A year ago I wrote that I thought that the sky may be falling after the UConn game…oh how wrong I was. I can honestly say now that the sky is falling. This program is at the point of no return it seems and it still hasn’t hit rock bottom…yet. Before the season started, I had heard that the coaches had some concerns about this upcoming season, but I can’t imagine they thought it would end up like this. I figured they would be worried they would be 9-3 with losses to their 3 major rivals, not 2-3 before October. I look at the schedule and there are no winnable games/guaranteed wins left…not if they keep playing like they have been. Could you imagine a 2-10 Michigan Football team? The thought makes me want to puke. I was thinking 5-7 worst case scenario after Notre Dame, but now I don’t even know how they will get 3 more wins.
I wanted Brady Hoke to succeed. But after Saturday it’s time for him to go. He’s a nice guy, loves the program, etc., but he’s incompetent, unaware and in over his head. The final straw for me was when Shane Morris was limping horribly and they left him in the game. Morris was clearly not going to bring them back, so cut the poor kid a break. He clearly was not ready to play, especially behind that offensive line, and benching Devin Gardner appears to have been a major mistake. Then he took a shot to the head from a defender and he was surely concussed. He staggered while walking towards the sideline and they left him in to throw one more pass before pulling him. Even if he wasn’t concussed, why wouldn’t you check to see what the hell was wrong with him? You have Devin Gardner on the sideline, what did this kid do to deserve this punishment? Morris was clearly injured in the third quarter and it only got worse as time went on.
To make matters worse, when Devin Gardner’s helmet came off, they put Morris BACK IN. Rather than let Russell Bellomy find his helmet, burn a timeout, take a direct snap to the runningback, send in Brian Cleary, let Willie Henry take the snap, LITERALLY ANYTHING ELSE, they sent an injured Morris in to take a snap. Why did Bellomy need HIS helmet anyways. Give him any helmet that fit. Who cares? He was just gonna hand the ball off to a running back. To top it all off? There were 25 seconds left on the play clock and the refs stopped the clock to ask if Michigan wanted a timeout, after looking at Shane Morris come back in, and what did Brady Hoke do? He appeared to say “let’s go” while making a circular motion with his finger. This type of endangerment of a player is unacceptable. Brady Hoke says he doesn’t want injuries to be announced to the public to protect kids, but why wasn’t he protecting Shane? He says he didn’t see him wobble, and if that’s the case, what was he watching? He doesn’t have a headset on, he doesn’t call plays, or coach offense, so what was he watching while they were on offense? What exactly was the glorified cheerleader doing? How did none of the other coaches see it? How did no one speak up? This to me is a complete lack of control of the program and the final straw. I love Michigan football to death and love seeing them win, but I won’t get on board with a team endangering a 19-year old kid just to win. I don’t think there was anything malicious on Hoke’s part or on the coaching staff’s part. I don’t think it was on purpose, truly I don’t. Hoke’s just THAT incompetent and that is completely and utterly unacceptable.
Watch the whole video…the wobble is at 2:36 (you can see higher quality vids here at MGoBlog). It’s truly appalling. The Minnesota defender should have been ejected and I applaud Ed Cunningham on his color commentary here, it was perfect. This just makes me sick. I respect Shane Morris’ toughness and desire to stay in…but the coaches have to pull him. What player is going to take himself out of the game? He’s a competitor. The coaches must act.
Theiren Cockran clearly should have been ejected for this hit. This is textbook targeting.
Here’s the link to Brady Hoke’s opening statement following the game. I tried to embed it but no such luck.
Brady is just in over his head. This is not an acceptable answer. The statement that was issued on Sunday evening made things worse, and the Q & A Hoke did with MGoBlue.com wasn’t any better.
So coaches can’t take out visibly injured players? And no mention of a possible head injury? Um…what? This is how you know it’s a sinking ship…you start pawning off blame on anyone you can possibly think of and start dodging responsibility. Shane was out of the game for an absolute maximum of 5 minutes real-time, that’s about 20 minutes short of the NHL concussion protocol when they send you to the quiet room. It takes you longer than 5 minutes to evaluate a potential concussion. How do I know that, you ask? My dad’s a neurologist.
