Hello AT Readers,
Monday, December 15, 2008
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Dear AT Readers,
I know I have been neglecting to blog on a regular basis lately. There is a good reason for this - I am actually more excited about and involved in my own life than obsessing over football players who I will probably never meet.
After a lot of consideration, I have decided to end regular posting on Autumn Thunder. It's not that I don't enjoy blogging anymore - God knows I had a lot of fun writing ridiculous material and polluting the blogosphere with second-rate Photoshop work. But, over the past few months, my life has gotten a lot more interesting and enjoyable outside the blog.
This fall, I'll be running 3 half marathons in 3 different states. I'm also running my first full marathon in Disney World in January. I'm most excited about training for my first Ironman half-triathlon which will be next summer.
There's also a super-secret project which I've been working on for the last few months which I can't discuss publically at this time - but it has the potential to be life-changingly awesome. I'll let you know how that one works out when the time is right.
All these things, combined with the time I spend with my lovely girlfriend and awesome dog leave little time for blogging these days. I don't want to be a sporadic poster and shake things up on an irregular basis - I'd rather leave Autumn Thunder at peace. I'll leave the site open for people to poke around for a while.
I still get a lot of enjoyment out of reading all the wonderful Michigan blogs out there, and will continue to take part in our little universe in the comment sections of the many sites that are way better than mine ever was. The vast blogosphere we have is a fitting tribute to the intelligence, wit, and ingenuity of Michigan football fans, and the love and devotion which our team engenders in all of us.
Thanks J*, for bearing with my blogging and for not being too grumpy when I chose posting and photoshop over you. Thanks for all the Michigan bloggers out there, espcially Brian, who linked my work and inspired me to write in the first place. And most importantly, thank you, AT readers, for making this a very fun part of my life for the last year and half.
For now, I bid you adieu.
Adam aka The Cowbell Commander
Labels: parting is such sweet sorrow
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Along with the luxury boxes which will be up by 2010, Big Billy Dollaz has found another way to generate a little bit of extra cash for the athletic department: seats with chairbacks. Wealthy Michigan fans will no longer have to endure three hours of lower-lumbar discomfort and can lean back without getting a knee in the spine like the rest of the average Joes at Michigan Stadium. While the chairback seats have not received the same amount of attention as the luxury boxes, they are still a luxury worth considering if one has a measly $2,000 per seat lying around.
Dollaz sees the value in these "small luxuries" and upon the advice of his financial advisor, Nick Elandime, plans to expand on the program.
"Yo yo yo! If a chair ain't got no back, that shizzle is wack!" Explained Dollaz. "This is just the tip of the iceberg, dawg. I'ma start charging for a whole lot more for the little niceties in life, like Oxygen. Fans that be wantin' some 02 in their section of the stadium are gonna have to donate $0.001/per breath taken inside the Big House starting in the 2009 season. Also, if fans want to wear jackets past September, there will be a $5.00 per coat per quarter of football surcharge. Those puffy jackets cramp up the stadium, which means I can't sell as many tickets because it's too crowded. This will make up for lost revenue. Wooooooooooooooooooooood up!"
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
One of the pre-season stories to which we have been subjected most frequently is Terrance Taylor's transformation from cranky fatty to Barwis wunderkind. I'm glad Terrance has bought in to the program, but if he doesn't rip offensive linemen limb from limb this fall on a regular basis, many people may see him as a dissapointment after all the hype over the last few months. On the whole, it is beneficial for college football players to be the subject of pre-season hype, especially before their senior year so they can get some street cred going into the season when NFL scouts will be watching them closer than ever before. But, the higher they are, the farther they can fall.
In 3 short weeks, I hope somebody makes Terrance Taylor angry. Michigan fans will like it when he's angry...
