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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

From our readers...

I love "reader email" posts as they allow me to cut and paste instead of writing and editing. Throw in the fact that I'm trying to get this all up the day before a holiday? Well, thank you MZone readers!

End of Another Era at Michigan

Lloyd's coaching career wasn't the only thing that came to an end this week...


Today is the day the stadium renovation preparations begin. I work
next door to the stadium and saw that Keech Street is being blocked
off and that part of the parking lot is permanently cordoned off for
material storage and worker parking.

Today is somewhat the first day of the next era at Michigan w/ Lloyd
announcing retirement and the renovations beginning. I was thinking
this would be the perfect topic for a post. If you'd like, I can try
and send useful pictures of the ongoing construction.


Please send the pix and keep us updated, Dave. I was initially opposed to the renovations but I think I've changed my mind and look forward to the new Big (Hopefully Louder) House.

(Picture HT: MDen)

Fair commerce, fair weather or worse?

One great thing about being a longtime season ticket holder is the sense of community that develops over the years with other lifelong Wolverines in your section. After awhile, they're not strangers, they're family. But not for MZone reader Bill...

First of all I would like to say that I thoroughly enjoy your site and have turned on many of my Michigan buddies and they also enjoy it. However I do have a question. Do you know who I might be able to get a hold of concerning season tickets? Not in order to procure tickets but to have them revoked. I have had the same seats for 40 years and in the last few years the “fans” to the right of me are never the same. It’s always the opposition “fans” that are buying them on the internet for over face value. I began asking that specific question this year and the answer is always the same. I tired of sitting next to the opposition each and every game. That and the non-noise cheering sections are why Michigan seldom has a home field advantage. Hopefully you guys can point me in the right direction. If not then I will begin to query the Athletic Department. Once again, keep up the good work on MZONE.



I totally understand the frustration. I really do. If I want an evenly split crowd, I'll go watch a game in the sports book of a Vegas casino. But I'm not sure there is anything that can be done. If somebody rightfully purchases season tickets, unfortunately they can do pretty much what they want with them (as long as they're not breaking any scalping laws which are hard to/rarely enforced to begin with).

Next up, friend of the MZone and regular reader Beast in Bama sent us the following...


Being a fan of a Big 12 team, I don’t get to participate in the unending Big 10 vs. SEC debate that rages seemingly every week here on the MZone. After all, the Big 12 is still the home of college football dreck such as Missouri, Kansas, Baylor and Iowa St., so I can’t begin to back up any “top to bottom” claims of superiority against any other conference.

But as the crazy 2007 football season draws to a close, I will submit this for your consideration: no conference has had more YouTube moments, more bizarre twists, more raving lunatic behavior – in short, no conference has had a more entertaining 2007 season on and off the field than the Big 12. To wit:

1) Kansas and Missouri will play what amounts to a BCS elimination game on Nov. 24. What?
2) Bill Callahan singlehandedly destroyed one of the greatest programs in college football history. In one season! OK, so did Charlie Weis. But ND is an independent in football – we’re talking cumulative conference effect here.
3) I could attempt to tell you what Dennis Franchione did, but that kind of insider information might wind up costing me $1,200, and I don’t have that kind of spare change right now. He will be missed – everywhere but College Station.
4) Did I mention that Mike Gundy IS A MAN!!! HE’S 40!!! HE’S A FATHER OF CHILDREN!!!
5) Four different teams have scored 70 points or more this season. Nebraska gave up 76 to Kansas one week, and then scored 73 points of their own the following week vs. Kansas St.
6) The too-morbid-for-words Okie-Longhorn crotch ripping incident. I know the UM/OSU rivalry is heated, but I don’t recall any reports of one man redecorating another man’s family room over the Wolverines and Buckeyes.
7) Dan Hawkins would like to remind you that it’s still DIVISION I FOOTBALL! IT’S THE BIG 12! If you don’t agree with him, the intramural fields are that way, brother.
8) Mark Mangino in a velvet track suit. Need I say more?

