Video: Richrod’s Enemy At Michigan Was Within?

At a golf outing in Glenville, W.V., on Saturday to commemorate his Glenville State coaching days, Rich Rodriguez talked to reporters about his abbreviated stay at Michigan.

Rodriguez didn’t go out of his way create controversy with his remarks, but when he was asked about his UM ouster, he wasn’t shy about lobbing more than subtle hints about his former employer.

“There wasn’t anything in the job that surprised me. When I first got the job, after about two months on the job I figured out there was going to be more work to do than I thought.  But there wasn’t anything that we didn’t think we could handle. We thought we went through it slowly and surely until it got to the point where it could take off.

“But it didn’t happen.”

“.. I knew after my first spring it was going to take more than three years, and I told them that.

“Maybe they forgot.”

When asked about his future in coaching, Rodriguez clearly indicated why his demise was assured at Michigan - by what he didn’t say.

“I’m not going to say that I’m sure I’ll get back into coaching, but I know I want to. I just hope to get the right opportunity. Somewhere where everyone is pulling in the same direction. 

“I told a good friend of mine who is an A.D. at another school, some people think ‘this job is better than that job’ and they really don’t know that what’s really important is you have everybody pulling in the same direction. The boosters, the athletic department, the administration, the coaches and the players.

“If you have that, you have a chance to have success. 

“We had that at Glenville (State) and we had that at West Virginia.

“That’s, to me, what I’m looking for.”

So who said Stop to Richrod’s Go (Blue)?

The general consensus is that one of the keys to Rodriguez’s departure was the non-support of Lloyd Carr from the very start.

Carr didn’t dissuade that way of thinking when asked last week, “do you think the integrity of Michigan football was at all hurt by Rich Rodriguez?

Carr’s response: “I can’t answer that. I think it was a disappointment for everybody.”

Carr’s remark was in the context of minor NCAA sanctions placed on the Michigan program while under Rodriguez.

Sanctions that are a shadow of what UM interstate rival Ohio State will soon be facing.

Follow Brooks on Twitter or join him on Facebook for real-time updates.

John Cooper: ‘They’ll Never Fire Me For Cheating’

On Tuesday in New York City, the National Football Foundation announced that former Michigan football coach Lloyd Carr would be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. After the formal announcement, Carr talked to national columnist Dan Wolken and related a tale about an unguarded - and recurring - moment he used to have with Jim Tressel’s predecessor at Ohio State.

Carr also relayed a fallback once used by Bo Schembechler for never coaching the Wolverines to a national title and an appalling, personal example of the crippled state of NCAA rules enforcement.

Follow Brooks on Twitter or join him on Facebook for real-time updates.

Speed Read: Kings Turn Back Clock, Beat Lakers

Suddenly it was 2002 all over again for the Lakers vs. Kings rivalry last night in Sacramento. The Arco Arena crowd was hooting and hollering and the Maloofs were acting like giant cheeseballs, high-fiving, bear-hugging and giving lap dances to anyone within reach. Sacramento temporarily forgot how lousy they are in delivering a 113-101 beatdown of Los Angeles that really wasn’t that close. Wake up the echoes of Vlade and C-Webb, indeed.

John Salmons and Kobe Bryant

What the game came down to was defense, specifically the Lakers’ total lack of it. They were unable to stop the high pick and roll, leaving the Kings with huge lanes to the basket to score or dish for threes. This is not a good sign for the Lakers going into tonight’s game against Steve Nash and the Suns, even if Shaq isn’t playing.

That’s three bad performances in their last four road games against average to awful teams (Indiana, Washington, Sacramento), which should be enough to silence any talk about 70 wins. But before Lakers fans go calling their therapist for a new prescription of Zoloft, they should remember that the team is still 17-3.

Zydrunas Ilgauskas and Mo Williams

Meanwhile in Cleveland, a legendary Cavaliers superstar reached a huge career milestone. Congratulations to Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who had set the franchise record for career rebounds in the team’s 114-94 rout of the Toronto Raptors. And oh yeah, some guy named LeBron James tried to horn in on the Big Z’s big night by setting the team’s career mark for steals and chipping in with 31 points.

