Nightly Roundup: February 14, 2019

Nightly Roundup: February 14, 2019


February 14, 2019
Jon Runyan, Jr. (image via MGoBlue)

Michigan is #5 in ESPN’s football power index (LINK).

Michigan’s offensive tackle situation is much clearer right now than it was a year ago (LINK).

According to Umbig11 on The Fort, former Wolverines Alex Malzone (QB) and Tyrone Wheatley, Jr. (TE) are in the transfer portal and planning to leave Miami-OH and Stony Brook, respectively (LINK).

124 comments

  1. Avatar
    Comments: 1138
    Joined: 1/19/2016
    je93
    Feb 14, 2019 at 10:11 PM

    #5… let the hype begin

  2. Avatar
    Comments: 933
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    WindyCityBlue
    Feb 15, 2019 at 12:37 PM

    Looking at our proven, on-field talent, this does not look like a top 5 team. More like 10-15. Too many areas where we are good, but not great. Too many areas of limited athleticism, and too many uncertainties.

    • Lanknows
      Comments: 4288
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Lanknows
      Feb 15, 2019 at 12:39 PM

      Name 10 teams with better proven on-field talent.

      • Avatar
        Comments: 933
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        WindyCityBlue
        Feb 15, 2019 at 12:53 PM

        I win the bet with myself that someone was going to spout that question right off the bat. I don’t know which specific teams will be better than us (though you can certainly put OSU in there), but I’ve watched enough seasons of Michigan football to know 9-3ish talent, and that’s what we’ve got going into next year. We have plenty of good players, but no difference makers. We have no one who can elevate us over where we were last year or in 2016 or 2015.

        • Lanknows
          Comments: 4288
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Lanknows
          Feb 15, 2019 at 1:02 PM

          I win the bet with myself that you wouldn’t.

          Could you? In a meaningful way, if you actually tried. I wonder.

          When you view the world through a lense of Alabama-Clemson-OSU it’s understandable to see Michigan in a negative light. But the next tiers down, it gets a lot harder trying to find 10 teams who are clearly better. But that’s the whole point.

          Haters(zzz) gonna Hate.

          • Avatar
            Comments: 933
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            WindyCityBlue
            Feb 15, 2019 at 7:04 PM

            So if they went 9-3/10-2 this year, would you be saying that they sucked, and that it was a horrible year? Then why would you accuse someone who predicted that of being “negative” and a “hater”? Why would you accuse someone of being “negative” and a “hater” who looked at this year’s roster, saw that the overall talent level was going to be similar to last year, and predicted a similar result to last year? Unless you had a personal axe to grind?

        • Thunder
          Comments: 2812
          Joined: 7/13/2015
          Feb 15, 2019 at 2:09 PM

          This is a minor quibble, then. You predict 9-3, which could be 10-3 with a bowl win. Michigan was 10-3 in 2018 and finished at #7. The #5 team in 2018 was 11-3. A bounce or two in the right direction could put Michigan at #5.

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 15, 2019 at 3:19 PM

            “We have no one who can elevate us over where we were last year or in 2016 or 2015”

            M ended up ranked in the top 10 in S&P in 2015, 2016, and 2018. WCB doesn’t see how they can do better than but misses that they don’t NEED to be better to finish in the top 5. It just takes maintaining and getting “A bounce or two in the right direction”.

            Urban Meyer leaving and OSU hiring 3 different DL coaches is a good start. So is all the returning talent on O.

            • Avatar
              Comments: 933
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              WindyCityBlue
              Feb 15, 2019 at 7:13 PM

              Oh yes, the old “this year things are bound to start breaking our way” meme. Where have I heard that before? Could it be every year of the Harbaugh era?

              I’ll say it again…this is 9-3 talent. If you don’t recognize 9-3 talent when you see it, you haven’t been paying attention. Maybe we’ll get a little lucky and go 10-2, maybe we’ll be unlucky and go 8-4. But there’s nothing on this roster that’s going to push us to the next level, and have us going 11-1/12-0. Nothing that’s going to have us winning the games we’ve been losing every year under Harbaugh. Nothing that looks significantly different than last year.

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 15, 2019 at 7:39 PM

                If it’s impossible to win more than 9 or 10 games – why are you still paying attention?

                Sounds like maybe you’ve caught a case of nineandthreeitis.

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 933
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  WindyCityBlue
                  Feb 16, 2019 at 6:08 AM

                  If there’s a disease, it’s Harbaugh and the program that have it, chronically. I’ll keep watching, because it’s what I do.

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 15, 2019 at 7:40 PM

                9-3 talent can finish #5…or #25…or #45.

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 16, 2019 at 12:01 PM

                I have no problem with the prediction. I probably agree with it at the moment, give or take how the roster gets refined over the next few months.

                I just asked a question – to see if there was any substance to your assertion. Since you like to challenge people for specific examples (usually of things they didn’t say) I thought it was a reasonable request.

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 16, 2019 at 1:06 PM

                The difference between Top 15 and Top 5 is beating OSU. Everyone here is well aware of that objective.

                On the one hand – it’s good to focus discussion of the program around that objective. On the other hand – a one game season that Michigan keeps losing isn’t much fun.

                In terms of personnel – yeah they need more speed at safety and LB to combat OSU. It seems like they’re recruiting in that direction to me.

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 1138
                  Joined: 1/19/2016
                  je93
                  Feb 16, 2019 at 1:21 PM

                  Agree, but while I don’t care for insults directed at the program, coaches, or players, I would not want to be a part of a fanbase that is rational about losing to ohio

                  “it’s good to focus discussion of the program around that objective. On the other hand – a one game season that Michigan keeps losing isn’t much fun”

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 16, 2019 at 3:51 PM

                  Well you’re in luck.

              • UM_1973
                Comments: 78
                Joined: 10/14/2015
                UM_1973
                Feb 16, 2019 at 2:38 PM

                I agree we probably go 9-3. But this is still sports and lots of things could happen. There is still some possibilities that Michigan caught lightning in a bottle and win it all. That is why we watch sports. You just don’t know what is going to happen. Afterall, Vegas is giving us the 6th or 7th best odds to win the title.

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 16, 2019 at 4:05 PM

                  Right. We don’t have to be Alabama or Clemson to hope to beat Ohio State. We don’t need more talent to have a good chance.

