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Posted on Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 6:44 p.m.

Michigan quarterback Tate Forcier ruled ineligible for Gator Bowl

By Pete Bigelow

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Quarterback Tate Forcier will not play in the Gator Bowl.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A season that started with one nasty surprise for Michigan quarterback Tate Forcier ended with another Thursday.

The sophomore quarterback was ruled ineligible for the Gator Bowl according to Michigan officials, who said in a written statement that Forcier “did not meet university standards and is ineligible to participate.”

Forcier left the team Thursday evening and boarded a flight back to Detroit at the Jacksonville International Airport.

After starting for Michigan last season as a true freshman, Forcier found out prior to the season opener that he had been relegated to the third string behind Denard Robinson and Devin Gardner.

But Forcier elevated himself to the backup spot, where he became a reliable contributor for the 2010 Wolverines. He appeared in eight games in relief of Robinson, and completed 54 of 84 passes for 597 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions.

His absence complicates matters for the Wolverines offense in Saturday’s game.

Although the oft-injured Robinson is healthy, his backup is now uncertain. Rodriguez said last Saturday that he hoped to seek a medical redshirt for Gardner, who has endured lower-back issues throughout the season.

But if Gardner played in the Gator Bowl, his opportunity to even make a case for a medical redshirt would be squashed.

Jack Kennedy is the only other quarterback on the team’s roster, and wide receiver Jeremy Gallon has played Mississippi State quarterback Chris Relf on the scout team during practice.

Pete Bigelow covers Michigan football for He can be reached at (734) 623-2556, via email at and followed on Twitter @PeterCBigelow.


J. A. Pieper

Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 6 p.m.

When we discuss the ACT score required for non athlete students at U of M, consider that athletes only need to score a 17. The AA News has in the past included this information when it has written up the new recruiting classes for football and basketball. All I can think is that when you recruit, maybe they should look at some kind of measure that might indicate effort to do well academically. Offering scholarships to students who score a 17, well, you get what you pay for, hence the problems for U of M football!

Elaine F. Owsley

Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 10:21 a.m.

Final exams came around December 22 this year. They probably didn't know for sure until the grades were in. What is really sad is that sports writers go nuts over these kids and act like they are the best thing to come along. When reality hits, it's a big fall for a freshman - especially if they've believed their press hype.


Sat, Jan 1, 2011 : 6:45 a.m.

banana11 Thanks for the info on the test scores of the schools. I wonder why OSU wasn't on the list unless OSU uses ACT rather than SAT. I don't know. It's good that UM scores are that high. I based my comments from reading other articles but I didn't find the source you used. I appreciate the info.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 8:23 p.m.

This is garbage, they wouldn't have flown him to Florida in the first place if he was academically ineligible. They would have known about this before he even left. He obviously did something in Florida that pissed off RR. He probably announced what school he is transferring to next year so he can get some fair treatment and proper playing time!


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 1:25 p.m.

@wvtroll: "In the end, poor planning by someone might cost UM a bowl game." I doubt that Tate's situation and not playing in the Gator Bowl will be the determining factor in a UM loss, if that's what happens tomorrow.

Macabre Sunset

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 1:19 p.m.

I have to agree with the troll from West Virginia. I don't particularly like the OSU bashing. It's a good school. It's a different model, because every graduate of an Ohio high school can gain admission. So the freshman core classes are unnecessarily brutal and are rather distracting for the good students. But it's also, like every Big Ten school, respected internationally. Putting down the entire school because some athletes have messed-up priorities is a standard that maybe only the Ivy League schools can withstand. We're just a boubacar or two away from the same standard ourselves. OSU is our hated rival. But, like the whole Bo and Woody thing, there's respect there, too.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 1:04 p.m.

"Ultimately, this is Tate's fault. The first thing I was taught by my parents, is that it is my responsibility to go to class, and study. Not theirs. Not my dog's. Not my friend's. Mine. Tate obviously didn't get something done. His fault." Well stated, Yelmonian! But the problem of entitlement goes beyond Tate and his parents. It's an attitude all too common amoung the major sports at ALL the major universities. (Yes, I'm including tOSU as well as UM.) The reality is from the first contact as a prospect in HS, these kids are told they're "special." Unfortunately, this is the system we have developed. Tate's study habits didn't start in Ann Arbor. They started when some Pee-Wee FB coach (or his parents) didn't bench him when his grades suffered because of FB. MANY years ago my elementary age kids took karate. The instuctor (who owned the karate school)made each student bring his report card to sessions. He then took 2-3 minutes and reviewed it, noting present performance against past grades. Sometimes he would send a child home. What's unappreciated is the fact that cost him real money by losing tuition for the session. We need more coaches like that.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:57 p.m.

You can't blame RR for Tate's academic failure, if this is what it really is. Tate's problem with grades is solely on Tate. What you might be able to blame RR for is not have a plan in place. He should have known the grade problems Tate was experiencing. If he didn't then you should wonder why. Do the instructors/professors/tutors at UM slack off on their responsibilities? But at any rate, RR should have prepared for a backup for DR, avoided the redshirt problem he's backed himself into, and foresaw what MIGHT have happened (as it appears it is playing out now). To constantly berate OSU for anything only shows the pettiness that exists on all these forums. I'm not sure whether the infraction the five players were guilty of is a school or NCAA violation. But they are being punished according to the penalty the rule states. UM should be optimistic about the next year since they have a chance to "better" OSU in the first five games of next season, whereas if they were to miss the bowl game, only four games would be played without the five players. Regardless, this is an OSU problem and UM has enough to worry about in their own house. In the end, poor planning by someone might cost UM a bowl game.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:42 p.m.

