EDIT: So Notre Dame obliged us by doing their best impression of basketball season, and Michigan now leads, .7307 to .7306. Wolverine 247 is reporting it, but their numbers are way off. They're reporting .7324 to .7323. I have no idea how they came up with those numbers; they don't make sense at all. Even Notre Dame's preseason media guide reported their all-time percentage as .732 (with a preseason record of 892-313-42); there's no way a 1-3 record puts them at .7323.
EDITED AGAIN: Wolverine 247 has corrected their numbers.
A few MGoUsers have noted that Michigan can retake the lead from Notre Dame in all-time winning percentage tomorrow, if Michigan beats Penn State and Notre Dame loses to Duke. Anyone want to delve deeper into both the races for all-time winning percentage and number of wins?
The current records of the schools are:
Notre Dame: 893-315-42, 1250 GP, .7312
MICHIGAN: 928-331-36, 1295 GP, .7305
(Note that the NCAA figures a tie as half won and half lost.)
All-Time Best Winning Percentage:
Until 2004, for decades Notre Dame easily had the highest all-time winning percentage among all schools. I suspect that during most of that time, if Michigan was not #2, it was at least third or fourth on the list; the point-a-minute era gave Michigan a good head start over most schools, Crisler righted the ship a bit in the ‘40s, and then Bo came along.
Notre Dame first overtook Michigan in all-time winning percentage in 1920, as the Rockne Era was just ramping up and Fielding Yost was starting to slow down a bit at Michigan. The big day was October 23, 1920, when Michigan lost to Illinois and Notre Dame beat Valparaiso; Notre Dame slipped ahead that afternoon, .7917 to .7898, and didn’t look back for more than 80 years.
Flash ahead to the end of the 2003 season, when Notre Dame’s 84-year lead was shaved to just .0001 after Chris Perry and John Navarre beat Ohio State with Notre Dame not playing that day.
On opening day in 2004, Michigan took over the lead, .7461 to .7454, with a win over Miami (Ohio) and a Notre Dame loss at BYU. But the very next week in South Bend, Garrett Rivas kicked field goals instead of a rookie Chad Henne throwing touchdowns, and the unranked Irish upset the Wolverines 28-20. Notre Dame retook the lead, .7457 to .7454, and maintained that lead for three weeks. On October 2, Notre Dame lost to Purdue and Michigan won at Indiana to retake the lead .7461 to .7456; this time, instead of just a week, Michigan would hold a very thin lead for nine years.
December 28, 2013 was our next pivotal moment, with Michigan losing to Kansas State in the Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl and Notre Dame beating Rutgers in the Pinstripe Bowl. Notre Dame retook the lead .7330 to .7324, and that’s more or less where we are today.
If Michigan beats Penn State tomorrow and Notre Dame loses to Duke, Michigan will inch ahead of the Irish by the narrowest of margins, .7307 to .7306.
Looking ahead, if you’d easily like to predict the course of the percentages over the season, given the two schools’ number of games played and percentages of past wins and ties, a win these days raises the school’s percentage by about .0002. A loss lowers the school’s percentage by about .0006.
It’s fascinating to look at a graph of the two schools’ season-end winning percentages over the past 100 years:
The rise and fall over the century is nearly identical. Rockne took the lead over from Michigan and built it up. Both schools experienced similar drops in the 1930s until rising again in the Leahy and Crisler years. Both took dips again in the 1950s. Ara Parseghian and Dan Devine righted the ship for the Irish in the ‘60s and ‘70s, and Bo did the same for Michigan. The difference then was that aside from Lou Holtz’s uptick in the late ‘80s, Notre Dame experienced a slow but steady decline starting with the Gerry Faust years, while Bo, Gary Moeller, and Lloyd Carr continued slowly but surely to build the numbers for Michigan.
The highest winning percentage Michigan ever reached was .8228, on November 25, 1905. The Wolverines beat Oberlin at Regents Field that day, 75-0, in the last win of Fielding Yost’s amazing point-a-minute unbeaten streak. The next week Michigan would lose to Chicago 2-0 at Marshall Field in “The First Greatest Game of the Century” when Amos Alonzo Stagg had finally bought enough players to beat Yost (plug for John Kryk's fabulous and fascinating book: "Stagg vs. Yost: The Birth of Cutthroat Football").
Notre Dame’s highest ever winning percentage was .8221, reached on November 14, 1931 in a 20-0 win over Navy in Baltimore. The Irish would lose their next game at home to USC, 16-14.