                  All these teams ranked 5-15 are all “9-3” caliber. There’s nothing wrong with being in that group. As you say, it only takes a few breaks to outperform your power rank.

                  We’d all like to take a step up to the next tier. We’re all fed up with losing to OSU. They look like the same thing right now.

                  And we’ve ALMOST beat OSU several times. With Meyer gone and a home game in 2019, there’s plenty of reason to hope for this to be the year. Even if you know it’ll take some breaks to get there.

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 933
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  WindyCityBlue
                  Feb 17, 2019 at 9:22 AM

                  If Harbaugh had a history here of his teams overachieving, you might have a point. But he has shown that he’s far more likely to lose games, especially against quality teams that he could or should have won than the other way around. At some point, “luck” or “breaks” or “bounces” cease to be a credible explanation, and inadequate coaching Andy player development become more likely.

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 17, 2019 at 1:27 PM

                  At some point, I agree.

  3. Lanknows
    Comments: 4288
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Lanknows
    Feb 15, 2019 at 12:57 PM

    Is the OT situation really that much better this year?

    Last year they had one returning starter and a question mark.

    This year they have one returning starter and a question mark.

    Runyan returns but you lost a 5th year starter and arguably the highest ceiling LT prospect in Hudson. In their place steps…well, the same guys, albeit a year older.

    It could be better but we don’t know.

    • Thunder
      Comments: 2812
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Feb 15, 2019 at 2:12 PM

      Yeah, I think the OT position is better. One reason is that Runyan is an established starter, whereas we had zero established starters going into last year (you had a half of a year of Bushell-Beatty at RT). Meanwhile, Stueber played a little bit (similar to Runyan in 2017), and the next guy up appears to be a redshirt freshman (Mayfield) instead of a true freshman.

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 4288
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Feb 15, 2019 at 3:10 PM

        Uncertainty can go either way. There’s reason to hope. But if we are looking at things objectively there was hope last February too.

        Returning Starter:
        I grant you that Runyan comes in more proven in 2019 than JBB did in 2018 (15 career starts to 8). But there’s still doubt about how good Runyan is at LT and a plausible theory out there that Michigan played with one hand tied behind it’s back (2TE) because of his limitations in pass pro. This is an upgrade but mostly it’s just a bit more certainty.

        Other tackle:
        You make a good point that Steuber ’19 is similar to Runyan ’18. Runyan had a year on him and a bit more experience though.

        Younger contenders.
        In ’18 you had 2 young guys with plausible upside: Hudson, Steuber. Buzz was very strong with Hudson. Some were projecting Hudson to start, talking about his upside – just needs seasoning – and the coach’s fed the hype. In the end Steuber was the one who got the nod but his upside is lower. Ulizio was around for veteran depth too.

        In ’19 you have 2 young guy with plausible upside: Mayfield, and Hayes. Some are projecting Mayfield to start but the hype isn’t as big as with Hudson. But there’s been zero buzz about Hayes and there are no veterans to throw in if things go sideways.

        2019 vs 2018 by spot on the depth chart:
        1. Runyan > JBB
        2. Steuber = Runyan
        3. Mayfield < Hudson
        4. Hayes < Steuber
        5. a freshman < Ulizio
        6. 2 other freshman = 2 other freshman

        We can quibble over the details but I would reiterate my position that the situation is closer to "basically the same" than "much clearer". Let's not pretend like Runyan is rock solid – the best case scenario has someone else stepping up and Runyan moving to RT.

      • Avatar
        Comments: 933
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        WindyCityBlue
        Feb 15, 2019 at 7:18 PM

        Runyan will be adequate, maybe marginally better than last year, but from year 4 to 5, expecting a huge improvement isn’t realistic. In no remotely likely scenario does Runyan become a dominant blocker between now and August.

        • Thunder
          Comments: 2812
          Joined: 7/13/2015
          Feb 16, 2019 at 6:14 AM

          Yeah, well, I believe left turns lanes are important to keep traffic running smoothly on busy thoroughfares.

          See, I can create arguments out of thin air, too.

          I never said Runyan would make a huge improvement or become a dominant blocker.

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 16, 2019 at 11:54 AM

            Literally nobody has said that.

          • Avatar
            Comments: 933
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            WindyCityBlue
            Feb 17, 2019 at 9:04 AM

            Where did I claim that you said that? Absolutely nowhere. The point, which you missed totally, is that saying Runyan is an “established starter” means nothing in terms of how good he is in an absolute sense. It only means that he was clearly the best guy WE had at his position last year, which on this roster, isn’t saying much.

            • Lanknows
              Comments: 4288
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Lanknows
              Feb 17, 2019 at 2:03 PM

              The point you’re missing is that it DOES say something. The 2018 team was reasonably good – #10 to S&P, tied OSU for first in east division, had a top 10 defense and a top 25 offense.

              Part of it is that is guys like Gil and Runyan stepped up and played reasonable well.

              Football isn’t just about tallying up 5-star recruits, it’s also about how bad your weakest link is. That’s where guys like Gil and Runyan are so valuable.

              And they should continue to get better. Even if they’re 3 stars. They’ve clearly disproven those HS evaluations anyway – time to let go of that even if they won’t ever be NFL players.

            • Thunder
              Comments: 2812
              Joined: 7/13/2015
              Feb 17, 2019 at 3:30 PM

              I guess being named FIRST TEAM ALL-BIG TEN by the coaches and SECOND TEAM ALL-BIG TEN by the media means nothing. I mean, you’re not going to get much more confirmation than that for an offensive linemen. He has established himself as a starter in the conference, and other coaches/media members have recognized his talent.

              You, the ever-grumpy message board poster, still want to argue when things like “established starter” are thrown out there, though, as if there weren’t 24-26 other starting Big Ten tackles out there who would be very happy to be thought of as highly as Runyan. Michigan has a guy who’s top-4 out of 28 starting tackles in the Big Ten, and you still find a way to make that a negative.

              • Avatar
                Comments: 933
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                WindyCityBlue
                Feb 18, 2019 at 8:09 AM

                Jake Long was first team all Big Ten too. Is Runyan even remotely that good? Or is he just “reasonably good”, as others have attested?

                Discuss.

                • Thunder
                  Comments: 2812
                  Joined: 7/13/2015
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 2:53 PM

                  Nobody has said Runyan is as good as Jake Long. If your argument is that Runyan isn’t any good because he’s not as good as Jake Long, then…yowzers. The only person who has attempted to juxtapose Runyan and the #1 pick in the draft is you.

