Friday, December 15, 2017

The Bowl Picks and Other Stuff

20 Years Ago – This Happened!

The Heisman Trophy Voting was in and the hardware went to none other than Charles Woodson from the University of Michigan!

I know I posted on Monday about the discussion 20 years later, but Dr. Sap has a pretty good recap with highlights of how it all went down in 1997.  Marcus Ray was right when he stated that Charles didn’t have a speech prepared – he was winging the whole thing. 
Phil Fulmer had this to say about Charles possibly winning the award:

Sensing that perhaps his QB was losing his lead in the race, Volunteer Coach Phillip Fulmer showed everyone his true colors when he said this about Woodson potentially winning the award: "To me, there's no question in my mind that Peyton's the best player in the country," Fulmer said. "I think he's the best player and the best representative. I keep hearing this about Woodson. I don't know. Maybe they're trying to create competition there to create interest. That's what I hope. All I know is that it would be a travesty."
To his credit, Michigan Lloyd Carr responded much more professionally: "I read the quote from Fulmer, which if it's accurate is extremely tasteless," Carr said. "I just think I have respect for the people who have been given a vote, and it's their choice. For someone to try to influence them, who has something personal to gain, is absolutely in poor taste."

Fulmer’s comments were the worst and I do believe that he was the coach that voted Michigan 4th in the coaches poll after getting pantsed by Nebraska in the Orange Bowl

Phil Fulmer:  May you forever walk the football desert….

And YOU Were Hoping That The Playoff Was Killing The Bowls

Not even close.  Great article about the “Health” of the bowl system and how the Play-Off and ESPN buying the failing non-profit bowls and putting them into the CFP money fodder machine is actually saving the bows! 

So, yeah, ESPN is slowly taking over the sports world.  Whether you like it or not. 


Tuesday in Texas was ugly in a lot of ways, it was good in a lot of ways, and finally, it was a thing of beauty

The Ugly:

I’m sick to my stomach about Wagner’s ankle and hope his injury isn’t serious.
Michigan is still shooting really bad.  Again, I hope this is the mid-season slump that they’re in a little early and everything improves from here.  Michigan goes cold so often I never know when, if ever, they’re going to heat back up.  But they make points when they counted, leading us to:

The Good

Michigan actually won the rebounding battle that no one expected to win against that tree at Texas named Mo Bamba, a 5-star recruit. He had a really lousy game, so, thanks.  And maybe Michigan had something to do with that.    

Wagner, MAAR and Matthews made key shots at key times, when momentum could have changed…Especially MAAR: The Trey Burke like top of the Key, way too high, off the glass 3-pointer he dropped.  And yes, I heard him yell “GLASS!”   Jump to the 1:05 mark (or the 5:00 mark on the game clock in the 2nd half) of the complete game film below and enjoy!

The Beauty

Winning on the road against quality teams is tough.  Whether or not Texas is any good at the end of the season, this gritty win should go a long way towards supporting Michigan’s chances if they’re on the bubble.  I suddenly feel better about this team’s chances, but we have to know more about Mo Wagner.  Hopefully it’s just a minor sprain that they can tape the crap out of it.

Michigan Hoops blog is stating that based on non-con opponents RPI and where Michigan may end up (depending on wins), that he believes 11-12 wins in CONFERENCE are probably necessary to get firmly off the bubble.  It’s hard for me to believe (that would give Michigan 23 or 24 wins, maybe 25 depending on many they win in the B1G Tourney) that a team with that many wins in the B1G doesn’t make the tourney.  Obviously, this is to blame on really SOFT NON-CONFERENCE scheduling.  And Michigan has to take more of a Sparty approach in the future to avoid this kind of crap.  

I just saw a sickening stat that made me throw up a little bit...In my pants. 


Michigan is shooting 62.7 percent from the line, a figure that ranks 335th out of 351 teams. It is the worst percentage for a Beilein team in his 26 seasons as a Division I head coach.

There’s a little-known tie-breaker I use when I’m filling out my brackets for the NCAA Tourney.  If I get to a head to head match-up that looks pretty even on paper, the one stat I fall back on is FT%.  And I always take the team with the higher FT%, always. Got make ‘em from the Charity Stripe. 

