MnB talks Michigan Football with 104.9 The Horn

July 21, 2014 by  
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Maize n Brew's Football Editor, Joshua Henschke, speaks with ESPN's 104.9 The Horn's "Afternoons with Bucky and Erin" to discuss Michigan's upcoming season.

John Oliver notes Aramark’s unique maggot-based prison menu

July 21, 2014 by  
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This is great.

Remember, what Michigan has done is part of a nationwide trend. So when he talks about privatized medical service in Arizona using sugar to prevent infection in a C-section, he's talking about something that could happen in Michigan should we take privatizing Corrections to the logical extreme.


A Dozen Reasons for a Dozen Years

July 21, 2014 by  
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twelve years of marriage

We’ve been married for 12 years.

A dozen years.

That happened fast.

This is the first year that I almost forgot about our anniversary.

And by almost, I mean..I forgot about it until I remembered a couple days ago. I completely forgot the date.

Not because I don’t love my husband. In fact, I love him an awful lot.

It’s just, I guess the one day on the calendar gets lost in the everyday shuffle of to-do lists and other life events taken over by 5 kids.

I haven’t even gotten him a card yet.

It’s our anniversary.

Honestly, I can’t believe we’ve been married as long as we have.

Time really flies when you’re having fun.

We’ve had some ups and some downs, as to be expected.

We’ve had major twists and turns, some not so expected.

But, all in all, it’s been a great twelve years.

So, this year, in honor of our almost forgotten TWELVE YEAR ANNIVERSARY, I present you with twelve things I love about my husband. I could come up with more reasons but I need to save them for future posts, of course.

Keep in mind, I’m not a romantic nor am I a mushy, lovey-dovey person. Thankfully, neither is my husband.

Anyway…

I love the fact that, even though I mostly work from home, he still pitches in with all the household stuff. He doesn’t expect more from me than what I’m capable of doing! I think that he realized 13 years ago, when we started dating, I wasn’t the most domestic of all domestic engineers. Thankfully, he is more domestic than I am.

I love that he is playful and silly. We may not be a romantic, hold hands and make out type of couple..but we are on a level playing field when it comes to being…well…playful. Instead of hugging in the kitchen, like my parents used to do…we have fake karate, wrestling matches that inevitably end with me getting a little bruised. But that’s okay, I can’t complain.

I love the fact that we both have separate interests but we also have many of the same ones. He likes playing poker every Friday night which allows me to escape to my friend’s houses to hang. But then, we go out another night and do what we both enjoy. Together.

I love how he is with my daughter. I mention her, in particular, because they have a special bond. They are proof that being Daddy/Daughter isn’t blood relative. She’s just so lucky to have him. And, I think he’s pretty lucky to have her.

I love how he encourages me to chase after whichever dream I’m dreaming at the moment. Because, I’ve switched directions way too many times to count. Yet, he is always my biggest supporter in whatever online, offline venture I’m in pursuit of.

I love that we get addicted to the same television series! He loves the paranormals and zombies as much as I do.  And we love the same types of movies.

I love that he is truly my best friend.

I love that he ‘gets’ me. And I ‘get’ him. Even when he’s pissing me off!

I love how hands on he is with our mixed batch of brats. He’s there. He’s present. And all the kids know it.

I love that we rarely fight. When we do, they are doozies. But, they become forgotten by both of us and we move onto the next matter at hand…usually involving food.

I love our marriage. I love our relationship. I love him.

And I love that he loves me.

Happy Dozen to my husband. In the most un-mushy way…I love you with all my heart.

You’re one lucky guy, ya know!

Then again, I’m pretty darn lucky, too.

Here’s to many more where this one came from!

 

MnB B1G Preview: Ohio State’s schedule isn’t as easy as you may think

July 21, 2014 by  
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Ohio State ran into the buzz saw that was the Michigan State Spartans in 2013, and although there are some teams who used to be cupcakes, there could be a couple stumbling blocks on the road to another shot at the Big Ten Championship.