So not only do the schools' historical rise and fall in percentage roughly match on the graph, but each school reached its historical apex at roughly .822, and could climb no higher.
Biting at the heels of Notre Dame and Michigan are (current percentages as of last weekend):
1. Notre Dame .7312
2. MICHIGAN .7305
3. Boise State .7254
4. Ohio State .7230
5. Oklahoma .7204
6. Alabama .7187
7. Texas .7105
Ohio State is particularly alarming on that list, given (1) the recent gaudy record juggernaut in Columbus that doesn't look like it's stopping anytime soon; and (2) a Michigan loss to Ohio State corresponds to a roughly .0008 swing in all-time percentage -- Michigan really needs to stop losing to the Buckeyes, obvs.
All-Time Number of Wins:
Michigan started playing football nine years before Notre Dame, and played more games than the Irish did in Notre Dame’s first few years. As of today Michigan has played 45 more games.
Michigan always had a commanding lead on Notre Dame in number of wins until the 1960s, when Bump Elliot’s lean tenure at Michigan coincided with Ara Parseghian’s reboot of Notre Dame’s program.
Notre Dame finally caught Michigan in all-time wins on November 24, 1967. On the day after Thanksgiving, Notre Dame won at Miami to tie Michigan’s 501 wins; Michigan lost the next day to Ohio State, and the teams would open 1968 tied.
1968 opened with Notre Dame beating Oklahoma and Michigan losing to California, for a ND one-win lead. The next week the tie was on again, with a Michigan win at Duke and a Notre Dame loss to Purdue. Bump’s last season was one of his best, and Michigan didn’t lose a game the rest of the way except to Woody Hayes’s national champs; 1968 finished with Michigan one win ahead, 509-508.
Bo kept that one-win lead through 1969, with the year finishing 517-516, advantage Good Guys.
Notre Dame would tie Michigan again at the end of the 1970 season, with a win over No. 1 Texas in the Cotton Bowl; 526-526.
Michigan finally pulled ahead for good in 1971; right away Michigan beat Northwestern for win #527 while Notre Dame didn’t play on opening weekend. Michigan’s 11-1 season vs. Notre Dame’s 8-2 put Michigan ahead 537-534. Notre Dame kept relatively close to Michigan until 1981, when ND’s 5-6 record really put them behind the 8-ball against Michigan’s 9-3.
As with winning percentage, in total wins Michigan was greatly helped by the Bo/Mo/Lloyd relatively steady hands at the wheel while ND foundered with Gerry Faust, Bob Davie, Tyrone Willingham, and Charlie Weis. And Bo’s record in the ‘70s was good enough to leave just about everyone in the dust, even Ara Parseghian and Dan Devine.
A few seasons back, before Texas fell off the cliff for a few years, the Longhorns briefly moved ahead of Notre Dame for #2 on the wins list.
Next up on the wins list behind Michigan and Notre Dame are (as of last weekend):
1. MICHIGAN, 928
2. Notre Dame, 893
3. Texas, 888
4. Nebraska, 883
5. Ohio State, 878
6. Alabama, 867
7. Oklahoma, 861
a few depth chart changes this week let me know if i missed anything https://www.scribd.com/document/325024126/PSU-2016-Miniprogram
In the latest installment of “The State Of Our Open Threads”, someone had asked for some historical perspective on some of the data, and I decided that it would be a good idea to go back through the data on two of the more common words among those tracked – “fuck” and “shit” – which are, incidentally, two of our more indicative words, and see exactly what the history of each could tell us about the last three years of the board on football Saturdays.
The main analysis is for the regular season only, although I do have bowl data. Being that the period was from 2013 to now, I kept the bowl data separate since, well, we didn’t go to one in 2014. That aside, it was interesting to go back through the old data and see what might be gleaned from it that hasn’t already, not to mention see if there were any more interesting metrics that we had not devised yet.
Before we get into some new metrics, the raw data for each word should be examined.
The raw, unadjusted fucks are charted below, beginning from the start of 2013 to now. For purposes of this stab at the analysis, the bowl game data is excluded.
You can see the bulge in 2015, which has a lot more to do with the enthusiasm at the beginning of the Harbaugh era of Michigan football than anything else. As there are fucks of frustration, so there are fucks of elation, and quite a bit of what is going on there can be explained that way. If we scan the last two years of Hoke’s time here, a few games immediately stand out specifically for how angry we got – 2013 Penn State, 2013 Iowa (80% of those fucks were 2nd half fucks), and 2014 Rutgers. Over there, the “fucks” point to what MGoBlog may have deemed watershed moments in the waning days of the previous coaching regime.