Labels: Terrance Taylor
Thursday, July 31, 2008
This was a big two weeks for outstandingly-talented yet academically-challenged defensive tackles. After three years trying to become academically eligible, Jerrel Powe has finally made it past the NCAA clearinghouse and can play for the Ole Miss Rebels. On the opposite side of the fence, our "Lion King" Marques Slocum has unfortunately flamed out and will probably not play college football for the forseeable future.
After hitting the books for three long years, Powe is probably a guy who knows what an opportunity like this means to him. If he plays well and doesn't screw up off the field, he is probably going to be a multi-millionaire in 2-3 years. As Brian has mentioned before, some kids are built for one thing and one thing only: football. If not for football, Powe would probably be stuck in a lower-middle-class lifestyle while working as unskilled labor somewhere in the South. Now, because he has a shot to capitalize on his greatest strength, he has the opportunity to live a life that most of us only fantasize of living. Good luck this year, Mr. Powe. You've earned your shot.
Marques Slocum was only two years away from paydirt. He showed promise his freshman year, and if he had solid sophomore and junior seasons, he'd probably be taking home a lion's share of NFL draft money in 2011. I'll never understand some people. All that talent and then they screw it all up. Maybe he'll pop up at a lower-tiered BCS school in a year or two, or some FBS team will take him on next year. He'll have to pass the clearinghouse again, which may be a bar he can't hurdle. Slocum may have destroyed his chances for living the good life - and if he says he regrets the way he acted this summer, I'll be he's not lion.
Labels: Marques Slocum
Friday, July 25, 2008
These days, Big Billy Dollaz has a dilemma - he has to make it rain for both Rodriguez and Beilein, but money doesn't grow on trees. On one hand, Dollaz is now obliged to help Rich Rodriguez pay off his WVU buyout. On the other hand, he has promised John Beilein that he would overhaul Crisler Arena. I know Dollaz is a master funderaiser and somewhat of a fiscal boy-wonder, but this is a lot of cash. Either Rodriguez or Beilein is going to get the shaft here.
I think we all know which one is going to get it.
There are three reasons why John Beilein is going to suffer because of Rodriguez's buyout.
1) John Beilein is not as attractive as a coach right now and will be put on the backburner. After a really poor first year at Michigan, Beilein's stock has dropped since his tenure ended at WVU. It is likely that the upcoming basketball season will be a tough one, and that Beilein will be labled as "not getting the job done." If there ever was a year for Dollaz to stall on appeasing Beilein, this is the year. Beilein has no leverage.
2) Football is king at Michigan, and Dollaz is very cognizant of the program that is going to bring the athletic department the most loot. Rodriguez will be kept happy in order for the team to be running on all cylindars and bringing home the bacon at full capacity.
3) Rich Rod is more aggressive. He seems like the type of guy who will never let someone else get in the way of what he wants or something he thinks he deserves.
So, Coach Beilein...hope you're good with a broom and dustpan.
Saturday, July 19, 2008
In the past few weeks, Brian has posted The All-Lloyd Carr Team, and valiantly attempted to do an Anti-Carr team. Keeping with that spirit, Autumn Thunder proudly presents...
QB: Brian Griese
Before Griese quarterbacked Michigan to the 1997 National Championship, he had a little incident at Scorekeepers which culminated in his arrest for the felony of malicious destruction of property.
Disciplinary Action: Indefinite suspension (later reinstated, obv.)
RB: Kelly Baraka
Baraka's career was cut short before he really had a chance to shine after his second arrest for possession of Mary Jane.
Disciplinary Action: Kicked off the team; banished to football obscurity.
WR: Adrian Arrington
Adrian Arrington was mired in a controversy which involved domestic abuse and possible grand-theft auto.
Disciplinary Action: Long suspension; many hours of stadium step running.
WR: Mario Manningham
During his third year at Michigan, Manningham couldn't help smoking the magic plant.
Disciplinary Action: 1 game suspension
TE: Carson Butler
Carson Butler was involved in the Saint Patrick's Day massacre where a student was beaten within inches of his life.
