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Posted on Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 5:58 a.m.

Topic of how Rich Rodriguez treated former players remains a sensitive one for former members of Michigan football team

By Pete Bigelow


Some former Michigan players say ex-Michigan coach Rich Rodriguez and his staff did a good job of reaching out to alumni of the program.

When Rich Rodriguez first took over the Michigan football program, LaMarr Woodley wondered how an outsider would handle the legions of former Wolverines who remain active alumni.

He didn’t wait long for an answer.

“The first thing he said was I want all the alumni to come back, because this is home to them,” Woodley said. “Rich and Mike Barwis, they always took the time for the former players.”

A month after Rodriguez’s three-year tenure ended, the topic of how he treated former players remains a sensitive one.

Shortly after the coaching change that resulted in Brady Hoke’s hiring last month, several former Wolverines said a disconnect had developed between Rodriguez and former Michigan football players.

Offensive lineman Rueben Riley, who played three years in the NFL, sensed he was unwanted around the program, but that he “didn’t consider it a slap in the face, because they didn’t reach out to anybody.”

He was one of several who echoed that sentiment.

But when other former players read those comments, they felt compelled to speak out on behalf of a coach they had never played for, but one they say always extended invitations to former Wolverines and welcomed them around the program.

“Honestly, I read that some of the players said that Rich Rod didn’t make them feel comfortable, and you know, I felt like that wasn’t true at all,” said Woodley, who will play for the Pittsburgh Steelers in tonight’s Super Bowl.

“A lot of players have been back training, and I felt like he welcomed us with open arms.”

Rodriguez was fired on Jan. 5, four days after Michigan lost to Mississippi State, 52-14, in the Gator Bowl, his first and only bowl appearance during a 15-22 tenure.

At a press conference announcing his dismissal, athletic director Dave Brandon acknowledged that the Wolverines program had been divided over Rodriguez, the first coach to be hired from outside the program since Bo Schembechler in 1968.

Shantee Orr, a former Michigan defensive lineman, was among those who felt Rodriguez had treated former players well and wished he would have kept his job.

“I love Rich Rod,” Orr said. “I met with him, spoke with him and talked with him. He’s a good person all-around. It’s just a different for outsiders to understand the situation. I wish he could have gotten another opportunity.”

Former Wolverines offensive lineman Jon Runyan, who now representes New Jersey’s third district as a U.S. Representative, said his contact with the Rodriguez regime was limited - but that’s on him.

He met the coaching staff at the annual golf outing hosted by Brian Griese and Steve Hutchinson each May that benefits the C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital

“I actually spent some time with the offensive line coach (Greg Frey), and was made sure to telll me, ‘Any time you’re in town, call me. We’d love to have you come in and talk,’” Runyan said.

“The unfortunate part is that I never got back.”

Pete Bigelow covers the Michigan football team for He can be reached at (734) 623-2551, via e-mail at and followed on Twitter @PeterCBigelow.


Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 2:14 a.m.

Lorraine wrote: " Lloyd Carr allowed this program to 'go soft'. Real soft!" Ahh. Lorraine's newest version of "Lloyd ran a country club." Yeah, that's why so many of LC's players ended up in the NFL--the NFL loves players with poor work habits. And, of course, Lorraine has no proof of this except Charles Woodson complaining about losing football games. Assuming that this is not a product of Lorraine's fertile imagination (she, after all, heard that Bo had approved of whatshisname being hired), I don't see anything in Woodson's comment that suggested the team had gone soft or that Lloyd ran a country club. Lorraine wrote: "Blaming a guy (RR),who came in here, to FIX the problem, won't SOLVE the problem." The "Problem" according to Lorraine: * LC's teams finished in the Top 20 or better in 6 times in his last seven years * 3 of those teams finished in the Top 10 * we won the BT twice and finished 2nd twice in those years * worst BT finish was 3rd in those years * worst BT record was 5-3. * LC's teams were 24-14 against rated teams in his last seven years * average season of 9-3 (light years ahead of whatshisname) * Defensive ranking for LC's last 6 years: 12, 42, 11, 33, 36, 10, 24 The "Solution" according to Lorraine: ?*6-18 in the Big Ten (Whatshisname won one more BT game in three seasons than Carr won in the worst season of his last six) *0-12 against Big Ten teams with winning records in the conference *1-13 against MSU/OSU/PSU/Iowa/Wisky *2-11 against teams that were in the Top 25 at the time the game was played *Winless against teams that finished the season in the Top 25. *Defensive rankings: 67th in 2008, to 84th in 2009, to 110/120 teams in 2010 *Worst bowl loss in Michigan history *1st NCAA probation in Michigan history To each, his own, I guess. I, however, prefer the "problem" to the "solution." Good Night and Good Luck

Lorain Steelmen

Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 1:46 a.m.