Jim N. Thanks, which one of you in the picture does the thinking and posting? I want to be councilled by the other one. (All in fun. And I did have you going, tangent or co-tangent.)


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:13 p.m.

Jim Harbaugh can barely remember a time when he wasn't in awe of Bo Schembechler. Maybe in the crib. But from he moment he could pronounce the name, there was a tingle that went with it. He first became aware of him when the Michigan team used to roll into Iowa -- where Jack Harbaugh was a coach -- and smear the Hawkeyes by 50 points. He became more aware when his dad was hired as an assistant by Schembechler and the family moved to Michigan. Bo would come over to his house to visit, and one time, he found Jim, then 10 years old, wrapped in a blanket watching TV. "What are you doing watching TV?" Schembechler growled. "Why aren't you doing something productive?" What could Harbaugh do? He grabbed a book and pretended to read. Tate could have used that kind of prodding, Go Tate, don't give up and keep working on your academics. Man, isn't Bo something?


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:12 p.m.

Not sure all this response on who's fault it is Tate or RR? Recently while watching the Maryland bowl game,where the HC was fired,the question was asked who the leading candidate for the HC at Maryland would be,and the answer was Rich Rod.. I think he knows what the outcome of DB decision will be,and is actively networking for a new position.. Good luck,Best wishes Rich.. Go Blue!! HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!! I'm out..


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:08 p.m.

Jim N.: How are you enjoying those magic mushrooms? Your analysis is absurd! Not having Tate on the sideline is a detriment, no matter how you cut it!


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:08 p.m.

Love? You wouldn't have thought so the time Schembechler called Harbaugh "the worst quarterback he'd had in 40 years," or when he threw him off the team in his sophomore year, or when he told him, as a freshman, he would "never play a down for Michigan in his life." You call that love? But then again.... Well, you'll see. "To me Bo was bigger than life." Jim Harbaugh Read this great 24 year old article at: Just imagine if Tater was coached by Bo.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 11:33 a.m.

Jim N. I didn't know thinking outside the box was an insult. No such message was intended and you have my word on it. Go Blue.

Jim Nazium

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 11:30 a.m.

Blu- you almost had it there buddy, but went off on a tangent again. I don't have the free time to counsel you today, maybe we could schedule an appointment next week. We can title our first session: How to read what somebody wrote and not twist it around and go off on a wacky tangent over and over again. It will be OKAY, try to have fun at the game and GO BLUE.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 11:27 a.m.

There is a little bit of blame to go around here. Ultimately, this is Tate's fault. The first thing I was taught by my parents, is that it is my responsibility to go to class, and study. Not theirs. Not my dog's. Not my friend's. Mine. Tate obviously didn't get something done. His fault. Tate's parents have created a sense of self-entitlement for Tate. If you don't agree with this, all you have to do is look at the family website, bragging about each of the kids, how great they are, and Tate's page where he posts everything bad written about him. A shrine to how great they are. It's over the top. Lastly, RR has some responsibility. I seem to recall rumors before the season began regarding Tate's academic issues. It doesn't take much for the coach (or football rep) to ask the professors for copies of grades throughout the term. I know Tater (the mad poster) likes to bash MSU... but if you look at Tom Izzo, he held Lucious back from a game or two last year, due to class issues. He got the point across that class is important. And for everyone that says a little extra practice time is not important, and why should RR get in trouble for this... one basic item... it puts that football is more important than the academics in some of the young kid's heads. There is blame to go around on this one. Tate let the team down big time, even though he is not a starter, in the system RR installed, a quality backup is needed at all times.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:57 a.m.

Jim N. Thanks for the primer. So, our passing QB, who only comes in when our running QB is hurt, won't be here so the running QB will have to pass more so he doesn't get hurt. Is that it? QED that will make the running QB better because he knows the passing QB is on the other side of the country, probably packing, so the running QB wont get injured. AND this will make the TEAM better by putting MORE pressure on them because they didn't have enough pressure already following the Wisconsin and OSU games! Will all this mean UM has found a kicking game or is losing the passing QB, who had one of the best punts this season, back up north going to help there too. As far as tomorrow is concerned I'll be AT the game, which is a sign of my "negative" outlook about Michigan football. Just like my son and I travelled to AA to watch the UMass game. (That was WAY closer than we thought it would be). So after going to and watching Michigan football since 1974, I think I may be entitiled, same as you, to voice my opinion. Will RR burn DG's redshirt tomorrow? And did he make a mistake by playing him for those few plays earlier in the year to teach TF a lesson? And how did that bit of COACHING work out for everybody?


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:56 a.m.

The one thing that is really surprising is that everyone only found out yesterday. That is not making much sense, if the semester ended 2 or 3 weeks ago. Most of the time you should be able to know your grades sooner than that, especially if the guy is your # 2 QB who sees alot of action.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:45 a.m.

orlando "tate is just someone who needs to man up and be responsible." I agree with you. Now let's use that same logic for RR... he needs to "man up" too and take responsibility for the things he is responsible for... after all, he is the HEAD coach. Things like NCAA violations, his overall losing record and his losing BT record in 3 years,... And oh by the way, RR is getting paid over $ 2.5 million per year for this responsibility & privilege. Or are you going to use different logic for RR than you are using for Tate?

