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Tuesday, 19 January, 2010 11:35 AM

U of M: From Fierce Wolverine to Gentle Woodland Creature


Mary Sue Coleman and The Regents contemplate their navels as U of M sinks into an abyss of mediocrity, while cowardly allowing the NCAA to be untrue to its stated core purpose without so much as a whimper.

“Back in the seventies, Big Corn patented some new enzyme that
chops those miles into a trillion discrete blips of fructose. A few
years later these newly liberated fructose molecules assault the
national food chain. Blammo! An entire nation becomes
morbidly obese. Fact is, the human body isn’t built to
withstand high-dose assaults of fructose.”

--Douglas Coupland from his latest novel, Generation A, page 3.

by Mike Wrathell

By all accounts, Mary Sue Coleman has shown The University of Michigan the money. With her winsome smile, genteel demeanor, and a girlish, aim-to-please attitude, she could have been a success in many fields: call girl, microbiologist dissecting “unwanted” cats and dogs and developing genetically-altered foods, including corn (AKA “maize”) that kills honey bees, leading to eventual mass starvation for short-term corporate profit as small farms and the American dream are destroyed for all time, pizza delivery lady, or University President. She choose two of those and hired a pizza king to run my alma mater's athletic department after giving the assaultive, megalomaniac Bill Martin a golden parachute when he deserves the brass boot. She genetically altered the “Maize & Blue” into the unamazing blue duds.

Any man who abuses his authority like Bill Martin did by pushing around two students who rightly challenged Mr. Bill to show I. D. to enter a restricted area should not only be fired, but also prosecuted. I wonder what bribes or coercion were displayed to those two students to not press charges. A month's worth of milkshakes and Chipatis™ from Pizza Bob's? Oh, you think U of M is above that? NEWSFLASH: this is not Bo's U of M, anymore.

This is not the U of M that plays in a bowl game. Not even the Ty-D-Bowl.

This is not the U of M that has Ohio State as its archrival. Now it is Appalachian State.

This is the gentle woodland creature that Mary Sue Coleman demurely stuffs into her purse like Paris Hilton and her latest Yorkie as they sachet into the premiere of Avatar.

This U of M isn't an athletic powerhouse or an academic beacon. It is a cash cow for its entrenched pedants, steroid-laced illiterates, and an athletic department staff that has the moral principles of the Mafia, no offense to the Mob.

Supposedly, U of M is a public university bound by constitutional principles, guided by Regents most of whom are lawyers sworn to uphold and defend the U. S. and Michigan Constitutions. Yet, U of M acts like a contemptuous multi-national corporation whose sole purpose is profit, while feeding at the public trough to give it the appearance of a well-intentioned country bumpkin from the U. P. whose only fault is a penchant to pouch deer and speed on his snowmobile.

Well, don't judge a book by its cover. Or a judge by his or her robe. Or a Regent by his or her law degree.

You may recall a few years ago when Mary Sue bared her teeth and threatened to sic U of M's legal team on the will of Michiganders in toto for disagreeing with her leftist views on social engineering. She later withdrew the threat, perhaps because her love of public money, though not as strong as private money, made her think twice, or rather once, as her initial reaction was more a jerk of the knee than an actual thought.

Mary Sue felt no compunction about baring her quasi-Wolverine teeth (she is not from Michigan and never attended U of M, and even has an honorary degree from our ancient archrival Notre Dame), because, after all, the people of Michigan who approved the referendum to end affirmative action are uncouth, unwashed rabble who deserve to be set upon by the legal lions of U of M, much like when the French priests of the Notre Dame of Paris suggested to Catherine de' Medici and King Charles IX the St. Bartholomew's Day massacre of the Huguenots as an act of penance.

But when it comes to confronting her learned peers at the annual NCAA convention in Indianapolis about the fiasco that is the BCS, where two of five undefeated teams are arbitrarily picked to play for all the marbles, where a female place-kicker is raped and called a "cunt" by a male teammate at The University of Colorado, then told the term "cunt" is a term of endearment by the equally-dense, then-President of U of C, then forced to grovel before the NCAA to have her punishment of losing a year of athletic eligibility lifted for the great crime (in the mindset of the NCAA who did not even mention her rape when waiving the penalty) of transferring to The University of New Mexico, where she became the first woman to score in a Division I football game, or, lastly, where student-athletes are openly treated like mere cash cows and criminal scum, losing their athletic eligibility and academic scholarships if they retain an agent before merely testing the waters of a pro sports league draft. That fascistic attitude is the same that would think if a person retains an attorney after being charged with a crime that that in and of itself is proof of guilt. The logical threshold should be if and when they sign a contract with a pro team. Can you say "morons par excellence?" There should be no penalty for transferring schools. You should not have to submit proof of rape.

Yet, despite the outrageous and openly obvious contempt for students and the equally obvious double standard when football coaches quit right before their bowl games and start coaching at their new university without missing a beat, Mary Sue Coleman and The Regents have ignored two open pleas I made to them at board meetings in Ann Arbor to confront the NCAA. Might I suggest growing some spines?

Mary Sue Coleman, Bill Martin, and Rich Rodriguez have destroyed the tower of good will that U of M’s football program had built since 1879. U of M has the most all-time football wins (877) and the best all-time winning percentage (.741) in NCAA history. The best high school athletes used to have U of M on their short lists. Now we see Terrell Pryor pick Ohio State over us and top prospects like Ryan Mallett run screaming out of Ann Arbor like a raving banshee, knowing full well of the hypocritical and oafish punishment the NCAA had in store for him for not wanting to play for a corrupt, amoral cretin who rumor has it is already looking to jump ship and who also already has the NCAA investigating our program under his reign for violations that could further damage our already-destroyed program. Sort of like pouring napalm on a burning house.

