Mixed Feelings About Alabama in 2012

Submitted by Webber's Pimp on September 24th, 2010 at 8:56 AM

On the one hand I love the fact that we're going out of conference to take on one of the nation's very best. However, I think we've stacked the deck against  us in the sense that we have to go on the road too many times in 2012 to take on top caliber opposition. Consider we have to travel to Dallas (Alabama), South Bend (ND), Lincoln (Nebraska), and Columbus all in the same season. As far as I'm concerned that has to be the toughest schedule in America for the 2012 football season... 

Comments

MGlobules

September 24th, 2010 at 9:00 AM ^

by new sanctions, Saban's firing, and general ennui, going into Dallas and kicking their behinds will be a great pleasure. And look at it this way--this gives us two years to develop on defense.

Wolverine0056

September 24th, 2010 at 9:01 AM ^

Yeah but by that time we will be dominating everyone with our offense and our defense will be pretty good again. The secondary has the potential to be great by then and I'm sure we will find some LBs to be pretty good by then too. I'm not worried about something 2 years from now, just about the rest of this year.

indyeagle

September 24th, 2010 at 9:03 AM ^

Let me make it clear that I don't think this is more challenging.  In my opinion it's comparable, especially considering where the games are played:

ND 2012 Schedule

Michigan at home

Miami (FL) in Chicago

Oklahoma in Norman

USC in LA

Navy in Ireland

Tim

September 24th, 2010 at 9:08 AM ^

As you implied, Ireland and Chicago will be de facto home games for ND. 

Playing Michigan and USC home/away is something that ND is definitely used to by now. They play one or the other on the road every season.

Oklahoma in Norman is really the only road/neutral game that is a "worry," from the standpoint of comparison. I think what's far more interesting is that they'll also play Baylor at Jerryworld.

indyeagle

September 24th, 2010 at 10:38 AM ^

It's definitely fair to assert playing Baylor in Dallas belongs on list of interesting games, but it's still Baylor (very meh).

On the other hand, I don't think it's fair to call the Navy game a de facto home game.  It's not as worrisome as playing OU away since both teams will be feeling like road teams, but it can't be easy playing abroad regardless if it's in the motherland (ask the Wings how that went last season.)  

rayfrom19

September 24th, 2010 at 9:12 AM ^

This game is great for Alabama because Saban continues to leverage his Michigan ties to his advantage in recruiting.  Lets not forget that Ingram is from MI and Alabama is on to a number of top MI recruits (I think Cooper).

Michiganguy19

September 24th, 2010 at 9:19 AM ^

Never ceases to amaze me, we DONT schedule any big school for the rededication this year and everyone is upset.

Then thankful this year that its "just UCONN" - And now we do what has been asked for, by the fans and this blog... and everyone has mixed emotions/trepidation?

We can't just be all talk and I agree with posts above, if we WIN it will be muppets.

Bosch

September 24th, 2010 at 10:08 AM ^

to find contradictory opinions on a blog that has 1,000's of vistors?  I am amazed at your amazement.

I can assure you that the people that are complaining about the schedule being too difficult are not the same people that wanted Michigan to play bigger name opponents.

And FTR, the main complaint about UConn wasn't that it wasn't a big enough opponent for the rededication.  The complaint was that they were a dangerous opponent with little national relevence.  It turned out alright in the end, but if the goal for the rededication game was to have a BCS level opponent, teams like Virginia, Baylor, or Washington State would have sat better with those who complained.  Neither of those programs were expected to be fighting for championships this year, yet they are schools that people recognize, if not respect, as a BCS level program.

MichiganNomad

September 24th, 2010 at 9:25 AM ^

Assuming that these guys maintain health, don't leave early or transfer, our 2012 squad looks pretty stacked with juniors and seniors who'll be in their third year of the offense/defense. 

Denard (SR), Omameh (SR), Mealer (SR), Roh (SR), Campbell (SR), Kovacs (SR), Cox (SR), Roundtree (SR), JT Floyd (SR), Terrence Robinson, Je'Ron Stokes(SR), Vincent Smith (SR), Lewan (JR), Carvin Johnson (JR), Marvin Robinson (JR), Gardner (JR), Jabreel Black (JR). 