Will Ohio State be able to run the table? Let's take a look at their schedule and find out...

8/30 @ Navy

If you've ready anything that I've written before, I've said that I won't criticize any of the service academies; those men are going to do something far greater than those of us who haven't served, and football is just a game. Luckily for Navy, though, even if I were to criticize the academies, I still wouldn't have much bad to say about the Middies. They have become a consistently successful program by any standard: after winning somewhere between one and three games each year for something like 40 years, they've won eight games or more ten times since 2000. The triple-option-we-use-rushing-like-the-Canadians-use-passing-to-kill-you offense is going to put quite a bit of pressure on the Buckeyes. Oh, and they have the second best helmet in college football.

9/6 Virginia Tech

Frank Beamer, Frank Beamer, Frank Beamer. No matter who the Hokies have on the field, head coach Frank Beamer is the heart and soul of this team. He expects a lot from his teams, and he gets a lot. Okay, so the Hokies have gone 15-11 the last two seasons, but don't forget that they went 121-38 from 2000-2011. It's only a matter of time before VT is good again, but a replacement needs to be found for the frustratingly inconsistent Logan Thomas at the quarterback position.

9/13 Kent State

Ohio State's tour of the "Worst State Ever" starts here with Kent State. It really sucks being a MAC school with a good coach, doesn't it? Darrell Hazell exploded onto the scene with Kent State and promptly left for Purdue. Great move. Now, the Golden Flashes have to figure out a way to succeed without Dri Archer, too.

9/27 Cincinnati

Is there a chance that Urban Meyer will throw his alma mater a bone and allow the Bearcats to get a win here? Nope. Besides, even though Cincinnati won nine games in 2013, a 14-0 win over winless Miami and a six-point loss to a two-win South Florida team are hardly evidence of success. However, Tommy Tuberville may be able to have his team play the surprising challenger.

10/4 @ Maryland

I've brought up Stefon Diggs and Deon Long every time I needed to say something about the Terps, and with good reason. Maryland still finished the season ranked in the top 50 in passing even after losing those two men half way through the season. With the Ohio State secondary potentially having issues again this year, and after finishing ranked 110th in passing yards allowed last year, C.J. Brown should be super happy to have his two top targets back.

10/18 Rutgers

Hey, if you can't play Purdue...

10/25 @ Penn State

Penn State hasn't beaten Ohio State in Beaver Stadium since 2005. Christian Hackenberg (and a new receiving group that needs to produce) should be able to work over the OSU secondary, but the Buckeyes are too talented on offense to give up the ghost in this one and should be able to handle the Lions once again--regardless of what a "concerned PSU alum" said to me in an email. Sorry, "concerned".

11/1 Illinois

The Illini have a tough row to hoe in 2014, with games at Washington, at Nebraska, at Wisconsin, and at Ohio State. Sandwiched in there are Texas State, Purdue, and Minnesota, so it appears as though Illinois will have one of those seasons of alternating wins and losses; no streaks or consistency.

11/8 @ Michigan State

The rematch of last year's B1G Championship Game will possibly be for a berth in this year's championship. I bet the Buckeyes are tired of Michigan schools playing the spoiler to their national title aspirations.

11/15 @ Minnesota

The Gophers are in the unenviable position of being on the wrong side of two incredibly dominated series. One is against Michigan, and the other against the Buckeyes. Although Minnesota had a thrilling 12-point win in 2000, it was only the second win against Ohio State since 1981. If there has ever been a Gophers coach who could change that streak, it is Jerry Kill; a man who may not get the best talent every year, but he's someone who can get the absolute best out of the talent he does have. And make no mistake, Mitch Leidner, Drew Wolitarsky, Maxx Williams, and David Cobb are very talented offensive players. Their defense may even be able to improve on last year's overall ranking of 43rd in the country. Wouldn't that be something?

