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Maize n Brew, Now With Greetings and Standards!

Well, we're four plus years into this, so it's probably a good time to write an Official Greeting to all the new visitors Maize n Brew is getting these days. So for those of you visiting the site for the first time or checking in for the hundredth: Welcome! Officially.

So What is Maize n Brew Exactly?

Maize n Brew is, at its heart, a Michigan Football blog. We can't help it. If you're like us, you've been a Michigan fan since you first saw that Winged Helmet or the first time you set foot on campus. There's just something about Michigan, Michigan Football, and Ann Arbor that engenders a special (read: irrational) dedication and mania unique to Wolverine fans. It drives us to so many extremes. From happiness to despair, to starting a blog in your free time so you can share your happiness or despair with others. Over the years I've tried to explain to people why I went to Michigan and why, nearly 15 years later, it still consumes so much of my free time. I've never been able to sum it up succinctly, so I started a blog and for some reason people keep reading it.

The primary thing you need to know about us and about Maize n Brew is that we're fans. Huge, partisan, sarcastic Michigan fans. We will try to be objective from time to time, but for the most part, you're going to get everything from the cynical Maize n Blue colored glasses from which we view the world. Second, we're not journalist. We are the exact opposite. We're fans with an outlet and a voice. Sometimes we'll write things that border on journalism, sometimes we'll interview a player or go to a Big Ten/Michigan media event (for some reason they actually let us in), sometimes we'll carefully dissect a situation and offer all kinds of well reasoned, thoughtful insight.

But most of the time we're going to be blindly optimistic, naive, having fun at everyone else expense, making fart jokes, and finding new ways to talk about Michigan Football, Michigan Basketball, Michigan Hockey, and the rest of the College Football and College Sports world in all it's absurdity.

We also like Beer. A lot. So there will be intermittent discussions of hoppy, malty beverages on this site. But fear not, they will relate back to football, tailgating, and the American Way.

So here are some guidelines on how we roll, and how we hope people will roll with us:

  • Have a Sense of Humor. This is Required. If you're going to be on this site, you'd better be able to laugh at yourself. We try our absolute hardest not to take ourselves too seriously, and lord knows when we do our readers call us on it. And they'll call you on it too. So have fun, have a laugh, and keep your sense of humor handy.
  • Decorum. Discussion is good. Disagreement is good. Trolling, flaming, and personal attacks are . . . not so good. Pretend you're in the room with whoever you're talking to or about. If you'd hesitate to say it in person, don't say it here. And let's leave the mean-spirited jokes about our players and coaches to our rivals, shall we?
  • If You See Something You Like Comment on it or Recommend it. We've got a lot of tools to play with here on the site, but the two most powerful tools for us are the comment button and recommend button at the bottom of every full post. By clicking the *Rec button at the bottom of the post, you're letting us know we did something you liked. If you post a comment on a post, we did your direct feed back and hopefully spark some debate. If you like it enough to comment and recommend, well, aren't you just flattering us to the point of blushing.