I'm sure there are plenty of guys I'm missing but...

As far as Alabama goes, they way they recruit they'll always be stacked but I'm pretty sure they will have lost McElroy by then, will no longer have Ingram, Julio Jones, and I'm just guessing but I think Richardson will jump early after his junior year if he stays in Beast Mode. 

Maybe I'm just being optimistic, but the 2012 Michigan Squad could be special. 

Bill in Birmingham

September 24th, 2010 at 10:53 AM ^

Alabama's last two recruiting classes are loaded. They will be fine. An interesting angle to me (apart from playing a current and traditional national power) will be two obvious favorites for the 2012 Heisman (senior Denard Robinson and senior Trent Richardson) playing each other in an early season game on a neutral site. And if we get our defense together, probably two Top Five teams playing each other.

willywill9

September 24th, 2010 at 9:27 AM ^

I think it's exciting and I love what Dave Brandon has done.  Truthfully, I love that a big team is scheduled, I just wish it were a 1 and 1, not a neutral site thing.  Seems too gimmicky.  That being said, beggars can't be choosers.

One other thought, I would imagine ND would be dropped from 2012 schedule.  If they're not, that's fine; however this just goes to show that the Big Ten Schedule should have us traveling to Nebraska during years we have Ohio State at home, and vice versa.

harmon98

September 24th, 2010 at 9:31 AM ^

I'm excited.  Love the matchup.  Would much rather have a home-and-home but Jerryworld will do.  Among other things I'm excited to see all of those Bama fans drive their houses to Arlington. 

BlockM

September 24th, 2010 at 9:36 AM ^

If we have the best team in the nation, we should be able to prove it against anyone, anywhere, any time.

Let's not forget, this also helps the recruiting pitch as well. Where else in the country do you get the chance to play teams like OSU, ND, Alabama, Nebraska, etc. year in and year out. I understand Alabama won't be on the schedule every year, but I do like the way Brandon is trending on this.

Blazefire

September 24th, 2010 at 9:40 AM ^

If we have the best team in the nation, we should be able to prove it against anyone, anywhere, any time.

Exactly. If we're going to be a national power in perpetuity, we have to play like one. And with respect to ND fans, because I think Kelly will turn it around, ND ain't cutting it at the moment.

profitgoblue

September 24th, 2010 at 10:45 AM ^

I agree with the idea that Michigan should not fear playing Alabama.  However, you also have to remember that many of the national "powers" play cupcake non-conference schedules.  To compete with the top teams in the nation you have to have somewhat similar strength of schedules or your starting behind the 8-ball before the season ever starts.  That said, I'm sure most fans and the players will be extremely excited to watch and play in this game.  No doubt.

Dan TrueBlue

September 24th, 2010 at 9:42 AM ^

We're only facing three of the top 5 conference powers that year: we don't have to play Penn State or Wisconsin, and we get MSU and Iowa at home.  I think Nebraska's trial-by-fire introduction to the Big Ten, where they play all 5 of OSU, PSU, Mich, Iowa, Wisconsin,  is just as challenging.

My worry is whether we'll be ready to play at that level by then.  Don't get me wrong, I have every confidence RRod has us on the road up, and that we'll be a lot more competetive in 2012 when we have a defense we can rely on.  But if we come into that season with high hopes, and lose early to Alabama, that's a tough way to start a comeback tour.

I know, you can't be the best without beating the best.  I guess I'd just be a lot more comfortable if the game was at a neutral site up north (never happening) and mid-season, after we've had a chance to warm up and prove ourselves a few times.

octal9

September 24th, 2010 at 9:39 AM ^

We schedule UMass, DSU or some other Baby Seal U, Directional Michigan, Notre Dame - and people complain that our schedule is too easy.