Other sports news to read while you consider calling in gay to work today:

    Wayne Rooney and accused killer Anthony Corsi

  • Apparently, about the worst thing you can do in England is tell someone they look like Manchester United star Wayne Rooney. THE SUN reports that drunken slur in a taxi line led to one man’s death while the Rooney lookalike is currently facing manslaughter charges.
  • The DETROIT NEWS has word that big-mouth former Michigan QB and mediocre MLB player Rick Leach thinks that former Wolverines coach Lloyd Carr should “support” the guy who replaced him, Rich Rodriguez.
  • An Australian politician rues to the HERALD SUN that having soccer players overstay their visas and apply for asylum is one of the risks of hosting the Homeless World Cup.
  • The WINSTON-SALEM JOURNAL notes that Ted Turner and TBS have been found guilty of a breach of contract in the sale of the Atlanta Hawks and Thrashers and ordered to pay $316 million in damages. Turner immediately protests that this “was nothing like an episode of Law & Order.”
  • Buffalo Sabres goaltender Ryan Miller is cross that a ref swore at him during Monday’s game against Pittsburgh, says the BUFFALO NEWS. Reg Dunlop does not approve.
  • A good hint for coaches: don’t tell the press that it’s impossible for your team to win a game against your No. 1 rival, and Real Madrid’s Bernd Schuster said ahead of his team’s game against Barcelona. Not surprisingly, the NEW YORK TIMES reports Schuster’s been sacked. Also, don’t believe any rumors that Stephon Marbury is heading there to be the next coach.
  • 20 years later, Billy Ripken talks to CNBC’s Darren Rovell about his infamous baseball card. He still gets recognized “a couple of times a week” because of it - three guesses what people call him. Hint: it rhymes with “duck race.”
  • Stephen Curry: he’s streaky, but he’s also really good, as anyone who saw his second-half performance against West Virginia can attest to. The NEW YORK TIMES has all the details.
  • The latest name to enter the CC Sabathia Sweepstakes? The San Francisco Giants, who apparently weren’t burnt badly enough by Barry Zito to swear off big money pitchers. But Giants’ GM Brian Sabean tells the SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS his team is just a “fallback” option if Sabathia doesn’t sign with the Yankees.
  • Remember when Texas Tech QB Graham Harrell said there was a “great chance” that Mike Leach wouldn’t be back coaching the Red Raiders next season. Turns out he’s changed his mind, says the AP (via the SEATTLE TIMES).

Which high-priced free-agent is some team going to most regret signing this off-season?

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Blog-O-Rama: Phillies Snuggling w/Survivor Gals

• THE FIGHTINS’ find the Phillies cornering the market on dating ex-Survivor contestants. The latest coupling: Kyle Kendrick & Stephenie LaGrossa.

Kyle Kendrick Phillies Stephenie LaGrossa Survivor

• HOME RUN DERBY spots dinosaurs running amok at U.S. Cellular Field, and they don’t mean Ken Griffey Jr.

• DEADSPIN swears that ESPN should stay away from doing live TV commercials.

• Dan Steinberg’s BEIJING SPORTS SMOG has the poop on the strange recycling rules in the Olympic media restrooms.

Read more…

Erin’s The Bee’s Knees; Let Tony & Jess Eat Cake

Erin Andrews will be lending her talents to the National Spelling Bee.

Erin Andrews fullbody

As if the young male competitors weren’t nervous enough already.

• When it comes to celebrity couples chowing down, Tony Romo & Jessica Simpson really take the cake.

• The Milwaukee Brewers take a back seat to no one - especially an airline passenger seat.

• But those stranded travelers can always take a ride on Air Tranica.

• An NFL writer claims that ex-Michigan coach Lloyd Carr is “sick”, and not in a phat, dope kind of way.

Read more…

NFL Writer’s Claim: Lloyd Carr Is “Kind of Sick”?

Earlier this week, Dan Le Batard interviewed highly-respected Yahoo Sports NFL writer Jason Cole on his WAXY-AM radio show. It was a throwaway “we have to talk about the NFL during Draft week segment until Cole said something in passing that we found very interesting, and a little shocking.

