Monday Quick Hits: Michigan Wins Third-Straight Club Lacrosse Title

By · Monday, May 17, 2010 · 10:24 PM |  Share | Leave a Comment 
  • The Michigan club lacrosse team won its third-straight MCLA title on Saturday, downing Arizona State 12-11 in the championship game.  It certainly seems like it’s only a matter of time until lacrosse gets bumped up to the varsity level, but I just hope it happens sooner rather than later.
  • Michigan was trailing Northwestern in baseball 14-0 yesterday after only 2.5 innings.  The bad news obviously was that Michigan played so bad that it was down 14-0, but the good news was that it had plenty of time to get back into the game, and that is exactly what they did.  Michigan slowly but surely chipped away at the 14-run deficit and eventually tied the game on a 2-run homer in the bottom of the ninth.  Then, in the bottom of the tenth, Mike Dufek hit a walk-off home run to give Michigan the unbelievable 15-14 victory and to keep Michigan near the top of the Big Ten standings with one week left to play.  This was such a ridiculous game that it made SportsCenter, which isn’t too surprising considering teams don’t often come back from 14-run deficits and win on a walk-off homer.
  • The softball team received the No. 2 overall seed in the NCAA tournament and will be hosting a regional this weekend.
  • MGoBlue put together a piece on softball’s Bree Evans, who was seriously injured during a game last October but is once again healthy and playing for Michigan.
  • Michigan’s game in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge is going to be at Clemson on Tuesday, November 30.
  • Gil Brandt, the former longtime VP of player personnel for the Cowboys, said that whatever Rich Rodriguez told scouts about Morgan Trent was not why Trent dropped to the sixth round.  In fact, Brandt gave his own scouting report on Trent and explained exactly why the former Wolverine was only a sixth-round pick.
  • Mike Hart doesn’t regret using the phrase “little brother” to describe Michigan State after Michigan won the rivalry game in 2007.
  • If he could do it over again, Drew Henson would have stayed for his senior season at Michigan instead of signing with the Yankees.
  • Marvin Robinson is going to join the football team at some point in the next couple of weeks.
  • Johnny Sears has signed with the Bengals.
  • Dayeesha Hollins has left the women’s basketball team and is going to transfer somewhere closer to home.
  • Isaiah Sykes ended up deciding to play college basketball at Central Florida.
  • There may be some rule changes coming to NCAA hockey.
  • MVictors has a good post examining what exactly went down between Bo Schembechler and Ernie Harwell during that whole saga in the early 90s.
  • Purdue reinstated Justin Siller, the quarterback who torched Michigan in 2008.

Wednesday Quick Hits: The Latest from Spring Practice

By · Wednesday, March 24, 2010 · 11:59 PM |  Share | Leave a Comment 
  • Michigan has been using the 3-3-5 defense quite a bit this spring.
  • Due to injuries (the ones listed below are just some of them) and an overall lack of depth, this year’s spring game won’t really be like an actual game, though the hope is to do that in the future.
  • Safeties Vladimir Emilien and Jared Van Slyke will miss at least a few weeks with knee injuries.
  • Je’Ron Stokes likely will be out one more week with an ankle injury.
  • Anthony LaLota is dealing with an elbow injury.
  • Denard Robinson hasn’t practiced at a position other than quarterback yet this spring.
  • Mike Hart was at practice on Tuesday.
  • With Michigan losing its starting kicker and punter to graduation, the staff is essentially auditioning replacements (for kicker, at least; no punters are currently on the roster) this spring.
  • Rich Rodriguez has once again been sued for another real estate-related project, this time in Alabama.  Back before last season he was named in a similar lawsuit for a real estate project in Virginia.
  • Admission for the spring game, like usual, is free, but this year Michigan and C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital are partnering for the following promotion:

    Fans can make a donation of choice to C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital upon entering the gates of Michigan Stadium. Donations are accepted at any level but fans will receive giveaways for donating at the following four levels:

    • $5 donation receives an “All in for Michigan Towel”
    • $20 donation receives a spring game “All in for Michigan, All in for Mott” T-shirt
    • $250 donation receives four passes to a pre-season scrimmage
    • $500 donation receives 2 pre-game sideline passes (does not include game tickets) to ONE of the following four games: Bowling Green, Massachusetts, Iowa or Illinois (limited number of passes per game)

    To encourage fans to participate in the fundraiser, the Beam Family of Brighton, Mich., will match dollar-for-dollar every donation that is made to Mott at the gates during the spring game.

