Monday, August 30, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
2010 SPAWN FANTASY FOOTBALL TEAMS
9 Finger Freaks
Huge Fake TDs
He Hate Me
Thursday, August 26, 2010
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
In the next couple of weeks, there is going to be an announcement regarding the future construct of the Big 10 conference. There have been very strong indications that Michigan and Ohio State will not be in the same division and THE GAME will not be played as the last game on the schedule.
This change will be met with predictable disdain and a universal outcry from both sides of the rivalry. Personally, I am not sure how I feel about it. I understand that M/OSU is the greatest rivalry in sports. I recognize this contest has been the jewel of the Big Ten conference for decades. I acknowledge the historical importance of Bo & Woody. In a perfect world this would go on forever. The days of the Big 2 and Little 8 are gone and they are not coming back.
The truth is, the rivalry has lost some of its luster at the same time other conferences have spiked in national attention. In some respects, I believe we brought this upon ourselves. I can’t help but think the bright national spotlight and overwhelming hatred has become so heavy it has collapsed upon itself. To many outside the rivalry, this thing we have with the Buckeyes is just not that important compared to real conference championship games. We have certainly not been holding up our end of the deal by losing 6 straight games. Couple this one sided situation with the fact Ohio State was whipped twice by SEC teams in the BCS Championship games, and you can understand why the Big Ten Conference is seeking this change.
To the leaders of the Big Ten, this is all about national perception and responding to the competitive challenge presented by the SEC/Big12/Pac12. They are faced with these choices.
- Place Michigan & Ohio State in the same division and leave THE GAME untouched at the end of the regular season schedule. Run the risk of creating a lopsided balance of power for a single division (see Texas & Oklahoma in the B12 South) and lose all possibility of Michigan/Ohio State ever meeting in the B10 championship game.
- Place Michigan & Ohio State in different divisions and leave THE GAME untouched at the end of the regular season schedule. Run the risk of having M/OSU face each other two weeks in a row. I (along with many others) didn't want to see this in 2006 and don't want to see it now.
- Place Michigan & Ohio State in different divisions and move THE GAME to another part of the regular season schedule. Allow the rivalry to continue and set up the possibility of a eventual M/OSU B10 championship game.
Yes, all this is very unsettling. In a perfect world, traditions would continue and no change would be necessary. In the real world, this change is necessary. We have been playing the Buckeyes the end of the season every year since 1935 except when we didn’t, like in 1942 (Iowa), 1986 (Hawaii) and 1998 (Hawaii). The world did not shatter during those seasons, and it won’t now.
There was a time when Oklahoma v. Nebraska was part of our last game of the season club. That rivalry game was changed with the birth of the B12 and both of those programs have moved on and have found new success. There is no reason we won't both survive and thrive.
Rather than rip my hair out and moan about the “good old days” – I am willing embrace this change and see it as a new opportunity. Replacing Ohio State with Sparty that weekend before Thanksgiving sounds like a lot of fun to me – plus if we are both good enough, the prospect of watching Michigan play the Bucks in the B10 Championship game is just too much fun to imagine.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
And tomorrow is the annual Fan Day.
Unfortunately, it will remain a mystery. Lots of different looks, lots of substitutions and variation. I will say, however, that the D closes fast and hits hard. Still no support in the middle, but better pursuit angles and zone-like defense. Anyone hits us deep on the edge though and that will be 6. A lot.
Like I said before, best Defense??? BALL CONTROL OFFENSE.
Take your anti-acids now. Kick off team didn't kick it into the end-zone once, and didn't control the return. Punt coverage? Close your eyes as it may be a scary ride.
I'm stoked for the season to start already!!!!!
I'm excited for the "new" stadium and "new" crowd traditions.
And, I've got my fingers crossed that we can win the ones we are supposed to and that everyone stays healthy.
GO BLUE !!!!!!!
Thursday, August 19, 2010
Currently we have nine teams and we are looking for more. If you have never played before, don't worry, it is easy. The draft is scheduled for August 28th.
If you are interested in joining the fun, send us an email to spawnofmzone at gmail dot com. You will get an invite.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
If you feel like turning your depression into something else, take a couple of minutes and read the comments from Sparty on this thread. Pathetic. I have many life-long friends that root for the jolly green giants, so I refuse to characterize an entire fan base with a blanket declaration of hatred. But come on... 9+ pages of laughter and jokes celebrating an injury of a rival player? I can not wait to whip those mouth breathers again and listen to them cry and moan.
