Posts tagged Michigan Wolverines
Posts tagged Michigan Wolverines
In this week’s Dash, Pat Forde tackles Auburn’s emotionless sideline veteran, the great Heisman dilemma and also gives out his “Dashie” awards for this season.
Another article that criticizes the Big Ten’s handling of the brawl between Ohio State and Michigan. Forde is an excellent sports writer and one of my favorites.
LEGENDS, LEADERS, LUNATICS AND A LACK OF FORTITUDE
It was a chippy and at times downright disgraceful final Saturday of football in the Big Ten. The kickoff brawl between Ohio State (12) and Michigan (13) sullied a splendid, dramatic renewal of a great rivalry. And on Friday against Iowa, there was the in-game and post-game idiocy from Nebraska coach Bo Pelini (14), who in the face of adversity continues to show the composure of a rabid squirrel.
Then the administrators stepped in to minimize, enable and brush it all way.
Oh, there were more reprimands there: to Buckeyes starting offensive guard Marcus Hall (15) for throwing a punch and the OSU coaching staff for failing to get Hall out of the stadium before he went full-on wrestling heel. But in a decision that harkens back to the efforts of commissioner Jim Delany (16) to lobby for Terrelle Pryor & Co. to play for Ohio State in the 2011 Sugar Bowl after violating NCAA rules, Hall was not suspended.
Why? Because the Buckeyes are in position to play for the national title, but first must beat Michigan State and its No. 1 defense Saturday in the Big Ten championship game. And gentleman Jim wouldn’t want Ohio State at less than full strength for that game.
So Hall will play, despite coming off the bench to punch a Michigan player, slamming his helmet to the turf, kicking a bench and then firing twin-barreled obscene gestures at the Michigan Stadium stands on his way out. For a league that ranks among the national leaders (if not legends) in pious rhetoric about class and character, here was the unapologetic opposite in action.
And the Big Ten’s response, after Urban Meyer went Pontius Pilate, washed his hands and left it up to the league? Suit up, son. There are BCS checks to collect, and a reputation to salvage. A football reputation, that is.
In desperate pursuit of that, the Big Ten’s standards for acceptable behavior are clearly negotiable.
But seriously, can Jim Delany get fired? Who makes that decision? Can I start a petition? Actually, no, let him keep that job until I am done with college and work my way up in the system. I would LOVE to be the one that takes Delany’s job from him. BLAH! I would love to see Michigan State’s AD Mark Hollis replace Delany. But at the same time, I don’t want to lose him at MSU’s AD.
The Big Ten finally has a championship game that rivals the SEC’s in national significance. Unfortunately, the Big Ten is following the SEC’s lead in another area: handing out discipline.
This was the other big news about the Big Ten today. Completely agree with Rittenberg on this one. Big Ten dropped the ball and is just trying to protect the Buckeyes. Pathetic.
The Big Ten is falling back on the NCAA’s fighting policy, which calls for players ejected in the first half of a game to miss only the remainder of that game. Although the league has issued suspensions before for throwing punches, they have come for players who weren’t ejected during the game.
The league had an opportunity to do more and show that behavior like Saturday’s, even in a bitter rivalry game, is unacceptable and has long-term consequences. Monday’s wimpy response will be seen as an effort to protect the league’s title game and one of its biggest brands in Ohio State.
Even a half-game suspension, which the SEC probably has trademarked, would have shown some teeth here. Instead, the Big Ten protects its championship game from being affected, and its biggest brand from being impacted in its quest to reach the national title game.
Monday’s response will add to the widely held belief by many Big Ten fan bases that the league goes all out to protect Ohio State and Michigan. The response will bring more heat for league commissioner Jim Delany, who still gets ripped for going to bat for Ohio State’s “Tat-5” to play in the 2011 Sugar Bowl.
The championship game is a national showcase opportunity for the Big Ten, a chance to display its best product and the values it holds so dear. You’ll hear a lot about honoring legends and building leaders, and big lives and big stages.
"As bad as it was, we’re fortunate the incident did not escalate any further," the Big Ten’s SECtatement reads. “More can, and should, be done by both coaching staffs in the future to prevent similar incidents.”
The Big Ten could have and should have done more, but chose to do the bare minimum.
Wait, remember when Michigan State’s William Gholston got suspended a game after he punched Michigan’s Taylor Lewan. If you watch the video below, Lewan was holding Gholston’s head down by the face mask.
And wait… remember how dirty Lewan played vs. Michigan State this year and didn’t even get ejected OR disciplined afterwards?
Three players are ejected from Ohio State-Michigan following a fight. Buckeyes Dontre Wilson and Marcus Hall as well as Wolverines Royce Jenkins-Stone are asked to leave field.
Marcus Hall salutes the Big House crowd. #rivalry
This game has been INSANE.
Michigan is winning 21-14 with 12:32 left in the 2nd.
