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Posted on Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:32 p.m.

Michigan football team stumbles on offense, defense in 38-13 loss to Illinois

By Dave Birkett


Michigan quarterback Tate Forcier reacts after losing a fumble in the fourth quarter against Illinois, the third time in the game Michigan fumbled and lost the ball. (Photo: Melanie Maxwell |

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Going, going, almost gone.

Michigan’s sinking season took another turn for the worse Saturday as the Wolverines dropped their fourth straight Big Ten game, 38-13, to an Illinois team that had not beaten a Football Bowl Subdivision opponent in almost a year.

The defense was its usual shoddy self. Special teams weren’t much better. And Michigan’s once potent offense self-destructed on the goal line against the worst rushing defense in the Big Ten.

Illinois stuffed Michigan on four consecutive runs from the 1-yard line early in the second half, then scored on a 99 1/2-yard drive to begin an onslaught of 31 unanswered points.

Mikel Leshoure zipped 70 yards untouched up the middle of the field to start the seismic momentum shift that left Michigan’s season in turmoil.

Michigan (5-4, 1-4) failed to qualify for a bowl for the second straight week. The Wolverines have three games left to get their magical sixth victory, and only next week’s home game against Purdue looks winnable. They close the season at Wisconsin and home against Ohio State.

Rodriguez also is dealing with an NCAA investigation into allegations of improper practice time, and his biggest supporter in the athletic department, athletic director Bill Martin, is stepping aside once his replacement is found.

“We just got a lot of things to fix and get right,” a subdued Rodriguez said in his post-game press conference. “Every person in the program has got to take it upon themselves to do all they can to get things playing at a high level.”

Michigan didn’t play anywhere near that Saturday.

The Wolverines allowed a season-high 377 yards rushing, and Illinois (2-6, 1-5) nearly had three 100-yard backs in Leshoure (21 carries, 150 yards), Jason Ford (12-128) and quarterback Juice Williams, who finished with 97 yards after taking four sacks.

Most of their damage came in the second half, after Illinois’ impressive goal-line stand.

Tate Forcier found Roy Roundtree for a 76-yard pass on Michigan’s opening drive of the third quarter, but Terry Hawthorne chased Roundtree down at the 1. Officials signaled that Roundtree scored, but the call was overturned on replay.

Carlos Brown was stopped on the next three plays, all runs, and Brandon Minor, who sat most of the game with an ankle injury, replaced Brown on fourth down. Minor, Michigan’s power back, stumbled through the line for what was initially ruled a touchdown, but replays showed his elbow was down before he crossed the goal line.

Rodriguez said the play was “a big momentum change,” and cornerback Troy Woolfolk said it deflated Michigan to the point of no return.

“We were trying to step on their throat and extend the lead,” Woolfolk said. “Once that didn’t happen, people just started worrying and stuff and we just let it get to us and the momentum changed down on the 1-yard line.”

Michigan went three-and-out on its next two possessions, and Illinois, which was booed off the field at halftime, struck for touchdowns by Williams (a 3-yard run) and London Davis (on a 2-yard pass), plus a 23-yard Matt Eller field goal after Forcier lost a fumble deep in Illini territory.

Jason Ford capped the scoring with a 79-yard touchdown run with 1:45 to play.

“We’re all frustrated because we gave it away,” defensive end Brandon Graham said. “We was the better team today. Not taking anything from Illinois cause they came, they game-planned us, but we know we gave it away.”

Illinois, which had not scored more than 17 points against an FBS team all year, finished with 500 yards of total offense.

Forcier was 13-of-23 passing for 257 yards, but lost two fumbles.

Junior Hemingway also muffed a punt for Michigan, which has 12 turnovers in its last three Big Ten games and fell to 1-8 in October under Rodriguez.

“We got to stop the snowball,” defensive tackle Mike Martin said. “We can’t let it get bigger. We got to end this right now.”

Dave Birkett covers University of Michigan football for He can be reached by phone at 734-623-2552 or by e-mail at Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.



Tue, Nov 3, 2009 : 3:07 p.m.