Friday, August 13, 2010
Warning: this is bad, real bad.
10. Desmond Howard : Exactly what Michigan needs, a new coach with exactly zero coaching experience.
9. Les Miles : He already has a "damn fine team". That ship has sailed and is never coming back.
8. Paul Johnson : I loved what he did at Navy, but I am fairly certain a run only triple option attack would work in this conference these days.
7. Pete Carroll : Now the NCAA violation seal is broken, why not go for some real lack of institutional control action.
6. Tyrone Willingham : I like Tyrone, but don't think a castaway from the wreck of the USS Notre Dame would be successful here either.
5. Lloyd Carr : Come on.
4. Chris Peterson : This is only one of the two names on this list I like.
3. Greg Schiano : Not exactly setting the world on fire these days at Rutgers, plus he already said no once.
2. Jim Harbaugh : Needs to do some bridge mending and install a brain to mouth filter, but along with Peterson, he is going to be an option should the search materialize.
1. Mike Leach : Perfect. If Rich Rodriguez did not work out, the old school alumni are sure to love this guy.
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
But then I attended a Padres game last night at PETCO Field in downtown San Diego. It suddenly occurred to me that if this professional football backup QB gig doesn't work out for him, he has other options....
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
There has only been one day of official football practice, and things are already getting back to normal for the Michigan football program. Before Rich Rodriguez arrived and as far back as 1879, Michigan had season long football captains. Legendary leaders such as LaMarr Woodley (2006), Stefan Humphries (1983), and Harrison "Boss" Weeks (1902) have shared the peer leadership responsibility for the Wolverines. All this changed when the new staff arrived. Instead, beginning in 2008 rotating captains were selected for each game and permanent captains were named at the end of the season.
As a former Marine, I believe strongly in the concept of formal & structured leadership. I have lived and witnessed the value of peer leadership. Organizations need to be led at multiple levels to achieve greatness. Of all the changes we have endured with this transition, this one just never felt right with me. What kind of unit names their leadership after the battle is fought?
Yesterday, this tweet arrived from Coach Rodriguez:
Regardless of the their versus there grammar mistake (which I am sure will lead to another firestorm of ridiculous drama.... OMG!!!!! our coach can't pass a fourth grade english test!!!!) it was like a breath of fresh air for me and thousands of other Michigan football fans.
I can’t say if naming Captains before the season will make any difference in terms of wins and losses, but it sure feels right. I am sure the players feel the same way.
Congrats to Mark Moundros and Steve Schilling, you have joined an impressive and elite group.
Now go lead this team back to respectability.
Sunday, August 08, 2010
2010 will be my 33rd year of attending Michigan football games. I'm old enough to have seen Troy Woolfolk's daddy pound the rock behind Russell Davis' lead blocking. I wanted to be Rick Leach.
Michigan ran the probverbial table for so long that it never occurred to me that it would ever be possible for them to actually have a losing season. Ever.
But T-9 Wins with her defense comment. Therein lies the difference.
Bo Era Ave Score: 29 to 11
Mo Era Ave Score: 32 to 17
LLoyd Era Ave Score: 29 to 18
Combined Ave Score: 30 to 15
Rich Era Ave Score: 25 to 28
We need to only average 5 more pts/game to reach the average of the three prior coaches, from '69 to '07.
We need to remove 13 points per game from the opposing teams to reach the same average from '69 to '07.
Offense isn't much of a reach. Defense needs some WORK.
Now, Bo really skewed those defense numbers, as 7 of his 20 seasons he kept opponents under 100 points per season (nearly 1/3 of his coaching career!) In those 7 specific seasons, opponents only scored an average of 6.74 points per game against us!! Only Lloyd came close to the under 100 mark for a season (1997) at 114 - with the average score being 27 to 10.
Bo was right. Defense Wins Championships. Bo won 13 Conference Championships in 20 years (5 outright); Mo won 3 Big Tens in 5 years (2 outright); Lloyd won 5 Big Tens in 13 years (2 outright) - not to mention a National Championship - again, in that stifling Defensive year of 1997.
In the 21 years we won the conference, the average score was 31 to 13. Actually pretty close to the 30 to 15 average scores for those three coaches over those 38 seasons. Damn, we were good.