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 3:42 PM

                  That is exactly the argument. Not just at LT but across the board.

                  It’s the “everybody sucks except Alabama” mentality.

                  WCB would have fired Dabo Swinney after his first 4 years. 1-3 in bowl games, failure to go undefeated in conference every year, etc.

  4. Avatar
    Comments: 1138
    Joined: 1/19/2016
    je93
    Feb 15, 2019 at 8:25 PM

    Our DL & LBs are reason for concern in two games: ohio & ND — that’s all it takes to make for a bad season. In all honesty, losing another game is enough to dismiss the entire season as a waste

    Can the coaching staff prevent that? Who would have thought in Feb2015 that this was the biggest question?

    • Avatar
      Comments: 933
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      WindyCityBlue
      Feb 16, 2019 at 6:07 AM

      Especially when we landed a great LB class in 2017. Those guys should be locked and loaded as stars right now, but only one is a quality player, one left and one is a bust. It’s that kind of failure in player development that keeps us away from elite status.

      • Thunder
        Comments: 2812
        Joined: 7/13/2015
        Feb 16, 2019 at 6:11 AM

        LOL at calling a rising redshirt sophomore linebacker a bust. Joshua Uche and Mike McCray II say hello.

        • Avatar
          Comments: 933
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          WindyCityBlue
          Feb 17, 2019 at 9:08 AM

          Jordan Anthony was a 5 star recruit, one of the top LBs in that class. He’s done nothing notable so far, and isn’t predicted to in this, his junior year.

          Yeah, that’s a bust.

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 17, 2019 at 1:28 PM

            No

          • Thunder
            Comments: 2812
            Joined: 7/13/2015
            Feb 17, 2019 at 3:22 PM

            Anthony was a 247 Composite 4-star, the #8 outside linebacker, and #106 in the class. Sure, you can say he was a 5-star, but I could just as easily say he was the 124th-best recruit – which was his ranking on ESPN.

            Here are some stats for some other linebackers around him in the recruiting rankings in 2017:

            VanDarius Cowan (#4): 2 tackles
            Levi Jones (#6): 28 tackles, 3 TFL
            Markail Benton (#7): 14 tackles
            Jordan Anthony (#8): 3 tackles, 1 sack
            Jaden Hunter (#9): 0 tackles
            Nathan Proctor (#10): 3 tackles

            I guess most linebackers are busts…

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 4288
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Feb 16, 2019 at 11:53 AM

        A top 100 recruit sitting behind an all-american is anything but a failure — it’s the best case scenario. It’s exactly what happens at the elite programs you constantly point to.

        If you want to get fired up about a “quality player” like Josh Ross making only honorable mention all conference as a sophomore, I guess you can do that.

        Or maybe you want to complain that Devin Gil – a flyer recruit from Harbaugh’s transition class, grabbed in part to help with Devin Bush recruitment – is only an above average Big Ten starter – rather than on the bench.

        The way I see it — things are pretty good when you replace an AA with a proven senior, a returning all conference junior, and a top 100 sophomore-eligible player finally recovered from a major injury. Not to mention the promising recruits behind them.

        • Avatar
          Comments: 933
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          WindyCityBlue
          Feb 17, 2019 at 9:16 AM

          A top 100 recruit should be playing and showing real talent by his second year, even if he’s not starting. Anthony has done nothing, and no one is particularly excited about him this year.

          Ross is fine, and will probably be good this year. Gil is someone we’re settling for. You don’t win championships with guys like him starting. Again, “proven” only means that we had nobody better, not that he is playing at a high level in an absolute sense.

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 17, 2019 at 1:42 PM

            Did you want Michigan to bench Bush so that Anthony could “show something”? Or did you need Anthony to make some highlight plays in meaningless situations? Or are you just still upset that a solid starter like Devin Gil didn’t get enough stars for your liking?

  5. Lanknows
    Comments: 4288
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Lanknows
    Feb 17, 2019 at 4:34 PM

    WCB writes: “If Harbaugh had a history here of his teams overachieving, you might have a point. But he has shown that he’s far more likely to lose games he… should have won than the other way around.”

    For your consideration: Harbaugh’s track record relative to expectations; as reflected in preseason AP rank, final AP rank, and final S&P rank:

    2015: predicted NR (outside top 25), finished 12, final S&P 10
    2016: predicted 8, finished 10, final S&P 6
    2017: predicted 13, finished NR, final S&P 13
    2018: predicted 9, finished 14, final S&P 10

    By S&P rank Harbaugh has met or exceeded expectations every year* By AP rank he had 1 year of significant overachieving (2015), 1 of significant underachieving (2017), and 2 of meeting expectations.

    *The expectations themselves are inflated by Harbaugh being Harbaugh but we’ll ignore that part and just take as given that Michigan is ‘supposed’ to be a top 15 team, even though the previous 2 coaches couldn’t achieve that.

    • UM_1973
      Comments: 78
      Joined: 10/14/2015
      UM_1973
      Feb 18, 2019 at 1:43 AM

      If we are to list down the issues we have with the Michigan football team under Harbaugh, I think it boils down to just one thing: Failure to beat Ohio. Even if we finish 12-1 but we fail to beat Ohio State, I still think there will be a group of fans who still think that Harbaugh has underachieved.

      Having said that, I do believe that Harbaugh has underachieved in the past 5 years. He has always managed to beat up on less talented teams using his brand of football, boosting the S&P numbers. How many times have he managed to beat a team when Michigan is the underdog? Zero. Michigan has always finished in the Top 10 as far as recruiting ranking is concerned since Harbaugh arrived. How many times have Michigan finished the season in the top 10? Once. That is where I see the underachievement.

      • Thunder
        Comments: 2812
        Joined: 7/13/2015
        Feb 18, 2019 at 5:26 AM

        You always want to try to get better, but my thing with the Harbaugh situation is: Who are you going to get that’s better? We’ve seen the errors you can make when trying to go in a different direction, and it was painful.

        • Avatar
          Comments: 933
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          WindyCityBlue
          Feb 18, 2019 at 8:26 AM

          So you’re saying we should be satisfied with losing to Ohio State every year, and never winning a conference championship? And that we can’t possibly find a coach who can do better than that? Okey-doke.

