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Date Title Body
02/21/2019 - 8:51pm All of a sudden, this is… All of a sudden, this is looking like a tournament resume. Fantastic job by KBA to make changes and keep the momentum moving after Flaherty graduated. Wish I could go to the State game coming up.
02/20/2019 - 5:39pm OK. But wasn't Beaubien… OK. But wasn't Beaubien sidelined this fall with an injury to her other arm? Maybe what she's dealing with is *not* having pitched year-round for the first time in ages? It looks like Storako is winning the #2 role. But she's not an elite prospect. A good one, glad to have her. But if you're taking someone who isn't on the elite lists and putting her in meaningful innings against ranked teams in her first collegiate experience? That's a big ask. So I'm not concerned by the pitching decline. I will be if Beaubien doesn't get back to her level from last year. We've definitely seen top pitchers have their careers derailed by injury. I am concerned about the lack of power. Four HRs in nine games, three of them from the senior catcher who wasn't a top recruit? That's definitely a weakness. We'll see as the freshmen get more experience whether that's something that will continue to be a problem. So far, Allan is the only player on the roster who has not appeared in a game. We don't hear about injuries with softball, so speculation is pointless. Just hope she can return.
02/19/2019 - 7:31pm I have to admit I'm…

I have to admit I'm surprised by this. The ratings indicate she's as good a recruiter as ever. Really bad luck that the power-hitting 1B frosh from last year - top ten recruit nationally - hasn't been able to contribute so far. Lots of pieces in place, though. I would also be surprised if they don't get right back in.

02/19/2019 - 7:27pm In the softball world, this…

In the softball world, this means she committed to Michigan last year, right?

02/15/2019 - 3:04pm I disagree. The late-season…

I disagree. The late-season issue can be boiled down to a couple of individual games over the last three seasons. Otherwise, it's just schedule. They should have been invited to the NCAA tournament when they won the NIT. That was just an awful miss by the NCAA committee and the team responded positively, despite losing their all-conference freshman in the first round.

This year, they're dealing with losing Flaherty to graduation and a wholesale top-to-bottom change in how they play. KBA is showing that she can coach to her players' strengths. I don't think they'll make the tournament this year, but they'll be close. I count that as a huge plus.

If she weren't always showing progress, I'd agree on the hot seat. But she is. It takes a long time to reverse mediocrity. Borseth started the process and KBA is continually moving the team in the right direction. I think it would a huge mistake even to think about letting her go.

02/09/2019 - 4:41pm Hmm. No Lou Allan in the…

Hmm. No Lou Allan in the first weekend. She's one with power, but missed or was recovering from injury most of last year. Hopefully she'll be back.

Storako is off to a nice start. They could use depth at pitcher.

Yeah, I worry about the offense. Everything else is there. But in softball, that's still a good 40% of the game. These tournaments are critical for NCAA tournament seeding since the Big Ten schedule is imbalanced and very weak in the east.

But Hutch knows what she's doing and there are some promising new recruits.

02/07/2019 - 2:24pm Sadly, it seems to be coming…

Sadly, it seems to be coming from career politicians more than anyplace else.

I know he meant well, but when Al Gore became Reverend Al, we lost perspective as a scientific community.

When the lines between science and religion become blurred, we lose the ability to solve problems.

02/07/2019 - 2:18pm Incredible news. I was…

Incredible news. I was worried about his career, not just whether he'd be back in a few months.

02/07/2019 - 12:29pm https://news.yahoo.com…

https://news.yahoo.com/ocasio-cortez-world-going-end-150517060.html

12 years. And it appears she is misunderstanding the UN CC report that in 12 years we'll hit that "tipping point" to Armageddon we were supposed to hit a while back, but apparently didn't.

This really is religious, not science.

We're still asking questions. We don't need to make up scary stories and shut down discussions by invoking religious end-of-world imagery to figure out how best to deal with the inevitable transition to renewable energy sources.

But it took tens of thousands of years to get from figuring out that burning the waste product of past life on Earth could sustain future life to realizing that we'll run out of that waste product at some point. It's going to take some time to get to the next stage. Let's let our scientists solve that problem properly, without religious interference.

