Michael’s College Football Predictions

One of Michael’s favorite times of year was awaiting after he returned from camp…the start of the college football season. He loved the hype, the predictions, College GameDay and watching all the action.

He was getting ready to start something new on his blog and that would have included some video-blogging. In preparation for that, he spent some time earlier this summer working on a few of his predictions for the season. He completed predictions for eight teams in total, including his two favorites, Michigan and Oregon. We watched Michael work on these eight teams and saw him meticulously balance the wins and losses as he started this process, paying close attention to detail which would have carried through to those teams that he had yet to do.

We will be eagerly watching Michael’s predictions as this season gets underway!

We love you Michael and will be rooting for your teams❤️
IMG_8530Something tells us he would have snuck in a “Go Blue” here

IMG_8537And a “Go Ducks” here

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Michael Brindley, just1mike.com a memorial tribute

Known for his kind heart, passion for sports and zest for life, Michael Brindley passed away suddenly and unexpectedly this summer at the age of 16 from natural causes.Michael.Soph.Photo

A rising high school junior, Michael created this blog three years ago when he was just 13 as a place to begin his dream of sports writing and broadcasting. His passion for sports was contagious and he was described by many as having an encyclopedic mind for stats and sports knowledge. Since the inception of just1mike.com, Michael published 110 posts with his last post on June 18, 2016, just days before he died.

IMG_7855Michael’s sports passion started at a very early age and his allegiance to certain teams was no secret. He absolutely loved the Oregon Ducks, Michigan Wolverines, Buffalo Bills, Oklahoma City Thunder and the Chicago Cubs. His favorite sports were undeniably football, baseball and basketball. He was also a fierce supporter of his two brothers and their football teams, the Nazareth Academy Roadrunners and the Saint Xavier University Cougars as well as his beloved high school teams, the Hinsdale Central Red Devils.

While this blog was Michael’s main vehicle for writing, he was also a student writer for the Daisy Field Life Magazine in his hometown community, contributing regularly with an “Athlete of the Month” column. After completing a high school journalism course last year, he interviewed for and was brought on staff to start writing this school year for The Devil’s Advocate, an award winning publication from his high school.

IMG_3666 (1)Michael’s favorite times of year were undoubtedly “March Madness” with college football season playing a very close second. His passion for college sports was always electric but caught even more fire during March Madness. His ability to master information on all the teams and his own form of bracketology dazzled us all. What we will never forget is the enthusiasm, big smile and the twinkle in his eye when he was so happily wrapped up in all the excitement.  He shared his bracket and predictions for this year’s tournament on his blog. On April 5, 2016 he predicted Villanova to win the tournament by two….Villanova won this year by three points.

Before Michael left for camp this summer he worked on his college football predictions and had those ready to post at the end of the summer. We will post those predictions before the start of the college football season this weekend.

IMG_0043Attending games and sporting events was naturally one of Michael’s favorite past times and he went to some great events….the BCS National Championship game in 2011 to watch his Ducks take on Auburn, the Big 10 Football Championship in December of this year where we also went to the College GameDay broadcast (his favorite show), some great games at Wrigley Field cheering on his beloved Cubs and several Michigan basketball games, to mention just a few. He missed getting to a couple meaningful places on his wish list….watching Michigan football at the Big House in Ann Arbor and seeing the Buffalo Bills play a home game in Buffalo.

IMG_8520Some very special things in the world of sports took place in the days following Michael’s passing through the help of his cousin Meghan who works in social media. Seth Davis, @sethdavishoops, writer for Sports Illustrated, host of Campus Insiders and in-studio analyst for CBS’ NCAA men’s college basketball coverage tweeted about Michael…

 

IMG_9797Mike Golic,@espngolic, co-host of ESPN’s radio show Mike & Mike and Adnan Virk, @adnanESPN, an anchor for ESPN’s Baseball tonight honored Michael with a photo holding up Michael’s blog name, just1mike.

On July 1st, the day of Michael’s memorial service, the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, Massachusetts added a just1mike sign to the NBA championship display for the Cleveland Cavaliers. That night, the dome was illuminated in red to honor and remember Michael. We can just see the smile on our boy’s face as he saw these wonderful tributes and the red dome that night.

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IMG_8516Michael was all in when it came to sports, but he had another very strong interest and passion as well and that was his team, his company at Culver Military Academy Summer School. This six week summer camp is a unique and wonderful leadership opportunity that draws kids from around the world to the campus of Culver Academies on the shore of Lake Maxincukee in Indiana. Michael had just started his third and final summer of the program in June and would have graduated with a First Class rank from Culver at the end of July. He was in the Naval School and a devoted member of the unit Naval Two, affectionately known as Super Two.

