ESPN's Ed Cunningham goes off on the Michigan coaching staff

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Brady Hoke

Michigan Daily

The video tells most of the story here, but first a little background. Sophomore Shane Morris started at quarterback for Michigan on Saturday, and as you'll see by the score below it did not go well. The video picks up after Morris, playing on a bad ankle, had just been hit by Minnesota defensive lineman Theiren Cochran, and looked visibly woozy after rising from the turf.

ESPN analyst Ed Cunningham called for Cochran to be ejected for targeting, and then said it was "appalling" for Michigan to leave Morris in the game to throw another pass following the hit. "To have No. 7 in the game on a gimpy leg after a hit like that, that is looking after a young player," Cunningham said.

Morris was taken off the field in a cart, and head coach Brady Hoke said after the game he did not see Morris wobble after the it, and did not know why he left the Michigan Stadium field in a cart.

Of course, Hoke has made a habit recently of not seeing what the rest of the public sees.

Michigan lost 30-14 to Minnesota, dropping the Wolverines to 2-3 and making this the first team in the history of Michigan football to lose three games before the month of October. Michigan is 1-8 in its last eight games against Power Five competition. Hoke clearly has enough problems on his hands, charges by a national television analyst of player mismanagement is the last thing he needed.

(HT Andy Staples and EDSBS for the video)

Sunday update: Hoke has released a statement defending the actions of he and his staff in handling Morris.

“The safety of our student-athletes is always our top priority," Hoke stated. "We generally never discuss the specifics of a student-athlete's medical care, but Shane Morris was removed from yesterday's game against Minnesota after further aggravating an injury to his leg that he sustained earlier in the contest. He was evaluated by our experienced athletic trainers and team physicians, and we're confident proper medical decisions were made. The University of Michigan has a distinguished group of Certified Athletic Trainers and team physicians who are responsible for determining whether or not a player is physically able to play. Our coaches have no influence or authority to make determinations if or when an injured player returns to competition. The health and welfare of our student-athletes is and will continue to be a top priority.”

However, that will fail to turn the public relations tide, especially considering the events inside the Big House were picked up by ABC's World News Tonight (warning: shoddy TV copy below).