While Appalachian State enjoys the hot new look for Fall ’07, Joey at Straight Banging considers the weekend’s shocker, well, not so shocking at all, declaring “Saturday’s loss to Appalachian State was just a miserable capstone in the continued decline Lloyd Carr has presided over.”
Supposedly, no one could have seen Saturday’s loss to Appalachian State coming, but yet we all sort of did, some more readily than others. These sorts of things–the embarrassments, the mind-boggling stubbornness, the routine failure on the big stage, the inability to defend the spread, the suspect special teams, the bland and unimaginative offense, the recurring problems from year to year and class to class and coordinator to coordinator–are not new. They happen a lot. For instance, when Appalachian State players were quoted after the game as saying that they felt good about their chances because they’d studied film and knew Michigan’s simple schemes, were there not flashbacks to so many losses previous? USC, alone, seems to know Michigan better than the Wolverines do, and they only study the film for bowl game. What do you think Jim Tressel says? Lloyd Carr has made these absurd realities as much a part of his legacy as he has that one miracle season which he will never duplicate. Ever. Lloyd Carr football has been timid, self-defeating, predictable, naive football, and Michigan fans need to demand more.
Yet for years, most Michigan fans have tried to shout down any polemicist who has tried to point out the cracks in the foundation. Mainstream writers like Jim Carty and Drew Sharp are ridiculed on message boards for their anti-Carr bias; bloggers are nattering nabobs of negativity who can be easily dismissed as fringe crackpots; and even casual fans who’d like more from a program than empty consolations are told to be realistic. What’s unrealistic about job accountability? What’s so wrong with wanting a football team that doesn’t make you fear a collapse or gird for disappointment? Is there any powerhouse program that does less with more?