  • King Arthur Abraham, a boxer from Germany who is fighting Flint-native Andre Dirrell at Joe Louis Arena on Saturday, is a Michigan football fan.

    “Everybody in Germany knows the University of Michigan,” said Abraham, making his first visit to Detroit. “It is big and famous. Yes, I know a little, too, about the football team. I like American football. If there are Michigan State fans at my bout, would they please remember, I fight Andre, not them.”

    Considering Dirrell, Abraham’s opponent, said today that he’d like to see Michigan State win the national championship in basketball, I think it’s safe to say I’ll be rooting for Abraham to win the fight.

  • Associate basketball coach Jerry Dunn is a candidate for the head coaching job at UNC-Wilmington.
  • Michigan’s women’s basketball team will play Northwestern at Crisler Arena on Thursday night at 7 p.m. in the third round of the WNIT.

Football Quick Hits: Michigan Fills Coaching Vacancy with Adam Braithwaite

By · Saturday, February 13, 2010 · 4:37 AM |  Share | Leave a Comment 

Just like a few weeks ago, I’ve been busy with school and have had a bunch of news pile up.  As a result, I’ve separated quick hits into different posts for football, basketball, and hockey.

  • Rich Rodriguez filled the vacancy on his coaching staff by promoting quality control assistant Adam Braithwaite to safeties/outside linebackers coach.  Braithwaite’s experience as a position coach/coordinator is mainly limited to lower divisions, but he was a graduate assistant for Rodriguez at West Virginia and a quality control assistant the last two seasons at Michigan.  To me this was a pretty “meh” move, but I guess Rodriguez wanted some continuity considering Braithwaite has been around the team for a couple years.
  • This move means that Greg Robinson is now in charge of coaching the inside linebackers and Tony Gibson is responsible for the cornerbacks and free safeties.  Gibson is also now the team’s special teams coordinator.  Regarding that move, the release said this: “Rodriguez will continue to have all of the coaches remain involved with a certain phase of special teams, but Gibson will manage that phase of the game on a daily basis and on game day.”
  • Before Rich Rodriguez’s press conference on signing day, I wondered to myself if any questions would be about Demar Dorsey, who has an interesting past, to say the least.  Well, there were multiple questions about Dorsey and his brushes with the law, but Rodriguez came to his future player’s defense each time before the media was finally told to move on.  The media did move on at the press conference, but the Free Press followed up with a lengthy article detailing what exactly Dorsey has done.  The article sheds some light on the type of trouble he has been in and includes some quotes from Dorsey on what happened and why he decided to come to Michigan.  One of the big reasons he picked Michigan is to escape the type of people that have brought him down in the past, though he already is trying to do that and (knock on wood) hasn’t been in any trouble since 2008.  I certainly understand some of the concern over taking a player like Dorsey, but I’m glad he is coming to Michigan and hope he is a changed person.
  • Somebody who isn’t a changed person is Drew Sharp.  I say that because, unsurprisingly, he was a huge douchebag about the whole Dorsey situation and made some extremely unprofessional comments.  Like Rob Parker, I will never understand why Sharp has a job and manages to get on ESPN as often as he does.  It’s so blatantly obvious that Sharp’s schtick is simply to write and say negative/controversial things to drum up attention.  He isn’t anything close to an actual journalist (this picture from MVictors certainly seems to show that) and is nothing more than an assclown, as the folks at the MZone used to call him.
  • Rich Rodriguez said there was one school in the Big Ten doing a lot of negative recruiting.  He didn’t name the school, but he did say that it wasn’t Ohio State.  Rumors suggest that the school in question is either Minnesota, Purdue, or Michigan State.  Based on how big of a problem Danny Hope seems to have with Rodriguez, my bet is that Purdue is the school behind the negative recruiting.
  • Antonio Kinard appears to be the only member of the 2010 recruiting class in danger of not qualifying.
  • AnnArbor.com put together a comprehensive Q&A with Michigan’s 2010 recruiting class.
  • Also from AnnArbor.com is an interview with Devin Gardner from signing day.
  • MGoBlog has video and transcripts of interviews from signing day with early enrollees and coaches.
  • Ricardo Miller hopes he can be the next Braylon Edwards.
  • Austin White put in a lot of extra work last fall in order to be able to enroll early.
  • Baquer Sayed, a receiver from Dearborn Fordson, will join the Michigan football team next season as a preferred walk-on.  Sayed had offers from a couple MAC schools, but he opted to play for Michigan as a walk-on instead.
  • The Big House Blog has more news on recruits who will join the team as walk-ons as well as an interview with kicker Jeremy Ross, who is from Pioneer High School.
  • Mark Moundros will line up at fullback and linebacker this spring.