          So when Harbaugh is 0-6, 0-7, 0-8 against OSU, will you still be saying, “oh, well, there’s nobody out there who could possibly do better”?

          • Thunder
            Comments: 2812
            Joined: 7/13/2015
            Feb 18, 2019 at 2:54 PM

            I’m saying when you’re going 10-3 on a regular basis, you should think long and hard about changing coaches.

            I would rather go 10-3 regularly than wander through another 7 years of embarrassment.

            • Avatar
              Comments: 933
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              WindyCityBlue
              Feb 21, 2019 at 11:55 AM

              So your answer to all three questions is apparently yes.

        • UM_1973
          Comments: 78
          Joined: 10/14/2015
          UM_1973
          Feb 18, 2019 at 11:43 AM

          Thunder, I think you should start a new thread discussing who will be better coach at Michigan than Harbaugh.

          In my opinion, I can only think of the following coaches who will clearly be a better upgrade from Harbaugh at Michigan:
          1) Nick Saban
          2) Dabo Swiney
          3) Pete Carroll
          4) Bill Belichick
          5) Urban Meyer
          6) Lincoln Riley

          I don’t think any of them are coming to Michigan from their respective coaching jobs. The rest comes with significant risks.

          1) Kirby Smart – Georgia is a way deeper recruiting pool
          2) James Franklin – Do we really want a coach who has a losing record against us
          3) Jimbo Fisher – My way or the highway -> don’t think it will work at Michigan
          4) Chris Petersen/Ryan Day/Brian Kelly/Dantonio/Chip Kelly/Scott Frost/David Cutcliff/Klye Whittingham/Pat Fitzgerald/David Shaw/Jeremy Pruitt. Do we really want any of these coaches? I don’t see them as upgrades from Harbaugh.

          As long as Harbaugh is still able to lure the likes of Daxton Hill and Zach Carbonnet, I think our chance of success remains better with Harbaugh. That does not mean we cannot say Harbaugh has not underachieved the past 5 years.

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 18, 2019 at 2:10 PM

            They are 2 very different conversations.

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 18, 2019 at 2:11 PM

            I wouldn’t take any of those coaches over Harbaugh to be honest. Not when you factor in off-field considerations.

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 4288
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Feb 18, 2019 at 2:07 PM

        Harbaugh is the reason M is recruiting in the top 10 every year. Harbaugh is the reason M is the favorite in 80 or 90% of the games they play.

        The criticisms of Harbaugh tend to take it a given that this is where Michigan belongs as a default. Even though the last 2 coaches didn’t do that. Carr had to deal with this culture too.

    • Avatar
      Comments: 933
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      WindyCityBlue
      Feb 18, 2019 at 8:20 AM

      You love to throw s&p in there, don’t you..but only when it supports your argument. Otherwise, it gets conveniently ignored.

      Harbaugh’s teams have collapsed completely at the end of the last 3 seasons. Agree or disagree? Is that overachieving or underachieving? Harbaugh has yet to beat a high quality opponent on the road in 4 years. Is that overachieving or underachieving? Harbaugh is 2-7 against his chief rivals and 1-3 in bowl games, with zero division or conference championships. Is that overachieving or underachieving?

      Harbaugh has met or exceeded expectations against the weak to average teams on his schedule. But that’s all. Feel free to dispute that.

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 4288
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Feb 18, 2019 at 2:28 PM

        I think they underachieved at the end of 2018. “Collapse”? I think that’s appropriate. Getting whooped like that against OSU and not showing up for the bowl game… Embarrassing close to the season.

        2017 – It was a rebuild year that got jacked by Speight’s injury. I think they overachieved in their performance against OSU. I think expectations for Peters were stupid. How they played against Wisconsin and S.Carolina was on par with rational expectations.

        2016 – disappointing finish but they deserved to win in Columbus and I’m not going to call it a collapse when Butt and Peppers get injured at the Bowl game.

        It’s always harder to beat good teams than bad teams. The good teams tend to be at the end of the season.

        Michigan needs to beat OSU (duh).

        • Avatar
          Comments: 1138
          Joined: 1/19/2016
          je93
          Feb 18, 2019 at 2:49 PM

          I can’t imagine describing a loss to ohio “overachieving”

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 18, 2019 at 3:37 PM

            If you bet $ on Michigan you won.

            • Avatar
              Comments: 1138
              Joined: 1/19/2016
              je93
              Feb 18, 2019 at 3:43 PM

              I’m sure that’s exactly what the players & coaches wanted

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 18, 2019 at 3:52 PM

                Like I said – it depends on your point of reference.

                Michigan played well enough to win that game. I didn’t expect that and I bet if you’re being honest — neither did you.

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 1138
                  Joined: 1/19/2016
                  je93
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 4:00 PM

                  I’ve been competing my entire life, and have been around sports as long as I can remember. NO competitor looks at a loss as “overachieving,” especially not against a rival

                  The W/L is all that matters, not “almost,” “close,” or even “S&P”

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 4:09 PM

                  We’re talking about overacheiving or underacheiving.

                  Which is relative to expectations.

                  In other words – no shit.

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 4288
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Feb 18, 2019 at 2:34 PM

        I think getting the program back to being a top 10-15 team every year is an excellent accomplishment. I think it’s unreasonable to expect a top 5 program to just pop up overnight. I think the progress has been exceptional.

        ‘overacheive’ or ‘underacheive’ depends on the point of reference. Compared to an average coach (like say Brady Hoke or Rich Rodriguez) I think he has overacheived. Compared to expectations coming in given Harbaugh’s reputation, I think he has met expectations in getting the program back to where it was at under Bo (who also tended to lose bowl games).

        Can Harbaugh get us up to that next tier? I don’t know, it’s very difficult to get there, but I think he’s the best man for the job. The last 4 seasons have reinforced that for me, not diminished it.

        • Avatar
          Comments: 1138
          Joined: 1/19/2016
          je93
          Feb 18, 2019 at 3:38 PM

          10-15 ranking is excellent for Hoke or RR. JH is the guy who wouldn’t even hug his brother after losing the Superbowl. I’m sure he’s more disgusted about 0-4 than most fans

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 18, 2019 at 3:47 PM

            So the expectations are different because it’s Harbaugh?

            Does Harbaugh not deserve credit for raising them?