No Ifs, Ands or Buts about it: 

Gotta.  Make.  Free – Throws.  PERIOD.

Quick Simmons Observation:  The guy can’t play defense.  He’s going to need to figure out what Michigan is about or lose out to guys that can’t shoot but understand that Michigan will give up the low post, but no free looks at 3-pointers.  They have to be contested. 

You Didn’t Seem All That Excited About Patterson

Well, this is true.  Like I said, I think there were times in his highlight reel that he was taking some unnecessary risks.  I don’t mind that as long as it’s working, but when it isn’t and the train goes off the rails, yeah.  I’d like a steady hand and someone that makes the check down reads and completes passes.  It’s hard to believe that Jake Ruddock is going to have been the best QB to play under Harbaugh in 4 seasons.  But that’s where it stands. 
You Don’t Think Fisher Was an “A” Hire?
Nope.  And I’ll gladly place a bet that says that Texas A&M has buyer’s remorse sooner rather than later.  But A&M had to have their guy.  Fisher’s last 3 seasons in Tallahassee have been a “disappointment” (He was 25-12 in those 3 seasons) and if you read any of the blogs, there weren’t a ton of tears shed by the fans with Fisher’s departure.  Everything will look different next season and we’ll see who is good and who’s going through the motions.  But it will be fun to watch Taggart and Fisher for the next couple of years.
The Bowl Picks
Every Year I do this as a way to get the betting to a positive if I’m down.  I’m down this year as The Army Navy Game did nothing to pad my account (I should have looked at the weather and I would have definitely changed my bet on the OVER).  Anyway, The Matrix with the Puke Factor and all (Ignore that 2016 - This is 2017!  Too lazy to retake the picture...):

So, there’s actually an interesting bowl game on tomorrow, right in the “Sweet Spot” of the day at 3:30!  This should be a great excuse to get out of Christmas Shopping if asked!  Oregon’s new Coach Cristobal will be in his first game and I suspect that Oregon will be pumped up and ready to play.  However, Oregon’s all time leading rusher is sitting the game OUT!!!  Boise State it is!  That was an easy pick. 

As for the rest?  Always go with the team closest to the venue that might bring in some fans.  Look for pissed off teams (Sparty) that may feel they were slighted and should be playing on New Year’s Day.  Undefeated teams (UCF) are going to be motivated to put a mark on their program’s history.  Other than that, it’s a crap shoot.  Some years, I’ve done great.  Others…Not so much.  Especially ATS
I’m a curious fellow by nature and decided to start looking up where some of the names of these bowls came from.  I hope this isn’t wasting your time!
And this is a Camellia.  I had no idea what the thing was. 

And this is Jose Gaspar, a Pirate that lived in Florida near Tampa. 

His nickname was “Gasparilla” and is now the name used for the Gasparilla Pirate Festival
that they hold annually in late January.  And a link to Jose if you want to learn more!

I’ve been told I’m a bit na├»ve at times for not knowing what something is.  I had no idea this was a “thing”, so I guess sponsoring a bowl for advertising works!  Cheribundi Tart Cherry Juice is real.  I like FAU getting 17 in this game and will wager some dough. 

Frisco” is the name of a metropolis in Texas.  Okay – maybe not a metropolis.  But it’s right here on the map just north of the Big “D” – Looky:

Because they have a mascot and I think you know where Idaho is, I’m putting in a picture of the mascot. 

Etc. – Dedicated To The Debacle In East Lansing
The Michigan House Speaker Calls For MSU President Simon to Resign
Finally.  At least someone is paying attention to what the hell is going on.  I’m sure she won’t, but at least someone is suggesting it.    
Wetzel Comes Down HARD On Sparty And The Nassar Mess
And is starting to ask the questions who knew what and when did they know?  As Dan stated, heads should be rolling all over the place…
The News Also Chimes In As Sparty’s Dean Of Osteopathic Medicine Takes A Leave
Strempel, probably the guy that did the most to enable Nassar, is stepping down from his Dean’s position.  The howls are growing louder from the victims and students alike.  Protests are planned on the day the board of trustees meets to vote on a raise for Simon…

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

The MMQ - Tuesday Edition

Once Again, Monday Business Gets In The Way..

