Disclaimer: This post is an editorial of the state of my blog, not all blogs. It is a random, slightly coherent stringing together of thoughts about sports, disappointment, blogging, time and effort.
Is this thing on? WOW...what a stretch of nothing to write about. I'm not one to blog just for the sake of blogging. This is just a very slow stretch of time between actual football being played and actual football being played. There is no question that the frequency of posts around here have come to a grinding halt. I can attribute this to two key factors:
• I have much less time to write with my sudden and most uncompensated new responsibilities that my work-life has now bestowed upon me. I'm not complaining. There's nothing wrong, especially these days...with being busy with real work. I am happy to be so, but not at the expense of my time being able to write for this site.
• It is the off-season. And with that comes less and less to write about that anyone actually cares enough to read. Breaking news and new recruits are obviously things worth mentioning. But it's too early to preview opponents and breakdown position battles. Couple that with my earlier point and you have a perfect recipe for less and less posts.
And it's not that I have a loyal readership of thousands per day. Quite the opposite. Maybe a couple dozen or so. But for me, that's great! I'm happy to have the readers I have and more than happy to continue with the modest success I've enjoyed so far.
But there's a broader theme to this editorial. And that is this: This is getting harder and harder to do. Not from a writing perspective. Coming up with stuff to write about and actually doing it are easy...all you need is time and an internet connection.
What I mean is, having the stomach to do so.
In case anyone hasn't noticed, being a Michigan fan...or Detroit sports fan (or both, like me), these past few year's have been miserable, save for the Red Wings in 08.
The Lions are perpetually the worst team in the NFL. 1 win this season will be a 100% improvement over last year. How nice is that? The Pistons are ripe for total collapse. Unless Dumars whips up some magic in the head office this off-season, Pistons basketball will be back to where they were 10 years ago.
The Tiger's, albeit doing well in the AL central, still are not convincing any fans that they have what it takes to make a run in October. Run support is not there, and their division is soft.
Most recently, our beloved Red Wings...the only team in town which you can guarantee would bring it when it matters...laid down completely in the last two games of the Stanley Cup final. Maybe they were all playing injured like everyone said they were...but that doesn't take away the fact that watching those last two games was heart-wrenching.
And most importantly...Michigan football, I hate to say it, is stuck in reverse gear right now. And try as he may, the best Rodriguez is going to be able to do this year is try and get us into neutral. 6 wins and 6 losses is where I see this season ending. Michigan will reluctantly turn down a courtesy bid to play in the Motor City bowl...because a 2nd loss to a MAC school in one season is just not good for any BCS conference team.
Two straight losses to Penn State and Michigan State and Notre Dame...and an unthinkable 6th loss in a row to tOSU is too much for this blogger to handle. My heart hurts just thinking about it. But that's the reality that we all need to start accepting for this season. It's going to suck.
Did Michigan get their man with Rodriguez? Should we have pitched harder for Les Miles? Did Rodriguez screw up Pryor's recruitment? Are we turning into Notre Dame? What the hell is going on here?
These are the questions that I think a lot of people are asking themselves, but are too afraid to ask because we all know what the answers are. And I think the truth hurts for a reason. Because we know that 2008 was awful, and that so far we have no reason to think that 2009 is going to be much better.
We still have two QBs with zero experience. And a walk-on that will literally drive season ticket sales down if he's on the field this season.
Call me a pessimist, but when Sparty, Irish and Nittany Lion fans are all giving you shit and tOSU fans have stopped giving you shit because they feel sorry for you...how low has the program fallen? When will Michigan football actually mean something again?