            • Avatar
              Comments: 1138
              Joined: 1/19/2016
              je93
              Feb 18, 2019 at 3:54 PM

              YES, and I’m sure Harbaugh agrees that the expectation is higher for him than RR/Hoke. Not sure why that’s hard to accept. This is the guys who beat SC with Stanford, and resurrected the 49er franchise

              HIS expectations are without a doubt higher than mine and nearly all fans

            • Lanknows
              Comments: 4288
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Lanknows
              Feb 18, 2019 at 4:07 PM

              It’s not hard for me to accept because I see it all the time.

              Harbaugh is “underacheiving” because of where people set the bar for Harbaugh. But Harbaugh is not given credit for raising the bar.

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 4288
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Feb 18, 2019 at 2:37 PM

        Not sure when I’m ignoring S&P – but yes, I like it and believe it reflects team ability and performance better than wins and losses.

        I hold getting blown out by PSU in 2017 and OSU in 2018 as the worst performances by far under Harbaugh. Narrow losses in coin-flip games vs top tier competition I view very differently.

        • Avatar
          Comments: 1138
          Joined: 1/19/2016
          je93
          Feb 18, 2019 at 3:40 PM

          I KNEW IT!

          “(S&P) I like it and believe it reflects team ability and performance better than wins and losses”

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 18, 2019 at 3:49 PM

            I don’t think I’ve ever indicated otherwise.

            Ultimately what matters is wins and losses, but if you’re trying to gauge the direction of the program (i.e., predict the future) it’s a better indicator.

            • Avatar
              Comments: 1138
              Joined: 1/19/2016
              je93
              Feb 18, 2019 at 3:56 PM

              What? How does S&P in 2016 impact 2017? It’s a totally different roster? How does S&P in 2017 predict 2018? We got a new QB…

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 18, 2019 at 4:03 PM

                100% turnover every year?

                Man, I guess WCB is right to be so pessimistic about the future.

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 1138
                  Joined: 1/19/2016
                  je93
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 4:16 PM

                  Neither statement is true. We don’t turnover 100% per year, but there’s enough change to roll my eyes at the assumption that S&P is going to predict the future

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 4:44 PM

                  I didn’t say it “predicts the future” I said it was a better indicator of the direction of the program than wins and losses.

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 4:45 PM

                  Everybody is aware that what matters is the wins and losses.Everyone is aware that Harbaugh needs to beat OSU.

                  But the past is the past and if we’re trying to figure if a coach should be retained or not I would be looking at the overall direction of the program.

                  It seems some here are willing to look at context in some situations (we’re only beating the bad teams, only winning at home, etc.) and not look at context in others (how competitive we are beyond W/L).

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 1138
                  Joined: 1/19/2016
                  je93
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 6:05 PM

                  Lanknows FEB 18, 2019 AT 3:49 PM
                  Ultimately what matters is wins and losses, but if you’re trying to gauge the direction of the program (i.e., predict the future) it’s a better indicator.

                  Also Lanknows:
                  Lanknows FEB 18, 2019 AT 4:44 PM
                  I didn’t say it “predicts the future” I said it was a better indicator of the direction of the program than wins and losses.

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 18, 2019 at 4:04 PM

                Harbaugh’s had a top 15 team every year by S&P. That tells me the program is in a good place, dramatically improved from the previous decade.

                Ohio States been better than that. They were also better than that the previous decade.

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 4288
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Feb 18, 2019 at 2:42 PM

        I’d like to hear you lay out exactly what your expectations for the program are overall. In terms of W-L record and ranking. What metrics need to be reached to “overacheive”.

        Are those expectations coach-independent or does Harbaugh raise them because he is Harbaugh?

        • Avatar
          Comments: 1138
          Joined: 1/19/2016
          je93
          Feb 18, 2019 at 3:52 PM

          Overachieve? Win a national title

          Realistic? 10-11 regular season wins a year; win a conference title every 3-4 years; a playoff win…

          Underachieve? 9* wins; no Division title; no trip to Indianapolis; no playoff birth; NO WINS v ohio!

          *9Ws in 2015 was great

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 18, 2019 at 3:58 PM

            So 10 wins is the expectation unless…sometimes 9 is great!

            In other words your expectations are not consistent. They depend on… something.

            I suspect this is true for WCB too.

            Which is why the underachieving claim can’t be validated.

            It’s just a feeling to have. An emotion.

            • Avatar
              Comments: 1138
              Joined: 1/19/2016
              je93
              Feb 18, 2019 at 4:02 PM

              No, 2015 is the exception because it followed a sh!tshow that included the Morris-concussion, out AD being fired, and losing to Rutgers, Maryland & Minnesota (the latter two at home)

              Not emotions Lank, but context

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 18, 2019 at 4:10 PM

                Ah but not against OSU in 2017…

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 1138
                  Joined: 1/19/2016
                  je93
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 4:19 PM

                  The fact that you have to reply twice (and often three times) is enough to show not even you are buying your argument

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 18, 2019 at 4:47 PM

                  pot/kettle

          • Lanknows
            Comments: 4288
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            Lanknows
            Feb 18, 2019 at 4:15 PM

            Harbaugh should be credited for creating a context where you think it’s valid to feel upset about a top 15 season.

  6. Avatar
    Comments: 1138
    Joined: 1/19/2016
    je93
    Feb 18, 2019 at 4:20 PM

    The fact that you have to reply twice (and often three times) is enough to show not even you are buying your argument

    • Lanknows
      Comments: 4288
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Lanknows
      Feb 18, 2019 at 4:47 PM

      lol. What a great double post.

      • Avatar
        Comments: 1138
        Joined: 1/19/2016
        je93
        Feb 18, 2019 at 6:07 PM

        Haha, that’s an all-time great double post! 😎

    • Lanknows
      Comments: 4288
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Lanknows
      Feb 18, 2019 at 4:54 PM

      Just to summarize today’s exchange:

      You admit that your expectations are elevated because of Harbaugh’s success.

      You lecture that wins and losses are all the matter, but 9 wins is a great season sometimes because context is important.

      You tell me my perspective isn’t valid because of multi-posts (twice), after writing at least a dozen.

