When he was hired, they asked Rodriguez what how he’d prepare for Ohio State and for being part of the rivalry.  I don’t have the exact quote, but he effectively said that each game counts as one, and until that changes he’ll approach each game the same.  Well, Saturday’s game definitely counts for two, maybe more.

It’s a tough time to have all the chips on the table as nothing seems to be working right now.  Another second half collapse on the gridiron, and the f’in Spartans sweeping our beloved icers.

Then toss in Bruce Springsteen, who’s composed many a tune on the plight of the downtrodden, mistakenly saluted Ohio at his concert Friday at the Palace:

Bruce has played here at least once every year since 2002. Imagine, then, Bruce coming onstage and greeting the crowd with a salute to Ohio! And then sticking Ohio in to the lyrics of "Wrecking Ball" — of course, a Michigan audience tends not to object too much to lines such as, "tonight Ohio is going down in flames." Finally, Bruce put Ohio into the rap for "Working on a Dream." This last actually managed to get a few boos, and prompted Stevie to inform Bruce that they were, in fact, in Michigan.

Ugh.

Bullets:

-> I actually think Pryor at the Buckeyes present a decent match-up for this team but still give the Blue little chance Saturday.  I know they’ll play hard.

-> I got a kick out of this, AnnArbor.com reporting on Bill Martin speaking after the Wisconsin game:

“I was just reading last night in Sports Illustrated the article about (Paul) Johnson at Georgia Tech and what happened down there when he first came,” Martin said. “Now he’s having a wonderful year. He’s 9-1, but talked about how their quarterbacks left, the receivers left, all the skill players left that program. He’s turned it around in two years. I expect you’ll see that same situation.”

Martin grew angry when a reporter reminded him that Johnson is in his second season as Georgia Tech coach. The Yellow Jackets are 10-1 this year. In Johnson’s first season at Tech, he went 9-4 and played in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.
“I know it is,” Martin said. “I can count, too. So what’s your point?”
Why hasn’t it come faster?
“It hasn’t, has it?” Martin said. “Next question.”

-> As far as Rodriguez, I’ll restate that barring the NCAA coming back with a major violation, they won’t fire Rich this season and I don’t think they should.  I’m not worried about what Notre Dame does with Weis or with Brian Kelly or whatever.  They won’t look at Harbaugh, who burned his M bridge at least for a while, and who’s apparently headed for the NFL anyway like his brother.

-> Hoping many alums come out to support the team Saturday as has been the new tradition the past few years.   This week (and next) should be interesting with the former players vocalizing their positions on Rodriguez, especially if it’s ugly Saturday.

-> Time permitting, I may feature some Ohio State-Michigan memorabilia this week on eBay Watch.  Thanks to John Kryk of Natural Enemies fame for pointing this out, an auction of a program and ticket stub to the 1927 Michigan Stadium dedication game against the Buckeyes:

1927 ohio state michigan program ticket

They’re asking a hefty $699.00 for this piece of history.  In these hard times, I think that’s a stretch but we’ll see.

7 Comments

  1. What is your thought process in stating that Harbaugh is headed for the NFL? I would have to think that if he was offered the Michigan job, he would take it in a heartbeat.

    I understand needing to give Rodriguez another year; however, absent a win over OSU this Saturday, I can’t support it, even if canning him after two years is completely irrational. He needs to EARN a third year and a 3-13 mark (with over half of those losses as blowouts) in one of the weakest conferences in the country, plus a team that has regressed every week, he hasn’t done it.

    Plus, let’s face it – the handrwriting is probably already on the wall. Most coaches succeed (or show signficant signs of success) by their second year. Tressel, Meyer, Stoops, Saban, Johnson, Kelly, Carroll – all of them have shown signficant progress in their second year.

    As for the NCAA violations, what if it is a minor violation? He still broke the rules, and more importantly, he looked into the camera and said he didn’t. That makes him a dishonest cheat. We all know what the response will be – “I didn’t realize that was a rule” ala Kelvin Sampson. But that’s not acceptable at Michigan, especially when you are finishing last in the Big 10.

    Sometimes marriages just need to be annuled. Annul this one and move on. Irrational, yes. But the best solution at this point.

