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AnnArbor.com's News section covers government, crime, education, health and the environment across Washtenaw County.

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    The Saline football team will play two quarterbacks Friday.

    Joseph Tobianski | AnnArbor.com

    There’ll be two teams on the field at Saline High School Friday night, and four quarterbacks all vying for a spot on it.

    Both Ypsilanti and Saline enter the Week 2 AnnArbor.com Game of the Week with quarterback battles that went through the preseason and into the regular season with no signs of slowing down.

    And both are hoping they can find the right mix of the two to pull out a win in the 7 p.m. and head into next week’s SEC crossovers on a high note.

    For Saline, Trent Theisen and Travis Brown will both see time at quarterback. And if Friday is anything like the Hornets’ opening win against London A.B. Lucas, coach Joe Palka will have a tough decision on his hands.

    Brown went 6-for-6 for 106 yards and a score Friday, while Theisen went 5-for-8 for 81 yards and a score.

    “They continue to be almost equal,” Palka said.

    Palka said his original plan was to rotate both through the first three games of the season before trying to settle on one. He plans on sticking with that.

    “I’m kind of at a point where we’re going to let whatever happens happen,” Palka said. “If one of them does separate themselves and we need to use another one in another area of the team, I think that could happen.”

    Saline came into the season thinking it had two No. 1 quarterbacks and two No. 1 running backs. But they’re down to one running back, after Kevin Gross went down with a lower leg injury on the Hornet’s third play from scrimmage and didn’t return.

    Palka said Tuesday that Gross was diagnosed with a broken leg that will require surgery. He will miss the rest of the season.

    That will leave the bulk of the running load to Griffin Wooley, who ran for 448 yards last season.

    “Griffin’s a true number one, we felt like we had two number one type kids,” Palka said. “Unfortunately when we go to two backs, which we like to do, that limits us a little bit more. But we feel real good about Griffin and what he can do.”

    In Ypsilanti, Mike Caldwell and Marquis Smith both saw action in the team’s season-opening 13-6 loss to Milan.

    Grizzlies coach Rufus Pipkins said he will continue to platoon the two players who he said are similar in talent level.

    “It’s one of those things like a basketball team,” Pipkins said. “Whoever has the hot hand.”

    And while the Grizzlies’ offense struggled, its defense gave up 13 points to a Milan team that averaged 31 points per game last year and helped Ypsilanti stay in a close game until the end.

    Going into week two, Pipkins said his team is trying to eliminate some of the mistakes that led to a costly 140 penalty yards.

    “You really have to be careful about the type of mistakes that we have to clear up, because they’re aggressive mistakes,” Pipkins said. “They’re penalties where you don’t want to tone down your kids too much because you take away what makes our defense good.”

    Kyle Austin covers sports for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kyleaustin@annarbor.com or 734-623-2535. Follow him on Twitter @KAustin_AA.


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    The scene outside Michigan Stadium before the Notre Dame night game in September 2011.

    Ryan J. Stanton | AnnArbor.com

    Ann Arbor Police Chief John Seto says the public can expect heightened police enforcement for the return of the Notre Dame night game on Saturday.

    "With the Notre Dame night game two years ago, after the game it was quite busy because of the atmosphere and the crowd, so we'll keep extra officers out here patrolling," he said.

    Notre_Dame_2011_RJS_004.jpg

    Fans make their way across the street to the Big House for the Notre Dame night game in 2011.

    Ryan J. Stanton | AnnArbor.com

    It's been two years since the University of Michigan held its first-ever night game at Michigan Stadium — also against Notre Dame — in September 2011.

    The Wolverines beat the Fighting Irish 35-31 that night, with Denard Robinson throwing a last-minute touchdown pass to Roy Roundtree.

    Naturally, that was reason for thousands to celebrate, and it was a festive scene throughout Ann Arbor until the early morning hours the following day.

    Local taxicab drivers recall people who were out partying and bar-hopping until 2 a.m. were still downtown trying to hail cabs around 6 a.m.

    With kickoff at 8 p.m., instead of noon or 3:30 p.m., a prime-time game at the Big House also allows students and football fans several extra hours to party and tailgate beforehand.

    Ann Arbor police issued 94 alcohol-related citations and nine noise violations during pre-game activities for the Notre Dame game in 2011.

    After the game ended, Ann Arbor police issued 33 more alcohol-related citations and eight noise violations during nighttime party patrol.