By the way, I think Chilltime's comments, are right on the money. Even though I supported LC, while he was coach, we ALL knew, that LC's teams.. UNDERACHIEVED! Let's quit attacking strawmen, (RR), and those of us who are SICK of the losing, and support Hoke. My hunch is, that Hoke has more 'attitude' in his little finger, than Carr had in his whole body. It's time for Michigan to be MICHagain. It's time for Michgan to OWN, osu, Nebraska, MSU, et al. No muss, no fuss, no more medicracy! There is absolutely no reason why UM can't OWN this league, and be playing for a NC on a regular basis.


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 12:58 a.m.

I think I read on one of the earlier posts "What would Bo do?" I'll tell you what he'd do. Upon first learning of the first ever NCAA violations RichRod would have been fired. Bo was a no nonsense, zero tolerance type of guy. Also, Bo would not have recruited many of the players RR did. Demar Dorsey, convicted burglar. Justin Fegain, drug dealer. Bubakar Cicoko, armed robber. Bo recruited as much for character as talent. He always said that a player who lacks character will let you down in the long run. Very few of Bo's players ever got into trouble. When they did, it was usually minor. Same with Mo and Lloyd. I think one of Lloyd's players was arrested for indecent exposure. The next day he was off the team. RR complained that he had to play a lot of freshmen on defense in 2010. Wasn't that his excuse the first 2 years? Except for 2 injuries, what happened to those freshmen from the 1st 2 years? We should have had upperclassmen playing defense in 2010. I guess they just disappeared, except for the 2 injuries to Woolfolk and Rogers. The truth is many left the program for one reason or another. Please inform me if my memory isn't correct.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 1:24 a.m.

#58: In all fairness, I think Carr more than whatshisname gets the blame for recruiting Cissoko. But his troubles began AFTER his arrival, not before. And your sense, I think, is correct: whatshisname recruited many more troubled athletes than did his predecessors. I think the way Lloyd handled both Kelly Baraka and Brian Griesse shows both his willingness to work with young men who get into trouble but not to tolerate those who could not learn from their mistakes. I never sensed that whatshisname had any interest in helping his players work through their off-the-field problems. That Tate Forcier was in academic hot water was an open secret in A2 from the Fall of '09. No one who follows the program closely, then, was surprised as what happened in December. No one, that is, except whatshisname. Good Night and Good Luck


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:38 p.m.

However, some will remember the struggles he had at the end of his career, most notably that he lost six of his last seven games to Ohio State. In his final season, #5 Michigan lost its home opener to Football Championship Subdivision member Appalachian State in one of college football's largest upsets. Also, Michigan lost five of its six bowl games between the 2001–2006 seasons. And largely due to an ongoing problem with losing road openers (Carr's Wolverines dropped six in a row at one point), he only had his program in the late-season hunt for the BCS Championship Game once (in 2006) and never reached the game although 11 other college football programs have since its inception in 1998


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 1:40 a.m.

Well for instance, we couldn't beat ohio state anymore long before RR took the reins.


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 1:40 a.m.

RichRod IS responsible for all the problems that the program endured during his time at the university. I never stated he was not! He should have never been hired! I did not like the hire then and of course hate it now. So, please stop trying to place me in the RichRod box. Michigan has under achieved for years now. That's the truth. A top program like Michigan is suppose to be is constantly in the discussion for the Big Ten championship as well as the national championship but that has not been the case for along time. Second and third place finishes in the Big Ten do not get it done. Michigan is so far from OSU it is unreal and the gap is only getting bigger. It started years ago not in 2008. Let's be honest. We all need to be united in wanting the trend that started in LLoyd's later years and the brief RichRod years to end! Good luck & Good night!


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 1:15 a.m.

"The programs problems started before Rich. I am just willing to admit it to myself and others." Winning percentages: Bo overall- .796 , BT- .850 Mo overall- .758 , BT- .775 LC 1995-2000 overall- .783 , BT- .771 LC 2001-2007 overall- .724 , BT- .785 whatshisname overall- .405 , BT- .250 You're just not admitting to yourself and others that the problems during whatshisname's time at UM were on him and not on others.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 12:57 a.m.

What problems were those? Come on! Be specific! We lost to App. State. OK. Get over it. What else. Facts and stats, please. Good Night and Good Luck


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 12:46 a.m.

The programs problems started before Rich. I am just willing to admit it to myself and others. Good luck & good night!


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 12:44 a.m.

58, you are correct! However it puts the program in proper perspective.


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 12:43 a.m.