Disciplinary Action: Temporarily kicked off team.
LT: Adam Stenavich
Adam Stenavich got a little cranky at a bar one night and was arrested under charges of disorderly conduct.
Disciplinary Action: Suspension
Larry Harrison was arrested after had a little trouble keeping the mouse in the house. EWW!
Disciplinary Action: Kicked off team; banished to football obscurity.
DE: Eugene Germany
Like Manningham, Germany couldn't say no to dope. While it was unclear if this was the straw that broke the camel's back or it was related to another incident, Germany was kicked off the team after this infraction.
Disciplinary Action: Kicked off team; banished to football obscurity.
CB: Johnny Sears
Aside from sucking, Johnny Sears got caught with pot one too many times.
Disciplinary Action: Kicked off team; banished to football obscurity.
CB: Chris Richards
Richards was the third member of the terrible trio who assualted a student on St. Patrick's Day 2007.
Disciplinary Action: Kicked off team; banished to football obscurity.
I'm sure this list is incomplete...please help me fill in the holes!
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
I'm back! I'm still trying to find a workable copy of Photoshop, but I got my computer back from the Geek Squad and posting shall resume on a regular schedule once again.
I rented a copy of NCAA 2009 because every video game store in my neighborhood had sold out of them yesterday. While I haven't tried the online dynasty mode yet because I didn't sign up for XBox Live, the single player mode is enjoyable, though largely the same from previous years. I think the fluid motion animations and wide open game play were a bit over hyped because while the players do move a little better than in year's past, it does not feel substantially different.
As Brian noted earlier, it is nearly impossible to tackle somebody. Sometimes, it seems like every player on the field has a Mike Hart-like tackle-breaking persistence and won't go down without a second tackler. The college atmosphere is emphasized more with gratuitous cut scenes of cheerleaders doing flips and waving the school flag after big plays.
There are a few errors with the Michigan team that I was kind of surprised to see. There are a few players whose numbers are wrong (Steven Threet wears #15, Sam McGuffie wears #34), and most shocking, Sam McGuffie is purple. He looks like a version of Grimace on steroids. He is fast and nimble, though, and I have made him hurdle people multiple times to great delight.
A notably great thing EA Sports did was nail Michigan's away uniforms before they were released to the public. They look just like the ones that were revealed to the world a few days ago, right down to the maize stripes on the side and back.
I'd say this is a solid game, and let's face it...we're all going to buy it anyway.
Who wants to be in the Autumn Thunder online dynasty league? Any takers?
Labels: NCAA 09
Friday, July 11, 2008
Hello AT Readers,
You may wonder where the hell I've been these last two weeks. Unfortunately, my laptop went haywire almost 10 days ago and it is being “repaired” by the Best Buy Geek Squad. I say “repaired” because these idiots wiped my entire hard drive clean while re-installing Windows and removing all the computer gremlins…and they deleted all my programs including my trusty bootlegged copy of Photoshop!
I hope I’ll be back this weekend.
Labels: life sucks
Saturday, June 28, 2008
I just saw Wall*E last night, and I enthusiastically recommend it without hesitation. It was one of the best movies I've seen in the last few years. After seeing it, I realized Chad Henne was a lot like Wall*E. His heart was always in the right place, and if he screwed something up, you always forgave him because he redeemed himself later. Wall*E and Henne both share a never-say-die attitude which allow them to overcome formidable obstacles, such as defeating evil robots while working with broken parts and defeating the Fighting Illini while working with broken parts, respectively.
Man, I'll miss that robot.
Labels: Chad Henne
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
In a move that shocked many today, Bill Martin has announced his plans to fund the renovations to Crisler Arena:
A bomb-ass bake sale.