    Notre_Dame_2011_RJS_007.jpg

    Police make an arrest before the Notre Dame night game in 2011.

    Ryan J. Stanton | AnnArbor.com

    Those numbers — 144 citations total — are considerably higher than the averages for the other seven home games in 2011 when just under 50 citations were issued per game.

    Broken down, that's 7.4 noise violations and 32.3 alcohol-related citations pre-game, and 3.4 noise violations and 6.7 alcohol-related citations afterward for the other games.

    "Since Notre Dame was a night game, pre-game enforcement was for a longer period of time," Seto said. "It began six hours before kickoff when the general time for pre-game enforcement is three hours for a noon kickoff. That's twice as much enforcement time."

    Seto said it's possible there might have been different staffing levels for each game. And he said it's important to note the Notre Dame vs. U-M matchup occurs in the early part of the season when celebratory activity is at its highest because of the warmer weather.

    Nonetheless, Seto said, he doesn't doubt that a Notre Dame night game brings on more enforcement action.

    The University of Michigan Department of Public Safety's game-day detail made 14 arrests, issued seven citations and ejected 23 other people from the stadium when Notre Dame visited in 2011.

    There were five arrests for disorderly conduct, three for stealing a golf cart, two for minors in possession of alcohol, one for assault and battery, one for resisting and obstructing police, one for larceny and one for domestic assault. There also were four citations written for having alcohol in the stadium, two for unauthorized entry, and one for possessing somebody else's ID.

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    Police closed down Main Street before and during the Notre Dame game in 2011.

    Ryan J. Stanton | AnnArbor.com

    The other 23 people who had run-ins with university police were ejected from the game for reasons ranging from disorderly conduct to having alcohol in the stadium, urinating in public in the stadium, and throwing projectiles.

    As for the city's plan for Saturday, with the game once again starting at 8 p.m., Seto said there will be an appropriate police presence, but he can't disclose specifics about staffing.

    "However, I can say the plan is similar to our deployment in 2011," he said. "The only difference that I can add is that due to our efforts this year with monitoring and addressing traffic flow in the neighborhood just west of the Michigan Stadium, additional officers will be patrolling this area."

    Seto noted the traffic control plan was slightly different for the Notre Dame night game in 2011, with Main Street shut down in front of the Big House three hours before the game.

    This year, the northbound lanes will close three hours before the game, but the southbound lanes will remain open until one hour prior to kickoff.

    "There were a lot of preparations two years ago, and there are a lot of preparations this year," Seto said. "So some of the added issues we may experience may be mitigated by some of our planning."

    Notre_Dame_2011_RJS_006.jpg

    Piles of trash lingered outside Michigan Stadium after football fans made their way inside for the Notre Dame game in 2011.

    Ryan J. Stanton | AnnArbor.com

    Seto believes the amount of post-game activity on Saturday will have more to do with the fact that Notre Dame draws a big crowd to town, and less to do with the start time of the game.

    "On any Saturday night, whether it's Notre Dame or any other game, there's going to be activities that go until 2 or 3 in the morning, so I'm not sure the late game had that much of an effect on the post-game activity," he said. "I mean, even when we had Notre Dame on the noon and 3:30 p.m. game start times, it was pretty busy afterward."

    City Administrator Steve Powers agreed.

    "It'll be more just the crowd and the size of the event," he said. "We do have some experience with larger events when Michigan State, Ohio State and Notre Dame come in."

    Powers said the city has a plan in place to hit the streets with street sweepers after the game to get rid of trash and litter left behind.

    Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for AnnArbor.com. Reach him at ryanstanton@annarbor.com or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.


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    Shrimp Quesadilla.

    Mary Bilyeu, Contributor

    Frugal Floozie Friday is a feature that seeks out dishes - appetizers, drinks, snacks, desserts, sandwiches, whatever - for $5 or less per person. Sometimes I split generously-sized items with loved ones, saving both money and calories; sometimes I find a great deal on a single serving that fits perfectly within the mandatory budget. I try to showcase several options to choose from, and you never know where I'll find them. Check out the column every Friday!

    My friend and fellow AnnArbor.com contributor Peggy Lampman wrote to me awhile ago to let me know that "La Casita Taqueria has amazing value — I had a shrimp quesadilla for $2.50 that sent me to the moon."