Look, firing RR now would kill our program for years. What we have to realize is that when LC left that was truly the end of the Bo era. After every big time program loses a big time coach there is always a period of uneasiness/losing (look at Nebraska(Osborne), Iowa(Fry), Kansas State(Synder), Florida(Spurrier)) until the new system is put into place. Now I am not proclaiming RR as the savior, all I am asking for is a little patience. Now I know as well as you that listening to little bro and tOSU laugh is quite frustrating, but what we have to remember is that they both have had dozens of years like this and we have had plenty to laugh at over the years. Our time will come soon, we will be on top again we just have to have some patience. Remember, those who stay will be champions.

Lewis P

Tue, Nov 3, 2009 : 3:01 p.m.

Rich is crazy if he believes that team he puts on the field can win anything in the Big 10 the players are just to small and by the 3rd and 4th quarter those kids are just tired. They seem to continue trying but they aren't strong enough. Rich should have known that wasn't going to work. What the people at Michigan needed to do was stop listening to ESPN and continued to play Michigan football there was nothing wrong with the system we had in place. Rich has to go and we need a coach who understands the Big 10 system.

Man in the Mirror

Mon, Nov 2, 2009 : 9:23 a.m.

Rich Rod is stubborn and nothing is going to change him nor "HIS OFFENSE or HIS PLAYERS". He is going to keep feeding UM fans this and you are gonna like it. If you don't then tough. In four years he will have "HIS PLAYERS" that will hopefully understand his concept of college ball. Sure they will be small because the grade A kids won't come to UM unless they are seeking their 15 minutes of game fame like the Forciers in a losing program. The sub-par kids will come because they will have a chance to be on TV and play for UM instead of a Division 3 school. GO BLUE! IN RICH ROD YOU TRUST!!!!!


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 8:44 p.m.

There are times when you know "it is over". Someone at UM started the FREEP Investigation, just in case it turned out that RR was the wrong hire. Now we know what will happen; RR to be terminated for NCAA rules violation. It is over.

Blue in the 614

Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 7:10 p.m.

Add me to the list of fans that think RR is the problem.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 5:51 p.m.

Why would you run it the 4th time when you didnt make it the first 3 times. Has RR ever heard of play action especially with the athletic QB's we have.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 3:47 p.m.

Havn't liked RR from the start and his defense is the worst I have ever seen. While I hate the thought of watching our team go down the tubes for another 2 years, I believe he must be given a full 4 years to prove himself before letting him go. If we blow him out after just 2 years who would want to come here to coach? My first choice for next head coach would be Jim Harbaugh.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 11:38 a.m.

Fair or not, Bill Martin's legacy, no matter how much he's done to secure the athletic department's finances, upgrade facilities, etc, will be overseeing the football program during the last few years of the Carr regime when the program drifted toward mediocrity (made painfully obvious by the way M has been outcoached, outclassed, outplayed by OSU during the Tressel years)and the hiring of RichRod, who did not evolve but blew up a solid, if admittedly stale, program. Now what? I hope Prez Coleman has the insight and wisdom to bring in a new athletic director who has the talent and guts to clear away the RR-created rubble and find someone who can win, and win with integrity and class. Seems to me RR is lacking on all three counts.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 10:55 a.m.

goblueinNE_PA, I like your coaching list...I hadn't even thought of Patterson from TCU. I'd actually take him over the Boise coach. Again, I think RR has 3 games to prove he belongs. If he proves it, so be it. If not, let's revisit that list.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 10:47 a.m.

I wanted Carr gone too, but I'm sick and tired of this myth that there was no talent on that Michigan team when the idiot coach arrived. First, on defense, we had what, 9 of 11 returning starters. The defense wasn't great the year before, but that was an experience bunch of kids. On offense, we would have had 4 returning O linemen with starting experience. Everyone remembers Boren because he went to OSU, but they forget we had another kid quit (Cuillar??) even though he had eligibility left. Minor and Brown were back, Matthews, Clemons, and Savoy outside, Butler at TE, and we'd have had a starter at QB in Mallet. That is hardly the line up of a team w/o talent. Were we thin? Maybe, but we became swiss cheese after the idiot showed up and started running kids out of town. I'm counting on NCAA sanctions to terminate the idiot. Martin's too stupid to do it on his own. He'll need something to force him to get rid of the idiot. My choices for a replacement, in order: Brian Kelly - Cincinnati Chris Pedersen - BSU Gary Patterson - TCU Les Miles - LSU I will give the idiot credit for one thing. He's given me back my Saturdays. I used to dedicate Saturdays in the fall to college football. I no longer feel compelled to do that. I've watched my last game of the season. I may catch bits and pieces, but nothing more.