  • Had Calvin Magee got the South Florida job, he would have wanted to take some Michigan assistants with him, including Greg Frey, Tony Dews, and the newly-promoted Adam Braithwaite.
  • The Board of Regents met on signing day for an informal meeting to discuss the NCAA’s investigation of practicegate.  No real news has come out of the meeting, but hopefully it is a sign that the investigation is close to wrapping up.
  • There is a photo gallery on MGoBlue giving us a look inside the suites in Michigan Stadium.
  • “72 percent of the suites and 77 percent of club seats” that will open in the Big House next season have been sold.
  • Mike Hart would like to be Michigan’s head coach someday.
  • The Michigan Daily’s Andy Reid wrote a great article about Antonio Bass.
  • Tyrone Wheatley has been hired by Syracuse to be the Orange’s running backs coach.
  • Teryl Austin, a former Michigan assistant, is Florida’s new defensive coordinator.  Urban Meyer sure likes former Michigan assistant coaches.
  • Former Michigan coach Mike DeBord has landed in Chicago as the Bears’ tight ends coach.
  • Former Michigan players Jonathan Goodwin and Adrian Arrington and former coaches Mike Mallory and Terry Malone are Super Bowl champions as a result of the Saints’ victory over the Colts last Sunday.
  • The NCAA has proposed some new rules for the 2011 season.
  • A 13-year-old quarterback committed to USC.  Weird doesn’t even begin to describe this news.
  • It was only a matter of time, but Big Ten expansion rumors involving Texas have popped up in recent days.
  • Nebraska athletic director Tom Osborne said that if the Big Ten were to call, the Cornhuskers would certainly listen.
  • Michigan State changed its mind and is no longer going to change its logo as a result of all the backlash it received over the news.  It is going to change its shade of green, although that’s not really all that big of a deal.

Tuesday Quick Hits: Jibreel Black Commits to Michigan

By · Tuesday, January 26, 2010 · 3:05 AM |  Share | Leave a Comment 
  • Ohio defensive end Jibreel Black committed to Michigan over the weekend.  Black originally committed to Indiana and later switched to Cincinnati before eventually deciding on Michigan.  He has offers from those schools as well as Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan State, Minnesota, NC State, Purdue, South Carolina, Wake Forest, West Virginia, and Wisconsin.  He is a 3-star on Rivals and ESPN and a 4-star on Scout.  Overall it seems like he has a lot of upside as a defensive lineman and is somebody who can contribute early on in his career.
  • With Black on board, Michigan’s recruiting class technically now has 27 players.  It’s probably actually 26, though.  There is no official news on Tony Drake’s status yet, but Scout has already removed him from Michigan’s list of commitments.  Assuming he will not be part of the class and there will be no decommitments or non-qualifiers (that’s a big assumption), Michigan’s class is filled up.  However, there are still two big recruits out there who have yet to choose a school — Sean Parker and Rashad Knight.  Michigan would definitely make room for them if they want to commit, but as it stands right now I believe that would mean another commit or two would have to grayshirt.  There’s no point in speculating just yet, as you never know if the entire class will make it to signing day or if Parker and Knight will even pick Michigan, but it will be interesting to see how it all plays out. (Demar Dorsey ended up committing to Florida State, by the way.)
  • Kelvin Grady has returned to the basketball team.  He approached John Beilein about returning, wondering if he could do anything to help the team.  Beilein saw that he could be a big help in terms of bringing quickness to the scout team, which is where he will likely spend most of his time right now.  It isn’t expected that he will get into a game unless injuries force him to play, because Beilein doesn’t want to burn a year of eligibility this far into the season in case Grady decides to become a two-sport athlete and continue to play basketball in the future.
  • Michigan followed up Friday’s impressive win over Ferris State with a crushing loss in Big Rapids on Saturday.  There wasn’t a ton of action during the first period, but Ferris State led after 20 minutes thanks to a soft shorthanded goal.  Bryan Hogan simply whiffed on the weak shot from a pretty good distance out, letting the Bulldogs go up 1-0.  Michigan answered back in the second period with a power-play goal, but the Bulldogs retook the lead before time expired to go into the third period up 2-1.  Just like the second game of the series against Alaska, Michigan waited and waited but eventually did tie things up with less than two minutes left.  Against FSU on Saturday Michigan went on the power play and Brian Lebler scored on an awesome tip in off of a nice pass from David Wohlberg.  Unfortunately Michigan took a bad penalty (it seemed to be a makeup call more than anything) right after it tied things up.  Ferris State put on the pressure, and following a terrible turnover by Chris Summers in his own zone, the Bulldogs scored with only 24 seconds left to eventually win 3-2.

