It’s been a while since I did a Wolverines on the Web post, but with so much going on this offseason it might be time to bring these back. First off, I’d like to welcome a new member to the Michigan blogosphere: Hail to the Blog is off and running with posts on potential divisions, an overview on expansion, and a recap of Michigan baseball players in the MLB draft. Make sure to head over there and welcome Cory, a fellow U-M student, to our happy Wolverine blogging family.
For the video-game heads out there, the NCAA Football ’11 demo dropped yesterday for both the Xbox 360 and the PS3, and although Michigan is not in the eight-team demo, EA Sports did release a trailer that includes footage of Michigan, and Sean Yuille of SB Nation Detroit (formerly of Michigan Sports Center) captured this great picture of Michigan playing Michigan State in the newly-renovated Big House:
Why yes, that is Martavious Odoms torching the entirety of the Michigan State defense. Let’s hope that reality will match virtual reality in this case (although snow in an early October game would be a bit alarming). Like last year, I’ll have all the team and player ratings for Michigan and the Big Ten broken down when that information is released — here’s hoping the game itself will be a little better this time around (and I’ll say that certainly looks to be the case after playing a few games of the demo).
MGoBlog breaks down possible divisional alignments, in light of this quote from Jim Delany on how the Big Ten will go about forming divisions:
“First priority’s competitive fairness to me,” Delany said last week. “Second priority is maintenance of rivalries, some of them are very important. They’re part of who we are and they’re not treated lightly. And then I think the third is what factor, if any, does geography play?”
Clearly, Delany took one look at the geographic divisions (with Michigan, Ohio State, and Penn State all falling in the East) and decided that wasn’t the way to go, at least when it comes to football. Moving Penn State into a division with Nebraska, Iowa, and Wisconsin makes the most sense, and maintains the most rivalries — what happens to the rest of the teams, frankly, I really don’t care about, as long as Michigan plays Ohio State and Michigan State every year. While it might rub some fans the wrong way if Michigan can’t play Penn State or traditional rival Minnesota every season, I think we can do without those games being on the slate every year if it means moving forward as a conference (and we weren’t playing Penn State yearly anyway, as they are slated to rotate off our schedule next season).
For more divisional alignment talk, Sean Yuille has a lengthy discussion over at SB Nation Detroit.