There was a HUGE brawl between the two teams.
OSU’s starting lineman Marcus Hall and running back Dontre Wilson were ejected. As Hall was leaving the field, he flipped off the fans.
Michigan’s only player ejected was back up linebacker Royce Jenkins-Stone.
Michigan offensive tackle and projected first-round NFL draft choice Taylor Lewan stood on the sidelines in Spartan Stadium and watched as “little brother”, a (…)
From a Notre Dame site, but still very interesting perspective. I’m not sure of the accuracy of all the recruiting information, particularly around Campbell, but still interesting nonetheless.
"Michigan State huffed, puffed, and blew “big brother’s” Big House down, and changed the dynamics of recruiting in the process. And now the Alabamas, Ohio States and Notre Dames are scavenging the cracking foundation to solidify their own."
Michigan dodged a bullet against Northwestern, winning 27-19 in triple overtime. Two times in the fourth quarter, the Wolverines were deep in the red zone but came away with only a single field goal for their efforts.
Trailing 9-6 with time running out, Michigan was in position for a potential game-tying field goal. That is until quarterback Devin Gardner was sacked for a loss of 13 yards to knock the team out of field-goal range.
Michigan appeared to be headed for its third straight defeat until Gardner hit wide receiver Jeremy Gallon for a 16-yard gain to get them back in range two plays later. But Gallon couldn’t get out of bounds to stop the clock, and Michigan was forced to run their field-goal team on the field as time ran down.
Placekick holder Drew Dileo got in position and took the snap just in time for kicker Brendan Gibbons to make the 44-yard, game-tying kick.
Michigan was barely set long enough to run its final play.
Michigan then won the game in overtime, scoring two touchdowns and a field goal to beat Northwestern, 27-19.
Lost in the drama is that the Michigan offense has scored a lone touchdown in the past 12 quarters of regulation.
Quarterback Devin Gardner was sacked an additional five times versus Northwestern for a loss of 40 yards. With two regular-season games left, Gardner has been sacked 19 times this month alone and narrowly avoided throwing multiple interceptions to Northwestern defenders who had their hands on numerous passes but we couldn’t make plays.
How bad was the Michigan offense in regulation? Early in the fourth quarter, Northwestern shanked a punt from its own end zone and gave Michigan a 1st-and-goal from the 10-yard line.
In four plays, Michigan lost a yard before settling for a 28-yard field goal from Brendan Gibbons.
On its next drive, Michigan moved the ball down to a 3rd-and-2 at the Northwestern 4-yard line. Running back De’Veon Smith was stopped for no gain before Gardner lost a yard trying to convert the fourth down.
A touchdown on either of these two drives would have given Michigan a good opportunity to win the game during regulation.
While Michigan failed to score a touchdown until overtime, the running game did post positive yardage, something it failed to do in its previous two games. Running backs Derrick Green (19 carries for 79 yards) and Smith (nine carries for 39) were more successful finding holes than previous starter Fitzgerald Toussaint, who didn’t play in this game.
The final score looks respectable, but it was bolstered by both teams having success moving the ball in overtime. This game was dominated by kickers, either punting or making field goals.
Both teams only scored touchdowns when punting wasn’t an option in overtime.
Michigan still hopes to win 10 games this season and desperately needed a victory after two consecutive losses.
The game was a victory, but the Michigan offense is still searching for ways to protect Gardner and consistently move the ball behind a lackluster offensive line.
With only two games remaining, including a season finale with Ohio State, those answers can’t come soon enough.
So what if the Big Ten hasn’t won a championship since 2000? It’s still an elite conference. Really.
“When I saw that Mitch McGary was a first-team preseason AP All-American, I spit out my coffee, wiped off my computer screen with a rag, wrung the coffee back into my cup, took another gulp, and spit that out too. I touched on my concerns about McGary in a footnote, so I won’t rehash them all here. Instead, I’ll focus on another reason I was shocked to see McGary named a first-team preseason All-American — he’s not even the best big man in the Big Ten.”
Me too Mark, me too.
^ Yep… me three.
"But here’s the biggest reason why Michigan State is a lock to make the Final Four: Every single four-year player under Tom Izzo has made at least one Final Four. As it happens, the last time Michigan State made the Final Four was 2010, when Payne and Appling were seniors in high school. What I’m saying here is that betting on the Spartans to make it to Dallas in March isn’t gambling — it’s an investment."
“Most experts are picking Michigan ahead of Ohio State, probably because they have man crushes on Mitch McGary. In what will come as no surprise and will probably inspire jerkoff hand gestures from some of you…”
I made that gesture…
"Payne’s play remained somewhere between underwhelming and mediocre well into January. … But then the coming-out party at Indiana happened, and Payne has never been the same. … His confidence skyrocketed to the point that you could almost see him thinking, Holy shit, I’m actually really good! From then on, he became a double-double machine for the Spartans.”