IMG_8525Michael loved Culver and the brotherhood of Super Two. He formed friendships around the globe and became both a leader and a great friend to so many kids from his company and throughout the camp. We traveled back to Culver at the end of July to represent Michael at an important end of camp event and his favorite event, the Naval School Communications Relay. The boys of Naval Two lost a friend and a brother this summer. They are a very special group of young men who dedicated their summer to Michael and honored him in many beautiful ways.They designed a special Com Relay shirt and dog tags which they wore for Michael during the race. We were presented shirts and dog tags before the race by two of Michael’s dear friends of Naval Two which is something that will stay with us forever.

IMG_8474 3We are a family of five and will always be a family of five. Michael is the youngest of three boys and has grown up surrounded by the love of his two devoted parents, his brothers Robbie and Jack along with two dogs, Lucy and Hunter. He brought so much love, joy and laughter to our family. Our house was filled with sports banter, and endless loop of ESPN on TV followed by the countless games we watched together. We have been a divided house when it comes to Chicago baseball with Michael and his mom rooting for northside Cubbies and his dad and brothers cheering on the White Sox. This year though, our family has united for Michael to cheer on the Cubs. We are so hoping that this is the year for the Cubs to take it all…GO CUBS GO!

 

Michael, was a passionate sports fan with a love for writing and dreams of working for ESPN one day. More importantly, he was a loving son, brother, grandson, nephew, cousin and dear friend to so many. He was and will always be a gift and tremendous blessing to our family. Our lives are forever changed by the life and loss of our beloved Michael. A bright light to all who knew him, Michael touched the lives of so many people with his beautiful smile and friendly ways. While his life on this earth was much too short, he packed it full of love, passion, affection, laughter and loving kindness.

We love you so very much Michael and know your light will shine forever❤️

Your loving family,

Mom, Dad, Robbie & JackIMG_7328

 

 

College Basketball Stock

March Madness is only a month away and no teams have really separated themselves from the pack. I’m sorting out some of college hoops most confusing teams and offering a look as if they were commodities on the NY stock exchange. Here are my thoughts, what would you do?
Texas Longhorns, BUYimgres
Coach Shaka Smart has his Longhorns playing fantastic basketball. Texas is one of the elite defensive teams in the country with great size. Texas has been on a two game loosing streak, but both games were to top 15 teams on the road. Isaiah Taylor has been playing out of his mind on both sides of the ball. It took a couple of years, but it seems Taylor has truly blossomed to his full potential and has stepped up as the leader of this team. Come March Texas will have a great chance to make a run. Buy high for these Longhorns.
imgres-1Texas A&M Aggies, SELL
It was only a couple weeks ago that Texas A&M was a top 5 team and a popular pick to make it to the Final Four. Since then, the Aggies have been a completely different team, loosing 4 in a row to unranked opponents. A&M has struggled having the target on their back. This team has a ton of talent of their team, but they seem to not get it done time after time. Aggie fans will hate to hear me make this comparison, but A&M reminds me a lot of last years Texas team. Texas was chalk full of talented players, but they were not ready for the spot light. If the Aggies can’t even take being the team to beat in the terrible SEC, there is no way they can handle the bright lights of the NCAA Tournament.
imgresOregon Ducks, BUY 
It may be a year early, but the Oregon Ducks have established themselves as the class of the Pac-12. Although they have lost their past two games on the road, this Duck squad is for real. This team has a great balance of young talent and experienced players. It also helps to have a super star in Dillion Brooks on your team. Brooks has been the bet player in the conference, putting up 30 point games with ease. Freshman point guard Tyler Dorsey is the key for this team’s success. He is a great young player who has a bright future in college ball and beyond. Success in the NCAA Tournament comes with great guard play. Dorsey is the man to take the Ducks to Houston for their first Final Four in a long time.
imgresMichigan Wolverines, BUY
I am going to be on record saying, I think the Wolverines can make the Final Four. I know I sound crazy and a little biased, but here me out. I am not saying they will, but there is a chance. Michigan has been a tough team to figure out this year. They have looked like a top 10 team, but they have also looked like a team that doesn’t even belong in the NIT. Injury has been most to blame for Michigan’s inconsistency. Losing Caris LeVert for a long stretch of the season was tough for this team, but it has also been good as other players including Duncan Robinson and Muhammed-Ali Abdur-Rahkman have stepped up to add great depth. Now the Caris LeVert is finally back into the line up Michigan has gone from a okay team to a team that is down right scary. Michigan is on of the best shooting teams in the country and they live and die by the three point shot. If the Wolverines become hot during March, watch out.
imgres-1Purdue, SELL 
Yes I am selling on Purdue, a team that has consistently been in the top 25 week after week. The Boilermakers are tough, physical, and have some of the best big men in the country. They are a great team, but they have on major flaw that will be their Achilles heel in March. Purdue does not have consistent guard play. As I mention earlier that is crucial if you want to make a good run in the NCAA Tournament. I am selling on Purdue and look for the Boilermaker to be upset and make a early exit from March Madness.