    Well, that was all the recommendation I needed. A trusted palate and a referral to a place that meets our mandatory Frugal Floozie Friday budget of $5 per person...? Off I went!

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    Gordita Al Pastor.

    Mary Bilyeu | Contributor

    So, of course, I ordered the shrimp quesadilla that had set Peggy's heart so a-flutter. A freshly fried, hot, crisp shell filled generously, it was very hearty all by itself, especially when paired with the chips and salsa basket that the waitress had brought to the table. To fill out the $5, I also ordered a gordita: a "Round Crispy Corn Tortilla Filled With ... Fresh Shredded Lettuce & Cheese." The Al Pastor — marinated roasted pork — cost $2.25. It was so much food that I actually had leftovers for the next day.

    The tacos range in price from $1.69 (Al Pastor, Carne Asada, Carnitas, Chorizo, Lengua/Tongue, Chochinita/Pork) to $2 for Tripe. Pambazos — "Mexican Bun Filled With Your Choice of Meat & Drowned in Special Red Mild Sauce" — cost $4.50-$4.75, with fillings from chicken to pork to beef.

    La Casita also offers breakfast, served with beans and rice, with platters costing $4.75 for eggs with a variety of accompaniments (chorizo, ham, vegetables). And you know dessert is always important! For $3.50, you can choose from Tres Leches Cake, Flan, and rice pudding.

    For a wide variety of frugal and hearty options, La Casita Taqueria is a great find!

    lacasitachipsandsalsa.jpg

    Mary Bilyeu | Contributor

    La Casita Taqueria
    2866 Washtenaw Ave.
    Ypsilanti, MI 48197
    734-434-0815
    Monday - Thursday: 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.
    Friday and Saturday: 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.
    Sunday: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.

    View Larger Map

    Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for Bilyeu
    Mary Bilyeu - a self-proclaimed Food Floozie (named for her blog, which is taking a summer vacation) - writes for AnnArbor.com on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, telling about her adventures in the kitchen. She is also on a mission to find great deals for her Frugal Floozie Friday posts, seeking fabulous food at restaurants on the limited budget of only $5 per person. Feel free to email her with questions, comments, or suggestions: yentamary@gmail.com.

    The phrase "You Should Only Be Happy" (written in Hebrew on the stone pictured in this post) comes from Deuteronomy 16:15 and is a wish for all her readers - when you come to visit here, may you always be happy.


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    The University Musical Society is known for bringing some big names to town. Next week it’s Queen Elizabeth II - or at least the next best thing.

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    Helen Mirren as Elizabeth II in a scene from "The Queen."

    publicity photo

    Helen Mirren reprises her Academy Award-winning role as the reigning monarch in “The Audience,” which will be broadcast live from London’s Gielgud Theatre as part of National Theatre Live and showing in high definition at the Michigan Theater Sunday and next Tuesday.

    Here’s the story behind the story.

    For 60 years Elizabeth II has met privately with each of her 12 Prime Ministers in a weekly audience at Buckingham Palace. Both parties have an unspoken agreement never to repeat what is said. “The Audience” breaks this contract of silence, and imagines a series of pivotal meetings between the Downing Street incumbents and their Queen.

    From young mother to grandmother, these private audiences chart the arc of the second Elizabethan Age. Politicians come and go through the revolving door of electoral politics, while she remains constant, waiting to welcome her next Prime Minister.

    It’s bound to be as close as most of us will get to a real audience with Her Majesty.

    The University Musical Society presents “The Audience” at the Michigan Theater, 603 E. Liberty St., Sunday, Sept. 8 at 7 p.m. and Tuesday, Sept. 10 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $22. Details: www.ums.org or 734-764-2538.


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    Fire crews were called to Eastern Michigan University Friday morning around 8 a.m. for a blaze started in a men's restroom, officials said.

    The Ypsilanti Fire Department extinguished the small fire in The Commons dining center, EMU police Chief Bob Heighes said.

    The fire was in one of the lower levels of the building. The Commons and nearby Wise Hall were evacuated just for precautions, Heighes added, but students were soon let back in to both.

    Ypsilanti fire officials were still at the scene around 10 a.m. investigating the cause.


    View EMU Dining Services Locations in a larger map

    John Counts covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at johncounts@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


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    The stage for ESPN College Game Day is in the process of being set up Thursday on the University of Michigan campus.

