I think Coach Kill did get some credit. Certainly, there
were lots of shots of him enjoying the moment. Nice hug by Jerry for Brady Hoke
at midfield, "I have been here man, I feel your pain." The Gophers vs
Wolverines was a little Ralphie vs Scut Farkus in there, I am sure. Heard some
rumors of some Minnesota resident Wolverine fans who have proudly flown their
big M flags for years now taking them down. Minnesota has been the nail to
Michigan's hammer for a long time. Certainly the Little Brown Jug trophy has
been held at Schembechler Hall for many years.
The media seems to have a real problem with Michigan being mediocre. A Big Ten without a strong Michigan or Ohio State is believed to be a weak conference. No matter that Nebraska is undefeated, and Michigan State only has one loss, and that to the #2 team in the nation. Lots of Michigan fans are calling for Brady Hoke to be fired, and I have no doubt that he will be. Although, the mentality around Michigan is that "Seventy percent of the fanbase think it's [F]ing 1985 ... As does 100 percent of the staff," to quote one disgruntled fan. Although 1985 was not a bad year for the Wolverines (they finished #2 in the nation after beating Nebraska in the Fiesta bowl.) The poster of that comment probably was not born then, as it turns out Michigan lost the Big Ten to Iowa who went to the 1986 Rose Bowl. In fact, 1988 was probably a better season, as Bo finally won the Rose Bowl that year with a 10-2-1 team ranked #11. Michigan was always very good, but not ever one of the best teams in the 80's. Michigan evidently is weak compared to Notre Dame, Utah and Minnesota, it seems particularly in the O line and the D line. No quarterback wins a Heisman trophy without a strong Offensive line. The Wolverines had two really talented quarterbacks Devin Gardner, rated as the No. 1 dual-threat quarterback recruit in the United States by Rivals.com and the No. 5 quarterback by ESPNU, along with Shane Morris, also highly rated in his year as the No. 4 quarterback by Rivals and No 8 quarterback by ESPN. In town, the Pioneer Press and Star Tribune have heaped praise upon the Gopher rebuilding efforts. They did take note that Michigan was statistically leading the Big Ten in defense. Now Minnesota is. The Gophers now lead the Big Ten in turnovers forced this year, and are tied for 2nd in the nation in that category. Mitch Leidner, who had 3 interceptions against TCU had the game of his life at Michigan. If you knew that if you gave up the game to the Horned Frogs, that you would get the Jug, would you have felt differently about it? A number of other Big Ten teams, and other teams in general would like to have the kind of problem Michigan is having right now: tons and tons of money rolling in to the sports programs. Minnesota has fielded many poor teams, and missed some chances at beating Michigan in the past. I think they just have to pour it on and keep winning. It could happen. The TCF bank stadium is good for 1 bonus win every year I say. Northwestern just pounded Penn State (also unbelievable). So they are not a team to take lightly.