    This was a tough loss to take considering Michigan was so close to going to overtime and getting a tie.  The fact that Michigan did lose, though, makes this coming weekend’s series with Michigan State all the more important.  MSU has been struggling a bit as of late, and if Michigan could avenge the Spartans’ sweep from earlier this season with one of its own, suddenly the Wolverines’ tournament hopes would be in pretty good shape.  I would settle for a win and a tie and a split at worst.  Another sweep by MSU, though, could be a knockout blow for Michigan’s season.

  • Erin Andrews will be in Ann Arbor for tonight’s game against Michigan State.
  • Purdue’s Chris Kramer and Matt Painter were whining about elbows again on Saturday during the Michigan game.
  • Lost Letterman interviewed Cazzie Russell.
  • Four former Michigan players (Mike Hart and Marlin Jackson for Indy; Adrian Arrington and Jonathan Goodwin for NO) and two former coaches (Terry Malone and Mike Mallory for NO) are going to the Super Bowl.
  • Tai Streets and Desmond Howard played in Curtis Granderson’s celebrity basketball game on Sunday and were asked about Rich Rodriguez.  Jalen Rose and Jimmy King also played in the game, and Lloyd Carr was one of the honorary coaches.
  • Urban Meyer’s leave of absence didn’t last long.

Wednesday Quick Hits: Cullen Christian Commits to Michigan

By · Wednesday, November 25, 2009 · 4:37 PM |  Share | Leave a Comment 
  • Pittsburgh cornerback Cullen Christian committed to Michigan on Tuesday.  Christian is a 4-star recruit who will greatly help Michigan’s secondary in the future.  He is ranked as the sixth-best corner in the nation by Rivals and the third-best by ScoutESPN has him as the #18 CB.  Aside from Michigan, Christian also has offers from Boston College, Cincinnati, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Minnesota, Ohio State, Pittsburgh, Purdue, Rutgers, UCLA, and West Virginia, among many others.  He is the 21st commit in the 2010 class and will definitely be a welcomed addition to Michigan’s secondary when he comes to Ann Arbor.
  • Former goalie commit Jack Campbell explained why he decided to pass up the chance to go to Michigan and instead opted to join the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires.

    “My goal is to be playing in the National Hockey League within a year or two, and I did not want to put Michigan’s hockey program in a bad position where I left after one season,” Campbell said on the site. “By going to the Ontario Hockey League, I feel it will accelerate my development so I will be able to more quickly achieve my goal of being an NHL goaltender.”