Of the really important stuff.  Like the MMQ.

But, you can always do a Tuesday Edition, and here it is.   I’ll probably post Friday again with the Bowl Bracket. 

The Michigan Basketball Season Just Stayed Interesting

If you didn’t see it (shame on you for not tuning in), the Michigan Men’s Hoopsters just kept the season interesting.   Coming back from a 15-point deficit on Saturday to take the Bruins to OT in a Crisler Classic, the outcome was a lot better than what anyone anticipated with 10 minutes and change left. 

What was looking like another Columbus debacle finally turned in Michigan’s favor after they overcame yet ANOTHER abysmal shooting performance.  I’m really HOPING this current level/performance regarding shooting is an anomaly (and there’s a lot of data out there on Michigan that suggests that) and not the season’s norm.  If Michigan collectively can get back in the groove, everything should be fine. 

It would appear that Zavier Simpson is emerging as the Trey Burke  - Derrick Walton replacement as the much needed take charge PG.  Beilein’s offense needs to have a take charge guy, and Simpson did exactly that late in the game against UCLA.  He ignited the offense and got everyone going on defense as well. And Matthews needs to learn HOW TO MAKE A FREE THROW! 


Michigan plays again tonight at Texas, which would also be a nice win to have.  Texas has lost to two respectable games to Gonzaga and Duke, and both losses were on the road.  They haven’t really played anyone else, so it’s difficult to gauge how good they actually are. 

Game Info:
Time:  9:00

Regardless, winning in Austin would be a resume builder as the next three non-con games aren’t even in the RPI top 150

I’m not sure Texas will finish in the RPI top 100, but beat them never the less….

Patterson Is Coming

Everyone seems to believe that Shea Patterson is coming.  Several Ole Miss blogs are calling it as “Already Done” even though I won’t believe it until he’s actually on campus and in a dorm room

I’m a little ticked off at everyone getting on Harbaugh for not “Sticking with his guys”.  First, Patterson was recruited by Michigan 3 years ago, and he was recruited hard.  Part of Patterson going to Ole Miss is what landed Michigan Peters and McCaffery.
I don’t think either one of those guys would transfer at this point and I also don’t think Patterson is a “lock” for starting QB.  Let’s give Peters another game and see what comes of the transfers.  I watched Patterson’s highlight reel again and got a few queasy feelings on some of the throws he was making.  He’ll get himself out of jams, but he’s going to need to develop and mature. 

Patterson’s center in High School (the IMG academy) Cesar Ruiz, plays for Michigan and had nothing but praise for his former Team mate:

“I think he’d be a good fit in anybody’s program,” Ruiz said. “He a great quarterback.”
Patterson is a “cool dude” according to Ruiz and easy to get along with. He also described him as a “funny, goofy dude.” Patterson did tell The Detroit News he was having a good time on his visit.
On whether or not he’ll be immediately eligible?  Patterson hired the same lawyer that Houston Nutt went after OIe Miss with.  Think the NCAA is going to want to stand out and say that Hugh Freeze DIDN’T Lie about the seriousness of the violations when he was recruiting dudes?  My guess is the one year of sitting out is waived and Patterson will be eligible.

