It's Friday. Pre-game. That used to mean something here in Ann Arbor. Quiet time. Concentration time. Pad-free walk thrus, just to keep the timing where it needs to be. Obviously, last week in lieu of these things, it was "fun time." Worry free time. Appalachian State time. We will wear them down. They have inferior athletes. They have an inferior gameplan. They have an inferior school with inferior students and a mascot that looks like the guy from that Pirates movie. Where are they from? Nowhere. Who's on their team? Nobody. They brought their band? Wow. I can't believe they field a band, or can afford to ship those derelicts out here.
But now it's different. Or at least it should be.
There is something I've noticed over the past week, and I can't decide if it's just talk or if it's what this team believes. Now, I think it's important for the team to feel like they have something to play for, that it's not over. And it may not be over. But it's paramount that this team realizes what they did. That it WAS NOT OK. That everything is not going to be alright on it's own. Everything is different now. Everything NEEDS to be different now.
...there is a ton of football to play and a ton of games to go so it's actually just beginning. Sure, we had a loss but we have to go forward, we have to get ready for Oregon and that's what we're concentrating on. We were disappointed but we played hard. We made some mistakes and they are correctable. We're getting ready for Oregon and we know the mistakes we made we need to correct and I think we'll be a lot better next week and ready to go." - Will Johnson
Makes it sound like we just got edged out by Ohio State...instead of that we just embarrassed the shit out of ourselves and we need to work harder, play harder, and be smarter. Smarter is the key, because you can't teach speed, you can't "correct" speed. We don't have the speed, we've never had the speed...so we need to be smarter.
History repeats itself repeating itself...
Two years ago we lost two quick games right off the bat. We lost to Notre Dame and Iowa and there is something that changes at practice and there is a mindset that changes. I remember that year we just felt we weren't going to lose another game even when we had come-from-behind victories, we had the mindset that we weren't going to lose."
Great mindset, except that this quote is from Tyler Ecker in 2005. He alludes to 2003. Now it's 2007. We refuse to learn. Can't start, can't finish....can't can't can't. I want that "we're not going to lose" mindset in place on August 1st, and removed on January 7th. Can I get that? Just once?
Michigan Football has been reset. And what happens from this point forward will be it's legacy. We have lived and rested on our laurels for the better part of 10 years. The 1997 National Championship, the most wins, the best win percentage, and the largest stadium. But none of these things are going to beat Oregon. None of these things are going to beat Notre Dame or Penn State.
Our history is now. We are the team that has lost their last three games. We are the team that has lost three in a row and 5 out of 6 to Ohio State. We are the team that has lost their last four bowl games. We are the team that lost to Appalachian State. You have to start somewhere. I only hope that when this weekend ends, we're the team that beat Oregon.