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Date Title Body
01/06/2019 - 12:13am AL BORGES

AL BORGES

01/04/2019 - 5:14pm I might take senior Taco,…

I might take senior Taco, too. But Clark played very well for Michigan.

12/02/2018 - 11:37am Maybe not. But neither were…

Maybe not. But neither were the Willy Horton ad nor his comments about the Civil Rights Act his best moments. We all have ups and downs, and they should all be examined, even after we die.

And for what it's worth, I tend to believe those moves were cynical political ploys more than his own personal racism. But the fact that they happened allows for speculation. Shame, because, like I said, he was the best Republican President I've seen.

12/01/2018 - 8:07pm He also spells it “colour”.

He also spells it “colour”.

12/01/2018 - 8:06pm Everyone is overlooking two…

Everyone is overlooking two very problematic aspects of his legacy today:

1. His last action as President was pardoning many people involved in Iran-Contra, with a likelihood that this was done to protect his own involvement from coming out, and

2. His criticism of the 1964 Civil Rights Act during his 1964 Senate run. Either it displayed his own racism, which is potentially supported by the Willie Horton ad, or both were cynical political moves made to cater to racists.

Even still, he was the best Republican president of my life time, and I’m not that young.

11/29/2018 - 10:13am I told you so. (Not that he…

I told you so. (Not that he’d be All-Conference, but that he’d be fine.)

That said I also told you that I had less confidence in the RT position than I’d ever had for a position at Michigan. You win some, you lose some.

11/29/2018 - 10:10am Both, but the biggest…

Both, but the biggest culprit was the scheduling. He had to face good players in his first start, at a new position, on the road.

If we played ND 3 weeks in and he played just as poorly, we’d rightly be calling that game a weird blip instead of an event he needed to improve from. I also think he wouldn’t have played as poorly if he had a few games under his belt.

11/26/2018 - 4:14pm tl;dr. Still coming to terms…

tl;dr. Still coming to terms with gott being tot.

11/26/2018 - 3:04pm “To live is to suffer, to…

“To live is to suffer, to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering.” — Nietzche

11/26/2018 - 2:14pm “If we believe in nothing,…

“If we believe in nothing, if nothing has any meaning and if we can affirm no values whatsoever, then everything is possible and nothing has any importance.” - Camus

11/26/2018 - 12:58pm “Ohio has plucked the…

“Ohio has plucked the imaginary flowers on the chain not in order that Michigan shall continue to bear that chain without fantasy or consolation, but so that it shall throw off the chain and cull the living flower.” - Marx

11/26/2018 - 12:12pm Quit complaining about good…

Quit complaining about good writing, free or not.

A lot come for the analysis. A lot come for this kind of thing. Because it’s good.

11/26/2018 - 12:10pm It was originally Buffalo…

It was originally Buffalo Wild Wings & Weck. Beef on weck sandwiches. 

11/26/2018 - 12:06pm I’ve not believed in God or…

I’ve not believed in God or the supernatural for many years, if I ever really did. I’ve even been what some call an anti-theist — I don’t like the idea of an all-powerful being.

But after that game, I really wish I could believe. And I’m kind of hoping there is a God.

This would give me something to do for eternity — fight the bastard who’s in charge of this thing.

11/23/2018 - 9:06pm The last time Jon Runyan…

The last time Jon Runyan played left tackle against Ohio State, the Michigan RB ran for 313.

11/17/2018 - 7:58am Huh. Never realized your…

Huh. Never realized your name was UM in KS, I always pronounced it “You Minx”.

11/16/2018 - 10:11am Say a stupid team like the…

Say a stupid team like the Jets doesn’t like his combine interview, or there’s an injury concern, or whatever. There’s no doubt that they will then pair that concern with him quitting on his college team to shield themselves from criticism if they don’t draft him.

So, I doubt that they actually care, but that won’t stop them from pretending they do if it’s expedient to them.

“Don’t be mad at us, we knew he was good, but look at all these red flags!”

