Matt Shepard is the play-by-play voice of University of Michigan basketball, Eastern Michigan University football and the Detroit Lions Television Network. He can also be found on TV locally on Fox Sports Detroit and nationally on the Big Ten Network for college football and baseball.
Here, he answers a few of your burning questions.
Hometown? Farmington Hills, MI
Marital Status? Married, Lisa, with four children (3-boys 1-girl)
What High School did you attend? North Farmington HS
What is your Favorite sport to watch on TV and your favorite sport to attend in person?
Football on TV...hockey to attend
Who is your favorite actor or actress?
Clint Eastwood/Mel Gibson.....Ashley Judd
Who is your favorite sports celebrity of all time? Wayne Gretzky
Bases loaded, two outs in the bottom of the ninth of the Game Seven of the World Series and your team is down one run...Which active baseball player do you want at the plate? Derek Jeter
Who is your favorite cartoon character? Bugs Bunny
What is your favorite national sports moment? Miracle on Ice
What is your favorite Detroit sports moment?
1984 World Series & 1997 Red Wings Stanley Cup
If you could change a rule in sports, what would it be?
I'd just like to see the strike zone called appropriately
What Detroiter do you admire most? Joe Dumars
College or Pro Sports? College
If you could invite three people to dinner, living or dead, who would they be? Jesus....my father (deceased)....my father-in-law (deceased) to see 'em one more time
What was your most interesting interview? Paul Newman at the Detroit Grand Prix
Favorite broadcaster of all time? Dick Enberg....but I really respect Joe Buck
Most embarrassing moment on the air? Stuttering during a line in a sportscast
What is your favorite Sports Team? Detroit Tigers
Shep's Daily Poll Question is brought to you by Art Moran Buick GMC
[PODCAST] Lions Snow Game
Shep talks about the Detroit Lions "snow game" loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, Matthew Stafford's up-and-down outing and Jim Schwartz's questionable decisions.
Michigan State is the best football team in the Big Ten. They proved it during the regular season by winning every conference game by 10-pts or more and then they put an exclamation point on their season with a decisive knockout of Ohio State in the BT title game.
I predicted an MSU win because of their defense's ability to lock down receivers on the outside and play an 8-man box most of the game. Their defense really didn't disappoint all that much, despite 142 yards from Carlos Hyde, but remember he's a pro. The biggest surprise for me was how effective the Spartan offense was. Their balance was incredible: Jeremy Langford rushed for 130-yards, seven different receivers caught a pass, and Connor Cook threw for over 300. Cook and Langford were the better 1-2 punch Saturday night, better than the guys who were named all conference first team and one, Braxton Miller, was named the league's offensive POY.
Where is the love for Dave Warner and Jim Bollman, the MSU two offensive coordinators? They have been ridiculed all season for their "lack of creativity," and yet they coached an offense that had 438 total yards and scored 34-points. They deserve a ton of credit for putting their players in position to make plays and be successful. Too many times they take the brunt of the criticism when they lose, while taking a back seat to the players when they win. Today, they should all stand side-by-side and accept their deserved praise for a job well done. One more to go for their best season ever.
This roughing the passer penalty on Nick Fairley is up there for worst call of the year. Check it out:
There were a lot of bad calls yesterday, but this roughing the passer call on Nick Fairley should get someone fired. http://t.co/0w8g0ch2Hm— World of Isaac (@WorldofIsaac) December 9, 2013
Fans are making a lot about this penalty, as well as Ndamukong Suh's defensive holding penalty. And rightfully so.
What do you think about these calls?
Mojo from Mojo in the Morning and Max from WJLB Mornings join shep to talk about:
- Joe Nathan signing a 2 year deal with the Tigers. Like the deal or no?
- Ohio State is 12-0, if they beat MSU, do they or don't they belong in a National Championship against Florida State?
- Does Jameis Winston belong on a Heisman ballot?
Universally, media and fans alike felt like the Tigers biggest issue last year was their bullpen. Tigers President/GM Dave Dombrowski has addressed it by trading for a middle reliever and signing the best free agent closer on the market-Joe Nathan. Nathan comes at a reasonable price (2 years; 20-mill with a club option) and his track record is undeniable. He ranks tenth all time in saves and is coming off a season where he had 43 saves, boasted his second best ever WHIP and registered his second best ERA of 1.39.
There are some who don't like it because Nathan is 39 and there are others who feel like he's lost something on his fastball. I would ask them how old is too old and how old is not old enough? If he's too old at 39, was he too old at 38? He's lost a little something off his fastball, but since when does that mean a player can no longer be an effective closer. Mariano Rivera didn't have one, he used a cutter to become the best ever. Koji Uehara tops out around 89-90 with his fastball and he was good enough to help the Red Sox win it all. Jim Johnson had 50 saves, but he sure doesn't have an electric fastball. Look at one of the best in the game in Aroldis Chapman of the Reds-awesome stuff, reaches triple digits, but Nathan was better in close situations (blew 3 to Chapman's 5); had a better ERA, WHIP and BAA.
ESPN"s Keith Law idiotically suggested Nathan is a, "traditional, one-inning, break-the-glass-only-in-save-situation closer." Who isn't? Look at the numbers: Craig Kimbrel 68 games and 67-innings; KC's Greg Holland the same thing; Rivera appeared in 64 games and pitched 64-innings. All these guys are one-inning closers-Soriano, Chapman, Rodney, Romo, Balfour, Grilli. There aren't many Willie Hernandez's any more.
Nathan's signing doesn't guarantee the Tigers a division, league or world title, but it sures up the back end as well as they could have hoped. Now, the Tigers just got to get the game him.