Wrong Franz Ferdinand.
On June 28, 1914, Franz Ferdinand, the Archduke of Austria, was traveling by motorized carriage through Sarajevo, Serbia. It was then that Gavrilo Princip, a member of a separatist organization called the Black Hand, ran up to his car and shot him dead. Because a Serb had killed the heir to its throne, Austria declared war on Serbia. Russia, an ally of Serbia, declared war on Austria. Germany came to Austria's aid, which drew in France and England. And that, my friends, was the beginning of World War I, which eventually led to the death of more than 10 million people. The whole thing went down because of a single shot and a massive misunderstanding.
A couple of nights ago, I wrote a post you may have read implying Rich Rodriguez was in the pocket of the Iranians, among other things (I'm not going to link it; just scroll down). The post was meant as satire, aimed primarily at people who have jumped to conclusions on either side of Shredgate. I'll admit, it was subtle, and some could construe it to be an attack on Michigan football. In any case, it drew a scathing response from Brian at MGoBlog (which has since been retracted, so I'm not linking that, either; you can find it if you want). Austria had crossed our border. I am the Black Hand.
Emails were exchanged. Fuck-ups were acknowledged by both sides. We had some fun with the MGoBlog commentariat. Brian posted a much-appreciated retraction. Everyone went to bed under a blanket of peace.
Still, I'd be remiss if I didn't post an apology of my own. BHGP is a hobby for us. We are obsessed with Iowa athletics, and we're smartasses, and so we write smartass things about Iowa athletics. We relentlessly follow Big Ten athletics, and so we write smartass things about Big Ten athletics, as well. We compare Big Ten teams to cars and presidential candidates. We draw stick figures of Sean Sonderleiter. While other blogs are talking about the strengths and weaknesses of Big Ten basketball teams, we're writing as Robert Goulet. We're not journalists, and we're analysts only by accident. We may love this stuff, but we generally don't pretend we know anything about it.
There are blogs that do know everything about it. There are blogs that tell you everything you need to know and remain entertaining as hell (novel concept, I know). At the top of that list is MGoBlog, which brings it every day of the year. Brian is so good at what he does, I truly believe I know as much or more about his program as I do about my own. In this business (and, for him, it's exactly that; he's good enough to get that full-time blogging job we all wish we had), he's among the best.
He's a God in this world, and a benevolent one at that. His recommendation alone can put you on the map. Nine months ago, I was posting twice weekly to a blogspot address with 20 hits per day. At some point, MGoBlog came across my little corner of cyberspace and put me in the blogroll, no questions asked, no repayment required. It's the primary reason I had enough readers to make the jump to BHGP in the first place. He repeatedly says his ideas (UHF, Vicious Electronic Questioning, a multitude of others) are available for anyone who wants to rip them off. He'll invite you in to talk football, even when Michigan's playing someone other than Iowa. He'll answer any question you have, technical or otherwise. And he was the first one to post the J Leman photo.
Of course we're posting it. Don't be ridiculous.
Suffice it to say, I would never intentionally attack MGoBlog (unless he did something monumentally stupid, like praise the nuance of the Ken O'Keefe offense). I appreciate his understanding, I appreciate his retraction, and I apologize for any ill-will created by this misunderstanding.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I've been working on this "Jacob Jaaks walks into a bar" joke...