We get a division with Nebraska, Iowa, MSU (which, lol), a cross-divisional game with OSU, Notre Dame (which, what?) then a game against Alabama and people complain our schedule is too hard.

Webber's Pimp

September 24th, 2010 at 9:58 AM ^

Don't get me wrong...I say we take on all comers. Bring 'em on...But given RRod's struggles I wonder if this is a little too much to have on his plate at this time...I expect great things as early as this year though. And by 2012 our recruiting numbers should level out (ie. more bodies on scholarship and on the defensive side of the ball)...

Adrian

September 24th, 2010 at 10:52 AM ^

 

Date Opponent
Sept. 3 WESTERN MICHIGAN
Sept. 10 NOTRE DAME
Sept. 17 EASTERN MICHIGAN
Sept. 24 SAN DIEGO STATE
Oct. 1 MINNESOTA*
Oct. 8 at Northwestern*
Oct. 15 at Michigan State*
Oct. 22 Bye Week
Oct. 29 PURDUE* (HC)
Nov. 5 at Iowa*
Nov. 12 at Illinois*
Nov. 19 NEBRASKA*
Nov. 26 OHIO STATE*

if we start off ranked this schedule looks really solid for a great year

bronxblue

September 24th, 2010 at 11:02 AM ^

Should be a fun game, and it is nice to seeUM play a major non-ND, not Pac-10 team outside of a bowl game.  Sure, it makes the schedule tougher, but by 2012 the team should be pretty competitive against anybody or will be going through another transition, at which point they might as well play a good Alabama team and maybe pull off the upset.

Tater

September 24th, 2010 at 11:16 AM ^

The schedule is tough enough now with the addition of Nebraska to the conference, not to mention the playoff game.  I still think one fairly tough noncon game with three cupcakes is more than enough. 

The way it sits now, Michigan could be the best team in the country in 2012 but not make the NC game because of their schedule.  The only way it makes sense to schedule tough noncon opponents is if there is a playoff that incorporates conference champions.  Until then, bring on the cupcakes.  It keeps injuries down and gets depth players playing time.

Young Pretty a…

September 24th, 2010 at 11:39 AM ^

I like the team's chances with a 2012 Denard Robinson.  The improvement from his Freshman to Sophmore year have been night and day.  And by than the defense will have the experience and depth that you would expect from a Michigan defense.

moredamnsound

September 24th, 2010 at 12:03 PM ^

First time I saw this I thought "Wow they must have some confidence in the 2012 team." But even if that's not the case, I'm looking forward to it. Hopefully at that time we'll be a great team again and put up a good fight.

strafe

September 24th, 2010 at 12:49 PM ^

Jesus, I don't see how any self respecting Michigan fan can bitch about playing teams that are "too hard." Are you here to see a beautiful game played or pleasure yourself over rankings and stats?

Ideal 2012 schedule: Bama, Texas, Boise (our cupcake), Florida, then a conference schedule with no Indiana or NW yessssssssss.

I'd rather watch us lose to Bama then sit through another Eastern Michigan or 1-AA game ever again.

TheOracle6

September 24th, 2010 at 1:24 PM ^

Historically we do very well against the SEC so I do like our chances.  As far as the OP is concerned about having a 6 home and 6 road game schedule: Deal with it!!! If we get through the bulk of that schedule with a great record it's only going to help our BCS standing and strength of schedule in case we're knocking on the door for a national championship.  Michigan isn't afraid to play anyone, anywhere.  GO BLUE.

Zone Left

September 24th, 2010 at 1:38 PM ^

The only thing that really matters for the BCS is winning, regardless of the opponent.  10 wins, and Michigan is in the BCS.  If they win 12, with or without Alabama, they'll be in the title game.

On a selfish note, I'm hoping to be in my second year of grad school in 2012 and would be really sad if I only got six home games.

SFBayAreaBlue

September 24th, 2010 at 4:22 PM ^

heading into the 1997 undefeated season, no one gave us a chance because we had one of the toughest schedules, having to play all the big guns in the big ten plus colorado notre dame, and baylor which was at least a step above a mac team.