It’s been awhile. Nice to see you again.
First, an apology: For those of you that know me well, it comes as no surprise to you why I haven’t been posting much here at SIM. During the summer, I took a position as the lead blogger at Motown Wings and now that hockey season has started, I’m dedicating most of my time to that site. Combine that with a real job and wanting to have some sort of a life outside of blogging, and you can see how SIM gets the short end of the stick. It’s probably going to be like this for some time, so if I lost any of you readers out there because of it, I’m sorry.
However, SIM will continue to serve as my mouthpiece for all sports things unrelated to the Wings, and will continue to be updated, just on a much more limited basis.
That said, it’s time to talk about the Rich Rodriguez experience. Over the past month or so, I have to guess that between phone calls, text messages, IM’s, tweets and discussions on MGoTalk, I’ve discussed Rodriguez’s role as Michigan’s head football man at least a hundred times. Now, I love a good discussion as much as the next guy, but what these are turning into borders on what I consider a “discussion” and lists dangerously towards to side of “whining”. We’ve all heard it: “Fire Rich Rodriguez.” “He sucks.” “He’s not a Michigan Man.” “He can’t cut it here.” “His schemes don’t work.” “His staff is terrible.” “He just doesn’t fit.” “He was a mistake.”
Here’s my thing: You can have whatever opinion you want. I have many of them and that’s A-OK. But if you want to bitch and moan about someone or something not living up to your expectations or letting you down, and then call for that person to be removed, you BEST have a solution or replacement option that is not Brian Kelly or Les Miles coming out of your mouth right afterwards. Otherwise, just STFU and don’t waste my time. For all of you asshats out there that want Rod canned, you need to step back off that ledge my friend. Don’t you get it? Rodriguez is exactly what you asked for three years ago when Lloyd decided that he had better things to do than coach and recruit, and now you want to go through that shitstorm of a coaching search process again? Oh wait, you want to do it with an outgoing athletic director just to up the ante and make it a little bit more fun this time. Gotcha.
Here’s what you need to do.
Stop acting like we are entitled to some magical football experience just because the team wears winged helmets and touches a banner before the game. My biggest beef with this whole thing is when I ask someone why these changes need to be made and all I get back is “Well, because we’re Michigan and we should be better than this.” What better? 9-3 better? Maybe 8-4? Because, lest we forget, that was the “better” everyone was complaining about when Lloyd was at the helm. We wanted “better” then as well, in the form of undefeated seasons, non Rose Bowl blowout losses and an innovative playcalling scheme that overhauled the “run, run, run, punt” scheme that permeated Schembechler Hall for so long.
You got that coach. You just expected him to turn water into wine and take a group of athletes that either have A) No business running that scheme or B) Are freshmen and work a dynamic and complex scheme to perfection. It’s like driving a pickup truck and then having someone hand you the keys to a jumbo jet with nothing more than a smile and a “Good Luck!” It’s called unreasonable expectations, and all you haters out there are struggling to grasp that concept. Change takes work. Success takes work. If you don’t believe our guys are putting in the work to make it happen, then I have some great property down in Florida I’d love to talk to you about as well.
Basically, you wanted all of the glory with none of the work or sacrifice.
It’s time to get with the program. I can’t make you like or even support Rich Rodriguez. All I can do is make a case for patience and logic and hope that it resonates with a few people. If it does, awesome. If not, fine. But if it turns around and the success happens, then don’t even bother coming to me with anything that resembles praise for the man. You doubting Thomas’ out there can all get together and pretend like you “knew all along” that it would work, but don’t even try and come to me with that routine. I’ll simply point back to the article and go on my way. And if I’m wrong, I’ll write anyone that asks a letter of apology and will eat my crow. But I’ll do it knowing that I stood behind the Michigan Football program and the head coach, one Rich Rodriguez and that I endured the whole thing believing that it was all for the best.
Besides, I’m enjoying all of the leg room I have on the bandwagon right now.