      • Avatar
        Comments: 1138
        Joined: 1/19/2016
        je93
        Feb 18, 2019 at 6:16 PM

        I admit my expectations WERE higher when Harbaugh arrived – based on success at previous stops. I thought we’d win a playoff game by 2019, and might win a NC by 2020. Since then, I’ve scaled back – based on performance here

        I didn’t lecture; stop being sensitive. 9 wins was good enough in 2015 because of what Harbaugh inherited. He fixed that right away and deserves credit & patience, which I believe I have given. 9 wins isn’t good enough anymore, and that’s not just me: I’m willing to bet John, Jack & Jim Harbaugh, along with every player & coach in the program agrees

        My double post was an epically-timed glitch or error. You on the other hand tend to doubt and reply to your own posts, especially if there’s a debate involving Ty Isaac, the OL, Wilton Speight, and now Harbaugh

        It’s OK, I think it’s fun

        • Lanknows
          Comments: 4288
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Lanknows
          Feb 18, 2019 at 7:26 PM

          I think it’s valid to adjust expectations to context. I don’t think it’s valid to adjust them upward based on performance and then call the guy who got there an underachiever.

          • Avatar
            Comments: 1138
            Joined: 1/19/2016
            je93
            Feb 19, 2019 at 9:15 AM

            You’ve already demonstrated a reluctance to scroll up, instead creating your own argument, but let me try again:

            Per je93 FEB 18, 2019 AT 6:16 PM, I adjusted my expectations LOWER since Harbaugh arrived

            I’ve also made clear that “not meeting expectations” is no different than what the coaches & players themselves say – their goal & expectation last year was repeatedly stated as a National Title

            • Lanknows
              Comments: 4288
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Lanknows
              Feb 19, 2019 at 11:10 AM

              They also said that in 2015 and every year.

              You said that 9 wins were great 2015 but now you expect a national title. So how is that lowering expectations?

              • Avatar
                Comments: 1138
                Joined: 1/19/2016
                je93
                Feb 19, 2019 at 9:38 PM

                Find me ONE UM football player interview from 2015 that said a National Title was their expectation… Just one Lank. Back up your BS sir!

  7. Thunder
    Comments: 2812
    Joined: 7/13/2015
    Feb 18, 2019 at 9:17 PM

    Wow, you guys are approaching the most-commented-on post in blog history. There are 87 (88 as soon as I hit “Post Comment”) comments on here, nearing the record of 107 set in the aftermath of the loss to Florida State. (Well, the all-time QB rankings are higher, but I’ve reposted that a few times, so I’m not sure that it counts.)

    • Lanknows
      Comments: 4288
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Lanknows
      Feb 19, 2019 at 11:09 AM

      That’s only because JE needs a lot of separate posts to go through his complex emotions.

    • Avatar
      Comments: 1138
      Joined: 1/19/2016
      je93
      Feb 21, 2019 at 8:45 PM

      116 and counting!

  8. UM_1973
    Comments: 78
    Joined: 10/14/2015
    UM_1973
    Feb 19, 2019 at 1:22 PM

    I think Harbaugh deserves the raised expectation. Not only because of what he has achieved in his previous stops but also because he is the third highest paid coach in the country. In addition, he has hired alot of highly paid assistants. However, while I am not calling for a change (yet) in our head coach, I have to say that his first five years have been disappointing. 0-5 vs Ohio. This is not what I expect from a coach who is the third highest paid in the country! For me, the metrics that says Harbaugh would have overachieved is when he goes 7-2 over our rivals over the next 3 years.

    • Thunder
      Comments: 2812
      Joined: 7/13/2015
      Feb 19, 2019 at 1:27 PM

      Harbaugh has only been at Michigan for four seasons (2015-2018). He’s 0-4 against OSU.

    • Lanknows
      Comments: 4288
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Lanknows
      Feb 19, 2019 at 2:10 PM

      Talking about firing Harbaugh, or approaching that place, is just as ridiculous as it was a couple years back with Beilein. You don’t fire one the best coaches in the country, particularly when he’s such an excellent fit with the program. You don’t fire ANY coach that has you performing at a top 10 level unless there’s off-field problems.

      https://www.teamrankings.com/ncf/trends/win_trends/?range=yearly_since_2015

      Michigan is a top 10 program because of what Harbaugh’s done. Obviously (given recent history) – that’s not a given. I don’t think that should be taken for granted.

      I agree that Harbaugh raises expectations but it’s not just about pay and previous stops. — but also what he’s done at Michigan. Exceeding expectations like he did in 2015. Being a Columbus-spot away from a playoff in 2016. The come-down in 2017 was predictable. The end of 2018 was a debacle but doesn’t override the progress of the last 4 years.

      ———————-

      I think people are allowed to feel however they want. But if anyone is expecting to win a national title in 4 years, I think that’s a pretty irrational read of the college football landscape.

      Let’s talk about disappointment against top tier competition:

      Being 0-4 against OSU – yes. Everyone agrees here.
      3-1 vs PSU, no.
      2-1 vs Florida, no.
      1-1 vs Wisc, no.
      0-1 vs ND, no.
      2-2 vs MSU, maybe. The punt block was a fluke but if you want to say the games have been too close for comfort I won’t argue. Has to be acknowledged that MSU was in strong position (thanks in part to rampant steroid use and dubious recruiting but still)
      Beyond OSU these are all well within reasonable expectations, IMO.

      For anyone making the rival argument…I don’t buy that’s all that matters to you. If Michigan beats OSU, MSU, and ND next year but loses to Maryland, Army, and Iowa I think you will still bitch and talk about how disappointed you are. Frankly I’m not even sure there’s a consensus on who Michigan’s ‘rivals’ are right now. I’d rather beat PSU than ND. I’d rather lose to ND than Rutgers. Etc.

      • UM_1973
        Comments: 78
        Joined: 10/14/2015
        UM_1973
        Feb 20, 2019 at 12:14 PM

        If you ask me at the beginning of the season whether I can accept Michigan finishing 10-2, beating Ohio, MSU and ND but losing to Army and Iowa. I will probably take that in a heartbeat. This 10-2 Michigan team is probably not going to the playoff but most likely going to the Big Ten title game. I would rather have this outcome rather than an 11-1 Michigan team which loses to Ohio and not making the conference title game. I guess Lanknows is right that beating the rivals is only one part of the puzzle. Winning the Big Ten is the other part.