Week 10 Predictions

21 Michigan vs 22 Michigan State: 

It is the battle of the Paul Bunyan Trophy.  These teams just don’t like each other, they hateJeremy+Gallon+Notre+Dame+v+Michigan+95oVvCfX1iux each other.  What makes this rivalry game even more special is that the winner basically wraps up the Big Ten Legends division.  It is the Wolverines offense vs the stifling defense of the Spartans.  Michigan has one of the most unpredictable quarterbacks in the country, Devin Gardner.  Somedays he looks like he is a Heisman candidate and other days he looks like he could be on the scout team.  In Michigan’s impressive wins, Gardner’s QBR has been almost perfect, but in the Penn State game, which they lost, his QBR was horrible.  The Spartans are also have some problems.  Michigan State has the worst offense in the Big Ten conference and maybe in the country.  They say defense win championships.  Defense will win this game, but it is not the defense you are thinking of.  Michigan’s defense will step up and beat old Sparty big. 

Prediction: Michigan 28 Michigan State 10

Unknown18 Oklahoma State vs 15 Texas Tech: 

This game will be a old Big 12 shootout.  Two teams that know how to spin the ball.  The Red Raiders suffered their first loss of the season last week, vs Oklahoma.  The Cowboys have finally found a run game.  This will be a high flying, high scoring game.  I think Tech will bounce back from their loss, but having a solid run game is what will decide this game.  Oklahoma State will upset Texas Tech.

Prediction: Oklahoma State 48 Texas Tech 45

Unknown-17 Miami vs 3 Florida State: One of the biggest rivalries in college football is finally back to what it used to be.  In Vegas they have the Hurricanes as a 21 point underdogs.  That is just disrespectful.  The Canes have not played their best football in the past two weeks, but when it is a rivalry both teams always play better.  The Canes have played down to their competition as well as up to their competition.  They have to play exceptional to even have a chance to stay with the Noles.  For Florida State, they have a very special freshman at QB.  Jameis Winston has been more then perfect.  He is only a freshman and he is already second in the Heisman trophy race and is leading his team to what could be a national title.  Famous Jameis is amazing but he is also human.  Duke Johnson will run the ball all over the Noles.  It’s all about the U.  I pick Miami to shock the world and ruin any hope Florida State has to got to the national championship.

Prediction: Miami 24 Florida State 21

 

 

 

Grand Match Up of the Day

 

images copy 8It is the last college basketball game of the year, the National Championship. Today’s Match Up of the Day is the Michigan Wolverines vs the Louisville Cardinals. This game is going to be amazing… I am so excited I’m shaking! This game is going to be a match up of twoimages-1 copy 4 completely different teams. Louisville, who is great on defense and Michigan, who is outstanding on offense. Both of these teams have been doubted throughout the year but have proved the haters wrong, and they have truly risen to the occasion. images copy

 

Michigan’s Keys:   If Michigan wants to finally cut down the nets and become National Champions, Player of the Year Trey Burke needs to show up and not play like he did against Syracuse. When they played Syracuse he only made one field goal. If he does that tonight it might be the Cards celebrating at the end of the game. Michigan does have experience with a full court press when they played VCU in the round of 32. In that game Burke easily broke through and hit a man for a open jumper. Burke has to have a big game for the Wolverines. We know he is a big time player and he loves the spot light so he has to shine in the big moment. Also Michigan needs to get off to a good start, get ahead, and most importantly don’t let Louisville come back once they take that lead. Louisville did it against Syracuse in the Big East Championship and they did it against the Shockers in the Final Four. If that happens Louisville would take the momentum, suck the life out of Michigan, and probably run away with the game. If Michigan wants to be the kings of college hoops, it is critical that they don’t let Louisville comeback.