    Patrick Record | AnnArbor.com

    Crews began setting up for ESPN's "College GameDay" broadcast on Ingalls Mall at the University of Michigan Thursday.

    The show is coming to campus Saturday for the second time in three years. ESPN broadcast the show from campus in 2011 before the first night game in U-M history. In that game, the Wolverines took on Notre Dame, just as they will Saturday.

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    Thomas Crescenzo sets up a flycam for ESPN College Game Day at the University of Michigan on Thursday.

    Patrick Record | AnnArbor.com

    The show generally includes a crowd of fans who come bearing signs and dress in their school's colors.

    Saturday's broadcast begins at 9 a.m.

    Those seeking an even earlier tuneup for the game can participate in a pep rally at 7 p.m. Friday on the Diag.


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    Jaylen Johnson committed to Louisville Friday.

    Jaylen Johnson had his choice of several of the country's top college basketball programs. He opted for the defending national champions.

    The 6-foot-8, 210-pound Ypsilanti Community senior called Cardinals coach Rick Pitino Friday morning to offer his commitment for the 2014-15 season, ESPN is reporting. Pitino is being inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame this weekend in Springfield, Mass.

    Johnson can't sign his official letter of intent until Nov. 13.

    He picked Louisville over offers from Michigan State, Oregon, Arizona State, Texas A&M, Miami and Iowa State, among others. He also reportedly took an unofficial visit to Michigan last month.

    His mother, Janetta, recently said he planned to take all five of his official visits throughout the fall. But Friday’s commitment comes before any of them were taken.

    Johnson averaged 13.8 points and more than eight rebounds last year, as he helped Ypsilanti reach the state quarterfinals.

    His recruiting stature grew dramatically during the summer AAU camp circuit, playing at showcase camps like the LeBron James Skills Academy and with his AAU team, Dorian’s Pride out of Saginaw. He is ranked in the top 100 players nationally in the class of 2014 by all three recruiting services.

    Kyle Austin covers sports for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kyleaustin@annarbor.com or 734-623-2535. Follow him on Twitter @KAustin_AA.


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    Thursday evenings in the summertime mean Depot Town Cruise Nights in Ypsilanti. The event shuts down East Cross Street from 6 to 8 p.m. and car owners, collectors and families walk up and down the street checking out the classic cars.

    Visitors can also participate in a hula-hoop contest and listen to music. Next Thursday, Sept. 12, will be the last cruise night of the year.

    AnnArbor.com intern photographer Patrick Record captured these images Thursday, Sept. 5.


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    Canines of all shapes and sizes took to the water for the 2013 annual dog swim at the Buhr Park Outdoor Pool on Thursday, Sept. 5. The event allowed man's best friends to enjoy an afternoon at the pool, with plenty of fetch included.

    Brianne Bowen is an intern photographer.


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    Chelsea and Saline will rekindle their rivalry in Week 3.

    Ann Arbor News file

    Between your nominations and my two cents, we’ve got our third AnnArbor.com Game of the Week poll.

    Five games appear in our weekly poll, which opens today and stays open through 6 p.m. Tuesday. All of them have the chance to be the focus of our Week 3 high school coverage.

    We got nominations for three games for our Week 3 poll: Monroe Jefferson at Milan, Tawas Area at Father Gabriel Richard and Temperance Bedford at Lincoln.

    To fill the remaining poll slots, I’m adding two other noteworthy games on the schedule: the relaunch of the Saline-Chelsea rivalry, pitting last season’s SEC Red and White champs against each other, and Pioneer’s matchup against Tecumseh, the home opener for the Pioneers and new coach Jari Brown’s first game at Hollway Field.

    In the meantime, stop by at 7 p.m. tonight as we kick off Week 2 with our Game of the Week chat from Ypsilanti at Saline. We’ll be providing updates on area scores and chatting with high school football fans. Hope to see you there.


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    One person was injured when this SUV rolled over on Washtenaw Avenue Friday morning.

    Courtesy of Paul Desprez

    One person was taken to the hospital after an SUV rolled over at Washtenaw Avenue and Huron Parkway Friday morning in Ann Arbor.

    Huron Valley Ambulance spokeswoman Joyce Williams said emergency personnel were sent at 11:10 a.m. Friday to Washtenaw Avenue and Huron Parkway for a report of a rollover accident.