11/22 Indiana

Back in 2011 and 2012 the Hoosiers were able to keep their losses to Ohio State to pretty close scores: 34-20 and 52-49. 2013 was supposed to be a breakthrough year for Indiana, but even they couldn't take advantage of a Buckeye secondary that was the weakest part of the team; the result was a 42-14 loss in Columbus. This year's narrative is similar--Indiana has an explosive offense (missing some pieces from last year, though) and the Buckeye secondary is still questionable. That said, we're about 26 years out from the last Hoosier victory over the Buckeyes.

11/29 Michigan

A missed two-point conversion was the only thing that separated these two great rivals in last year's match-up. Devin Gardner's performance was borderline mythical and, in spite of the worst offensive line in the history of Michigan football, he almost won the game all on his own. Does that say more about Michigan? Or more about Ohio State?

The Outlook

  • Sure Things -- Kent State, Cincinnati, Rutgers, Indiana
  • Probable -- Maryland, Penn State, Illinois, Minnesota
  • Toss-up(s) -- Navy, Virginia Tech, Michigan State, Michigan

Yes, Urban Meyer went 24-2 in his first two seasons in Columbus, but after looking at their schedule, I don't think I'm as confident in their ability to just walk through the Big Ten as I was when I first started doing these schedule previews. Although I have Maryland, Penn State, Illinois, and Minnesota in the "Probable" category, they have the potential to be more difficult and threatening than we would normally assume. Maryland hasn't been seen by Big Ten teams yet, and they have some serious threats at the wide receiver position. Penn State boasts a quarterback who could be at the top of the league. Illinois will be in their second season under Bill Cubit's leadership on offense. And Minnesota has improved every year under Jerry Kill. Both Michigan schools are in the toss-up category because 1) Michigan State is the defending champion and they deserve all the respect that goes along with that status, and 2) Michigan was a two-point conversion away from spoiling the Buckeyes' season in 2013.

At the very very least, the Buckeyes will win eight hard-fought games; ten is where I draw the line. If I were forced to choose two losses for Ohio State, I'd put money on Navy and Michigan State. Mark it down, people, Ohio State will be 10-2.

Detroit suspends water shutoffs; Fried Chicken Frank has a sad

July 21, 2014 by  
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Just as the headline reads (except for the Fried Chicken Frank part, which I made up).

Detroit — The Detroit Water and Sewerage Department is suspending water shut-offs for 15 days starting Monday.

The department is facing criticism worldwide for mass shutoffs that have turned off water to 15,200 customers since March, but department spokesman Bill Johnson said the move is not a concession in the high-profile political fight.

“This is a pause. This is not a moratorium,” he said. “We are pausing to give an opportunity to customers who have trouble paying their bills to come in and make arrangements with us. We want to make sure we haven’t missed any truly needy people.”

Saw a different report this morning about how there are a bunch of abandoned buildings in Detroit with water flowing unchecked into their basements. If true, perhaps what they ought to focus on is preventing those losses to the system rather than shutting off water for inhabited homes and apartments.


With six you get Gadsden flag

July 21, 2014 by  
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I suppose attention needs to be paid around these parts to this summer's nonsense in Vassar. I was going to a week or o ago, because someone published a story with a bunch of hilarious photos of people walking around with Gadsden flags and guns and a sign that said that Jesus wouldn't break laws (apparently someone has confused Jesus with Ward Cleaver, which I guess is pretty understandable). That opportunity came and went, but there was another one this morning. I think this quote from the story sums up America, 2014 excellently.

“I don’t understand the guns,” said Jake Jacobson, a retired airline pilot from Lake Odessa.

That's in response to people walking around the town heavily armed saying things like this:

“If you allow the immigrants to take over, the country will be destroyed,” said Krol, 56, a building contractor from Linden.

and this:

“My rattle is rattling,” Krol said. “Next is the bite.”

What in Hell does any of that mean? Fuck if I know. But, I think we can enjoy the joke built into the first one.

We have a problem with child immigrants, and not only do these clowns go to a town they don't live in and start trying to strong arm local merchants into sharing their opinions but they've made it all about firearms.


