Alternatively titled “Moron Football”
Well, today is a bit of a deviation from the usual politics and policy talk that is routine here. Instead, I am going to focus on the University of Michigan football team. To put it bluntly, this entire organization seems to be run by complete morons – specifically Athletic Director Dave Brandon and Head Coach Brady Hoke. Now, I don’t have the “hot takez” like you will see on the innumerable message boards related to this matter…I am just a lifelong fan of Michigan.
While many fans didn’t think things could get any worse than what we saw under the direction of Head Coach Rich Rodriguez, they are being proven wrong this season. While Rodriguez’s worst team was littered with career backups and worse, this year’s squad under Hoke has numerous players who were consensus top prospects coming out of High School. The worst team Rodriguez ever fielded was his first one (3-7) in contrast to Hoke’s first year being his best (11-2); now in his fourth year, the record and performance of the team have plummeted. Hoke is coaching “his” players, guys that he and his assistant coaches recruited specifically for his offensive and defensive systems.
Essentially we are left with two scenarios to consider – either this group of guys can’t coach or every single recruiting service overvalued the abilities. I am more inclined to believe the former rather than the latter.
There are numerous instances of incompetence lately: the entire Shane Morris fiasco, continually putting 10 (instead of 11) men on the field for punts, trying for a 56 yard field goal with non-accurate kicker while playing the team that has blocked the most kicks in college football. And the list goes on.
Hoke is not the only one under scrutiny here though. As mentioned previously, Athletic Director Dave Brandon joins his coaching hire as a near certain moron, with a case to be made for additional sheer incompetence. How bad do you have to be to have a large number of the student body hold a rally in the hopes of getting you fired? Keith Olbermann featured Brandon on his segment of worst people in sports recently (see below).
If you want to read even more about the case for firing Brandon, head on over to MGoBlog.
Michigan Football used to be fun. We fans expected the team to compete in (if not win) every game they played. It was a retreat from the work week. A chance to sit back and enjoy excellence for a couple of hours on Saturday (and since many of us are Lions fans too, it was the only football excellence we would see on weekends). That doesn’t exist anymore. It is just not fun. The Michigan brand, behind the leadership of Dave Brandon and Brady Hoke has been dealt irrefutable harm.
I graduated from Western Michigan University and while I really enjoyed going to their football games when I was there, I lost touch with them. When I attended Western, their football team was among the best in the MAC…but because they are a MAC school and I lived in Iowa and Maryland after graduating, it was close to impossible to follow them. That is beginning to change though. While I can sometimes view a choppy feed via ESPN3, I can listen to the home team announcers on my phone every weekend. And I have remembered that WMU football is FUN! I wish I had the option to watch WMU in “crystal clear HD” like I do for Michigan. The one game I was able to see on my TV (rather than computer) was against Purdue and that loss was just as fun as either of Michigan’s two wins. Last year they went 1-11 while having the youngest coach in NCAA Division I Football. That coach, P.J. Fleck, then went out and recruited the best class in MAC history…not just WMU history, but the best the conference has ever seen. This year they are 2-3 but you see a passion there that seemingly does not exist at Michigan right now. It is hard to explain but there is the feeling that WMU is finally on the way up while Michigan is spiraling downward at an ever-increasing speed.