Bubble world west

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:40 a.m.

the comedy that michigan football has become under rich rod is entertainingly sad. my reaction to this is laughter, followed by disbelief. next up jenn sterger gets text messages from the "rod"


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:39 a.m.

Bowl games make you ineligable for medical redshirts period no exceptions

Macabre Sunset

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:32 a.m.

The rules are clear about participation - Gardner's participation was entirely in the first half of the season, and he is below the limit for number of games. The question is whether he's a legitimate medical red-shirt. He was listed on the depth chart after the deadline, so the NCAA may rule that his injury didn't prevent participation. It may be difficult to find a doctor willing to support the claim (at least a practicing doctor - I'm sure there are plenty of fans with medical licenses who don't practice who are willing to support anything). And, of course, if Rodriguez lists Gardner as the backup in the bowl tomorrow, the NCAA could use that to deny the request. Rodriguez is probably getting fired on Monday, what does he care whether Gardner loses a year?

Jim Nazium

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:27 a.m.

@ blu-n-tpa My comment: Maybe with Tate at home DR will have to pass more and it will legitimately open up the spread and he'll have safe running room as the game progresses. With all the adversity this team is going through, maybe this added pressure of protecting DR will bring out the absolute best in them and this whole thing will be a Blessing in Disguise. What don't you understand here? With Tate Gone- The QB who we rely on more for the pass... get it? Denard- our Running QB, probably won't have as many Run Plays because our Passing QB is at home and won't be coming in if he gets hurt... Following me here? Opening up the field means Denard is Passing the ball so the D won't stack the line, ok, simple enough for ya? And with the Team Knowing the 2nd string QB isn't there to come in if Denard gets hurt, they play their Best game of the Season. If you want to define my comments as "Addition by Subtraction", go ahead, but don't insult me by saying I think "Outside the Box". If the box is the Negative Thinking Box, then yeah I prefer to think outside of That box. I said Cup half full on purpose, Look at all the upsets so far in this bowl season, have some faith in your team. Geesh!


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:24 a.m.

Maybe ann staff could research "medical redshirt" rules for us. It's my understanding that if a player participates in more than 30% of a team's games he does not qualify for a medical redshirt. If Gardner was in 4 games, that is 33%.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:16 a.m.

Maybe RR should ask TF if he promises to come back he will let him play that what integrity at OSU is all about.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:11 a.m.

Tate Forcier brought himself down without embarrassing the University of Michigan, the UM team or the UM fans. The tattooed "student athletes" on the OSU football team, who didn't have enough respect for OSU not to sell their awards at a dingy tattoo parlor, brought shame on themselves and the entire OSU institution. Say what you might about RR, but he took timely and decisive action. Such character is not evident in Tressel and AD Smith who spent all their time and energy trying to avoid suspending the players. Tressel and Smith can not comprehend that the integrity of a university is more important than winning a football game. Good luck to UM.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:10 a.m.

My goodness, one player is ruled academically ineligible and of course it's RichRod's fault... You guys make it sound like no player in the history of Michigan football has ever been ruled academically ineligible. I can feel the RR hate flowing. Get over it! Here's Tate's own take on his academics from a Free Press interview a few days ago: "I've never been the greatest student. My brothers were always the geniuses. I was always the kid who was street smart but not that smart classroom-wise. You really have to try to flunk out here. All you have to do is go to class, it's not that hard. I've always been an average student. I don't ever see myself being that smart of a student. I just feel like it's too much of a job being an athlete. It's too much of a job. You get some of these kids in engineering who are players on our team who have 4.0s, and I just look at them like, 'You must never sleep.' I feel like the work I have is a lot. I can only imagine what they have." Yep, must be RichRod's fault! As for comments like Dave Brandon must step in to preserve Devin Gardner's redshirt, all I have to say is wow! Is that what Michigan football has become? If Denard Robinson gets hurt, lets just forfeit the game because that's how we roll? If Robinson gets hurt lets just say screw all the hard work THE TEAM has put in this season so we an preserve the redshirt of one player? I hope Robinson stays healthy. I don't want to see DG lose his redshirt. However, I will not blame RichRod if he has to play DG. It's funny... some of you guys are all about the team, the team, the team, yet when it comes to doing what's best to help the team win against Mississippi State, you want to throw the team under the bus so DG doesn't lose his redshirt. Yeah, that's really about being about the team!


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 10:07 a.m.

OMG the team plane did not crash, one player was ruled ineligable, spare me with the fire RR no matter what posts. I read that a week ago RR saying he didn't know if there were going to be ineligablity issues yet and he was waiting to hear about them. It does seem a bit strange though a player to get sent home 2 days before the bowl I think that is the biggest question. You Harbaugh lovers kill me. What happens when he decides to go to SF 49ers? We should start a suicide hotline now before he announces. Go Blue


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 9:39 a.m.

This young man was blasted over talk radio for not attending more spring/summer practices when in fact he was trying to raise his g.p.a. Then his academic counselor put him in more classes than he needed "just in case" (per FREEP interview) which only gave him more work to do. It sounds like he could not put the time needed for academics with the time demands for football. It is too bad that federal laws about student privacy were not followed with the news about him not being eligible to play.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 9:37 a.m.

David Brandon MUST step in and make sure RR does not play Gardner and waste a red shirt. This is the last straw on RR. Come on, they had to know Tater wasn't gonna make the grades and were hoping for a lazy Prof to not turn a grade in. If there was doubt he should have never made the trip until he could prove he was eligible.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 9:23 a.m.