With Patterson, You Get Some Other Dudes, Too…
It seems that when you get Patterson, you get another couple of dudes that could help with depth at certain positions.  Safety Deontay Anderson and receiver Van Jefferson are also looking at taking Michigan up on a transfer.  Jefferson would be a nice add to the receiver corps on Michigan’s squad and is a favorite target of Patterson.  Two seasons and he’s averaged 45 catches and right around 500 yards/season.   Anderson’s bio for 2016 was about what you’d expect for a safety. 
Grading The Hires
Now that the Coaching Carousel has slowed down to almost a complete stop, I thought it might be interesting to note which hires were grand-slams and which ones had us all shaking our heads. 
The “A-List”
Chip Kelly – UCLA.  This hire was about as good as you could hope to do.  It was a bit of a surprise when Chip turned down Florida, but according to everyone that knows Chip, he doesn’t like politics and just wants to coach.  In fact, Kelly apparently do a lot of recruiting, either.  So he’s going to need some good assistants.  Let’s watch and see who he gets.
Taggart – FSU.  This was an unfortunate fall-out from the Jimbo Fisher fiasco.  I don’t think Taggart was planning a “One and Done” at Oregon, but the FSU job makes a lot of sense for Taggart who’s a Florida kid from Bradenton. 
Mullen – Gatorland.  In my opinion, this guy should have been #1 on the list.  Mullen coached at Florida, he GETS Florida, and he I think he’ll be a great fit at Florida.  Chasing Kelly and Frost just didn’t make sense for Gatorland. 
Frost – Nebraska.  This was another very good hire and we’ll see how it works out in Lincoln.  This has the same exact feel of “Harbaugh to Michigan” and I think Frost will be given plenty of time to make it work. 
The “I See What You Did There.  I Hope It Works Out For You” List
Jimbo Fisher – Texas A&M.  The more I think about and look at this hire, the more it has me shaking my head.  First, I get why A&M had to part ways with Sumlin.  But Fisher had a great thing going in Tallahassee and I think the fans mostly supported him.  He will be getting a little more cash than he was getting at FSU, but does that make sense for both parties?  The kicker here is A&M coughing up Harbaugh- Saban money for a guy that won a NC with Winston on his team.  I guess he needs to find another QB’s tail to ride and hope that it works.  How will A&M fans feel paying an extra $3M annually for 2 additional wins on average?  Assuming he can get to 9-10 per season in the SEC West?  Again, I’ll stand by my 50-50 chances I originally gave this hire. 
Moorehead – MSU.  I like this hire for MSU, but while Moorehead has proven himself on the offensive side of the ball, he needs to find a good D-Coordinator (and he plucked a defensive coach from PSU on his way out the door), so we’ll see.  I think the MSU job is a stepping stone position and if Moorehead proves himself, we’ll see him somewhere else in 3 years.
Chad Morris – Arkansas.  The former high-school and head coach at SMU did some good things, but does being the coach at SMU immediately qualify you for an SEC West gig?  Again, hope this works, but not holding my breath. 
Josh Heupel – UCF.  This seems to be a good hire on the surface and Huepel will have a full cupboard to work with.  However, if UCF finishes the season un-defeated with a win over Auburn, it’s going to be hard going next season when he loses his first game.  Not saying this was a bad hire, but you have to follow the much-loved Frost.  And that sucks…
The “I have NO FRIGGIN’ CLUE What You Were Thinking” List
Matt Luke – Ole Miss.  Ole Miss did what they had to do because there was no way anyone else was going to touch that job at this point. 
Herm Edwards – Arizona State.  Jeez.  From a shaky introduction press conference to some other stuff that’s come out of Herm’s mouth (like not knowing what a football “tight fit” game jersey looked like, it’s just looking like a really, REALLY bad hire.  If I was an ASU fan, I’m not sure I’d be reviewing my tix…
Pruitt – Tennessee.  This one puzzles me the more I look at it.  He’s longest tenure with any one team has been a little over 2 years.  He’s never been a head coach and has only been a DC for about 5 years.  I know that Tennessee had been through a lot of offers for a lot of guys that ended up saying no, so if this works, great. 
Mario Cristobal – Oregon.  In what last year looked like an act of brilliance by Oregon getting Taggart to leave USF, this one is a bit of a head scratcher.  I know the entire team signed a letter and gave it to the AD saying, “Keep Mario”.  But you’re now kind of letting the inmates run the asylum, which is never a good idea.  Again, I hope it works out for you. 
The NCAA Has Never Had Control
Great article about the nutless NCAA. 

