Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Tailgating like a champion!

Congratulations to Frankie D. over at UMTailgate.com for his TWO recent outstanding accomplishments. First, Frank (a Riverview alum just like Coach Carr) recently attended his 100th consecutive (home & away) Michigan Football game. Secondly, Frank's fabulous tailgate bash was just featured in an Ann Arbor News story by Jo Mathis. Now that is a MICHIGAN MAN! Go Blue!

*Note: Photo of Frank D. (front row, white shirt w/ blue M cap and gesturing w/ left hand) and fellow tailgaters by Lon Horwedel/The Ann Arbor News.

Rivalry Week: Playing for the Paul Bunyan Trophy

Last week the Wolverines were able to retain the Little Brown Jug by defeating the Minnesota Golden Gophers. It is well known that Coach Carr loves telling the tale of the Little Brown Jug. Apparently, Coach Carr is not as enamored with the history of the trophy associated with the Michigan State game. Coach Carr stated, "Actually, I don't even know why we play for the Paul Bunyan Trophy. I've never researched it, and I don't think I'll bother." It's no bother Coach. Just read on. Or not.

Presented for the first time in the 1953 meeting between the Wolverines and the Spartans, the Paul Bunyan Trophy is the lesser-known of Michigan's two annual trophy games, shadowed by the nationally recognized Little Brown Jug Game between Michigan and Minnesota.
The Bunyan Trophy was put into circulation by then Michigan Governor G. Mennen Williams. The prize consists of a four-foot wooden statue of the legendary Paul Bunyan astride an axe with feet planted on a map of the state of Michigan. Two flags -- one with the Michigan "M" and the other with the Michigan State "S" -- are planted on either side of Bunyan. A five-foot stand supports the statue.

Paul Bunyan Governor of Michigan Trophy, Year-by-Year:
1953 MSU 14, U-M 6
1954 U-M 33, MSU 7
1955 U-M 14, MSU 7
1956 MSU 9, U-M 0
1957 MSU 35, U-M 6
1958 MSU 12, U-M 12
1959 MSU 34, U-M 8
1960 MSU 24, U-M 17
1961 MSU 28, U-M 0
1962 MSU 28, U-M 0
1963 MSU 7, U-M 7
1964 U-M 17, MSU 10
1965 MSU 24, U-M 7
1966 MSU 20, U-M 7
1967 MSU 34, U-M 0
1968 U-M 28, MSU 14
1969 MSU 23, U-M 12
1970 U-M 34, MSU 20
1971 U-M 24, MSU 13
1972 U-M 10, MSU 0
1973 U-M 31, MSU 0
1974 U-M 21, MSU 7
1975 U-M 16, MSU 6
1976 U-M 42, MSU 10
1977 U-M 24, MSU 14
1978 MSU 24, U-M 15
1979 U-M 21, MSU 7
1980 U-M 27, MSU 23
1981 U-M 38, MSU 20
1982 U-M 31, MSU 17
1983 U-M 42, MSU 0
1984 MSU 19, U-M 7
1985 U-M 31, MSU 0
1986 U-M 27, MSU 6
1987 MSU 17, U-M 11
1988 U-M 17, MSU 3
1989 U-M 10, MSU 7
1990 MSU 28, U-M 27
1991 U-M 45, MSU 28
1992 U-M 35, MSU 10
1993 MSU 17, U-M 7
1994 U-M 40, MSU 20
1995 MSU 28, U-M 25
1996 U-M 45, MSU 29
1997 U-M 23, MSU 7
1998 U-M 29, MSU 17
1999 MSU 34, U-M 31
2000 U-M 14, MSU 0
2001 MSU 26, U-M 24
2002 U-M 49, MSU 3
2003 U-M 27, MSU 20
2004 U-M 45, MSU 37 (3OT)
2005 U-M 34, MSU 31 (OT)
2006 U-M 31, MSU 13

Go Blue!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Monday Press Conference- Week Ten

Rivalry game week with MSU has arrived and Coach Carr gave his thoughts today at his weekly press conference. Speaking on behalf of the players were Jake Long, Adrian Arrington, Morgan Trent, Jamar Adams and Will Johnson. To get ready for the intrastate rivalry contest, you can read the game notes (.pdf) and the 2007 Michigan State Football Media Guide (.pdf). Also, if you need some items for your gameday party you can head on over to The Great Divide. Go Blue!

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Rivalry Week

Braylon Edwards' 3 TD performance sparked the Wolverines comeback victory in triple OT in 2004.

2001 MSU vs. MI

Never forget! The Wolverines return once again to the scene of the crime that occurred in 2001 when they were robbed. The Spartans must pay (again) for that injustice.

MSU game time and TV coverage announced

The game time and TV coverage for the MSU game on November 3rd has been announced. Kickoff will be at 3:30 p.m. and the game will be broadcast on ABC (Regional). The announcement puts to rest the fear that the game would be "broadcast" on the Big Ten Network which would have meant that many fans throughout the State of Michigan would have been unable to watch the game. Go Blue!