Is a coach responsible in making sure a player is eligible to play? I believe it is. A coach does everything in his power to make sure his players are eligible. If they are not, he looks bad, and his program looks bad. I do not think one player is representative of the entire program. I think the post showing the lack of academics across the board does and is a bigger issue than Tate doing something stupid or failing a class! Michigan football is measured by the excellence of its previous coaches and players on and off the field. There is a bar that is set and if the coach or player is under that bar he is typically gone. I think RR is starting to need a ladder to reach that bar. It is not one thing that is cutting his knees out it is a 3 year process of the following: Lossing games, horrible regressing defense, bad offense (this year was better except against top 25 teams early in games), horrible special teams, mass exodus of talent, NCAA violations, Law suits off the field where he is the defendent, massive buyouts for violating contracts, dropping academic standards, what appears to be an atmosphere of disillision, a massive drop off in strength and toughness, increase in penalties, one of the worst teams in turnover margin. I, for the life of me can not think of a single positive this coach has brought to michigan! Maybe his recruiting? but it is actually worse than previous coaches recruiting. The only positive is the single season record for QB rushing yards broke. So lets give RR credit for playing Denard. We have seen every bad record shattered by this coaching staff over the last three years. If it is not one thing with this guy it is another. He is not stable in anyway shape or form and you can see it with the way his team plays. RR lovers, step back from the program for a second and what do you see? A program that has dropped off in every major positive category significantly and risen in every bad category! In categories that win games michigan is near the bottom of all of them (TOP, Turnovers, Scoring offense was 21st so not bad, penalties, Total Defense)! RR lovers do you know who has a better Defense than michigan? Purdue, Colorado, Iowa State, Minnesota,. How about this, there are only 2 BCS qualifier conference teams that are worse and 11 from non-BCS qualifier conferences, Texas Tech and Washington State. I guess RR should be back for one more year, it only makes sense looking at the production of this team and coaching staff (lots of sarcasm)! Tate is a microcosm of the big picture and the state of the football program at michigan. Good Job winning the GLI Michigan with two of your best players being at world juniors!!! I wish I got it on TV.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 9:11 a.m.

Yes, everything is Rich Rods fault! Like everything is Obama's fault. Both stupid analogies. Rich Rod is the coach, Rich Rod is a ostensively faculty member, Rich Rod, or his delegate, should be on top of all the players (read students) behavior, both academically and programatically. Just like the rest (most) of the U of M faculty do. To not know that Tate was in grade trouble just shows a lack of responsibility and oversight the part of Rich Rod. To allow things to get to this late stage and have the kid unable to play is professional suicide, and shows a distinct lack of awareness. But there again this debacle is representative of Rich Rod's behavior and lack of awareness since his arrival in Ann Arbor. Oh, how I long for Rich Rod's dismissal and for Harbaugh to show up!

Sean T.

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 9:06 a.m.

I've always been a fan of Tate and I believe his eligibility falls squarely on his houlders. He should make up his credits and transfer immediately maybe to Sand Diego State where he should feel right at home.

Sean T.

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 9:02 a.m.

Rockettrg, I agree with you and respect your post.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 9 a.m.

I agree that Tate has really let the team down on this one. I'm pretty sure he had access to tutors and other resources in those classes where he needed help. Did he avail himself of those opportunities? My sons attend college and even they, who are not scholarship athletes, have access to tutors in those classes where they need help. Some of the tutors are provided at no charge while others charge a small fee for more personalized tutoring. I wonder if Tate took advantage of this or did he think he was immune from being ruled ineligible because he a was high-profile athlete? I also think the U-M football department should have someone keeping an eye on players' grades so they can help remind the athletes of the help that is available.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 8:50 a.m.

Maybe Michigan should have lowered their standards to the level of the NCAA for bowl games!


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 8:44 a.m.

gas prices are sky high, thats richrods fault to........tate is just someone who needs to man up and be responsible, think back to the very first game, he was pouting on the sidelines...unemployment is also sky high, thats richrods fault too...


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 8:41 a.m.

"you guys have to be kidding me. It's RR fault that the underachiever contiunes to underachive. " I do not blame him for the grades, I DO blame him for recruiting the kid. If you recruit slackers, and through two years he has been a slacker, and in the end the kid turns out to be a slacker, who is that on? If RR were monitoring grades a SMART move would be to say. Tate, no practice or playing time for you. Spend your time on what you are the UM for. IF and only IF your grades are acceptable will you play or practice. The football team has academic advisors who should be on top of this each and every day. When Bo was around, if a player missed class, he was not playing, NO MATTER WHO HE WAS. RR is more concerned with wins and losses than the players. He is selfish that way. That is fine for the pros. As for the person who rolled out a SI article about Andy Katzenmoyer, are you kidding me? He has not been at OSU since 1999. There are plenty of reasons to rip into OSU, but things from the 90's? Not so much


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 8:38 a.m.

@Jim N. So you are saying it takes a player leaving for the QB to "open up" and "pass more" and this will "bring out the absolute best" of the team. So this is an example of "addition by subtraction". Great, send the special teams COACH home too. You may be on to something here. It didn't work when RR left the punter home vs OSU but if we send the ST COACH back early to start packing, it certainly can't hurt. Keep up the good thinking. I like the "outside" the box approach.

Jim Nazium

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 7:36 a.m.