Now, herein lies the other problem. The unthinkable has happened in our lifetimes, and it has continued far longer than we could have imagined - if we could have ever imagined it happening in the first place....which we couldn't.
What a cluster#$%^&. The insanity of all insanities. Two back to back, losing seasons after nearly 40 years of glory. Four #$%^& DECADES of WINNING FOOTBALL. All the glory. All the domination. All the great teams, great players, a few Heisman winners,and wonderful, wonderful memories of Fall Saturdays with over 100,000 of your best friends at the Big House.
Folks, it is completely understandable that we are still reeling from the shock, the loss, the unimaginable itself.
Having watched my father die a slow death from cancer at the relatively young age of 55, I don't say this lightly. It's as though a cancer has spread through our team and all we can do is sit there and watch it as it grows and destroys all the joy we once knew to be Michigan Football. All we can seemingly do is sit there and pray and watch, and hope for the best. One thing I do know - being and staying negative doesn't help a #$%^&* thing.
Many people think Rich and his system are the cancer, as we haven't had a losing season in nearly 40 years before he arrived in Ann Arbor. Perhaps there is some truth in that, but not as much as people like to think.
A new coach, a completely new offensive system, several defensive schemes, some graduations, some attrition, a shitload of young kids and not a whole lot of leadership. All in the same place at the same time.
Flashes of greatness and shades of incompetence. From the heights of ecstacy to the valley of the shadow of death, it contniues - this rollercoaster of Michigan Football. One thing I do know - speaking for myself - I'm riding the bandwagon and I'm not getting off.
I see a bunch of great kids, (most of them not old enough to legally drink a beer), with enough talent to play Division One football, thrown into a firestorm of adversity. I happen to believe that those who have stayed have bought into the new system and are paying the godforsaken BARWIS PRICE to get ready for the upcoming season. Nobody wants to win more than they do - not even us.
And I believe that the ongoing adversity that has surrounded this program over the last two years has started to unite this team in a way that perhaps winning wouldn't have. It's them against the world.
Nobody wants to return Michigan football back to greatness more than these kids that are about to take the field a month from now against UConn.
I'm going to be there in the crowd of 109,000+ on September 4th. Ready to watch. Ready to pray. Ready to believe in greatness. Ready to believe in my team. Ready to watch Brock Mealer lead the team out of the tunnel, onto the field and under that glorious Banner while the band plays the Greatest College Fight Song Ever Written - the Michigan Victors.
I'll be there yelling until I can't yell. Supporting my team from the stands the only way I can - with whatever voice I've got left.
I'm still All In for Michigan, and I hope you are too.
Here's a video I put together last weekend. I think the theme of this song epitomizes this team.
"We stand and we won't fall - we're one and one for all - the writing's on the wall - we are the Youth Gone Wild"
Friday, August 06, 2010
What needs to happen for RR to be Michigan’s coach in 2011 ?
As I stated a couple of months ago, I don’t think Rich Rodriguez will ever be successful here. He is the definition of a lightning rod, if by lightning you mean idiotic drama cloaked in an overcoat of controversy dripping in healthy layer of unreasonable hatred. The constant splat of bad news has worn me down -- and I don’t think it will quit. It is getting to the point where I am not surprised any more.
As a Michigan supporter, I want to win. I am tired of being the laughing stock of college football. For those of you that cheer against us because we are a bunch of arrogant pricks, please stop. Rest assured I am comprehensively and perpetually humbled. I just want us to be an ordinary successful college football program again.
That being said, I think three things need to happen to prevent Dave Brandon from holding a press conference and announcing a coaching change after the Ohio State game in November.
1) We need a winning season with a bowl bid.
2) We need to win two of the three traditional rivalry games (Notre Dame, Michigan State, or Ohio State).
3) There needs to be no more NCAA rules drama.
If any of those three things does not happen, we will be looking for a new coach and start this “re-building” process over. I no longer fear the prospect of starting over from scratch, again. You need to look no further than our new siblings in Lincoln to see that a once proud program can crash into the side of a mountain and eventually put the pieces back together again to be respectable. If they can recover from Bill Callahan, we can recover from this.
Realistically, how many wins will this team see?
I have looked up and down the schedule at least a thousand times – and I believe I spot seven.
If things go completely right (offense clicks and defense makes tackles) we may see nine wins. If things go badly from the start (like losing to both UConn and Notre Dame to open the season) we could be staring at another three win nightmare. At that point I will lead the campaign for a complete program meltdown.
