A notable reactions to recent posts on this site of note.
What Is Maize? First, on a quick post about the new All in for Michigan towels, in the photo of Rodriguez holding the terrible towel I wrote this:
While the range on the shade of navy blue on U-M gear is fairly tight, you do get quite a wide spectrum of maize. This photo of Rodriguez is a great example. The towel is closer to the gold, kind of older school, his shirt looks like a highlighter and the hat is somewhere in between. Can we get a standard and stick with it?
I realize such a standard was probably a stretch, given the 100s? of companies that manufacture U-M stuff. Anyway, reader Zach added a pretty interesting comment with this link. Turns out author Liene Karels actually looked into this topic for Michigan Today, digging back through time seeking some clarity on the standard. An excerpt, describing the goals of a committee assembled in 1912:
The charge was to "determine the exact shades of maize and azure blue which would be suitable for the official colors of the University and embody them in some lasting form."
Lombard’s committee searched out early diploma ribbons, dance cards from the 1890s and programs from various events, assembling an array of rich blues and saturated but clean yellows. They selected a group of professors, students, alumni and administrators to vote their preferences of the collected color samples. By this process they arrived at a recommendation to the Senate, and subsequently to the Regents of the University, that their proposed colors be adopted as Michigan’s official colors.
Maybe we need to get these guys back together?
Messner Memories: After my recent post and interview with Mark Messner, a former player (who prefers to be identified as such) chimed in via email and shared a few memories of a young, tenacious Messner as a freshman:
What I remember about Mess is that his engine was at 100% and non-stop. Our tackles and tight ends and backs had their hands full with him as we ran our 60 or so plays during practice. Tempers would some times flair on offense due to his intensity but there was no question he made the players on offense better. I knew he was going to have a great career at Michigan by this intensity, even as a freshman, he showed on the demonstration team. He just would never let up. He was a very good man and teammate.
Kicker Non-Clarity: I shared some very light observations on the kicking competition after a recent practice. During media day (after the heavyweights chimed in with their questions) I did get one through to Rodriguez, something along the lines of ‘Who’s the kicker?’. Scott Bell of the Free Press ran Coach Rod’s response in this piece. In sum, there ain’t no clarity but here’s a taste:
"That competition is like quarterback," Rodriguez said. "We may not know until game time."
To help create pressure situations during practice, the coaches made a rule that for every kick made, the running load decreases. A successful performance in practice not only brings them closer to playing time on the field, it also earns them points from teammates who don’t want to run.
"We try to make them even more popular, and they’ve performed pretty well — they really have," Rodriguez said.
Bryan Wright, the last kicker to come to Michigan on scholarship before Gibbons, isn’t factoring into the placekicking competition. He is still a top candidate for kickoff duties, said Rodriguez.