30. March 2011 · Comments Off on Coach Mattison’s Ring (with Audio) · Categories: 2011 · Tags: , , , ,


The media met with Michigan defensive coordinator Greg Mattison at midday today.

My favorite portion was near the end, when someone cool asked him about why he wears his ‘M’ championship ring, then he talked about the Big Ten championship game & finally Angelique asked him about Denard.



* Photos from yesterday’s practice.   And speaking of photos, one guy that Mattison likes (but admits he’s got a ways to go) is Cam Gordon.  From yesterday’s practice:


Rich Rodriguez Gator Bowl MVictors

Here’s the audio from the press conference:

If you need a chuckle—> Denard went before Rich Rod and was asked this epic question about leaving for the NFL next season.   Feel free to download for your mixtapes and remixes.

Full Rich Rod transcription:

Q. Rich, did you have any sense something like this was coming at all either in your team or what you saw from Mississippi State on film?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: No, I thought our guys practiced well, I thought they were focused, how we came out with the right intensity.

But from the second quarter on, we did not execute. It sounds simplistic, but it’s very disappointing because the guys have a great attitude. But they made plays and we didn’t. They tackled better than us, they caught better than us, they ran better than us, and that’s unfortunate. Our guys did play hard, we just did not play as well as we’re capable of playing and they played extremely well, and that was the ballgame.

Q. A lot of players make comparisons having a lot of time to prepare for Connecticut, kind of comparing that to having a lot of time to play in the Bowl game. How was the execution different in both games that kind of made it different?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: Well, if I had the golden answer to why sometimes 18, 19, 20?year old kids don’t always execute perfectly, it just happens sometimes. Sometimes you press a little bit, and I think that probably may have happened a little bit today. When we got behind, we probably pressed a little bit and didn’t maybe concentrate as much. I don’t know, but it happens sometimes. We obviously didn’t tackle well, and we couldn’t get our defense off the field. So you couldn’t really get a lot of positive momentum.

And when we had a chance to make some momentum offensively, particularly in the red zone when you can’t kick field goals, it hampers you a little bit. All in all, we didn’t play as well as we could play and they played extremely well. I don’t know if they had a penalty until later, the last five, six minutes of the game. They played well, we didn’t. End of story.

Q. I was going to ask you about the first possession of the second half. Did that kind of take away your chance to get back some momentum?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: Certainly it stemmed the little momentum that we had. I mean, you’ve got to come away with some points there and get within two scores. I know hindsight is always a little easier to look and say maybe you should have went for it on 4th and 5, but you’ve got to be able to make that field goal, too. So I knew that was kind of a downer. I felt that a little bit, and we tried to bounce back from that, but we didn’t.

Q. What did you think of Mississippi State’s defense, especially the linebackers playing you guys sideline to sideline?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: They played well. They tackled well. They’re very active.

But again, looking back, we moved the ball, we just didn’t finish drives, particularly after the first quarter. Again, I don’t know if it was just because we were pressing or whatever, what have you, but you give them some credit. But the looks that we were getting, I think our guys felt comfortable because they’ve seen them for a couple weeks.

Q. What’s your mood right now? Surprised? Disappointed? Frustrated?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: Yeah, probably all those. I mean, disappointed and frustrated, and I think you ask our players, they’ll say the same thing. But not discouraged because we’ve got a great group of kids. There are some guys that ?? I guess lack of improvement defensively is frustrating for a lot of us and for our fans, and we expected to see some, but I don’t know if you should expect too much when you see two freshmen.

It’s not excuses. I’ve said this many times to the folks that follow us at home. But when you play true freshmen, true freshmen, as many as we play on defense in key roles, it’s going to take a while before we can raise the level of play where you need it. They need an off?season. They need to get bigger and stronger and faster and understand the speed of the game better, and they will. They’re a good group of young guys, they just had to play before they were ready and they weren’t good enough.

Q. When do you expect to meet with your athletic director and what case will you make for keeping your job?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: Dave has been around, and he’s doing his evaluation. I don’t know when we’re going to meet.

Q. How frustrating has this last month been for you with everything swirling around?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: Frustrating? I don’t know if that’s the correct word. We just come to work. I mean, one thing I’m proud of the players and the staff is we have not cheated the University of Michigan a day of work, and I wouldn’t allow it and I wouldn’t let our staff allow it, wouldn’t let our players allow it and never have in my entire coaching career. And we’re paid to do a job, and we did it as hard and as well as we could with some obstacles, but everybody is going to have obstacles. And that’s the one thing that even though the season certainly didn’t shape out the way we wanted it to and there’s a lot of things that happened, we fought through it, and the team got closer. This team is closer today than it was a week ago and three weeks ago, and sometimes there’s some hard lessons to learn for all of us. But there was nobody cheating our school a day of work; that I can trust he ?? trust me on that.

Q. With the way the defense has been playing, do you feel pressured like you have to score on every possession? Does that let you call the plays the way you would like?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: You know, there is something to that point right there that I think you do feel sometimes that you probably ?? it changes a little bit on how you attack somewhat. And sometimes you don’t go as fast because you want to get your defense some rest so they can kind of recover. So certainly when you can’t stop them, it changes your mindset somewhat.

