Michigan as Underdog v. OSU - Historical Encouragement

Submitted by Brady2Terrell on November 16th, 2009 at 11:15 AM
Last week I delved into Big Ten history to analyze what beginning your tenure with two losing seasons has meant as a Big Ten coach, but did so while acknowledging that we weren't there yet.  With this week now being the only stop-gap we have to entering that forlorn territory, I decided to take a look at how Michigan v. OSU has broken down over the years with an eye toward the teams' performances outside of The Game.

Saturday will mark the 106th meeting between the Big Ten's two dominant programs, and in the 105 previous meetings, there have been 93 occasions where one team's record was better than the other's outside of The Game (twelve times we have been otherwise identical, most recently in 2006).

Overall, the "favorite" (as I'll call them - this means a better record that year outside of The Game, not what a Vegas line or other indicators may have predicted) has won 63% of the games, the underdog 32%, and 5% have been ties.  Interestingly, in the twelve games we've been "even odds," Michigan has won 7 to OSU's 3 (with 2 ties), meaning with otherwise equal teams we've gotten the better of tOSU.

In the 43 games where Michigan has had the better record, M is 31-11-1 (72%/26%/2%), a pretty good record of taking care of business.  And this is where it gets interesting...

In the 50 games where tOSU has had the better record, the Buckeyes have only won 56% of the matchups, with Michigan winning 38% and 6% ending in ties (28-19-3).  The bunch from Columbus have done a much more lackluster job of winning when they should than have the Wolverines in this rivalry.

Even more striking - and this is where I draw my hope for this week from - in the nine games where OSU has been three or more games better than Michigan, the record is OSU 5, Michigan 4 (55% - 44%).  The most recent of these was obviously last year, which doesn't lend much hope, but prior to that the most recent three were 1996, 1995, and 1993.  In each of those games, OSU entered dominant with a shot at a national title riding on the line, and Michigan rose to the occasion to get the job done.  I would submit that this year's OSU team is drastically inferior to each of those teams, and while we're inferior to the mid-90s teams as well, the numbers indicate that the dropoff ratio is similar.

This, combined with playing back in the Big House, gives me hope for Saturday.  Let's get this scarlet&grey monkey off our backs and begin to turn the tide, Go Blue!

(records below have Michigan v. OSU impact removed)

