Dave Brandon Opening Statement: "Hi everybody. If this has ever happened before, I don't know when, and it's been in the way, way distant past. We did have a pretty good look at the forecast coming into today, and we spent a lot of time yesterday with contingency plans, and I thought my operations staff did a terrific job of keeping their eye on the weather. We had every weatherman in southeastern Michigan helping us out. It was an unpredictable day because these cells kept popping up and dying down really fast. We were hoping we could get it in. We got through the first delay, and we actually thought we had another hour-and-a-half window before the next big kind of front was moving through, but this time of year and with the humidity and heat that we had, we just had buildups come out of nowhere. In a conference situation, as I understand it, the Big Ten has some very specific rules and protocols to follow. In a non-conference game, it's a little more open-ended in terms of how this was to be managed. Generally speaking in the conference rules, the officials and the head coaches and the home athletic director meet with the director of operations, and in our case that would be Rob Rademacher, and we would make a call. The choices that we had are obviously to wait it out, and we looked at that. The choices we had were to suspend the game and leave the score where it was, and there were some other options, but none of those were acceptable. So we really decided after a bit of discussion, and I want to compliment Coach Cubit and Kathy Beauregard at Western (Michigan), I think they were really terrific about this. We really thought about the safety of the fans, and we thought about the safety of the players, because to make them sit what could have been an hour and 45 minutes based on some of the projections we had with the weather, and then try to go out and get warmed up again and play more football would have not been in the interest of either team. If this was a close game that was into the fourth quarter and the game was in doubt, I think we would have waited it out because…well, we would have either waited it out because that was what the coaches wanted to do, or we would have decided that this would have gone in the books as a non-game. But the agreement that was reached between Western and Michigan was that the game was in hand, and that the game would stand as the final score would be indicated, so that's kind of where we are."
Question: As any other game, there are no stipulations win/loss for them?
Dave Brandon: "It's a win for Michigan. It's a loss for Western and all the records and stats will go in the books as if it were a completed game. We just terminated the game for the safety of the players and the safety of the fans and the reality of the situation with the weather."
Question: Dave with all things being equal, if this was a Big Ten game would things have stayed as it is right now?
Dave Brandon: "If it was a Big Ten game we would have been on the phone with the commissioner's office and we'd have had Big Ten officials in the booth, and we probably would have been more involved with the Big Ten office in terms of managing that whole situation."
Question: Were you in contact at all with the Big Ten?
Dave Brandon: "We contacted the Big Ten only because we were looking for some directions in terms of…we anticipated the possibility of a delay today, and you saw what we did. We had the messages all up on the board, we had the script written for the announcer. We were ready to put the weather map from the Weather Channel up there. We anticipated the possibility of a delay, and we got one. What we didn't anticipate was what happened and that was the weather just kept rolling in and it was a danger situation."
Question: Was it a pretty quick decision to cancel or was there a lot of deliberation going on?
Dave Brandon: "Well I think once we went in for the second time, we thought that maybe it was going to be a short delay, and then it became very apparent that we would never get the teams out before this next round, which you probably heard and maybe some of you dealt with as you were getting over to this side of the stadium. We knew it was going to be a long time. At that point, I got a call from the head of officials, and I was over in the operations booth, over by where you all sit, and I ran across the field and got over here to have the conversation with the officials and the coaches, and we reached the decision that we reached."
Question: You said there were other options that wouldn't have worked, would that have been like concluding the game at another time and nobody wanted to do that?
Dave Brandon: "I don't even know that that's an option. Certainly somebody said, well is there a way we could and that was somebody. That wasn't either one of the coaches or wasn't either one of the athletic directors, but that was cast aside right away. Certainly, somebody, and I think they were wearing a different color than maize and blue said well maybe we should just terminate the game and it really never happened. We'd be here till 3 o'clock in the morning before we were going to settle that outcome, because I'm proud of our team, and I think we had the game under control, and our team deserved the victory, and it all worked out. Again, I give a lot of credit to Western because they came to that conclusion just as we did."
Question: What did you think of the first game of the Brady Hoke era?
Dave Brandon: "It's a win. It's a win, and I am proud of the team. I think if I remember correctly we scored defensive touchdowns. I think if I remember correctly we won the turnover battle by a significant margin, because I don't think we turned it over. How many penalties did we have? (Questioner: One) "One. I like that and I thought we were pretty diversified on offense. We weren't letting any one player get beat up. We had a lot of things happening out there, and we were getting the ball out there to a lot of people. So Coach Hoke will get up here and tell you all the things we have to work on and boy there are a lot of them, but I loved winning the opening game, and Brady Hoke is 1-0."
Question: Did the heat affect some people significantly, fans, other people; you guys have an instances of?
Dave Brandon: "Yeah we were worried about the heat a lot. The players have misters over there, and I know the coaches were working hard on rotating people in and out. But we were worrying about the heat for everybody and one of the members of the Western Michigan band went down before they even got out of the tunnel, that's how they ended up stripping down to t-shirts and shorts, and I thought that was a good decision. Our band did a magnificent job, because they were in those uniforms and they were out doing their thing and we have a tough band (laughter). But at the end of the day, it was a tough day out there, it was hot, it was humid, and that just added to the complexity of it all."
Full Transcript: AD Brandon Post-Game
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