I started this blog about two months before we lost to Appalachian State. Since then, we went from #3 in the country to unranked the next week. Bent over for Oregon. Had a big win against an 0-2 Notre Dame. Beat a decent Penn State again. Got past a mediocre Sparty squad. Got blown out by Wisconsin on the road. Forgot to show up against tOSU at home. Somehow beat Florida in a bowl game, Said goodbye to Lloyd, respectability and Michigan football as we knew it. Lost the recruit of the century and our best lineman to our biggest rival. Stole Rodriguez away from WVU. Said hello to a bunch of players who's names we'd seen on the roster but never on the field. Started a walk-on QB in the 08 opener. Watched a miracle comeback against Wisconsin. Lost to Toledo (f-ing TOLEDO!). Lost to all our rivals and were humiliated by tOSU yet again. Didn't go to a bowl. And said goodbye to the only decent QB we had on the roster.
So yeah, this blog has been nothing but unicorns and rainbows!
I'm a little disappointed that things haven't exactly gone a little smoother with our beloved program. Part of me looks at everything we've gone through these past two years and wonders how it all played out like this. If Lloyd didn't leave, what would 08 have looked like?
Would we have lost 9 games? Probably not. But it's likely we would have lost to Penn State and tOSU. And if that was the case, would Lloyd still have been the coach after 08? Would he have been run out of town by the heretics for a 6th straight loss to the Buckeyes?
We still would've had to replace Henne, Hart and Long. We would've kept Manningham, Arrington, Boren and Mallet. Would those 4 guys (and the pro-style offense) been enough to make a run at a Big Ten title in 08? My guess is no. A new year's day bowl? Probably. The Big Ten is a little down, so maybe another Capital One bowl appearance.
It's likely that Rodriguez would have stayed in Morgantown if not for leaving for Michigan. Hard to say how good the Mountaineers would've been last year with him as coach. Probably pretty good.
Maybe I'm just getting stubborn about Michigan football. Maybe I need to embrace the future and stop thinking about Bo and Lloyd and how different things are.
I can't believe how much things changed on that Friday in November of 2006. Michigan was on top of the world. About to play in the game that would define this program for years to come. The biggest and most hyped Michigan-tOSU game in history.
And then, on the eve of this historic game, our hero died.
With him, died the spirit and essence of Michigan football.
Looking back now, it all seems so poetic. No one could have written that script. One of the titans of college football. The most important man in the history of Michigan football. An epic leader of men and builder of champions...gone a day before the biggest game Michigan had played in a decade.
Things have changed so much for this program since then. We've all moved on, of course. But things still don't quite feel the same. And maybe that's the point. Why should they? Maybe it's time for another book about Michigan football to be written. Maybe the future of this program will be twice as bright as it's past. Who knows? Sports are full of questions and doubt. Just as I still doubt that Michigan made the right choice by hiring Rodriguez. But I'm willing to give the man time. We owe it to ourselves to believe that greatness is possible.
And lets face it, a 3-9 season will fill even the most positive supporters mind with doubt. And I don't want to be blamed for doing that. Rodriguez may be the hero we need right now. We just don't know. One season is not enough time.
So while we meander out way through this long and arduous off-season, things can and will get a little slow around here. But it's not because I have any less interest in Michigan football, but simply because I have less to write about, and much less time to do it in. Things will loosen up by this summer as hype about the 09 season ramps up and we start focusing in on whats going on.
Stay tuned for more from us in the coming weeks. And of course, thanks for reading. Go Blue!
|Date||Opponent||Time - TV||Result|
|9/3||Hawaii||12:00 - ESPN||63-3|
|9/10||UCF||12:00 - ABC||51-14|
|9/17||Colorado||3:30 - BTN||45-28|
|9/24||PENN ST.||3:30 - ABC||49-10|
|10/1||#8 WISCONSIN||3:30 - ABC||14-7|
|10/8||@ RUTGERS||7:00 - ESPN2||78-0|
|10/22||ILLINOIS (HC)||3:30 - BTN||41-8|
|10/29||@ MICHIGAN ST.||12:00 - ESPN||32-23|
|11/5||MARYLAND||3:30 - ESPN
|11/12||@ IOWA||8:00 - ABC
|11/19||INDIANA||3:30 - ESPN
|11/26||@ #2 OHIO ST.||12:00 - ABC
|12/30||#11 Florida St||8:00 - ESPN||-|
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