The Wolverine

September 2020

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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24 THE WOLVERINE SEPTEMBER 2020 BY JOHN BORTON T he Big Ten pulled the plug on football and other fall sports, creating an autumn vacuum not experienced in the past 12 decades. Emotional reactions ran the gamut, from anger to sadness to confusion to understanding and agreement. We reached out to a panel of reporters in- timately involved in covering Michi- gan football to gauge their thoughts on what has transpired, and what's to come. Our panel consists of Ashley Bas- tock, Michigan football beat writer for The Toledo Blade; Angelique S. Chenge- lis, football beat writer for The Detroit News; Doug Karsch, co-host of Karsch & Anderson on radio station WXYT- FM 97.1 The Ticket out of Detroit and also the football sideline reporter for the Michigan radio broadcast team; and Orion Sang, football beat reporter for The Detroit Free Press. Here's how they make the call … The Wolverine: What's your initial reaction to the cancellation, and the reaction you've heard from others? Bastock: "My reaction, and most of the people I've been talking to, have been pretty similar. I didn't expect there to be a season. I didn't think we'd get through a season unscathed. I also wasn't going to be surprised if there wasn't a fall season at all. "The flip side of that is, the Big Ten handled this announcement pretty poorly. Obviously, the fact that they did not seem to take into account the voices of coaches and players hurts. We saw a lot of Michigan players get in on that #WeWantToPlay hashtag. Coach [Jim] Harbaugh, obviously, wrote that Hail Mary statement on Monday that showed some real pushback to what the conference was doing. "The Big Ten, these last few months has really been known for unity in all these tough decisions, and we really didn't see anything about that. Part of the pushback has to do with the coaches' and players' voices not be- ing heard. "I certainly understand the deci- sion from a medical perspective. The conference could have done a lot bet- ter job of taking other voices into ac- count, or at least making a show like they were going to do that. I don't think that happened at all. "I understand the frustration. It's MICHIGAN MEDIA ROUNDTABLE Local Beat Reporters Take On The Shutdown Questions Michigan football's financial reach goes from the school's overall athletic department to the city of Ann Arbor, and beyond. The impact of no football this fall will be felt by many. PHOTO BY LON HORWEDEL

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