As a head coach, you’ve got to be understanding of all the phases and had we been a little bit better certainly at times defensively, there’s no question we would have won more games. I mean, I’m stating the obvious there. But we will get better. Do we have to look at some things and evaluate some things? Sure, that’s my job, evaluate everything. I know we’re going to get better because those young guys will be a year older, but I also know we’re going to be better because I’ll evaluate everything and get it right.

Q. Do you get any sense because of the way this game unfolded that ?? any sense at all that this will affect Brandon’s decision about you? Did you think it was about this game and that this could impact it negatively?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: You’re asking the wrong person.

Q. Do you think you’ll be back next year?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: You’re asking the wrong person. I do.

Q. Do you think your team was distracted by all the hoopla surrounding your job status?

COACH RODRIGUEZ: Really we didn’t talk about it much, really. I know that guys ?? it was the elephant in the room every time our guys were meeting. But I would tell you if it did. The practices were sharp, the kids paid attention, the coaches did their job. I mean, they recruited their tail off ?? the hardest thing with all the speculation is recruiting, you know, players that you’re recruiting and develop relationships want to know if you’re going to be there. And our coaches have done a fantastic job of selling the school and selling the program and getting commits in the midst of all this stuff. So that told me that our guys, our coaches are doing a good job, our players are staying focused.

You know, Denard is one of our best recruiters. He’ll sit there and a guy will come and visit campus and Denard will say, "Let me have him, I’ll get him committed." So that tells me our guys are focused on the day, on what they need to do to develop our program and they have been since day one. I would be disappointed if it was ever anything other than that.


A couple postgame photos of note.  I know, you don’t give a crap:

 002 - 77
Barwis with a few words & a hug for Taylor Lewan after the game

001 - hockey team

denard leaving


  • Bully XX and More Pregame Photos
  • Fast Track Today – Pregame Photos
  • Staying Perfectly Perfect – 1902 Rose Bowl (This Week..audio)

  • rr podium 

    Coach Rodriguez let the media into Schembechler Hall this morning for a 20 minute Q&A and to watch practice.  Check out some photos here and here’s the audio of the press conference:

    • No surprises with injury report.  Je’Ron Stokes is practicing.  Denard is fine.
    • “They kick like champions in here,” as in inside the Hall.   Still a competition.
    • Not sure if anyone will be ineligible due to grades until exams are done.
    • Talked about Miss State a bit.  “Probably did the best job of anybody all years against Cam Newton and Auburn.”
    • As soon as practice is over, many of the coaches are hitting the road recruiting.
    • Running back situation is open – sounds like everyone (Smith, Shaw, Fitz, Hopkins) is healthy.
    • Flying out the 26th on a charter or the guys will fly in from their homes.  The wanted to fly down Christmas day but the Redskins have the hotel booked up.
    • On early enrollees:  expecting between 2 and 4.
    • Devin Gardner won’t play in the bowl game.  He is practicing, his back is “better”.  RR said they will (“probably”) start the paperwork process after the bowl game for the medical redshirt.  He is eligible, playing time wise, for Michigan to apply.

    For recap of the player and Rich Rod press conferences, check out Tim’s rundown on mgoblog.

    It’s Michigan State and there was clearly a media buzz in the air.   About twice as many video cameras were on hand.

    The press conferences go like this:  At just after noon, Rich Rod sits down for about 20 minutes in the back of the Junge Center and answers questions off camera.  Then he moves over to the front for a cameras-on presser, usually a little shorter (because everyone’s already asked him 20 minutes of questions!).  Then there’s a delay, then media relations brings in players to speak & usually 4-6 guys hit podium one after another.

    A few shots.

    Here’s Rich Rod seated at the pre-presser at his seat in "the squared circle":

    rich rodriguez

    Obi Ezeh was very relaxed and put the defense’s troubles in perspective:

    obi ezeh michigan

    Likewise with Kovacs, who had a huge game last year against State:

    jordan kovacs - michigan

    Captain Steve Schilling scored big points with his "Offense" shirt.  It reads "SCORE" on the back.  Make we can get Underground to print up some "Defense" and "Don’t SCORE" shirts for Obi and crew:

    steve schilling - michigan

     offense - michigan shirt 

    Denard eyed the Pizza House pizzas stacked up in the back of the room and nothing was going to stop him from getting there:

    denard robinson michigan see the pizza

    Update.  Speaking of Denard, check out this shot from BigTen.org.  Gotta love Old 98 & "I-69" playing til the whistle.

    13. September 2010 · Comments Off on Denard Robinson (audio from Sept-13 press conference) · Categories: Archive 2009 · Tags: , , , , ,


    The man of the hour and here’s the audio:

    The thing about Denard is that he’s highly likeable.   He’s clearly humble, there’s a bit of an ‘aw shucks’ thing going on and that huge smile just tops it off.  I think that extends outside the Michigan fan base too.  As you do, I know quite a few State fans who really couldn’t stand Tate especially after the "I don’t get nervous" comment.  I saw it differently of course, but I guess I understand.