Friday, December 8, 2017

The FMQ Week #15 - Army vs. Navy

The Best Story You’ll Read Today!
Having lived an episode of this story when I used to visit the Nissan Assembly plant in Smyrna, Tennessee, in the middle 2000’s, this article brought a big ole smile to my face…
One of the funniest Tennessee comments if from OL player Teague:
Teague: Brian still can't see through the maize and blue and be objective on that subject. [Teague and Griese were teammates on the Broncos.] Brian's a great guy, but he's blinded by that ugly helmet.
My story: I accidentally (maybe) wore a Michigan Polo shirt to the Tennessee plant one day and an engineer I was working with literally handed me his lab/shop coat.  I said, “I didn’t know we were touring the plant today.”  His response: “We’re not.  But I’m afraid I’m gonna’ punch you if I have to look at you in that shirt!” 
Yep – Tennessee fans will never forget!!!
Coaching Carousel
Speaking of Tennessee, Fulmer has offered the HC job to Alabama’s Defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt.  Where’s the Torch and Pitchfork crowd in Knoxville, now???  
Background:  first of all, Tennessee and Bama HATE each other.  I mean, HATE.  Pruitt is a Bama kid born and raised, played for Bama and has coached at Bama.  This would be akin to Michigan hiring former suckeye linebacker Chris Spielman as head coach…
I can’t believe this would sit that well with ANYONE that’s wearing Volunteer Orange.
But hey, what do I know?  I guess they have faith and trust in Fulmer…The Coach they all hated and wanted fired in 2008.
Can We Fire Emmert NOW And PLEASE Make Jay Bilas Head of the NCAA???
In what I can only describe as the most idiotic thing yet to come out of the mouth of Emmert, he had this to say about Ball’s withdrawal from UCLA:

In case you hadn’t heard, Ball’s indefinite suspension for shoplifting prompted his dad to pull him out of the university.  Emmert’s response to that is above. 
What a tool…Can’t the University AD’s and President’s sign a petition to get him thrown out?  There are so many better options out there….
Here’s What the Street-Walkers and Strippers In Columbus Will Be Wearing on New Year’s Eve….
Cause nothing says I support my team like stripper stilletos!

Is Baker Mayfield The Best Ever?
Heard a couple of other tools on Sirius Radio debating whether or not we would be calling Baker Mayfield “The Best College Player Ever” after he wins the Heisman and potentially wins the NC.  Baker’s stats are off the charts (his passer rating right now is over 200) and he will have thrown for close to (or probably over with potentially two games left) 5,000 yards in one season.  Looky:

Impressive, I get that.  And there will probably be a new landslide record in the voting…
But college football is different now.  The offense that the Laters run let’s him put up numbers like that.  But he still has to execute and make the throws
First, to say that any ONE player is the best-ever is ignorant.  I don’t even know where I would start my list, but it’s almost impossible to determine.  A player can’t be great unless he’s surrounded by other great players.  Woodson would NOT have had the season he had in 1997 unless Weathers, Peterson, Taylor, Marcus Ray and Hendricks weren’t great, also.  Offenses would have just avoided him altogether and gone towards the weakness, which they tried to do, anyway. 
I started thinking about who’d be in my top 10 and that got to be difficult as well.  Then I thought, “What about just ranking Heisman trophy winners?”  So, with a little help from internet, I came up with this (My ranking is two-fold - Objective and Subjective:   stats and excitement factor, each considered equally plus if it carried over to the next level):
1.    Barry Sanders – hands down probably the best RB in all of college football and had an impressive 2,850 rushing yards and 44 TD’s.   Plus NFL follow-up He’s the top of my list.  It’s sad that the Lions never put the right players and a better defense together when they had Barry.
2.    Marcus Allen – 2.427 yards and 22 TD’s.  Still holds or shares 14 NCAA records…and Superbowl champ and NFL MVP.
3.    Desmond Howard23 Total TD’s and still holds 5 NCAA records.  And NFL stuff like “Super Bowl Champion”.  Plus, Heisman voting was 2nd LARGEST MARGIN of victory in the history of the trophy when he won.  (Now 3rd largest).   And there’s this, which was also a first
4.    Charles Woodson – First Ever Defensive Player to win the trophy and was a complete difference maker and while there aren’t stats to support it, I don’t know how you keep him out of any Top 10 Players of All Time list, especially when you consider what he continued to do in the NFL. And Yeah, this too:
5.    Tony Dorsett – 2,105 yards and 23 TD’s and NFL stuff…
6.    Cam Newton – ran for 20 TD’s and threw 28 TD’s and won the NC and was exciting to watch. 
7.    Reggie Bush – 2,218 yards rushing and 18 TD’s.  Always wanted to watch Bush play.
8.    Herschel Walker – 1,752 yards and 17 TD’s in the SEC. 
9.    Matt Leinart – Would have won the Heisman twice with the exception that Bush was on his team!!! 
10. Tim Tebow – Ran for 20 TD’s and threw for 20 TD’s.  First QB to ever pull that off.  But no NFL stuff.
So, where do I slide Mayfield in?  It’s difficult with the Running Backs mixed in because what they do is so different than what QB’s do.  I guess, based on statistics alone, I’d put him either right above Tim Tebow, but I’m allowed to move him around depending on what he does in the NFL. I really think I should have him below Desmond on the “Excitement” scale, just because you held your breath every time the ball got anywhere near Dez.  I don’t always feel that same excitement with Mayfield.   OF course, I could say he has to be below Woodson, too, and I may have Woodson too low on my rank.  This NFL ranking of Heisman guys has Woodson #1.  But I’m trying to rank the College performances…
Which is another discussion.  I’m not sure the “Mayfield Game” translates very well to the next level.  He’s short.   I know, I know.   “Drew Brees and Russell Wilson”.  And I’ve got Griffin, Manziel, Flute, Brady Quinn, and a whole lot of 6 foot-ish QB’s that played great college ball and flamed out in the pros.  It’s a different game. 
I guess we’ll see on that, won’t we?  And the NFL Scouts agree with me…Or I agree with them, I guess.
I won’t say it’s time to hit the panic button yet, but Michigan is kind of in “Must Win” mode with UCLA and Texas in the next two gamesAt 7-3, they desperately need these wins to have “resume” wins come Tourney time.  Right now, I don’t see this squad winning more than 9 games in the B1G, so these two games could be the ones that help get them off the bubble...  
Hurst Might Just “Sit This One Out”
Mo Hurst is debating whether or not to play in the Outback Bowl.  As a lock 1st round pick, again, he’s probably asking himself, “Why?”  Look what happened to Jake Butt (ACL injury in last year’s Orange Bowl) and has probably even texted him a couple of times.  I wouldn’t blame Hurst in the least if he wanted to take this one off.