So sad and funny in a sick way how a tidbit of information comes out and the masses go crazy with speculation. Was it in Fact academic ineligibility or something else? Was the news withheld until the 11th hour on purpose by anti-RR people? Was DB behind it because he already made up his mind and if Michigan wins big and looks great on the field it makes his decision less popular? Is there evidence of water on Mars? Was Popeye an OSU grad in English? My cup stays half-full and I hope Blue wins and better days are coming with or without a new Head Coach. Maybe with Tate at home DR will have to pass more and it will legitimately open up the spread and he'll have safe running room as the game progresses. With all the adversity this team is going through, maybe this added pressure of protecting DR will bring out the absolute best in them and this whole thing will be a Blessing in Disguise. UM 41 MSU 31 GO BLUE!!!


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 7:34 a.m.

@rockettrg: Someone has actually calculated test scores for scholarship football players at 54 public universities. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Michigan has the third highest average SAT score out of the 54 public universities surveyed with an average score of 997. Michigan State is actually listed on the "bottom ten" list with an average score of 917. I did not see the OSU score, but I am willing to assume that it is not as high as Michigan's. For non-athletes, UM's middle 50% ACT score is listed as 28-32, OSU 25-30, and MSU 23-28 according to each school's admission website.

Davood Rejali

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 6:48 a.m.

"On the whole this is about a kid who got a big head, partied a little too much, got behind in school, somehow got lost in the cracks of the football factory..." Didn't know Tate had a chaperone...or, a stalker?


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 6:37 a.m.

The football players have access to so many resources that this boogles the mind. Study table, tutors, the learning center, personal guidance councelors, and more. He said in the other story he was behind and was signed up for 16 hours, hoping to finish 14, to remain eligible. I did that a couple of times to try to get ahead and the demands of the extra class work really can hurt all your classes. 12 hours is considered full time and that doesn't take in all the extra studing a QB has to do weekly as game prep. I thought he was in trouble when he mentioned he was going to be classified a Junior in school as of the first of the year and he needed to have successfully complete enough hours to meet that milestone. In the "real world" of college football you want to take extra course work in the spring and maybe something in the summer but taking 16 hours in the fall, that's just asking for trouble. As much as this is mostly Tate's problem there was that flareup over him missing work outs last summer. He mentioned in the article that he was trying to catch up in the classroom which cause him to miss voluntary time with the team. That got him called out by Troy W, amoung others. Someone on the coaching staff, the position coach or someone else, should have been on top of that right then. On the whole this is about a kid who got a big head, partied a little too much, got behind in school, somehow got lost in the cracks of the football factory, was mishandled (on and off the field) by those who DID accept responsibility for him at Michigan. I don't know if TF will be able to climb out of this hole at UM. He might not even want to after this fall. This might be the last straw in his run to wear the winged helmet.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 2:42 a.m.

Tate has to take a lot of the blame himself. Football staff should have known it would be close for Tate when he got his final grades. This is common in all D1 programs. It will happen again in the future. Football players' academic courses are no more difficult than the courses offered at MSU and OSU. UM offers similar rinky-dink courses to their football and basketball players. This has all been covered recently in the past two years. Some of you are telling Tate he needs to 'man up', well, some of you saying that also need to man up and stop pretending the academic rigor of UM classes is greater than that at OSU and MSU. IT IS NOT! I thought this myth had died with the series done by the Freep. Either pay attention or you'll have to go sit at the kiddies' table. Northwestern is the only school in the Big 10 that is close to providing their players a challenging academic requirement. Your comments about Katzenmoyer are true and other OSU athletes took similar courses from the 1960s through 2000. But so did most major colleges, INCLUDING MICHIGAN, do the same charade. It is undeniable so maybe less focus on MSU and OSU would be better unless you can make a truthful case about UM being better at something related to football and football academics. Someone should total the ACT scores of Michigan football team vs MSU football team vs OSU football team - scholarship players only and then including the non-scholly players too. It's no harder for a football player to be admitted to Michigan than it is for a player to be admitted to OSU. Many of you don't want to believe that but it is true. Northwestern is the elite football team in regard to academics with the other eleven teams behind. Stop blowing about Michigan academics as it relates to the football jocks. Harbaugh has addressed this and so has the Freep. You can't ignore these and speak credibly about the football players academic courses being more rigorous than at other Big 10 universities. To objective people, you, yourselves look like idiots. The average ACT score for incoming freshmen at OSU is above 27, maybe closer to 28. What is the average ACT score for freshmen entering UM? And whatever it is, is still not relevant to the academics of the football players. RR has some fault since he's coach but you have to put the majority of the fault on Tate. He knew what he had to do, had the support system to help him get it done, but didn't work hard enough to make it happen. I can't kick CoachRod about this one too hard. Go Blue in Gator World.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 1:53 a.m.

Hmmm, looks like we might have some "chronic" absenteism here. Looks lioke it was all smoke and mirrors during the regualr season. Get your head right, future employers, clients and customers are watching.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 1:18 a.m.

Harbaugh will come in and clean house and get michigan back on top in every catagory. Yes, RR is part to blame cause he should keep track of how his players are doing in the classroom. Just shows how RR can't coach every aspect of the game. LCarr did a fine job in that area.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 1:16 a.m.

Rofl? I love how people say "RR has lost control of the team" because ONE player lets his grades dip. One player who, by the way, has a HISTORY of slacking off (and losing his starting position because of it).