Jello Biafra

Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 10:37 a.m.

tmsharf--say what you want, but don't dog on the helmet. Best helmet in all of football, anywhere. You're just jealous.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 9:55 a.m.

If you hold tickets to next Saturdays game. DO NOT SHOW UP! Empty seats are the only wat to make a change. BOYCOTT UM FOOTBALL


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 9:49 a.m.

michfan3750, The complete mental meltdowns are coaching, too. You can't simply keep switiching D-coordinators EVERY year, either. The D melted under Shafer, and now the D melts under Robinson. The offense and special teams also mentally melt when things get tough. Who's the one constant over these two years of mental melting? Rodriguez. He's tight, he panics, and the team follows suit. Just ask WVU fans...they actually told us this before RR ever coached a game here. You can give RR all the time you want to get in the players that he needs (because he can't coach up what he's got), and that won't change the fact that if things aren't going right, he'll melt. RR, imo, will never win a national championship anywhere because he's not mentally tough enough. Schemes aren't enough. Coaching requires leadership.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 9:12 a.m.

You can't flip coaches every year or two.. Rebuilding a program that was ignored for years has finally taken its toll. A couple of late game heroics put Tate on an egotistical pedestal, and since then he has shown exactly what he is.. a FRESHMAN.. a deer in the headlights freshman with fast feet and no discipline.. Yes, he and Dennard are a work in progress.. I don;t hear anyone aching to see Mr Sheridan come in from the alst regime.. Does RR cause Tate to fumble, throw interceptions or complain about the cold and mishandle the ball? Did RR force the safety last week? The game is a big quicker in the Big 10 than the Friday night lights game.. and yes, it will tae a full 4 years to have RRs guys and eliminate the staffing excuses. Don;t be surprised to see another couple of QBs come in this years class to give some competition to Tate and Dennard. On the other side of the ball.. coaching deficiencies are very apparent.. start with the pass defense.. playing 12 or 13 yards off the receiver is a coaching decision.. while that might be a result of a lack of cornerbacks.. but thats what they make zone defensive schemes for.. arent there any safeties on the team either? Let's have some contact at the line of scrimmage and make the opponents receivers think about getting hit and not about how they might make a guranteed 7 yard gain into a big time one... If there's a sacrificial lamb on the coaching staff, it will be Greg Robinson.. The schemes and the arm tackling are coaching.. or alck there of.. time for him to continue his journey back west


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 9:07 a.m.

macabre, Those coaching records say it all. I hope to see that post throughout the week.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 8:56 a.m.

This team will be worse next year, with the loss of their only good defensive player, and the two stud running backs who have taken every meaningful snap. RR will be fired if UM hires an AD with a brain.

Homeland Conspiracy

Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 8:28 a.m.

Sports fandom feeds a primitive human need to belong to a whole larger than the self. Marx was wrong: The opiate of the masses isnt religion, but spectator sports. For many, sports spectatorship taps a primordial human instinct for belonging, much as militaristic nationalism does. It indulges the illusion of being part of something larger than ourselves and thus nurtured, understood, accepted, enlarged, empowered, gratified, protected. In the wave-generating arena crowd, Barash adds, one becomes part of a great beckoning, grunting, yet smoothly functioning, and, presumably, security-generating Beast. And for those involved, it apparently feels good to be thus devoured whole and to live in its belly.

Man in the Mirror

Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 7:26 a.m.

Where are all those IN RICH ROD WE TRUST fans? I would like to hear from you?

Man in the Mirror

Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 7:23 a.m.

Illinois was booed on their way into the locker room for being down by two field goals. They came out with a vengence and destroyed Michigan. Michigan is a poorly coached team, period. Those who left....Clemons, Threet, McGuffie knew they would not be champions if they stayed. They drank the RR kool-aid the first year and seen that RR was a liar and not above board, so they got out while they still were marketable. You RR fans talked bad on them and wished them good riddance. There is talent on that team, it's not coached to it's level and those who stayed who are seniors and juniors now will have a hard time (exception Brandon Graham) going to the next level. Those who left did so because they wanted to be "COACHED" to the next level and not because they did not love Michigan football and it's fans or because they were bitter for lack of playing time bcause they were Carr recruits and RR bought in his own midgets to replace them. Kudos to all who left this sinking ship.

