Thursday, May 22, 2008

Weekly Update May 22, 2008

Apologies for not getting to this sooner, my new job has ridiculous hours.

Big Ten championships for track and field, and baseball.

After losing to Little Sister in the first round of the Big Ten softball tournament, Wright State, our first opponent in the NCAA regional tried to give us a challenge. Their coach Mike Larabee made a bold statement that Wright State would do the same thing that Appalachian State did to us last September 1, only in softball.

“I want to remind you guys of the beginning of the football season. Appalachian State went into the Big House and beat Michigan. It was one of the biggest upsets in history and we can beat Michigan too,” Larabee said.

“This year, expect to go to Ann Arbor and win an NCAA Regional Tournament. We’re going to shock the softball world.”

Yeah, right and guess who gives up a ten run inning.

Our ladies in blue cruised to a regional championship and will host Virginia Tech in the Super Regionals tomorrow in Ann Arbor.

Baseball set the record for most Big Ten wins in a season. And they play Illinois in their first game tonight.

One thing about this that i will say about our baseball team and about college baseball in general. Everybody is now saying that they are going to host an NCAA regional, this is not guaranteed, yes the tournament selection committee wants to let more northern teams host but there is another team that has a shot, St. John's from the Big East. They have played in a much tougher conference than we have and also play in a much more baseball oriented area in New York City. If we don't win the Big Ten tournament we will really be at the mercy of the tournament selection committee to give us a regional because we haven't played the type of schedule that the other teams that will host have played.

That being said, i have no reason to believe that they can't do this or that Michigan and St. John's won't end up hosting regionals. Rich Maloney knows better than anybody out there that hosting the regional will be the key for this team's goal, Omaha. When i talked to him before the start of the season he told me that if they host a regional and (god forbid) a super regional, there's the key to going to Omaha, home field advantage.

P.S. sorry to pepper this post with links like YSMISB, i'm just really tired from this past week's workload.



Monday, May 5, 2008


Anger trigger number one: Ekpe Udoh is transferring.

To Ekpe i have nothing but questions:

Ekpe, Why did you decide to leave? Doesn't Michigan count as part of your family, weren't you concerned for your teammates? Don't you value a world class education while being able to attract NBA scouts? Was the weather in Michigan really that bad? Was it Beiline's fault?????

To Beiline i have very little other than rage:

Dang you Beiline, why couldn't you convince Ekpe to stay???? Are you still oblivious to the way big ten basketball is played??? Do you realize what position this puts the basketball team in, we have no defense or inside presence without him!!! Do you realize that or are you so obsessed with getting a good outside shooter that you would sacrifice our only great defender???

Do you plan on recruiting guys who can play defense to play with Manny and Wright, because if you do you'd better get them now!!!!

Anger Trigger Number Two: Big Ten softball championships.

I understand that Michigan and Northwestern ended both of their regular season's tied for the big ten championship. What i really don't understand is how they ended up deciding the host of the big ten tournament by flipping a coin. I'll admit i wouldn't be ranting about this if the coin had landed in favor of Michigan, but shouldn't the host spot go to the team that had the better regular season record. If that were the case then the Wolverines would have hosted because they have only lost five games all season compared to the Wildcats eleven. Michigan is also the sixth ranked team in the country they went 5-1 against ranked non-conference opponents before splitting with the 12th ranked Wildcats. I highly doubt Northwestern's record is nearly as impressive.

Anger Trigger Number Three: No Original Six Stanly Cup!!!!

With both Montreal and the New York Rangers falling in five games in their second round playoff matches the only original six team left standing is my own home town Detroit Red Wings. While i love the Detroit Red Wings a lot, i feel that i am an old time hockey fan more. I hate the fact that all these teams started migrating south under Gary Bettman's leadership of the NHL, it just made no sense to me.


This year i thought that things would be different, i thought that if two northern teams were to play for the Cup hockey would at least have a return to some of the former dignity it used to have. And i thought what better way than to have two original six squads duke it out. As of yesterday, it is no longer meant to be and i am sad for it. While i remain happy that the Red Wings are still in the hunt for the Cup and i also am glad to see two northern teams in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia fighting for the Eastern crown, i cannot help but despise the presence of the Dallas Stars in NHL's final four.

How is it possible to play hockey in Texas?

Gary Bettman

Weekly Update: Cinco de Mayo style

Due to my new job's bizarre scheduling and the way Michigan sports news goes i wasn't able to post anything of substance until now.

The baseball team took three out of four that school in Columbus. They did it without amazing hitting either. In the first two games the Michigan nine got most of their runs in the last two innings, in both of those games prior to that point it was tied 1-1. This was helped by the fact that Nate the Recker did not have a homer in the weekend for the first time since the Iowa series that started the conference schedule. Nevertheless the one man wrecking crew did help the team with two RBI's over the course of the series, but the fact that he went hitless in both ends of the doubleheader on saturday plus the fact that they had trouble scoring runs that day speaks volumes as to how much his bat means to the team.

Of course with this team when one man isn't doing his best another always steps up and this weekend it was Zach Putnam who pitched a complete game and drove in a run to aid his cause on friday (the National League scouts are loving this guy). Putnam has been overshadowed in my opinion by the recker simply because of Nate's home run clout and that's unfair. Putnam was a preseason all-american and this weekend he proved to us all why that is.

In any case the Wolverines are now 2 1/2 games ahead of Purdue as those pesky Hoosiers in Bloomington took two out of three from their in state rivals.