    Williams said one person was injured and that person was taken to St. Joseph Mercy Hospital at 11:34 a.m. The person was in stable condition, she said.

    Ann Arbor police and Ann Arbor firefighters were on scene at the crash. Ann Arbor police were not immediately able to give details on the crash Friday afternoon.


    View Larger Map

    Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kylefeldscher@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


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    A man suspected in numerous Dexter area home invasions was taken into custody early Friday morning, according to police.

    A Nixle message was sent out at 8:16 a.m. and Sgt. Geoff Fox of the Washtenaw County Sheriff's Office later confirmed that a man was arrested so the "be on the lookout" call was cancelled.

    On Thursday, the sheriffs office sent out an alert asking the public to "be on the lookout" for a white man in his early 20s driving a 1997 metallic silver and tan Buick. The man is suspected in several recent burglaries and larcenies in and around Dexter and the Webster Township area.

    Fox did not have any additional information about the case.

    John Counts covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at johncounts@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


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    carriagehouse.jpg
    The Ann Arbor-based community theater troupe Carriage House Theatre will venture into a new frontier this weekend, and you'll have multiple opportunities to check out its newest, commedia dell'arte-inspired pursuit: The Vagari Project.

    A release contains complete details:

    The Vagari Project is a traveling street theater troupe, which will be performing in public spaces mostly on the east coast this fall. To read more about the project, you can check out our website. but to SEE more about the project, just come to one of our performances this weekend around town!

    Saturday, September 7th: 4 p.m., The Diag (near N. University and State St.), downtown Ann Arbor

    Sunday, September 8th: 12 p.m., The Diag (near N. University and State St.), downtown Ann Arbor 2 p.m., Liberty Plaza (Liberty and Division Streets), downtown Ann Arbor 4 p.m., Monument Park (Central and Ann Arbor Streets), downtown Dexter

    Jenn McKee is an entertainment reporter for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at jennmckee@annarbor.com or 734-623-2546, and follow her on Twitter @jennmckee.


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    Nader Nassif

    Courtesy of WCSO

    After roughly three hours of arguments from attorneys on Thursday, Judge J. Cedric Simpson dismissed a defense motion that would have essentially prevented prosecutors from looking at certain text messages sent and received by Nader Nassif, the Ann Arbor attorney and former Downtown Development Authority board member accused of sexual assault.

    Lawyer Jill Schinske and lead defense attorney Joe Simon argued that there is correspondence on the iPhone seized by police between Nassif and hundreds of clients that could be used by the prosecutor's office in other cases. The defense said the court should intervene and separate the text messages pertaining to the criminal charge — drug transactions and the sexual assault — and Nassif's work communication.

    The defense argued that many of the text messages on the phone are protected by attorney-client privilege and that since the Washtenaw County Prosecutor's Office will be prosecuting many of those clients in the future, it should not have access to the messages.

    "This isn't a standard case," Schinske said at the hearing in 14A-1 District Court Thursday. "There is this interconnectedness that is problematic."

    Prior to being charged with one count of third-degree criminal sexual conduct, Nassif worked as a defender in Ann Arbor's 15th District Court, where he represented indigent clients.

    Simpson ultimately sided with Washtenaw County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Steven Hiller, who pointed out the cell phone was legally seized with a warrant and outlined a procedure for dealing with the voluminous text messages on the cell phone.

    The prosecution estimated there were about 8,000 pages of texts to sift through.

    Hiller said the text messages are "under lock and key" at the prosecutor's office and that only three people, including himself and Assistant Prosecutor J. Samuel Holtz, have access to them. That team will go through the text messages, separate those pertinent to the criminal case from correspondence with clients. Those that could be used as evidence will be shared with the defense. Any messages protected by attorney-client privilege will be sent to the judge.

    "We have no intention of introducing any privileged material in another case," Hiller said.

    Simpson agreed to the procedure, though Schinske hinted at an additional complication when she posed a conditional question about a situation in which Nassif engaged in a narcotic exchange with a client.

    That issue wasn't further addressed in Thursday's hearing, which is the second to precede Nassif's preliminary examination, still scheduled for Sept. 19. A third pre-preliminary exam hearing was also set for Sept. 12 to address a defense motion to dismiss the Washtenaw County Prosecutor's Office from the case.

    Simpson said it would also give the prosecution the chance to update him on progress made with the text messages, adding that one of his biggest concerns was making sure all evidence is shared with the defense in a timely manner before the preliminary examination.

