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Thursday, October 11, 2007

Cartoon by Joel A. Morgan.

Chart? Chart. Hart Chart. Boren again comes in for a hammerin', as EMU's Jason Jones spent large portions of the game driving him into the backfield, but maybe it's the predictability of the scheme?

One other note: the plague of fumbled snaps has not stopped with Henne's return, which implies that the problem is with the center. Maybe that switch to guard should be permanent?

A potential break. It's actually a strain, but...
Purdue defensive end Cliff Avril could miss Saturday's game at Michigan with a right knee strain.
That would be a big loss for the Boilers, as Avril was their most accomplished defensive player entering the year. Over at Boiled Sports, they're pessimistic as hell... for some reason. Join the club, kids.

Most relevant personnel loss ever. Yeah, Minnesota's backup fullback is transferring. We are assured victory now. Burn(!) on the outgoing coaches:
"I was not happy with what was going on," said Becker, a Wayzata graduate. "I was a (Glen) Mason recruit, and Brewster has his own ideas. It wasn't about wins and losses."
More disturbingly, receiver Mike Chambers also said "screw you guys, I'm going home" a couple weeks ago. Chambers had 19 catches as a freshman and six this year and was likely to be heavily featured in the future in Minnesota's new spread offense.

Mason must be cackling as he watches highlights of the Minnesota-FAU game in his rec room. But Minnesota's tight ends are going to kick ass, right?

More like SHAMaker. Zing! Good god. Basketball media day went off recently, so a flood of stories are coming out all covering the same press conferences and suchlike and so forth and so on. They all basically say the same thing: Tommy Amaker was a very, very bad coach. This one from the Ann Arbor News' Nate Fenno is the most damning. Take a gander:
"Last year, the discipline wasn't pushed out of us. There weren't consequences. Either we win or we lose. There wasn't nothing at stake. A lot of guys' mindsets were like that,'' sophomore DeShawn Sims said during Tuesday's media day at Crisler Arena. "Now, it's all win.''
But wait! There's more!
"(The seniors) didn't really want to play, and our coach felt like he had to play them anyway,'' Sims said. "Even though we were young, we were getting mad on the sideline. 'Put us back in. We believe we can win the game.' ... They didn't take it like that. They thought we were just coming for their jobs.

"The four years wore on the (four seniors). They got used to playing. We were coming in hungry, wanting to do whatever we could to win, even though we didn't have as much experience or talent as the other guys. People saw when we came in that we gave it our all, no matter what time of the game we were in. Some of the guys didn't like that.''

Jesus Christ! It's not uncommon to hear this sort of "now everything is different" sentiment when a new coach's first season rolls around, but rarely does the condemnation of the previous regime get framed so explicitly. Given the shambles Amaker left Seton Hall's program in, much of that has to be on his head. (The rest, of course, is on Courtney Sims and Lester Abram.) Harvard will be a fallout-laden crater where radiation zombies chew on the marrow of the freshly deceased by 2018 if Amaker is suffered to remain there. And their zombie basketball team will average 20 turnovers a game.

Media day video from MLive:

Ooooh! I...! Ooooh!

A Yosemite Sam moment:
"So many times in all of these guys' lives, they are told that they can't do something," Harbaugh said. "They are told, 'No, you're not big enough, you're not fast enough, you're not strong enough, you've got too many players hurt this week, you can't possibly think or expect that you can beat USC.' And they hear that hundreds and thousands of times, and this football team yesterday said, 'Yes.' As a team, they said, 'Yes, we can win.' It was about the team, the team, the team, the team."
Summer: accuse Michigan of leading you away from the history degree you craved so and attack their academics multiple times. State that Bo's program -- it's still Bo's program -- is cutting kids loose without a care in the world for their fate.

Fall: paraphrase Bo after upsetting USC.

Seriously, dude, screw you. The gall.

(Note: I searched for "angry yosemite sam" to find the picture above, which was the second hit. Why? Because it was featured in an MGoBlog post that argued people who though Troy Smith did anything other than suck were crazy. It argued this very well, citing Smith's uneven to flat bad performances in every 2004 game other than Michigan, and made a convincing case that preseason hype around him was ludicrous. I wonder how that worked out? I guess we'll never know.)

You suck. This letter appeared in the Ann Arbor News on the second.
There'll be one less fan at Michigan Stadium

After sitting through the Penn State game, I have decided never to step foot in Michigan Stadium again, and that's a big statement coming from an Ann Arbor native whose grandfather worked excavating the old farm so the stadium could open in 1927!

I stopped going to the University of Michigan hockey games because of the rude chants, and now they have hit the Big House, courtesy of our illustrious students saying "You Suck'' in unison with the marching band's help. How rude - I'm totally embarrassed to be a U-M Wolverine fan!

Bad enough to hear the boos.

My second gripe is the fact that season ticket holders do not come to the games. I sit in Section 42, Row 70, and 90 percent of the fans are not the same every week.

Everyone stands up for each play and I miss every good play - why? My suggestion is to shut up and sit down. If everyone would have some game day etiquette, we could all see the game. The entire student section stands the whole game - I'm glad I'm not over there.

So I'm going to stay at home and miss all of the great tailgate with friends and great fans from other colleges who come to the Big House to try to enjoy the game.

It's my choice, but I need to make a statement and forgo the madness.

Steven Majors, Dexter

Dear Steven Majors,

You suck. Good riddance.

Everyone Under 200

(Sidenote: I have gotten a couple of emails from middle-aged folk disappointed with the "You suck" being appended to "Temptation" after a third-down stop these days. These concerns might be valid (though personally I can't get exercised about "you suck"; as student section cheers go that's tame). Mr. Majors' general attitude is not. )

New digs. Sadly, Big Ten Wonk is no more, and even if Wonk has fancy new digs with Ken Pomeroy over at, he is no longer Wonk. Still, the new BP is guaranteed to be the best place for college basketball coverage anywhere and will be closely monitored around these parts.

Lies! The Chicago Trib rips into Comcast's anti-BTN commercials; I co-sign. No matter who you think is in the right in this particular kerfuffle, Comcast's public stance has been pretty loathesome. The Big Ten Network puts forth its argument -- these are the games, we have second pick three weeks, third pick three weeks, and half of everyone's basketball schedule -- and Comcast says...
"In virtually all cases, ABC, ESPN, ESPN2 have chosen not to carry [the games that air on BTN]," Ruggiero said.
Eh. I'm not under any illusions the BTN exists for my health, but at least they aren't talking crap about the quality of games on the BTN whilst simultaneously negotiating with the SEC to create an identical channel.

Etc.: Michigan Monday; Les Miles' "loose morals" revealed in all their hideous taffy glory; midseason heroes from MnB; What the Deuce explores the Michigan coaching search through the lens of The Office.