Skull Session: Michigan's Accused of Ducking a Hockey Game, Big Ten Opens 5-0 in Bowls, and Hopalong Cassady's Son Will Do Rose Bowl Flyover

By Kevin Harrish on December 31, 2021 at 5:20 am
C.J. Stroud is waving in today's skull session.

Happy New Year's Eve to you all. I certainly hope you're all closing out 2021 as well as the Big Ten.

This unbeaten streak now falls on Michigan and a team with a losing record playing the ACC champion. Good luck!

Word of the Day: Omega.

 A LATE CHRISTMAS GIFT? Outside of DeaMonte Trayanum, Ohio State really hasn't made a huge splash in the transfer portal yet, but if they do go shopping, I have a humble suggestion...

In full transparency, I have no idea if the Buckeyes are interested in this case. Hell, they might not even know if they're interested given that everyone involved with the program is just a tad busy these next couple of days.

But *I* am interested. And that's all that matters.

In any case, this is a massive, massive loss for Northwestern. I'd say this is just another example of the new one-time transfer rule changing college football, but he almost certainly would have been able to do the same thing as a graduate transfer anyway.

 FAMILY TRADITION. The Cassady family has a rich Rose Bowl history with three generations participating in the game's festivities in some capacity.

Howard “Hopalong” Cassady's Rose Bowl performance was the original and the most legendary, but his grandson's Rose Bowl experience is certainly the most unique.

A B-2 stealth bomber from the Whiteman Airforce Base in Missouri will flyover the Rose Bowl on Saturday in Pasadena, California.

U.S. Air Force Capt. Kyle Cassady, who's one of the pilots, has ties to the Rose Bowl game.

Both Cassady's father and grandfather attended the Ohio State University and played in the Rose Bowl.

Cassady's grandfather, Howard “Hopalong” Cassady, also won the Heisman Trophy Award in 1955.

This won't be the first time he's performed a flyover at an Ohio State game – he did it ahead of Ohio State's 2018 matchup against Nebraska in the 'Shoe, but a Buckeye Rose Bowl appearance is certainly a bit of a step up.

Kyle "Flyover" Cassady certainly has a nice ring to it.

 MICHIGAN? DUCKING GAMES? NO WAY. This is going to come as a massive shock to you all, but the Michigan athletic program has been accused, once again, of using COVID-19 as an excuse to duck an opponent.

This time, though, it's hockey. And the evidence is pretty damning.

Yes there were certain testing protocols in place this season, how to handle players that test positive, and so on. But wide-scale procedures for exactly how to handle postponements, and under what circumstances, don't really exist. Or it's loosely defined, and being left up to the schools to decide, with no oversight.


In case you missed it, Michigan announced it could not play its Dec. 30 game against Western Michigan. Its reason? "(D)ue to health and welfare protocols." A phrase so vague as to be meaningless. Michigan has denied repeated attempts to elaborate.

Mean time, Michigan is still scheduled to play Michigan Tech on Dec. 29 — the day before — in the other GLI showcase game.

It begged — and still begs — the immediate question: If Michigan is in such bad shape, how is it able to play Dec. 29 and not Dec. 30?

The easy conclusion is that Michigan is ducking Western Michigan, a top-end Pairwise team that nearly swept the Wolverines earlier in the season. Michigan has five prominent players out at the World Juniors — major star players. WMU is intact. Taking a loss here could hurt its Pairwise, and Michigan doesn't want to take the chance.

When I suggested on Twitter yesterday that this is how it appears, I got a massive amount of positive feedback, including from WMU players. Clearly they think this is true. No one really disputed it.

And since Michigan and coach Mel Pearson won't discuss it further, this is the impression we're left with.

Truthfully, I've never *actually* believed that Michigan ducked Ohio State in football last year, but this has me reconsidering! Because if they're capable of doing this once...

 AND IN THE CLASSROOM. Bradley Robinson is having himself a hell of a week.

On Wednesday, the Buckeye long snapper was named a fourth-team All-American and somehow it's not even the biggest honor he received this week.

Now let's finish it off with a W tomorrow.

 SONG OF THE DAY. "Hotel California" by The Eagles.

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