We should beat UCF, obviously, but that game scares the crap out of me. Even if all they get are state of Florida "leftovers" from FSU, UF, Miami, they still field a very good team.
Minor Schedule Additions Official
WE'RE SORT OF PLAYING NOTRE DAME GUYS!
That leaked PDF immediately preceding the UCLA series announcement was dead on so far, as Michigan has just announced that three other items from that thing are accurate:
Michigan will host Central Florida at the Big House on Sept. 10, 2016, in what will be the first meeting between the two institutions on the gridiron. The Ball State game, originally slated for Sept. 24, 2016, will be played at a future date yet to be determined. Michigan will play three straight home games to open the 2016 season, bookending the Hawaii (Sept. 3) and Colorado (Sept. 17) games around the match-up with Central Florida. The Wolverines will have an open date before starting the nine-game Big Ten Conference schedule.
In 2017, the Air Force Academy will make its third trip to Ann Arbor for a Sept. 16 game.
4/4, that PDF, so we're waiting on the announcement that Michigan will play Florida on the moon. Nonconference schedules 2016-2018 are now, unconfirmed games in italics:
2016: Hawaii, UCF, Colorado
2017: Florida[?!?!?!], Cincinnati, Air Force
2018: Arkansas, TBA, SMU
Insert usual complaint about neutral site games: it would be much more awesome to play in the Swamp and get a return date TBA than show up in Atlanta for a "neutral site" matchup.
by then Blake Bortles will be long gone. Bortles is a future 1st rounder IMO (not at 2014 draft but for 2015 draft). #BORTLESKOMBAT
They just beat Lousiville. Gah, it galls me that Michigan looks up to the likes of Louisville and UCF.
but in the AP top 25, Louisville is 18, UCF is 21, and UofM is 24.
Yeah, but the 17 spots above Louisville were reserved for 1-2 loss SEC teams, which tells you exactly what you need to know about polls. There aren't even 17 SEC teams, the AP just oversigned in case they needed to make room.
in the top 10 prior to their loss to UCF.
that's there's no "should" about it. That is a program and a school on the rise. It is the biggest u in Florida and the second-biggest in the nation, in an area that is growing quickly. They will never be anything to trifle with again. They just beat Louisville and almost beat USC earlier in the year.
The family that I married into comes from Oviedo, where UCF is located, and they all went to UF. But my father-in-law was telling me Saturday that the football players in the area are quickly becoming oriented to UCF as a destination school. I'm curious whether UF (where I did my doctorate) is the ultimate loser in some of these turf battles.
The simple fact that my 8 year old son's favorite teams are Michigan and UCF speaks volumes. All he'll ever know is that he went to a bunch of UCF games and they were pretty darn good. I think the kids graduating high school right now are probably some of the first to have that same experience. In other words, UCF has been a competitive program since they have been playing football and so why not consider it as a viable option if you want to play good football, stay near home, and aren't quite good enough to either be recruited or get sure playing time at UF, FSU, Miami?
Eh, I'm not buying it. First, lots and lots of schools recruit Florida - not just the big three in-state schools. And outside of the kids who really don't want to be far from home, it will be tough for UCF to compete with GT, Clemson, South Carolina, the MS schools, etc. for recruits. That leaves them with some slim pickings if they want to compete with the top BCS schools.
Other schools have tried to do this - take the top leftovers from their talent rich state, and it sometimes works for a handful of years (TCU, Fresno St, SDSU, USF) but it's never been sustainable. They'll never be able to keep a good coach and they'll never be able to recruit well enough year in and year out.
They need to get into a real conference.
Agreed, and that's not happening any time soon. UCF brings absolutely nothing to the table that appeals to any of the major conferences.
it takes time, but I think UCF will continue their progression upwards, both athletically and academically. They have a LOT going for them.
FWIW, their history below. They've taken an upwards step on a regular basis nearly every 5 years (yes, I think AAC > Conference-USA). If I had to guess where they are in 2023, I'd guess in some version of the current Big XII.
34 years ago (1979, 1st year playing football), UCF was in Division 3.
25 years ago (1988), UCF was in Division 2
20 years ago (1993), UCF was in Division 1-AA.
15 years ago (1998), UCF was a Division 1-A Independent.
10 years ago (2003), UCF was in the MAC.
5 years ago (2008), UCF was in Conference-USA.
Today (2013), UCF is in the AAC.
10 years from now (2023), UCF is ???.
Look - I'm not saying UCF will never go up from where they currently are, just that they'll never be better than a very good mid-major type program (by never, I really mean in the foreseeable future. Who knows what the landscape will be 50 years from now). But to be compared to an actual BCS level team (let alone a top-25 team) they have a really long way to go.
The have no fanbase. They averaged less than 35k per home game last year despite the team being good and many of the home games were against good opponents. This fact alone will keep them from getting into a good league and will continue to deter solid prospects. This also prevents the program from making the money it needs to improve.
