Sunday, September 2, 2012

Memo to David Brandon


Date: 11:40 PM September 1st, 2012

To: David Brandon, Athletic Director University of Michigan

From: The Big House Blog

Subject:  Success Strategies

How is the Brand right now?   Was the $4.5 Million worth it?   Did you put your most important business unit in a position to be successful tonight?

I think you know all the answers to those questions and I expect those questions are going through your brain as you go back to your hotel tonight. 

Your top business unit had a successful season last year and won 11 games.   Even though that was success in many fans eyes.  I'm sure your eyes could tell there was still a lot to do at Schembechler Hall before the Wolverines were back to being consistently great again.   You also should have known that 2 years ago under the Rich Rodriguez that Alabama was at a championship level and Michigan was not.

The loss tonight is not on Denard Robinson or the new defensive line.  The loss isn't even the coaches fault.   It's yours.   This game should have never been scheduled.   Did you even look at the schedule this year before you shook Jerry Jones hand?  You took a home game away from the Big House and most likely a win for an embarrassing loss on National TV.    For what?  Money?  Exposure?  The Michigan Brand?   It wasn't worth it and you should have known that before you scheduled it.  You don't serve Domino's Pizza at a $100 plate gourmet restaurant. 

You owe an apology to Blake Countess and Taylor Lewan's knee.  You owe an apology to Denard Robinson in the ice tub next week and you owe an apology to the Michigan faithful who had to watch that tonight.  Not to mention the fans that spent thousands of dollars to travel to Dallas, when most of them would have preferred to spend $100 and watched Michigan play a MAC school in the Big House. 

Michigan Football is not Michigan Football yet.  It's back on track and going in the right direction but doing what you did tonight does not help the cause, it hurts it.   This team/program needs to continue to build it's confidence and it's resume so it can get back to a championship level.   Even Lloyd Carr's last few teams struggled against the USC's of the world.    This team didn't deserve to be put that  position tonight.   You don't take a young boxer working his way up the ladder and throw him in the ring with Floyd Mayweather.   Getting dominated kills the fighters confidence and it's tough to recover from that.   I sure hope this team can bouce back because the Big Ten Title is still the goal.   I hope the residual effects of the loss tonight doesn't carry over to next week or in 3 weeks against ND.    If it does, that's on you as well.    It's not very often an AD can cause a team to lose a couple games before the Big Ten season even starts. 

I'm not angry because I expected Michigan wouldn't win tonight.  I'm sad because Denard and this team deserved better.  They deserved a chance to play at home and win a football game to open the year.   Before they go on the road to play ND, Nebraska and Ohio State.  This game should have never been scheduled and I'm pretty sure you understand that now.    Too bad you didn't realize that 2 years ago.

By the way, you probably should send an apology to Floyd Mayweather as well. 


DoubtyMustafa said...

Thanks for writing this memo. There's a lot that could be said after a loss like this, but the whole time I kept thinking how irresponsible this was on the part of Dave Brandon. We aren't ready to play Michigan Football yet because we still have many players suited for spread play in the Big East. I thought about how he scheduled this when Rich Rod was still destroying what took 130+ years to build. How could he schedule this game back then and how much worse would this have been if Rich Rod was still coaching? Tremendous recently had a poll asking readers to grade Brandon. I was generous and gave a B based on some of the positive things he's done so far. But he needs to reassess how he brands something so storied as Michigan football. This does nothing but tarnish the legacy of the people who made Michigan the winningest program in college football history, as does every single alternative uniform that he approves. Dave needs to stop reinventing the wheel. Nurture the roots that Hoke and co. are laying down. Give this program a chance to flourish and when Hoke has the bodies that he needs to truly play Michigan football, schedule them best and see how things turn out. This was tough to experience and I don't hope to witness this ever again.

JQP said...

What Michigan Football of Old are you talking about? Michigan never did that great outside of the conference, which was primarily a Big Ten of Big Two Little Eight for many many years. If they had, Bo would've had a national championship. Michigan has rarely fielded a team the caliber of what Alabama now has.