    I can understand that, but one season is better than nothing.  I don’t think anybody expected Campbell to come to Michigan and stay for more than a couple years considering he is so talented, so one year would have been more than enough in my book.  It would have presented a situation similar to last year where Billy Sauer was the returning starter but eventually became the backup to Bryan Hogan.  If Campbell had decided to come to Michigan and then took off after only one year, then he would have left with Hogan.  That would have put Michigan in a bit of a tough spot, but even so, one year of Jack Campbell between the pipes would have been a hell of a lot better than him going straight to the OHL.  Now Michigan will have to hope that Bryan Hogan gets his recent issues on the ice straightened out, though that could really be said about the entire team in general.

  • Zoltan Mesko is a first-team Academic All-America selection.
  • Bruce Madej talked about his final moments in Michigan’s press box.
  • Michael Shaw was certainly fired up before the Ohio State game.
  • Mike Hart was waived by the Colts.
  • Jon Runyan is going to run for Congress.
  • Although the details of what led to Jimmy Clausen getting punched in the face are becoming a bit clearer, what role Clausen played in the altercation is unknown.  Sites like ESPN continue to report that he was simply sucker-punched, but it seems like there is much more to this than some random “fan” punching him in the face.
  • Mark Dantonio kicked Glenn Winston and Roderick Jenrette off the Michigan State team on Tuesday “for an unspecified violation of team rules.”  I’m going to go ahead and guess that they were involved in the massive brawl that happened at MSU on Sunday night.  If Winston was indeed involved in the fight, then he is seriously one of the dumbest people ever.  Winston got a second chance and rejoined the MSU team after being released from jail for assaulting a hockey player, and Dantonio received a good amount of criticism for the move.  Winston obviously did something to blow his second chance, and if it was getting in another fight, then it’s obvious that some people just never learn.
  • I am two points out of the lead in Big Ten Bloggers Pick’em.

Tuesday Quick Hits: Forcier, Brown to Start Again This Saturday

By · Tuesday, September 8, 2009 · 4:40 AM |  Share | 1 Comment 
  • Tate Forcier is going to start against Notre Dame, though Rich Rodriguez plans on using a rotation similar to the one we saw in the Western Michigan game.  Basically, it looks like Forcier is the starter, and then Denard Robinson will come in occasionally to change things up a bit.  Forcier is a better passer than Robinson, but Shoelace, as we all saw on Saturday, has unbelievable speed.  Rodriguez also said that he “hopes” to get Nick Sheridan some playing time, but really the only time he should play is if there is an injury or if Michigan has the game wrapped up with time left on the clock in the fourth quarter.
  • Although Brandon Minor’s status is “probable” for the Notre Dame game, Carlos Brown is probably going to get the start.
  • Boubacar Cissoko and Junior Hemingway will likely be donning green limited contact jerseys during practice this week, as both are recovering from injuries.  Cissoko is dealing with a nerve problem in his neck, which is not a new injury, and Hemingway has a sore ankle.  Mark Moundros, who suffered a concussion during the WMU game on special teams, will also be limited this week.  All three players are expected to be good to go on Saturday.
  • Adrian Witty was not cleared by the NCAA and will not be joining Michigan this fall, but the coaches plan on recruiting him again in hopes that he qualifies sometime down the road.
  • Tate Forcier got choked up when he ran out of the tunnel before the WMU game because he was so excited.
  • Obi Ezeh, who was named the co-defensive player of the game by the coaching staff, hurdled over a Western Michigan player on Saturday.
  • Michigan has installed “hand sanitizer stations” in Michigan Stadium to help combat the possible spread of swine flu.
  • UM Hoops has a list of basketball recruits who are expected to visit Michigan for the Notre Dame game.
  • MVictors had a media credential on Saturday and put it to full use.
  • In case you missed it, mgoblog has notes from the press conferences after the WMU game.
  • Click here for video of what Tate Forcier had to say after the game.
  • Mike Hart was cut by the Colts, but he was signed to their practice squad.
  • Terrelle Pryor should probably never speak to the media again about Michael Vick.
  • It looks like the Texas Bowl will be added to the Big Ten’s postseason lineup, and apparently there is some talk that an eighth game could be added.  The eighth tie-in would be a new bowl game played at the Cotton Bowl, which really doesn’t make a ton of sense to me.  It seems like the conference rarely puts a team into the Motor City Bowl, its seventh tie-in, so what’s the point of even bothering with an eighth tie-in?  Multiple Big Ten teams make into the BCS on a frequent basis, moving every team up a slot in the bowl lineup.  Considering how often that happens, I doubt the conference would ever fill an eighth game, and even if they did, how crappy would the matchup itself be?