Fred Hicks

Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 6:51 a.m.

Let's put the blame where it belongs --- Bill Martin. First he screwed up getting Les Miles, then to bail himself out he enticed RR from West Virginia, a coach who had absolutely NO understanding of Michigan football. What a mess! Good riddance to Martin and I hope RR and his coaching staff of cronies are not far behind --- it will be an expensive severance. The team is poorly coached, its' morale is entirely shot, and what is worse the recruiting program is in shambles. And Madame President it happened on your watch. You allowed yourself to be used by Bill Martin. Under a new coach and staff it will be a decade before Michigan football will return to the top tier of Big Ten teams. As long as RR is in Ann Arbor we can expect to be in the bottom half of Big Ten teams. In my 50 years of following and supporting Michigan football, this is the absolute worse. Bo must be turning over in his grave. But above all else don't blame the players --- they have no leadership from the coaches. What a mess! Dr Fred W. Hicks III


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 6:27 a.m.

Upon further review, UM still sucks! And, like TM noted, the helmets are horribly ugly.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 6:16 a.m.

Questions and Answers: what "coach" starts a season saying he has 3(THREE) starting qbs?r.r. what coach runs a shotgun formation on 4th and inches? r.r. what coach dismantles the most storied program in college football history? r.r. what coach wears his arch-rivals colors on his own sideline?? r.r. Ban The Wristband! Go Blue! v

Chris Goodman

Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 6:08 a.m.

I would only conclude from this game, that the senior class from Coach Carr is failing, mostly because they left or were kicked out. As a result the defense is impotent and not prepared for big games. Look at the analysis at, and you will see that any coach would be in a rebuilding situation for the next two years. Anyone who feels that any coach has the material for top level competition. Anyone saying otherwise is guilty of substance abuse. The current michigan team is also facing a double negative situation, where its home press is more self destructive than the opponent press. Between the DFP and DN lobbing journalistic grenades, everyone on the team is on the defensive. As for the offense, they need to finish rebulding the offensive line, build confidence in the young quarterbacks, and base their assessments of their offense against potent defenses. Practicing against the current defense can be deceptive, if the defense is impotent.

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : 12:04 a.m.

Conference Wins by Coach, Career: 1. Bo Schembechler - 143 2. Lloyd Carr - 81 3. Bennie Oosterbaan - 44 4(t). Fielding Yost - 42 4(t). Fritz Crisler - 42 6. Bump Elliott - 33 7. Gary Moeller - 30 8. Harry Kipke - 27 9. Gustave Ferbert - 6 10. Elton Wieman - 5 11. George Little - 4 12(t). Langdon Lea - 3 12(t). Rich Rodriguez - 3 14. William Ward - 2 Conference Losses by Coach, Career: 1. Bump Elliott - 34 2. Bo Schembechler - 24 3(t). Bennie Oosterbaan - 23 3(t). Lloyd Carr - 23 5. Harry Kipke - 21 6. Fritz Crisler - 11 7(t). Fielding Yost - 10 7(t). Rich Rodriguez - 10 9. Gary Moeller - 8 10. Elton Wieman - 5 11-13 (t). Ferbert, Lea, Little - 2 14. William Ward - 1 Here's another one... Consecutive losses in Big Ten play, career. Bo Schembechler - 3 (Ohio State 1974-1975, Ohio State 1981-1982, Iowa 1984-1985). Rich Rodriguez - 3 (Michigan State 2008-2009, Penn State 2008-2009, Illinois 2008-2009). And Ohio State and Purdue will add to it.


Sun, Nov 1, 2009 : midnight

RR has lost this team and his support with the fan base continues to erode. Hiring this guy was a huge mistake. He and hsi entire coaching staff need to at the end of the season. Bring in Brian kelly before somebody else gets him!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 11:09 p.m.

MIchigan will forgiver many sins by footbal players and coaches. Losing is one of the most unforgivable sins. Rolling over an playing dead is beyond the pale. Rich-Rod doesn't know it yet but he's toast.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 10:20 p.m.

