My 2010 UM Prediction UPDATED

Submitted by RationalMSUfan on May 3rd, 2010 at 3:19 PM

Ok. I don't think I will make many friends with the post, but it's a boring time of year and at least it could be fun.

I should start out by saying that my first prediction is that Rich Rod will be fired after this year and Captain Comeback Jim Harbaugh will come in on a white horse and attempt to lead the largest comeback of his career.  The underlying rationale for my season prediction is your defense. I expect that regardless of the QB, UM will score some points and have an above average offense in the Big Ten. However, I am not buying that a defense that has been flat out awful in RRod's first two years will somehow get betting losing Brandon Graham and D. Warren.  I am not buying the Will Campbell Kool-Aid.  I think Mike Martin is your only "proven" plus player on defense.  I think and Craig Roh are proven "serviceable" Big Ten players. I don't mean servicable in a bad way, I mean in it a "you can count on them way".  I see Floyd, Ezeh, as Kovacs "minus" players and the rest as ?????.

This is not meant to be a flame either, just a sobering perspective from an outsider not looking at things thru maize and blue glasses.  If I turn out to be wrong, I will come back and face the music.

Without further ado,

Uconn - Loss - (0-1) I'm sure when this game was put on the schedule, it was supposed to be a nice appetizer for a traditionally powerful UM as a tuneup for the Notre Dame game.  Instead, this game is a legitimate toss up. I don't know the early line, but I suspect it will be within a FG either way.  UConn returns a ton of starters from a team that beat USC (not that USC) in their bowl game last year.  UConn is not flashy, but they have a solid team and a solid coach.  I expect talk radio to be going crazy following this one.

@ Notre Dame - Loss - (0-2) I know Michigan won this game last year, but I thought Notre Dame actually was the better team that day (I realize I may be in the minority with that opinion).  I also think that Brian Kelly is a damn fine coach.  Notre Dame will be breaking in a new QB, but they still have Michael Floyd and Kyle Rudolph to ease the transition. Had anyone heard of Tony Pike before Brian Kelly?  Kelly also won the Big East with 3 different starting QB's three years ago.  He will have his offense ready and the game is in South Bend. I expect a similar shootout, will the home team pulling it out again.

Umass - Win -(1-2).

Bowling Green - Win - (2-2). 

@ Indiana - Win - (3-2, 1-0) So, the rabid dogs are still rabid, but have been pacified by blowout wins over inferior opponents.  Now hope is renewed with the Big Ten opener. I DO NOT think this game will be easy, as UM cannot just rubber stamp any big ten road game having lost @ Illinois last year.  Also, Indiana put up a fight in the Big House last year.  With that said, I expect Michigan to have too much offense for Indy to hang with and Michigan to pull away late and win by 7-14 points.

MSU - Loss - (3-3, 1-1) Like the Angel of the Big House, I too believe that this will be the biggest game of the Rich Rod era to date.  Under my scenerio, the natives will be restless having lost to Uconn and Notre Dame.  However, a win against MSU and Rich Rod would be 2-0 in the Big Ten and the momentum meter would be pointing in the right direction.  Alternatively, a 3rd straight loss to f'ing MSU and Rich Rod may be facing an in-season dismissal. I know some do not consider MSU a rival, but I think that position is ridiculous. I understand and acknowledge that we may not be your 1st or 2nd rival, but I just don't believe any UM fan that claims he/she would not be stinging from a 3rd straight loss to MSU more so than say Illinois, Wiscy, Iowa or Minny.

Back to the game.....I think we are a better football team than UM.  Sorry for that opinion.  I'm sure UM fans look at last year's game and say we needed OT to win at home.  I tend to look at the first 3.5 quarters of the game and see total domination.  I'm not saying my opinion is correct, but I guess we will find out in October.  I think our offense, while not the spread, will be dynamic this year. We have multiply playmakers at WR, a strong stable of TE's and I'm expecting an improvement from our true freshman RB's.  OL is the only concern on offense.  I acknowlege it is a large concern.  Any any event, I predict an MSU win and this loss will probably be the one that signifies the end of the Rich Rod era

Iowa - Loss (3-4, 1-2) - Iowa is a team that seems to play better on the road.  Their defense will be nasty and I think Clayborn is one of the top 2 defensive players in the Big Ten. For the record, I don't think Greg Jones is No. 1. That award goes to Clayborn/Heyward IMO.  Anyways, I think Iowa is good. They don't seem to blow anybody out, but I think they will win.

@ PSU - Loss - (3-5, 1-3) - I always take the position that good defense beats good offense.  I think PSU will struggle to break in a new QB, but playing at Happy Valley,  I think Newsome (or whoever wins the job) just needs to be ok to win.  PSU dismantled UM last year (us too) and this year the game is at home.