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Carlos Brown continues to dazzle

Carlos Brown continues to impress in Mike Hart's absence. Brown had a career game versus Minnesota rushing for 132 yards and 2 touchdowns on 13 carries. The highlight of Brown's day was a spectacular 85-yard touchdown dash that marked the 7th longest touchdown run in Wolverine football history. Brown was able to display his rocket speed on the long run (pictured at right) that left everyone in his wake. The only downside to Brown's spectacular day was that he lost a fumble early in the game. Coach Carr does not tolerate turnovers and Brown will not be able to establish himself as a top option for the Wolverines unless he can prove his reliablity in holding onto the ball. Maybe Mike Hart can give him some pointers. Go Blue!

*Note: Photo of Carlos Brown (23) and Mario Manningham (86) by JOHN T. GREILICK/The Detroit News


Fans in the Stands II

There was good news and bad news about the attendance at The Big House. First, the good news. Today was Michigan's seventh home game of the 2007 season and Michigan announced it has already set a new regular season home attendance record [770,124] with one home game (Ohio State on November 17th) still remaining. Now for the bad news. Despite the claim made every game that "You are part of the largest crowd watching college football anywhere in America today", Penn State outdrew Michigan for the third football saturday this season. Penn State had 110,134 in attendance for its White Out against #1 Ohio State while 109,432 were at The Big House to watch Michigan retain the Little Brown Jug by beating Minnesota 34-10. (The other two football saturdays that Penn State outdrew Michigan this season were 9/8/07 when Michigan played Oregon and 10/6/07 when Michigan played Eastern Michigan). Go Blue!

*Note: Photo of cold Michigan fans huddling for warmth during the Minn. game on 10/27/07 by DAVID GURALNICK/The Detroit News

Michigan 34 Minnesota 10

The Wolverines retained the Little Brown Jug by defeating the Golden Gophers 34-10 in front of 109,432 soggy fans at The Big House. Following are the game recap, boxscore, play-by-play chart (.pdf), player participation chart, postgame notes, photos and quotes. Analysis to follow when I'm done drinking Absopure water from the Little Brown Jug. Go Blue!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

1969: Michigan-24 Ohio State-12

The kickoff time and television coverage for the 2007 Michigan/Ohio State game on Novemeber 17th was announced today. The game will be at Noon and will be broadcast by ESPN on ABC. To get you in the mood for this year's game against the current #1 ranked Buckeyes, here is a video clip of the 1969 game when Michigan defeated Ohio State 24-12 in Coach Schembechler's first season. Go Blue!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Carlos Brown breaks loose

Mike Hart (21 carries, 102 yards, 2 tds.) and Brandon Minor both were sidelined with injuries during the Purdue game which gave #3 running back Carlos Brown a chance to shine. Brown (soph.) had the best game of his career as he carried the ball 13 times for 66 yards and 2 touchdowns including a spectacular 29-yard touchdown run that displayed his athleticism. His sixty-six yards were more than he gained all of last season during his injury plagued freshman year. Earlier this season, Brown had a cast on and had trouble holding onto the ball. Now that Brown's cast has been removed and he is able to hold onto the ball, he looks to be dangerous. His emergence has occurred just in time for the Wolverines as Hart and Minor have suffered injuries that kept them from getting back into the game against Purdue. The extent of their injuries and whether they will be able to play next week is not yet known. If Hart and/or Minor can't play next week, Brown will be called on to carry more of the load. As he showed in the 4th quarter of today's Purdue game, Brown is ready. Last week, Coach Carr called for one of Hart's backups to step up and establish himself not only for this year but for next year as well. Brown may be on his way to doing just that. Go Blue!

Note: Photo of Carlos Brown (23) scoring a 29-yard TD vs. Purdue on 10-13-07 by JOHN T. GREILICK/The Detroit News


My chance encounter with the BTN's lead sideline reporter Charissa Thompson

At right is a photo I took of Big Ten Network lead sideline reporter Charissa Thompson whom I bumped into at the corner of Stadium & Main following the Homecoming game on October 13, 2007. Go Blue!


Michigan 48 #24 Purdue 21

Michigan romped past Purdue 48-21 in front of 110,888 fans at The Big House. Following are the game recap, boxscore, play-by-play chart (.pdf), player participation chart, postgame notes, photos and quotes. Much analysis to follow when I'm done catching up with my classmates who returned for Homecoming. Go Blue!