      Record "The Game"
Year M Record OSU Record Differential Winner
1947 9 - 0 2 - 5 - 1 + 6 Michigan
1897 5 - 1 1 - 6 - 1 + 4.5 Michigan
1943 7 - 1 3 - 5 + 4 Michigan
1901 10 - 0 5 - 2 - 1 + 3.5 Michigan
1904 9 - 0 6 - 4 + 3.5 Michigan
1923 7 - 0 3 - 3 - 1 + 3.5 Michigan
1988 8 - 2 - 1 4 - 5 - 1 + 3.5 Michigan
1931 8 - 0 - 1 5 - 3 + 3 Ohio State
1971 10 - 1 6 - 3 + 3 Michigan
1999 9 - 2 6 - 5 + 3 Michigan
1902 10 - 0 6 - 1 - 2 + 2.5 Michigan
1922 5 - 0 - 1 3 - 3 + 2.5 Michigan
1903 10 - 0 - 1 8 - 2 + 2 Michigan
1940 6 - 1 4 - 3 + 2 Michigan
1948 8 - 0 6 - 2 + 2 Michigan
1972 10 - 0 8 - 2 + 2 Ohio State
1992 9 - 0 - 2 8 - 3 + 2 Tie
2001 8 - 3 6 - 5 + 2 Ohio State
1905 11 - 1 8 - 1 - 2 + 1.5 Michigan
1918 4 - 0 3 - 2 + 1.5 Michigan
1921 5 - 0 - 1 4 - 2 + 1.5 Ohio State
1924 5 - 2 2 - 2 - 3 + 1.5 Michigan
1925 6 - 1 4 - 2 - 1 + 1.5 Michigan
1929 5 - 2 - 1 3 - 3 - 1 + 1.5 Ohio State
1930 7 - 0 - 1 5 - 1 - 1 + 1.5 Michigan
1932 7 - 0 4 - 0 - 3 + 1.5 Michigan
1974 10 - 0 9 - 2 + 1.5 Ohio State
1978 9 - 2 7 - 3 - 1 + 1.5 Michigan
1987 8 - 3 5 - 3 - 1 + 1.5 Ohio State
1997 11 - 0 10 - 2 + 1.5 Michigan
1927 5 - 2 4 - 3 + 1 Michigan
1938 5 - 1 - 1 4 - 2 - 1 + 1 Michigan
1955 7 - 1 6 - 2 + 1 Ohio State
1970 9 - 0 8 - 1 + 1 Ohio State
1981 9 - 2 8 - 3 + 1 Ohio State
1989 9 - 2 8 - 3 + 1 Michigan
1991 9 - 2 8 - 3 + 1 Michigan
1946 5 - 2 - 1 4 - 2 - 2 + 0.5 Michigan
1964 8 - 1 7 - 1 + 0.5 Michigan
1966 5 - 4 4 - 4 + 0.5 Michigan
1985 9 - 1 - 1 9 - 2 + 0.5 Michigan
1990 8 - 3 7 - 3 - 1 + 0.5 Michigan
1994 8 - 3 8 - 4 + 0.5 Ohio State
1911 4 - 1 - 2 5 - 2 - 2 0 Michigan
1933 7 - 0 7 - 0 0 Michigan
1941 6 - 1 6 - 1 0 Tie
1952 5 - 3 5 - 3 0 Ohio State
1956 6 - 2 6 - 2 0 Michigan
1973 10 - 0 10 - 0 0 Tie
1977 9 - 2 9 - 2 0 Michigan
1980 9 - 2 9 - 2 0 Michigan
1982 8 - 3 8 - 3 0 Ohio State
1986 10 - 2 10 - 2 0 Michigan
2000 8 - 3 8 - 3 0 Michigan
2006 11 - 1 11 - 1 0 Ohio State
1908 4 - 2 - 1 6 - 3 - 0.5 Michigan
1909 5 - 1 7 - 2 - 0.5 Michigan
1912 4 - 2 5 - 2 - 0.5 Michigan
1944 8 - 1 8 - 0 - 0.5 Ohio State
1959 3 - 5 3 - 4 - 1 - 0.5 Michigan
1963 3 - 3 - 2 4 - 3 - 1 - 0.5 Ohio State
1976 9 - 2 9 - 1 - 1 - 0.5 Michigan
1998 10 - 2 10 - 1 - 0.5 Ohio State
1900 7 - 2 8 - 1 - 1 Tie
1926 6 - 1 7 - 0 - 1 Michigan
1928 3 - 3 - 1 4 - 2 - 1 - 1 Ohio State
1937 4 - 3 5 - 2 - 1 Ohio State
1939 5 - 2 6 - 1 - 1 Michigan
1942 7 - 2 8 - 1 - 1 Ohio State
1949 6 - 2 7 - 1 - 1 - 1 Tie
1950 5 - 3 - 1 6 - 2 - 1 Michigan
1953 5 - 3 6 - 2 - 1 Michigan
1960 5 - 3 6 - 2 - 1 Ohio State
1968 8 - 1 9 - 0 - 1 Ohio State
1975 8 - 1 - 2 10 - 1 - 1 Ohio State
1983 8 - 3 9 - 2 - 1 Michigan
2007 9 - 3 10 - 2 - 1 Ohio State
1907 4 - 1 7 - 1 - 1 - 1.5 Michigan
1910 3 - 0 - 2 6 - 0 - 3 - 1.5 Tie
1920 4 - 2 6 - 1 - 1.5 Ohio State
1945 6 - 3 7 - 1 - 1.5 Michigan
1961 6 - 2 7 - 0 - 1 - 1.5 Ohio State
1967 4 - 5 5 - 3 - 1.5 Ohio State
1919 3 - 3 5 - 1 - 2 Ohio State
1935 4 - 3 6 - 1 - 2 Ohio State
1951 3 - 5 4 - 2 - 2 - 2 Michigan
1957 5 - 2 - 1 8 - 1 - 2 Ohio State
1969 7 - 3 8 - 0 - 2 Michigan
1979 8 - 3 10 - 1 - 2 Ohio State
1984 6 - 5 8 - 3 - 2 Ohio State
2003 9 - 3 11 - 1 - 2 Michigan
2004 9 - 2 7 - 4 - 2 Ohio State
2005 7 - 4 9 - 2 - 2 Ohio State
1954 6 - 2 9 - 0 - 2.5 Ohio State
1965 4 - 5 6 - 2 - 2.5 Ohio State
2002 10 - 2 13 - 0 - 2.5 Ohio State
1906 3 - 1 8 - 0 - 3 Michigan
1936 1 - 6 4 - 3 - 3 Ohio State
1962 2 - 6 5 - 3 - 3 Ohio State
1995 8 - 4 11 - 1 - 3 Michigan
1958 2 - 5 - 1 5 - 1 - 2 - 3.5 Ohio State
1993 7 - 4 10 - 0 - 1 - 3.5 Michigan
1996 7 - 4 11 - 0 - 4 Michigan
2009 5 - 6 9 - 2 - 4 ??????
1934 1 - 6 6 - 1 - 5 Ohio State
2008 3 - 8 9 - 3 - 5.5 Ohio State

Comments

WinWithPeople

November 16th, 2009 at 12:53 PM ^

just pointing out that the most recent victories by MIchigan against a large win differential occurred during the tenture of 2-10-1 Cooper, he the master of the ultimate choke-job. Say what you want about Tressel's uber-conservative coaching philosophy, but the guy understands The Game and gets his players ready for the fight. I don't think you catch this team unawares, and although I see a fiery Michigan team hanging around for a few quarters, the talent discrepancy here will catch up with the teams by the end of the game (as was the case last year).

Don

November 16th, 2009 at 11:54 AM ^

That's being charitable. But, there's always a chance. We're capable of playing well on defense and offense, but our problem has been sustaining it for the entire game. Maybe this weekend we'll put it all together. Big upsets happen every year; why not this weekend?

summit595

November 16th, 2009 at 12:49 PM ^

A 38% chance of winning is better than what I would have given us before reading this post. Thanks for getting my hopes up only to be crushed Saturday afternoon.

Blue in Seattle

November 16th, 2009 at 1:08 PM ^

But the enjoyment of watching football is the emotion of it all. This is why sports shows can create a tagline, "and that's why they play the game" and use it after hours of "analysis", and of course why fans will stay devoted to their belief that despite logic, maybe this time will be the one.

As a quick counter analysis of this mostly historical feel good lesson (which I appreciate greatly, and especially for this season) I looked up OSU and UM records for 1993, where UM was 7-4 and Ohio State was 10-0-1 under the infamous John Cooper.

UM losses compare to OSU; (H for UM or OSU home game, A for away)

ND 23-27 (H) - OSU did not play ND
MSU 7-17 (A) - OSU won 28-21 (H)
Illinois 21-24 (H) - OSU won 20-12 (A)
Wisconsin 10-13 (A) - OSU tied 14-14 (A)

UM beat Ohio State 28-0 at home.

I don't know how to explain that in logical terms.

I'm tired of logic, I know what it indicates.

Emotion, nay Hope, is all that's left.

Anyway you slice it, by 4pm EST on Saturday, it's all about the Basketball and Hockey.