11/13/2018 - 11:20pm Inertia is appropriate. In…

Inertia is appropriate. In physics, inertia is the property of matter which causes it to either remain in a state of rest or motion unless acted upon by an external force.

11/12/2018 - 12:28pm No, but he is the head of J…

No, but he is the head of J.I. Harris & Associates. So, not very far removed.

And even if it isn’t outright corporatism, it is oligarchic. Not much better, in my estimation. 

11/12/2018 - 12:20pm Yes, that’s the joke. Maybe…

Yes, that’s the joke. Maybe we can do better. But let’s not make the perfect the enemy of the good.

11/09/2018 - 12:07pm Dunno, but it’s doubly…

Dunno, but it’s doubly effective because we have a defense that causes a lot of short drives on the other end. So the opposing D not only has to handle our long drives, but doesn’t have much time to rest in between the drives.

11/08/2018 - 5:25pm UFR is the shit, straight up.

UFR is the shit, straight up.

11/08/2018 - 5:24pm I’ve been beating that drum,…

I’ve been beating that drum, but he has looked good even late in games. Then again, his weakness has always been in protection and we haven’t trailed late and been in passing mode. That’s where I’m afraid his feet might get a bit heavy, and misses in protection are usually worse than misses in blocking.

But I’ll also disagree with Brian on his movement in general. Yes, he moves well; very well for his size. But that just means he would move even better AND he would keep his power as a drive blocker at, say, 320.

11/07/2018 - 3:10pm It’s not me that doesn’t…

It’s not me that doesn’t understand statistics in this case. You seem to have lost the forest for the trees. Those models (S&P, etc.) are an effort to quantitatively decide what’s happened and what is likely to happen. 

But are you really prepared to argue that S&P is better indicator of the quality of football teams than actual football games? I feel like this is a satire of firejoemorgan.com and you’re arguing that statistical modeling should just replace the actual sport.

For a sophisticated statistician, you sure went right to the anecdotal evidence to straw man me into some untenable positions. Meanwhike, you just said, “Actually, [playing football games are] a pretty terrible way to determine which is the better team.”

Your position is bad. It is possible, maybe likely, that we are better than ND. But they have the best piece of evidence, an actual game of competitive football, whereas we have statistical models and transitive properties.

11/07/2018 - 12:25pm Because Notre Dame beat 12-1…

Because Notre Dame beat 12-1 Michigan.

You can’t be serious.

That win is more impressive than any of our wins.

It’s also a knock on us. 

And, of course, a really good way to determine which is the better team is by having the teams play and keeping score.

11/05/2018 - 11:23pm I also think this analysis …

I also think this analysis (and all similar analyses) suffer from one major confounding variable -- people never even attempt to control for the effect that being recruited by winning programs has on the recruiting rankings.

If people awarded stars based purely on observation, you could maybe read something into this. But recruiting stars are based largely on the offer list. So, kids who sign for Alabama get high recruiting rankings by virtue of signing for Alabama. We all know that whenever we sign a totally unknown, unranked, unscouted player, they come in at three stars, for example.

11/05/2018 - 11:11pm You don't think that was a…

You don't think that was a joke? I laughed.

11/05/2018 - 3:14pm Alabama, Indiana, Kentucky,…

Alabama, Indiana, Kentucky, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, and Utah still have straight ticket voting.

I’m not sure where North Carolina has come down on it — I believe they’ve done away with it legislatively, but I think there’s a fight there as well.

Perhaps interestingly, each of those states is controlled by the same political party, and polls have demonstrated that party line voting helps that party in those particular states. It looks like the party leadership in those states does not care enough about its citizens to assure that the citizens remain well-informed. 

11/05/2018 - 2:33pm It’s not the one bad game…

It’s not the one bad game. It’s the lack of a good game.

I don’t think we’d be hopeless if he had to play, but that’s admittedly more of a feelings thing than anything based on evidence.