"Yo yo yooooooooooooo! We're gon' do this the old school way. And by old school, I mean elementary school." remarked Big Billy Dollaz. "Check me! When you were in fifth grade and needed to raise some money to go on your class trip, what did y'all do? You got yoself into the kitchen and started making brownies! True? True. So we're doing that, only we're takin' it to the next level. Shizzle!"
When asked how the bomb-ass bake sale would raise nearly 40 million dollars, Martin replied, "Aight, Aight, I got it covered. I know we'll hit the mark. I already got an order from South Bend, Indiana from an anonymous buyer for 5 million dollars' worth of double chocolate chunk cookies. Pretty soon we'll be able to make it rain faster than Pac at a bachelor party. WORD!"
Monday, June 23, 2008
I tried really hard to get my magnum opus up last night, but I decided it just wasn't ready. Have you ever worked a long time to get something done, missed the deadline, and in the end, rather than submit some half-assed piece of shlock, decide it was better to hold off and present it to the world as you wish it to be seen?
That's what happened this weekend. Check back later tonight. If Mikey's reaction means anything to you, this will be glorious.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Hello AT Readers,
It's been a long few weeks for me. Thankfully, life has calmed down and things are getting back to normal. I shall return this Sunday night with a post that will change the face of the Michigan blogosphere forever, probably for the worse.
Thursday, May 29, 2008
I must confess, these last few days have sucked and I apologize for the lack of content. I'm in the process of moving and my life has been turned upside down. I'm half moved in to a new apartment, still have things in my old one, and basically everything surrounding me is a giant clusterf*ck of disorganization. I hate living like this and don't expect to post much until my life is back in working order. Furthermore, I am working on other extremely important non-blog projects to which I must devote my full attention during the coming weeks. I'll be back around the middle of June.
Rest assured that when I come back, I'm coming back strong. I hope you don't give up on me during my sabbatical - but there are like a million other Michigan blogs for you in the meantime. I'll miss writing more than you'll miss reading.
Labels: life sucks
Tuesday, May 20, 2008
A few weeks ago I was fortunate enough to go to the NYC stop of the Rich Rodriguez on the Road tour. While I was there, I couldn't resist the opportunity get a picture with Big Billy Dollaz himself. I didn't have the cojones to ask for a solo picture with BBD because of the large crowd and general chaos which was following Dollaz wherever he went, but thankfully AT VIP Gary played Kramer to my Jerry and we got a picture for the ages.
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
By now, most of us know that Rich Rodriguez's deposition has been released for our reading pleasure. Will this solve anything? While I have no legal experience, my gut leads me to believe:
1) Neither Rodriguez or WVU is going to budge on their stance in the near future.
2) After much bitterness and lawyer's fees, Rodriguez and WVU will eventually just settle the buyout sometime over the summer and get on with their lives.
Now while the potential settlement will probably be less than $4,000,000, it will most likely still be a hefty chunk of change. The question is: will Bill Martin throw a few bucks Rodriguez's way in order to soften the blow - and should he be obliged to? Is there any negative ramifications for Michigan if Bill Martin tells Rodriguez he's on his own?
Thoughts por favor.
Sunday, May 11, 2008
Sorry for the lack of posting this week. I got caught up in a great new book and I just couldn't seem to put it down. What was the captivating material, you ask? It's "To Hell With Calories," a new book written by Charlie Weis describing his exceptional diet and lifestyle. Some people may find some of Weis' favorite recipes unconventional. Take for example, the triple Butterfinger cupcakes topped with melted Swedish Fish (p.47) While the calorie count is nearly 900 per serving, they do sound scrumptious. Other tasty, yet potentially dangerous recipes include the deep-fried M&M encrusted butter sticks and licorice battered in chocolate syrup.
Perhaps the most interesting part of the book is the exercise regimen that accompanies the recipes. Not being one to waste time, Weis advocates doing chin-ups to speed up the workout. "For every chin you have, you get that chin-ups many done per rep. So every time I pull myself up, I count six reps. It really gets you to that post-workout snack much more quickly."
