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11/15/2018 - 9:22am Michigan State is down at 15…

Michigan State is down at 15, and apparently Nick Ward's ankles haven't healed from what Mo did to him last year.

11/15/2018 - 9:20am I would think that a #7 team…

I would think that a #7 team going on the road at #10 would be an underdog, or at best a pick 'em.  Road wins at top 10 teams are never "meh" no matter what your ranking is.

11/15/2018 - 9:14am I agree with that, and it's…

I agree with that, and it's especially annoying that many of those road losses were to Duke, and particularly gratifying that the two previous wins were both against Duke.  I only made the distinction to have a reason to include the fact that the last time (and, it turns out, the only time) before 1996 was 1964, just to show how rare it really was.  

11/15/2018 - 9:03am There is a (not particularly…

There is a (not particularly obvious) link in the OP to all of the game schedules (and lots of other info) from the mgoblue.com website.  If you scroll down enough there are game scores for each season in Michigan history, including Michigan's rank, opponent's rank, and game location.  

11/15/2018 - 9:00am Good question, and…

Good question, and unfortunately I can't edit the OP to put this in there.

Last night's win broke a streak of (I think) 13 consecutive road losses to top 10 nonconference opponents.  

The 1996 win also broke a streak of 13 consecutive road losses to top 10 nonconference opponents.  We didn't play very many such games in the late 70s and early 80s for some reason.

Anyway, our record in those games is now up to 3-26 in the last 55 years.

While looking, I dug a little deeper: The AP basketball poll didn't start until 1948, and wasn't done continuously until the 1950-51 season.  So in the entire AP poll history, we are now 3-27 in road games against top 10 nonconference opponents.  Note: I am counting in that total "road" losses to UNLV in a "neutral site" game in Las Vegas, along with a "neutral site" loss to UCLA in L.A.  

 

11/14/2018 - 8:35pm In fairness to Fox, aren't…

In fairness to Fox, aren't all whores commercial?

11/14/2018 - 8:33pm Villanova currently has 20…

Villanova currently has 20 turnovers and 11 made baskets.  That must be some kind of basketball rutger.

11/14/2018 - 8:29pm I think the answer is 1996. …

I think the answer is 1996.  Football was 9th in the November 4 poll, and basketball was in the top 10 for the first half of the season.  

11/14/2018 - 8:20pm No, you were right.  That is…

No, you were right.  That is, in fact, what Villanova is saying right now.

11/14/2018 - 8:12pm I think we finished them a…

I think we finished them a while ago.

11/14/2018 - 8:03pm I think I'm going to like…

I think I'm going to like Iggy.

11/14/2018 - 3:18pm Agreed, especially since…

Agreed, especially since Bredeson never redshirted. Even going pro next year puts him as a younger NFL entrant than most linemen.

11/14/2018 - 2:03pm If we went to an 8-game…

If we went to an 8-game schedule, B1G teams would all play at least 2 P5 teams.  The SEC had to institute a rule to make each team play 1 P5 team.   The entire SEC plays 8 conference games, 1 P5 team (many of which suck), and 3 cupcakes. They effectively play the same schedule difficulty that Washington State plays, yet Wazzu gets roasted for it and no one says shit about the entire SEC doing it.  

11/13/2018 - 8:28pm Comparing 2018 Michigan to…

Comparing 2018 Michigan to 2015 MSU is an embarassment. 

In 2015, half of MSU's wins were by 7 points or less, including their win over Rutgers and the dropped punt snap game.  They had a horseshoe up their ass all season, and it finally fell out against Alabama.  They gave up over 20 points 9 times in 14 games, and in their loss during the regular season they gave up 12 points to a 5-7 Nebraska team in the last 2 minutes to lose.

2018 Michigan has scored fewer than 38 points only 3 times in 10 games, and has given up 20 or more points only 3 times, with the largest being the 24 scored by Notre Dame.  Only one win (Northwestern) has been by fewer than 14 points.  Michigan has dominated its schedule starting in the second half of Week 1.  

11/13/2018 - 8:02pm That Florida ranking is…

That Florida ranking is horrendous.  Their last three games are: lost to Georgia by 19, lost to Missouri by 21 (!) and needed a big comeback to squeeze by a mediocre South Carolina team at home.  Their nonconference schedule is a joke, and their three losses are all by double digits.  How are they 13th?  20th seems closer.  Who would you take on a neutral field: Florida or Utah State?  I don't know, but I bet that would be a tight game.  

It's hard to move OSU up given the loss to Purdue, and what Purdue did against Minnesota.  MSU is basically broken at this point, and gave OSU 9 points.  I can't argue for moving either West Virginia or Wazzu below them, and LSU beat Georgia by 20, so I wouldn't drop them below OSU either.  OSU has one win over a ranked team and looked pretty weak against Minnesota and Nebraska to go along with the Purdue win.  I think LSU and West Virginia should be switched, and 10th is perfect for OSU.  

