Morris

Go Blue Blog: Time to Clean House

Brady Hoke and Dave Brandon have to be fired and they need to be fired immediately. To let these two continue to represent Michigan football and the university as a whole is a colossal embarrassment to a great program and school. The fact that these two have kept their jobs as long as they did after what occurred Saturday is downright disgusting. Let’s take a quick look at the timeline of the events (all times Eastern):

Saturday: Shane Morris, already playing on a badly-injured ankle takes a vicious shot to the head and shows concussion-like symptoms. Morris stays in the game for another play, then comes out, only to re-enter when Devin Gardner’s helmet came off during a play and had to sit out the following play.

Sunday: Morris is diagnosed with a “probable, mild” concussion. This information would not be released until Brandon does so in his statement.

Monday, 12:30 P.M.: During his press conference, Hoke apparently doesn’t know Morris had a concussion and says that Morris would have practiced on Sunday if not for his ankle injury. Hoke had said that when Morris was leaning on offensive lineman Ben Braden to remain upright, it was because his ankle had given out.

Tuesday, 1 A.M.: Dave Brandon finally releases a statement saying there was a lack of communication between coaches and trainers. He admits Morris was diagnosed with a concussion and Morris should not have come back in the game.

Tuesday, 7 P.M.: A “Fire Brandon” rally is held on the Michigan campus. By this point, a petition has been going around demanding Brandon’s dismissal.

Wednesday, 1:30 A.M.: The petition hits 10,000 signatures.

So, what I would like to know is, even if Hoke didn’t think that Morris had a concussion on Saturday, why was Morris kept in the game after “his ankle gave out?” Why, when Gardner had to come out for a play, didn’t Hoke call a timeout so Gardner could stay in? Why, since third-string quarterback Russell Bellomy couldn’t find his helmet to go in for that play, didn’t Hoke send in a different QB, or Will Hagerup, or just run another one of his patented 10-man plays, and just snap the ball directly to the running back? Why didn’t anyone tell Hoke about Morris’ concussion before Hoke held his press conference Monday and said Morris would have practiced Sunday were it not for his ankle? Why did twelve hours go by between Hoke’s press conference and Brandon’s statement? And, why did Brandon feel the need to wait until 1 A.M. to release his statement?

Since the start of last season, Michigan is 9-9. We know Hoke is a lousy coach, and his lack of success would almost certainly get him fired at the end of this season. But his lack of awareness and concern for the well-being of his players needs to get him fired now. And it’s not like this is the first time he’s done something like this. Last year against Ohio, he told Devin Garnder he didn’t want to see him limp even though Garnder was playing on a broken foot. In 2004, at Ball State, Hoke was sent a letter of reprimand after players got frostbite during a disciplinary workout.

This goes beyond winning and losing. To anyone asking if everyone would be having the same reaction if the team was winning, the answer is 100% yes. As bad as it is that Hoke kept a concussed player in the game, he made it far worse by not taking even an ounce of responsibility. That is why he should be fired. If, on Saturday night, Hoke had just owned up to his mistake and said something along the lines of “It has come to my attention that Shane was showing concussion-like symptoms during the game. I did not notice this and I should have. I screwed up and I apologize to Shane for my mistake.” I feel like this becomes another item on the list of reasons why Hoke gets fired in January. Instead, he kept trying to convince us that our eyes were mistaken, and 54 hours would pass before Brandon finally admitted that Morris was concussed.

The players deserve better. The fans deserve better. The University of Michigan deserves better. Time for someone to finally do the right thing in all of this.

Fire Hoke. Fire Brandon.

Go Blue.

Follow me on Twitter @KSchroeder2325.

 

 

Go Blue Blog: Rock Bottom

Well, that was bad. I’m going to keep this short because I want to forget this game ever happened. The defense was awful and the offense was worse. Shane Morris got hurt and was inexplicably left in the game. I’m guessing Brady Hoke figured that since you throw with your arm, it’s okay for your quarterback to injure his ankle. Morris wasn’t great, but given the offensive line’s inability to block anyone, the fact that he’s a sophomore making his second career start, and the aforementioned injury, I’m not ready to give up on him.

The defense was just all-around lousy this week. Minnesota had no trouble running on Michigan and since nobody has trouble throwing on Michigan, stops were hard to come by.

Hoke Watch: I know mid-season firings aren’t that common, but I will be legitimately surprised if Brady Hoke still has a job on Monday morning. Same goes for Dave Brandon.

Go Blue!

Go Blue Blog: Well, At Least We Can Still Win the Big Ten. Right?…Right?

Look, let’s just say it: this team isn’t very good. The young guys still need to develop and the upperclassmen aren’t playing like upperclassmen. Through four games, Michigan has as many wins as they do games where they didn’t even make it into the red zone. “Inept” doesn’t even begin to describe the offense Saturday, and it starts with Devin Gardner. No, the offensive line hasn’t been great, but neither has Gardner. I still think his passes look better than they did last year, but his decision-making is every bit as poor. So, I was really glad to see Shane Morris come into the game late. Hoke has yet to name a starter for the Big Ten opener against Minnesota, but I really hope it’s Morris. Yes, Morris will make mistakes; he’s a sophomore. But if Michigan’s going to have a guy at quarterback making sophomore mistakes, I’d rather said quarterback actually be a sophomore, and not a fifth-year senior.

On a positive offensive note, Derrick Green impresses me more each week. Saturday against Utah, I was particularly impressed with his patience and vision. For the most part, he was doing a great job of waiting for the play to develop, then finding and hitting the hole. His week-to-week progress is encouraging, and about the only bright spot on this offense at the moment.

On defense, the front seven had their most impressive performance of the season. Unfortunately, most of the good they did was undone by a secondary that continues to be unable to cover anybody. It’s a big problem when the best player in the secondary is a true freshman. (Worth noting: the same can be said for the offensive line.)

Hoke Watch: This game isn’t going to do any favors for a coach who fans already want replaced. And at this point, I have no idea how anybody can possibly defend Brady Hoke. There is talent on this team.  Too much talent for this team to be 2-2 and not even get into the red zone in half its games. Which is why I’m still somewhat optimistic about the future of Michigan football, even if they can’t turn the season around in conference play. I don’t think this program is in such bad shape that if they were to bring in a better coach in the off-season (*cough* Jim Harbaugh *cough*) that they wouldn’t seriously improve.

Go Blue!

Follow me on Twitter @KSchroeder2325.