Monday Michigan Recruiting Roundup: Mike Weber Looking to BBQ

July 21, 2014 by  
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The MRR updates you on the latest with Michigan football recruiting. In this edition, Mike Weber updates his recruitment, Darrin Kirkland Jr. shoots down a rumor, Brian Cole will visit on July 25 and more players that are slated to appear at the BBQ at the Big House.

Wolverines Cranking Up the Heat on Mike Weber

It's no secret that the Michigan Wolverines have put almost all of their eggs in one basket in terms of the running back they are recruiting the hardest during the 2015 cycle.

That man is four-star prospect Mike Weber (Detroit, MI), who Michigan has reportedly made great strides with in the last few weeks or so. It's been made pretty clear that he is their number-one option by a wide margin at the position in this class.

Weber has stated on many occasions that his mind is constantly changing in terms of who his top schools are, but the trend of the last few weeks seem to point towards Michigan being near the top, if not his top choice at this point.

The Michigan staff and haul of current commits have gone far out of their way to show Weber how much he is wanted in Ann Arbor. They have been in his ear constantly and recently it looks to have helped their chances.

With all of this being said, a decision will likely not come any time soon. He told me back in June at Sound Mind Sound Body that he wants to make his decision at the U.S Army All American Game in January. An announcement could come before that, but definitely not in the near future.

Steve Wiltfong of 247 Sports talked to Weber about much of what I just covered above. You can check that article out here. ($)

Kirkland Still a Michigan Commit, Shoots Down Silly Rumor

Over the weekend, there was a rumor going around the likes of Twitter that 2015 four-star linebacker commit Darrin Kirkland Jr. (Indianapolis, IN) was expected to decommit from the University of Michigan soon because of a change to his Twitter profile.

Well, Scout's Sam Webb spoke with Kirkland himself and took to Twitter to clear up the situation.

So he isn't going anywhere. Another internet rumor debunked.

I guess the reason I chose to address this in the roundup is as a PSA of sorts with the message being very simple.

Don't read too much into what recruits do, period.

So maybe a kid decides to change his profile picture or change his bio. Who cares? It's kind of creepy that there are those out there that follow things this closely at times.

Recruiting is so incredibly fluid. There are always moving parts and things that can change with the status of a player, but not much can be read from what an athlete does on the internet.

And for the record, Kirkland cites "734" in his profile, which is Ann Arbor's area code, so I think he definitely plans on sticking around.

Fret not, Michigan fans.

Brian Cole Visiting Michigan This Weekend

In news that is actually concrete and has legitimate backing to it, the Wolverines will get a visit from one of their top prospects on the 2015 board this weekend.

Four-star athlete Brian Cole (Saginaw, MI) will be in Ann Arbor this weekend, according to 247's Steve Lorenz.

This is a fantastic chance for the Wolverines to become a potential landing spot for his talents. He has the ability to play cornerback, but it looks the Michigan views him as a wide receiver, which is another position they have yet to fill in this cycle.

Cole is the top player in the state of Michigan and it looks like it will be a battle between the Wolverines and Michigan State Spartans, who seem to be his leaders as of now.

Many of Michigan's top 2015 and 2016 prospects will be in attendance at the BBQ, so it will be a good chance for him to bond with some potential teammates over the weekend and explore further what the university has to offer him.

Tentative BBQ Visitor List

I have been getting questions on Twitter about a visitors list for the BBQ, and while not everything is completely set in stone as of yet, Brandon Brown over at MGoBlog assembled a list a week or so ago of the guys he expects to be in attendance and those who will pass.

You can find that list here. (FREE)

I'll try to get a more updated list into the Wednesday and Friday roundups, as it is likely that things will change and we'll have more to report heading into the weekend.

That's it for Monday. Check back in with us in two days for more news and updates on Michigan football recruiting.

Be sure to follow Maize N Brew's Anthony Broome on Twitter, @anthonytbroome.