Chilltime, if you are going to talk about LC's record from 2001-2007 then you need to make sure you put ALL of the facts in your summation; you "conveniently" forgot to mention: * LC's teams finished in the Top 20 or better in 6 of those 7 final years * 3 of those teams finished in the Top 10 * we won the BT twice and finished 2nd twice in those years * worst BT finish was 3rd in those years * you skipped the great bowl win over FLA in his last year * average season of 9-3 (light years ahead of whatshisname) * our D's were typically rated in the Top 15 or Top 10 whatshisname would have loved to have such "struggles" in his years at UM.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:47 p.m.

Not up to Michigan standards, but light years ahead of RichRod.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:27 p.m.

Lorraine wrote: "I would tend to be in the 'group', that believes that, we ALL, must get behind our new Coach Hoke. I think Rodriguez was a decent man, who was villified, to satisfy some posters, and sports writers, 'agends'. OK, so be it. RR could not help it, that he was an 'outsider'. RR couldn't change it, either. Obviously, Ann Arbor has become a 'closed' town. . . . RR had the 'misfortune' to enherit a mess." Way to rally the troops, Lorraine. Fail. Yup. Top 25 team. 2nd Place in the Conference. #24 defense in the country. Bowl victory over the previous year's National Champion and that year's Heisman winner. The most recent recruiting classes had been rated #10, #12, and #13 respectively. Some mess, that. I won't even go into comparisons with what Hoke has inherited from whatshisname. I tire of repeating the same God-awful stats on a daily basis in response to the fiction you and your ilk post. So much for your grudging efforts to go "all in." You can't simply say "Let's support Hoke." No, you still need to misrepresent wildly Carr's record, to understate the mess created by Whatshisname, and to insult everyone who does not agree with you. So be it. And there are those of us who will call you on it every time you do. Good Night and Good Luck


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:08 p.m.

I can't, and won't, speak for other former players. I know how I feel about the RichRod years at Michigan. I think a lot of former players think like I do, but its up to them to speak out. Over the years I've met former players from the forties all the way to the present. The one trait is that they all love Michigan, and especially Michigan football. We were all made to feel like we were part of something great. RichRod tried to perpetuate that. The problem was that he was destroying before our very eyes that which we former players worked hard to build and/or maintain. How would you feel if you were in the same position? We gave him the benefit of the doubt, but there's a limit. When EVERYONE in the Big 10 looked to the Michigan game as a sure win for them, and State fans began belittling US, it was too much. The former players held their opinions until just recently. Most still won't say anything negative out of respect for the program. All I know is that the sooner we get back to playing "Michigan" football the better. All this "21st Century" futuristic offense was just a bunch of crap. It did 2 things: it got us into the worst 3 years in Michigan football history; and, it got RichRod fired. So much for the great spread offense of the 21st Century, that, by the way, is very similar to the single wing offense of the 1940s.


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 1:15 a.m.

One other point #58, having retired and recovered(from S.E. Asia) in Southern CA. I have had the opportunity to attend many Rose Bowl games when Mich. was out here. Unfortunately, I had the sad pleasure of attending games against USC. USC played, "smash mouth but those guys had a lot of speed to. This is a great recruiting area obviously why do you think especially as of late USC handles Mich. so easily? My opinion was smash mouth and speed. Had we had our smash mouth plus the dual threat QB and the spread don't you think we would have been more competitive against USC?


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 12:43 a.m.

Okay #58 like I said, we're about the same age. 40 years ago a Marine officer or yesterday same difference. I hear what your saying. Jim Harbaugh had one of the best smash mouth teams recently, in your educated opinion could he have matched up with Oregon or Auburn in that championship game mind you he lost once to Oregon although in the first half it looked like he had Oregon's number. I am also curious how a team like Oregon gets so good on a national level over the last few years? Don't you remember when Oregon was like the Indiana of the big 10? I hear what your saying I really do but as much as I loved watching you guys, "smash mouth" old style is having a difficult time right now although I will admit, Alabama is pretty smash mouth. I was surprised that Auburn handled Alabama last year especially the way Alabama handled Mich. state. I feel like smash mouth and the spread speed is the key. Don't you like that dual threat of a QB? When and if that pocket collapses in a big game don't you think that a current dual threat QB(maybe bigger) has a big advantage. Dan Dierdorf said that a lot of folks didn't realize how much talent that Bo inherited when he took over in 69. I think you guys were a lot faster than people gave you credit for and didn't your underestimated speed have a lot to do with that gigantic win over ohio state? I know you guys knew how to bleed but, wern't you guys also fast bunch?


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 12:08 a.m.