Friday Quick Hits: Athletic Department Projects Another Surplus

By · Friday, June 19, 2009 · 12:04 PM |  Share | 1 Comment 
  • The athletic department is projecting an $8.8 million operating surplus for FY 2010 (ninth straight year in the black) and a surplus of $10.2 million for FY 2009 that ends on June 30.
  • Once the renovation of Michigan Stadium is complete, Bill Martin will focus on giving Crisler Arena a makeover and replacing the bleachers in Yost Arena.
  • According to Martin, 95% of preferred seat donations were renewed for the 2009 football season. He also joked that another bad season will probably drop that number down and cause this to happen:
    “Rich Rodriguez and I said the other day, and I don’t mind saying it now, that if we go 3-9 again, we’ll both have ‘for sale’ signs in our yards at this time next year,” Martin said.

    If Rodriguez fails as Michigan’s coach, Martin will not be given a chance to hire his replacement, so while it was probably a joke, another bad season could very well create openings at both football coach and athletic director. If Rodriguez were to be fired, Martin would likely be forced out as well.

  • Jeff Rohrkemper is going to join the hockey team for next season.
  • Mike Hart thinks Brandon Minor will have a breakout year.
  • Chris Perry and Grant Mason were drafted by the UFL’s Orlando team.
  • The correct rosters for NCAA Football 10 will be posted on EA Locker in time for the launch of the game, and EA will try to patch online rosters. Another patch to fix ineffective sliders is also in the works, as that part of the game apparently doesn’t work for the second year in a row.

    While it’s nice to see that EA is actually fixing some of these problems, they should not have happened in the first place. This is the second straight year that sliders won’t work out of the box and yet another year that other issues have hampered the launch of the game. The sloppiness displayed by the developers of the game is inexcusable, which is why I’m strongly considering skipping this game for the first time in a long time.

    (BTW, the demo was released yesterday, and it didn’t change my opinion of the game very much. It felt like I was playing Madden 09 more than anything, so I guess I will have to test out the full version before I decide to purchase it or pass on it.)

Monday Quick Hits: Catching Up on Everything

By · Monday, April 27, 2009 · 2:51 AM |  Share | Leave a Comment 
  • Manny Harris and DeShawn Sims are officially coming back to Michigan next season. There wasn’t a whole lot of concern about either of them leaving school early for the NBA, but it is good for all of the speculation to be put to rest.
  • Terrance Taylor and Morgan Trent were the only Michigan players drafted this year. Taylor was picked by the Colts in the fourth round, and Trent was selected by the Bengals in the sixth round. Michigan hasn’t had fewer players drafted since 1994, but they’re not the only school with a smaller than usual number. Miami (Florida) only had one player drafted, which is highly unusual for the U. (BTW, Pat White was picked by the Dolphins in the second round. It will be fun watching him play in the Wildcat.)
  • Michigan is going to play Boston College at Crisler Arena on December 2 as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.
  • If Michigan ever breaks the record for spring game attendance, they won’t be surpassing Alabama anymore. That is because Ohio State broke the record this past Saturday. 95,722 attended the Buckeyes’ spring game, which is pretty remarkable considering there was a $5 admission fee (some of that went to charity). Hopefully a few years from now we see that kind of turnout at the Big House. Now there should be even more incentive to break the record since it belongs to Ohio State.
  • Jason Forcier told Adam Rittenberg that his primary motivation for coming back to Michigan is not football. He wants to return for academic reasons, which should make his chances of receiving a waiver to play for Michigan this fall very good.
  • Some photos of Michigan’s new football practice facility have been posted on Rich Rodriguez’s Facebook fan page.
  • The Hoover Street Rag has video of Michigan’s new drum major.
  • The Big Ten Network recently posted some interviews with former players from the spring game. They interviewed LaMarr Woodley, Steve Breaston, Larry Foote, and Mike Hart.
  • Greg Paulus was scheduled to visit Syracuse on Sunday and will probably end up going to his hometown school if he does decide to pursue football.
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