Posts Tagged ‘Rodriguez’

Rich Rodriguez was shown the door by Michigan after three very un-Michigan seasons.  A win in the Gator Bowl might have saved his job but, sadly for him, it didn’t happen.  Instead, the 52-14 loss to Mississippi State highlighted the terrible, young Michigan defense.  The 52 points given up by the Wolverines were the most ever for a Michigan opponent in a bowl game and the 38 point loss margin was also their worse bowl defeat.  Rich Rod was already teetering after the 37-7 drubbing at the hands of Ohio State in the regular season finale and the Gator Bowl performance probably made the Michigan AD’s decision a lot easier.

You're not from around here are you?

Rodriguez went 15-22 in his three seasons at Michigan.  The Wolverines didn’t make it to a bowl game his first two seasons.  Rich Rod went 0-6 against their biggest rivals, Michigan State and Ohio State. Ryan Mallet transferred as soon as Rodriguez took over for Lloyd Carr because the spread offense wasn’t his style. Justin Boren transferred to Ohio State because Rich Rodriguez and his staff didn’t make the team feel like a family, like Carr did. The football team was placed on probation for the first time in its history under Rodriguez. Rich Rod only recruited one 5-star recruit during his tenure at Michigan.

Those all sound like good reasons to fire Rodriguez but the worst thing about Rich Rod, and the easiest reason for the AD, was that he’s wasn’t “a Michigan man”.  I don’t think people outside of Michigan realize how much being “a Michigan man” means to the sheep in Ann Arbor. I believe that if a Bo Schembechler or Lloyd Carr disciple were at the helm during this period, he’d still be around.  Speaking of Schembechler and being “a Michigan man”, remember the 1989 NCAA Tournament? Then coach, Bill Frieder decided to take the Arizona State job right before the tournament. Frieder was supposed to finish out the season and then join Sun Devils. Then AD, Bo Schembechler didn’t take too kindly to that and fired Frieder on the spot and installed assistant Steve Fisher.  Schembechler said, “a Michigan man is going to coach a Michigan team”, and the fans in Ann Arbor ate it up.  Being “a Michigan man” is huge to Wolverine fans, especially in football.

Schembechler: The Patron Saint of Ann Arbor

What will become of Michigan now? Denard Robinson has been coy when asked if he’d return after Rodriguez was fired? Will Michigan look for a coach that runs the spread offense Rich Rod brought in or will they look for a coach that brings back the glory of three yards and a cloud of dust that was a staple in the good ol’ days of Wolverine football? Robinson is made for the spread offense. He might not be a good fit in a drop back passing scheme. Some names being thrown around are Jim Harbaugh (Stanford), Les Miles (LSU) and Brady Hoke (San Diego State). Harbaugh is “a Michigan man” but the NFL is going after him. Why would Les Miles, another “Michigan man”, leave LSU to take over a mess of a program like Michigan? Miles was Michigan’s first choice before they hired Rich Rod.

Whoever they get, this defense isn’t getting any better in one year.  This team is years away from being back.  What kind of recruits can Brady Hoke pull that Rodriguez couldn’t? Tate Forcier could take over if Robinson decides to go so that’s not that big of a deal. Plus, let’s not get too excited about Denard Robinson. He’s got talent but he’s a slightly better version of Woodrow Dantzler from Clemson. Who worked with Dantzler at Clemson? Rich Rodriguez. Rich Rod will be back on his feet before Michigan is relevant again. I don’t know why Pitt hasn’t snapped him up already. Rodriguez can coach. He just had a bad run in Ann Arbor. Good luck in your future endeavors Rich Rod.

 

God, I hate Michigan football!

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