Now, the unfettered shit.
You get a similar story for Harbaugh’s time to date actually, although “shit” tends to be the one we reserve more for plays or calls that do not go our way, and there was enough of that even in the wins in 2015 to explain that. It had an interesting run in 2013 and 2014 too – it was in relatively heavy use in the 2013 Iowa game and then it hit unheard of levels for the 2014 Utah game, a game punctuated by a rain that said without words what a lot of us were feeling.
After a few discussions with people, I began to realize that we need another level of this analysis – the fucks must be tempo adjusted to get a better handle on just how we felt, so there are two ways we can look at this. One is the Fucks Adjusted For Real Time (i.e., approximate airtime in minutes, accounting for those at home), or the FART rate and the other is Fucks Adjusted For Total Plays, which we will call the FAP Rate. They will look similar to the previous “Fuck” graph but perhaps they tell us a few things.
Here’s FART Rate:
So, we do see a few things here – the highest FART rate belongs to 2015 Indiana game, followed closely by the 2015 Michigan State game, both of which contained some hairy moments – I’ll put it politely.
Perhaps FAP Rate says something different:
Similar to FART, but telling you how many fucks on average were tossed into the open thread per offensive and defensive snap, and like FART, showing you a little bit how game length and game speed can affect our fucks.
Let’s do the same thing for “shit” using the same data. That will give us “Shits Adjusted For Real Time”, which we will call the SHART rate, and “Shits Adjusted For Total Plays”, or SHAT because that sounds better to me.
So, here’s the SHART rate for this period:
One thing is clear at this point until 2014 Utah, “shit” was not quite the shit on the blog. Clearly, it has seen a majority of its use since that game.
SHAT Rate should probably look similar:
It does. The 2015 Minnesota and Penn State games have the highest SHAT, which I find interesting because at least during the Minnesota game, I am sure I used that word quite a bit.
There’s another transformation that we can do here at this point. Let’s look at the FART / SHART combined ratio and see if we can get a good handle on how we were using these words relative to one another in recent years. We can call this the SQUIRT Number for the threads.
Here’s what that looks like:
The highest SQUIRT numbers clearly belong to 2013 Penn State and 2014 Rutgers. The average SQUIRT over this period is about 2.81, so basically for every three fucks, there is a shit. In the two games just mentioned though, there was a tendency to run with fuck rather than get mired in shit and I don’t blame anyone either.
Anyway, this is just a warning that you may see some more analytics on occasion.
0-5-3 start to the season.
Just 5 (edit) goals in 8 games (0.63 per game)
All of this in year 5 of Chaka Daley, as he dropped to 33-37-14 at Michigan after tonight's 1-0 loss to WMU. The 3rd straight shutout loss and 5th game of the 8 played where we failed to score any goals.
Chaka has failed to make the NCAA Tournament each season outside of his first year which was done with the previous coach's players (and he still only managed a record one game above .500).
The previous coach was handed the DB special. If you read Endzone, you know what happened. If you didn't, long and maddening story short-
- DB gets hired in 2010
- Michigan, in its 11th season as a program, goes 17-6-3 and makes it to the NCAA College Cup (final four), and came up short in the national semifinal in a one goal game to eventual national champion Akron.
- 98% of the scoring either goes pro or graduates after the season.
DB makes douchey remark at banquet-
"Congratulations on making the Final Four. Do you know what happens when you make it to the Final Four? We expect you to do it again".
- Michigan naturally has a down season in 2011 with all of its offense gone from the previous year. Every loss in that 5-14-1 season in 2011 came by one goal. Michigan also upset the team that beat them in the College Cup.
- Steve Burns wrongly fired after the season ends.
So fast forward to now. No tournament since 2012, finishing lower and lower every single year in conference play similar to Hoke. It's gotten to the point where it's even being said by the BTN+ Student broadcast team that the players are going through the motions out there. It's sad for a guy like Evan Louro who is a great goalie. He's getting no help whatsoever from anyone.
Bizzare transfers happening including losing a hometown kid in Ahinga Selemani after one year and TWO players transferring to OHIO STATE!
Michigan's offensive output of 5 goals in 8 games is the second-worst total through that many games in program history. What's the first? Two years ago under Chaka where it was 4 goals in 7 games.