PortageLkBlu, I'm 63 years old. I was an officer of Marines, but that was 40 years ago. I was a rifle platoon commander in Southeast Asia. Football is blocking and tackling. The team that is the best at that will win every time. It is a brutal game played by brutal men. Both our O linemen and D linemen should have blood coming from the bridge of their noses, their knuckles, their teeth, and have fire in their eyes. No amount of new wave, fancy offense will negate that. Haven't you watched the decline in Michigan football the last 3 years? Most people believe that it was totally on the defense. Not true. Our spread offense never scored more than 14 points against smash mouth defenses. Those same defenses negated Denard's effectiveness. All the speed from too small players meant nothing against good defenses, especially late in the year. So tell me. Do you want a smash mouth offense and defense that is consistently 9-3 or 10-2, contending for the Big 10, or fancy offense, no defense contending for a lower level bowl game?


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:50 p.m.

#58, I guess you and I are about the same age. I believe you posted that you were a Marine officer my salute goes out to you, a slow hand salute I give you at this moment. I was in the k-9 Corps in the Air Force, scout and tracking dogs, I served in South East Asia. I watched that 69 game in Chicago with a guy that played for Illinoise. In 1968 I worked for Ken Tureaud I'm sure you know of him. I'm aware of all the tragedy. I understand what all of you guys want but I find it hard to believe that old style smash mouth in itself is enough to beat ohio state, what say you?

1st Down

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:46 p.m.

Great points 58. The positive thing from this is that we can learn from our mistakes. Michigan football will be back and stronger than ever.

Lorain Steelmen

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11 p.m.

I would tend to be in the 'group', that believes that, we ALL, must get behind our new Coach Hoke. I think Rodriguez was a decent man, who was villified, to satisfy some posters, and sports writers, 'agends'. OK, so be it. RR could not help it, that he was an 'outsider'. RR couldn't change it, either. Obviously, Ann Arbor has become a 'closed' town. I was a strong supporter of Carr's for 13 years. But looking back now, it is plain to see, that Carr 1, from '95 to '01, was ok, but that he had lost the 'desire' for excellence', from about '02 to '07. ie) Carr 2. He should have retired after 2001. Or he could have set Hoke up, as his successor, like Bo did for Mo, and leave after '03. But Carr didn't do that. Hoke could have several years in now! RR had the 'misfortune' to enherit a mess. He tried hard, and worked hard, but in all failrness, our fans don't want a wide open attack. (And all that comes with that.) Now, Coach Hoke has a unique opportunity to 're-create' the 'toughness', the 'nasty-ness' , if you will, that was characteristic of the Bo/Mo teams. Players that put Michigan, and winning, above everything. Count me in with the fans that want to see the Wolverines, in the top 4 or 5, EVERY year! Like Woodson said before the '97 season started...'I'm sick of the losing, let's just WIN!' I like what Hoke says, when he talks about personal accountability, to each other, and to the team. That is where it starts. Rodriguez is always welcome to come back, to support the current team, just like all the former coaches, but the future now, belongs to Hoke. Let's Go Blue!


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:39 p.m.

I like your fairness Lorrain.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 9:39 p.m.

I know he treated all us State fans well. I miss him already.


Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 2:04 a.m.

Well, one thing for sure, we'll see.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:17 p.m.

whatshisname was by far the most popular Michigan coach ever ... in East Lansing, Columbus OH, Happy Valley PA, Madison WI, Iowa City, and even Toledo.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 10:21 p.m.

You feel about RichRod the same way we felt about Jerry Faust being fired at ND; John Cooper being fired at that school in Ohio; and, the coach prior to Dantonio (can't remember his name) being fired at Michigan State. In each case those incompetent coaches were replaced with winning coaches. RichRod has been replaced with a winning coach. You'll find out come football season.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 8:52 p.m.

"I actually spent some time with the offensive line coach (Greg Frey), and was made sure to telll me, 'Any time you're in town, call me. We'd love to have you come in and talk,'" Runyan said. "The unfortunate part is that I never got back." Quotes like this from former players and the basic gist of the story is that Rich was very welcoming to former players. It's the former players that chose not to go back. It's as if they didn't want to be associated with Michigan football under Rich. Personally, I find that offensive and unbecoming of "Michigan Men". And, based on this, how can one possibly conclude that Rich was divisive as it relates to this topic?


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 9:53 p.m.

In this very article, Woodley stated that he's been back several times and that the former coach was welcoming. Shontee Orr had similar sentiments. Runyan, imo, also had similar sentiments to the other players and blamed himself for not making the time to get back (he's been preoccupied by his career - go figure). Only one player on here said something negative about the former coach. So no, I completely disagree with your take on this, especially in regards to Runyan's comments.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 9:41 p.m.

az - Sure, that's my take on what Runyan stated. Do you think it's a coincidence that all these former players (mostly Carr players) came out of the woodwork when Hoke was hired?


