The mess up in Ann Arbor really has me thinking.
Remember back in 2001 when Coach Richt came into town with a new attitude and laid down the guantlet? Q-Dawg left on the first bus outta the Broad St Greyhound terminal. Fans heard rumblings of the new off-season workouts with the grueling mat drills. I don't know about you, but personally...I smiled.
Do you recall any players going all Headline News behind the CMRs back and complaining? Do you remember Boss Bailey or Jon Stinchcomb telling anyone with a Press pass that Van Halanger was just a big ol' meanie?
The answer is no. It really wasn't until October when one Hobnail Boot stomped away two decades of misery for the Dawgs in Knoxville that a realization set in for both fans and players.
"These guys really love each other, care about each other and will fight for each other," said Coach Richt back in Knoxville 2001. "There's just an unbelieveable chemistry on this team."
Given the opportunity to reflect back later on, CMR pointed to that game as the time his new players finally bought into his system. They then understood the spoils they could enjoy should they put in all the effort their coaches were asking of them.
It's not really news that a program has players who train and practice more than the NCAA "allows". But it's BIG news when the story originates from inside the locker room from current and former players. If it is found that Coach Rod assigned practice times to players outside of the authority on the NCAA, Michigan will face consequences.
But believe me when I say, that the bigger issue is that Coach Rod has players who have not bought into his system. They're upset at having to work too hard which is sad. They're talking to people outside the locker room about IT which is pathetic.
I guess hanging within a FG of Toledo last season wasn't enough to help them appreciate Coach Rod's system. Meanwhile, Dawg fans can be very thankful to have a coach who has the respect of his players and instills a strong work ethic...by strapping on a hobnail boot if necessary.