Buy or skip? I say skip. Even though the things Weis says do sound nice, it will probably just get you really bloated, fat, lazy, and let you down in the end.
Labels: Autumn Thunder Book Club
Sunday, May 4, 2008
Autumn Thunder is totally stoked to leak the first bit of news regarding the recruiting features in NCAA 2009: the premier of the Recruiting Shenanigans feature. An anonymous source at EA sports has passed me this unofficial (and admittedly low-quality) screen shot, and to say the least, the recruiting season in NCAA 2009 will be much more entertaining than in years past. While in previous editions, players had to go through five mind-numbing weeks of convincing players to sign their letters of intent based on the virtues of academics, campus lifestyle, playing time and the like, gamers now have more options. Do you think you could have convinced a young man like Ryan Perriloux to sign with you because of campus tradition? Noooooooo. Could guys like Chris Henry and Pacman Jones be persuaded to join your team based on your student section? Ha! Good one.
These days, you need to promise some players a little something extra, and EA is finally incorporating this pink elephant into the recruiting area of their games. Easy professers? Drugs? Guns? It's in the game!
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Move over Mister Simpson, Tim Biakabatuka, and all you other former players with odd but cool names! Shavodrick Beaver has just claimed the title of "greatest name of any Michigan football player, past, present, and future." Shavodrick, you've got it made. You can throw for zero yards a game, get sacked twice a drive, fumble like there's no tomorrow and be king of the three and out - or be the hottest quarterback ever to wear the winged helmet. No matter what you do, people will remember your name forever.
Labels: Shavodrick Beaver
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Sunday, April 27, 2008
During the past few months, my opinion of Mario Manningham's character has been declining steadily because of all the recent developments in the news. However, when I found out that Manningham scored a six out of fifty on his Wonderlic test, my esteem of the receiver formerly known as The New Math dropped like one of the balls he tried to catch in the Ohio State game.
Mario apparently has two brain cells - one for smoking pot, the other for catching footballs. As long as the NFL team which picks him can keep brain cell numero uno in check, I think things will be alright.
But a six? Good Lord. How did he ever pass a class at Michigan?
Wednesday, April 23, 2008
There's not much that needs to be said at this point, except that Boren is a treacherous, whiny, ungrateful, lazy, sniveling, opportunistic, selfish, disloyal, sucky, stinky, stupid man.
Sunday, April 20, 2008
Time really flies when you're having fun. It's hard to believe that it's been a year since my first post on Autumn Thunder. It all started with a man, a bootlegged copy of photoshop, and a dream. Now Autumn Thunder is a multi-hundred dollar enterprise which has earned me four free beers from people who read the site. Capital!
The most important rule of blogging in the Michigan blogosphere is knowing that Brian Cook is your personal Jesus. It's true! The man can triple your traffic for a day or two with a single link, and mad traffic is to be had if you can concoct something interesting enough to make his sidebar. Because of his tireless work and his undisputed reign as the best blog in our community, I humbly and willingly accept the fact that one man can largely determine how my work is recieved by others.
2) Comment on other blogs. Aside from being an active member in the blogosphere, the links you leave in your comments may indirectly bring traffic to your site. How serendipitous!
3) Give props to other bloggers when they post genius work. We don't do it for the money, folks (well...some people are so good that they can) so when you see that a colleague has put up first rate post, let them know that you've noticed and that you admire their efforts. It means a lot to me when I get a congratulatory note from The MZone or MVictors.com in my inbox.
4) Stick to it. Yes, posting 3-4 times a week is sometimes a challenge. But it's quite rewarding, kind of like getting up at 6 AM to run each day. I have mucho respect for the bloggers who play ball week in and week out - and the utmost respect for those who keep it going strong during the nine-month barren wasteland of the off-season.
1) Regurgitate material from official news sources. Since most people who are active blogosphere readers also read the Freep, The Daily, SI.com...etc., re-writing the work of others is both lazy and lame. Blogs are great because of their original thoughts and opinions.
