Tuesday, October 05, 2010

There should be absolute outrage Matt Millen is the analyst for the MSU-Michigan game

Some decisions are just wrong, disrespectful and despicable.
ESPN/ABC assigning Matt Millen to be the analyst for the Michigan State-Michigan game Saturday in Ann Arbor is one of them.
This state has struggled mightily economically and with its self-image. One of the worst aspects of that image's beating was the Lions' failure the eight years Millen was team president. The 0-16 season is directly on Millen. And so are all those bad draft picks, and one bad season after another.
But this goes beyond just the record and his ineptitude as a football executive. It's about Millen, the person, and the way he has conducted himself.
This is also about how he made a homophobic comment to former Lions' wide receiver Johnnie Morton on a road trip to Kansas City, blatantly bypassed the NFL's minority interviewing policy when he hired Steve Mariucci as Lions' head coach and referred to one of his players as a coward on a radio show.
There was the interview with Sports Illustrated upon his return to broadcasting when he insulted this state further by saying:
"I understand. In Detroit, they need a bad guy. I was a bad guy. I was to blame for the fall of the auto industry and the housing market. Somehow, I had something to do with Kwame Kilpatrick, although I'm not sure what. But that's what happens when you lose in this game. You give everyone a cheap and easy story to jump on.''
It wasn't a cheap and easy story. It was a long and painful journey. Eight years in football's version of Hades. Millen would have been just as vilified if the economy was going great guns and Kwame the male version of Mother Teresa. He has no credibility in this state. None.
Now this state's moved on, ever-so-slowly pulling itself out of the hole. Millen has moved on, too. Good for him. Have him do the Iowa game then. Not the biggest MSU-Michigan game in a decade, forcing millions of people in this state to listen what they only know too well is utter pablum.
You know who should try to do something about this? Channel 7. They are starting their happy, giddy "We've got the big game" talk this week on their newscasts. Well, what about this issue? Going to cover it? It's news. A lot of chatter about it on Twitter, that's for sure. Oh, and what about how your listeners are so important to you, and how much you care about them? Do you care enough to stand up to the insensitive flack at your network for doing this to "your people?"

Random Thoughts

- It is no great surprise the Ilitch family is going to purchase the Pistons. I wrote in a column this summer I thought it would work out well for Piston fans. I wouldn't have said that a few years back, but the Ilitch family has done a much better job when it comes to keeping the goofy stuff out out of their operations since Chris Ilitch has been put in the key operating position. Also, Tom Wilson and several people who were at The Palace for decades are already in place. They know what they are doing, and understand not only this area, but the NBA exceptionally well.
My only concern is the same as everyone else: It's gives the Ilitch family a virtual monopoly on the entertainment dollars in this area.
We'll have to see how it plays out.

- I just don't see any other scenario developing other than another Yankees-Phillies World Series. Is that a good thing or a bad thing?



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't blame Millen. He's just smart enough to take advantage of the Ford family's incompetence. The Lions stunk before Millen, they stank with him, and they stink now.

At least Millen was smart enough to get rich off the Ford incompetence and stank.

The Ford family can just move that team as far as I care. It's over now. Just leave here, and take your stank with you.

3:26 PM 
Anonymous Tom Mohan said...

Are they clueless at that network? This makes me think so. That Lebron special on his Big Decision makes me think so.

9:56 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The fact that Millen is doing the game this week does not conjure up all the bad feelings about his tenure with the Lions (and you somehow connecting it to Detroit's major downturn economically), it's the fact that columnists like you keep harping on that each and every time Millen's name is mentioned that does it.

Let it go, Pat. Most of us, whose lives do not center around where Millen is any particular week(due to the fact that it's your career to care about such things), have already let it go. (Keep in mind that because you get 25 calls on this during your radio show doesn't mean the majority of Detroit and it's surrounding areas cares.)

9:50 AM 
Anonymous ST said...

Speak for yourself, although the Lions are very frustrating to follow, I love having pro football here in the state. And like it or not, if they did ever leave, it would create a huge hole within our culture.

Millen took over a team that was fairly competitive, but underachieving during the 90’s…The results??? As Brain Billick said on Sunday, was downright criminal.

So I agree with Pat, Millen can take a flying leap as far as I am concerned. The mere sight of the man gets me angry.

10:51 AM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

I do blame Millen - for just continuing to fail and not resigning. Also, it's not on the Ford's he is doing this game. It is on ESPN/ABC.

1:04 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Ton Mohan,
Wasn't a big fair of The Decision, either. For the most part, I think EPSN does a great job. But the Millen MSU-Michigan game thing is flatout wrong.

1:05 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

That wasn't my point. It was that he should not be doing this game. He has no football cache with the fans this game means the most to - none.

1:06 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Having an NFL team is very important to an area. That Millen made it such a source of consternation (along with others) shouldn't cloud picture.

1:08 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pat, the problem is, we don't have an NFL team. We have the Lions, owned by the braindead Ford family.

They stink, have always stunk and will always stank.

You're blaming Millen for the Ford's stank? Please. He cashed checks for losing, same as the Ford family has done for a 1/2 century now.

The Fords should just get out of here... and take their stank with them.

Pay attention to the crowds this season, Pat, because I predict the Lions are on their way to extinction here. No more tolerance for this stank, first because people can't afford it, second because people truly are starting to understand that the Ford family is committed to nothing but stank.

9:10 PM 

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