UConn: We have no injuries and have better players.
Notre Dame: I never expect a win in South Bend.
UMass: Losing here would be worse than the loss to Appy State.
Bowling Green: We have another MAC win streak to protect.
Indiana: They played us very tough last year.
Sparty: Home game. Time to return things to normal.
Iowa: Who scheduled these giants for homecoming?
Penn State: By the time they play us, their issues will be fixed.
Illinois: My expectation is Ron Zook will be fired by this point.
Purdue: I can’t believe I want to beat Purdue so badly.
Wisconsin: Too much size and talent for our defense.
Ohio State: Our next win against these guys won’t be in Columbus
Denard or Tate ?
I know this will sound corny, but my answer is both… we need BOTH at this point. The teams in the B11 are not getting any smaller or weaker. In this offense, the QB is going to get hit. A lot. Injuries are going to happen when you line up a bunch of smurfs against a bunch of monsters. We need more than one QB to make this work.
My preference is Denard. I am just giddy at the prospect of him running our full offense, he is just that damn exciting to watch. I would love to see him emerge as an accurate passer to go along with his astonishing running ability. Unless something changes drastically in fall practice, I expect him to begin the season as the starter.
On the other hand, I was and could be very satisfied with a productive and healthy Tate. There was no doubt he is an exciting and capable quarterback. Things turned sour last season when he tried to do too much and got hurt. The fact remains, he was a true freshman. Going forward, he needs to make healthier decisions and take care of the football better as a sophomore and beyond.
Did Troy Woolfolk cross the line at the B10 meetings when he called out Tate’s work ethic?
I have to admit, I was a little surprised when I read the comments this week. Senior leadership is an important and powerful thing. If Troy was a sophomore and Tate was a senior, I would be very very concerned with the chemistry on the team. Right now, with all that is going on with this program… whatever.
One thing to remember, he is a cornerback and they tend to talk a lot of smack. I honestly think he intended to highlight the off season efforts of Denard. The “diseased” comments that followed appeared to me to be the unfiltered ramblings of a college kid with a bunch of microphones stuffed in front of his face. He was expressing his feelings and doing what he felt was right as a leader. I can’t fault him for that.
Best case: Tate gets the message, starts to work harder and matures into a leader to match his talent.
Worst case: Tate continues to be lazy, loses his starting job to Denard, and transfers to Stanford.
Likely case: Tate tells Troy to “fuck off” under his breath after he throws at TD over him in practice next week.
Will we ever beat Ohio State again?
It took 40+ years, but Navy beat Notre Dame. Twice.
It will happen. Someday. Maybe. Hopefully.
Candidly, I don’t expect it in the next couple of years and it may not ever be against Jim Tressel again.
Right now, they are good. Really good. We are not. It is as simple as that.
When it does eventually happen… on that day I promise to smile a lot and enjoy it. I just hope I live long enough to experience it again.
Check out the hockey guys tonight at Yost. Over 35s start at 6:30, doors at 6 pm
The unders are after that.
hockey in august?
As of Tuesday, Aug. 3, the roster includes: Red Berenson (1962), Bubba Berenzweig (1999), Mike Cammalleri (2003), Anthony Ciraulo (2010), Andrew Cogliano (2009), Tim Cook (2007), Andrew Ebbett (2006), Danny Fardig (2009), Bobby Hayes (1999), Al Hinnegan (1962), David Huntzicker (2001), Matt Hunwick (2007), Jack Johnson (2009), Steve Kampfer (2010), Jim Keough (1969), Mike Knuble (1995), Bruce Koviak (1968), Don Krussman (1983), Brian Lebler (2010), Dan Lerg (1980), Gregg Malicke (1998), Kip Maurer (1978), Tim Miller (2009), Mark Mitera (2009), David Moss (2005), Brandon Naurato (2009), Eric Nystrom (2005), David Oliver (1994), Rob Palmer (1977), Tom Pendlebury (1963), Kevin Porter (2008), Sean Ritchlin (1999), Alex Roberts (1990), Mike Roemensky (2003), Brandon Rogers (2005), Dale Rominski (1999), Billy Sauer (2009), John Shouneyia (2003), Ted Speers (1983), Cam Stewart (1994), Dan Stiver (1993), Mike Stone (1994), Chris Summers (2010), Travis Turnbull (2009), Brian Wiseman (1994) in addition to Camil Banciu and Eric Hall.