The Big 12: we might not be the best conference in 2007, but I’ll be damned if we’re not the most entertaining.

Finally, besides M/OSU, what are the best rivalries in college football?


I was wondering what your take is on other college football rivalries across the nation. Specifically the one coming up between Auburn and Alabama. Be careful how you type Auburn vs. Alabama, because if you don't put Alabama in front of Auburn i.e. Alabama vs. Auburn, the mullet nation could explode.

You could take the safe route though and put Auburn vs. Saban, since it seems thats all the Alabama fans cheer for nowadays. Like the shirts they wear that says they are a member of "Sabanation" and the year is 200Saban.

Anyway, War Damn Eagle


Well, what do folks say?


Dezzi said...

From the Michigan Ticket Office FAQ section:

"Scalping: Scalping (selling a ticket above face value) violates University policy and Michigan law. Attempting to sell or solicit the sale of a ticket(s) (even at face value) on campus without a permit also violates University policy. Therefore, a violation of these University policies or this Michigan law may result in your ineligibility to purchase season tickets in the future even if criminal charges are not filed against you. The Athletic Department reserves the right to cancel any existing season or single-game ticket orders and declare you ineligible to order future tickets if we receive sufficient evidence that a ticket assigned to you was sold or offered for resale for greater than the face value of the ticket."

I guess if you want to get rid of the people who are selling their season tickets for a profit, you'll need to hope they are selling them in an auction or something like that... then petition the Athletic Department to revoke them being able to purchase tickets.

The change in coach and the renovations seem to represent a "new era" of Michigan football... will it be the Renaissance? Only time will tell... just hope that the standards that have been set by Lloyd remain.

Big Mac said...

Thanks Dezzi. If I'm not mistaken, and without looking at the back of one of my tickets, I believe that is stated on the tickets themselves. I plan on contacting the Athletic Department and see what can be done. Also I am going to start perusing Ebay, Stub Hub, etc.. to find these profiteers. These people are not Michigan Fans, they are only looking to make money.

Dezzi said...

big mac

I'm with you... I can't afford to get season tickets, and also am on that 10 year waiting list, or whatever system they have for normal graduates... but I don't want to see people who are making money off the games because they can afford it.

If you give me the section and seat numbers... I'm willing to investigate right alongside you.

Tom C said...

Don't count on the Victors Club or ticket dept to do a damn thing about it. I complained last year when I had to pay some a**hole in Ypsilanti 13 time face for OSU tickets last year on Stub Hub. What kind of M fan sells his tickets for the "Game of the Century?" As a Victors Club member and contributor I was on the same damn wait list as the "fan" in Ypsi who sold me his tickets. So instead of making a larger contribution to M this year I lined the pockets of another Victors Club member. Yes, I'm still bitter about that but, I also never recognize anyone in my section (except for the old guy I excoriated after "down in front" 30 seconds into the Oregon game this year - damn I wish I didn't have to look at him every week!) This is a really frustrating situation and I wish the Athletic Dept would do something about it! I know there are thousands of true fans out there who would love season tickets and would actually go to every game, but unfortunately there are too many out there looking to make money for themselves!

Out of Conference said...

Nice post by BiB - and no arguments from me about the most entertaining conference.

I'm torn about laws against scalping tickets to sports and entertainment events. I can see both sides of the argument and understand the writer's angst about it all.

Mikoyan said...

If scalping is illegal, how does Ticketmaster get away with it? Anyways, if I were to ever get season tickets at U-M, I can't imagine selling tickets to key games of the year. Geeze, if you can't handle going to 8 games a year, you shouldn't have tickets.

As for rivalries, I still stick by the Army-Navy game as the best.

BARman said...

BiB--your #4 was coffee-on-the-monitor effective!...

Stephen said...