02/07/2019 - 11:40am Why bother, though? It's…

Why bother, though? It's like arguing against the Falwell crowd back in the '80s. Everything is turned into evidence of their theory of Armageddon. It's the exact opposite of science. Only it has infected universities rather than churches.

The climate changes. It has always changed. It always will change. And I'm pretty sure, unless the Mayans were right after all, the Earth will still be sustaining life just fine ten years from now.

02/04/2019 - 3:07pm Why does there need to be a…

Why does there need to be a halftime show? Go to a rap concert; it's not like they play football between sets.

Everybody in the stands is just getting food or playing with their phones. On TV, we get another giant load of commercials (only so many trips to the fridge I can make - I guess I did dishes and cleaned the kitchen). It was what, 35 minutes? Crazy.

Then another 25 minutes of commercials before Goodell gave away the trophy. Much too long. If they had done it right after the game, it might have been fun. Kraft could have been caught up in the emotion instead of doing his best to imitate a lamp post. And Brady could have at least deflated a football for us.

01/27/2019 - 8:45pm Boogie wasn't happy here. It…

Boogie wasn't happy here. It happens. Good depth player, tremendous energy, loved by her teammates. Maybe homesick? I don't want to speculate.

Kysre... the talent was obvious. She left the team in the middle of the WNIT and people were saying addition by subtraction. She transferred to West Virginia, sat out last season, played five games this season and apparently left the Mountaineers a couple of months ago.

It's not easy to build a program into a national power. Small steps. Borseth did a great job. Arico's building on that. She's a decent recruiter, but that has to build, too. They just graduated one of the top two or three players ever to play here. It's not surprising they're taking a step back.

They lost Munger to injury early today. She's an all-effort player, someone they really look to for leadership. Rough break, I think it hurt them on defense in particular.

I'm happy about where the program is right now. I don't support the hot take from the OP in the slightest.

01/23/2019 - 1:54am Just a different type of…

Just a different type of game, with the opportunity to work with people who will help him prepare for the NFL. This is a symptom of the system, not a criticism of Higdon.

01/22/2019 - 1:10am I think the rule change from…

I think the rule change from 2011 works quite well and is actually more fair than the college rule.

The team that goes last in the first college overtime wins about 55% of the time.

The team that won the coin toss for an NFL overtime won 58.5% of the time from 1978 until the rule change.

The team that won the coin toss for an NFL overtime won 53% of the time since the rule change.

The NFL overtime mechanism is a little more similar to the game itself than the college rule, which produces that shortened field.

The only change I'd make to the NFL rule is to eliminate the kickoff and start at the 25 on the far end. Frankly, given the injury issue, I'd eliminate the kickoff from football, period.

01/14/2019 - 11:50pm It's OK. For an otherwise…

It's OK. For an otherwise quite campy show, that episode was really good. I'd recommend it even to non-nerds, though they might be tempted to watch more and then think less of you.

01/06/2019 - 9:55pm I wonder what Bears fans are…

I wonder what Bears fans are going to do (I don't have the heart to tell my wife, who grew up in the Chicago area, right now) when they discover it's $5.2 million of dead cap next year if they release Parkey. So he's probably their very expensive kicker next year (the second of a four-year deal).

That's a lot of doink for one season. Perhaps when he retires, he can supplement his income as someone who finds needles in haystacks.

01/05/2019 - 10:53pm Harbaugh. Competed (yeah, as…

Harbaugh. Competed (yeah, as if...) against him in grade school - figured he'd be a pro baseball player the way he could throw. Then he was the QB at Michigan when I was a student.

Wheatley. A great competitor and person. Probably the best back we've had in modern times. That huge run in the Rose Bowl - the only bowl game I've ever attended.

01/02/2019 - 1:52pm I prefer the term "culinary…

I prefer the term "culinary appropriation."

01/02/2019 - 1:45pm And these points should end…

And these points should end the discussion. Under the current system, you have to play the bowl game.