What a pathetic showing! Please, let RR leave now so that the rebuilding can begin with the talernated freshmen who deserve better leadership. RR, take the defensive coodinator with you, now!!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 10:17 p.m.

In my mind, six wins and a bowl doesn't even cut it anymore. Short of upsetting OSU, this season is a monumental disappointment. We've already seen that this team has the skill to beat a pretty good ND team, showing that talent can't be the primary undoing of this team that some fans make it out to be. Since the ND game, they have regressed in ALL areas. Coaching is to blame. Beating Purdue to sneak into a bowl doesn't show progress from the beginning of the year. If RR truly wants to silence his critics and show that he is moving the program in the right direction, he's got to rally the troops and get them to fight hard the last three games...and win. If they roll over and die, getting blown out by Wisconsin and OSU...he's digging his own grave. It's on him. Go51blue says give him a chance. I say the last three games of the season are that very chance. Come on, RR...get the team behind you and PROVE that you belong as Michigan's coach. I honestly don't think he can do it, but he's still got that chance.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:50 p.m.

What happen to your Heisman wiener. I guess all the talk is just talk. Looooooosers.

Jon Saalberg

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:14 p.m.

If nothing else, RR will be gone by the end of next year if he doesn't turn things around in 2010, as UM will need to avoid the embarrassment of empty fat cat boxes after blowing a quarter billion dollars on a football stadium, along with the commensurate drop in alumni donations.

university brat

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:12 p.m.

Nothing but controversy, even surrounding his appointment, has followed RR. No previous Michigan coach has been so tainted. "They way a team plays is a reflection of it's coach" (paraphrasing William D. Revelli). Haven't liked RR from the beginning. There is no joy in Mudville tonight.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:11 p.m.

... this team is prepared for the first "turbo-drive", only. 99.9% of the run plays are from shotgun formation... and it ain't even snowing...yet. c'mon, Ban The Wristband! Go Blue! v


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:05 p.m.

I go to Illinois State and just to let all of you know, we scored more points against U of I than you guys did. You should be embarrassed. By the way, those helmets are disgusting to look at. Buckeyes win big in Ann Arbor this year.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:05 p.m.

Please explain the "red wristband" What is that all about??


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:04 p.m.

Rich rod sucks when was the last time you saw a Reciver get a 100 yard Game we only do screen plays & short passes I hate him so Much I never seen Michigan Passing game suck this Bad. he need to be Relived of his Job ASAP. we need a real head coach


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 9:02 p.m.

I thought Michigan was a good academic school? These kids talk like they didn't make it through high school. "We was the better team today" and "We got to stop the snowball"


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:59 p.m.

We need to focus on finding players with a defensive mindset to play defense. I don't care what their athletic ability is if they don't relish hitting. What we lack on defense is enough guys who want to take someone's head off. Certainly a complicated schema can make guys tentative but we are too far in the season for that to still be a problem. Actually against Iowa we did hit, fill the hole, drill the Iowa fullback, etc.. but prior to and since the Iowa game we play soft and tentative on defense. Screw the offense, we need a defensive mindset first or we'll nevery win. For teams to run the ball on us all they need to do is double Martin or whoever at the point of attach and it's a guaranteed 5yds. The pathetic LB play is amazing. The line play has not been great but the real problem is the play of the back 7. How this stuff happens I don't know but I do know that some other school in Michigan will likely be cleaning up on recruiting kids who are athletes that also want to to hit and play, Here we recruit athletes and try and make them into a football player. If they don't have the proper mindset by college they need to play a different sport. We need more athletes on this team who want to play football, not just any old sport. I don't care how much you practice, if you don't have it you just don't have it. Nothing can change that cold hard truth.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:56 p.m.

oh and by the way...get over it..Les Miles is never coming back!!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:52 p.m.

seriously, you are the same people that didnt want Rodriquez, will never accept him and will never give him a lets be honest here!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:49 p.m.

"Michigan Man"... RR not being one is not the problem. The fact that the team can't execute is. Did Florida or Bama need a home grown coach...? The whole "Michigan Man" crap is ridiculous and old fashioned, catch up eith the rest of college football!!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:44 p.m.

...excuse typos, but c'mon, Red wristbands? on Michigan sideline, He don't get It. Go Blue! v

Jon Saalberg

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:43 p.m.

