The "Yankee" effect in the BCS selection

Submitted by MGoCooper on December 4th, 2011 at 2:27 PM

What we've heard from a lot of teams complaining about the coming BCS selections, is how unfair the process is. Mostly by our "friends" in east Lansing, claiming that by a result of their victory over us earlier this season, that by default, they should be ranked ahead of us. While we could spend the better part of this month debating that, most Spartan fans, and other shunned teams are forgetting what the BCS is about. It's about money, and it's about tv exposure. Growing up a redsox fan, my hatred for the Yankees would cause me to watch them, hoping and praying they would lose. That symbol, their pin stripes, yankee stadium, I hated it all. Michigan, to a lot of football fans around the country, presents the same thing. They hate "hail to the victors", they hate our winged helmets, they hate Tom Brady, and they hate the Big House. They will most definitely watch, if only to see us get our ass kicked. The Michigan brand, like the Yankee brand, is a world wide brand. 

That's what a lot of fans don't understand, that the business aspect of these selection, after the title game, and conference champions are selected, money is all that matters. Not only do we travel well, the merchandising opportunities with the Michigan brand, are far better than the other options. To quote our esteemed leader, and reigning B1G coach of the year, Brady Hoke "This is Michigan" after all. 


Edit: Parts of this have been posted by other OP's, but they play an essential part iin explaining the "Yankee" comparison. This is also not to say, that we aren't worthy of going to the game on record alone, because we absolutely are. A large part of the process, is how you're playing right now, how you finish.




December 4th, 2011 at 2:35 PM ^

Michigan and MSU are fairly even, would it surprise anyone if Michigan won a rematch at home?

MSU is 2-3 against teams getting votes (Notre Dame is #26).

Michigan is 2-1.


MSU was thumped twice - losing games by 3 or more scores.  Michigan wasn't.


December 4th, 2011 at 2:34 PM ^

Instead of basing it on all this, how about the fact that we actually deserve to go? We were in every game that we lost. Im not naive, I know that other stuff comes in to the picture, but we are a good team that deserves to go to the BCS. Sparty had their chance and they lost. They want their win against us to count for so much, yet can't accept us going to the BCS. The fact that they brought it up after losing shows what kind of team they are.


December 4th, 2011 at 2:42 PM ^

That said, which group of people seem more likely to have an actual effect in driving football away from the BCS and towards a playoff?

Disgruntled Big XII fans (Alabama vs LSU) or disgruntled SEC fans (OkState vs LSU)?

... which is why the BCS will do whatever's needed to get Bama in. And why we who support a playoff should want OkState in (though we are sure to be disappointed).


December 4th, 2011 at 3:54 PM ^

BEAT WISKEY...PRETTY SIMPLE..they controlled their fate and they are still MOO U... As much as I hated the Iowa 'call' I didn't use it as an excuse...we didn't finish the job early...if the same thing happened at the end of the Nebraska game does it really matter when you are up three scores? NO...

Likewise if they are really that upset about the whole about next season they come into the BIGHOUSE and just lay down on the turf in hopes that they get a better bowl than's about that?

I guess in the grand scheme of things when you are  UM alum you establish a job that pays well...and affords travel to a bowl game...when you leave Moo U with an agricultural get government to be you.


December 4th, 2011 at 2:57 PM ^

I know, I know, its an oxymoron. but anyway, if going by sparty logic of...we beat Michigan so we should be ahead of them, despite having a worst record. then shouldn't ND and Nebraska be ranked above MSU?


December 4th, 2011 at 2:58 PM ^

I think you can't under-estimate the effect of home field advantage in college football.  This is why I'm much more inclined to give #2 to Ok St, as opposed to Bama...they lost on the road!  


Aside from quality of victory, it's really hard to win away from home.  It's the same reason why I think Michigan and MSU are basically even teams, and their records reflect that.  If that game had been in Ann Arbor, I think we see a different result.  If we play ND in South Bend, I think we probably lose.


In other news, Rob Gronkowski is a MAN.


December 4th, 2011 at 3:03 PM ^

There's a similar dynamic in Oklahoma, where I live, (and several other states) between OU and OSU.  The difference, this year, is that OU lost 3 games to OSU's 1, and OSU won by more than 4 touchdowns over OU and dominated them in every phase of the game.  Still, year in and year out, OU gets greater attention and exposure.  OSU had to play two Thursday night games to get on television, and their victories on the field this year aren't going to magically change that.  Nationally, OU still is far better known in football, and will continue for the forseeable future.

OSU is where MSU wants to be (in football), and where some delusional fans think they are: (potentially) playing for a national championship (and having a billionaire booster).  But when OU and OSU are close, OU will be picked every time over OSU. 