Don't blame Brandon for dashing your delusional fantasies. You're saying you'd rather see Michigan beat up on weaker teams than measure themselves to the real competition out there. Is that the Michigan tradition we value so much? Yeah, let's keep our heads stuck in the ground and sing Hail to the Victors and pretend we're some football power we're obviously not, and rarely have been.

Blame Borges for single-handedly neutralizing one of college football's true running threats by pedestrian play-calling and an ignorant, arrogant insistence of trying to make a great running quarterback become something he's not. Alabama couldn't stop Denard from gaining running yards as well as Big Al just did tonight with his play-calling.

uncle ron said...

DoubtyMusstafa I totaly agree with for JQP I don't totaly doubt you but your comments about Big Al are dead nuts on....for someone who is supposed to be an Offensive genious I give him a D..... again.

Brian S Hall said...

I cannot disagree more. While we all hope and expect Hoke and company to return Michigan to "glory", the fact is, despite all their talk, Hoke and especially Borges seem intent on forcing square pegs into round holes. The loss is on them. Period.
As for faulting Brandon, no way. If *ever* a Michigan AD is asked if they want the team on prime time, national television, against the top team from another conference, you *always* take that game. Always. If Michigan ever fears to take that game, I cease to be a fan.

Big35Hurt said...

The other VERY frustrating impact is that as Michigan tries to become a REAL player for ELITE SEC caliber players, going on National TV and looking like a WAC caliber school doesn't make us look very attractive to the Treadwell's. Green's, etc of the world. It feels like we have taken 1 step forward and then 2 steps back again.

Squashman said...

I thought this game especially scheduled for this year was stupid from the get go. We play at Norte dame, at Nebraska and at Ohio. I disagree with your thoughts on app state . I would like to play them every year for the next ten years and bury the demons.

DoubtyMustafa said...

So JQP and Brian S Hall, you prefer that Dave Brandon schedule these sorts of prime time games that gives us unbeatable exposure and makes the nation's best players jump at the opportunity to play for Michigan? Well that's not exactly how things played out, did they? That was an EMBARRASSMENT in every imaginable way and you guys are applauding Brandon for scheduling this game? Bless those athletes, but they were not built to play teams like Alabama. Sure, we have SOME players that could compete at that level, but as a team, we won't be able to play those games for at least another 3 years. JQP, you completely MISSED the point. It's not about playing weaker competition and thinking highly of ourselves. It's about playing tough teams that we match up well against because we're not in a position to be playing Alabama. Heck, we weren't ready to play ND or Virginia Tech and had those guys not shot themselves in the foot, we would've lost those games too. I'm not the one who's delusional. You thinking this somehow helps us "measure" ourselves is delusional. And don't get me wrong, Borges and Hoke are not free of blame. But I stick by my original statement that we had no business playing in a game like this. At least not until Hoke's recruits fill the roster and have had a couple years to learn how to play smash mouth football.

Voice of Reason said...


Thank you for your commentary. There are times when somethings need to be said, even though there are factions that disagree.

paul said...

"I thought this game especially scheduled for this year was stupid from the get go. We play at Norte dame, at Nebraska and at Ohio. I disagree with your thoughts on app state . I would like to play them every year for the next ten years and bury the demons."

You're rated 8th preseason and are coming off a BCS bowl win. And you're afraid to play a schedule because it's "loaded", because it includes a preseason unranked team, and two preseason 16-20 teams? I happen to think Ohio State and ND will both end up top 10 this year, which means your schedule WILL end up loaded, but preseason it really didn't seem too bad.

The general sentiment here in this post is bizarre to me. You don't get back to the top by ducking people. ND had some garbage years, should they have dropped USC? No, you keep matching up with those guys. You need to know where you stand and where you need to get to. If development of a program is ever hurt by a match-up, then you've got real coaching problems, and the guy probably wasn't going to get you there anyway. Weak little Stanford, when Harbaugh was starting out, played USC and beat them. In any case, you're much farther along than Harbaugh's Stanford was, and if your coaches and players had showed up, you would probably still have lost, but you wouldn't have been humiliated. Your AD did nothing wrong here. He did his job and got you a great primetime matchup in a great venue. It was the game everyone was watching. That's what you want, it's not a mistake.