        • Avatar
          Comments: 1138
          Joined: 1/19/2016
          je93
          Feb 20, 2019 at 2:59 PM

          Yeah sure, but right now we’re doing neither

          This doesn’t mean “fire Harbaugh,” but on a MICHIGAN football website, discussing expectations, accomplishments & disappointments is certainly reasonable

          • Avatar
            Comments: 933
            Joined: 8/11/2015
            WindyCityBlue
            Feb 20, 2019 at 3:51 PM

            And, strangely enough, some teams are managing to do both.

        • Lanknows
          Comments: 4288
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Lanknows
          Feb 20, 2019 at 6:33 PM

          Right. Beating rivals means beating OSU and beating OSU is usually winning the Big Ten and winning the Big Ten is, more often than not, making the playoffs.

          I think what the rivals-bitching boils down to is: “I demand they make the playoff”. But that is more overtly unreasonable and people like to think they are reasonable. So you get “yeah sure they’re winning 10 games every year but let’s talk about the rivals”.

          In reality, beat OSU and MSU but lose to Indiana and Maryland still doesn’t win the title or silence complainers. Maybe you sneak into the Big Ten championship somehow and lose to Iowa/Wisconsin/Northwestern. Is that going to stop the crying? No.

          But it will change the criteria used to rationalize it. It’ll be “close season strong” or “dont choke against weaker opponents” or whatever it will be…

          So — I don’t buy it. when I hear “what matters is beating our rivals” think the truth is “I’m taking everything for granted that’s enjoyable about the program and demand more”.

          • Avatar
            Comments: 1138
            Joined: 1/19/2016
            je93
            Feb 20, 2019 at 7:32 PM

            What an awful fanbase. Wanting to beat rivals & win a conference championship…

            I wonder what Jansen & Woodson would think of us…

            Harbaugh must wish fans’expectations were more like they were in his own playing days:
            https://youtu.be/wH-nLzozCC8

            • Lanknows
              Comments: 4288
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Lanknows
              Feb 21, 2019 at 10:52 AM

              If your argument is that fans are on the same page as players, I would refer you to the player’s open hostility to the fanbase’s negativity, booing, etc. “muggles” was thrown around a few years ago and the rise of twitter has given players more of platform to be heard. Sean McKeon shushed the student section after a TD. He claimed it was an accident and maybe it was. etc.

              Point is – you’re not a player.

          • UM_1973
            Comments: 78
            Joined: 10/14/2015
            UM_1973
            Feb 21, 2019 at 12:06 AM

            I was in Michigan during the Gary Moeller era. His record is 9-3, 10-2, 9-0-3, 8-4, 8-4, never once finishing the season with a Top 4 ranking. Jim Harbaugh’s record: 10-3, 10-3, 8-5, 10-3. I enjoyed being a Michigan fan much more under the Gary Moeller era even though Michigan’s record looks similar at a glance. The reason being: Gary Moeller is 3-1-1 against Ohio and we won a few Big Ten titles. We are the King of the Big Ten (Midwest) and I would not use the word underachievement for Moeller’s Wolverine. Until Harbaugh does the same, I think I would still attach the word “underachieve” next to Harbaugh’s name. And no I am not calling for Harbaugh’s dismissal. Just a fan’s frustration.

            • Avatar
              Comments: 1138
              Joined: 1/19/2016
              je93
              Feb 21, 2019 at 8:19 AM

              That fair. Jack Harbaugh and the headcoach himself would agree with you

              • Lanknows
                Comments: 4288
                Joined: 8/11/2015
                Lanknows
                Feb 21, 2019 at 11:00 AM

                Please quote exactly where Jack Harbaugh says he is frustrated or disappointed in his son’s performance at Michigan.

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 1138
                  Joined: 1/19/2016
                  je93
                  Feb 21, 2019 at 8:35 PM

                  He didn’t say either, nor did I imply he did

                  If you’ve ever heard him talk – even if only on the AED podcast, dude is a winner… a competitor. Winning is what it’s about. I respect the hell out of the Harbaughs because they are absolutely fierce & demanding competitors, without being a-holes about it

            • Thunder
              Comments: 2812
              Joined: 7/13/2015
              Feb 21, 2019 at 8:25 AM

              I think it’s a different game now. Bo Schembechler was revered even though he never won a national championship and didn’t have a great bowl record, and Moeller coached immediately after him. That was the expectation at Michigan (beat your rival, win the conference), and anything beyond that would have been gravy (but never happened).

              The College Football Playoff and the BCS changed that (and I would argue it changed for Michigan when Lloyd Carry won a national championship). Now people aren’t going to be happy unless you beat your rival, win the conference, AND make it to the playoffs.

              And let me add on to that: Truthfully, the vast majority of Michigan fans are not going to be satisfied unless Michigan wins a national championship. You’ll hear the same complaints here and all over the place if Michigan goes 12-1 and then loses to ___________ in the CFP.

              • Avatar
                Comments: 1138
                Joined: 1/19/2016
                je93
                Feb 21, 2019 at 9:17 AM

                Sure, but it’ll be a lot less fans, and much less dramatic. And again, I’m sure once Harbaugh clears one hurdle, he’ll feel the same

                Just look at Brady & bellicheck: they look at each season as an opportunity to win “A” title, not just “the next” title

                • Lanknows
                  Comments: 4288
                  Joined: 8/11/2015
                  Lanknows
                  Feb 21, 2019 at 11:01 AM

                  You should really stop trying to equate players/coaches with fans. Their job is to win games. Our job is to cheer, be entertained, and consume.

                • Avatar
                  Comments: 1138
                  Joined: 1/19/2016
                  je93
                  Feb 21, 2019 at 8:39 PM

                  And you should really stop telling people how to be fans. Last year it led to you having to take time away, so I imagine it weighs on your well-being. I cheer & enjoy, grow frustrated & b!tch, but do so within the reasonable expectation of a sports fanATIC

                  Relax. All is well

            • Lanknows
              Comments: 4288
              Joined: 8/11/2015
              Lanknows
              Feb 21, 2019 at 10:57 AM

              That’s probably all true but ignores that OSU is a helluva lot better right now – a top 5 program nationally every year. Michigan is probably stronger than it was under Moeller but OSU is on the next level. Urban Meyer may be an a-hole but he’s the best college football coach on the planet and he had a running start on Harbaugh.

              After 2017 I would have called the matchup a draw (despite 0-3) given where the programs are at, but Meyer wiped the floor with Harbaugh in 2018. In some ways it’s too bad there won’t be another battle in 2019 but mostly I’m just thankful the witch is dead.