Illinois - Win - (4-5, 2-3) - I think this is the year you slay the Illinois dragon. I think they will absolutely blow this year. No Benn, Zook can't coach, game in Ann Arbor.  UM gets an easy win here.

@ Purdue - Loss - (4-6, 2-4) - I know I am not making any friends and I do think Danny Hope is a prick, but playing @ Purdue was never easy even for the good Michigan teams. I see 3 straight losses to Purdue in Rich Rod's future. Another reason for his dismissal.

Wiscy - Win - (5-6, 3-4) - Playing to save Rich's job, I think you guys pull this one out.  But too little too late.

@ OSU - Win - (5-7, 3-5) - Beat OSU maybe keep your job is the rallying cry for this one, but it aint happening. OSU's defense is great and Pryor is getting better.  This day will sting, but at least it will bring an end to the RRod era and healing/re-birth can begin.


[mod edit: he would like to add the following. he made it a separate post but no need]



I see I ruffled some feathers.  Not my intent.  I do find it funny that predicting 5-7 is somehow crazy and automatic troll.

For the record, I had a typo.  Martin was my plus player. RVB and Roh were my solid players.

Also, just because a guy is a starter does not make them a "plus" player IMO.

We've had plenty of 2-3 year starters that were not plus players.


I've read enough about Ezeh to conclude he is not a plus player, no matter how  many years he started.


Also, seasons RARELY go by the chalk.  So yes, losing to purdue but beating Wiscy dosn't make sense on paper, but isn't that what happened in 2008?


Like I said, I will be back when the dust settles.  If you guys go 8-4, I'll come back and say I was wrong.  So nobody on this board thinks 5-7 is possible? Wow.


Take care,

Still RationalMSUfan



May 3rd, 2010 at 3:36 PM ^

Michigan to continue it's unheard of generosity in the turnover and penalties department against MSU for a third straight year? 

Alas the chances that MSU faces a true freshman Michigan signal-caller for a third straight season is pretty much zero. 

I would agree though that the first two contests on Michigan's schedule will probably have the Wolverines better prepared than anyone else in the league.   




May 3rd, 2010 at 3:39 PM ^

Long and overused topic is long and overused.

In all seriousness, though.  I expect us to be better down the stretch as we're not playing a ridiculous number of freshmen who aren't used to a collegiate level of football.  I wouldn't go too far as declaring an OSU win at OSU, but stranger things have happened.  I expect this team to give us an incredible sense of hope we rally behind (see:  4-0 start last year), falter a little bit in the middle (maybe a 3-loss streak, including a game we should have won, which will cause massive panic in the MGoCommunity), but have a resurgent end to the season.  8-4 with a bowl victory is a successful year in my books.  

Is it September yet?


May 3rd, 2010 at 3:41 PM ^

I told you so.  This guy is no more rational than the rest of them.  I called it after this guy's second thread and a bunch of you got your panties in a bunch.

Sparty gonna Sparty.


May 3rd, 2010 at 3:47 PM ^

Sorry, but this is more rational then "10-2 with a win @ Ohio State" that's been thrown around. Honestly, we drank the kool-aid last year and we're drinking it again this year. Unless we readjust our expectations for improvement, we'll just be pissed off again.

My opinion:

UConn - tossup

ND - tossup

UMass - win

BGSU - win

Indiana - win

MSU - tossup

Iowa - loss

Penn State - tossup

Illinois - win

Purdue - win

Wisconsin - loss

Ohio State - loss

There are 5 wins, 4 tossups, and 3 losses. Hoping for a split in the tossups, that would put us at 7-5, and with a little luck we're at 8-4. Not speculating on RR's job security, but that probably won't appease the mlive-ers and TomHagans of the world.


May 3rd, 2010 at 5:59 PM ^

If I felt any bit more hopeful about the defense, I'd shout you down. But the spring game did nothing to settle my stomach.

So while I'd like the sunny maize scenario, I'll have to manage myself down to "rational" expectations like you've laid out until we see the defense on the field. (This is the lesson learned from three seasons of optimistic beginings gone all wrong ... somehow I'll forget the lesson again in September.)

I think the odds are that Rich may more likely be around in Spetember 2011 because or new AD has a head on his shoulders and balls to back it up, than surprising success in 2010.

I really would liek to be wrong.


May 3rd, 2010 at 8:23 PM ^

If I felt any bit more hopeful about the defense, I'd shout you down. But the spring game did nothing to settle my stomach.