Before I Go by Colleen Oakley (to be published January 2015)

July 21, 2014 by  
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Before I Go by Colleen Oakley Expected publication: January 6th 2015 by Gallery Books The blurb: A heart-wrenching debut novel in the bestselling tradition of P.S. I Love You about a young woman with breast cancer who undertakes a mission to find a new wife for her husband before she passes away. Twenty-seven-year-old Daisy already […]

40 Days Until Michigan Football

July 21, 2014 by  
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Football is almost here.

Redshirt Sophomore Kyle Kalis, Offensive Guard

Number: 67

Hometown: St. Edwards HS, Lakewood, OH

Height/Weight: 6'5, 304 lbs.

Three Things To Know About Kyle

1. Kyle was originally going to be a Buckeye.  The five-star prospect committed to Ohio State when Jim Tressel was still in the picture, but decommitted in the proceeding upheaval and started looking into other schools.  He decided on Michigan shortly thereafter and began pissing off Buckeye fans everywhere.

2. Kyle nearly gave up his redshirt year midway through Michigan's season as offensive line play continued to be an issue and Michigan needed help.

"We talked about it," Hoke said. "It was a weekly conversation, depending on where we were, where our guys (were) and all those things. But to be honest with ya, I think we got to a point in the season where in the best interest of the young man and the best interest of our future, we thought we would hold off on playing him."

Of course, this wasn't easy on Kyle.

"It sucked. So many times, I was close to going in, but they didn't want to burn my redshirt.

"Everyone wants to play, and it sucks (when you don't get to). And I was mad about it."

3. Of course, we all know that Kyle's introduction to the starting lineup wasn't as smooth as many thought it would be.  Kalis was supposed to be a rock on the interior for Michigan, but he struggled at times and was actually pulled from the starting lineup during the season only to make it back to starting by the end.

Michigan will need Kyle to take a big step forward this year and help solidify the interior of the line.

Michigan Football: Realistic Expectations for the Wolverines’ 2014 Class of Recruits

July 20, 2014 by  
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Brady Hoke has another talented pool of athletes set to join the team. But which players will do what?

According to 247Sports, Michigan had the No. 20-ranked recruiting class of 2014. Merely weeks away, this season could serve as a launching pad for some of those Wolverines freshmen, but it could also serve as a learning experience for others--as in, the vast majority who won't see the field.

Of course, Jabrill--who will now go by the symbol "5&@&5" (artist formerly known as) due to his fame--will make an impact. As a matter of fact, during our phone conversation Sunday (more to come on that this week),  John U. Bacon told me that  he feels that Peppers will be an immediate starter and instantly add firepower to Greg Mattison's defense.

That's correct. That will happen. Write that in stone.

But what about everyone else? I'm glad you asked, because I'm going to run down the list of Hoke's new guys and summarize my expectations for them. As always, feel free to contribute your opinions to the comments section.

Head of the Class? Meet 2014's Sweet 16

Note: Heights, weights, positions and star-rankings are via 247Sports (view the class). Generally speaking, most of the players have put on somewhere in the neighborhood of five to 15 pounds since reporting their weights and measures to the good folks at 247.

Drake Harris (6'4", 180; 4-star WR)

If his hamstring becomes a larger problem, the former Grand Rapids Christian star won't get the quick start that most imagined. At this point, expecting him to be an immediate contributor isn't realistic. Plus, look at the depth--not to mention healthier options--at wide receiver. There's no need to rush him. Sparse play at worst, a handful of games and 20-some catches at very best.

Bryan Mone (6'4", 338; 4-star DT)

Mattison's D-Line looks good, but it could be better if Mone gets on the fast track of progression. So far, I like Willie Henry and Ondre Pipkins in the middle. But that's not to say that I'm opposed to Mone. He's a monster once he reaches the backfield.

M'nB football editor Josh Henschke and I have had numerous conversations about Mone's potential. He loves Mone. I like Mone. If I see more of Mone--and what Henschke tells me to expect--I'll also love Mone.

