Friday, October 27, 2023

Michigan Friday: The Happy Meal is missing some Nuggets

My one and only ask for this week was that it would be a quiet week.  That did not happen as every program in America tied itself to the sign stealing investigation and clearly Michigan was scouting them at some point.  Even Liberty was telling jokes on Twitter. 

The NCAA was reportedly in Ann Arbor yesterday but the assistant coaches were on the road recruiting.  By the way it's hard for the NCAA not to be in Ann Arbor when Jim Stapleton lives and works in A2.  Speaking of Stapleton, he is red hot at John U, and has threatened legal action.  

The way the media is covering this story and reporting every little nugget makes the situation look worse than the entire Happy Meal.  

What do we know that seems accurate:
  • Connor Stalions is on Michigan's staff 
    • Connor bought tickets for other people to attend Big Ten and other NCAA games 
    • The assumed purpose was to record coaches' signals 
    • A reasonable assumption is then those recordings were uploaded to some type of cloud share.  As you're not going to be able to email, 3.5 hours of coaching signals. 
    • Someone in Connor's network flipped on him and showed the NCAA the cloud drive.
    • Connor seems like a zealous Michigan Football junkie looking to make a name for himself with the Michigan coaches by working hard and crossing a line or two to show his value. 
    • Connor has been on Michigan's sideline at every game holding paper.
    • Connor's information might not be accurate as coaches change signs every week.
  • Right now, there doesn't seem to be a path to Harbaugh, besides these things happening in his organization. 
  • Yesterday it was revealed that the investigation into Michigan's former OC Matt Weiss cyber situation and this NCAA investigation are not related.  Though the Matt Weiss investigation continues and the FBI is assisting, which is not uncommon in any cybercrime situation. 
  • Every NCAA Football program is trying to steal the other signals.  Every dumb story about TCU changing signals or doing dummy signals, is just plain lazy work by the media.  This happens every week at every game.   I don't care if you send a network of people or get the signs off TV, YouTube, or the coaches' tape, stealing signs is a part of college football. 
  • Michigan Legal Twitter is on this and there seems to be NCAA Bylaws about allowing 3rd parties scouting.  The NCAA also considered changing this rule in 2021 because its outdated and gives little to no competitive advantage. Anyone with an iPhone can record coaches at a game now.  A fan could easily do this and send it to a coach.  
  • The media is lazy and doesn't understand technology.  Journalists are paid for their stories, folks like Pete Thamel are paid on clicks.  Every time he runs with a little nugget, he turns it into Michigan is getting the death penalty.  Which drives more and more clicks.   The story about a 3rd party accessing a Michigan drive was interesting to me.  First off, if a 3rd party did that, it would be an actual crime committed by that 3rd party.  This goes back to my point about the one drive or drop box or whatever Connor was using for his network of nerds to upload the recordings. 
  • The leaks from the NCAA are obviously trying to hurt Michigan.  I don't know Warde or know what he does every day, but I don't see any public facing leadership here.   You cannot tell me that the NCAA can leak all this information and Michigan has a gag order?  If Warde can't get these leaks to stop, close the old investigation, sign Harbaugh to new contract, and put Michigan in a better light with this investigation, it's time for a new AD at Michigan.   Santa I think you know what we want for Christmas!

Yes, the leaks and waterfall of new information every day is tiring and frustrating.  This is the world we live in, where investigative journalism is dead and Michigan Football anything drives eyeballs and clicks.  Peter Thamel is not Adam Schefter or Shams and will continue to throw nuggets until the story is too old or completely dead.  In between reports that Ole Miss QB's might be out due to a turf toe injury.  


Blue said...

The steady flow of leaks one after another that barely changes the overall picture seems the work of an outfit to purposely damage Michigan's reputation as badly as possible of which the longer this continues the more embedder the damage becomes, sadly Michigan is executing not one iota of counter response, leaking or otherwise, in an effort to ward off further misplaced abasement.

In the end, whenever that may be, I believe this mountain of dramatizing the media has created will be nothing more than a mole hill.

A member over on MGOBLUE "Sopwith" of whom has been accurate from the first day of the investigation had this to say on his latest post ---

1. "Follow the Money" won't lead anywhere. The money indeed came from Stalions' personal funds. Stop biting your fingernails off.

2. No coaches/staff knew anything other than he appeared to be a Ray Babbitt-level savant at deciphering signals from the normal raw materials. This isn't escalating.

3. Only the Vast Network (TM) had the shared Google drive pw, but the drive link was installed on his work computer. Not clear if anyone in Schembechler could potentially have accessed but WaPo took this and spun it in the most click-maximizing, heartburn-inducing way.

4. Besides the manifesto, expect the eventual leak of a much lighter read: a one-page illustrated instruction document for the scouts cleverly codenamed How to Steal Signals because of course it is. Like The Warriors, it's good. Real good. Can you dig it?

Sourcing details have been provided to the MGoProprietors.

Brady2017 said...

Bob, great post as usual. I know you're not a big fan of Warde's, but keep in mind he cannot operate in a knee-jerk, Twitter paced frenzied manner to make an official comment. Not all the facts are in, and the fake media's stories probably hold a lot of half truths and inaccuracy. Michigan hasn't even been served an official notice of allegations by the NCAA, so its hard to comment on rumors and speculation. Everything Warde says and does will be held against him by the fake media and NCAA. What I DO hope Warde is doing is discussing all the current information with Tom Marrs or a good attorney. As in any legal situation, the best thing you can do is shut the fuck up, and that's what the whole Michigan program is doing. This is a positive sign. You don't want players, coaches and A.D.s spouting off and causing even more commotions. Things will work themselves out fine. Don't listen to the fake (MSU) media that is full of hate and wants to bring Michigan down. This is a situation that only WINNING programs have to deal with, which this state is not accustomed to. Let's focus on winning the Natty. GO BLUE!! Stay focused and dominate!!!

MichiganMan said...

Guys don't write so much. No one reads it... Harbor last year..

Blue for life

Tom said...

1). There has been NO investigation started by the NCAA on Michgian on this or even on "Cheeseburger-gate".

2). Everything you read/hear/watch is all media driven alarmist BS. It reveals who hates Michigan and who is objective and fair. ESPN hates Michigan. Fox, Joel Klatt, Colin Coherd and others have been fair. The Washington Post is just a sleezy rag.

3). I'm not aware Michigan has broken as single NCAA rule - even taking the most egregious accusations online. It's going to be tough for the NCAA to start an "investigation" based on what even the most egregious accusations are being made.

4) Have you noticed not a SINGLE NCAA coach has come out publically and condemned Michigan? Very revealing.

Gemini4 said...

I have an issue with our Michigan athletic director. I believe he has something against Jim Harbaugh. I believe that Jim should be considered innocent until proven guilty. However, in the sports section of the Sunday edition of the Detroit Free Press, there is a report that the Wall Street Journal has revealed that a generous Michigan contract offer for Jim has been rescinded. The Detroit Free reports that

"According to a report by the Wall Street Journal, Michigan rescinded a new contract offer to Jim that would make him the highest-paid coach in college football amid the sign-stealing allegations. Harbaugh is in line to lead the Wolverines to their third consecutive College Football Playoff appearance this season as No. 2 Michigan boasts an 8-0 record. A Michigan spokesperson also told Wall Street Journal it doesn't comment on employment contracts until they are completed and executed."

I wonder who would have known and revealed the contract.