 

11/13/2018 - 7:41pm Kentucky is bad.  They are…

Kentucky is bad.  They are 48th in S&P+, above South Carolina and below Buffalo.  Their best nonconference opponent is Saturday against Middle Tennessee State, who is ranked 74th, 5 spots below Tennessee.  Considering that their last 5 games have included 3 losses (2 to currently unranked teams) and a reffing gift win over Missouri by 1, I wouldn't be surprised if they lose that game.  

Kentucky got absolutely pounded by Tennessee.  Tennessee has now beaten the following teams: 

East Tennessee State, UTEP, Charlotte, Auburn, Kentucky.  The non-conference wins are over an FCS team and two teams ranked lower than Rutgers in S&P+ (yes, there are teams ranked below Rutgers).

Tennessee losses: West Virginia by 26, Florida by 26, Georgia by 26 (impressive consistency here), Alabama by 37, and South Carolina by 3.  

Tennessee is absolute ass, and they beat Kentucky by three scores.  Kentucky is not worthy of a top 20 ranking.

(Note: that last paragraph may be relevant to discussions about Ohio State, but they have 1 loss, not 3, and Purdue is way better than Tennessee.  OSU at #10 is about right.)

11/06/2018 - 3:17pm I really like this idea. …

I really like this idea.  There needs to be more objectivity in ranking teams if those rankings are going to affect who is eligible to win the championship.  

One suggestion I would have (and I don't really know how to implement it) regards "winning P5 teams."  Many of the SEC teams play 3 cupcake-level nonconference opponents because they only play 8 conference games.  It's how they can wind up with 10 bowl-eligible teams, and nobody really notices because they have a few good conference games during the traditional nonconference season, then slip in a game against Lamar in November when no one is paying attention.

SEC teams have a built-in advantage in this metric, as their average team essentially starts with an extra half win by virtue of having one fewer game against other teams in their own conference.  Example: South Carolina will end up (likely) 7-5, with wins over Akron, Chattanooga, Coastal Carolina, Tennessee, Vandy, Missouri, and Ole Miss.  Their 5 losses will all be to ranked teams.  What happens if you replace, say, the Chattanooga win with a game against an SEC West team that they didn't play? Options: MS St, Auburn, LSU, Alabama, Arkansas.  Sure, if they're lucky they get to play Arkansas, but they are probably underdogs to each of the others.  

The SEC is, intentionally or not, gaming that metric, because it helps teams like South Carolina and either Vandy or Tennessee (and maybe Missouri) eventually get to or above .500 by virtue of an easy nonconference schedule.  Since teams like Kentucky and Florida play all of those teams, they are somewhat artifically getting 1-3 additional wins over "winning teams" that other P5 teams don't get.  

I'd like to see wins against losing G5 and FCS teams excised from the records completely, and then have the "winning teams" calculated based on the remaining games.  It's not like the cupcake games are anything other than glorified scrimmages anyway, so they shouldn't serve to boost the teams' resumes.  

11/05/2018 - 8:05pm The point of the diary is to…

The point of the diary is to show that voters, whether it is the traditional polls or the CFP committee, are valuing very highly the teams in the SEC despite the fact that their conference has very few wins of note outside the conference.  As a result, the preseason polls that valued teams like Miami very highly are still impacting polls now.  LSU received big bumps from early wins over Miami and Auburn, and are still ranked in the top 5 by some AP voters because of a perceived strength of schedule.  

The problem with going by W/L against other P5 conferences is that it ignores games against legitimately good G5 schools but counts Rutger like it's an actual college football team.  I wasn't really looking at the overall strength of each conference (the B1G as a whole is certainly pulled down significantly by the likes of Rutger and Illinois). I don't really care that Kansas beat Rutger because both teams suck anyway.  Similarly, I don't think that record against .500 or better P5 teams is a good measure because that metric is meaningless when you can go 6-6 and have 3 of those wins against teams like Tennessee Tech and Alabama State.   So I chose to look at which conferences had actually recorded wins against the top 25.  I thought about expanding it to teams that had received votes, but the results were about the same, in that the B1G has by far the most good wins.  

Overall, what this says to me is that the SEC is overvalued, as was the ACC in the first CFP rankings.  Mississippi St. is at 18 (AP) and 15 (Coaches) as a 6-3 SEC team, but they scored 7 or fewer in each of their three losses, and four of their 6 wins are against Stephen F. Austin, La. Tech, La.-Lafayette, and Kansas State.  Kentucky is at 12 after 4 straight games scoring 17 or fewer points and is coming off a pretty BS win at Mizzou (needed a questionable penalty to get an extra play) and got stomped by Georgia.  Also, teams like Sparty and Iowa should be higher. Hopefully they are both in the CFP top 25.  
 

11/05/2018 - 4:08pm So with the WVU-NC State…

So with the WVU-NC State game having been cancelled (I assumed it had and that WVU won), that's 5 top 25 wins for the B1G to 3 total for the rest of the power 5. 

11/05/2018 - 4:04pm Thanks, I just looked at the…

Thanks, I just looked at the preseason schedules and assumed. My kingdom for an edit function...

11/04/2018 - 4:38pm Scarlet Afternoons, actually.

Scarlet Afternoons, actually.

11/04/2018 - 10:55am Um, you may have missed the…

Um, you may have missed the sarcasm there.