There are several teams in college football that get this NY Yankees-type treatment.  Michigan happens to be one of the handful.  But it's not just luck, it was built through many decades of having a top notch program, one that others envy, and perhaps most importantly in today's world, one that people will tune in to watch play, over and above almost any other team. And, yes, those television sets turned on (and tickets sold) mean more dollars, and yes, dollars do matter.


December 4th, 2011 at 3:05 PM ^

They should have forfeited their place in the B!G Championship Game.  That's the risk you take when playing for an outright shot at the conference championship.  Big risk/reward scenario that they lost.  I'm sure this won't be the first time it'll happen in the conference'll probably be fairly typical.  Just so happens they started it off.


December 4th, 2011 at 3:09 PM ^

Honestly, they are a 3 loss team.  That makes them undeserving already.

They wanted to go to the BCS.  Win the championship game against Wisky.  Instead you lost.  Could have controlled their own destiny, but instead is more concerned like always what we're doing at Michigan.

Va Tech, Georgia, and Oklahoma all could have gone to the BCS with wins. All of those teams are more deserving than Sparty. Yet, no one is clamoring for them to get a BCS bid.


December 4th, 2011 at 3:11 PM ^

I hate the "business side" argument.  it is true but it's not a great point when arguing whether we deserve it or not because it just comes off as pompous. 

to me the most important things are 1) if you can benefit from winning a title game you can also be hurt by it.  if sparty was ranked 3 in the country and beat wisconsin you bet your ass they'd be arguing to be in the national title game because of their victory but they don't feel they should be punished for losing it.

2)  if you're no in the top 14 it doesn't matter so shut up.

3) Michigan often gets the benefit of the doubt with rankings and bowls because Michigan has been the winningest team in college football since the start. That's a perk for winning tons of games.   Michigan historically has been a much better team than State but they want to be viewed as equals.  If they maintain their success for 20 years or so then that may change but you're not entitled to anything for finishing 2nd in the Big 10.  If you do finish 2nd in the Big 10 you have to live with the fact that it's bowls and voters discretion on where you go- just like we had to deal with in 06. 


December 4th, 2011 at 3:34 PM ^

Michigan, to a lot of football fans around the country, presents the same thing. They hate "hail to the victors", they hate our winged helmets, they hate Tom Brady, and they hate the Big House.

This is definitely true in the Big Ten region, but I don't know about outside it. In other parts of the country, I've found that people seem generally neutral or even slightly favorable to us. They seem to like us more than OSU or ND.


December 4th, 2011 at 3:59 PM ^

yeah pretty true....I personally hate the Yankee culture... but I agree with the comparrison. Both are a substantial brand built through success, tradition, and national draw. In fact at one point the Yankees, the Cowboys, and the Univeristy of Michigan ranked 1-3 in total assets...we were ahead of most professional sports programs with a net worth of more than 250 milliion dollars in annual revenue. Pretty sure those numbers are quite different now but money talks and it's the way of the world...


December 4th, 2011 at 3:59 PM ^

The reason why I will tune in to a Texas/LSU/USC game is not because I have hatred towards any of those institutions, but because I feel that they are stalwart and reliable programs with lots of playmakers that will produce good games.

Similarly, Michigan is a brand name and people will watch in large part because of our history and because they expect us to produce a good football game. I was interviewing for jobs in early October and nearly every interview ended with "by the way, I saw that Under The Lights game on ABC, you guys play some very exciting football."

We aren't the Yankees, we're more like the Phoenix Suns. People watch because they expect to be entertained.


December 4th, 2011 at 4:24 PM ^

Historically, yes, but in talking to non-Michigan fans about the current team the general perception is that it's the Denard Robinson show with some defense to boot now. No one is expecting us to win a championship or dominate top teams like OSU just did to OU, but they do expect lots of points and excitement.

Given a little more sustained success our reputation may edge back to "Celtics/Lakers" territory, but for now, we're that team that scores lots of points and isn't totally consistent but is fun as hell to watch.

Under The Lights and the OSU games, our most watched of the year, were way more Phoenix Suns (circa 2007, I should say) than Boston Celtics.


December 4th, 2011 at 5:32 PM ^

I thought you were going to talk about the petty Yankee reporters who wouldn't give Pedro the MVP in 1999. That's what I would've talked about as a potential Yankee effect for Michigan not getting into the BCS because of people in Lansing. 


December 4th, 2011 at 6:15 PM ^

Red Sox fans always want to play the victim, but at the end of the day, they're still one of the top 3 teams that the media loves to cover.  Look at the Orioles, Jays, and Rays, those are the teams that should complain about the Yankees popularity, not Red Sox fans.  


December 4th, 2011 at 6:55 PM ^

If both teams were 10-2, Michigan would still be the one invited to a BCS bowl game (just like in 1999).  Sparty losing to Wisconsin just ended their one and only chance to make a BCS bowl.  It didn't allow us to get in.  MSU would have gotten rewarded for winning, but they are in the exact same spot they would have been in if they hadn't played.  They didn't get punished for losing.