As we find ourselves in a bit of a lull between the regular season and bowl games I thought I’d take the time to post about my 2017 college football experience. I am single with no kids, and being in sales my manager allows me a fairly flexible work schedule so long as I hit my numbers.
So I have decided to take advantage of this time in my life and opportunity to indulge in one of my favorite things, college football. I absolutely love Michigan football, but I also really enjoy experiencing new stadiums, campuses, fanbases, etc. So this fall I set out to check off a few more boxes. Here goes….
September 9 – Stanford (24) @ USC (42)
I really thought Stanford was going to take it to the Trojans. My Stanford buddy and I took Stanford +6 and we never had a chance. I recall after seeing this USC offense that they might go undefeated this season and wished Michigan could have one of their two superb backs who combined for 235 on 34 carries.
I did not take a wide shot picture from my seat probably because I’ve been to several games at the Coliseum. But I did think it was interesting that you could definitely tell where the student section started and stopped based on brand new shirts compared to those that have been washed and faded over the years.
September 16 – LSU (7) @ Mississippi State (37)
This was my second LSU away game (last year’s loss to Wisconsin at Lambeau). The Tigers were 2-0 going into this game and there was no reason to expect this result. This team looked confused and undisciplined all over the field. In fact I believe two LSU DLinemen were ejected for dangerous and absurdly stupid hits to the Bulldogs QB within minutes in the3rd quarter.
This was first time to Starkville and hopefully my last. The cowbells were just awful (akin to vuvuzelas) and it just boggles my mind that they are allowed to bring them into the stadium. They do mostly stop ringing them when the opposing team comes to the line of scrimmage, but they begin ringing them right after the ball is snapped. I also can’t believe they are allowed to ring them when the opposing team is huddling up, there is just not a chance at any verbal communication outside of shouting in the huddle. It made for a brutal neutral/opposing fan experience and I never plan to subject myself to that shit again.
Here you can see that they’ve set the stadium up so you can actually sit outside near the south endzone and watch the game on the big screen above the north endzone. That seemed unique in all my travels. This was after the game was no longer in doubt, so I’m sure it was packed at the beginning of the game.
September 17 – Pats (won) @ Saints (lost)
October 14 – Auburn (23) @ LSU (27)
After that loss to Mississippi State and then the embarrassment by Troy I don’t think anyone saw this one coming. And by halftime it looked like Auburn would walk away with a fairly easy victory. But LSU scored the only points in the 2nd half, 13 all in the 4th quarter to pretty much save their season and probably Coach O’s job.
This was something I don’t really think I’d seen before. Players were holding up these banners/flags to, I can only assume, hide the coach’s whiteboard from lookie loos in the Auburn press box. Seemed overly paranoid to me, but maybe it’s been a thing in the past.
October 15 – Lions (lost) @ Saints (won)
November 4 – Oklahoma (62) @ Oklahoma State (52)
This was an area of the country I haven’t spent much time. This was my 2017 grad school buddy trip. Last year we did Florida @ Tennessee and this year we decided on the Bedlam Game for their hall pass weekend. We experienced a lot of great BBQ and the open carry law. We really wanted to place a wager on the game to make it more interesting. Last year we took the over and it helped pay for our dinner after the game. The over/under in this game was 76.5 which seemed pretty high. But this was a Big12 game and not Michigan State v. Iowa so we decided to take our chances. It was 38-38 AT HALFTIME. This made the game very enjoyable from that standpoint.
And I didn’t have to look far for the obligatory….
And as Game Day was in town that weekend we got to meet Lee Corso very early Sunday morning at the airport. I’ve been in the “he really should just retire” camp the past few years. But man after meeting him he’s such a nice and charming guy I have backed off that stance. I hope he can continue for years to come.
November 18 – Cal (14) @ Stanford (17)
A few of us went to the Stanford @ Cal game in the pouring rain last year. I had never been to a game on the farm so decided sort of last minute (night before) to fly up Saturday morning to catch this game. I actually did something that I don’t usually do when I go to games, I took the time to walk the (athletic) campus a bit. Not surprisingly it is all very impressive. I have to say it would be tough to turn down Stanford if you’re an athlete in just about any sport, and they have the Director’s Cup results to back that up.
I have always considered Cal to be Michigan’s sister school from school colors to the education to the campus politics. Crazy Cal kids…
This picture was taken inside the gates after they scan your ticket. They have beautiful landscaping all around the outside of their stadium. They haven’t touched the bathrooms/concession stands since they built the stadium, but it really is a great environment, highly recommend it.
November 25 – Michigan/OSU
I’ve only missed a handful of OSU home games since the early 90s even though I’ve really not lived in Michigan since about 2000. I did not want this year to be one of those years even though I knew it would be JOK getting the starting nod. I’ve got nothing groundbreaking to say about the game.
But I will say for those that live in/near Michigan and are able to attend a lot of games, coming back for a game or two each year truly is for me a highlight of every year. I’ve brought numerous friends back for games and to see our campus over the years. I am proud of our university regardless of our wins and losses. As this post signifies I’ve been to dozens of campuses and it really doesn’t get much better than what we’ve got at Michigan, go blue.
I checked off 3 new P5 stadium boxes this fall which now puts me at 22 total. Here is my list in no particular order:
Florida/Georgia Cocktail Party - Jacksonville
One last thing, In my previous company I used to work with a real ass hat that was a big Louisville fan/alum/arrogant loudmouth. After the championship game against them I mentioned that it was a shame that the refs ruined the end of our game with that terrible foul call on Trey Burke. He commented that it was indeed the right call because Burke impeded his way to the basket. Then he threw in this diddy, “you should stick to things you know about in Michigan, like asparagus”. So I did what any Michigan asparagus-loving fan would do, I anonymously sent him this:
The coaches poll, Harris poll and Computers each count for 1/3 of a team's BCS ranking.
