OT - B1G Presidential Jinx

Submitted by Butterfield on April 16th, 2012 at 5:44 PM

Interesting little "fun" column over at CNN talking about the fact that no elected presidents have attended a B1G University - obviously Gerald Ford was president but never elected. 

The column and its relationship to politics is only tangential - its purely a fun attempt to figure out why none of the 12 B1G University's have given us a POTUS and doesn't discuss political viewpoints of any kind.  As such, hopefully the mods can keep this one up because its a short and interesting read.  And hopefully you all can behave and keep the discussion free from any sort of Beltway rabble rabble. 


P.S.  I know I'm forever biased and probably wouldn't recognize anything he said as intelligent, but Gordon Gee comes off, once again, like a total buffoon. 



April 16th, 2012 at 5:53 PM ^

Has every other major conference had a president? ACC, SEC, Big12, Big East, and Pac12? I suppose maybe I should be flattered that they think highly enough of our conference academically to single us out, but I didn't really get why. Has a B1G presidential candidate lost in each of the last 5 presidential races or something?


April 16th, 2012 at 7:29 PM ^

I think you nailed it when you said you should be flattered.  The B1G is a group of prestigious institutions unlike anything in the country, sans the Ivy League, of course.  Nobody is shocked we haven't had a President elected from South Carolina or Arizona State, but from Michigan or Northwestern - that is a bit of a shocker. 

A bit more info  on colleges attended by the POTUS, by conference....you'd think by sheer luck we'd have at least one!

5- Ivy League: Columbia (T. Roosevelt, FDR, Obama), Harvard (Adams, JQ Adams,Hayes, T. Roosevelt, FDR, JFK, GW Bush, Obama), Pennsylvania (WH Harrison), Princeton (Madison, Wilson), Yale (Taft, GHW Bush, Clinton, GW Bush) 

4 - Atlantic Coast:  Duke (Nixon), Georgia Tech (Carter), UNC (Polk), Virginia (Wilson)

3- North Coast Athletic Conference (DIII):  Allegheny College (McKinley), Hiram (Garfield), Kenyon (Hayes) 

2- Big East:  Cincinnati (Taft), Georgetown (Clinton)

2- Centennial Conference (DIII):  Dickinson (Buchanan), Johns Hopkins (Wilson)

2- Colonial:  Davidson (Wilson), William & Mary (Jefferson, Monroe, Tyler)

2- Eastern College Athletic Conference (DIII):  Amherst (Coolidge), Union (Arthur)

2- New England Small College Athletic Conference (DIII): Bowdoin (Pierce), Williams (Garfield) 

2- Patriot LeagueUS Military Academy (Grant, Eisenhower), US Naval Academy (Carter) 

2- Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (DIII):  Occidental (Obama), Whittier (Nixon) 

1- MAC:  Miami of Ohio (B. Harrison) 

1- Northwest Conference (DIII):  George Fox (Hoover)

1- Ohio Athletic Conference (DIII):  Ohio Central (Harding)

1- Old Dominion Athletic Conference (DIII):  Hampden-Sydney (WH Harrison)

1- Pac 12:  Stanford (Hoover)

1- Peach Belt Conference (DII):  Georgia Southwestern State (Carter)

1- Southland:  Southwest Texas State Teacher's College - now Texas State (LBJ)

1- St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (DIII):  Eureka (Reagan)

Smash Lampjaw

April 17th, 2012 at 1:31 PM ^

Is proud not only of B. Harrison, but also that President Washington signed the act of Congress that established it just eight years before Michigan was founded in the wilderness. BTY, I propose the use of (YTM) and (NTM) to eliminate annoying redundancies like the RenCen Center and the HIV virus.

M Fanfare

April 16th, 2012 at 6:23 PM ^

Of the 34 Presidents who graduated from college, only 7 got their undergraduate degrees from FBS schools. The list:

Michigan - Gerald Ford (obvs.)

West Point - Ulysses Grant, Dwight Eisenhower

US Naval Academy - Jimmy Carter

North Carolina - James K. Polk

Stanford - Herbert Hoover

Miami (OH) - Benjamin Harrison

If you count all BCS conference schools regardless of sport, Georgetown alum Bill Clinton also goes on the list.




M Fanfare

April 16th, 2012 at 6:59 PM ^

Note I said "undergraduate degree." Nixon graduated from Whittier College before going to Duke Law and Taft graduated from Yale before going to law school at the University of Cincinnati. And I didn't miss Carter, he's right there in the middle after US Naval Academy.


April 16th, 2012 at 6:44 PM ^

Less than 20 have served in the 20th and 21st century, which is when college really becomes  something that leads to rising in society and becomes something people outside of the elite strived for. The fact that we have one is pretty amazing.



Cheesecake Wizard

April 16th, 2012 at 6:46 PM ^

I think this could be partially because of the general big 10 attitude, as opposed to the Ivy League (especially Harvard). Generally, I feel that the general big 10 attitude towards life is that hard work, living a balanced life, and family are important.  Obviously there are vairations, but most of the people i meet here at Michigan are not the type of people who would run for president.  Maybe congress or other public office.  It's not that we won't go on to do great things, but being POTUS requires reduculous sacrafices, and I believe that we are conditioned to not make those sacrafices.


April 16th, 2012 at 9:37 PM ^

Democrats republicans and independents unite! G ford will not be disrespected like this on our watch. Ok, so he wasn't elected, but the man had swag! Anyone remember that Simpsons episode? Come on people.

snarling wolverine

April 17th, 2012 at 3:29 PM ^

What is the point of the "elected" caveat?  Gerald Ford was a U-M grad and became President.  The House of Representatives confirmed him as Vice President and then he succeeded as President, through constitutional means.  It's not like he staged a coup d'etat.