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 9:32 p.m.

The context of what Runyan said makes it appear that he was disappointed that he never came back because Frey was so welcoming towards him. The fact that you are reading into that Runyan and others "didin't want to be associated with Michigan football under Rich" is simply reading in something Runyan neither said nor implied. The fact that you are then offended by an implication that you yourself made up is your problem, not Runyan's or anyone else's.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 8:24 p.m.

His legacy will remain a mystery here at UofM: Mr. Would have, Could have, Should have. The only thing remains is what is he going to acomplish next? It is obvious that the school must remians intact with its family. His life style was not heathy hear due to the stress. It was better for BOTH RR and UofM to cut ties and seperate. Good Luck to Both and Go Blue... Now will the find some real news or a new Journalist?


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 7:38 p.m.

I think this article doesn't prove at all that RR didn't treat former players in a welcome manner. There's only 1 guy (Riley) who had a problem. The others supported Rodriguez. In life, some people are more sensitive than others. It's not surprising a handful (and there's no proof in this article or any that I've read that show it was a majority of former players who felt unwelcome) of players may have felt unwelcome. Who knows? They pick a day to visit when the coaches have a lot going on or someone is having a bad day. Let's just move on shall we.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 5:39 p.m.

fman wrote: "Ok we get it, some people didn't like RR. Get over it and move on." I AGREE! Yet every week I see someone post the win/loss record, worst defense, etc. ad naseum. We can't rewrite history. And repeating the same "stuff", like some kind of manta is, well, boring. Apparantly the only alixer that will heal the wolverine nation is the stat in the WIN column. And we as U of M supporters need to get behind our coach, his staff and most importantly these young men who represent our University. This IS Michigan! Go Blue! Never say die! Take no prisoners! OOHRAH!

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:04 p.m.

"I truly hope that he wins BCS bowls and national championships at his next stop. Maybe then some people will start to realize that maybe the state of affairs within the Michigan football fraternity is a bit dysfunctional." A rather odd statement for a "fan" of Michigan football to make. Personally, I hope that Brady Hoke has ENORMOUS success, success that will show how dysfunctional the team had become under whatshisname. But if whatshisname's future success will show Michigan's alleged dysfunctionality, and if that will make you happy, well . . . go for it. But it seems to me that such a desire defines a fan of whatshisname, not a fan of Michigan football. You don't suppose that the dysfunctionality you observe is a function of whatshisnames's divisive personality and his lovers' avowed hatred (and it is hatred) of Lloyd Carr, do you? Nahhhhhh. Nothing is whatshisname's fault. He's just a victim. A $2.5 million per year victim. Good Night and Good Luck


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 9:47 p.m.

Truebluefan, I don't think hiring a new defensive coordinator would have solved anything. When GRob was hired it was known that he never coached the 3-3-5 defense. RichRod stubbornly insisted that the 3-3-5 defense was his primary defense, even though he didn't have the personnel to run it. Any decent defensive player he recruited either had academic issues or character flaws, i.e. convicted of burglary. Bo always said he recruited character as much as talent because those who lack it will let you down in the long run. Many of RichRod's defensive recruits are no longer with the program for one reason or another. OoohRAH, Devil Dog!


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 9:07 p.m.

Murrow - it's a fact that there are still many fans that thought Rich deserved another year. I thought the best route for this season was to can GRob and hire a great DC to get the D back on track. It's not "man love", as you and others call it. It's an opinion. You have yours and others have theirs. Also, I find it upsetting and petty for some that take any opportunity available to trash Rich, even on articles that focus on positive things he's done. We get it. You don't like Rich. I happen to still like the man and I wish nothing but the best for him. I truly hope that he wins BCS bowls and national championships at his next stop. Maybe then some people will start to realize that maybe the state of affairs within the Michigan football fraternity is a bit dysfunctional.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 8:21 p.m.

Jarhead, Most of us would be happy to move on, but there are lovers of whatshisname who continue to venerate him despite his disastrous record and/or they fictionalize the 30 years of football that preceded the darkest three years in Michigan football history. So long as those people continue to spout their man-love, there will be those of us here who will provide the facts that refute their fictions. Good Night and Good Luck

Stefanie Murray

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 8:02 p.m.

@fman, we don't allow comments that just say "go blue" — we ask our commenters to add more to the discussion than that.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 6:24 p.m.

Semper Fi, Devil Dog!


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 5:43 p.m.

Here, Here! GO Blue! Im still waiting for a response on why my "GO BLUE" post was removed!


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 5:18 p.m.