Hey, if I felt more hopeful about the defense I definitely wouldn't be saying this. A good defense under Carr would put us in a January bowl game with this offense. This isn't to say that the defense's general suckyness is Rodriguez's fault, it's really nobody's fault, but yeaqh a competent defense and we'd be in Florida in January.

I also think Rodriguez will see year four. The AD went all in for Rodriguez so to speak when they hired him, and Brandon supports him now.


May 3rd, 2010 at 3:57 PM ^

I would definitely say that Wisconsin is more of a tossup than Penn St is, mainly because it's at home and Penn St was the only team last yr to blow us out at home.  Also how is Iowa not also a tossup game after we almost beat them last year(far closer than us beating Penn St). So that's 5 wins 5 tossups, and 2 losses(switching PSU and Wisconsin) so the 10-2 prediction is entirely optimistic but within the realm of rationality. To be clear I think we'll split the tossups 3-2 and go 8-4.


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:06 PM ^

As for Iowa, I'm not sure. We were lucky to still be in that game, and they should be improved after having won a BCS game. We do have a chance obviously, we should be competitive in every game, but Iowa's experience and defensive talent should win out. They do have Jewel Hampton back from his knee injury, we'll see how he does but he was the presumptive favorite before the aPAKIlypse.


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:23 PM ^

Michigan was the team that had 4 turnovers and (re)lost it's best offensive lineman on the first series. Given how close that game was, I'd say Iowa benefited from fortune much more than Michigan did.

That had a great defense and Michigan clocked them on the road, at night, with Freshmen QBs, and a juggled OL. Also they lost a really good LB,, as well as a solid to good DB, Spivey.

Oh yeah, and Ricky Stanzi is a liability. And they lost Bulaga. And Moeki.

So, Iowa still might be solid but I think they have some non-trivial questions to answer.


May 3rd, 2010 at 5:39 PM ^

They spotted us a seven point lead too. I think it will be close, but after seeing them finish out the year I don't know if we'll win. We did have the best offensive performance against them so I might be wrong. Maybe they can't handle Denard.


May 3rd, 2010 at 6:24 PM ^

Not trying to be contrarian but, Stanzi, your boy (kidding), threw that ball right to a 5-star defensive back. Regardless your point is well taken. 

Iowa got away with a bunch of shenanigans last year: Sparty gave it away, the Indiana game was ridiculous, we've been over Michigan, and they needed magic against Northern Iowa. Georgia Tech has a one dimensional offense that they had 1 month to prepare for.

Sparty won got away with similar shenanigans in 2008 and came right back down to earth in 2009.

I know it's not really fair to do this. They won all of those games and I give them their due for that, but no more. I'm skeptical that they are really that good especially given all the holes they need to fill.


May 3rd, 2010 at 8:40 PM ^


 Love it or leave it.

Yeah, personally I think Jake VandenBerg is better than my boy Stanzi, but he's proud to be an American so I can't bring myself to root against him. Plus I'm not Kirk Ferentz (even though it may seem like it), so my opinion means nothing.

You're right about Iowa's close games, part of that is due to their skill, but eventually there will be a regression to the mean and they will drop some of those close games. Hopefully one will be against Michigan.

I still think Iowa will win, but you've persuaded me to change my highly thought-out and scientific model for picking games, so Iowa has moved from a "win" to a "tossup"

That's five wins, five tossups, and two losses for you folks keeping score at home, but I think we win two of the five tossups to go 7-5. Inexperience is not an asset in close games.


May 3rd, 2010 at 8:44 PM ^

I agree. Wisconsin is better than Penn State in my opinion. Penn State has a good defense, despite losing their three best defensive players (Bowman, Odrick, and Lee). Their offense could be Sheridanesque with Newsome and McGloin back there.


May 3rd, 2010 at 3:49 PM ^

I think that unless Dantonio reinstates Oren Wilson, that for the first time in a couple of years, Michigan's OL will whip the D-front of MSU.

Michigan hasnt blocked Wilson or Anderson in two years and neither of them will be playing.

I like State. I like State's team. Better than most people here. I love Keishawn Martin's game, as an example. And Cousins could be the best QB in the league, who knows?

But, Michigan's OL is finally equipped. At home. Double revenge. Sorry dude....if you want to make money that day, you best go to the window and ask for a Michigan ticket.

Free advice and No Sugarcoat.


May 3rd, 2010 at 3:53 PM ^

"Uconn - Loss - (0-1) I'm sure when this game was put on the schedule, it was supposed to be a nice appetizer for a traditionally powerful UM as a tuneup for the Notre Dame game. "


Then you obviously don't know when this game was scheduled, lol.


May 3rd, 2010 at 3:53 PM ^

5-7...oh the irony...that'd be a solid season for State!