The coaches poll was released earlier today was not kind to the Cowboys. With 59 total voters, Bama totaled a 32 point edge. While we don't know for certain how this broke down, this result is equivalent to 14 coaches voting the Cowboys 2nd and Bama 3rd (23.7%), 44 voting for Bama 2nd and (nt)OSU 3rd (74.6%) and one voting for Bama 2nd and OSU 4th (1.7%).
This was a significantly worse result for the Cowboys than what they got in the AP where Alabama garnered a 16 point edge with a total of 60 voters.
Given that both the Coaches and AP polls broke for Alabama, the Cowboys' hopes seem to hinge on getting help from the computers. There are 6 computer rankings. The highest and lowest result for each team gets dropped. Last week 4 of the 6 computers put Alabama at 2nd and OSU 3rd and the remaining 2 put Oklahoma State 2nd and Alabama 3rd.
If these results hold or the Cowboys are only able to flip one computer, their chance at a title game is functionally zero.
If they flip two computers this will be the computer score
This would nearly wipe out Bama's edge gained from the Coaches poll, but OSU would still need to top Bama by a slim margin in the Harris poll to get a title shot. Given the results from the Coaches and AP polls, this seems unlikely, though not impossible.
If they flip 3 or 4 computers this will be the computer score: OSU: .96 Bama: .92 The remainder of this analysis will deal with this possibility.
UPDATE: 2 computer rankings (Sagarin and Wolfe) have been released they both have Bama 2nd. This means OSU flipping 3 or 4 computers is no longer a possibility. OSU will have to at minimum gain 5 points on Alabama in the Harris poll to go to the BCS. This means they will need to top Bama on 52.18% of Harris poll ballots assuming neither team is ranked beneath 3rd.
Assuming OSU flips 3 or all 4 computers, Bama would have to make up a .0183 edge in the Harris poll. (The difference in computer score and coaches score) The Harris Poll has 115 voters. For Bama to overtake OSU they would need to be placed 53 spots above the Cowboys in the aggregate. Assuming all voters put Bama and OSU in some comination of 2nd and 3rd Bama would need 84 of the 115 voters (73%) to rank them 2nd. For perspective, if the Harris poll comes out with similar results to the coaches poll Bama will top OSU by ,0034 points. If it comes out with similar results the AP the Cowboys will overtake Bama by .0063.
- If the Cowboys can't flip a computer, or only flip one they are doomed.
- If they flip 2 it is still highly unlikely they get to the National Championship
If the Cowboys flip 3 or 4, Bama will need at least 73% of Harris poll voters to rank them 2nd, assuming all voters rank Bama and OSU at least 3rd.
For the non mathematically inclined: If the Cowboys flip 3 or 4 computers and the Harris voters rank the teams as the coaches did it's rematch time. If the Harris voters rank the teams like the AP did T Boone will be very happy.
- If Richard Billingsly (computer) keeps Bama at 2 they are definitely in.
- If Billingsly switches OSU and Bama OSU must gain 5 points on Bama in the Harris poll. This means they would need 52.18% of Harris voters to put them above Bama assuming neither team gets ranked below 3rd. Given the results of the coaches and AP poll this seems unlikely.
- The Tide will likely roll to a rematch.
If Ok St. jumps Alabama to get into the BCS NCG vs LSU, assuming Michigan is a BCS qualifier, what does that mean for us? The first thing it means is that Alabama is guaranteed a spot in the Sugar Bowl as there is an SEC tie-in. That also means the Fiesta Bowl has the first TWO choices. They have the first choice as a replacement pick for Ok St. and the next pick as their regular selection (Fiesta, Sugar, Orange).
Does the Fiesta select Michigan and Stanford? I guess another way of putting it is CAN the Fiesta select BOTH Michigan AND Stanford? Does the Rose Bowl have an exclusive in the BCS on a B1G-PAC12 matchup (aside from the NCG. If Alabama does not go to the NCG, there is a very good possibility that the FIESTA picks Michigan. Who would they be paired with. My guess is K-State for the same reason Alabama would go to the Sugar.
This is absolutely awful, especially since the men's basketball plane crash back in Jan. 2001 is still in many of Oklahoma State fans' minds. Prayers go out to the Cowboys and Stillwater.
Between ESPN & CBS, there are 3 possibilities for the opponent (yes, this assumes nothing strange happens and Michigan goes to the Gator Bowl):
Not much hope for an easy opponent among those 3, but certainly 3 different styles.
Via the Kalamazoo Gazette:
In April, the Gull Lake all-state baseball player accepted a scholarship offer to the University of Michigan. Weeks later, he re-opened his recruitment.
Recently, Fish was invited to be the lone Michigan representative and labeled among the top 60 from the U.S. to partake in the Power Showcase International High School Home Run Derby Dec. 27-30 at Chase Field in Phoenix.
This afternoon in the main conference room at Gull Lake High School, Fish will sign a national letter-of-intent with Oklahoma State University.
It goes on to say they offered 70% scholarship, and that he was sold on the Big XII's ability to produce more pro players and the Big XII's 16-4 record against the Big Ten last year.
Today was early signing day for quite a few Michigan sports. Baseball is yet to publish the list of early signees, but I expect it out in the next few days.