If nothing else, RR will be gone by the end of next year if he doesn't turn things around in 2010, as UM will need to avoid the embarrassment of empty fat cat boxes after blowing a quarter billion dollars on a football stadium, along with the commensurate drop in alumni donations.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:42 p.m.

If RR doesn't have direct deposit I hope he backs up to the pay window. A man of character would voluntarily take a pay cut due to poor performance.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:42 p.m.

If Michigan isn't at least 9-3 next year then RR is gone. He is safe this year because Martin is leaving and a new AD will not pull the trigger right after moving into the position. I still think RR can get it going, but the play calling on offense (the stretch runs dont work with an average line and slow players... watch Oregon's speed!) and defense (please blitz more, you have no talent, your only chance is TOs) is beyond frustrating. RR please pull out all the stops vs the Buckeyes!!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:40 p.m.

ALL You Bozos don't see that RED wrsitband on King Bozos' wrist??...same dude that said his wvu gear would fit in his UM closet. he doesn't even know how to qb sneal on 1st and goal on the 1....I blame all you blind idiots... Ban The Wristband! v


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:30 p.m.

go50blue, Seriously? Beilein showed progress in his second year...RR hasn't. Beilein took over a program in disarray...RR didn't. If you feel the program is headed in the right direction, all power to you. Don't fault those who can see this dysfunction for what it is.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:26 p.m.

Wow..this is probably the same crowd that was calling for John Beleins head too. Now you all on the band wagon..what a bunch of fair weather should be ashamed!!!!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:25 p.m.

I've really been trying to find a silver lining this season, but today's game is a disaster for Michigan football. The failure to score at the Illinois goaline on 4 consecutive plays was effectively the end of our season barring a miracle. Where's the heart? Where's the toughness? Where's the determination? There isn't any. The defense played well up until the time the offense packed it in in the 3rd quarter. The offense has plain and simply regressed. That point can't be contested. This is on the coaches. Granted, players need to execute the plays, but Michigan is getting worse as a team. When you get blown out by the worst team in the Big Ten, it's time to face the music. I don't see this turning around for another 2 years, and that's too much damn time.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:21 p.m.

I am glad to see that the majority of the posters here, recognize the fact that these kids are just not coached well. They are all capable of being high caliber athletes; after watching the video of Stevie Brown, you can see they are lost!! These kids have busted their butts for a program that is now faulty. My heart goes out to these guys. They don't deserve most of the ridicule. Some can not be placed anywhere but on their shoulders; however, they are just misled.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 8:17 p.m.

Goodbye RR!! I can't say it was fun. This football team is laughable and Michigan fans are not going to put up with the crap that is being put on the field. The big house is going to be the little house because it is going to be half empty if RR stays around. This coaching staff is horrible!!! I am hoping that OSU destroys Michigan by 50 and maybe that will be the last straw to get RR out of here.

Just Blue

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:58 p.m.

There used to be a tradition built by team, caoches and fans for 40 years of a program that displayed dignity, determination and pride. Sadly, Mr. Martin had no clue that those qualities were needed in a coach to continue with the victories that followed those foundations. It is obvious that this staff also does not value preparation, as the lack of this, as well as the capitulations the last two weeks is the greatest indictment of their unfitness to lead our football team. I sure can not remember anything like this since following UM from Bo's days.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:56 p.m.

RichRod has already established a couple of very bad trends, first, the teams regresses as the season goes alone and second, he loses the team halfway through the season. And believe me, he's lost this team. I think it started during the Indiana game and was completely lost when he put DRob in against Iowa. I'll make two predictions: 1. This UM team will not win another game this season. 2. RichRod won't win another game as HC of Michigan. Quite frankly, I'm banking on the NCAA violations hitting and this leading to RR's termination, per the conditions in his contract. Anyone got Toney Clemons number? : )


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:50 p.m.

What a pathetic, pathetic mess...The M players were more concerned with huddling around the heaters during the game than paying attention...Bill Martin - Your bailing on a big mess!!! This is the WORST team in the history of Michigan Football, since the first kickoff vs. Racine in 1879...and we thought last year was BAD - this is WORSE...The Illini are pathetic, so where is Mighty Michigan...There is much, much more going on in AA than the piblic knows...RR must GO, and NOW!!! What an embarasment.....Big Blue - Welcome to the basement of the BIG 10.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:47 p.m.