You know it’s bad when Lloyd Carr leaves early.
The most frustrating part is all of the four and five-star recruits, and players in general, that don’t develop. They seemingly get worse. The assistants appear to be flat-out terrible, with the exception of Greg Mattison. They can recruit and sell the program, but what good is that when players get worse? Recruiting rankings don’t matter…I’ll be the first to tell you that, but there’s no way that a team stocked full of this much talent should be on the precipice of a 2-10 season. And there is also no way that recruiting rankings whiff on this many four and five-star rankings. Players have to be developed, I cannot reiterate this enough. I don’t doubt that the players work hard, but working hard doesn’t matter if you’re being taught to do the wrong things. They’re doing less with more talent than they’ve had in a while and that’s because the coaches just aren’t good coaches.
Does Fred Jackson teach the running backs to run with their heads down? Does Darrell Funk teach the offensive lineman to not get pushed back off the snap? Does the strength and conditioning coach do anything to get the offensive lineman stronger? Or how about prevent ACL tears? Is the defense taught how to properly tackle? I question what is being taught, because on Saturdays, it looks like nothing is being taught during the week. Honestly.
This is something like the first time in 27 years that Michigan has lost to Minnesota at home. You don’t lose at home…let alone to Utah and Minnesota in back-to-back weeks. It’s tough to watch. Sometimes I wonder why I keep going to games…then I remember that I still love this school and team and I’m going to keep going. It’s almost like an addiction or a sickness, I’m not sure which at this point.
Fans and Alumni aren’t the only ones that are frustrated…former football players seem to have had enough as well. Hoke says all the right things, but just can’t make it happen.
Back to the Shane Morris injury now…when the ABC World News on Sunday night transitions from talking about ISIS to talking about your coach’s handling of a potentially concussed player, you know it’s time for him to go. I truly didn’t want a third coach in 8 years, but there is seemingly no other option at this point.
Good Morning America picked up where they left off on Monday morning too.
It’s awful seeing Michigan continually in the news for all of these incompetent and terrible things. It’s like reliving the 3-9 football season from my freshman year of college all over again. Part of me wishes that they would just cancel the rest of the season. At least it would be less painful. The only silver lining is that the more problems that arise and the bigger the distraction and circus the program becomes, the more likely that Dave Brandon will be fired. When your stadium starts chanting “Fire Brady” and “Fire Brandon” you know it’s time to clean house. Never in my life have I ever heard of an athletic director’s job being called during a football game. But that’s what happens when you are offering two tickets to the game for the purchase of two Coke’s. You have fans paying thousands of dollars a year for tickets and then you slap them in the face by handing tickets out for free so you can stay over 100,000 in the announced attendance. Do me a favor and don’t piss in my pocket and then tell me it’s raining, all while taking money out of my bank account.
As a season ticket holder, this is infuriating and it should spell the end of Dave Brandon in my opinion. You can’t continually hike up ticket prices and treat your
fans customers like shit and expect them to keep coming back. My Papa, who has a scholarship endowed in his name, won’t give any more money to the athletic department while Dave Brandon is in charge. Why is that, you ask? Because the athletic department took away his free The Wolverine magazine subscription a few years ago. It seems petty I know, but his logic is sound. He called to ask why exactly his subscription was canceled and what they told him was he hadn’t given enough money to the school. This is a man that played football and golf here, won a Big Ten Championship in golf, helped get Crisler Arena built, was personal friends with Bo Schembechler and sat behind him at basketball games because Fritz Crisler owed him a favor and gave him great seats. This is a man that gave up those same tickets to basketball games when Jerry Hanlon would call and tell him that Schembechler needed some more for recruiting visits. But this man wasn’t doing enough for the athletic department now, despite endowing a golf scholarship, so they kick him to the curb? The bottom line is this athletic department doesn’t give a shit about any of the alumni, or any people that support Michigan, unless they are giving them massive amounts of money. Dave Brandon may have made the athletic department self-sustaining and that’s impressive, I’ll give him that, but at what expense is this worth it? The product on the field gets worse as the ticket prices go up. The pre-game flyovers aren’t going to be enough to distract the masses anymore. This is what happens when you have a CEO running your athletic department, you get a company instead of an athletic department. Always assuming that the old customers will be around no matter what and you have to find out how to bring in new ones, instead of just keeping the old ones happy. Brandon’s personal philosophy must be if it’s not broken, break it. The next AD must fix the disconnect between the alumni, the fans and the athletic department. Oh and you know, pick a good football coach.
