The Wolverine

November 2011

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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������ from our readers disgusting. If them winning like that is a recruiting win for them, then we probably don���t want those kinds of kids at Michigan anyway. I wouldn���t want one of my sons playing for a program like that, one that has a player released from jail and on the football field within weeks, or plays dirty like they did against Michigan. Coach Hoke suspending Darryl Stonum for the year because of his offfield problems shows that doing the right thing isn���t always the easy thing and is more about wins and losses sometimes. I am proud to be a lifelong Michigan fan and embarrassed to be a former MSU student. Laura Webb Lakeland, Fla. And you���ve even shed the ski mask for the sunshine. Good for you, Laura. A Little State Hate Dear The Wolverine: Like all Old Blues, I loathe Ohio State in general and Woody Hayes in particular. But if you look at the games from ���The Ten-Year War,��� you���ll find that Ohio State always played good hard-hitting clean football. Woody would never have tolerated the dirty antics exhibited by the Spartans on Oct. 15. How many personal fouls? Was it five or six ��� I lost track. And the late hits on Denard in the fourth quarter were designed to injure him, not just make a good play. The MSU coach is a good man and a fine coach, yet he tolerated this behavior. I guess we should not be surprised at this conduct, since this is the same immature, vindictive mentality that resulted in MSU fans trashing Ann Arbor stores in 2010 and 2008, the same mentality that hurled graphic racial slurs at Chris Webber, and in my day in the late 1960s when the MSU ���scholars��� kidnapped and spraypainted a Michigan co-ed green. Every time I get angry at them (and it is often) I just have to remind myself that they are to be pitied, pitied because each day when they get up they have to face the reality that we are Michigan and they are not. So let the cow bells ring along the Red Cedar, they have little else. Harvey Dasho Walnut Creek, Calif. Sounds like the rivalry is alive and well in Walnut Creek, Harvey. Play Tough, Play Fair Dear The Wolverine: In spite of the strong winds and the numerous, deliberate personal fouls by MSU which were tolerated, if not tacitly encouraged, by the coaching staff and cheered by the players, Michigan came within three plays of winning the game in a decisive manner in the fourth quarter. The fourth-and-inches on the 9-yard line with Fitzgerald Toussaint diving beautifully over the pile for a yard or more while Denard Robinson kept the ball to throw a touchdown pass ��� the pass by Devin Gardner to a well-guarded Roy Roundtree, when Stephen Hopkins was wide open up the middle and could have scored easily ��� the TD pass Gardner threw to Roundtree after he had crossed the line of scrimmage. Completing those three plays would have made the score 31 or 35 to 21 and Robinson would not have thrown his one interception, which was returned for a touchdown. Overall, U-M play-calling was well done against a bigger, tougher MSU defense, and with the success of those three plays, Michigan might have been victorious. The passing game was not sharp, but then MSU���s Kirk Cousins barely topped 50 percent in completions. Michigan���s defense again demonstrated how far they have come with another stalwart game. I���m excited about the rest of the season and truly believe that Michigan will be in every game and will win its share. The only blemishes on the hardfought game were the six personal fouls committed by MSU players. It was obvious that they were intentional and with the purpose of inflicting injury on the Michigan players, especially Robinson. Deliberately piling on, hitting a player well out of bounds, tackling Robinson after the ball was thrown and twisting his helmet to cause a neck injury, and punching Taylor Lewan after a play, all reflected a desperate and undisciplined play by MSU. Why these vicious attacks didn���t result in some evictions mystifies me. The absence of retaliation by Michigan as demonstrated by Lewan keeping his hands by his sides after being punched showed the quality coaching of the U-M staff. The fouls were a blight on a hard- fought game, on the MSU team and coaches, the fine Michigan State University and the proud legacies of former coaches Biggie Munn and Duffy Daugherty, the Big Ten, and the NCAA. It is well that the incidents were reviewed by the Big Ten and the NCAA. Go Blue! Play hard and fair, be aggressive, and never give up. Richard Creal Melbourne, Fla. Sixty minutes of unnecessary roughness, and hope it doesn���t get called on every play. That���s what they teach and live by, Richard, and Michigan has to get back to the point that it doesn���t matter. Four Years Isn���t 40 Dear The Wolverine: With four straight victories over Michigan, Spartan football is definitely ruling the roost in 2011. And for all of us beleaguered Wolverines, the cock-a-doodle-dooing of our Spartan associates is a cacophonous roar. But lest we lose our collective Wolverine sanity, we must stop for a moment and reflect. In the 40 years prior to the arrival of the anti-Schembechler, Rich Rodriguez, in 2008, the conquering Wolverine hoard emerged victorious over the warriors of Sparta in 31 of 40 battles waged across the landscape known as Michigan (with several conflicts lost only because of last-second, desperate Spartan skullduggery). Dynasties are forged and then claimed through conquests achieved over the span of decades, not mere years. That being said, combatants on both sides of this century-long war can only wait for the inexorable march of Father Time to determine how high or low on the walls of Big Ten history this Dantonio era of Spartans will someday hang their shields (i.e., it ain���t over). Stephen Platte Grand Rapids, Mich. It will never be over, Stephen. So they���d better check themselves. ������ Be Heard! Send your letters to: Wolverine Letters ��� P.O. Box 1304 ��� Ann Arbor, MI 48106 Or e-mail: Letters may be edited for clarity or length. November 2011��� ������ the wolverine��� 11

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