This just in. Brandon Graham has foregone his final 3 games and entered the NFL draft. He deserves better than to have to play with such untalented players and coaches


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:45 p.m.

By the way, this is the fourth time in less than 2 seasons that Michigan has lost to a team with a losing record. I can count on one finger the amount of times the Wolverines lost to a team with a losing record in the 41 previous seasons.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:36 p.m.

DraderOHIO, Dude Ive been here all along, i even posted on the day OHIO lost to Purdue. Ive Posted probably 10-15 times since then. Great attempt to try and change the subject though, i mean the subject of michigan making Illinois look so great.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:32 p.m.

Snowflies, that was sarcasm...of course he didn't win a NC at WVU. He panicked and blew it against a weak Pitt team.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:29 p.m.

For the record, RR did not win a National Championship at WVU. The reason he was successful was because he had Pat White & Steve Slaton.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:26 p.m.

It was a very bad idea to play Deleware State. It really set us back and led to false optimism.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:24 p.m.

This is one of the worst coached teams I have ever seen. I supported RichRod and gave him a break for last year because it was the worst season in Michigan football history. Even this year I would have gave him a break...if our team played hard, were disciplined, and improved throughout the year. But this team looks terrible. They fall apart after something bad happens for them and our coaching staff lets them. Terrible coaches. Greg Robinson's D is more suspect than Schafer's D last season...which I didn't think was possible. What a disappointment. RichRod is just a nut screaming on the sidelines the whole wonder ihis team loses their poise. I want Ron English back.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:18 p.m.

The financial commitment UM made to RR also falls on Martin's lap. In addition, UM has also made quite a commitment to the new stadium and facilities. They are in a bit of a quandry...they can't afford to fire RR (supposedly), yet they certainly can't afford to have empty seats and angry boosters in the new stadium. This is a tough situation all the way around. However, if RR were to be fired, the fear of Martin making one last bone-headed hire is ever present.

Macabre Sunset

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:10 p.m.

I know my opinion isn't popular here, but this is a new low. Blown out by a team that had previously only beaten Illinois State, a I-AA program. Blown out. They rushed for more than twice as much yardage as they had against any team but Illinois State. RR is now 3-10 in conference play, and the team is worse than it was when he started. Under Carr? Ten of his 13 seasons, including the last two, he won nine or more games. RR is still looking for his ninth win with only three games left in his second season. It really is time to think about an alternative to RR.

Atlas Shrugged

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:09 p.m.

Michigan football sucks for another year, and I do not at all blame that on the players. Rich Rod is not a "Michigan Man" and never will be. Since Michigan has made such a financial commitment to Rodriguez, an abrupt termination of his contract probably won't happen. Michigan makes lots of mistakes, they just don't like to admit to them. Michigan is, after all, the leaders and best. Yeah, right. I have kids who graduated from MSU, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and even OSU. I root for them knowing the likelihood they'll beat the Wolverines. Haven't been too wrong too often.

j bredell

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:08 p.m.

The NCAA should imediately drop it investigation of the Michigan football team. Clearly, they did not practice at all, much less in excess of the allowable limit.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:06 p.m.

Nice to see OSUbeBetter is posting on this site again...After Purdue spanked Ohio State his been MIA..Michigan did lose to the worst team in the big 10 but Ohio state did a couple weeks ago.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:05 p.m.

I think Michigan has not gotten enough "PRACTICE". They need to "PRACTICE" more!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 7:03 p.m.

NO surprise that Tater is no where to be found on mlive or after that loss. What a fair weather Walmart wolverine!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:58 p.m.

This makes two straight weeks this team has given up. That inability to fight through adversity is a trend under RR. Just like last year, one bad play snowballs into another, and one defeat snowballs into another. There is no reason whatsoever that Michigan should have lost to Illinois. They were 1-6 (0-5) for a reason. They suck. They are a completely dysfunctional team run by a coach with no direction. The only more dysfunctional team in the Big Ten is Michigan. That, my friends, is a coaching issue.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:53 p.m.

wow we suck! Unexplainable no one plays with any passion, let alone actually committing to playing on the field. This is just pathetic!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:50 p.m.

