Blog Entry

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

Posted on: January 4, 2011 4:33 pm
Edited on: January 4, 2011 7:24 pm

The number you dialed is not a working number.

That was the message on Rich Rodriguez's cell phone Tuesday afternoon. Kind of says it all, doesn't it? In the end, nothing worked at Michigan, not even the man's cellie.

The Rich Rod era at Michigan reportedly has ended with everyone at fault and no one at fault. (Michigan released a statement saying Rodriguez' firing is "media speculation" and that AD Dave Brandon has yet to make a "final decision." A regularly-scheduled team meeting was moved from Tuesday to Wednesday, but had nothing to do with the coach's job situation according to a spokesman)

Three years ago Rodriguez was the obvious and welcome choice at Michigan. It's easy to blame former AD Bill Martin for the hiring but that would be revisionist history. Rodriguez was at the top of his game in December 2007. Michigan went to the wall, financially, to extricate him from a messy buyout at West Virginia.

Michigan fans cheered the whole way. Rodriguez brought the next-generation offense that was going to allow Michigan to compete for national championships. That's exactly what had happened at West Virginia, but for some reason the magic didn't translate to Michigan. It was square peg/round hole from the getgo. At his core, Rodriguez is a West Virginia guy. Michigan is ...well, it's hard to define but Michigan is different -- or at least perceives itself that way.

That's why it's hard to blame this whole thing on Rodriguez. The same guy who recruited and coached Denard Robinson to the brink of a Heisman invite to New York couldn't find a suitable defense. His worth as a valued coach will proven by his next job. It will be a quality one whether it's in 2011 or 2012. Pittsburgh or Connecticut would be wise to snatch up a proven head coach on the rebound. Rodriguez's career isn't over, it's just altered.

You can blame Brandon. He dragged this out much longer than it needed to be to the point that the firing itself seems to be lingering on. Meanwhile, recruiting has suffered. There is no assurance that Jim Harbaugh is coming. In fact the Detroit Free Press reported Tuesday that it is "highly unlikely". In other words, Brandon could have canned Rodriguez a month ago and been way ahead. Michigan would either have a coach or be able to tell recruits they were going to get a quality coach.

Now it might come down to whether Brandon can sell San Diego State's Brady Hoke to the masses. The short answer is no. A quick Twitter survey by colleague Stewart Mandel at was interesting. He asked Michigan fans which of three outcomes they'd like to see, if Harbaugh wasn't available -- keep Rich Rod, hire Brady Hoke or hire Les Miles.

Keeping Rich Rod won.

I don't think Miles comes because it's too much of a rebuilding job. LSU is going to likely start in the top five next season and could be favored to win the SEC West. And there's the little matter of Miles buyout which stood at $14 million before the season. Whoever comes in is going to have to rip up the foundation and start over. Hoke would welcome it. Miles? I say not so much.

The search seems to be trending toward getting another Michigan Man after Rodriguez The Outsider, didn't get it done. But if Harbaugh is out of the picture why limit yourself? Call Gary Patterson. Call Chris Petersen. Call Bob Stoops. Who knows, one of them might have a secret hankering to coach Michigan. What Brandon can't do is trot Hoke up to the podium and tell us, "He was our No. 1 choice all along." No matter what you think of Hoke, that won't fly. Michigan will have settled.

As for blame, it's everywhere. This is like a no-fault divorce. Something went wrong. It's now up to Brandon to get it right. If he can.

Category: NCAAF

Since: Sep 1, 2007
Posted on: January 7, 2011 4:53 pm

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

Michigan State since 1950 has 4 national championships.  
LMAO are you really serious. Do you really want to do this? Lets see where do i start. First your start date of 1950 ..that is funny because it is ancient history....if your gonna use ancient history you should include Michigans ancient history which includes 11 national titles...including Michigans 1997 title which people not in hospice actually remember(several of those players are still excelling in the NFL right now).  Also the Wolverines were undefeated 12 other times including 1992. But seriously Bo won 13 national championships himself MSU has only 7 total(ever). In the past 20 years MSU claims 2...U of M... won 8 of their 42 during that span and played in 19 bowl games compared to MSU's  21 total all time!     We are the winningest team, highest winning %, 33 straight bowl streak, 42 time Big ten champ more than any other school anywhere.   Blah blah blah MSU still sucks their new great coach is 0-4 in bowls...we will be back you will still be little brother.   Pathetic. We are your arch rivals are not worthy of being ours! Quick claim basketball ....youve got 1 more conference title and one more national title..youre really blowing us out there!    