Terrible math skills ("win" against OSU = 1 additional loss)...more irony.


May 3rd, 2010 at 3:57 PM ^

I think you are going to be extremely surprised at the improvement of this team. We were very close to 9-3 last year. ( we could have lost to ND and Indiana, but Iowa, MSU, Purdue and even Illinois could have easily gone the other way)

Its simple. We get rid of the massive bad luck and turnovers. We also don't lose anything significant on the offense, and we lost three good players but return 8 starters and better backups than the last three years on defense. We have a returning defensive coordinator for the first time in four years. The home schedule makes wins against Iowa, MSU and Ilinois wins simply by being at home when we were close last year. (Illinios was closer than the final score) How could you think Kelly is going to have ND playing well two games in? He lost a lot from last year.

We have a qb who has actually played in a college game who will either be a 12 game starter from last year who will be healthy now, or the guy who beats him out who has some experience and is one of the fastest players in all of college football.

Our defense was horrible the last two years, but just having a better offense will make the defense better by not putting them in terrible positions all the time.

Now, if you had said our kicking game will cost us a game or two, you might have been right about something.

I do worry about the UConn game, but its still a game Michigan should be favored to win.  And I think we will lose to OSU, but other than that, there isn't a team on this schedule that has a huge advantage over us. We'll lose one or two we could win, but in the end, we'll be 9-3. Hope one of those loses isn't to MSU.


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:56 PM ^

This is dead on.  So many of our losses last year were due to WTF decisions by young players.  Yeah, our defense sucked, but our turnovers sucked more, and we would've been able to pull out at least 2 more wins without them.

As for people who say that we're counting Iowa and Michigan State as possible wins that we need to count ND and Indiana--that's just wrong.  We lost Iowa and Michigan State because of our young, inexperienced team.  It's not like we won ND and Indiana because of experience.  In other words, we lost a few games because of inexperience, but also won a few game in spite of that inexperience.



May 3rd, 2010 at 3:58 PM ^

Back to the game.....I think we are a better football team than UM. Sorry for that opinion. I'm sure UM fans look at last year's game and say we needed OT to win at home. I tend to look at the first 3.5 quarters of the game and see total domination.
Whatever, MSU always plays "3 and change quarters of great football" As "dominant" as MSU played, Michigan was just a play or two away from:


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:06 PM ^

I'm sure UM fans look at last year's game and say we needed OT to win at home.  I tend to look at the first 3.5 quarters of the game and see total domination.

My question is, why would you only focus on those 3.5 quarters, and not the .5 that Michigan hammered MSU?

And you're wrong. We don't look at that game and say MSU needed OT to win at home. We look at that game and say MSU needed OT to win at home against a poor defense and a true freshman QB who was playing in his FIRST EVER road game in the rain and in front of a hostile crowd. And yes, even with that, you still needed OT (and a freshman mistake) to win at home. 




May 3rd, 2010 at 5:18 PM ^

first full game with Mooseman at Center (he had two horrible snaps that killed drives) and the first game after Tate's shoulder injury as well.

I am, generally, a pessimistic guy re: UofM football, but we WILL beat Sparty this year. Book it.


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:13 PM ^

History shows that MSU will win the game over Michigan...(sarcasm). A team thats going to take a step back because of the OL and had to go to overtime to win at home will not be given a W against an improved O and D on the road. Never


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:13 PM ^

Listen MSU guy, some of us are still pretty frusturated about the past couple seasons.  Honestly, I dont want to hear your negative garbage.  If thats how you feel then wait till the fall and see what happens.  Or at the very least post a picture of hot MSU girls next to your negative nonsense, so I dont feel so bad that I clicked on it.


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:16 PM ^

For starters:

* "Under my scenerio, the natives will be restless having lost to Uconn and Notre Dame."  Poor sentence structure *and* bad spelling...

* "Alternatively, a 3rd straight loss to f'ing MSU and Rich Rod may be facing an in-season dismissal."  You should have used alternately there.  Also, you assured that no one would take you seriously after that point.

I'll stop there.


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:20 PM ^

kind of  like that quote from super bad, "...the girls will be twice as dumb, and therefore twice as likely to fellate me." haha


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:27 PM ^

So we have a decent shot at being 6-0. We should win against UConn and ND, although I could see us losing one. And we can beat MSU at home. That'd make us 6-0 going into the Iowa game, which is at home.


May 3rd, 2010 at 4:51 PM ^

That also makes it quite clear that he's dumb. And the error makes be think, for no good reason, that he's from Opposite Land, in which case, he's predicting us to go 7-5 with wins over ND and Sparty. But, then he has a losing to BGSU and UMass so .. yeah, he's still an idiot.