At far as the best rivalry is concerned. Besides UM/OSU the best game by far is Army/Navy. the teams are not the best, the game may not be the greatest but find me a game that more people really care about, for heavens sake, you have the entire Army rooting for one team and the entire Navy and Marine Corps rooting for the other, plus all the veterans. When Army says if they go 1-11 and beat Navy it will have been a wining season they really mean it. The game also puts College Football into perspective. none of the players are going to the NFL, they are all real student athletes and perhaps most important, look what they face when they graduate, a job that is far more important then football. The last part that makes Army/Navy such a great game is the behavior of the fans. They have a saying opponents 1 day a year, comrades 364 days. I have never heard of any incidents like the crouch ripping one or even fans being treated badly by either team, and consider that a large percentage of fans on both sides have the training and ability to kill each other. Even the cheers say how civilized the game is, not Fuck Michigan or something similar but Go Navy beat Army or Go Army beat Navy. and with that just let me say: GO ARMY BEAT NAVY HOOAH!!!!

Katie said...

I had student season tickets this year. For the Oregon Game I had to be in San Francisco. I GAVE my ticket to someone that was a true blue Michigan Fan. I would much rather know that someone is going to the game in my place and will be cheering for Michigan, than make an extra buck. Those season ticket holders who are making big money on their tickets should be ashamed of themselves, unless of course they are donating the proceeds to the program, which I highly doubt. (Even then, I can not imagine selling my OSU ticket to an OSU fan, unless of course it was Whets, Sru or Wings.....then maybe, if they promised to behave ;o)

Katie said...

Oh and for rivalries what about the Longhorns and the Aggies? I have been hearing about the up coming game on Friday, that sounds like a pretty good Rivalry!

Hook 'Em! :o)

Dezzi said...

I believe that each state has different laws of scalping... I recall the first time Michigan played USC and I lived out in Los Angeles. I got 6 tickets to the game and was only able to get 4 tickets to be used by friends.... I put the other two on EBay above face value (because CA allowed it) and was able to get enough money from some USC alumni to pay for my tickets and my friends... we lost, but I took it.

I think if the UM athletic department gets a lot of complaints about people constantly selling their season tickets above face value, they would have to do something. I can understand if you can't go to a game and you try to recoup the money... but if it is almost every game that the person is selling... something needs to be done.

whetstonebuck said...

(Even then, I can not imagine selling my OSU ticket to an OSU fan, unless of course it was Whets, Sru or Wings.....then maybe, if they promised to behave ;o)

Katie, I'll promise you anything you want/need to hear. ;o)...Now, about those tickets.

Dave said...

What is "War Damn Eagle"?

whetstonebuck said...


Not an Auburn fan, eh?

Dave said...

I admit to being a Big Ten guy with limited knowledge of/interest in Southern football and its rivalries.

So... yep.

whetstonebuck said...

The Auburn version of...

West "BY GOD" Virginia.

Why they don't use "Tiger" I don't know. I asked an Auburn fan here and they didn't know the history either. A brief search on the internet would probably turn up the reason.

Big Mac said...

First of all I plan on contacting the atletic department to determine if they are interested in pursuing this issue. I will not identify the section, row or seat until I find out if they are serious. If they are not serious then I plan on talking to the Ann Arbor News, the Free Press, etc... If we have enough people who are tired of "Michigan Fans??" selling their tickets to the opposition, then the Athletic Department will have to take action. I'll keep Yost apprised as to how things are going and what others might do to help. I want my stadium back!!!

noah said...


'nuff said

goat7ed said...

There's rivals and bitter rivals...I think Meechigan and that Ohio state school, and the southwest scrotum-slice fighters are about the biggest and most bitter rivalries.

