Saturday, August 31, 2019

Prognosticators, Prepare To Prognosticate. It’s Wolverine Day!

Who doesn’t love groundhog day?

Groundhog Day is based on the Pennsylvania Dutch superstition that if a groundhog (AKA woodchuck, rodent, garden destroyer) emerges from its burrow on February 2 and sees its shadow because the sun is shining, it will retreat to its den and winter will continue for (at least) six more weeks. Alternatively, if it’s cloudy and the little bugger doesn’t see its shadow, spring will arrive early.

While studies have found no consistent correlation between groundhog shadows and the subsequent arrival of spring-like weather, faith in its predictive value persists, just like the belief in cow fart-caused global warming endures, all evidence to the contrary.

But the problem I see, and hope to correct, is that there is no similar way to prepare ourselves for the onset of winter. If the MSM has taught us nothing else this past decade it is that we need to be prepared for bad weather ahead. There is currently no way to predict if summer will continue on course, gently morphing into a lovely Indian summer, or decide to take a hard steer head-on into winter.  So I made one up.

Today I’m launching the first ever Wolverine Day™ in which we will discover if the Wolverine predicts an abrupt arrival of winter or, alternatively, assures us 6 more weeks of summer followed by a gentle autumn. Fortunately nobody has to pull this sleeping rodent out of his hole, they emerge from the den on their own:

Image result for michigan wolverines run onto the football field

Nor do we have to wait for some guy in a top hat to translate a groundhog-ese haiku. Instead the prediction will be determined by the outcome of the University of Michigan Wolverines opening game today in the Peoples Republic of Ann Arbor: they win, summer continues, it’s just that simple.

I like summer, summer is good

But if Michigan loses, get your mukluks out.

Winter Comes Early

This year’s contest pits the Michigan Wolverines

(Please don’t confuse them with our cross-state rivals the Michigan State Spartans – they are GREEN for goodness sake!)

against the mighty Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders

I don’t want to trigger any investigations of collusion into the game’s outcome, but I have assembled a few fast facts about the teams:

The Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders are coached by Rick Stockstill, who started in 2006. Middle Tennessee has appeared in twelve bowl games and seven I-AA playoffs. The Blue Raiders play their home games at the Johnny "Red" Floyd Stadium which has a seating capacity of 30,788.

The University of Michigan Wolverines are coached by Jim Harbaugh, who was Michigan’s starting quarterback in the mid-80s under the legendary Bo Schembechler. Before returning to his alma mater 4 years ago he served as head coach of the San Francisco 49ers. The Wolverines have won a record 929 games and have the most all-time wins and the highest winning percentage in college football history. Michigan won the inaugural Rose Bowl in 1902, the first college bowl game ever played, and they have claimed 11 national titles. The Wolverines play their home games at Michigan Stadium, nicknamed "The Big House". It is the largest stadium in the United States, the second largest stadium in the world. Its official capacity is 107,601, but it has hosted crowds in excess of 115,000.

Michigan is rated #7 in NCAA preseason polls, the Blue Raiders are unranked.

MTSU’s sideline mascot is the Blue Raider, that looks like a cross between a flying unicorn and an evil Smurf.

Neither white nor red, the mascot’s color seems fairly inoffensive but “raiders” – doesn’t that sound a little…aggressive?

Michigan does not have a sideline mascot, but their actual mascot is, well,  the wolverine.


The game promises to be a nail biter, so root your heart out for your favorite team. Or if you don’t have a favorite team, root  for six more weeks of summer!

Because who doesn’t love summer, aside from a few of the MOTI who seem to have been born with a pathological love of cold, wet weather. You know who you are. I demand an apology.