The answer to the question is that we, as a fan base, should recognize these points and treat the game itself as roughly as important as a pre-season tune-up.

A chance to get excited about young players improving into next season. Not a chance to rip the coaching or worry about draft-eligible players deciding it isn't worth the risk.

So this is on us, not the team. The loss was about one one-millionth as excruciating as the one five weeks earlier and should generate one one-millionth the level of snowflaking.

12/31/2018 - 6:51pm Delaware State…

Delaware State notwithstanding (and they couldn't, obviously)...

Points Per Game Scored, all games, including bowls for those years with six or more wins:

Gary Moeller 33.5

Jim Harbaugh 33.0

Bo Schembechler 29.4

Brady Hoke 29.2

Lloyd Carr 28.7

Ole Miss's Apparent New OC 27.6

And defense? We won't go there. At least the Rebels know enough not to, either.

I think what he did was lightning at the right time for a mid-major. And that's about it. He's a terrible coach.

12/30/2018 - 3:31pm It's interesting, as well,…

It's interesting, as well, that Green Bay is putting out an offensive product today (not entirely their fault - Rodgers went into concussion protocol early) that even Hamilton could improve. Maybe that will inspire him.

Anyway, I think the problem isn't as serious as most here. All this worked just fine during that three-game mid-season stretch when the OL looked pretty good against solid competition. The problem is that Harbaugh doesn't seem to react well when the opponent shows it has done a good job scouting and anticipating the offense - and the OL just wasn't good enough to render that a moot point.

I don't want change for change's sake - that's how we got RichRod. It's not nothing that the other side of the well-documented 1-9 against top ten teams is 37-5 against the rest of the world. That really is impressive. If it weren't for that soul-killing 1-14 against OSU the last 15 years, I think we'd be fairly happy right now. We want more and that's understandable. I just want a plan before we start throwing everything away.

12/29/2018 - 4:21pm I blame the system, not the…

I blame the system, not the team. Our season ended in Columbus. These bowls exist only so that sponsors can advertise something. How much should it cost them to purchase two established football brands and have them play a game? If there's an iron-clad argument to pay college football players, it's meaningless bowl games.

And I think for those of you on the fence about whether it's worth caring much about, ask yourself whether you'd trade a W here and not getting "embarrassed" for the team pulling out that challenging W against Indiana last month?

Gary and the others would have given everything they've got if this were anything but a glorified exhibition game.

I'm glad I didn't watch it, just glanced at the box from time to time.

My need for alcohol today is about one one-millionth of what it was five weeks ago. That one hurt.

12/29/2018 - 2:01pm The season ended in Columbus…

The season ended in Columbus. We need this game for the extra practices, some game experience and for recruiting.

Relax... if they lose, it really doesn't change anything. That's why the game plan is more vanilla and the defense isn't more aggressive with the mediocre QB.

This isn't some bad Hollywood movie where Gary, Bush, Higdon and JBB would dress in the middle of the third quarter, tap Harbaugh on the shoulder, and the team wins the game on a last second flea-flicker double-reverse in slow motion where everyone on the Florida defense breaks multiple limbs. It just doesn't matter.

12/28/2018 - 2:25pm Checked the box to see if it…

Checked the box to see if it was worth going downstairs and finding it on television. It seems Auburn is averaging 66 yards per third-down play. But Purdue's strategy of ensuring Auburn doesn't have that many third downs to try and convert isn't working, either. So, no, back to work.

12/27/2018 - 4:09pm I remember many a day…

I remember many a day looking out for the UPS truck and that shoe-box like package from Renata Galasso (I guess she advertised in Street and Smith's or something).

About once a week, I'd walk or bike over to the Blue Front in A2 and any quarter I had was converted to a pack of cards. I remember those minis. I had hundreds of those that survived whatever cleaning my mom would have done.

Sold all my cards about ten years ago, was surprised to get something out of it. I had thought about collecting at one point maybe 20-25 years ago, but everything I had except the Galasso boxes was a bit rough around the corners and I would have essentially started from scratch.