    Nassif, a former member of the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority board, is facing a third-degree criminal sexual conduct count that indicates the alleged victim in the case was incapacitated and sexual penetration took place. Nassif knew or had “reason to know that the victim was mentally incapacitated and/or physically helpless,” according to the complaint.

    The alleged incident took place July 31 in his apartment in the 200 block of South Fourth Avenue. Nassif later resigned from the DDA and is no longer being assigned to cases in the 15th District Court, where his firm, Model Cities Legal Services, is contracted to provide representation.

    Ann Arbor police obtained warrants and seized evidence on July 31, Aug. 1 and Aug. 2 including bed sheets, contents from a trash can, an iPhone and computer.

    John Counts covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at johncounts@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


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    Want a ticket to the Michigan vs. Notre Dame game this weekend?

    You better be able to cough up some cash.

    University of Michigan has been sold out of all of its spectator tickets for about a week, and fans are now selling them on sanctioned online marketplaces like StubHub and unsanctioned marketplaces like Craigslist.

    NOTRE-DAME-NIGHT.JPG

    The last Notre Dame night game broke Michigan Stadium attendance records.

    Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com

    There were about 2,000 tickets for sale on StubHub midday Friday, at least 1,000 less than the day before.

    The most expensive tickets have a price tag of $7,500 each for sideline seats at Row A, and the cheapest tickets were running about $180 and $190. More than 1,100 tickets were selling for less than $300.

    But for some, even the lowest priced tickets are too expensive.

    Ashley Willis, a 2013 U-M graduate, is looking to buy one online for $125 or less and is traveling from Niles, Mich., to Ann Arbor to spend game day with her friends. She's fine with buying a student ticket and validating it for a fee at the ticket office.

    An avid Michigan fan while in college, Willis knows it's unlikely she'll get a ticket to this weekend's game at that price, but she's reluctant to pay more.

    "I am trying to save up so I can make a big move to a different state so I can pursue a different career," she explained. "That's kinda pushing the limit."

    The game is in demand for several reasons: Notre Dame is a major team, this is the last year of a long rivalry between the two teams and the game is the second one in Michigan Stadium history that will take place at night.

    The last night game against Notre Dame broke attendance records at the Big House with 114,804 fans in attendance.

    Most of the tickets for sale on StubHub were for end zone and corner sections.

    Yuna He is a busy graduate student preparing for job interviews. She sold her student ticket to the Notre Dame game for $180 on Craigslist.

    "I am surprised the price is so high," she said.

    "Before I sell a ticket, I will just browse Craigslist to see what the average price is," she said. "For [big] games it's super high... The price does vary a lot."

    She said that as she looked on Craigslist she noticed students were already selling their tickets for the Ohio State game for more than $200 each, whereas tickets for the Akron game next week are as low as $25 a piece.

    Season tickets for students cost $280, or $40 a game.

    Tickets to the Notre Dame game have been expensive from the start due to Michigan's switch to dynamic pricing this year. Instead of locked ticket prices, a computer program determined ticket cost based on their market value, which can be affected by team performance, visiting team performance, weather and inventory.

    For example, single end zone tickets sold by U-M were priced at about $200 a piece prior to the school selling out. End zone tickets for the Akron game are $65 a piece.

    Kellie Woodhouse covers higher education for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at kelliewoodhouse@annarbor.com or 734-623-4602 and follow her on twitter.


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    Milan quarterback Robert Kanitz after being injured on the first play from scrimmage against Ypsilanti, Friday August 30, 2013.

    Patrick Record | AnnArbor.com file photo

    Milan Area Schools superintendent Bryan Girbach issued a statement Friday morning condemning recent statements made by varsity football coach Jesse Hoskins regarding his team’s game at Ypsilanti Community High School last weekend.

    After a game marred with personal fouls and penalties, Hoskins said he hopes to never face the Grizzlies again. Ypsilanti had 16 penalties for 140 yards and Milan was flagged for six penalties for 55 yards. Hoskins was especially upset with what he said were several instances of helmet-to-helmet hits, some of which were called, some not.

    In addition to the play on the field, Hoskins said disorganization of the overall game day operations, complaints from community members and similarly negative experiences when facing Ypsilanti High School in the past made him want to discontinue the relationship.

    Girbach called Hoskins’ statements, “inappropriate.”