Not getting the need for this story, not to mention on the front page of the Sports section? There are plenty of other former UM players that have voiced the contrary on RR on several sports radio and TV shows. If there was room for another article Pete, how about a look at the UM Baseball or Softball (ranked #11) teams upcoming seasons? Let's move on, he's gone...there are plenty of other profiles to do of the new Michigan football era.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 7:41 p.m.

well, it's the top commented story. while i totally agree with you, it seems they've figured out which stories get the most comments and write accordingly.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 5:09 p.m.

Dearborn Dan, Your friend must have gone to the Purdue game, I don't remember it raining in a2 this year.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 4:07 p.m.

RR made it plain that they were welcome back anytime, but that isn't good enough for the Carr-tel pot-stirrers. They should stop whining and start acting like the "Michigan Men" the are supposed to be. The worst thing here is that Bo isn't alive to tell them to shut up and act like adults. Really, the Carr-tel got what they wanted. They sabotaged "their" football team for three years to further their own petty agenda. It's time for them to give their whining a rest and focus on the future. If they don't, it will make Hoke's job more difficult. The MSM is finally writing about Michigan in a positive manner; the alums need to either get on board or go hang around EL.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Mon, Feb 7, 2011 : 12:52 a.m.

"Really, the Carr-tel got what they wanted. They sabotaged "their" football team for three years to further their own petty agenda." Yup. It's Carr's fault that whatshisname recruited players who couldn't get admitted to a community college, that whatshisname couldn't coach the defensive side of the ball or special teams, that whatshisname violated NCAA rules, that whatshisname lied about the circumstances of his departure from WVU, that whatshisname and his coaching staff did a miserable job of overseeing the off-field activities (e.g., academics) of the players, that whatshisname implemented a defensive system that was disastrous and an offensive system that the Big Ten's best defenses turned into minced meat. I'll give it to tater and to the other lovers: they do have down whathisname's refrain: the buck stops anywhere but on my back. Good Night and Good Luck


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 6:04 p.m.

More on the imaginary Carr-tel, a totally fictitious creation with no basis in reality.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 4:36 p.m.

"It's time for them to give their whining a rest and focus on the future." Do you seriously not see that you and your 2 or 3 other buddies are the only whiners around ? It is time for YOU to give your whining a rest and move on ! And quit blaming others for your guy's failure ... that is weak !


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 4:12 p.m.

I agree with moving on...therefore your first paragraph was unnecessary.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 4:04 p.m.

Portage "What's the matter boys and girls(complainers)..." Portage, since Jan. 5th we have not had anything to complain about, rather we have been celebrating and embracing the changes made since then. The only complainers and negative people here have been you and your 2 or 3 other man crush club members who still cannot get over your loss. Don't worry though, the sting of your loss will diminish in time. And don't forget, acceptance is the quickest way to recovery, and to getting your life back. "Rich Rodriguez will forever be in the Michigan Wolverine football program history books" No one is going to argue with you about that. Is it possible that you are finally beginning to realize what most other people (accept 2 or 3 of your buddies) already know ?: * whathisname will probably forever be the Worst Coach in Michigan Football History * all-time worst overall record of 15-22 * all-time worst BT record of 6-18 * 1st ever NCAA violations * worst bowl loss ever * worst ever record of 1-13 vs OSU, Wiscy, PSU, MSU, and Iowa * worst ever defense that actually broke it's own records to become even worse over time Great legacy there, Portage, great legacy. No wonder you're beaming with pride.

Dearborn Dan

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 3:55 p.m.

News flash - - Rich Rod lost lots of games coaching Michigan and was fired after three years - some ex-players and fans liked him but many did not - some ex-players talked to him but some did not - some ex-players had coaches they liked that Brady did not hire and got PO'd about it - One of my friends that attended UM in the 70's went to a game last year and said it was cold and rainy I think that about covers it for this year


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 3:50 p.m.

I was mentioned by magnumpi in his post, and I haven't even been posting for over a week! I must have made an impression on him. I don't know if that's good or bad! I met RichRod on occasion and even traded emails with him. He was very receptive to former players. He asked us to participate from time to time on things for the team. He seemed like a good guy. The problem was, he never seemed to get the way things were done at UM. He had his own way of doing things, and that clashed with Michigan tradition. When Bo took over the HC job, he knew everything about Michigan tradition. He made it a point to study it BEFORE he actually took control of the HC job. Then, RichRod tried to completely change the offense and defense and was not successful. Some may say he was successful with the offense. I disagree. Against the better teams that we played, we couldn't score more than 14 points. I don't give a damn about rushing and passing records. The only record that counts is winning and losing. In RichRod's attempt to change over the offense, he ignored the defense. He recruited some good defensive players, but lost them to academic ineligibility or character flaws. Demar Dorsey was a perfect example. Does winning mean so much that we actually recruit convicted burglars? Are we the University of Miami (FL)? He stubbornly tried to install that horrendous 3-3-5 defensive scheme without the players suited to play that scheme. The result was the worst 3 years in Michigan football history, defensively. I grew tired of watching undersized players (especially running backs and receivers) get injured and miss half the season. This new 21st Century offense spent more time running from sideline to sideline than it did running to the goal line. All the hype of speed, speed ,speed meant nothing against good defensive teams. Especially at the end of the year. Being a good guy that people like means nothing when the TEAM is losing.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 10:31 p.m.

