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John Beilein (left) and Tom Izzo (right).
MGoBlog / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Under head coach Tom Izzo , the Spartans have been to 17 straight NCAA tournaments, made it to eight Final Fours and won it all in 2000 – while graduating 81% of his players. Not too shabby.

Tom Izzo talking to a referee
MGoBlog on Flickr / Flickr

Michigan State won against Michigan for the first time at Crisler Center since 2010. And with about three weeks until the NCAA unveils its tournament field of 68 for March Madness, the game had even more riding on it.

Courtesy photo / Michigan Department of Natural Resources

Michigan started tracking how many hunters die each year 1970. Since then, there has never been a year when no one died while hunting. But 2014 was a first. No fatalities and only ten injuries were reported.

FLICKR FRANK KOVALCHEK/FLICKR

Frida Waara takes on Marquette winters with gusto. She spoke with Stateside host Cyndy Canty about the “fantastic” season and the UP 200 Dog Sledding Championship event it brings. On Feb. 12-16, mushers will race a total of 240 miles, from Marquette to Grand Marais and back. Waara has done it before and says the race brings all sorts of people to compete. “It’s so cool because they come from wherever and they’re just bound together by a love for snow, the beauty of just being out on...

Left Shark, one of the Super Bowl's biggest stars.
Iain Heath / Flickr

Super Bowl Sunday has become an unofficial national holiday. Everybody can celebrate, no matter what your religion – or even if you don’t like football. So, let’s break it down, starting with the ads, which cost $4.5 million a pop.

nfl football on field
Flickr user Parker Anderson / Flickr

Superbowl 49 has passed and much of the resulting conversation has revolved around not the game itself but instead its breakout star: Left Shark. Michigan Radio sport commentator John U. Bacon says he's relieved that at least this new topic has allowed the discussion of “deflategate” to dissipate. "Deflategate was the most overblown issue of all time," says Bacon, "It amounts to almost nothing. It is truly hot air." Instead, Bacon expresses his hope that the media will now focus on more...

Screen capture from YouTube

For Throwback Thursday , we're revisiting a story we did last year on the invention of the snurfboard. MLive is marking Muskegon Community College's exhibition, 50th Anniversary of the Surfer's Invention , with a visual timeline of snurfing's contribution to snowboarding. Listen to our " Made In Michigan " interview with the snurfer's inventor, Sherm Poppen.

footballjobshq.com

Score big by scoring early. That’s the advice from a Michigan State University instructor to companies advertising during the Super Bowl. Every year, Robert Kolt hosts a Super Bowl party with others in the MSU advertising and public relations department. They focus more on the TV commercials than the game. Afterwards, they rate the best and the worst Super Bowl ads

Flickr user Keith Allison / Flickr

After it was discovered that 11 of the 12 game balls used by the New England Patriots during their victory against the Indianapolis Colts were deflated, the media created a new-found obsession over the PSI of a football, in a scandal dubbed " deflategate ."

Urban Meyer
MGoBlog on Flickr / Flickr

The Big Ten entered the bowl season battered from a brutal decade. How bad was it? Michigan’s sworn enemies, Michigan State and Ohio State, had given up hating the Wolverines.

Urban Meyer
MGoBlog on Flickr / Flickr

Ohio State University beat Oregon 42-20 in the inaugural College Football Playoff National Championship. Michigan Radio commentator John U. Bacon joined us to discuss the game.

A Detroit Lions game.
Rachel Kramer / Flickr

The Lions have lost to the Cowboys 13 times – so that’s not unusual. There are 31 other teams in the NFL, and 27 of them have winning records against the Lions.

Ohio state football player
Flickr user yuan2003 / Flickr

Is it ever appropriate for a Michigan or Michigan State fan to cheer for Ohio State? Ohio State is the underdog in next Monday's College Football Playoff National Championship game against Oregon.

Bentley Historical Library / University of Michigan

The private jet eased onto the airstrip at Detroit Metro Airport, just a few miles from where Charles Lindbergh once tested World War II bombers. This plane’s mission wasn’t nearly so serious. But the joy it gave to the people below might have exceeded just about everything since VJ Day. The jet’s cargo was James Joseph Harbaugh. He’s just a football coach, but he was doing exactly what many experts said he would never do: leave the bright lights of the NFL for the college towns of the Big Ten. This decision – mystifying to most NFL reporters -- explains why the masses might be forgiven if they mistook Harbaugh for their savior. But why did Harbaugh do it?

MGoBlog

Governor Rick Snyder has signed legislation that forbids athletes at public universities in Michigan from organizing a union. It was one of 17 bills signed today by the governor. The university athlete bill is an effort to preempt what happened at Northwestern University in Illinois, where football players at the private college voted last spring to form a union. There was no known similar effort at a Michigan university.

Tracy Samilton / Michigan Radio

Jim Harbaugh displayed a ready wit, apologized for some past mistakes, and refused to guarantee a win over Ohio State at his first press conference as head coach for the University of Michigan football program. The former San Francisco 49ers head coach and U of M star quarterback says he's dreamed about the job ever since he was a ball boy for the team, who once sat down at Bo Schembechler's desk and put his feet up on it. Now the coach's desk – and team – are his. Harbaugh introduced his...

Archimedo / Wikimedia commons

With snowfall in much of Michigan in November, ski areas got an early start to the season. “When it’s cold and snowy people go into the retail stores and buy things. So the retail sales were up early this year and our ski areas were able to open early. So yes it was a real, real good start,” said Mickey MacWilliams, executive director of the Michigan Snowsports Industries Association. She says there are a little more than 100 days, on average, that Michigan ski areas are open each winter....