From the first response to a request for admissions' information, "Thank you for submitting a Request for Information application to the
U.S. Naval Academy. It will be reviewed, and information will be sent to you shortly. Good luck, and Beat Army!" to every time you turn a corner in the dorm as a freshman, "Go Navy, sir", "Beat Army, sir" to the shout after the alma mater finishes at the conclusion of every football game, be it a disappointing loss to Ball St. or Delaware, or the fourth straight over the Zoomies, or the first win in 43 years over the domers, it is always, "Beat Army!"

Next week in Annapolis will be nuts in anticipation. All quizzes get "Beat Army" filled out for every answer. The mids know which profs are dickish enough to actually count the quizzes and they take the zero anyway. Spirit and energy build at an exponential rate in the confined campus until the students are finally released to attend the game.

For Lions' CEO Matt Millen's son, and 36 other seniors at Army, this will in all likelihood be their last football game ever. They've already selected their specialties for after graduation. They've never beaten Navy. I expect they will leave it all on the field before laying in on the line.

A few years back, a ship made up of Sailors who usually root for the college closest to their hometown, and of officers mostly from Big Ten schools watched the game not because of the "great" football, but because one of the Navy slotbacks was wearing their patch (and it was the only football on). The patch had a great day. Throughout the game, the number of folks around the tv's grew. Every time the patch was shown, folks were screaming. By the end, they were cheering for the team, regardless of their regular geographic and school allegiances. Navy's team is a really nice group of young men who are very aware that the name across the front of their shirt represents more than just a school. ND, the Poinsettia Bowl and leading the nation in rushing will only be consolation prizes instead of icing if they do not win.

Noah, for such a nautical name, you got it backwards. It's
Go Navy, Beat Army!

god of the whoppers said...

as far as rivalies, i think many people overlook the bowling green-toledo game, which will be this friday (fuck you ESPN). I am not quite sure how long they have been playing (BG leads series 36-31-4), but i do know they had to stop in the 60's because of riots and i think someone was killed. given that the schools are 26 miles apart, and toledo is the proud owner of a nike ajax rocket that, if fired would land on the 50 yard line of bowling green's Doyt field. and both have produced some decent football coaches and players. as long as i have been going to UT, we've won, though i hope we don't become bowl eligible so i can spend the holidays with friends and family. as far as the MAC is concerned, it is THE rivalry game, but i am not sure of any others series that were put on hold because of riots, but my money is with this one

Steve said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Steve said...

I'm probably going to get in trouble for this, but alas, it's the net, so nothing that can bad can come out of this:

Long time reader of the MZone, I'm an Ohio State alum and grad student at Alabama and, at least from my 1.5+ years down here, it's clear to me that the Auburn-Alabama rivalry isn't serious, at least not from the Alabama viewpoint. Alabama fans easily obsess more about Tennessee than they do about Auburn. There are too many "houses divided" and the kind of subtle winks and nudges between the Alabama and Auburn fans (like Hey Jenny Slater's observations between Georgia and Tennessee fans when he contrasted that with the recent OSU/UM experience at the Big House) for it to be that heated. As a graduate instructor, I even asked my students if they had the option of losing to one school by 50 and beating the other by 50, who would they want to beat, and approximately 80 percent of the class went with beating the Volunteers at the expense of a loss to Auburn (of course, this method is far from scientific or replicable, but it is just my experiences). Asking such a question to a Buckeye regarding Michigan and Illinois (that silly turtle game), of course, will yield predictable results.

After The Ohio State University/Michigan rivalry there only really stands Army/Navy in terms of end-of-season rivalries. The hatred isn't there, per se, but Army/Navy stands for all that's right with college football when Nike's Nikeworld cookie-cutter uniforms, the BCS and corporate bowls permeate what's otherwise the greatest sport/pageantry in the world. It should probably be a federal law that everyone has to watch Army/Navy and at least root on one side, because everything about the matchup is just so cool.

Mikoyan said...

