Brady Hoke has been in some hot water of late. First, a somewhat dismal season by Michigan standards. Then the Shane Morris concussion issue against Minnesota. Now the heat may be jacked up even more.

Pardon the pun… but Hoke’s Wolverines decided to “stake” their claim on Michigan State.

And Sparty was not happy about it.

According to Yahoo! Sports, Hoke issued a public apology for a stake that driven into the Michigan State playing surface before their contest last Saturday in East Lansing. Wolverine LB Joe Bolden drove the stake into the ground prior to the contest. Of course, this did not set well with Michigan State head coach Mark Dantonio or the Spartan faithful. Not only did the deed make the Spartans angry, it prepared them for glory in a big way as they ran up the score on their instate and Big 10 rivals, taking Big Blue to the woodshed 35-11. The Spartans had planned to take a knee and end the game but Dantonio wanted to send Hoke and the Wolverines a message by running up the score in the contest. If Michigan State was ticked off about the “big brother” comment last year, this time they were really ticked off.

Expect Michigan to catch hell from the rest of the college football world and the Big 10.

In his statement after the contest, Hoke said “I want to publicly apologize to Coach Dantonio as well as the players and
supporters of Michigan State for our act of poor sportsmanship displayed pre-game yesterday. I spoke with Mark earlier today and expressed to him that we meant no disrespect to his team. During our regular Friday night team meeting, one of the topics presented to motivate our team was a history lesson addressing commitment and teamwork in a tough environment. A tent stake was presented to the team as a symbol of this concept. The stake was brought into our locker room as a visual reminder and one of our team leaders chose to take it out on the field.”

“As the leader of our football program, I take full responsibility for the actions of our team. We believe in displaying a high level of respect at the University of Michigan and unfortunately that was not reflected by this action prior to kickoff.”

“I can only be diplomatic for so long,” Dantonio said following the game. “The little brother stuff, all the disrespect, it didn’t have to go in that direction.”

Dantonio then took aim directly at the way Michigan’s football program is led. Dantonio was not launching a shot directly at his coaching counterpart, Brady Hoke but higher up.

“We try to handle ourselves with composure” Dantonio explained. “That doesn’t come from a coach. It comes from the program. Throwing the stake down in our backyard out here and coming out there like they’re all that. That got shoved up … It got shoved in the last minute and a half.”

It’s another sad and somewhat pathetic chapter in Michigan football. Big Blue is acting as though they are still kings of the mountain and everyone else is saying “No. Not only are you NOT kings of the mountain anymore, you’re not even the crown prince.” Not everyone likes Michigan and alumni and fans haven’t exactly been happy with the Maize and Blue of late. This time, they brought this on themselves. The act is getting old and tired and someone finally said “enough.”

The victors are not that valiant anymore and putting a stake into someone’s else’s field is the least of Brady Hoke’s worries. He needs to win and win badly if he wants to be around in 2015. It’s time that Michigan takes the stake out of their own eye before they put it in someone’s elses. Michigan needs to get its own house in order before they mess with someone else’s.

Wolverines by their very nature are greedy and gluttons and have been known to turn on their own. This latest chapter may mean that the tables are turning on what was once a proud program. Michigan, once feared, reviled and hated has now become a joke.

But no one’s laughing in Ann Arbor and if things don’t improve, fans may want to put a stake in Hoke.