Per ESPN Polls: Michigan not in the running for Big 10 title, also not dissappointing

Submitted by Noleverine on May 14th, 2011 at 8:03 AM

Just stumbled across these on ESPN and thought some might find it interesting.  According to fan polls on ESPN, where we are included in none of the following categories: we are not an option to win the Big Ten, will not be competing in a "can't miss game," but will not be the most disappoint team, and don't have a chance of being a "surprise team."


Did ESPN forget we exist, or just have incredibly low expectations for us coming into this year?  I know it dosn't mean anything, but I found it interesting we did not even get a mention, aside from coaches on the hot seat, which, really guys?  Year one and Hoke is already considered on the hot seat?


Edit: Thanks for pointing it out, apparently we are included in the "Games to watch" poll.  Apparently overlooked it in my "Haven't slept in 22 hours and in the middle of a 17 hour shift at work" haze



May 14th, 2011 at 8:33 AM ^

Florida is not on the SEC championship ballot either. Apparently, perennial programs with hot new coaches are not expected to do much this year.

Born Blue

May 14th, 2011 at 8:33 AM ^

Our Coach is on the Hot Seat already, because he is ON FIRE!!!  Great hires, 10 recruits for 2012 & 1 already for 2013!!!  Energetic, enthusiastic, Brady un fuego!!


May 14th, 2011 at 8:50 AM ^

That is because they are going on what they are seeing from spring ball..... and not accounting for the UPCOMING METAMORPHASIS over the summer..... this is when everything will change, and when all these young players from RR will physically mature.....the team is growing back into the Michigan of old.......   and a word to the wise... consider betting on us to win the Big Ten title, based on the very favorable odds we'll get...


May 14th, 2011 at 9:00 AM ^

Good to know.  At least I can relax now and save a shit-ton of time and money without actually having to attend or watch the games this season.  Thanks ESPN, aspiring ruler of the universe.


May 14th, 2011 at 10:10 AM ^

We could have been put in most disappointing considering we start off 5-0 the past few seasons and absolutely were terrible the last 7 giving up 40+ points every game. They should have have made a segment for "Teams with most to prove"


May 14th, 2011 at 10:18 AM ^

To be fair, unless it is about the SEC, Texas, or USC, I don't think ESPN even acknowledges college football other places, so I'm not surprised their poll numbers would be inconsistent.

All that said, I'm not surprised that UM is being overlooked - this is a team coming off a 7-6 season with a new coach, even though signs point to this team winning more games and being on the rise.  Everyone is still 0-0, and I'm confident the team will make a solid run this year.


May 14th, 2011 at 10:35 AM ^

There's a brand new ESPN fan poll up:

"Do you think Ohio State cheated their way to Big 10 dominance this past decade?"

Here are the choices they give you on that one:



May 14th, 2011 at 11:04 AM ^

honestly, I'm not expecting a whole lot this year, either. It will take a year, and patience. If we could demolish MSU and play OSU tight I would be delighted. I have recently revised my ridiculous expectations upward, buoyed by Hoke's recruiting; but that affects us down the line. Seven-eight wins?

In The Shadow …

May 14th, 2011 at 11:46 AM ^

ESPN is totally biased towards superstars and "Hot" teams and conferences.  You don't have to look any further than their golf coverage.  Tiger Woods is the lead story every week.  It doesn't matter if he is 10 or more shots off the lead or if he dropped out of the tournament or if he didn't even play.  They do a great injustice to the guys that are in the lead or that actually win by starting off with Tiger. 


May 14th, 2011 at 11:55 AM ^

Michigan has too many question marks to be anyone's realistic Big Ten favorite this year. The defense will surely be improved, but by how much? The offense could very well be taking a step backward, but by how much? Will the Wolverines find a kicker? Those questions could have positive outcomes, but an outside observer wouldn't predict that.

As for the other categories, Michigan isn't on anyone's "disappoint" list, because the Wolverines have already had four such seasons in a row. It's hard for a perennially disappointing team to disappoint people any more. But due to Michigan's tradition, it's hard for Michigan to surprise anyone either.

As for "can't miss" games, they did list Michigan-Ohio as one of the choices, but for anyone but a Michigan fan, that is frankly a lazy option. I mean, The Game is always exciting on some level, but there is no reason sitting here today to think it will be more so than usual (much as we all might hope so). It's understandable that three of the five choices involve Nebraska, as they're the most intriguing wild card of the conference season.


May 14th, 2011 at 1:20 PM ^

I dont get how denard gets on the front page for the article, and we only get mentioned once, for whose coach is on the hot seat.  Although, i always love seeing Shoelace on ESPN.


May 14th, 2011 at 2:15 PM ^

If this is indeed a snub, I can understand why.

We were 7-6 overall and had a 3-5 record in our conference (and 1-7 the year before, 2-6 before that).  We simply haven't been a Big Ten power for years.
Hoke, while we're learning to quickly love him, wasn't as sexy of a hire as Harbaugh or Miles would have been.  Rich Rod was a "bigger" hire, as it were.
ESPN and the national media expects our offense to decline, Denard to be contained, and our defense to remain terrible.

I believe that Hoke is taking us in the right places, but I don't even want to predict how successful we'll be in the short-run.


May 14th, 2011 at 2:18 PM ^

How did no respect and low expectations work for the basketball team? Hope the football team can learn from them and tear it up (well the 2nd half of the bball season)


May 14th, 2011 at 4:12 PM ^

They dismantled what was going to be a world-class offense and the defense will be better.   That works out to about eight wins.  Eight win teams usually aren't Big Ten Champions.

If Borges proves to be an offensive genius, this team could win eleven games because of an easy schedule.  More likely, though, he and Hoke will sacrifice this year's window of opportunity, preferring to install his system, and the schedule looks a lot tougher.  Consequently, we are probably looking at 2013 as the next possible great year.


Bobby Boucher

May 14th, 2011 at 6:09 PM ^

It's a well known fact that ESPN is anti-Michigan.  It's not surprising at all that we are not contenders for anything in their view.  Also, from their biased opinions, Coach Hoke could win 11 games this season and still be on the hot seat the next season because of some random ESPN BS expectation not fulfilled.  

That's just my opinion! 

maize and brew…

May 14th, 2011 at 8:31 PM ^

that U of M is not contender this year. Recruiting has been great for the 2012 season but the first year in transition is gonna be a hard one since its much harder to convert the spread offense to the tradional offense. Then you have the worst defense in the nation which can only get better. So to be realistic being a big ten contender sounds about what we should expect.

[email protected]

May 14th, 2011 at 8:52 PM ^

Not worried about ESPN's rating.  Middle of the pack or better is fine for the first year with Coach Hoke.  It is a rebuilding first year.  The defense has a long way to go, given recent history.  I am not worried about the offense, but they will need to adjust to the new style.  Now if we can just rely on kicker to score the occasional field goal.  That would be a good change.

That would taste great, and be less filled with ambivalence.