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 1:09 a.m.

Harbaugh will come in and clean house and get michigan back on top in every catagory. Yes, RR is part to blame cause he should keep track of how his players are doing in the classroom. Just shows how RR can't coach every aspect of the game. LCarr did a fine job in that area.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:41 a.m.

Well, this is Michigan's program and problem, so comparing to OSU is folly, BUT having said that, what a joke that punishment is. If they are guilty, they are guilty and suspension should strt now.

Basic Bob

Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:14 a.m.

If Tate Forcier went to OSU he would still fail too many classes to be eligible. Then again, he would have to make the team. Not a sure bet.


Fri, Dec 31, 2010 : 12:11 a.m.

There seem to be so many aspects of this team that appear to be disfuncional. I have seen nothing like this at Michigan in my lifetime (may decades). Who is to blame if not the head coach? Pay attention DB.

Charley Sullivan

Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 11:55 p.m.

Northwestern 31 players Ohio State (22) Wisconsin (22) Indiana (22) Penn State (19) Iowa (16) Minnesota (15) Purdue (14) Michigan State (13) Michigan (8) Illinois (7) Michigan State7-1 Ohio State7-1 Wisconsin7-1 Iowa 4-4 Illinois4-4 Penn State4-4 Michigan3-5 Northwestern3-5 Purdue 2-6 Minnesota2-6 Indiana 1-7 Funny how with a few outliers, in general, the better your team does academically, the better it does athletically. It is sad that Michigan can only have 8 players with a 3.0 or better, when there are whole teams on other sports which have a team GPA over 3.0. Teams that take care of business in the classroom can take care of business on the field, in the pool, etc. Teams that can't take care of their academic business rarely do well in my experience. Success in both requires discipline and commitment, and if you don't have it one place, you're not likely to have it in another.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 11:52 p.m.

If he was on Ohio state they would just penalize him next year.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 11:35 p.m.

Winning the Gator Bowl just got a whole lot tougher as a result of Tate's ineligibility. I don't believe DRob played an entire game all season (IU maybe?). This offense is predicated on the QB taking shots and we're playing an SEC defense. Before the 2nd quarter is over, DRob will need to take at least one play off due to taking a hard shot. Pretty much guaranteed. That will definitely lead to an interesting decision, but I'd bet good money that Devin will be the one RichRod turns to, though it probably wouldn't make a difference if it is Kennedy. W/O DRob or Tate, this team is dead offensively. Oh, and RichRod does shoulder some of the blame. When these kids are turned over to these coaches, they take responsibility for them. All aspects of their lives. Yes, Tate is a dunderhead, both literally and figuratively, but RR's staff should have known where this was heading and been working to help him out, tutoring, whatever it takes with in the rules. My gut says, RichRod pushed the entire team like crazy during those bowl practices and made it very clear that football was first and foremost. Got to save that job, don't you know. Well, we'll see how Tate does in the spring game with the new coaching staff. Should be interesting how this plays out. Only 2 more days till the long, 3 year, nightmare is over! Go Blue! You lift me up!!


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 11:19 p.m.

Sally, RR did say that there were "a few student athletes" that were borderline, but that he thought they would all be okay. Grades don't come out right away. Aids have to grade tests, compute scores, etc...So the coaching staff knew he was straddling the line and probably told him to crack the books and study, but he chose not too. Pretty simple really. He needed a good grade on his final and probably bombed it!


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 11:03 p.m.

See you Tate and thanks for the excitement in 2009. Rich Rod had it in for him in the beginning of this season. Michigan please define what "did not meet University standards" means. Your fans would like to know. Much too ambiguous.........


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 10:55 p.m.

Oh Tate- seriously, this boy has to get ok grades, and he gets to be a part of the team. Simple. There is tons of support for athletes. He gets tuition paid and the nice perks of being part of the team. Many reasons this might have happened this late- if Tate pulled the "I am so cool" and decided that school was just not that important well, who know if he completed work that needed to be done by semesters end. We don't need to know, but what we do know is that they are following the rules, even to the possible detriment of the team. Hard decision for RR- he is truly damned if he does and damned if he doesn't. No matter what, the U is a great place, and rules are (thankfully) being followed. I wonder if this may have been more of the issue with Tate at the beginning of the season? Seems as if the students and their privacy is indeed coming first... We don't really need to know, but It is true- they are still kids and kids do screw up. Good luck to everyone on Gator day. Stay safe Denard! RR I sure hope your team wins! I cant help but wonder if this is a way to really squeeze the man.... No matter, I am a fan of our boys always. Go Blue!


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 10:54 p.m.

Just one more reason Rich Rod should be fired.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 10:39 p.m.

@Matt: If he just once sacked up and said, "I'm the head coach and this is all on me." I'd cut him some slack. But he never has, not once. And where did you read that RR sent the kid home? I didn't read that anywhere. I didn't see any sort of quote or attribution from RR at all. No, he can't make the plays himself, or take the kid's tests, but that does not mean he can abdicate responsibility for those things.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 10:32 p.m.

Since it looks like it's academics based on the article:"Tate Forcier ineligible for Gator Bowl," (Rittenberg), I still question why it took so long for Tate to find this out. Since Tate knew he was a "struggling" student, as he admitted Monday ("Forcier told the Detroit Free Press on Monday that he has struggled academically") then he should have made sure he was eligible BEFORE boarding a plane to Jacksonville this past weekend. If his final grades weren't posted online before he left, he should have been in contact with the profs in question to make sure he was passing the necessary credits BEFORE leaving for Jax. This is called taking responsibility for your coursework and outcomes, especially when you are struggling academically. He knew what the consequences were for not passing the credits he needed, so going to Jax and then finding out he was academically ineligible, is irresponsible on his part.

obama from kenya

Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 10:24 p.m.