If Dave Brandon does keep his job, I’m scared to think he might hire. I’ve heard that Cam Cameron is the name that is currently being passed around right now and I don’t want that. You’re Michigan. You have enough money that you go out and take another team’s head coach, not another team’s offensive coordinator.
So we can totally win next week right?
Yeah, you guessed it. But don’t worry, Brady Hoke still thinks this team can win a Championship. Either he’s completely delusional or he just likes lying to the media.
It’s always sweet when ESPN makes fun of your coach.
Articles That Are Worth Reading:
Sports Illustrated: It’s Time For A Change At Michigan
Detroit News: Writing On The Wall For Hoke
Bleacher Report: Michigan Loss Should Be Last Straw for Brady Hoke, Dave Brandon
Yahoo! Sports: Why Michigan Should Pursue Jim Harbaugh, Despite Some Clear Hurdles
Yahoo! Sports: Michigan Wolverines Football: From Sellouts To Handouts In Just 4 Years
Sports Illustrated: How can Michigan football return to its former glory?
Baltimore Sun: Despite UM’s apparent interest in John Harbaugh, coach not pursuing job, source says
Grantland: Would Jim Harbaugh Really Leave 49ers For Michigan? (Not with Brandon around).
The Michigan Daily: Brady Hoke Must Be Fired
MGoBlog: THIS IS NOT MICHIGAN
Yahoo! Sports: Brady Hoke passes buck on Shane Morris injury as Michigan continues freefall
Deadspin: Michigan’s Problem Isn’t Commercialism; Michigan’s Problem Is It Stinks
ESPN: Michigan job might be too big for Brady Hoke
Newsweek: Big Blew: How Michigan Football Got So Bad, So Quickly
Awful Announcing: MEDIA PRESSURE MOUNTING ON BRADY HOKE AFTER SHANE MORRIS INJURY DEBACLE
CBS Sports: Hoke is a joke, but nothing funny about Michigan playing with QB’s life
ESPN: Michigan Wolverines Apologize How Shane Morris Injury Was Handled
Detroit Free Press: Morris incident won’t hurt Hoke’s recruiting in state
If you want the most up-to-date info, I would suggest that you follow me on twitter…since I’m on it 24/7.
I was going to provide a massive update, but it’s really just not worth the time. I’ve continually added new articles that are worth reading. But suffice it to say this has turned into a major embarrassment. The Shane Morris incident has been discussed on Good Morning America, ABC World News, NBC Nightly News, PTI, Around The Horn and Outside The Lines. It has even caused a protest and a petition, so clearly this isn’t going away any time soon.
Anyways. Here is the statement from Dave Brandon and President Mark Schlissel’s statement is below.
Both were nice, but raised a lot of questions. Why weren’t these protocols already in place? What took so long for the statement to be issued? Why did Brandon throw Hoke under the bus? It’s almost as if they were trying to get the doctors to lie and then figured out they wouldn’t go for it, so they had nothing left to do. Schlissel didn’t endorse Brandon or Hoke, so you have to think that they are on a short leash. Nothing says more about an athletic director who leads his hand-picked head coach to the firing squad and then throws him in front of a bus 12 hours later. This is a mess and a total embarrassment. It’s essentially an all out revolt and the media is covering every second of.
[Photo via: @cjzero] [Photo via: @cjzero] [Photo via: @joshhenschke]