2) Give up after a few months of low traffic. It takes time to build a decent daily following! Though the first month or two may be filled with double digit days, if you post quality material, people will check the site more often than you'd think. If you blog it, they will come.
3) Post and ghost. It's bad blog etiquette to routinely go without posting for long periods of time without notice to your readers. It's one of the surest ways to get deleted from another blogger's blogroll or deleted from a reader's list of daily bookmarks.
I'm no pro by any means, and I still have a lot to learn about amateur sports blogging (like how to get those cool text boxes inside my posts.). But for now, I just want everyone who reads this to know I'm grateful and flattered that you find my work worth your valuable time, and if you have the urge to start your own Michigan football blog, there's no time like the present.
Thursday, April 17, 2008
Today, a random thought came to mind - whatever happened to our favorite oddly-named running back, Mister Simpson? I checked the Cincinnati Bearcats football roster and Mister is nowhere to be found. I know that he was academically ineligable for the 2007 season, but the roster shows the players for 2008. Did Mister finally call it quits? Does anyone know the real scoop?
Labels: Mister Simpson
Monday, April 14, 2008
Joe Paterno is an institution in college football - but Penn State's program has been overwhelmingly mediocre during the last decade (save the 2005 season). As most of us know by now, many Nittany Lion fans are clamoring for a regime change. However, Penn State's failure to either a) gracefully remove Paterno from his post b) announce a retirement timeline or c) make a succession plan is going to kill the PSU program. What elite recruit would sign with PSU without knowing what his future will hold? Without a solid recruiting class on a regular basis, any program will flounder. The longer Paterno stays on top with no indication of stepping down, the worse the PSU program will be. This year may mark the beginning of a serious decline in PSU football.
Saturday, April 12, 2008
Logically expecting "Leatherheads" to be full of old-timey football hijinks and slapstick hilarity, I was a bit disappointed when I found myself watching a romantic comedy disguised as a movie about 1920's football. The football action was good when it was onscreen and the atmosphere of the prohibition-era was recreated well, but the dialogue was so cheesy even I cringed with disgust - and that's saying a lot!
Movie studio marketing executives, you win this round. Fool me once...shame on you!
Wednesday, April 9, 2008
Yes, I know that many people have already covered this today. But you know I couldn't let an opportunity like this to go by and not contribute a little. I hope Manningham gets his act together after he gets drafted somewhere. There's too far too much talent there and money to be made to smoke it all away.
Sunday, April 6, 2008
Hooray for offeason shenanigans! While this story is not officially football related, any chance to take a potshot at Sparty is never too off-topic. Today, 28 MSU students were arrested at a massive party for assaulting police officers. The officers had to teargas the crowd in order to break up the mayhem.
Do they think they're Ohio State or something?
Labels: Michigan State
Friday, April 4, 2008
Over the last few weeks, there have been numerous articles about how Michigan's quarterback status is still unknown, and that even a walk-on might win the job. You know what I say to that?
Who cares who the quarterback is?!? JUST GET THE DAMN BALL TO SAM McGUFFIE!
That's right - no matter which quarterback is playing, we're all better off by letting Sam McGuffie work his whiteboy gangsta magic and hurdle, juke, and spin around people on the way to the end zone.
Offensive line gonna majorly suck this year? It's best to give the ball to a guy who can get the hell out of dodge in the blink of an eye - not let a quarterback stand in the pocket to be eaten alive by a pack of defensive linemen and defensive ends.
People might say the quarterback will be inexperienced and will have trouble learning a whole new offensive system. No worries, good sir. Whoever the quarterback is, they'll only have to learn one play - the handoff to Sam McGuffie.
Sam McGuffie is the answer to every problem which may arise this year. Thank you, Football Jesus, for delivering him to us.
Labels: Sam McGuffie