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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Guest Post: The Paths of Glory Lead But to the Grave

Our old friend Baggy Pants Devil is back with guest post.  Baggy was semi-regular contributor during the early days of the OMZ.  Glad to have him back on MZ 2.0!

First, I need to qualify this little post lest I be painted as some sort of “hater” who’s not all in for Michigan. I really love this team. Really, I do. The offense is just a joy to watch most of the time. I’d like to see Stephen Hopkins more on short yardage situations but that is pretty much my only complaint. The offensive line—the foundation of any good offense—is great. The corps of receivers is awesome and they block, too! And—in spite of the fumbles and the interceptions and getting knocked out of just about every game for at least a play or two—I will take Denard Robinson and the stark contrast between his sincere humility and his otherworldly speed over the sketchiness that is Cam Newton any day.

I can’t even dislike the defense, in spite of the prodigious amounts of yards and points they surrender. Jordan Kovacs is an inspiration and should have a movie—and one that’s factually accurate—made about him. With so many young men being pressed into service on the field at a point far too early in their collegiate careers it’s impossible not to sympathize and respect them in spite of their less than successful results. I may not like seeing all the turnovers, penalties, or the final scores but I do not dislike this team.

Now, our lovable, flawed, and generally overmatched protagonists face the most difficult remaining two games in all of FBS football--Wisconsin and Ohio State--and I can’t help feeling a bit like this:

You can say what you want about Brett Bielema but you cannot accuse him of lacking a killer’s instinct (see Minnesota & Indiana). You can say what you want about Jim Tressell but you cannot accuse him of lacking success against Michigan (see what feels like an eternity now). We can all hope for some sort of happy ending to this season—and in a strange way there is some hope against Ohio State: Michigan managed the triple-overtime win over an Illinois team that had also pummeled Penn State; maybe Michigan matches up well against teams that beat Penn State—but the unfortunate truth of this situation is that hope is all we have.

Aside from our nearly baseless hope we do have the prospect of a bowl game this season. This makes the comparisons to Stanley Kubrick’s classic even more appropriate since the grim execution scene was followed by one of the most moving scenes ever filmed:

Seeing Denard Robinson, Roy Roundtree, Jordan Kovacs, Tate Forcier and all of those young men who have suffered through the last few years in a bowl game will be like listening to “The Faithful Hussar.” Right now, it's all we got.


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

I would love to see the Jordan Kovacs Story made into a movie. The final emotional scene of the film would have Kovacs celebrating with his Michigan Wolverine teammates after upsetting THE Ohio State Buckeyes at the 'shoe to finish the 2010 season.

BaggyPantsDevil said...


I certainly hope the Jordan Kovacs Story doesn't end in 2010 (there should be 2011 and 2012 chapters).

I would like that scene you describe, especially if it could have Kovacs scoring the winning touchdown after running back an interception. And stiff-arming Terrel Pryor on his way to the end zone.