Jeez…That was a tough week.  The championships cost me money.  The PUSHES really suck and goes to show again how this can be a hard way to make a buck.

With only one game on the docket, I gotta make it count…
Army Vs. Navy (-3   O/U 46):  Crap.  I hate tight spreads.  Army has thrown the ball sparingly this season and in 4 games, didn’t throw the ball at all!  But they are sitting at 8-3 and looking to, uh, right the ship in the rivalry with Navy, who had won 14 in row up until last season, when Army beat the middies.  I like the Black Knights to make it two in a row this season and start a new trend. 
Take Army and the 3 for $50
Take the OVER for $50
Parlay:  4:1  Army and the Over for $50 
Guy gets a petition going to get Baker Mayfield’s statue to be of him doing the flag plant at the suckeyes mid-field.  Already has 4,000 signatures!
Why Aren’t There MORE Heads Rolling In East Lansing?
Nassar got 60 years for all the sex crimes he committed on student athletes.  What I want to know is:  Where is the Sandusky outrage?  Why haven’t the “Enablers” been identified in all of this?  Especially his immediate boss?  Can anyone answer that?  Where’s Emmert handing down the Death Penalty to Sparty Athletics???
The Outback in East Lansing Is Losing Customers At A Dramatic Rate

The Outback restaurant in East Lansing has seen business fall off by almost 50% according to a local report.  Are East Lansing people really that cheesed off about being snubbed by the restaurant chain?  Apparently

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Mid-Week Round-Up!!

The End Of An Era

Some of you may or may not have heard that last Sunday’s first attempt to bring down the Silverdome kind of didn’t work…In fact, it was still standing on Monday.  I was driving home Monday afternoon (I work right across the street from the Silverdome) and saw the police and a few by-standers out en-force, so I stopped in the left turn lane on Featherstone directly north of the Silverdome and turned on my video camera (phone).  As they Say, Timing is EVERYTHING!  (sorry for the orientation!  I thought I fixed it but it isn't uploading the correction...)

Turn up the volume!

That voice you hear is me.  It was LOUD!!!  You could feel the double shock wave of the explosives and then the ensuing wave from the collapse.  And the dust cloud was HUGE!!!
We’ll miss you Silverdome.  I had a lot of fond memories there.

