Thursday, January 22, 2009

A Quick MSU Preview

No 10 Things this week, since I just wrote one about them like a month ago. A few quick things about the Spartans though:

MSU has gotten it together somewhat after going winless for 11 games (12 if you count losing to the NTDP...again). They've had 3 straight split weekends, beating North Dakota, losing to us, splitting with Alaska, and splitting with Miami.

They're still bad--they got outshot 60-13 in Saturday's game against Miami--but they're also not the doormat they were at the start of the year and they're perfectly capable of stealing one. Particularly since Michigan hasn't shown an ability to take care of business against the teams at the bottom of the standings.

MSU has given up a single goal in each of their three wins (and it's a good thing Lerg was on, because they scored just two goals in two of the wins), but they've given up 5, 3 (to Alaska, which is like giving up 5), and 6 goals in the losses.

Matt Schepke leads the team with 15 points (10-5--15). He and Leveille are the only two with more than 5 goals, and they've each got four tallies on the power play.

For the season, Lerg has a 2.86 goals against and a .920 save percentage, which is no doubt aided by MSU's tendancy to greatly inflate opponent's shot totals. Since it's State's "home" game tomorrow night at the Joe, let me go on record as saying that I will be shocked if we don't get credited with 40-50 shots on goal. He's faced fewer than thirty shots just one time since before Thanksgiving, and that was in the GLI where he faced 26 before getting yanked.

They're still 57 out of 58 in scoring offense (1.67 goals per game) and 32nd in team defense at 2.96 goals a night. The power play is at 13.2%, which isn't even 1% worse than our anemic unit and their PK is 86.2%.

A couple reminders:
-Tomorrow's game is at Joe Louis. It's strange that the Friday game is at the Joe, but that's how they're doing it this time. Saturday is at Yost.
-Tomorrow's game will air on FSN Plus and Saturday's is on Fox Sports Detroit.

Now for a little fun, since I think this stat is pretty cool. I hope I can explain it well:

The average team in the NHL has played 46.67 games so far this season. Dressing 18 skaters a night, that means each team has averaged 840 man games.

The 21 former Wolverines (not counting Turco) who have skated in the NHL this season have combined for 654 man games, which works out to 36.33 games if you dress 18 skaters a night. In those games, they've combined for 122 goals, which is more than 7 NHL teams have scored (NYI, OTT, CAR, TB, NAS, MIN, and LA), despite the fact that the Wolverines to a man have played the equivalent of 10 fewer games.

Based on the "team's" average of 3.36 goals per game, they'd have 157 goals if they were on equal footing with the rest of the league in terms of games played. 157 goals would rank only behind Detroit, San Jose, and Boston.

I realize that the vast majority of guys we've put into the NHL have been forwards. So it does skew the stats a little bit that we have more forwards playing than you'd typically dress. But our forwards have played the equivalent of 44.5 games (dressing 12 guys a night), which is still less than the NHL average of 46.67. And we're well behind the league average in man games out of our defense.

If you break it down that way the forwards have 113 goals in 534 man games, which is .21 goals per forward per game or 2.54 goals a night. The defensemen have 9 goals in 120 man games, which is .075 goals per defenseman per game, or .45 goals for the unit per game.

So our hypothetical team of Wolverines (12 forwards and 6 defensemen based on each position's averages) is scoring 2.99 goals per game, which would place them 10th in the NHL, just .01 goals per game behind New Jersey and Montreal for 8th.

Not bad considering guys like Comrie and Morrison have had down years and we don't really have a bona fide superstar, though Cammalleri is tied for 7th in goals.

Lastly, I'd like to bid a fond farewell to a friend of this site, WDFN. I haven't listened much since I moved to Wisconsin, but I was a loyal listener through my middle school and high school days. I'm not a morning person by any stretch of the imagination, but I used to get up extra early to listen to Damon "The Dog" Perry for as long as possible before school. Hardly a day went by without me or one of my friends making a Yinka Dare "No dime" reference.

Stoney and Wojo and Gregg and Jamie were two of my other favorite shows. I made sure never to miss "What's Your Beef" and I loved catching the Stoney and Wojo NCAA-style brackets. And even though I'm not a Lions fan, I would never miss Art Regner's post-game rants. "IF WE WERE THE FLAGSHIP, WE'D BE BLOWING BOBBY TODAY" (cue the audio clip of Bobby Ross going "Ohhhh yeah! I mean, yeah!")

My favorite memory of the station, though, has to be the promo songs. Somewhere I've got a tape of "Moronic" and "Yabba Dabba Do" (the songs mocking the Lions to the tune of "Ironic" and "I Only Wanna Be With You"). They were absolute classics. I think I could still sing all of "Moronic".

I remember when they would air "The Great American Sports Trivia Show". Even though I never got lucky enough to get one of the really cool prizes, I still picked up a couple things from calling into that show. I also won Detroit Grand Prix tickets one year for correctly answering a question about the ill-fated U.S. 500.

It saddens me that the station as I knew it is no more. I grew up listening to almost every show they had to offer, and even though The Dog moved on, Henson is in Texas, and I can't really listen to Stoney and Wojo, it bums me out to think they aren't on the air anymore, period.


Anonymous said...

If you ever are back in detroit for a game, I'd like to trade DFN stories with you, especially the trip I took with Gregg and Jamie to a U-M/Purdue football game in 1996.

I'll miss the drops, the parodies (Claude Lemieux impersonator singing "Red Wings wear panties" to the tune "I want Candy", or the Archie Bunker bits) and the banter, but I'll be honest,outside of some of the long time on air guys there, the programming has been awful since last summer.

Truly a sad day and the boobs at Clearchannel are to blame for not taking DFN to FM and for some of the other crap that 3G and other former personalities have blogged about.

Unknown said...

I'm also sad know WDFN is moreorless gone. I've rarely listened since moving to college in 2004 but I listened to that station all the time from 1998-2004.

I'll never forget the "whoa whoa whoa whoa the Tigers blow" song they played after losses. I still catch myself singing it every now and then today.