Lloyd Carr

Cole was asked by Le Batard: “The Michigan Wolverines seem to have a running back, a wide receiver, a quarterback and a left tackle who are going to be drafted pretty high. So why did they stink on offense?” Read more…

Ex-Wolverine Toomer Not So Tight w/Alma Mater

We’re not sure how tight Amani Toomer’s Super Bowl ring fits on his finger, but it has to be tighter than his relationship with alma mater Michigan.

Amani Toomer

MY TEAMS ARE CURSED tips us off to the DETROIT FREE PRESS holding a little Q&A with the Giants receiver. In the interview, Toomer tells of his strained relations with former college chums. Read more…

Detroit Paper Salutes Carr For “Bobby Dobb” Win

The DETROIT FREE PRESS was so excited about Lloyd Carr winning a coach-of-the-year trophy, that they misspelled the award:

Bobby Dodd wrong headline

What they meant to say was the Bobby DODD award, named after the former Georgia Tech coach who apparently was pretty good at the game.

Carr said he was “deeply honored and humbled” to receive the award when he was interviewed during halftime of the Chick-Fil-A Bowl - or if you’re a Freep headline writer, the Flick-Chill-A.

Last year’s winner was Fake Whorest coach Jim Grodde…er, Wake Forest coach Jim Grobe.

The Dobby Bodd…er, Boddy Bobb…er, Bobby Dodd award comes as one last tribute the retiring Michigan coach. Carr will be leading the Wolverines for the last time on New Year’s Day in the Capital One Bowl, when they face Bourbon Rider & the Gloryda Flators…um, Urban Meyer & the Florida Gators.

Urban Meyer Florida Fans

Man, that Freep fouling-up thing is catching.

Carr Still Has One More Michigan Game To Coach

With all the hoopla around the Les Miles misadventures, the Greg Schiano shunning and the Rich Rodriguez reel-in, many fans may have forgotten that Lloyd Carr still has one more game to coach for the Maize & Blue:

Lloyd Carr yelling

The DETROIT FREE PRESS follows up on the retiring Michigan coach as he wanders the Wolverine sidelines for the last time on January 1, when he faces Florida in the Capital One Bowl in Orlando.

And it might be just Lloyd against the Gators, since new guy Rodriguez fired all of Carr’s assistants, before retaining running backs coach Fred Jackson.

Despite all the drama, Carr insists that the bowl game’s media attention not be centered on him:

I want this to be about this team….There’s been a lot of things happening in the past month and there’s also a lot of things that happen at a bowl site. We want the players to have a good time and we want to have a good time, but it’s the age-old story of trying to prepare for a bowl game.”

Rich Rodriguez West Virginia thumbs up

Lucky for Rich, he doesn’t have that problem.

Detroit Columnist Calls Michigan ‘Bumbling Idiots’

COLUMNIST CALLS MICHIGAN CREW ‘BUMBLING IDIOTS’: These adventurous times in Ann Arbor, as the Wolverines continue their Quixotic quest for a head coach.

Terry Foster of the DETROIT NEWS is certainly amused by Michigan’s manhandling of their own coaching search:

Keystone Cops

The Wolverines have been exposed as bumbling idiots as they do their best impression of the Keystone Cops in trying to replace outgoing coach Lloyd Carr.”Foster cites the Les Miles muckety-muck and the Greg Schiano shunning as examples of the ineptitude at Schembechler Hall.

Athletic director Bill Martin and Carr and friends have bungled this thing so badly they can’t even hire a coach — Miles — who is 32-6 in the SEC, on the verge of a national title and practically is begging to come to Ann Arbor. Michigan has become a house divided, and that division is threatening to bring in a second-rate coach.”

Rich Rodriguez West Virginia thumbs up

But now the DETROIT FREE PRESS says the rates have gone up, as West Virginia coach Rich Rodriguez has reportedly met with Martin and UM president Mary Sue Coleman about the vacant gig.Last year, the Mountaineers coach flirted with taking off for Tuscaloosa to grab the open Alabama job, but decided to remain in Morgantown - with an $800,000 raise.

If Michigan decides to strike it Rich, it’s going to cost them. Rodriguez has a $4 million buyout in his contract if he leaves West Virginia before the start of the 2008 season.

Then again, after Miles & Schiano, Rodriguez could just be strike three in the Wolverines’ coaching search.