12/19/2018 - 12:10pm It might be that I've…

It might be that I've disabled a few ad sites (like doubleclick) at the router level, but I haven't been able to see anything on mgoblue.com in about a year. Anything powered by sidearm, I think.

For the first time in years, I just compile and print a hard copy of Michigan schedules in various sports.

12/17/2018 - 4:14pm How much drama was there…

How much drama was there with Solomon's original decision?

On talent alone, this is a huge loss. And I won't go anywhere near saying addition by subtraction, because DL is a place where depth is always a plus and he's probably going to find a way to play on Sundays.

But I don't consider this a reflection on the program. Just a young man trying to find himself, making mistakes along the way, like we all do.

Here we are just weeks from one of the more devastating days in Michigan football history. Every piece of bad news feels harsher right now.

We'll be fine.

12/14/2018 - 11:56am I've worked with quarterback…

I've worked with quarterback numbers extensively, and what Rivers has done over his career is remarkable. The center of my work attempts to handle era differences (we are certainly in a passing offense era that shows no signs of retreating), so the numbers are adding up and I wouldn't say 8th all time. But not all that far from 8th.

The question is whether accumulated "great but not elite" and no playoff success can get you to the Hall of Fame (it does in baseball, because the numbers in baseball are infinitely easier to recognize and there's less focus on team).

The best comparison I can make to Rivers is Kenny Anderson in Cincinnati. Anderson not being in the Hall seems a huge oversight. I don't think Rivers will make it, either, because he's coming in with a group of superstars - Brady, Manning and Brees, with Rodgers and Roethlisberger not that far behind.

The opposite of Rivers is Eli Manning. Two rather inspiring Super Bowl runs and MVPs, but the numbers aren't there. He just wins games. I think the really poor seasons at the tail end of his career will cost him a place in Canton. If he had just accumulated average the last few years, he'd be considered.

12/14/2018 - 11:43am That kind of statement may…

That kind of statement may have been true before the last CBA, when rookie contract money was making it very difficult for teams to stay under the cap. But now there are teams that don't even pay bonus money because contracts haven't caught up to fill all that cap room.


That's not to say Brady isn't exceptional in this arena, though his $22 million cap cost isn't that far below Stafford's $26.5 million this year. Stafford's getting what franchise quarterbacks get these days. Can't blame him for that any more than we can blame Sam Bradford for the career he has put together compared to the money he has received.

 

The Lions' issues are more that they have an older team (like the Patriots), but haven't invested as wisely in older players. The Lions aren't in cap hell - hardly anyone gets there these days. Having Ansah, Lang and Marvin Jones out for extended periods is bad luck, though. Trading Tate may have been a bad look, but I think it was a wise decision given his age and contract status. Someone will overpay for him next year.

 

12/13/2018 - 3:50pm Right now, 27th in average…

Right now, 27th in average yards per pass attempt and the same number of picks as Goff and Mahomes, who have done other things. I'm not feeling it, and at some point it's not just the supporting cast.

He's not a bad quarterback and there's no reason to dump him, but I feel like we're always looking at his potential and not what he's done with it.

Surely there's a better all-pro candidate from this 5-8 squad that's still fighting for a playoff spot.

12/09/2018 - 11:26am I don't have the time right…

I don't have the time right now, and the data would be hard to find, but I'd be interested in doing a study on how many starts players have averaged at the majors over the years.

Was it a couple of years ago that Alabama got a top-100 recruit to grey-shirt? I'd imagine that fewer players these days expect (not the reality of course) to stay in school more than three years.

College football is "helped" by having talent more evenly distributed. But then Alabama or Michigan wouldn't be possible. I'm not sure the scholarship limit, as high as it is, makes a huge difference.

12/06/2018 - 6:40pm These aren't countries where…

These aren't countries where American football is even on the map. I'm surprised, if they want to experience a place most of us don't get a chance to see where there are increasing opportunities for football players (mostly those whose parents emigrate here before high school), that they don't choose Nigeria.

