Desperate times call for desperate measures, and times are sure desperate in the University of Michigan football program. Most pundits declared head coach Brady Hoke a short-timer at the beginning of the season. The home loss to Utah added fuel to the fire, and the loss Saturday to the Golden Gophers poured gasoline on it. However, it was Hoke’s desperation coaching move on Saturday, endangering a player, that has sparked calls for his immediate dismissal.
K. John, with his Ann Arbor ties, says he would be shocked if [the University] fired him in mid-season, regardless of the situation. However, as counterpoint, I offer the recent sensitivities of the NCAA and its member schools toward athletic injuries, particularly the senseless ones caused by coaching decisions.
In case you hadn’t heard or watched the Minnesota game, sophomore quarterback Shane Morris was allowed to play with what appeared to be concussion symptoms. He could barely stand up and was visibly dazed.
Hoke issued the following manufactured statement on Sunday, cleansed of any potential liability risk by UM corporate counsel:
“The safety of our student-athletes is always our top priority. We generally never discuss the specifics of a student-athlete’s medical care, but Shane Morris was removed from yesterday’s game against Minnesota after further aggravating an injury to his leg that he sustained earlier in the contest. He was evaluated by our experienced athletic trainers and team physicians, and we’re confident proper medical decisions were made.
“The University of Michigan has a distinguished group of Certified Athletic Trainers and team physicians who are responsible for determining whether or not a player is physically able to play. Our coaches have no influence or authority to make determinations if or when an injured player returns to competition. The health and welfare of our student-athletes is and will continue to be a top priority.”
Medical evaluation mistakes can be made, but the kid should have been given the benefit of the doubt. No brown jug is worth risking permanent brain damage or damage to any other part of a young kid’s body. What a crock! (Pun intended — give me a break!)
The ever vigilant sports news junkie Joe passed along some of the Michigan partisan backlash he encountered in his journalistic perusals. Two UM blogs provided details and opinions well worth sharing with my broader audience, all seven of you.
From the Maize N Brew blog, Drew Hallet along with the editors of MnB posit that Hoke should get the axe today. It is well written and worthy of a few minutes of your time.
From the well-respected and always informative MGoBlue blog, we have Hoke’s post-game press conference transcript. Comments on the Minnesota game itself are also available at that blog.
In other mid-season coaching changes, Charlie Weis was dumped by Kansas.
So, when do you think the axe will fall on Hoke?
Hoke should have been fired two weeks ago. Brandon will be out too. That is the only thing keeping Hoke there – Brandon and big pocket donor Ross who supports Brandon. But I hope the Regents will do right thing b/c the new president seems to be a lame duck.
When they get beaten by the State University of New Jersey this weekend.
The Nittany Turkey says
Interestingly, Tom Dienhart’s bowl projections in BTN.com include Rutgers, but not the Maize and Blue. He has Rutgers playing Marshall in the Heart of Dallas fiasco.
Meanwhile, he agrees with me for a potential Toilet Bowl destination for the Nittany Lions, who he says will play Pitt in the Quick Lane Bowl in the former city of Detroit.
Just a point of clarification from your post.
is the official UM site (only Dave Brandon stuff here).
is the site where the UM populace speaks their mind.
I don’t care if it’s the Pretzel Bowl in Reading, PA. The important thing is the 15 extra practices. Shit Delaney isn’t giving PS any of the B1G bowl money anyway, so I’d rather go to the one that’s the cheapest for the school from an expense standpoint and provides his excellence with the least amount of $$$ to give to the other 13 teams.
K. John says
Right now I have State anywhere from the Orange/Fiesta Bowl down to the Holiday Bowl. I don’t see them going any lower than that with their schedule.
The Nittany Turkey says
I couldn’t care less which bowl (if any) they might be invited to, as long as it has comedic value, which would be enhanced by a matchup with a joke team, like, for example, Pitt. Unless it’s a major bowl, I’m not going. The last bowl I attended was the 1995 Rose Bowl. That, coincidentally, was the last time they had a team that was worth the time and expense of traveling to watch. PSU made Duck soup and everybody wearing blue and white left happy and ready to spend money in Pasadena.
At the end of the season. scUM wins the next two games and plays Moo u tough. But a double digit loss to tOSU ends his career.
PS Deinhart is wrong about Marshall. They go unbeaten and get the “non “power” conference bid to the major bowls. Which is really fortunate for the B1G since whomever they send would lose by 17 points. Just like the Houston-PS clusterfuck in 2012
The Nittany Turkey says
I dunno about Hoke. The Shane Morris clips made it onto Today and Good Morning America this morning. That’s the kind of high-profile adverse publicity that no football factory pretending to be a guardian of student-athletes wants. If they were going to shitcan him at the end of the season, anyway, now they have the perfect excuse to do it now.
The program is in disarray, and partisans are calling for Hoke’s head. No one should be too worried about disrupting team chemistry at this juncture. The season is down the toilet by Michigan standards. I think the players would be relieved to see him go.