    There were several questions about his workload running the ball, both at Rich Rod and Denard.  One interesting fact.  He was of course a quarterback in high school but most schools recruited him as a receiver or cornerback but did you know Denard only rushed for 462 yards his senior year at Deerfield Beach (while throwing for 1809)?  So he’s just seven yards away (read: 1 carry) from beating his rushing totals from his entire high school senior year.

    P.S.  They handled out an updated copy of the Michigan record book at the press conference today, haha, that’s never a bad thing.

    09. August 2010 · Comments Off on Rich Rodriguez Full Presser (08-09 audio) · Categories: Archive 2009 · Tags: , , , , , , , ,

    RR: "Have any of you ever kissed a girl?" 

    You know you’re getting old when driving over, the thought enters your mind that this "late" night press conference will be cutting into your precious ‘Antiques Roadshow’ time.   Yikes.

    Full audio from this evening below. Follow MVictors on Twitter for live updates during press conferences this season.


    Key takeaways/notes:

    • RR called out "a handful of guys" that aren’t in shape.  Wouldn’t name names. 
    • He didn’t name anyone beyond the "guys upfront" for being in exceptional shape.
    • Coach Rodriguez wouldn’t comment on the WVU allegations, deferred to his previous statements.
    • First practice in pads is Friday morning "full contact"; two-a-days start Sunday.
    • All the quarterbacks took the first snap together, haha.  "All three guys are competing."  Said Devin is in "great shape".
    • On the Woolfolk comments and Tate.  "I’m glad our seniors are taking some ownership and leadership in this team." …  "Tate knows he’s a lot of work to do to prove himself, not only on the field but off the field."
    • On whether Tate is doing the right things to prove himself. "I don’t watch summer practices."  Weeee.
    • All the injured players in the from the spring are back 100% except Will Heiniger. 
    • Michael Shaw and some other players are still in summer school, into next week.
    • On the type of O lineman they want, "We like big guys that can move." 
    • Just had one bad snap today [where we’ve had problems in the past], "you can tell that’s coming from an experience guy."
    • On the WVU allegations: <cricket, cricket, cricket>
    • The seniors came up with the concept of having two permanent captains, with game captains during the season.  They players voted on it.  RR will announce to the team tonight.  Media will find out tomorrow.  They’ll two more captains for each game "if they’re worthy" and two "permanent" captains at the end of the season "if they’re worthy."   Love it!  Woolfolk?
    • 105 guys on the roster.
    • RichRod didn’t give a speech or comment on the allegations/pressures/coaching situation to the players.   That’s his responsibility; players need to focus on school and football.
    • He won’t know which freshman can contribute until after the first real scrimmage (a couple weeks from now).
    • Scholarships for walk-ons?  Yes, coming up.  It’s a sacred thing to RichRod as this was a big day for him while at WVU when Don Nehlen gave him the news.  You know the story.
    • –> Best question <–   Did he get a look at the punters today?  Yes.  "Will Hagerup will be what we thought.  He’s got a very powerful leg, he’s a good athlete.  If he progresses like we think he should be the guy against UConn."
    • True freshman will have a chance to compete at safety, cornerback (at least 2 deep).
    • Kelvin Grady is in really good shape.  Tells RR he’s "a fulltime football player."
    • Talked about Facebook/Twitter.  Prefers they don’t do it but understands.  Dave Ablauf spoke to them about it.  "Before you hit that send button, it’s there and it’s there for life."  Won’t ban it.  U-M has someone monitoring the players for RichRod. 
    • Any time spent prepping for Seattle?  No, just coaching. 
    • Was RichRod aware that Tate wasn’t showing up as much for practice.  RR didn’t really answer beyond saying he’s glad the seniors took that ownership.  "Let’s not make too much [of this]."
    • On Brock Mealer: "I’m as proud of him as any player I’ve coached."

    Post press conference Dave Ablauf of U-M Media Relations confirmed that practice is closed to the media (indefinitely) audio clip.  






    rrandrothstein That’s Mike Rothstein’s (slightly tighter) ‘do at the bottom blocking the podium

    Took 9 photos – this one was the most flattering

    Here’s the complete audio from Rich Rodriguez following the Purdue game.  I’ll add some notes and more in a bit:

    And it got a little chippy about midway through the presser.  Apparently when Rodriguez and Purdue coach Danny Hope met to shake hands, the Boiler coach brought LG Zach Reckman along with him to meet RR.  Why?  Reckman was suspended by the Big Ten the week after the Jonas Mouton suspension and Hope blames Rodriguez for the whole thing.   Hope wanted to put it in his face, officially dropping a match on the snake oil feud which had seemingly died.

    Reckman missed the Notre Dame the following week.

    Here’s Rodriguez explaining the encounter after the game, not happy and I can’t blame him.  Needless exhibition of childlike behavior on Hope’s part after their great win:

    For the record, I thought Rodriguez pushed the Mouton-Big Ten thing waaay to far, but that doesn’t excuse Hope’s postgame stunt.

    Other shots:

    Minor giving a local reporter the stink eye during the post-game, flashing a dizzying array of tats:


    Forcier, signing after the game, knee iced: