Thursday, July 9, 2020

Michigan Thursday: Not A Good Day For Football In The Fall

As Big Ten officials meet to try to figure out a way to have some type of adjusted season, other factors around College Football are trending the wrong way: 

  • The Ivy League cancelled all fall sports 
  • OSU had to shut down workouts due to COVID spread
  • North Carolina had to do the same 
  • Stanford shutdown 11 sports (not football) 
This news caused me to think a couple thoughts:  How are rich kids going to get into Stanford now that their parents can't bribe the rowing coach?  The Ivy League is really not risking anything by shutting down those sports, as their sports programs lose money.   On the other hand, I don't think we can ignore some of the highest academic institutions and feeling its not safe.   Personally, I think we should listen to the smartest people in the US, not the most powerful or political.  

Now to a bit of good news:  Tom Deinhart from Rivals is reporting that the Big Ten is considering a 10 game season probably played over 13-14 weeks.

This makes sense to me but I would at least like one non-conference MAC game for the first game of the season, so Michigan can iron out any mistakes before opening the Big Ten season.   With that said, "beggars can't be choosers" when it comes to football this fall. 

Some folks talk about a spring football season.   I don't know if this is viable or not, as NFL ready kids are not going to want to risk injury so close to the NFL draft.   Another issue is do they play in the Spring and then in the Fall in 2021?  That is a lot of football in one calendar year.  

I think the Big Ten will try to do football in the fall because financially its so important to many programs but it seems a bit like a Hail Mary at this point.   Can you imagine trying to keep COVID away from 100 college kids in a contact sport?  I hope I'm wrong and the virus starts trending the other way.  

  • Jimmy had a zoom presser yesterday and social media blew up for a minute on statement that was taken out of context on football and COVID.   The real news was that Jimmy was in contract extension talks prior to COVID and those talks are on hold until all the issues are cleared up.  

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Wolverine Wednesday: Mid-Week News and Notes

  • Rumor mill is spinning that The Big 10 Athletics Directors and Presidents are meeting and planning on how to handle football in the Fall.   The best bet is some type of limited regional schedule.   We will see how it plays out.   One idea is to play, every other week to protect against positive tests.  This would be interesting as long at they tier the games, so we have Big Ten Football every Saturday.  Side note, please don't have Warde negotiate any of the games or terms.  

  • Xavier Worthy, 4 star California WR is expected to announce his decision on Friday.  His nickname is flash and his speed has been described as "explosive".   Seems to be down to a Wolverine or Ducks decision.   Insiders believe he has already silently committed to one of those schools.  😀

  • Grand Rapids 4 star guard Kobe Bufkin is announcing his decision on Friday.  Looks good for the good guys! 

  • MSU Basketball got a commitment from 5 star guard Max Christie yesterday.  Big pick-up for the Spartans. 

  • Pioneer HS 3 star WR Ali Fisher has committed to Buffalo.  Congrats! 

  • 2022 Oak Park (Ill.) Fenwick pro-style quarterback Kaden Cobb is expected to talk today to Michigan QB coach Ben McDaniels. 

  • DeWitt HS will open their football season against Traverse City Central at Michigan Stadium, it seems there will be a number of opening day HS games at the Big House.  

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Michigan Tuesday: Basketball Recruiting Heating Up

Michigan Basketball needs a boat load of players in the 2021 class.  The class size could be 6-7 players which is huge number in basketball recruiting. 

Michigan recently landed 4 star Isaiah Barnes from Chicago and yesterday at 6:00 AM they landed 3 star Will Tschetter from Minnesota.   Will is ranked #149 player in the country by 24/7 and Phil Martelli led his recruitment to Michigan. 

Will is a 6'8 225 pound forward and has nice range, he shot 45% from 3 last season.   His offer list included the likes of Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, Cincy, and Arkansas and more.   Will is much closer to his floor then ceiling and is expected to be a multi-year player in Ann Arbor. 

Welcome big man! 

Michigan is also trending for Grand Rapids guard Kobe Bufkin.   Kobe is rated as a 4 star player and the 78 player and the 15th shooting guard in the nation by 24/7.   Kobe's offer list includes the likes of MSU, DePaul, Northwestern, Mizzu, and TCU.    Kobe's measurables are 6'4 and 175 pounds.   His name checks out!

Positive news is expected later this week. 

  • Ivy League is expected to announce moving football to the Spring. 

  • Charles Matthews finished his Michigan degree as he rehabbed from his ACL injury.   I still wonder if there is some type of insurance settlement after he inquired himself during an NBA Draft workout.  

  • Andre Rison says an assistant coach hit him while he was at MSU.  

Monday, July 6, 2020

Michigan Monday: Finally Some Schedule Rumors

We are now in early July and team practices will be starting soon.   Michigan still has a trip to Washington on the schedule for September 5th.  What the hell is going on? 

How is that game and others not being rescheduled?   Finally we are hearing rumors that Michigan and other Big Ten teams could be making some schedule changes very soon.   Michael Spath from SI finally published an article with what he is hearing about the schedule. 

I won't ruin the article if you want to read it but he did have a few shocking things in there.  He does expect Michigan to play football this season if at all possible.  Here are some of his other expectations:

  • Some Big Ten Schools won't play football at all 
  • Washington and Arkansas State games will be cancelled
  • Those games will be replaced by regional MAC schools 
  • ND could be a fill in game (due to driving distance)
  • Michigan could play a home and home (yes, multiple games against the same team in the same season) against teams like IU, MSU, and OSU 
It seems the Big Ten or NCAA doesn't want to take a leadership role in this and be the first to announce changes, so schools are scrambling.   For example,  Western Michigan just replaced their opening weekend game from Colgate to Stony Brook.  Why wouldn't they travel an hour to the Big House?  Maybe that still can happen?

The States of Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, and Indiana seem to be in the drivers seat for this type of arrangement.  There are so many college programs in these states/region.  Just in state, U of M could play Central, Western, and Eastern.  Not to mention all the schools in Ohio that are very close like Toledo, Akron, and Bowling Green. 

If these massive changes are going to happen, they will have to happen soon, as these schedules have been in place for many years.  If your going to re-engineer your entire schedule, you will need plenty of time to complete that!  

One a side note, no thanks to multiple games against OSU.   Unless its in some Big Ten playoff tournament thing.  Let's play Toledo instead of ND, I like ND living with the outcome of the last game for the next 10 years.   Cincinnati is also 3+ hours from the Big House as well.   Let's relight the Harbaugh - Fickell feud. 

If this regional model does happen, how does that effect a Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, and Nebraska who just top of mind might have a harder time scheduling schools in driving distance.  

  • Michigan Basketball landed a commitment at 6:00 AM today from 3 star Will Tschetter who is listed at 6'8" and 225 pounds from Minnesota.   I will update this commitment on Tuesday, as I need the content topics!  :-)