Warde Manuel's first real hire here is likely coming in November/December. Because 0-5-3 in year 5 where things have been getting progressively worse is not cutting it.
Not when you have the former US WNT coach leading the women's team and approaching his 100th career victory here.
Here's my short list for coaching candidates-
Paul Snape- Head coach at #10 Butler. He was an assistant here from 2003-2010. Butler is 5-0-1 currently with wins over B1G teams and their only blemish being a tie with top-15 Louisville.
Kevin Langan- Head coach of the top-5 ranked UNC-Charlotte 49ers. Was an assistant there for their College Cup in 2011. He has a 56-21-10 record there, and the 49ers just crushed Rutgers who isn't that bad in men's soccer.
- Steve Burns- He's been out of coaching since he was wrongly fired, he works in the Alumni Association. Would be a heck of a story.
W. P. Kinsella passed away last weekend at the age of eighty-one. During his lifetime, Kinsella published seven novels and over a dozen collections of short stories, but the work for which he will be most remembered is Shoeless Joe, the book on which the 1989 film Field of Dreams was based. Now familiar to sports fans and non-sports fans alike, the story hardly needs to be recounted: an Iowa man hears a spectral voice while standing in the middle of his cornfield, and by heeding its call, the man discovers a way back to the baseball heroes of his youth. Kinsella’s work was often assigned the label of magical realism, a term which suggests the blending of fact and fantasy into a tenuous equilibrium, but to the true devotee, Kinsella’s work may read more like a testament of faith. Kinsella’s lasting contribution may be the way in which he taught sports fans to believe in the voice from the sky.
For thirty-three years, until 2005, Howard King was the voice from the sky in Michigan Stadium, where he served as the public address announcer. Understated and level, King’s voice raised an entire generation of Michigan Football fans to appreciate the unique culture of the program: substance over style, consistency over conceit, tradition over all. This was not the culture of most other institutions, and certainly not of the businesses which constitute the NFL, all of whom sold their souls to the Devil in exchange for a few extra decibels of arousal. In fact, up until the last decade, Michigan Stadium crowds were frequently disparaged for behaving more like an audience at a symphony -- clapping at appropriate times, looking on in silence during the rest -- than a throng at a football game. Whether or not the criticism was fair mattered little (nor does the fact that King’s replacement, Carl Grapentine, is -- of all things -- a deejay for a classical music radio station). Michigan fans didn’t care. We didn’t need piped-in music or pleas for cheering. All we wanted was our beautiful metaphor, the steady drone of Howard King’s voice punctuating another methodical march down the field.
To those who watched carefully, King was once again present at The Big House this past Saturday afternoon, though this time, it was not his voice which greeted fans but, rather, his image. Since the arrival of coach Jim Harbaugh last season, Michigan’s game day field entrance has been preceded by a video montage -- narrated by another iconic Michigan voice, James Earl Jones -- featuring footage of Michigan greats from all walks of University life: astronauts, United States Presidents, professors, former athletes, television personalities, and olympians. Each week, the video changes ever so slightly, substituting a picture here or there so as to keep the cast in fresh rotation. In the most recent edition, someone in the athletic department had decided to slip in a black and white shot of King glancing at the camera from his regular perch, in front of a microphone in the old Michigan Stadium press box. How many other fanbases would recognize a mugshot of their former public address announcer? Yet it was unmistakable. For a split second, he was there.
The powers that be have not been kind to Michigan Football fans for much of the past decade, yet I’m not talking about phantom forces or the proverbial Big Man Upstairs. Most notably through the amalgam of quagmires brought on by former athletic director Dave Brandon, those who’ve stayed have felt the foundation of the community tested again and again by higher ups who’ve tried to reboot and rebrand Michigan Football for their warped, data-driven concept of the twenty-first century. Too often during that time, Michigan fans have been told their program is something that it isn’t: an alt-rock jam named “In The Big House”; a two-tickets-for-a-bottle-of-Co
Given extensive work commitments and a second “career” within the 80s synth music revival scene, I had decided to forego the annual diary series this year. But with multiple diary series AWOL, I figured I what the heck.
This year I’ll be reviewing the week’s best and worst performances in the conference, using boxing as a metaphor.