 

Louisville:  kevin-ware-intros-cbs.jpgIf Louisville wants to win it all, Gorgui Dieng has to be a factor. He has to contain Mitch McGary who has been great this Tournament. Dieng can block shots with ease and McGary is very physical, so it will be a challenge. Also Kevin Ware is a big factor. Im sure most of us saw his gruesome injury vs Duke, all of the players want to win it for Kevin. He can be a big inspiration as long as the players keep their emotions in check.

images-2 copy 2Prediction:  This game is going to be so close it will probably come down to the last possession. This is what I have in my bracket. I think both these teams are very good but I trust Burke and I think he is going to win it with a buzzer beater. I have Michigan becoming the 2013 NCAA basketball Champs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Match Up of the Day

Today’s Match Up of the Day is the Michigan Wolverines vs the Florida Gators. This game is going to go down right to the wire. It is on CBS at 2:20 ET. Both teams have outstanding coaches and they are hot at the right time.

Trey Burke, Tim Hardaway Jr.Michigan’s Keys:  The keys for the Wolverines is the play of Mitch McGary. He has been amazing this whole NCAA Tournament. He has to have a big game because he has to guard Florida’s great big man Patrick Young. He has to play very physical because Young is going to try to beat him up in the paint. Also, Tim Hardaway Jr.  has to actually show up today. He is the Maize and Blue’s second best player, but he is a streaky shooter. When he is hot he just drains shots, but when he is cold he can’t throw a ball into the ocean. Hardaway has to play great if the Wolverines want to save the Big Ten and advance to Atlanta to the Final Four.

Florida’s Keys: The keys for the Gators is the play of point guard Kenny Boynton. He 507e2c207cce3.preview-300is the heart and soul of this Florida team. He is their best player and the true leader of their team. He has to guard the best player in the country, Trey Burke. We all know that that is a tough task. If Billy Donovan and his Gators want a chance against the Maize and Blue, Boynton has to have a monumental game.

Prediction:  This game is going to be tight but at the end of the day I trust Trey Burke. I have Michigan keeping the Big Ten alive and advancing to the Final Four.

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Match Up of the Day

Todays Match up of the Day is the Rams of VCU against the Maize & Blue Wolverines of Michigan. This is a new segment of my blog and throughout  the Tournament called Match Up of the Day. In this segment I will pick what is the best match up analyze it, give the keys to victory for both teams, and then tell you guys who I think is going to win the game and why. Today the match up is VCU vs Michigan at 12:15 ET on CBS. There are many great games on today but I just have a feeling this is going to be a close one.

Unknown copyKeys for Michigan:  Michigan has a tough game ahead of them against the VCU Rams. We all know that VCU is going to come out in a full-court press defense, so Michigan will turn the ball over a lot in this game.  The key to victory for the Wolverines is the play of super star point guard Trey Burke. With the Rams trying to reek havoc Burke has to take care of the ball and set the game to his tempo. Also if they can break VCU’s press and get the ball down the court they could spread the Rams out and pass it to Hardaway or Stauskas to drain a three point shot. If they limit turnovers and spread the floor the Rams might be headed into some big trouble. If Michigan wants to advance to the Sweet Sixteen Mr. Wooden Award Burke has to take over.

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Keys for VCU:  Virginia Commonwealth has a HUGE task ahead of them, they have to contain Trey Burke and the high powered Michigan offense. The Rams will come out in a full-court press to force turnovers, but staying in that defense for the whole game might not be the greatest idea. Michigan will slice right through that defense and get an easy lay up, jump shot, or wide open three pointer. What the Rams should do is in the middle of the game switch to a half-court press defense to rattle John Beilein’s Michigan Wolverines. They would catch them off guard and take advantage off the surprised offense. Also Michigan only had one day to prepare for the Rams pesky defense, that might be a huge problem for Burke and company. VCU has a great chance of reeking havoc and they might send the Wolverines packing back to Ann Arbor.

Prediction:  This is going to be a hard fought game between two evenly matched teams but there has to be a winner. Although Shaka Smart and his Rams demolish opposing teams offenses Burke will be able to exploit the Rams press and kick it out to their jump shooters and rack up the points. At the end of the game it is going to come down to Trey Burke and I trust him to win it for them. I think Michigan is going to survive a battle and move on to the Sweet Sixteen.
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NCAA’S New #1

There were many upsets the past week in college basketball. Duke got annihilated by Miami, Louisville went on a three game loosing streak, Arizona lost to the Bruins of UCLA, and Syracuse went down to Villanova. The only two teams in the top five that won all of their games last week were #2 Michigan and #3 Kansas. Who is going to be number one? Rock, Chalk, Jay-hawk or is it the Maize and Blue?

There is no way that the Michigan Wolverines will be ranked lower then number one. Michigan has the most talented team and in my opinion they are the best coached team. Although Kansas has played well this year Michigan was the number two team and Kansas was number three last week. Michigan also has the best backcourt in the nation,Trey Burke and Tim Hardaway Jr. Right now Michigan is almost unstoppable.

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