    “As the superintendent of Milan Area Schools, I acknowledge that Jesse Hoskins, our varsity football coach, made a mistake by making disparaging comments against Ypsilanti Community Schools (YCS),” Girbach said in a release. “I have talked with the Ypsilanti Community Schools’ superintendent, Mr. Menzel, several times regarding the articles. David Kaiser, our athletic director, and I have addressed coach Hoskins regarding his comments about YCS.”

    Kaiser and Ypsilanti Community superintendent Scott Menzel said the two schools would discuss whether the game would continue at a later date, which is standard procedure.

    “We will, like we do every year, sit down with the coaches and myself at the end of the year, evaluate our schedule, evaluate our program and make decisions from there,” Kaiser said.

    Menzel said he expects game days to run more smoothly now that school is in session and the school has a game under its belt.

    “I think some of those things (Hoskins referenced) are a product of being the first game, before school started, and the first as a consolidated district,” Menzel said.

    Menzel said he appreciated Girbach's statement.

    Ypsilanti Community plays at Saline High School Friday night and Milan plays at Riverview. Ypsilanti’s next home game is Sept. 20 against Chelsea.


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    It's the weekend everyone has had circled on their calendar since the 2013 University of Michigan football schedule was released: Under The Lights II.

    The week's Weather ... Or Not comes with mostly positive news, but there's a slight chance that the party could get a little wet on Saturday.

    As Michigan and Notre Dame duke it out on the field, there's a chance that some thunder and lightning might be coming down from the skies above. Make sure to bring a poncho with you into Michigan Stadium on Saturday.

    For more weekend weather, check out annarbor.com/weather and MLive.com/weather.

    Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kylefeldscher@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


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    In early April, the Louisville Cardinals cut down the nets and celebrated the 2013 National Championship.

    Thumbnail image for jaylen-johnson-ypsilanti-basketball-03192013.JPG

    Jaylen Johnson committed to Louisville Friday.

    And in mid-June, its coaching staff -- including head coach Rick Pitino -- started showing up to watch Ypsilanti’s Jaylen Johnson play on the summer basketball circuit.

    And as the months went on and Pitino continued to call and continued to show up, Jaylen’s mother, Janetta Johnson, couldn’t believe the amount of attention a program of that caliber was showing her son.

    “I was like ‘Wow, this is a national championship team, and they’re treating my son like he’s top 10 in the country,’” Johnson said. “They really really worked hard to develop that relationship.”

    The relationship that developed over a three-month span, plus a good fit style-wise and a shared vision for development, are why Johnson decided to commit to the Cardinals on Friday.

    Johnson called Pitino Friday morning before school to tell him he would be accepting a scholarship offer. And it just so happened that Johnson made his call at the beginning of the induction weekend for the National Basketball Hall of Fame, where Pitino is one of the inductees.

    The soon-to-be hall of famer spent the summer ingratiating himself with the Johnson and his inner circle -- he always answered phone calls, and spoke to everyone Janetta could think of who is important in Johnson’s life. He was also regular presence on the sidelines and Johnson made a name for himself with a standout summer on the AAU circuit.

    The Louisville coaching staff also broke down the 6-foot-9 Johnson’s game, and provided a clear plan for developing him. While some schools saw Johnson’s height and envisioned bulking him up and turning him into a post-up threat, Louisville saw his strengths as a passer in the open floor.

    For Janetta Johnson -- an Ann Arbor native who played for Wisconsin and professionally, who still holds the Baders’ single-season blocks record with 130 -- that was important.

    “I didn’t want anybody putting Jaylen in a box because Jaylen can do multiple things and I was looking for someone that could develop the things that he can do as well as add to them,” Janetta Johnson said. “That’s the program they have, and they assured me that that’s what they want to do with Jaylen.”

    Johnson had originally planned to take his five official visits throughout the fall, and wait at least another month to make a commitment.

    But after the recruiting process started getting more heated -- and ugly, according to Janetta -- and with the school year getting underway, mother and son sat down this week to have a frank discussion about where things stood.

    It was then that Jaylen realized that he was ready to commit.

    “Jaylen got to the point where he said he really wants to go to Louisville,” Janetta Johnson said.

    The early September commitment allows him to focus solely on school and the upcoming basketball season, after Janetta decided to cancel the official visits.

    Johnson chose Louisville over a host of other schools, among them Michigan State and Tom Izzo.