MGoBlog

An analysis by Forbes' Chris Smith values the University of Michigan's football program at $117 million - behind Notre Dame ($122 million) and the Texas Longhorns ($131 million). Football teams are school entities, so they can't be bought or sold. Smith calculates the value of the program on four things:

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Brady Hoke grew up in Ohio, graduated from Ball State, and started his coaching career at Yorktown High in Indiana. He is a football man, through and through. In 1995, Hoke began an eight-year stint assisting Michigan, a run that included the Wolverines’ first national title since 1948. The coaches and players loved the guy.

The Wolverines have "arguably the best defense in the nation right now," Bacon told us.
Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Detroit News columnist Daniel Howes wrote today: "Another longtime CEO with scant athletic experience beyond his playing days is looking for yet another football coach at the University of Michigan."

Brady Hoke.
User MGoBlog / Flickr

Brady Hoke is now the former head football coach for the University of Michigan. Hoke's meeting with interim AD Jim Hackett produced the firing that so many fans expected and demanded.

Brady Hoke.
User MGoBlog / Flickr

Update: 6:00 p.m. This was not an easy choice. That's what interim Athletic Director Jim Hackett told reporters at the press conference earlier today after announcing that he'd fired head coach Brady Hoke.

Michigan Wolverines vs. Ohio State Buckeyes
MGoBlue / flickr.com

This Saturday brings one of the deepest, most storied rivalries in all of college sports: Michigan versus Ohio State, as the Wolverines head to Columbus. Bruce Geelhoed is a history professor at Ball State University. He's the author Bump Elliott: The Michigan Wolverines and Their Championship Football Season. The book looks at the 1964 season, and Geelhoed says the U of M-Ohio State game was important for both teams, as it would decide the Big Ten championship for that year. Geelhoed notes that Ohio State had been on a winning streak the previous decade, making this a must-win game for Michigan to reassert its claim as a strong team in the rivalry.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

This is shaping up to be a disappointing season for firearm deer hunters in the Upper Peninsula. An early-season storm and lake effect combined to dump more than three feet of snow in parts of the U.P. last week. Russ Mason is the chief of the Department of Natural Resources Wildlife Division. He says the deep snow is preventing hunters from reaching deer in the U.P. “You would need a four-wheeler with tracks or a snow machine, and guys just aren’t prepared for that,” says Mason. “I expect...

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Tens of thousands of deer hunters are in Michigan’s woods and fields this weekend. Michigan’s firearms deer season started today. Russ Mason is the chief of the wildlife division of the Michigan DNR. He says the herd is still recovering from a virus that killed thousands of deer in 2012. “(Bow) hunters are having pretty good reports seeing bigger bucks than they expected to see otherwise,” says Mason. Firearm deer season also means “bigger” bucks for Michigan retailers. Jay Poet is the...

Hockey net.
Dean Michaud / Flickr

It’s been a sad week for the University of Michigan hockey program. Last Friday, Michigan’s first three-time All-American, Wally Grant, passed away, at 86. Then on Monday, Grant’s teammate, Al Renfrew, who went on to coach the team for 16 years, died at 89. These two men made great contributions to Michigan hockey’s unequaled tradition. During World War II, the fortunes of a college hockey team didn’t amount to a hill of beans. The able-bodied were fighting in Europe and Asia, so Michigan’s roster shrunk. So did the schedule, from 20 games to eight. From 1940 to 1943, the Wolverines won exactly five games - total. The next year, a local newspaper warned, “Michigan May Remove Hockey From Athletic Program.”

The Wolverines have "arguably the best defense in the nation right now," Bacon told us.
Mark Brush / Michigan Radio

Michigan Radio sports commentator John U. Bacon joined us in the studio today to analyze what happened in Michigan sports this week. You can listen to our conversation with him below:

Dan4th Nicholas / Flickr

Look around the crowd at any Red Wings game. You’ll see plenty of fans wearing the #24 jersey, even though it’s been more than five years since Hall of Famer Chris Chelios skated for the Wings. Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock calls him “the greatest American player of all time.” Now we learn what his storied career was like from Number 24 himself: Chris Chelios’ memoir is titled "Made In America." Listen to Chelios discuss his memoir below.

Courtesy photo / Steelcase

On Nov. 17, 2006, Bo Schembechler died. He was 77. For Michigan fans, the bad news hasn’t ended. Second-ranked Michigan lost the next day’s game to top-ranked Ohio State, missing a shot at a national title. Then the Wolverines lost the next three straight, including the historic upset by Appalachian State. That was followed by Rich Rodriguez’s troubled three-year run, and now almost four years of Brady Hoke . After Hoke’s honeymoon season in 2011, the program has been sliding steadily...

Michigan Athletic Director Dave Brandon
Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

As virtually anyone who follows college sports knows by now, Dave Brandon is now the former Athletic Director at the University of Michigan. Retired Steelcase executive Jim Hackett is the interim AD as the University searches for Brandon's permanent replacement. When it comes to hires like these, the phrase "Michigan Man"comes up again and again. Dave Brandon played for Bo. He seemed to fit the template of a "Michigan Man." Michigan Radio's sports commentator John U. Bacon gives us his insight into what that phrase means. You can hear our conversation with Bacon below:

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