I Apparently Hit Some Nerves on Monday…

I got a LOT of feedback from Monday’s post, particularly regarding the fact that the Committee decided to put 2 SEC teams into the CFP.

This is a cardinal sin with some of you…I get that. 

Look, the way I see it, and I know I’m repeating myself, the Committee hasn’t gotten it right from the start and have made a mistake in each of the first 3 seasons of the CFP.  In year one, it was no Big iiX team (either TCU or Baylor were worthy) and they selected the eventual CFP Champion suckeyes

Year 2 SHOULD have been the suckeyes, but they instead claimed that the B1G Conference Champion Sparty was better than the 1-loss but massively loaded with NFL talent suckeye squad.  Sparty went on to get destroyed by Bama on New Year’s Eve, embarrassing the Committee and creating an unwatchable game.

In year 3, The Committee F’d up again by selecting the suckeyes when they were clearly the 3rd best team in the conference (PSU and Michigan each had 2 losses with way better players and either team was clearly better statistically at that point).
So, yeah, this season was a mess for the #4 position when Wiscy couldn’t take care of business in Indy.  The Committee had to hold its nose and make a decision between the suckeyes, Bama, and I’m sure that USC was brought up.  The suckeyes lost 55-24 at Kinnick.  Bama hasn’t beaten anyone in the top 15 and had a really weak schedule.  And USC got clobbered by the 3-loss Domers.  The deciding factors: The Suckeyes flaws were greater than Bama’s weaknesses.  And Satan doesn’t lose Blow-Out games.  And as I stated, Bama will be close to 100% with respect to healthy players.  Vegas had Bama as a 1-point favorite over the suckeyes…And right now, the Clemson – Bama game is EVEN in Vegas.  I wouldn’t be surprised if Bama wins the whole damn thing.  But this is EXACTLY what everyone wanted.

So, was it a close decision?  Sure.  Would I have been happy if they would have picked the Suckeyes?  I dunno.  Probably not...  I would have been happy that Bama was out (because we shouldn’t be rewarding weak schedules and a team that doesn’t even play in the conference Championship) but I don’t think the suckeyes would be able to beat Bama on a neutral field this season

When you put the decision into the hands of a committee, and not just taking the 4 highest ranked Conference Champs, well, you’re going to have issues like this.
Take it out of the hands of the committee and just say the top 4 Conference champs regardless of record and losses (by final ranking) and you get your wish.  Better yet, go to 6 or 8 teams, take the Conf Champs and 3 at large.  Everyone will be happy! 
Sparty Fans To Boycott the Outback

I got a lot of feedback on the B1G being “fixed for Michigan” and why even bother playing the regular season if the Bowl’s just end up choosing whoever they want?
Sparty DESERVES TO BE PLAYING ON NEW YEAR’S DAY!!!”  The Bowls have been more or less choosing whoever they want for decades.  Nothing has changed, there’s just a twist this season.

It’s a trivial thing and it wouldn’t have happened if Wiscy would have done its job.  When Wiscy lost to the suckeyes, the pecking order of the B1G’s Bowl Tie ins shifted and the other “At Large Bowl” The Orange, selected Wiscy from the field of best available teams.  Unfortunately, there’s a little-known codicil in the Bowl Constitution that says when a B1G Team is playing in the Orange Bowl (or any conference, for that matter), the Citrus in Orlando is not allowed to have another team from the same conference, which screwed up Sparty’s New Year’s Day Bowl destination which they were slotted to play.  The Outback had already made its selection of Michigan.  The Outback has no affiliation with either the Orange or the Citrus.  The deal with the Outback was signed, sealed and delivered before Saturday.  Then, Saturday happened and Sparty got bumped to the next tier on the bowl ladder – the Holiday

Add in to the mix that Michigan gets better ratings than Sparty and it all makes sense. 
Shit happens.  Get over it.

But I will say that it’s nice to be playing the 6th place SEC team vs. the 4th place team as 2 SEC teams are in the play-off, moving everyone in that conference up another notch. 
They’re all meaningless bowls anyway…Early Lines:  Michigan 7.5 favorite over South Carolina and Sparty a 4.5 dog to Wash State...

