigned defensive backs but that would have depleted the depth at other positions. I find it hard to say he took little care in improving the secondary, he was just given a very poor depth chart and little time to improve it. Add to that injuries and I see "RR caring about the secondary issue" as one of the least of his concerns on being fired. There was just little patience by DB and Michigan to allow RR to let his players mature and develop.