We don't ask you to be the "greatest student" Tate, only to keep yourself eligible.

obama from kenya

Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 10:16 p.m.

On Yahoo Sports, Larry Lage has an article reporting this story. In it, he quotes Forcier as saying something to the effect he's never been book smart, but more street smart. Good to know the University's academic standards mean a lot. I know they are ATHLETE-students, however, someone should tell them to keep quiet with regard to how lacking they are in academic areas. Hopefully Harbaugh shows up soon to hold the players to a slightly higher standard.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 10:13 p.m.

amzack: Plenty of other posters have thrown around various possibilities and speculation on this thread. Why don't you dump on them?


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 10:06 p.m.

@Born: How can you POSSIBLY blame a coach for a student's grades? My dad wasn't responsible for my poor performance on the occasional exam, so why would you put this on RR? He's not a dictator, he's a COACH, and he cannot gloss over a 19 year-old's personal responsibility to succeed in the classroom. If anything, RR's decision to send him home speaks a lot more for his willingness to go by the book on these things and avoid any sense of impropriety. Cut the guy some slack at least once in a while, okay?


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:56 p.m.

"Yup, I figured you all would put this on RR. In other news, RR is also being blamed for the recent tension on the Korean Peninsula." No, because RR is not being paid millions/year to be the head coach of the Korean Peninsula. He is, however, the head coach of and the person ultimately responsible for all aspects of the Michigan football program. Sadly, he doesn't seem to understand this and many of are long since sick of him deflecting said responsibility onto other people and circumstances. Meanwhile, the U of M Icers, and their long-time head coach Red Berenson have just won the Great Lakes Invitational Tournament. Way to go Michigan Icers!


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:38 p.m.

Yup, I figured you all would put this on RR. In other news, RR is also being blamed for the recent tension on the Korean Peninsula.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:35 p.m.

At least he did not go out and sell things to get a tattoo.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:34 p.m.

Sallyxyz: Grades aren't posted for every class the day after the semester ends. Instead of throwing out wild ideas with no evidence or data to support your thinking, go back to sleep.

Tex Treeder

Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:31 p.m.

If only RR could be ruled ineligible.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:28 p.m.

Tater tot, Stop posting in here and hit the books or consider transferring to OSU asap or get a new nickname. Glory days are back soon. All hail King Harbaugh.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:27 p.m.

Why did it take them this looooong to find something out. How can the Guy find time to study, when he was called to the field most of the time? And why when he helped the team to get tooooo a bowl game? Sucks for Michigan now!!!!!


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:22 p.m.

Tater wrote "Unlike other schools (cough, cough, MSU, OSU) where this would be "tabled" until after the game, RR took swift, decisive action." Not true in 2007 5 Michigan State Players where not allowed to play in a bowl because of academic issues -> This occurred at the peak of Michigan's "Independent study scandal" where Michigan athletes, who were in danger of failing too many credits, were allowed to enroll, very late in the term, to make up the credits. Sometimes the independent study appeared to consist of only emails sent to the professor... Today it appears that UofM is being compliant (both to the letter and intent)


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:19 p.m.

So, why did Tate get all the way to Jacksonville and 2 days before the bowl game before this emerged??? I doubt it is academics. That would be straightforward, not a "secret," and should have been apparent long before this. The semester ended 2 weeks ago. This must be related to some other violation, which might have happened in Jax. Why isn't RR coming forward to talk about this? Well, this will be one more excuse for RR if they lose the game on Saturday.

Macabre Sunset

Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:07 p.m.

We can blame the coach for a lot of things, and he richly deserves firing. But this is entirely on Tate.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 9:02 p.m.

The Free Press states it is an academic issue.. "Michigan sophomore quarterback Tate Forcier is academically ineligible to play in the Gator Bowl on Saturday against Mississippi State, a source told The Detroit News on Thursday." That is sad. If RR knew and could not get Tate to Man up and do the work then Tate is the problem and has let his team down. Not a sign of a true Michigan football player. Looks like Tate may need to rethink his commitment to this team. There are plenty of other schools with less rigorous standards. We should wish him well at a new school.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:50 p.m.

If Tate is in academic trouble one wold believe RR's assistants would have been informed early on. I suspect it may be something else. If is really academic then RR should be all over his assistants to find out why they did not know. In any case, as has been stated in many other posts, RR needs to take the blame.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:50 p.m.

RR has lost control of the team. If there wasn't already enough to send him packing, this should do it. Maybe instead of a wingless helmet he can make Forcier practice in a dunce cap. That ought to really motivate a kid. RR and his teams have been little more than a constant source of bad news.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:47 p.m.

chapmaja... this is from an article on A person familiar with the ruling told The AP that Forcier is academically ineligible for the game against against No. 21 Mississippi State. Forcier told the Detroit Free Press on Monday that he has struggled academically. "I've never been the greatest student," Forcier told the newspaper. "I was always the kid who was street smart but not that smart classroom-wise." Forcier told the newspaper that he needed to pass 14 credits this semester to remain eligible and took 16 credits "just in case I didn't do well in another class."


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:47 p.m.

