Wednesday, April 30, 2008

I've Got Beaver Fever!

Yes, I'm aware it's a groundhog - but it gets the job done well enough.

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.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Rod To Score With Beaver!

Post to come later tonight on the commitment of Shavodrick Beaver...but I had to stake my claim on that horrible pun NOW!

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Manningham's Lic Is Sick.

That's one lic he'll regret for a while

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

He Hath Soldeth His Soul!

I'll be wearing number 666! Haaaaaaaaaaaahahahahahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaa!

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

Autumn Thunder Turns One!

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!

Perhaps many of you reading this post are in the same position I was a little over a year ago - you have an urge to join the college football blogosphere but are unsure as to how to take the first step. My advice? Just take the plunge, baby!

If you're going to make that first post sometime soon, I hope that the lessons I've picked up this year can help you. Here's what I learned during my first year of semi-pro blogging:

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.

So, aside from that, here are a few other quick Do's and Don'ts I would suggest to a newbie blogger:

1) Have a shtick. Your site is a brand, and people will make return visits when they've identified something that you do which they like. Humor, inspiring prose, photoshop skills, analytical prowess - pick one that you can present well on a regular basis and run with it.
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 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,, 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.

Go Blue!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Simpson's Whereabouts A Mister-y.

Where do you think you're going, Mister?

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?

Monday, April 14, 2008

Plight of the Pater-gnomes.

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

Men Beware! "Leatherheads" Is A Chick Flick!

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

Despite "Blazing" Speed, Future Not "Bud"-ding.

*bubbling noises*

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

MSU - It's a Gas!

Spartans! What is your occupation?

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?

Friday, April 4, 2008

Who Cares Who The Quarterback Is?

Truth, Justice, and the Michigan Way!

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.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

AT Book Club: Every Week A Season.

Every Week I'm Snoozin'!

In the latest installment of the Autumn Thunder Book Club, I will be reviewing "Every Week A Season," a book by Brian Curtis that chronicles his journey across America during the 2003 football season while he hung out for a week with some of the biggest programs in the nation, such as Wisconsin, LSU, Georgia, Tennessee (you can see all the teams on the cover!), and a host of others. Lloyd Carr wrote the forward - that's probably the most appealing part of the book to a Michigan fan, since Michigan was not chronicled during any of the weeks. I wonder why ([cough cough] Lloyd Carr hates the media [cough cough])?

The potential for this book was huge - but it fell short of what I hoped it would be. I wanted interesting team gossip, a really good description of what the players were like, and something other than the usual cookie cutter "this team is great - rah rah rah" writing that most sports writers are forced to do in exchange for inside access. Every week is presented in the same predictable order:

1) Intro about team and season for team thus far.
2) Talk about coach.
3) Talk about University and surrounding areas.
4) Describe what coaching staff does for a week in meetings and practice
5) Throw in some colorful quotes from media or players.
6) Really boring game recap
7) Conclusion with moral from the coach at the end.

There was nothing really notable in this book, and nothing of substance stayed with me after I finished reading it. It was a literary version of an ESPN "inside look" they play during halftime - semi-interesting for the time being, but completely forgettable when its through.

After the third week, I was ready to put this book down because it was so pedestrian. But dammit, I paid a nickel for it, and I was going to get my money's worth. I chugged through it for a few more subway rides.

Buy or skip? If you're a commuter, are missing football as much as I am, and have a nickel, it can't hurt. Don't buy it if it costs more than a buck.


Don"t Click Here