I always try to catch parts of the Army-Navy game. I never served myself but I had lots of family that served in the Navy (both my Grandpas, my dad and a couple of my uncles. ONe of my great uncles was killed serving the Navy in WWII) so I root for Navy. For me it is the pure rivalry. Not overhyped like other rivalries and the players will leave the game on the field afterwards. And as others have pointed out, you have the entire Army rooting for Army and the entire Navy rooting for Navy. Not to mention the Navy has produced several astronauts (Space, bitches...space).

So at any rate...Go Navy!

MGoBlue93 said...

Katie... since you mentioned UT and A&M, there's one down there which is pretty ugly. A&M and Texas Tech.

It's kind like Moo U. and Michigan. Michigan looks at MSU like another game because the real rivalry is with tOSU and Moo U. is put off by this fact.

Just think of Texas Tech as Moo U. Same insecurities and all.

And if one thinks tOSU fans are inbred, beer-swilling, wife-beating, mullet-wearing, sweaty-yellow t-shirt wearing Neanderthals, then you haven't seen Texas Tech yet.

A few years ago, Texas Tech upset A&M at home, the visiting Tech fans stormed the field, and tore down A&M's goal posts.

MGoBlue93 said...

Air Force vet here... want to take in a game at West Point one of these years.

I'll second, third, and Nth, the opinions that aside from UM/tOSU, nothing beats a service academy rivalry.

I won't even begin to compare the AFA to Annapolis or West Point (due to a lack of history/tradition, fairly new institution, country club like accommodations, graduating spoiled brats instead of leaders) but the service games at the AFA are awesome.

The football is always top notch -- regardless of records. The bands are great, the drill and ceremony is a sight every patriotic American should experience at least once in their lives, and like UM/tOSU, there's a healthy hatred/respect which coexists between the schools.

I won't take sides as far as Go Army or Go Navy, but I won't miss a second of the game when a service academy comes out west nor any of the Army/Navy game when it's on TV.

Rob said...

I doubt there's much you can do about the person who owns tickets to the seats near you unless you know who they are and can prove how they disposed of them. You'd have to know that they didn't give them away or sold them legally. Surprised that's a big problem at Michigan, though. At an LSU game, the teams with the largest followings might be able to beg, borrow, or steal 500-1000 tickets above their allotment. Never more than that.

As for "War Eagle", an Auburn grad once explained to me that it was a battle cry they say to each other. Auburn has an identity problem. They don't know if they're Tigers, War Eagles, or Plainsmen.

UTfan said...

I have been reading the postings on The M Zone as to which rivalry in the country is the most intense. I think that most everyone’s answer reflects where they grew up and/or where they went to college. For instance, I grew up in Houston and followed the old Southwest Conference faithfully. The only rivalries I knew first-hand were the old SWC ones – the most predominant ones being UT - A &M and UT – OU. I had no real clue about Ohio State and Michigan until I had family living in Michigan. Oh, I knew there was a conference called the Big Ten and I knew OSU and UM traditionally were good, but I really didn’t know much more than that. So my answer as to the hottest rivalries is going to reflect my background. I can’t honestly compare the current Big 12rivalries to UCLA-USC, Army-Navy or UM-OSU simply because I never experienced any of those other three on a first-hand basis.

The only thing I am sure of is that one of the bitterest rivalries in college football used to be UT-Arkansas. If you doubt that, I commend the book “Horns, Hogs and Nixon Coming” to you. That book is about the famous shootout played in December of 1969between UT and Arkansas for the national title. The game was played in Fayetteville, Arkansas and the author does a good job of relating exactly what the atmosphere was like there before, during, and after that game. My favorite quote in the book comes from UT assistant coach Mike Campbell who was asked in the week prior to the game what it was like to go to Fayetteville to play. He replied that it was very much like “parachuting into Russia.” (These were the days of the Cold War.)

Temp430 said...

Your photo of the sun setting over Michigan Stadium looks towards the southwest and Baton Rouge.

John said...
This comment has been removed by the author.