Tate Forciers Tiny little "Ladies Isotoner size Small" hands strike again. If you hand a football to Tate, He will Drop it. Michigan Defense makes Illinois look good


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:44 p.m.

I'm just pissed off!!!... plain and simple. Our level of suckiness is mind boggling! Not even watchable.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:38 p.m.

Does nayone have Les Miles cell phone number? Send it to the AD.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:36 p.m.

Saalberg, I agree with you on Martin. He's the one who hired a coach who's philosophy was to tear down and completely start over rather than a coach who knew to build up and enhance what was already in place.

The Grinch

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:33 p.m.

I sure am glad that Michigan fans and alumni ran Lloyd Carr out of town. Losing football games and not going to bowl games is so much fun!!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:32 p.m.

On a positive note, at least we didn't lose by any MORE than we did last year. By the way, is RR the only coach who can make Ron Zook look great?

Jon Saalberg

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:31 p.m.

Worst Michigan team ever? Worst coach ever? This is setting UM football back YEARS. Who would want to play for a team like this? I don't understand people lauding Bill Martin. This is his disaster.

Duane Collicott

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:30 p.m.

"Michigan football team stumbles on offense, defense" And special teams. But other than offense, defense and special teams, they were great!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:16 p.m.

I want to see a replay of that 3rd period Michigan fumble. As the Illinois player was celebrating, he was walking into a down UM lineman... they were bumping for a second or two, then it looked like the UM lineman was throwing a punch into the Illini's players groin right as ABC cut away to show the coaches. Afterwords, the announcers were talking about an Illini player limping off the field. Replay please.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:15 p.m.

I am worried about our future. These are the smallest players I have ever seen. RR is in trouble. His staff is in trouble.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:13 p.m.

We are a "bad, bad" team and I hope the architect of this bad bad team Rich Rodriguez steps up and takes some responsibility. I think our non-bowl streak remains alive for a second year, or we get to a bowl and get beaten by Central Michigan and have a losing record for the second straight year (unlikely we will beat Wisconsin and OSU). Maybe the next AD will chose a different direction for Michigan.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:13 p.m.

This just in-MSU to pay for RR's contract extension! Even Sparty wasn't this bad under John L. LOL!


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:10 p.m.

To quote Bill Paxton from Aliens... "Game over, man! GAME OVER! What the **** are we going to do now?! What are we going to do?!" The first thing we are going to do is continue to root for Michigan. The second thing we are going to do is question the coaching abilities of RR and everyone else on his staff. This isn't about a lack of experience at certain positions, this is about simple fundamentals which seem non-existent on this team. Can't catch, run, tackle, cover receivers... Even the punt game stunk today. Without the basic fundamentals there is nothing. RR and staff are slowly digging their own grave. I am suddenly ambivalent on whether he stays or goes. Either way, win or lose, through thick and thin I will continue to root for the helmet. But the truth is there is nothing to like about RR and his team right now... except for that beautiful helmet.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:03 p.m.

Victors? No. Valiant? Also a no. This makes two straight this team has rolled over and died. That comes from the top.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6:02 p.m.

RR = Millen

John Galt

Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 6 p.m.

Hail to Victors, valiant.....oh, wait....


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 5:56 p.m.

What can we expect Michigan fans? Come on, lets be real. RR cannot be expected to coach the talent he has and make them better. He cannot be expected to win games now or any time in the near future. No, RR is being paid 2.5 million per to WAIT for the stars to cross and the perfect alignment of talent to land in Ann Arbor before we should legitimately put any expectations whatsoever on this great, world class coach. Its not his fault that our roster is not loaded from top to bottom with the perfect players for his scheme. Its Michigans fault. He took over our terribly downtrodden program and now he has no hope of beating anyone, be it a 3-9 MAC team or a 1-6 Big Ten team. We just need to wait patiently for, oh 5 or 6 years and then hope he gets the perfect players and wins a National Championship, just like he did at West Virginia when he had the perfect players. Further, if youre not happy with the direction RR is leading the Michigan program, than you should go cheer for Sparty. Also, if you are happy with the direction of the Michigan program, you should also go cheer for Sparty. After all, we look just like they did under John L.


Sat, Oct 31, 2009 : 5:52 p.m.

Cant beat the worsr team, you become the worse team!