It should be interesting to see what RR does if DRob gets hurt. I honestly don't foresee it, since he's had over a month to recover, but it's still a possibility. RR is, conceivably, fighting for his job. Will he put in Kennedy to save Gardner's redshirt if he thinks he's saving it for another coach? If he does, I think it would actually send a good message from RR that he is putting the kids before himself. If he puts in Gardner, it would certainly show that he feels he needs a win to save his job, but it could also be perceived as putting his own needs before the player who has the potential to get a whole extra SEASON as a starter in place of this one middle-tier bowl game. Wow. This is a tough one if DRob does get injured. Again, I don't foresee Robinson getting hurt in a one-and-done bowl game type scenario, but if he does...


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:46 p.m.

you guys have to be kidding me. It's RR fault that the underachiever contiunes to underachive. Why don't you blame him if it rains on new years too. Hasn't there been reports that he has had Tate in several times to discuss his performance in the classroom. At some point the kid has to take some responsibility for his actions.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:46 p.m.

What does this mean did not meet university standards and is ineligible to participate. Is it simply grades too low.. the comment is usually "academically ineligible".... or what is the real reason?


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:45 p.m.

Food for the Troll Goes to show you just how easy the classes are at OSU. And that's NOT a joke and you know it. It's also often an academic setback for OSU football players to transfer as many of their credits aren't accepted by other universities. Advantage: Buckeyes!


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:43 p.m.

I wish young Mr. Forcier the best he always seemed like a good kid but maybe that's the problem, Tate needs to man up and take responsibility for his actions. I respect the University and RR for not figuring out a way to cheat and hopefully this will be a learning experiance for Tate and the other players with issues, Go Blue!


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:38 p.m.

Speaking of OSU, it must be easier to get an 'A' grade in any course at OSU than a first grader would at any elementary school.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:36 p.m.

Well OSUbebetter, since you brought it up, let's take a look at academics at Ohio State. Here is an excerpt from a New York Times article that printed this from Sports Illustrated on one of OSU best players: "Two articles in the magazine lampooned Katzenmoyers academic course load. To be eligible to play, he needed to pass Golf 1, Music 140 and AIDS: What Every College Student Should Know." Congratulations to the OSU players on the Academic All Big Ten list.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:36 p.m.

did not meet university standards and is ineligible to participate. This does not say he was academically ineligible. To me this sounds like he has done something else to screw himself up and the university is sending him home from the Bowl Game to avoid any possibility of further problems. Maybe he did something like sell his wingless helmet to get money for a tat and unlike OSU Michigan actually does penalize people for that.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:26 p.m.

Harbaugh will come in and clean house and get michigan back on top in every catagory. Yes, RR is part to blame cause he should keep track of how his players are doing in the classroom. Just shows how RR can't coach every aspect of the game. LCarr did a fine job in that area.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 8:02 p.m.

The 2010 Academic All-Big Ten list ".....To make it a player has to be in at least his second year of school, have maintained at least a 3.0 grade-point average and be a letter-winner....." Northwestern 31 players Ohio State (22) Wisconsin (22) Indiana (22) Penn State (19) Iowa (16) Minnesota (15) Purdue (14) Michigan State (13) Michigan (8) Illinois (7) ".....Pryor was one of seven starting quarterbacks on the list, including Wisconsin's Scott Tolzien, Michigan State's Kirk Cousins, Northwestern's Dan Persa, Minnesota's Adam Weber, Indiana's Ben Chappell, all seniors, and Illinois redshirt freshman Nathan Scheelhaase....." Neither Tate nor Robinson were on the list.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7:55 p.m.

Here was a player with true potential, both in and out of the classroom. He began as a confident qb and then something went terribly wrong. Tate must be accountable for his actions, but to me this is another example as to why we have the wrong coaching team at Michigan.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7:54 p.m.

Yes, Lawrence. It's a coach's fault when a kid who has a track record of slacking continues to slack. Some kids just don't follow directions. You can tell Tate doesn't take coaching well by the way he plays. First read isn't there? Do I look to the second read? NOPE! I'M BRETT FAVRE!


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7:45 p.m.

Just when I thought we were starting to get everyday bad news behind us, smacked again. Let the RR haters commence, well he played Devin and did not care whether he is burning a red shirt. He (RR) is just wanting a win for his own personal gratification,bla bla bla. Personally, what was Forcier thinking?


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7:44 p.m.

Just shows how RR is on top of things. Another reason to get rid of him. How do not make sure your back up is in good shape. Please UM, let's move on from this disaster of an experiment.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7:41 p.m.

Didn't Tate give an interview just the other day stating all you have to do is show up for class? So couldn't he even do that?


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7:29 p.m.

doesn't Rod keep track of grades?Or is he just pimping Tate. R.spread offense man better hope D Rob doesn't get hurt.

David Briegel

Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7:14 p.m.

Tate must be transferring early! How could you not know your QB was failing or not going to class? Student Athlete and all!?


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7:13 p.m.

Crybaby is toast anyway so if needed don't blow a redshirt year for DG


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 7 p.m.

No way we should blow Devin's medical redshirt because of a mediocre bowl game. Use Kennedy or Gallon, if needed.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 6:55 p.m.

Wow. I hope Denard doesn't get hurt and that Gardner has been getting lots of reps during practice. Why did they wait until two days before the game to announce it? The timing is interesting.


Thu, Dec 30, 2010 : 6:53 p.m.

Too much time practicing and not enough studying!