              • UM_1973
                Comments: 78
                Joined: 10/14/2015
                UM_1973
                Feb 21, 2019 at 11:26 AM

                It is true that OSU is on the next level. But look at Auburn Alabama rivalry. Bama has been unreal under Nick Saban and yet Auburn still managed a 4-8 record against Bama under Nick Saban. Not good but acceptable. That is why I said that first thing Harbaugh needs to do is to beat OSU. 0-4 can’t cut it.

                I agree with Thunder that the game has changed with BCS. That there will be fans who will be upset unless there is national championship at the end of the year. But I think the majority of Michigan fans would be satisfied if we beat Ohio, win the Big Ten and make the playoffs every now and then. Look at John Beilein and basketball. Zero National Championship and yet majority of the fan base is happy with him.

                • Thunder
                  Comments: 2812
                  Joined: 7/13/2015
                  Feb 21, 2019 at 11:36 AM

                  Basketball isn’t football, and Michigan isn’t a basketball school, no matter what people joke about on the internet. Football is king, so people are going to have stronger feelings about the football team’s failures to be elite.

  9. UM_1973
    Comments: 78
    Joined: 10/14/2015
    UM_1973
    Feb 21, 2019 at 12:22 PM

    I respectfully disagree with Thunder. I think the majority of Michigan fan base is not expecting a national championship on a regular basis. Let’s see what happens when Michigan wins their first Big Ten title for the decade.

    • Avatar
      Comments: 1138
      Joined: 1/19/2016
      je93
      Feb 21, 2019 at 8:43 PM

      I look forward to the day when fans’ biggest complaint is “sure we beat ohio & won the B1G, but we blew the national title game!”

      That sure will be nice

    • Lanknows
      Comments: 4288
      Joined: 8/11/2015
      Lanknows
      Feb 22, 2019 at 11:19 AM

      “on a regular basis”

  10. Lanknows
    Comments: 4288
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Lanknows
    Feb 22, 2019 at 11:54 AM

    IMO the culture of Michigan football is bordering on toxic. The players have an adversarial relationship with the fans due to their negativity and hostility. The direct lines of communication (e.g., twitter) have lowered the barriers at the same time that rules of decorum (e.g., not booing the players, not treating teenagers like pro athletes, not cheering injuries) have eroded.

    IMO that comes from unrealistic and unreasonable expectations. Those aren’t based on history unless you’re going back nearly 100 years. They aren’t acknowledging the college football landscape (e.g., Alabama and OSU have advantages Michigan doesn’t, Clemson took many years to ascend). It’s flat out petulance.

    Thunder is absolutely right – maybe next year it’s good but nobody should pretend like beating OSU is enough in the long-run. Fans aren’t going to be OK with replicating Moeller or Carr or even Bo’s relative place on the national stage. We already know this.

    It’s good that fans feel like they are part of the program. That’s the beautiful thing about college football. It’s bad when fans think they ARE the program – that their job is to motivate with carrots and sticks like a coach. Setting the bar high is motivational when you’re directly involved. Not from the stands or on the message boards. Fans feeling entitled to something based on the coach’s salary and who act like it’s their duty in life to hold the team to some standard are not helping.

    Basketball stands as an excellent contrast. People enjoy it because they don’t feel entitled to win the big ten every year or win the national championship every X years. The players are appreciated and cheered. Almost nobody wastes their time constantly comparing the programs accomplishments to Duke. The players leave feeling appreciated and loved and come back to AA in their spare time. It probably says something that the guys who do that in football are mostly from the 90s.

    So yeah, everyone can do what they want and say what they want but we just went through 10 year run where we saw clearly that Michigan is not guaranteed to be a top 10 powerhouse like they are now. On the national scale, Harbaugh has the program back to the levels of Bo, Mo, and Lloyd — if not better! If that turnaround disappoints you — I’m disappointed in you.

    This negativity is not a good thing. The players see it. Recruits see it. Nearly every recruit these days talks about “feeling at home”, “atmosphere”, and “family”. Michigan already has to fight off geographical disadvantages and bad weather. A impossible-to-please fanbase isn’t going to help.

    If the program culture continues around this track, if critical players continue to be jeered on their way out the door (e.g., Speight, Gary, Peppers), if fans continue to be pissed at top 10 finishes, if Harbaugh is fired, the program could end up in a really bad place. Given our recent history I would think the folly of this entitlement mentality is pretty obvious.

    My 2 cents.

    • Avatar
      Comments: 1138
      Joined: 1/19/2016
      je93
      Feb 22, 2019 at 11:14 PM

      This is so full of crap I don’t know where to start

      UM fans are not special: I’ve been around the country, and our fanbase is no more toxic than southern schools. If you don’t travel, just go over to RCMB or even IowaState’s message board during a game: we’re considered fanatics for a reason…
      Get some perspective before you spout off

      • Lanknows
        Comments: 4288
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        Lanknows
        Feb 23, 2019 at 7:07 PM

        Pleased to hear you didn’t spend all your days under that bridge.

        • Thunder
          Comments: 2812
          Joined: 7/13/2015
          Feb 23, 2019 at 7:34 PM

          Lanknows: For whatever reason, a lot of your posts have been going to the “spam” comment folder lately and haven’t been published. I don’t know why, but I just found them today and published probably 10-12 of them. Sometimes WordPress will identify comments as being “spam” if there are too many links within a comment, but that wasn’t the case with any of these, so it was weird.

          • Avatar
            Comments: 1138
            Joined: 1/19/2016
            je93
            Feb 23, 2019 at 9:10 PM

            Even WordPress doesn’t take him seriously

      • Avatar
        Comments: 933
        Joined: 8/11/2015
        WindyCityBlue
        Feb 23, 2019 at 8:38 PM

        No kidding. I just love to read those posts saying that recruits will go elsewhere because we criticize Michigan players too much on these boards, as if there is a high-profile program anywhere where the players and coaches aren’t subjected to constant scrutiny and criticism. Hell, if these guys played in a football hotbed in high school, they’ve already seen that. The ones with any brains know there’s no getting away from it.

        • Lanknows
          Comments: 4288
          Joined: 8/11/2015
          Lanknows
          Feb 24, 2019 at 11:10 AM

          The message board posts are mostly a symptom.

          I’m not talking about scrutiny.

You must belogged in to post a comment.