All contests fall into one of four categories:
- KOs, TKOs and Unanimous Decisions (i.e. emphatic wins/upset wins)
- Split Decisions (i.e. wobbly wins)
- Moral Victories (i.e. losses you can take heart in)
- Out Cold (i.e. losses that make pandas sad)
Note: this is a week-by-week thing, not a power ranking type thing. Previous performances only come into play when ranking within these categories. I will, however, comment on the team’s overall performance and outlook in the comments.
[Rankings in parentheses.]
KOs, TKOs and Unanimous Decisions
1. OSU (3) beats Oklahoma (14) 45-24 on the road.
Whether OSU is really that good or Oklahoma is just worse than expected is a matter of debate; as far as I’m concerned, it’s both. Oklahoma certainly has not looked like a playoff contender so far, and that probably contributed to the way this game played out. That said, this young OSU team actually looks better than they did a year ago this time, when the roster was heavy with NFL-bound upperclassmen. They may still drop an egg at some point, but this was a big test and the Buckeyes passed it with ease. A potentially/hopefully momentum-killing bye week beckons, after which Rutgers offers itself up for ritual sacrifice.
2. MSU (12) beats Notre Dame (18) 36-28 on the road.
MSU’s anemic victory over Furman led a lot of people to question whether this Spartan team lived up to the standard set by the last three. But even if this Notre Dame team was overrated going into the game, a road victory over a ranked team is no small feat—especially considering ND’s recent success in the series. Simply put, had MSU played like they did against Furman, they would have lost. Instead, MSU’s offense clicked and the defense got just enough plays out of its experienced linebacking corps to hold off a last ditch comeback attempt. We’ll see whether this was a one-off performance or something more sustainable when they play Wisconsin at Camp Randall.
3. Nebraska (NR) beats Oregon (22) 35-32 at home.
Nebraska has a good roster...by Big 10 West standards. They did last year as well, and probably should have won 8-9 games. Unfortunately, they were really, really unlucky, leaving them with a 5-7 record instead. Things seem to be going better in the fortune department now, as evidenced by this close win over a not-quite-what-they-used-to-be-but-still-ranked (barely) Oregon team. 9-3 seems attainable for the Huskers, who get Northwestern, Illinois and Purdue over the next four games.
4. Michigan (4) beats Colorado (NR) 45-28 at home.
By far the wobbliest of the four convincing victories, and a game in which a better-than-expected Colorado spent two quarters looking like they were primed for the upset. Then Colorado’s QB got hurt and Michigan wreaked its horrible vengeance upon the Buffaloes. Fans can either take refuge in the fact that the team has the skill and heart to recover from early adversity, or worry endlessly about the erratic safety, OL and QB play, all of which seemed to confirm preseason anxieties about those positions. Both are legitimate reactions to a victory that never seemed as emphatic as the final score implies. Next up: a mediocre Penn State team with one very scary running back.
Split Decision Wins
5. Maryland (NR) beats UCF 30-24 on the road.
Not a great win by any stretch of the imagination, but UCF is at least okay and Maryland were playing on the road. So that’s something I guess. Next up: a game.
6. Penn State (NR) beats Temple 34-27 at home.
Penn State decided to memorialize the man who allegedly kept quiet for decades about a serial child molester by eking out a home win against Temple. Can’t we just trade them to the ACC already?
7. Northwestern (NR) beats Duke (NR) 24-13 at home.
Northwestern finally gets a win—over a bad Duke team, sure, but hey—a win is better than another loss, I guess.
10. Wisconsin (9) beats Georgia State (NR) 23-17 at home.
It’s getting hard to remember that Wisconsin beat a top 5 SEC West team just two weeks ago. The Badgers looked downright bad as they barely scraped by winless Georgia State, and the murderers’ row portion of their schedule looms large. Will fans remember the opener if they go 6-6?
9. Rutgers (NR) beats New Mexico (NR) 37-28 at home.
Another week, another bad performance by Rutgers, who may not win another game all year.
10. Iowa (13) loses to North Dakota (NR) 23-31 at home.
Uninspired and uninspiring performance by the presumptive Big 10 West favorites. Iowa still has plenty of time to recover, but expectations for the season have officially been tempered. Iowa’s next two opponents—Rutgers and Northwestern—offer Kirk Ferentz a great pair of opportunities to right the ship and start earning that $48m extension.
11. Illinois (NR) loses to Western Michigan (NR) 34-10 at home.
Granted, WMU is a good MAC team, but they are still a MAC team, and any game in which you get steamrolled—at home—by a MAC team is a bad, bad game. Illinois is bad and should feel bad.
BYES: Minnesota, Indiana, Purdue