  2. Once again, Michigan is playing in it’s bowl game this Saturday.

    Greg, I remember that quote. When RR said the tUoOS game was just like any other, I cringed. However, I was willing to cut RR some slack as I know he came from outside the program.

    John Cooper also had the same attitude towards the Michigan game and looked how that turned out.

    By way of comparison, Bo did something in EVERY practice for the tUoOS game.

    By way of comparison, when Sweater Vest was introduced as coach of tUoOS he said something akin to he was going to make everyone proud in 300 days when they played that school up North.

    I’m just sayin.

    I don’t know if YSU can be considered inside or outside the program for tUoOS, like many Michigan faithful wanted a Michigan Man, but nevertheless, Tressell “got it” from day 1. I’m not so sure we can say the same thing about RR anymore.

    Martin’s quotes are laughable at best. Draws a comparison to a situation where there was a major culture shift and fails to realize that situation hasn’t gone through similar turmoil that RR has brought to Michigan. Martin may be a expert at finances but he’s clueless and a shitty human being otherwise — good riddance.

  3. Every day I become less and less of a Rich Rod fan, but he is not going to get fired after this season. It’s a tough pill to swallow, but we all have to deal with it. And do you really want another Bill Martin coaching search? I know I don’t. And I don’t want another search that will be tainted by Lloyd Carr’s influence (No, I don’t think he sabotaged Les Miles’ hiring by cutting phone lines or booking Billy a boat trip, but I’m sure he let Martin know what he thought of Miles). As long as Bill Martin is here, Lloyd will have his ear. I mean, do you really want Mike DeBord as your next head coach? I’d rather take my chances with Rich Rod next season. Maybe he’ll surprise us (and yes, I have my doubts). As for this weekend’s season finale, all we can hope for is a horribly windy day where the stream of air is right down the middle of the field, making it impossible to throw; that way the defense only has to cover the sidelines.

  4. I was at the Palace Friday night for the Bruce show. The first Ohio slip was sort of funny (I actually immediately thought of the Michigan/OSU rivalry). The second slip made me cringe, and the third one was like a kick in the family jewels. The slip-ups were quickly forgotten by the end of the night, though, because I can honestly say it was the best Springsteen show of the 23 I’ve ever seen (ok, maybe second to my very first show). The stars were aligned for it: Friday night show, excellent enthusiasm from the (almost) packed house, Bruce and the band were on fire, perfect seats up close right next to the stage, and the belief that I was probably witnessing the last E Street Band show I’ll ever see (Clarence is almost 68, after all). It made me forget all about the hard times that have befallen the Michigan football program, Ohio slip-ups and all.

  5. This portion of today’s presser drives me up the wall:

    On when we’ll beat Ohio State: “We’ll win more of these games and other games when we have a better team than the team we’re playing.”

    Good to know we’ve all but admitted we’re going to lose, and that we’re just going to keep passing off losses and making excuses because Michigan doesn’t “have the better team.” I’m not holding any delusions of an upset on Saturday, but it would be nice for our coach to get up there and defensively claim he “gets it” while at the same time all but saying he doesn’t think his team is good enough to win.

    I’ve never seen a fanbase make so many blanket excuses for mediocre coaching and awful football than I’ve seen out of our fans in the past few months. Are we trying to justify to ourselves that our program made the right choice, and that it’s OK that we’ve made fundamental and (likely permanent) changes to the fabric and tradition of Michigan football? If NCAA investigators had been in Ann Arbor 3 years ago, would we be passing it off as the “Freep’s jihad” and trying to get Lloyd Carr off the hook? I feel like I’m taking crazy pills here.

  6. Did anyone catch Andy Mignery’s reaction to Tate Forcier’s promise to do whatever it takes to beat Ohio State, “even if it means watching film for 10 hours this week?” Andy seemed taken aback, suggesting Tate should have been watching tape (voluntarily of course) at a minimum of 10 hours each week from the beginning of the season. In the past Andy has also “suggested” that there are hints that Tate isn’t all that serious about studying game film. Methinks Mr. BMOC Forcier needs an attitude adjustment and not assume it’s his right to be the Michigan QB.