fair point that
For Mgobloggers who played football at Michigan, how was Ohio State week different from others? Did you feel extra pressure to perform? Did you sense coaches feeling under the gun to win The Game? Were you honestly glad the season was almost done and you could soon return to a more normal student life? Did your team's practice intensity rise higher than other weeks? Was The Game buildup more of a media phenomenon and less so for players? Please share what you can with those of us who will never experience preparing as a player for college football's greatest rivalry game.
Following last second loss to MSU on Saturday, the mass media sure is playing up the future Buckeye departures to the NFL, questions about Meyer's leadership, loose lips sinking ships, and questions about team cohesion after the loss:
I did not expect this for an 10-1 team heading into big rivalry game, but there you have it.
I'm sure Ohio State will bring their best and try to end their season on a spectacular note in Ann Arbor.
I'm just surprised that Urban Meyer wouldn't re-assert control and put the kabosh on all the prima donnas players and their divisive comments.
As for future NFL depatures, I don't know that these talented players would have stayed anyway had they beaten MSU on Saturday. I think most were preparing to go anyway, because they can.
Should be a great game on Saturday for the seniors on both teams regardless.
After attending the Michigan-Northwestern game, everyone is trying to gauge Kareem Walker's interest in Michigan. In order to quell rampant rumors about his interest in Michigan, Walker released the following statement:
“I had a good trip to Michigan. It’s the second time I’ve been there but the first time with this staff. I have a friend on the team so it was good to see him as well. The game atmosphere was tremendous, fans really love the team. I enjoyed speaking with the coaches and meeting everyone.
“I know people are trying to figure my situation out and are creating rumors all over the place. I’m humbled that many people care about what I’m doing but at the same time I’m a low key guy and not looking to make a story for someone when there really isn’t any story. Yes, I will take all my visits. Right now, I don’t have the dates to where I’m headed next.”
While the purpose of Walker's statement is ostensibly to quell rumors of interest in Michigan, I'd have to say the above statement sounds as positive as one could hope for Michigan's chances. That he made a statement at all suggests he may be feeling some pressure to clarify his intentions.
Just win, baby. Do so and everything--including recruiting--takes care of itself.
Chris Dufresne is a Los Angeles Times' columnist covering football/basketball since 1995. He was California Sportswriter of the Year in 2011. He's no slouch.
About a month before college football season he writes a daily series of articles with his prediction and reasons why. Here's the complete list:
25. Michigan. 24. Nebraska. 23. Utah. 22. Missouri. 21. Arkansas. 20. Tennessee. 19. Boise State. 18. Oklahoma. 17. Notre Dame. 16. Wisconsin. 15. Georgia Tech. 14. UCLA. 13. Arizona. 12. Florida State. 11. Arizona State. 10. Georgia. 9. USC. 8. Auburn. 7.Clemson. 6. Baylor. 5. Michigan State. 4. Oregon. 3. Alabama. 2. Ohio State. 1. TCU.
Edit: This information came from reading, not from the internet. There are some bright people on this board, and a lot of bitchy snits. If you want Linc, watch Mod Sqad.
Maizenbrew has an interesting discussion between Drew Hallett and Anthony Broom on the chances of our Wolverines beating either the Spartans or the Buckeyes this year:
Their conclusion is that Michigan will not do it. They look at recent history, talent/matchups, home field advantage, general Harbaughness, etc. I would like to respectfully disagree with their conclusion. I think the general randomness of college football means that we can reasonably expect to savor an upset over a hated rival this year. I won’t go full Mathlete on you, but my reasoning is based on probability.
We’ve all become conditioned to expect the worst kind of luck persistently. When was the last time Michigan had a favorable turnover ratio? When was the last time turnovers broke even or better against a top 20 opponent? (The first B1G Michigan-Nebraska game? Yeah, it has been that long.) Even during the glory years, we all knew that in any given season Michigan was likely to have one “say what?!” loss against a clearly weaker team. When was the last time a top 20 team had an “off day” against us? Yeah, it’s been that long. My point being that luck changes season to season, game to game, or even play to play. (2011) To use the language of probability, football plays are independent variables. We don’t know what normal luck feels like anymore against MSU or OSU, but that can change in a moment.
To add some numbers to it, let me use one of the NOT fun facts from the article. Drew pointed out that Michigan is 2-12 in the last seven seasons’ worth of games with MSU & OSU. (Combine that with Michigan’s recent history in Bowl games, and the whole fan base heads for the rest room, but I digress…) Let’s apply a little probability analysis. Suppose that all seven years both the Spartans and the Buckeyes were clearly superior, such that they had an 80% chance of winning any given game. I don’t think it was near that bad, certainly not in some seasons, but let’s go with the pessimistic case to illustrate the point. If you apply math to these numbers, Michigan still should have won 3 games or more (55% of the time). Even assuming we stunk, we still should have gotten lucky more often than two times.
Turning to this season, we may not know exactly when or how the ball bounces in our favor, but the odds are reasonably good it will decisively bounce in our favor in one of those two games. (To use another illustration, Ohio State is the overwhelming favorite to repeat as National Champions. They will be favored in each and every one of their games, possibly excepting a playoff match-up. What is the chance someone other than OSU actually wins the Championship? Yes, a lot more than 50%.) Again, assume that this season the Spartans and the Buckeyes are clearly superior. Even if that is as much as a 70% chance, Michigan still has a 50% chance of winning one of those games (0.7 squared).
So I’m saying there’s a chance; a mathematically significant chance.
I know this is all with a grain of salt but interesting to take a look at the talent on the opposition. Mel has 6 OSU players ranked in the top 26 of next year's draft with Bosa 1 overall. Cardale Jones is listed as 25 which totally could be way off if he doesn't start this year. Interesting State has two, Conklin OT (#12) and Cook QB (#15), in the top 15 of the draft. I had no clue MSU had a near top ten offensive lineman on the roster. Also sad to see a couple near M recruiting hits (Treadwell and Cravens) on the list.