*Note: Photo of scoreboard of Michigan's Homecoming game of 10/13/07 vs. Purdue by mzgoblue

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Offensive review of the first half of the 2007 season

The Wolverines (4-2, 2-0) are halfway through their 2007 regular season schedule and it was a rough first half. Not only did Michigan start the season 0-2, it has continued to struggle at times even though it has won four consecutive games. Michigan's strength this season was supposed to be its offense. However, the offensive production has been less than stellar during the first six games. Here are how the Wolverines rank on offense in the Big Ten (all games):
  • Scoring Offense: 9th, 25.3 avg.
  • Total Offense: 10th, 399.7 avg.
  • Rush Offense: 4th, 203.3 avg.
  • Pass Offense: 9th, 196.3 avg.
  • Pass Efficiency: 10th, 115.2 rating
  • Red Zone Offense: 11th, 70.4%
  • Field Goals: 10th, 45.5%

Hopefully the Wolverines can get the offense going during the second half of the season. Go Blue!

Monday, October 08, 2007

Monday Press Conference- Week Seven

Halfway through the regular season schedule and with nothing but Big Ten games remaining, Coach Carr spoke at the Monday Press Conference. Speaking on behalf of the players were Brandent Englemon, Adrian Arrington, Morgan Trent and Adam Kraus. Up next for the Wolverines, the Purdue Boilermakers are coming to town. To prepare for their arrival, you can read the 2007 Purdue Football Media Guide. Also, here are the game notes (.pdf) for the upcoming game. Lastly, the game will be "broadcast" once again on the Big Ten Network. Thom Brenneman (play-by-play), Charles Davis (analysis) and Charissa Thompson (sideline) will call the game. Go Blue!


Sunday, October 07, 2007

Chad Henne continues to find his groove as he recovers from injury

The Eastern Michigan game marked Chad Henne's second start but first full game since returning from a leg injury. Specifically, Chad is recovering from a partial tear of the posterior cruciate ligament of the right knee. He is still playing with a brace on his knee. Chad had a good game against EMU as he continued to ease himself back into the swing of things. Chad was 17 of 26 passes for 195 yards and 1 touchdown with 2 interceptions. Chad appears ready to go as the Wolverines (4-2) head into the second half of their schedule which includes rivalry games against Michigan State and Ohio State.

At a press conference this past week, Henne let it be known that he did not exactly appreciate the fans booing his performance during the first two games of the season and their calling for his backup Ryan Mallett to be put in the game in his stead. Henne said it reminded him of the Brady/Henson days and Henne stated in no uncertain terms that he was going to lead the team. He stated,"Through my injury and them wanting to chant Ryan's coming in, it reminds me of going back to Tom Brady's days when Drew Henson was coming in. It's all a bunch of B.S. but it's not going to happen. I have too much pride to let that happen. I'm not going to let myself slip just because of one thing. Ryan's a great person and I have a lot of respect for him, but it's my team, it's my senior year and I'm going to go out and play my best football these next couple games." Unfortunately, I saw this coming back when Mallett first enrolled at Michigan. Despite the fact that Henne is Michigan's all-time TD passing leader (and will hold most other records by the time he is done), there is a vocal part of the fan base that is disgruntled and wants to move on to the next big thing (i.e., Ryan Mallett). I can understand Henne's frustration as he deserves better considering everything he has done for the program during his four years. He is a tremendous leader and an outstanding quarterback. I hope he can close out his career with seven (7) more victories. Go Blue!

*Note: Photo of Chad Henne (7) by JOHN T. GREILICK/The Detroit News from the 9/29/07 Northwestern game

Fans in the stands

Michigan had 108,415 in attendance on Saturday at The Big House for the Eastern Michigan game. However, when PA announcer Carl Grapentine announced the attendance for the game, I do not recall if he gave the typical preamble "The largest crowd watching football anywhere in America today." For the second time this season, Penn State outdrew Michigan. Penn State had 108,951 in attendance for Saturday's Penn State/Iowa game.

Of the fans who do make it to the Big House regularly, one of the most popular is "Hot Dog Man" Jay Trzcinski. Apparently, it started last season when Mr. Trzcinski, a Senior in the College of Engineering, flung a hot dog to a buddy during the Iowa game. He then went and bought ten (10) hot dogs and threw them out in the student section. Thus, the legend of "Hot Dog Man" was born. The problem is that "Hot Dog Man" is not as popular with the ushers as he is with the students. He has been threatened with eviction if he continues to throw dogs to the students. As popular as "Hot Dog Man" is with the students, I venture to say that he is the #2 most popular fan. The most popular fan is Michigan's (more fully clothed) version of Jenn Sterger. She is second from right in the picture shown above. Apparently, she often sits in the front row as she was first pictured by the Detroit News photographer at the Oregon game. This popular football fan is apparently creating quite a stir on the internets every time they flash her image on TV such as in the screen capture shown above from the Penn State game. Next thing you know, she will have her own column on SI.com. Go Blue!
*Note: Screen capture of Big Ten Network broadcast of the Michigan/Penn State game from Michigan Against the World

Michigan 33 Eastern Michigan 22

Michigan won the battle of Washtenaw County in front of 108,415 warm fans at The Big House. Following is the game recap, boxscore, play-by-play chart (.pdf), player participation chart, postgame notes, photos, and quotes. Much analysis to follow when I'm done wiping the sweat from my brow. Go Blue!