Cover image of John U. Bacon
(2)
Sports

John U. Bacon

Updated 5 days ago

Sports
Read more

Every Friday, author and sports commentator John U. Bacon offers up his thoughts and views on the sports stories going on around our region.

Read more

Every Friday, author and sports commentator John U. Bacon offers up his thoughts and views on the sports stories going on around our region.

iTunes Ratings

2 Ratings
Average Ratings
2
0
0
0
0

iTunes Ratings

2 Ratings
Average Ratings
2
0
0
0
0
Cover image of John U. Bacon

John U. Bacon

Updated 5 days ago

Read more

Every Friday, author and sports commentator John U. Bacon offers up his thoughts and views on the sports stories going on around our region.

Rank #1: Big Ten football suffers from a lack of leadership

Podcast cover
Read more
In 1895, the presidents of seven Midwestern universities met at the Palmer House Hotel in Chicago to form what we now call the Big Ten. They created the world’s first school-based sports organization, predating even the NCAA. Soon the rest of the country’s colleges and high schools followed suit, forming their own leagues based on the Big Ten model. The uniquely American marriage of academics and athletics – something no other country would even consider -- had been officially consummated. The Big Ten quickly established itself as the nation’s premier conference on the football field, too, and kept it up for decades. From 1900 to 1970, Big Ten teams won 39 national titles – more than one every two years. When the Rose Bowl started pitting the Big Ten against the Pac-10 in 1948, the Big Ten won 11 of the first 12. Sometimes the Big Ten would send its runner up – and that team would crush the Pac-10 champion, too. The Big Ten’s hey-day looked like it would never end. This was the fifties

Sep 19 2014

3mins

Play

Rank #2: Michigan athletics loses magic and fans thanks to Brandon's policies

Podcast cover
Read more
L ast week, Michigan Athletics admitted student football ticket sales are down —from about 21,000 two years ago to just 13,000 this fall. How’d Michigan lose so many students so fast? A lot of hard work. Athletic Director Dave Brandon has often cited the difficulty of using cell phones at Michigan Stadium as "the biggest challenge we have." But when Michigan students ranked seven factors for buying season tickets, they ranked cell phones dead last. What did they rank first? Being able to sit with their friends.

Jun 06 2014

4mins

Play

Rank #3: Advisers aren't doing Michael Sam any favors

Podcast cover
Read more
When Michael Sam told his University of Missouri teammates he was gay before last season, it wasn’t a big deal. It’s a safe bet that NFL teams – who know what kind of gum their prospects chew – already knew this, too. But when Sam came out publicly, it changed the equation. The NFL has already had gay players, so that’s not new. But publicly declaring you’re gay is new – and so is the onslaught of media attention. After Sam came out, he dropped from a projected fourth- or fifth-rounder to the seventh and final round. Part of the reason was surely homophobia – though that term isn’t accurate. To paraphrase Morgan Freeman, “If you’re homophobic, you’re not afraid of homosexuals. You’re just an A-hole.” But the NFL teams that passed on Sam probably had other reasons, too. Yes, Sam was named defensive player of the year in the Southeastern Conference, but he’s not a complete player. He’s great at sacking quarterbacks, but not at covering the run. At the NFL Combine, his numbers for speed

May 23 2014

3mins

Play

Rank #4: Why hockey fans should still savor the Red Wings' season

Podcast cover
Read more
Wednesday night the Detroit Red Wings lost their final playoff game of the season to the Chicago Blackhawks, breaking the hearts of hockey fans across Michigan. But according to Michigan Radio Sports Commentator John U. Bacon, it was still a series to savor. Most sports fans are happy just to see their team make the playoffs. But Detroit Red Wings fans have been able to take that for granted for a record 22 straight seasons. The last time the Red Wings didn’t make the playoffs, 1990, not one current NHL player was in the league. Some of the current Red Wings weren’t born. Nine current franchises weren’t yet created. But the record seemed doomed to be broken this season.

May 31 2013

3mins

Play

Rank #5: Bacon: Michigan, MSU football paths diverge midseason

Podcast cover
Read more
Michigan and Michigan State both entered this season ranked in the top twenty. Both have struggled on offense, and lost some games along the way. But by the end of October, their paths seemed to have diverged. Michigan State has lost three straight, while Michigan finally found its way with a big win over Notre Dame. The Spartans started the season ranked 20th , and were expected to compete for the Big Ten East Division title. But it was quickly apparent the 2019 offense wasn’t any better than the previous year’s anemic model – and might actually be worse. Instead of hiring a credible offensive coordinator, head coach Mark Dantonio keeps playing musical chairs with the coaches he already has, moving this guy to that position, and that guy to this one – which hasn’t made anything better. To be fair, the Spartans just finished one of the toughest months in college football. They faced three straight top ten teams -- Ohio State, Wisconsin, and Penn State -- two of which have already

Nov 01 2019

2mins

Play