Or when our neat little supply of kickers runs out, maybe Australia or New Zealand. Rather remarkable how many punters in the NFL grew up playing Aussie football.

12/05/2018 - 12:37pm As be-all-end-alls are…

As be-all-end-alls are concerned, I wouldn't expect any less. There's a reason why we don't call UM/Indiana "The Game."

I'm generally happy that Meyer's gone, but I'd be 100 times happier if he had gone out with an L rather than 62 stabs to our hearts.

He's not coaching again. I think he'll end up reinventing himself as an analyst after he takes some time off.

12/04/2018 - 7:28pm Sorry you're irked, WD, but…

Sorry you're irked, WD, but I lean toward meaningless. Bowl games are exhibitions. They get you extra practices. There's benefit to both, but it's a lot closer to meaningless than it is to their previous game.

And, yes, the whole bowl system is largely irrelevant. That doesn't make the sport suck, but the post-season system is terrible. Most of these bowls draw crowds that would embarrass the better Division II programs.

I can't blame Gary for sitting out. He'd be out there if the game meant something. He played hurt when he knew it might affect his draft status. I won't forget that. This bowl game? Too much risk for something that leads to very little.

An opportunity for some youngsters to get real snaps against quality opposition, so it's worth playing. But probably not worth watching.

12/04/2018 - 12:33pm I'm not sure there's anyone…

I'm not sure there's anyone better at the quarterback sneak than Brady. That's a skill that has served the Patriots well.

Kneels are negative yardage, but sack yardage, unlike in college ball, is its own category and counted against net passing yardage (but not gross passing yardage, which is what is reported for quarterbacking stats).

Sometimes it's a judgment call whether a quarterback is making a rushing attempt or getting sacked. You even see the occasional 0-yard sack. Usually, the determination is whether the quarterback gets out of the tackle box and is moving forward, but there are qb draws to consider as well.

12/01/2018 - 9:36pm Congrats again. Knocked off …

Congrats again. Knocked off #12 Pitt on the road, which had the best record in the country at 30-1 going into the match, in five sets. On to the sweet 16 against #5 Texas.

11/28/2018 - 4:20pm It's a fair argument given…

It's a fair argument given the four-team compromise "playoff" system. The question is whether there's momentum to change the system.

Anyway, Michigan went into Columbus, winner-take-all, and really didn't make a good showing. I'm not sure why we'd want this kind of reward.

It's a terrible system. Let's say Michigan is 11-1 or 12-0 right now, then lost to Northwestern. Is it fair that the conference is penalized by not having a playoff team?

Or let's say the stars align, and Alabama destroys Georgia, Northwestern does its Fitzgeraldy thing to Ohio State, Oklahoma drops one to Texas. Even throw in a Clemson howler for good measure, though it's not necessary.

Now we're trying to compare Michigan to UCF and its schedule strength of tapioca pudding? No thanks. I want a real playoff system where the major conference championship games are part of the round of 16 so that they're not rendered even less useful than they are today.

11/27/2018 - 3:08pm So, they gave us a parking…

So, they gave us a parking meter to celebrate, um, whatever it is we're supposed to celebrate after Saturday?

Does it count down the minutes until the Wolverines can win a real trophy?

Yeah, I'm passing on this one. I hope Harbaugh does, too. Rather than putting it in Schembechler Hall, they can nail it to a post outside the Law Quad and laugh as exhausted students try stuffing quarters in it.

11/25/2018 - 1:10am There's a wide gap between…

There's a wide gap between great season and not-so-great season. Today was a bad day. Today was also the only day on the calendar that really mattered.

It is not unreasonable to expect the team to focus on this game, to the point where focus was almost lost on Indiana and maybe even Rutgers as well.

The effort put forth today was not good enough. That's not about entitled; that's about how to measure priorities within Michigan football. I think they got caught up in this "revenge" thing when a couple of flukes against Michigan State hardly constitutes urgency. Today was urgency.

Sure, the sun rises tomorrow. But I think it's reasonable to be upset and it's not reasonable to call today an anomaly. It is a real problem that Harbaugh must put first next year above all other distraction. He knows this. He will be better next year.