  • Rivals. Buckeye fan? MSU fan? Fan of any other team? Welcome! Seriously. Believe it or not, we welcome opposing fans here. It's easy to take yourself a little too seriously when you're insulated in a Michigan only website. So from time to time it's good to have a little outside perspective. The other thing is we believe college football is a global game. Fans are fans everywhere and we're united by a love of the game, so if you're a fan of college football you're welcome here. You can even talk a little smack as long as it's good-natured.
  • Criticism of players and coaches. While we're crazy Michigan partisans, we're not blind. When things are going horribly wrong or something is rotten in Denmark we're going to say something. We don't have access to protect or a stake in this other than our fandom. So if you've got something to say about a coach or the play of a player, hey, have at it. It's what fans do, right? Just keep a couple of things in mind as you're venting. First, you just might regret critical words when you find out after the season that the guy you were hounding all year was waging a private battle with cancer or something the whole time you were critiquing him from the comfort of your couch. Second, personal attacks at players or coaches are not cool. If you've got a personal grudge against a player or coach that has nothing to do with their on-field performance or how they represent the University of Michigan, don't vent it here. If there's something you need to say about decorum that's giving the school or the program a bad image, that's kosher. Third, each coach and player should be viewed as one of Roosevelt's "doers of deeds," who "if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly." Along those lines, We will not delve into players personal lives. That is for gossip sites like Deadspin. I don't care if so-and-so was out 'till 3am with whom. I've heard plenty of things that are none too flattering about all manner of Big Ten players, but those things haven't found their way into print. They're kids and they're Michigan players, and we'll leave their personal lives off this site. We ask that you do the same.
  • Material You Want to Share. Don't rip anybody off. If you find something somewhere else and want to post it here, quote an excerpt and link to the source. It's only right.
  • Photos and Links. We try to credit every photo we use here when possible with names and links. If we use a photo of yours and we're not appropriately crediting you, let us know. If you wish for us to take a photo down because it's yours, please email us.
  • Recruiting. Recruiting is a necessary evil. We're not going to cover it the same way sites like Rivals, Scout, or MGoBlog do. We just don't care enough and frankly we don't have the time. But we will keep you as up to date as we can without being creepy. To us what recruiting comes down to is talking about the decisions of 17-19 year old kids. Kids who are getting advice from all kinds of people (good and bad), being interviewed, being measured, and basically being put up on display because they are more physically gifted that their fellow high school classmates. It's really a creepy business. Our philosophy on this is simple. They're kids. We're not going to bash, spread rumors, lay innuendo, or discuss their preferences. If they decide to come to Michigan we're thrilled to have them. If they decide otherwise, it's their loss. We're pretty thrilled to be Wolverines and only want the players who share that.
  • Errors. We make mistakes from time to time. Raelly, we due. We can't help it. So from time to time we'll correct things, make grammatical and phrasing changes, and clear up obvious errors on posts. And we'll do this as we go. If it's bad enough we'll let you know, but for the most part we'll make those changes without notice.
  • Editorial. If we write it, it stays up. No matter how stupid or inane it was. If we're wrong, we'll write a retraction. But we're not going to hide anything from you.
  • Things We Won't Discuss or Tolerate. Politics are verboten, as are racist comments. Both will get your comments deleted and get you banned. This is a place to talk sports. Period.
  • Link Whoring/Spamming. If you've got something cool to share that deals with Michigan or college sports, we welcome links on the site. Just be tasteful and don't start pasting links to your site on a daily basis. Doing that is desperate and annoying. And we'll start deleting things if it gets to be a problem. If you're posting comments or fanposts/fanshots for advertising or other commercial purposes, you're getting deleted. Period. 
  • Advertising. You may occasionally see a political advertisement on Maize n Brew. Running such ads does not imply an endorsement of the candidate or views expressed in the ad, just as any such ad on a television station or network or in a newspaper does not imply endorsement by such an entity. Editorial and advertising at Maize n Brew are separate.
  • Profanity. It doesn't have to be all fairy tales and princesses around here, but let's keep it PG-13, please. We're not saints here. Far from it. I'll drop the occasional f-bomb for effect, but none of us are anywhere near funny enough to curse and swear with the gusto that our friends at BHGP or EDSBS do. Some artists work in oils or clay, they paint pictures out of glorious obscenities. We'll leave that to them. For the most part. A game thread on this site usually has a blue streak running through it that would make George Carlin blush in his grave. We're no prudes here. So if you feel the need to do so, we're all adults. But as adults, if you abuse this privilege we reserve the right to delete any overtly obscene comment, Fan Post or Fan Shot from the site that's just there to be crass. So have fun and say what's on your mind. That's what we do.

So that's it. Some simple guidelines for how we do what we do. We'll probably update this list as time goes by, but for now it's a good start. If you got things to add, let us know. But for now, thanks for stopping by.