11/05/2018 - 2:16pm The MI state legislature has…

The MI state legislature has thrice done away with party-line voting. Twice, statewide referenda overruled the statutes, and it’s on the ballot again.

You wouldn’t strike me as the type to be against this kind of direct popular sovereignty with respect to other issues. The voters of Michigan have consistently been in favor of the party-line voting option.

11/05/2018 - 2:12pm I might have been the person…

I might have been the person most high on him in the entire readership, and he’s outplayed my expectations. 

11/05/2018 - 12:45pm States’ Rights. If the…

States’ Rights. If the voters of a state want to have straight party voting, cool.

But I do find the push against straight party voting strange, in that it is just limiting the voter’s options. If someone feels that no extra information is needed than the candidate’s party affiliation, why remove that option? Everyone else can proceed as we currently do.

Would you be in favor of removing party affiliation from the ballot altogether? That would seem reasonable according to your rationale above — a truly informed electorate is better than an uninformed one. Informed voters would know which candidate belongs to which party. It would force people to pay attention more than they currently do. Yet, I don’t think that’s a good idea? You?

11/04/2018 - 6:31pm You passed the test. That…

You passed the test. That was a shibboleth. No one in Michigan uses actual powder.

11/04/2018 - 1:42am I hate you.

I hate you.

11/02/2018 - 2:06pm Whoa. I’m listening to the…

Whoa. I’m listening to the audiobook of IJ at my desk right as we speak. Weird, man.

11/02/2018 - 12:25pm Unfortunately, he’s had to…

Unfortunately, he’s had to write elegiac pieces for Michigan football for a decade.

11/02/2018 - 10:14am Actual garlic powder or…

Actual garlic powder or granulated garlic?

11/01/2018 - 12:24pm I once heard Lloyd Carr tell…

I once heard Lloyd Carr tell his team that he would trade every offensive lineman on his team for just one of the opponent’s tackles. His line had something like 7 current or future All-Conference players in the meeting room and a couple All-Americas. They’d allowed like 5 sacks in a whole season and the running back led the nation in rushing.

Maybe Marcus is trying something like that, but he’s not the comic genius Lloyd was.

11/01/2018 - 8:03am I’ve always thought the…

I’ve always thought the point of the season was to determine who has the best season. I’ve never considered it a matter of determining the best team, and I think that’s a silly goal with 120 teams over 12 games.

With that aim in mind, and considering college footballs regular season is special because it wasn’t about playoffs for 100 years, I’d hate to see this weird sport become just another version of every pro sport, where the playoff primarily determines who got hot at the end.

There will come a day when a 2-loss team will win the championship, maybe even beating a previously-undefeated team in the final game. That day will make the whole stated purpose of the playoff a farce.

11/01/2018 - 7:49am Worse than my opinions on…

Worse than my opinions on Borges?

10/31/2018 - 11:14pm In a perfect world, the…

In a perfect world, the playoff is a flex thing that doesn't even happen most years. If there is one undefeated P5 school, they are champs. Two of them, have them play. Three of them, give the #1 ranked team a bye. If no undefeated teams, move to one loss conference champs under the same rules.

10/31/2018 - 11:10pm I used to watch an hour or…

I used to watch an hour or so of C-SPAN every morning before junior high and high school. They used to run some good interview shows in the mornings. I thought it was fun, but I am also an insufferable prick.

10/31/2018 - 12:13pm Who knows, man? But I have…

Who knows, man? But I have to say, if I was a quarterback, I’d quickly tell my guys to shut the fuck up and block someone. 

10/31/2018 - 10:10am Is that a thing now? Linemen…

Is that a thing now? Linemen audibly announcing they’re beat? Game’s come a long way.

10/30/2018 - 10:43am He’s contractually obligated…

He’s contractually obligated to attend these pressers, and he doesn’t see any value in them. He’s doing something he doesn’t want to do and doesn’t believe in. It’s that simple.

This leads to answers like, “We practiced, watched tape, and lifted weights.” I think that’s the best answer I’ve ever heard.