Since: Jan 6, 2011
Posted on: January 7, 2011 10:36 am
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: January 7, 2011 9:42 am

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

you have no clue what you're talking about at all

1) miles didnt say no in 07, he called but at the time, for reasons beyond me, the AD didnt want him

And you believe this one article, when EVERY other article points to exactly the opposite?  What makes this the one reporter on the planet who knows different than everyone else?  Truth is that only a few people truly know what happened and none of them are in the media.  Even then, it doesn't matter as it is 3 years ago and long past.  UM just now needs to find a coach that can rebuild its storied program and bring it back to the national prominence that it once was.

Since: Apr 19, 2010
Posted on: January 6, 2011 11:42 pm

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

Michigan actually won the 98 Rose Bowl by 5 points not 3. Pretty sure Washington State was top 10 not 20. Only Sparty can be top 10 with 1 loss and get blown out by more than a RR Michigan team with no D. You forget the nail biter OT game fluke catch against Mizzou that almost went for a Nebraska loss. You also fail to mention that the only head to head comparison of the two teams was Colorado which Michigan beat by a larger margin.

What will you do when we get our next coach? Lose 29 out of 30 again?

Since: Dec 3, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2011 11:05 pm

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

Easily one of the top 10 best jobs in college football.

Absurd comment.  How many top coaches do you read about lining up for the job, now that RR is gone?  I guess you think that UM is having to beat them off.  Simply put, UM has the potential to be one of the top 10 jobs in college football but for now it is simply a rebuilding job, just like Notre Dame.

Since: Sep 1, 2007
Posted on: January 6, 2011 4:34 pm

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

If Michigan is a top 10 job why did Michigan have to settle on Rich Rod 3 years ago?
i would say at the time RR was one of the top coaches in college football. Just a year earlier he was offered the Alabama job but turned it down. They went with their second choice Nick Saban.  

Since: Jan 6, 2011
Posted on: January 6, 2011 2:38 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Oct 21, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2011 1:23 pm

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

If Michigan is a top 10 job why did Michigan have to settle on Rich Rod 3 years ago?  Les Miles didnt want the job, Harbaugh blasted the athletic department before they officially called him to offer him the job.  In the end Michigan had to take Rich Rod cause he is all the was left.

Michigan is back in the same predicament now.  Top 10 jobs have coaches lined up to take the job.  Les Miles has once again said no.  This time Michigan went to Harbaugh and he said no.  They are looking at Brady Hoke as the only person to come out and say thats my dream job. 

So yet again Michigan is going to have to settle for someone.  And thats great news.  lol.

Apparently Michigan isnt such a great program as its fan base wants to believe.  I think more people are stopping to ask themselves when was the last time Michigan really mattered?  And nobody can recall.....because you would have had to been alive the last time Yale and harvard mattered at football.  The early 1900s.  And there arent many people still alive today that were alive back then.  Heck the last Titanic survivor is dead and that happened in 1912 AFTER Michigan football was relevant.

In recent memory fromt he 1950s Michigan has 1 national championship.  And that was a fluke title.  They BARELY beat a top 20 team in the rose bowl (3 point win.)  While Nebraska DESTROYED a top 5 team by over 20 points.  Nebraska should have been sole national champions.  Michigan State since 1950 has 4 national championships.  

So all this tradition and history Michigan has is a fancy way of them saying long long ago at 1 time in the past we were good and mattered and we are living off that time because thats all we have.  HA. 

Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: January 6, 2011 11:11 am

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

"No established coach from a major school or pro team will touch Mich with a ten foot poll."

Absurd comment. Easily one of the top 10 best jobs in college football.

Since: Jan 4, 2011
Posted on: January 6, 2011 12:03 am

If Rich Rod is out, where does UM go from here?

I think Gruden would be a hell of a catch, but the truth is RR has made the Michigan job into a joke.  No established coach from a major school or pro team will touch Mich with a ten foot poll.  i've had 1st hand experience with this being an ALA fan. 
Les turned down Michigan before when he wanted to prove that the "SABAN 2" championship was not a fluke.  And now, well, i think it would take too much to undo what has already been done. 
Michigan needs to find a coach like Hoke, who is defensively minded, and then hire an offensive coach who can put the present players to work in a similar scheme.  problem in the past with RR is that he would not allow his coaches to even recruit defensice players.  stats prove that they must have been all walk-ons.

Hoke isn't the biggest name, which is what Brandon wants, but he is a proven winner/rebuilder.  good choice with Hoke

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