11/24/2018 - 4:38pm I credit Winovich and Gary…

I credit Winovich and Gary for playing hurt. Quality players; just bad luck that they couldn't be their best in a game of this magnitude for the program.

11/24/2018 - 4:21pm I never want to hear …

I never want to hear "revenge tour" again as long as I live. There is no other game that matters at this school. If you can't beat OSU, who cares about the others?

I'm glad there's a bowl game because of the extra practices, but I have no interest in seeing it.

You can never have enough healthy defensive linemen. Can't play man-to-man against real receivers without pressure on the QB.

11/24/2018 - 2:58pm Haskins has almost as many…

Haskins has almost as many yards passing as there have been commercials on Fox today. It's insult to injury - just about at the three-hour mark and they're drawing this out like Tanya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan. I think it's time to turn this one off.

11/24/2018 - 1:33pm I'd rather see them 0-11…

I'd rather see them 0-11 right now and putting forth a plucky effort than whatever this is. Revenge tour? Tour? None of it matters a bit if they don't get this one right.

11/24/2018 - 10:44am What's sad is that if one…

What's sad is that if one single call goes Michigan's way, you know everyone down there is going to accuse Delany of rigging the game for the good of the conference's playoff chances.

11/22/2018 - 5:50pm Oh, I don't hate the Bears…

Oh, I don't hate the Bears. I've watched them many times lately. We can argue what Nagy is doing with the extra points, but I don't agree with your take at all. They aren't children.

Daniel has never earned the starting role because he has a noodle arm. It's just what it is. A solid backup who you don't want to see starting for any length of time. He knows the game, he's somewhat mobile. He can't make many of the throws NFL starters need to make. That's all.

I poked fun with the Grossman comment not because they're all that similar (aside from both being small, Grossman was not mobile at all, and his arm isn't that weak), but because the Bears made it to a Super Bowl with him and he was a weak link in that team, so that represents something to Bears nation.

Anyway, enjoy the rest of the holiday. Turkey's just about ready here.

11/22/2018 - 2:16pm After Parkey plonked the…

After Parkey plonked the uprights four times in one game a couple of weeks ago, they stopped trying extra points. Maybe that made a small amount of sense with Trubisky, but it's not a percentage move when A) you've downgraded to Rex Grossman (I mean, Chase Daniel), B) your opponent is expecting it, and has done extra work on your goal-line plays and C) it forces you to exhaust your good goal-line plays rather than save them for regular offense.

The bottom line is that if you don't think your kicker is naturally a 95-98% kicker on extra points indoors, you should examine the scrap heap.

11/22/2018 - 1:15pm After one quarter, Wladimir…

After one quarter, Wladimir Klitschko seems to be slightly ahead on the judges' cards. This one looks like it will go to the scorecards.

11/18/2018 - 5:41pm ESPN became dead to me when…

ESPN became dead to me when they ran the Tom Osborne "retire with a championship" campaign in '97, culminating with audible cheering from behind the scenes when they announced their final poll live early in the morning following the Rose Bowl.

I don't think I've watched SportsCenter since that morning. Doubt I've missed much.

In the meantime, their assessment of the rigors of the AAC schedule... sounds like their analysis hasn't improved in the last 21 years.

11/17/2018 - 8:02pm Post-game interview:

---

Post-game interview:

---

"So, <random Michigan offensive player | clock management coordinator | play-caller>, your word this season is FINISH, what does that mean to you?"

---

"Well... I guess a good post-game sauna, and maybe we're flying to Helsinki for next year's spring trip."

11/17/2018 - 5:48pm I'm trying to see the…

I'm trying to see the positives in that first half, and it's just mistake after mistake, even though it's a close game. Wasted opportunities, defensive lapses, winding up with throwing away points at the end of the half.

I never thought I'd see Long flat-out beaten in a head-to-head without a deep threat.

This is why the SEC schedules FCS games the week before rivalry week.

Hopefully a fire can be lit right now. For a lot of these guys, it's their last appearance in Ann Arbor.