Mason Cole (6'4", 285; 4-star LT)

Up the ladder he goes, where he lands...OK. You get it. But instead of "nobody knows," it's "only Mason knows."

It's not easy being a freshman in the Big Ten. Likewise, cracking the Wolverines' starting rotation as a first-year player is pretty rare. Cole has an uphill climb ahead of him. But with uncertainty along the O-Line, I can't imagine Doug Nussmeier and Darrell Funk overlooking Cole, who's quickly establishing a solid reputation as rising star within the program.

And he's yet to see the field, which is an added bonus.

Michael Ferns (6'3", 238; 4-star ILB)

Special. Teams.

This year. I see a few big hits during kick and punt situations for the former Ohio prep standout.

If the Wolverines weren't so deep at linebacker, I would give him an outside shot at seeing large amounts of PT. Although the 2014 class wasn't ranked as highly as previous collections (No. 20 compared to top 10), I feel that Hoke really got it right with more than a few newbies.

Ferns is one of them. High-motor linebackers are invaluable.

Lawrence Marshall (6'4", 250; 4-star WDE)

The former Southfield incredi-kid is versatile and nimble for his size. I think that he'll be a disruptive quarterback-flattener...but not for at least another year. And again, the D-Line isn't being manned by nobodies. Mattison has plenty of push without using Marshall.

Chase Winovich (6'3", 225; 3-star OLB)

Depth at linebacker could cause Winovich to be shelved. Not a bad thing. He's one of three solid linebackers in this class. However, enrolling early may help--there were seven: Harris, Cole, Ferns, Canteen, Speight, Watson and Mone--him get a head start on the internal competition.

Freddy Canteen (6'1", 175; 4-star WR)

You watched the spring game. He's going to do that this fall.

Ian Bunting (6'7", 230; 4-star TE)

A lot of rapping in the weight room. Maybe he can battle Breezy during team trips, in the locker room and in class (if they happen to have any together).

Juwann Bushell-Beatty (6'7", 318; 4-star OT)

He's big enough to get in there and make a difference. But he's behind a few guys who know the system and have more experience. But since this is Michigan's O-Line that we're talking, I won't rule out anything.

So...are you?

Yeah, you know me (harmony, harmony)

Wilton Speight (Peyton Manning size; 3-star QB)

At 6'6" and at least 220, Speight is the next guy. I repeat, he's the next guy. But we won't see much of him this year, I'm afraid. Shane Morris is also pretty good, and he's a sophomore with a solid bowl performance to his credit. The stuff would really have to hit the fan in order for Speight to see a lot of snaps.

Noah Furbush (6'3", 240; 3-star OLB)

I was going to say special teams. Maybe some spot play. But after his latest stunt, I'm going to be mean and say no chance of anything. I'm kidding. But "OH-IO"?! Come on, Noah. You're ENROLLED at Michigan, dude...

For the record, I support Furbush. He's one of those high-motor linebackers that I referenced earlier.

Brandon Watson (6'0", 185; 3-star CB)

He's optimistic about his chances, per Matt Pargoff of Maize and Blue News. I'll go with that.

Jared Wangler (6'2", 226; 3-star S)

Limited spot play? I can't see an awful lot in 2014 for Wangler. The secondary is stacked. So are the linebackers. Chalk up this one as a learning year.

Brady Pallante (6'1", 280; 3-star DT)

Sidelining it this fall.

Maurice Ways (6'4" 195; 3-star WR)

Super slept-on recruit who may end up in red this fall. But I like him; he's a great example of the prototype pro-style, deep-ball threat.

Peppers (6'1", 205; 5-star EVERYTHING)

About a week ago, I made a promise that I wouldn't write about Jabrill until mid-August. I'm keeping that promise. This post isn't about Jabrill, it's about his classmates. So we'll save this topic for another day (he's going to be the man, by the way).

Hey, that kind of sounded like a song. Hey, Breezy. Throw those lines into a rap. Thanks!

Follow Maize 'n Brew's Adam Biggers on Twitter @AdamBiggers81

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