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Why is this news?: Congress chimes in on Michigan concussion, fire Dave Brandon movement grows

All the big Ohio State news in one helpful place.

Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

"I strongly urge you to investigate the circumstances surrounding Shane Morris's injury and the decision to return him to play "

-Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), via Jon Solomon

The outrage over how Michigan handled the concussion situation over Shane Morris during the Minnesota game isn't limited to writers, fans, and students. Now, it looks to have attracted the attention of at least one member of congress, something that nobody should want.

Rep. Pascrell is asking the Big Ten to specifically look into the matter regarding Morris, and their concussion procedures generally, to make sure an event like this doesn't happen again. Pascrell, who represents a district in northern New Jersey, has shown interest in concussion issues and football before, having helped get legislation passed to address guidelines concerning sport related concussions in 2010.

The Big Ten, per Solomon, has not yet commented.

"We put out a statement yesterday and I'm going to let that statement speak for itself"

-Michigan head coach Brady Hoke

The Big Ten coaches conference call was today, and Michigan head coach Brady Hoke spoke out for the first time since the university dropped, a 1 a.m. no less, the news that Shane Morris did, in fact, have a concussion. Hoke, as you'd probably expect, was not chomping at the bit to answer question after question.

Other than mentioning that he's excited for the Rutgers game, and sorry that Morris has to go through all of this, Hoke didn't add much. At this point though, it's hard to imagine what he could say that would appease angry fans and writers. The damage has been done, and the failures of the entire Michigan operation, from the AD on down, have been exposed. Hoke likely won't have too many of these conference calls to get through in the future though.

"Instead of adding to the image and prestige of the university, the state of the athletic department has hurt the connection shared between alumni, fans, and the university."

-Zeid El-Kilani, creator of the "Fire Dave Brandon" petition

Last week, I wrote that Michigan needed to fire athletic director Dave Brandon. That was *before* the Minnesota/Michigan game though, and all of the ugly fallout that has come with it. Now, the movement to fire Brandon is growing even stronger, as a petition to let him go now have over 5,000 signatures.

This movement is coming from within the Michigan community, as El-Kilani is a Ford School graduate student. He warns that the behavior from the department risks "producing a generation of alumni that are disinterested and disengaged", and we don't disagree. On one level, watching Michigan struggle on the football field isn't something that causes us distress, but you can't take pleasure from the total implosion of the athletic department.

Our friends at MGoBlog are also doing a Fire Dave Brandon rally today at 6 PM.

"In two post-Virginia Tech contests, Barrett has tallied a total of 642 passing yards, 85 rushing yards, 10 touchdowns and just one interception, all while directing the Ohio State offense to a combined 116 points in wins over Kent State and Cincinnati."

-Ben Axelrod, Bleacher Report

In non "Michigan is a tire fire" news, J.T. Barrett has had himself quite a last few weeks, so much so that a reporter asked if he might supplant Braxton Miller if he returns and is healthy for next season (Meyer said no). Barrett is the first Buckeye QB to throw for 300 yards in back to back games since Troy Smith did it in 2006. Part of that is probably the defenses that he's faced. Part of that is because of the speed and talent he has in the skill positions around him. But a lot has been because of his decision making, and now Barrett has a good chance of winning Big Ten freshman of the week more times than anybody else in history. The record is six. Barrett has three before October.

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