In much speculation about how Michigan's first year under RRod will reflect his first years at his previous teams, I think it is only right to look at RRod's first year at WVU and his first year at WVU with Barwis. In his first year he took over a team who probably did not produce one NFL player and went 3-8. Implementing his system was going to be hard with the talent he had inherited. Obviously it did not go well. But there may be another reason.
Recently in an article about Barwis at the freepress, it stated how Barwis has been with RRod for 5 years now. So 5 football seasons takes us back to the WVU football season 2002, RRods 2nd year. He goes 9-4, losing one Big East game to Miami (who made a pass interference against OSU 10 seconds after the final play). He would win the next 3-Big East Titles.
So we can attribute success in year two at WVU with two separate things: 1 - Still poorly talented team adjusted to the system he brought in and won an extra 6 games, or 2 - Barwis got a year to train poorly skilled players getting them in shape enough to run this offense. Which do you think makes more of an impact?
I like the latter, it seems to make more sense. So there is something his first team at Michigan will have that his first team at WVU did not have (other than talent) and that's an off-season of world class training. So I remain optimistic that this year will go a lot better than most expect.
On a side note, in RRods 3rd season at WVU, he played Maryland (OOC game) regular season and in the bowl game. Lost the regular season match up 7-34 and then lost in the bowl game 7-41. Lets hope he never schedules Maryland for an OOC game at Michigan.