After Mary Sue contacted Les Miles of LSU in late 2007 before the SEC Championship Game, U of M will probably never get another blue chip high school athlete from Louisiana. At least not for the next fifty years. And I said just that when I addressed The Regents and President Coleman shortly after that particular fiasco.

The Toledo Caper was her next descent into the abyss of amoral behavior that should have spelled her departure from U of M. She met with Rich Rod there and flashed him something he really wanted to see. Money.

Soon Rich told his Mountaineers and his home state to shine on right before the 2008 Fiesta Bowl. WVU beat Oklahoma without him. Good for them. West Virginia must really love us. Oh well, we still have 48 other states to recruit from, right? And there is always Pluto.

Mary Sue learned nothing from the damage, rage, and pain she caused in Louisiana, or, probably more accurately, simply did not care. Much like her obvious contempt for Michiganders and Ragin’ Cajuns, her contempt for West Virginians (Rich Rod perhaps excepted) is glaringly obvious.

Mary Sue is the consummate bureaucrat. Just the same way she could test perfumes on a cat or a dog or a ferret at a U of M research facility, she can flip her figurative finger at an entire state of football fans. It is all about the money.

Sure, she can raise funds. She can don a fake smile and swig cocktails at fancy parties with the best and sleaziest of them.

But what about honor? What about standing up for what is right? What about our plummeting reputation? What about the best interest of the student body? What about Fido and Morris?

As we have seen, the Rich Rod Era of U of M football is one of mediocrity, bluster, abuse, and dishonor. We actually paid Delaware State in 2009 to forfeit their first conference game of the season so we could trounce a patsy, too fearful of accepting Boise State’s challenge to all comers. I am ashamed of my alma mater.

Mary Sue has dragged our name through the mud with a little help from her friends, even allowing Bill Ayers to speak at the Grad Library. I would ask The Regents to fire her, but, after addressing them twice, meeting the stoniest of silence as they contemplated their navels, I know they don’t have the stomach for that sort of thing. After all, who am I? Just a Wikipedia-listed artist with a law degree going up against a lady who knows as much about the law and integrity as Daffy Duck.

After all, the word is she can shake down the rich pretty well with her wily, winsome ways. And that is what it is all about. Money. Cold hard cash. Texas tea. Hail to the Cashola!

I see the new Athletic Director-to-be is a Domino’s Pizza Man. How reassuring. He can’t do worse than Bill Martin, though. Even if the football team ends up tasting like cardboard. It already plays like the Domino’s football team I was on. We played to a tie against the Ann Street store in Ann Arbor back in 1986. I was a delivery boy for the Dewey Street store. I had the only TD for our team. Caught a bomb in the end zone. My g/f at the time had an awesome fumble recovery. We could probably beat Delaware State, too.

One more thing about transferring schools. When Rich Rod was an assistant coach at Tulane back in 1998, they were undefeated going into their bowl game. Rich and the head coach bolted to Clemson, leaving the Green Wave high and dry. Sound familiar? What kind of scum would do that to their team. Tulane beat BYU in the Liberty Bowl without them to finish 12-0. "It's just one of those things you go through in coaching," mused Rodriguez. "We're just trying to take care of business and see what happens." Is that all it is for you, Rich? A business? A public university is not a business, Genius. It is supposed to be about bettering the lives of young people through education. Have you read the NCAA mission statement, lately, Rich? Mary Sue? Have you ever read it?

Here is the Core Purpose of the NCAA: “Our purpose is to govern competition in a fair, safe, equitable and sportsmanlike manner, and to integrate intercollegiate athletics into higher education so that the educational experience of the student-athlete is paramount.” This does not apply to students who are raped and/or transfer schools, or decide to retain an agent to test of the waters of a pro sports draft, though. Nor does it apply to Rich Rodriguez, Mary Sue Coleman, or Bill Martin.

U of M needs to demand the NCAA enact the changes listed herein. The NCAA must move the National Letter of Intent Day from February to March or April and punish coaches who leave their teams before the Bowl Season is over with a year off. Contacting coaches to jump ship must also be banned until then. I would even say to wait until after the parade of the BCS champions, so as not to rain on their parade. After all, it’s supposed to be all about the students, not all about the money, right?

If Mary Sue does not have the intestinal fortitude to go down to Indianapolis and demand the changes outlined here in my bombastic way, The Regents need to send someone down there who does. U of M, as a public university, has a legal duty to see that its students are not treated like cash cows, utterly without dignity or respect. Even if they are not locked in an electrical closet and denied medical treatment.

If The Regents can’t fire Mary Sue due to misplaced cojones, then at least send someone to Indy who has a pair. I volunteer. I, like Yogi Bear, am not a gentle woodland creature. I am a Wolverine for life. Go Blue! Go Mary Sue—anywhere; just go. And the same to you, Rich Rod and Bill. Go to Halifax. Bring your Notre Dame, Tulane, Clemson, and West Virginia jackets with you. Did I forget one?

GAMENOTE: Denise Ilitch was not a Regent when I twice addressed The Regents and President Coleman so is exempt from my wrath; however, now that she is aware of the need for the NCAA to be confronted, she needs to step up to the plate and show she has what it takes not only to be a worthy Regent, but to be a worthy governor should she choose to throw her hat into the ring as many think she will. Please call her out on the issues I have raised if you see her on the campaign trail if she is still a Regent. As the daughter of a legendary sports enthusiast from Michigan, I hope she will do the right thing and acknowledge the need for U of M to stand up to the NCAA.








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