 

10/30/2018 - 12:18am It's use is to be the 2nd…

It's use is to be the 2nd best technique (out of 2).

I'm a bit doctrinaire on this issue, as you might be able to tell. 

10/29/2018 - 11:52pm I don't doubt that, last…

I don't doubt that, last year, the pulling guards often got caught up in the wash on power when running the drop step. I'm actually kind of arguing in favor of that. I'd rather have Onwenu get caught up on Mason's defender in the above-clipped video than what actually happened. If he was using the drop step, he would have been in position to move the guy, and maybe Higdon can make a play. Instead, he gets no movement on the guy, still doesn't get to the 2nd level, and Higdon has no chance.

It all goes back to first principles -- block the first level as best you can, and get the running back to make a play on the 2nd level. This is why, even if our guys were getting caught up last year, we still ran power pretty well, because the first level was blocked.

I'm also being facetiously strident here. If we keep running the ball well, it's all good. I just cannot be convinced that this is the better technique under any situations which are not 100% optimal, as drawn up on the chalkboard.

Maybe if everyone else throws a perfect block and the defense plays it absolutely straight up, the crossover is marginally quicker through the hole. But those plays are few and far in between. Indeed, we've seen an alarming number of plays in which our power pullers cannot adjust to a kickout block. Our tight ends, for all of their strengths, are not great blockers at the point of attack, and so our guards will have to be able to make those kickouts on a regular basis. And that's only one eventuality in which the drop step is the better option.

I'm only partly joking when I say that I am confident that I could convince Warriner to change his mind if he let me bend his ear for a minute. It's physics.

10/29/2018 - 11:21pm You'd have a bigger problem…

You'd have a bigger problem if he got rocked back into you and you had your legs crossed over each other. Ass over teakettle you go. 

It's nonsense, and I won't have it. 

10/29/2018 - 11:20pm Yeah, the crossover is used…

Yeah, the crossover is used for when the lineman expect to lead up into the hole, like on power o. Theoretically, it lets him get his eyes on the linebacker, and also allows him to keep his shoulders square to the line, making turning into the hole easier. You couldn't run this technique on a short trap, or a kickout, because your shoulders wouldn't be facing your target.

And that's one of the main problems with using it even when running power! On something like 1/3 of power pulls, the pulling guard will not get to the man he's designed to block. The rule on the pull is to clean up anything that comes free on the way to your block, because it does you no good to pass up a first level defender trying to get to the 2nd level. This happens all the time -- someone misses a block, they have a run blitz on, etc. And if the fullback gets lost in the wash, you've got to make the kickout block. This is near impossible if your shoulders aren't facing down the line.

And on the other 2/3 of power pulls, in which you actually can get to your target man, the crossover step puts you in a tough position -- your center of gravity is high. Try bringing your legs together without popping up. That linebacker comes downhill hard, and you're not in optimal position to hit him. 

It's a matter of physics -- it is easier to turn up into the hole if you take the drop step and turn down the line than it is to turn out and make an emergency kickout block when you take a crossover step and face the 2nd level. 

I urge you all to stand up where you are and do a demonstration. Take your first crossover step (I know they call it other things, but I refuse to use euphemism here. Your feet cross over, something no lineman should ever do) and now imagine someone flying through the hole. See how difficult it is to get depth with your second step and turn your shoulders out to get him (see the clipped play above, where Onwenu can't get him and Higdon is stopped short)? Now take a drop step, and imagine someone flying through the hole in exactly the same way. You are facing right at him. He's dead. Now, imagine no one there -- see how easy it is to plant your left foot, turn your shoulders a bit, and lead through the hole? 

Warriner is a good coach. Alabama is a good team. This technique is 2nd best, period. Even if the Good Lord came down from on high and told me to run the crossover step, I'd offer to sacrifice my only male child instead. 

10/24/2018 - 2:05pm If your avatar was still…

If your avatar was still sexybits of your wife, you wouldn’t have gotten that kind of reaction.