The have a very small athletic department. UCF offers 6 mens sports.
UCF has actually been recruiting worse as of late than they were the handful of years prior. UCF hasn't signed (or in the case of 2014, received a verbal from) a single 4-star recruit since 2011. Their current class is ranked 73rd by 247, which is solid for a mid-major, but below just about every BCS conference program.
Look, UCF got lucky with Bortles - he was a guy no one else really wanted and he turned out to be a solid QB. That will not happen often. And while George O'Leary is a solid coach, he's 67 and won't be there much longer.
I see why UCF can be a competitive AAC-type program. They have everything that any other program in that league has (or most of them at least). I just don't see why UCF will every be better than a USF or Houston or Fresno State type of program.
which means that we're going to play another game against a deceptively-talented program trying to make a name for itself that will regard a victory against Michigan as "program defining" while we regard it as a ho-hum expected conquest. Let's hope we're better prepared than we were in 2007.
o'leary can coach. he's good.
so MANBALL vs. MANBALL?
Not sure if Beilema will still be in Arkansas in '18.
that he won't. You wear a permasneer like that in the south you need to be able to back it up. . . and with something more than Beats headphones.
Well, if you used present averages, it would be Manball that can at least score more often than not in the case of Michigan versus Manball with a compound fracture of the femur, as is the case for Arkansas right now. Not sure what the situation will be by the time we get to those games, of course.
If we had to do a neutral site game with Florida, if it was in Indianapolis that would make me feel better. Just somewhere that doesn't give the SEC a huge advantage like the Cowboy Classic.
I really don't think it was the location of the game that gave Alabama it's advantage.
Maybe all neutral site games should be literally (as close to) equidistant from each campus. That would put Michigan-Florida in Nashville. Ok, maybe not so good from a conference bias perspective. They could make it a rule that the neutral site game cannot be within the respective teams' conference footprints.
Michigan-Florida at Mile High Stadium!! (or whatever it's called now)
Michigan vs Florida will be at Jerry World, I'm hearing that from people who would know this kind of thing.
Delightful. Last time was so much fun.
I'm hoping the basketball team got rid of all the bad Jerry World mojo.
[Insert Sad Gator gif here]
Why do we have to play there again? Why not a game in the northeast in Metlife Stadium if we're going to play in an enormo-stadium that's far from home? That'd be better from an alumni perspective and also change it up a bit.
Because Florida won't play outside of its own footprint. I honestly don't remember the last time it left SEC territory for anywhere besides a bowl game.
outside the Southeast (minus a bowl game) in 1991 at Syracuse. Since the 70's 3 road games to non-conference opponents
1991 at Syracuse
1989 at Memphis
1981 at Southern Cal
Before that, here and there games at Rice and Houston when the Southwest Conference was still a thing.
Bowl games, Florida's left the Southeast twice since an early 90's trip to Hawaii, both times in the BCS National Championship game.
Dallas is hardly in the Southeast, and besides, Ann Arbor is only about 150 miles farther away from Jerry World than Gainesvile is (about 1150 miles vs 1000 miles).
First we reschedule Appalachian State, now we are we playing Air Force again too? For real, what is with the masochistic scheduling?
We had to put Appy State on, it was part of the original contract. I will be there come hell or highwater to watch the opening day win we expected for our classes senior year in 2008 or a second loss that will melt my ability to believe in anythign ever again.
This is the first time I've heard that claim. The second game certainly was announced as a new deal, and how in the world would Appy State have the leverage to insist that Michigan play them twice?
Sorry, this doesn't make any sense at all, given the news stories released when the games were scheduled.
They scheduled the first game against Appalachian State as a single game. They scheduled this second game as a direct response to the fact that Appalachian State won the first game. They made that pretty clear--that Appalachian State was (supposedly) a desirable opponent only because of the result of the first Appalachian State-Michigan game.
Compared to the past few years this schedule is a step up: Hawaii or AFU are probably the easiest games on that list (things could change in the next 5 years). No Delaware St or UMass (though they are now FBS) at least.
This scheduling change is likely due to the shift from the BCS to the playoff. At least the powers that be recognized the change and made some schedule adjustments.
If UCF wins out this year, which judging by their schedule, there is a good possibility that they do, they will be playing in a BCS BOWL where anything can happen. That will help their recruiting a ton, as of beating Louisville at Louisville, in a night game, on a national stage didn't already help. They're a program on the rise. They will have to replace Bortles, but they should still be good. One thing is clear, I'm glad we aren't playing them this year.
UCF does not win out.
In fact I think Rutgers will beat them as well... though I'm not as confident.
I'd love for a home and home against Florida, but when was the last time Florida went above the Mason-Dixon Line for anything? To send its troops to fight at Gettysburg?
Odds are we'll end up with some BS "neutral site" game in Atlanta.
@Syracuse in 1991.