    “I personally love him and look up to him and he made a great impact on Jay,” Janetta Johnson said of Izzo. “I just think Jaylen felt like Louisville was a better fit for him, and he wanted to experience going out of state.”

    Michigan had also showed interest in recent weeks, and Johnson took an unofficial visit to the school last month. But Janetta Johnson said the Wolverines were unable to offer him a scholarship.

    Kyle Austin covers sports for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kyleaustin@annarbor.com or 734-623-2535. Follow him on Twitter @KAustin_AA.


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    Knights Steakhouse

    Even if you don't have tickets to Saturday's Notre Dame game under the lights, every Ann Arbor resident knows that you have to plan your day around the massive influx of traffic and football revelry.

    For most of us, it means hunkering down and watching the game from the comfort of our living room, but it doesn't have to be that way.

    "We are passing on the game and instead have reservations to eat downtown in the 'eye of the hurricane' at 8:00," wrote my friend Jim on Facebook.

    While it's true that making your way across town before or after a Michigan football game is next to impossible, the truth is that once those 107,500 people have taken their seats and the game has kicked off, the rest of Ann Arbor gets eerily quiet.

    Here's a short list of 5 places in Ann Arbor where you can eat good food between 8 and 10 p.m. Saturday, during the 'eye of the hurricane':

    Isalita (341A E. Liberty St.)

    Excellent small plate Mexican dining from the same team that brought us Mani Osteria. I love the Mexican Street Corn and the Queso Fundido. Bonus: Isalita is offering Coronita Buckets for $5 during the game from any seats that have a view of game on the bar-mounted televisions. Reservations accepted for parties larger than 6: 734-213-7400

    Knight's Steakhouse (2324 Dexter Avenue)

    In addition to having the best, or at least the stiffest, drinks in town, Knight's has a great menu of bar food and salads to go with their legendary steaks. TVs are mounted in the bar, and you will be able to see the game from many of the tables in the restaurant. Bonus: their "out of this world" brisket is on special this weekend. Reservations accepted: 734-665-8644

    Zingerman's Roadhouse (2501 Jackson Ave)

    Upscale comfort food reigns supreme in this westside Zingerman's outpost. Grab a seat in the bar area and enjoy some barbecue or macaroni and cheese along with a cool Michigan draft beer. Reservations accepted: 734-663-3663.

    The Raven's Club (207 South Main St.)

    This cozy, speakeasy-themed Main Street restaurant is known for craft cocktails and locally-focused small plates. The restaurant's new chef is earning rave reviews from friends, especially the burger and the heirloom carrot and polenta small plate. And yes, there are televisions at the bar. Reservations accepted: 734-214-0400.

    Jolly Pumpkin (311 South Main St.)

    Nationally renowned for Belgian-style beers brewed in Dexter, the Ann Arbor outpost for this brewpub is also an excellent destination for hand-tossed pizzas, inventive salads, small plates and sandwiches. The game will be on in the bar, and TVs are visible at some of the tables. Reservations accepted until 6 p.m.: 734-913-2730

    Jessica Webster leads the Food & Grocery section for AnnArbor.com, a part of the MLive Media Group. Reach her at JessicaWebster@annarbor.com. You also can follow her on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.


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    Ypsilanti Community High School will face Saline at Hornets Stadium in the AnnArbor.com Game of the Week Friday, September 6.

    Patrick Record | AnnArbor.com file photo

    Want to talk high school football?

    You're in the right place.

    Week 2 of the AnnArbor.com Game of the Week kicks off tonight as Saline (1-0) hosts Ypsilanti (0-1) at Hornet Stadium.

    Though both teams are in the separate divisions of the Southeastern Conference, the game doesn't count in the conference standings. The teams don't play each other in conference play, so they took it upon themselves to schedule each other in the non-conference schedule.

    Head on over to MLive’s High School Sports Network shortly before the 7 p.m. kickoff to see live updates and chat with reporters Kyle Austin and Peter Cunningham, who will be on site at Saline High School.

    We’ll also be pulling in scores from other area games and chatting about many football-related topics.

    A reminder that in order to participate in the Game of the Week chats this year, users will need to sing up for MLive.com user accounts. This is separate from your AnnArbor.com user account, so be sure to get on it.

    Pete Cunningham covers sports for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at petercunningham@annarbor.com.


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