Simply...thank you #58 for an insight that none of the rest of have, and for putting the real truth on the last three years!! TiM Go Blue!!!


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 8:22 p.m.

I'd also like to thank you and I do follow your postings (and noticed your absence...welcome back).


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 5:31 p.m.

yes, i agree with tulsatom, i like reading your insights and you seem like a fair person.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 4:30 p.m.

#58, Thanks for your insights as a former U-M player.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 3:43 p.m.

Ok we get it, some people didn't like RR! Get over it and move on!


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 3:23 p.m.

OK, I'm only finishing my first cup of coffee, but is there a point to this story? In other news, it's winter and we might get more snow today. This is why the Sunday New York Times is such a beautiful thing - no competition.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 2:18 p.m.

My guess is that among the major reasons for "disconnect" was the actual 6-18 record in 3 years. It diminishes the old players association and team. That is independent of the many other reasons we posters have complained. Whether former coach welcomed them back or not? I think if the results were actually reasonable, the former players would not have cared as much.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 2:17 p.m.

1st down says it's over, not entirely true 1st you see just like Bo Rich Rodriguez will forever be in the Michigan Wolverine football program history books. After we're all gone and dead the coaching of Rich Rodriguez will still be talked about some favorably and some not same as all the other coaches and the thing about history is that it has a way of amending dislikes in a favorable manner especially after the hater and complainers are gone. I wonder how Mich history is going to look at Brady Hoke well, we really haven't got a clue yet do we not one down has been played but if he goes back to the old style I'm betting we read more favorable mention of RR than Brady Hoke in the history books. Geez, can you imagine, a lot of Mich. football players past and present like RR, how can that be when you read some of the things on this site, I'll be danged?

1st Down

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:41 p.m. are correct in that the Michigan record book will always have the Rich Rod Error in it. I propose that there be an asterisk next to the years 2008-2010: * Rich Rodriguez Error. See Bill Martin. Anyway.....that one is for the record books....BUT my point is as far as 'hard feelings' and perceptions etc. are concerned....ITS OVER. Someone tell Michael Taylor that too. He needs to move on. This is the Era of Accountability and NO Excuses. This is HOKEMANIA! This IS MIchigan! Go Blue


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 8:03 p.m.

Unfortunately, except for Denard's performance, all the records set under RR's tenure were bad, but they will be in the Michigan record books, likely forever (I don't foresee anyone ever doing worse). Heck, I wouldn't be surprised if, in a few years, it becomes common in the English language to say to a receiver who drops a ball, or a punter whose punt goes less than 10 yards that he "really Rodriguezed that one".


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 4:47 p.m.

Hey plb nice point. Some people still think that hitler had the right idea. There will always be an exception to the rule. The fact remains that richyrich is no longer the coach. Let it go gurl.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 2:54 p.m.

Portage, you're right. RR will always be in the U-M football program history books and I suspect some of the dubious records his teams set will be there a long time, too, like the worst bowl loss, the most points and yards given up in a season, etc. On the positive side, Denard setting a record for most rushing yards by a U-M QB is about the only positive record I could think of right offhand. I am keeping an open mind about Hoke and will give him the same benefit of the doubt I gave RR for the first few years. If Hokes proves inept as a coach, he will catch heat for it. However, if he proves to be the solid coach on and off the field and off (no NCAA violations,etc) that I think he will be, he'll continue to have my support and I hope he will earn yours, also.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 2:04 p.m.

What's the matter boys and girls(complainers) were some things said that you didn't want to hear like there are a lot of fans, alum and former players including players that did not play for Rich Rodriguez but liked and respected the man and coach? Get a life, Good night and Good Luck!


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 1:59 p.m.

It is OVER. Rich Rodriguez got his golden parachute and is laughing to the bank. Meanwhile, you have a few players that are going to suffer from PTSD. Maybe the agent who suggested Rich should fired as well?


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 1:49 p.m.

most normal people don't want to go on record to the press bad-mouthing someone unless they have to. i imagine in college/pro football, you never know what bridge you could to burn. personally, i'd believe more what #58ontheroster has to say about it.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 4:01 p.m.



Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 1:26 p.m.

Pete, one more article or opinion piece on whatshisname and we are going to accuse you of having a man crush on him. Can we all please move on already ?