And Of Course, This Is Now A Thing…

Harbaugh and D’Antoinsuo are taking Twitter shots at each other after the above mentioned debacle regarding the bowls.  D’Antoinsuo started it with a sleight against Michigan and Harbaugh followed up with a salty congrats on the Sparty turnaround season despite “all the off-field issues”. 


What’s The Deal-io about Ole Miss QB Shea Patterson? has the best summary of what’s happening with Ole Miss and the seniors that can transfer immediately due to NCAA sanctions.  Ole Miss QB phenom Shea Patterson requested his release and is interested in Michigan.  Highlight Reel:

Michigan would be foolish NOT to have some interest in Shea as depth at QB is non-existent for next season.  It would be tricky as Brian points out with respect to Peters, who at one point was rumored to transfer (but his father said all BS) and one more year sitting on the bench.  Still, any QB help should be embraced by everyone.
There’s a few other players at Ole Miss that are looking at Michigan, also.  In fact, there will be 3 players from Ole Miss in Ann Arbor this weekend!  Including an OT that could really help out!

MMPG  - How In The Hell Do You Lose A College Hoops Game When You Have a 20 Point Lead?

I’m still a little ill after Monday’s Michigan Men’s Hoops debacle down in Columbus.  Long story short:  Michigan was leading this game by as much as 20 in the 1st half and the score was 43-30 Michigan at halftime.  Michigan came out in the second half and shot the poorest of ANY TEAM OF THE BEILEIN ERA for one half of basketball.  I don’t know what to say here except that sometimes you get outliers on the ‘ole bell curveThink of this as a 6-sigma event.  Michigan only scored 19 2nd half points.  It should never, EVER happen again.  

I think…

The Numbers:

FG% 2nd half:     5-29       17.2%
3FG% 2nd Half:  1-12        0.083%!!!!!

This is a “Live By The 3, Die By The 3” issue.  I’ll still take a 3-point attempt over a 2-point attempt all day, but Jeez-Louise, MAKE SOME SHOTS!!!

The Coaching Carousel Tracker

Fisher leaves FSU High and Dry.

In what was only a rumor 3 weeks ago, Texas A&M proved to be ready to do the right things at the Head Coaching Football position and went after and got Jimbo Fisher.  After 8 seasons with the Seminoles, Fisher decided he’d done all that he could for FSU and jumped into the SEC West Mess with a contract reportedly worth $75M over 10 Seasons.…I give him 50-50 odds of succeeding at A&M.  Jimbo Fisher is 0-11 against Satan and all Satan Coaching Tree Descendants.   

Because we still need a score card:

UCF makes a great move and hires former OU QB Josh Heupel!  This is a great hire as he was the offensive coordinator at surging Mizzou and he will keep the UCF train rolling along!

Chad Morris of SMU is the rumored next coach to be at Arkansas.  Should be a decent hire, but not a lot of splash….

FSU made the pitch and landed Willie Taggart.  He’ll be happier in Florida, of that I’m sure.  The Question is:  What does Oregon do in Coach Search Year #2?   

The hire that is now taking forever?  Tennessee, who else?  After dick-tripping their way all over the country throwing money and a contract at whoever would listen, Fulmer seems to be taking his time and losing valuable recruiting time before the early signing period. 

FSU May Be The Biggest Disappointment
From another loyal reader questioning the MMQ’s, in particular the most disappointing team.  I agree that FSU was a “Top 4” team on a LOT OF PRE-SEASON Lists!  Mine included, especially after the way they played Michigan in the Orange last year and the fact that their QB and most of that defense was returning.  How could you NOT like them?  Lose your starting QB and some other folks and it all goes to hell.  And then lose their coach?  Okay, I could change my mind, but Tennessee is a train wreck, too
This Is Becoming The New Trend – Players Continue To Bow Out Of Bowl Games
And if you’re blaming them, I’m guessing you’re the same person(s) that doesn’t want them to be compensated for their efforts on the field.  I personally have no issue with this whatsoever.  And it wouldn’t surprise me to see more players taking this position that AREN’T Declaring for the NFL draft.  Why risk your own future for a meaningless bowl trophy?