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 1:19 p.m.

Edward, What I took from it and the opinions of all other ex-players is that they are entitled to their opinion. And we are entitled to our opinions. And ours counts more than theirs! :-)

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 1:13 p.m.

From Michael Taylor's interview complaining about Mallory's hiring: "And to me it smells like the old-boy network, and I'm not standing for it." Yes, better that Michael Taylor's version of the Old Boy Network, one that would have brought in Corwin Brown, than another Old Boy Network that didn't. This was not an interview. It was Michael Taylor screaming at his hosts and at the listeners for several minutes, not letting the hosts get a word in edgewise. And, last time I checked, Michael Taylor didn't get to make that call. Good Night and Good Luck


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 12:44 p.m.

And from the "You Can't Please Everyone" FILES: From Detroit Free Press today: Ex-Michigan QB Michael Taylor not happy with Brady Hoke "Upon hearing reports that coach Brady Hoke will name former Michigan linebacker Curt Mallory as his defensive backs coach Monday, former Wolverines quarterback Michael Taylor voiced his displeasure on WTKA-AM (1050). Taylor called the WTKA radio station Thursday during its "Ann Arbor's Big Show" program, saying he was disappointed that former Wolverine Corwin Brown was passed over despite having more experience. "If you want to get down to the bare facts, you can put Corwin Brown's résumé up against Mr. Curt Mallory, two lettermen, and it does not compare," Taylor told the show's hosts. "You don't hire a guy over a guy like Corwin, who reached out. And to me it smells like the old-boy network, and I'm not standing for it." " No coach will please everyone. That's the way it is.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 2:21 p.m.

oops, crack!

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 1:15 p.m.

I wasn't arguing with you, Cash. Just commenting that this wasn't simply Taylor's opinion--that the so-called "interview" was a bizarre on-the-air performance by Taylor. Good Night and Good Luck


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 1:01 p.m.

Well, whatever you thought of his interview (I heard it also) the point is that every person has their own opinion and we should think for ourselves, as it seems the ex-players are doing. I'm sure coaches are used to it. It starts in Junior football. And it never ends. Opinions are like mothers...everyone has one.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 12:50 p.m.

I heard this "interview." Taylor blathered on for several minutes, screaming at the hosts who politely tried to get a word in but Taylor would not let them. He was still ranting and raving as I pulled into my garage and turned the car off. He did himself, his case, and Corwin Brown no favors by his VERY odd behavior. Good Night and Good Luck


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 12:30 p.m.

This article is more evidence that the former coach had a divisive effect on the football program . The old saying that a house divided cannot stand applies here. For me, it was nothing personal. I didn't care that he was a so-called outsider. It was the decline of the program both on the field (more losses than wins in three years) and off (NCAA violations) that lost him my support more than anything else. I was actually giving the guy the benefit of the doubt for the first 2+ years.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 7:33 p.m.

It's hardly evidence to me. They have ONE quote from an actual player who said he didn't feel welcome. All the others thought the opposite.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 5:34 p.m.

I'm right there with ya, Tom. I wholeheartedly supported him for over two years, but after I observed the consistent problems stacking up weekly, I believed that UM was forced to move in a different direction. In all honesty, I'm relieved he's gone, regardless of what supposed heights he could have taken us to in the next 5 years.

Blu n Tpa

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 12:24 p.m.

"Hey, sports writer, it's the deadline for Sunday's edition, what have you got?" "Uh, really? Sunday, that's a pretty big readership day. Be right with you." The editor, "What, the WCiMFH is the focus of another article?" "Didn't we put out a story on him every day last week? We've covered him more since he was fired than before he was fired" "I know boss, but COACH Hoke keeps making great decisions. He didn't tank on the recruiting trail, got an unbelievable COACHING staff, and he's working his butt off to unite the fan base." "Where's the story in that? "OK, I see your point. So this Sunday it's a story on ex-players from Michigan that never played for him. It could be worse, you could have a story on ex-coaches from Michigan and how they felt about the WCiMFH they never coached or played for." "Uh, mmm, Boss, that's next Sunday's story."


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 7:54 p.m.

That sounds about right. We do read more about him now that he is irrelevant than before. Next it'll be "what concession stand staff who worked at Michigan Stadium before RR was coach think of him". Give it a rest. This is clearly filler, not reporting.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 2:23 p.m.

Spin it baby!

1st Down

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 11:31 a.m.

Its like the Sopranos: Its over. We have a new show.


Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 9:33 p.m.

Yeah 1st Down, and "Bobby Bacala" is our new coach too, who knew?

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Feb 6, 2011 : 5:16 p.m.

True. But more like Hello, Larry than The Sopranos.