11/03/2018 - 9:38pm It was probably the zone…

It was probably the zone read run on 1st down on the last drive.  When he handed off on the next play his right arm was hanging down and he looked hurt.  I wasn't surprised when Peters got rushed on for the 3rd down snap, but I didn't realize it was this bad.  

11/03/2018 - 8:03pm I think the officials ruled…

I think the officials ruled that the contact was to the shoulder/chest, not the head/neck area, and therefore targeting does not apply.  That said, that is the kind of play that shows why the rule needs to be amended, because that clearly was an intentional laying out of a defenseless player, but that doesn't get called, while accidental and unavoidable head contact does.  One would think that "targeting" implies clear intent, but that's not how the rule is written.

11/03/2018 - 6:05pm I don't understand what…

I don't understand how anyone leaves a game like this if they were going to go at all.

11/03/2018 - 5:56pm I regret that I have but one…

I regret that I have but one upvote to give to this comment.

11/03/2018 - 5:12pm LOL Nice timeout call there…

LOL Nice timeout call there Frames.

11/03/2018 - 4:25pm Set it to read new comments…

Set it to read new comments first and use the read more button instead of refreshing.

11/02/2018 - 9:50pm 23-12 Michigan.  Michigan…

23-12 Michigan.  Michigan relies heavily on the run and grinds Penn State down.

11/01/2018 - 1:09pm Defenestrative coordinator.

Edward Longshanks: Defenestrative coordinator.

10/30/2018 - 8:59pm I think the Warinner…

I think the Warinner turnaround has been equally impressive.  Keep in mind the 2011 defense couldn't stop Notre Dame at all in UTL I without Rees' help.  Did they even punt in that game?  And at the end of the year, a mediocre OSU team led by Adam Sandler and a freshman QB put up 34.  Also we didn't encounter any elite offenses in 2011, as the top two offenses we faced by S&P+ standards were #19 Western Michigan and #20 Notre Dame.  That OSU offense was #65.

Michigan went from 81st in 2010 to 23rd in 2011 in defensive S&P+, which is a great improvement, while Michigan has gone from 85th in 2017 to 29th in 2018 in offensive S&P+.  The 2017 line was 104th or worse in all three sack rate categories last year, including 117th in adjusted sack rate.  This year: 46th in adjusted sack rate, 43rd on passing downs.  Obviously Shea Patterson plays a role with his feet and by getting the ball out faster, but last year's line got two QBs seriously injured and lost its best player, and suddenly the line has gone from glaringly obvious weakness to seemingly solid.  This while playing a schedule that has included the #6 overall defense in Notre Dame (admittedly our worst performance) and the #14 offense in Sparty (400 yards of offense and only 2 sacks).  

As for individual improvement, look no further than the tackles.  Runyan went from backup guard/right tackle to an unspectacular but solid starting left tackle.  JBB was written off by many around here, then was a placeholder for a few weeks while Hudson got ready, and turned out to be a road-grading right tackle.  Missed assignments are infrequent, blocking schemes look coherent and effective, and even Stueber was able to step in as a backup and have a solid quarter against an elite run defense.  

I was hoping for the OL to improve from atrocious to mediocre in pass blocking, and to be good to great at run blocking.  I don't think we are quite "great" at run blocking, but the pass blocking has gone far beyond even where it was in week 1.  

10/30/2018 - 2:47pm A. OSU has one more four…

A. OSU has one more four-touchdown loss to a four loss team than we do.

B. Our position relative to future opponents is irrelevant.  What matters is our position relative to schools like Oklahoma, Wazzu, Georgia, and LSU.  

That said, OSU should be like 10th.  Their second best win is Minnesota.

10/30/2018 - 2:33pm While it's true that Alabama…

While it's true that Alabama's wins weren't great, who would you have put in their place?  Not two-loss OSU, that got crushed by both Oklahoma (at home) and Iowa.  Not 3-loss Auburn, that lost the SEC championship.  There just weren't any deserving conference champion candidates.  Not the 1-loss Wisconsin team that just lost in the B1G championship.  Alabama got in in 2017 for the same reason OSU got in in 2016: their better record and lack of bad losses outweighed another team's conference championship.

That wouldn't happen for a 12-1 Michigan team, with 3-4 wins over ranked teams and only one road loss to another CFP participant.  That resume is an order of magnitude better than any of last year's snubbed contenders.  

10/30/2018 - 2:08pm Yeah, but LSU housed Georgia…

Yeah, but LSU housed Georgia.  Our best win is over Sparty.  If LSU isn't #4, it's because they're #3.

10/30/2018 - 2:05pm Quality wins are not created…

Quality wins are not created equal.  I think the committee values Georgia's win over Florida far more than any of our wins.  Our best wins right now are Sparty and Northwestern, and Florida is far more highly regarded.  I think Michigan should still be ranked higher, but it could go either way tonight.  Of course, our positioning vs. Georgia would only matter if we win out and they beat Bama in the SEC championship, so it doesn't really matter right now.

10/30/2018 - 12:17pm Wazzu should be ahead of OSU…

Wazzu should be ahead of OSU.  Their loss was far less embarrassing (by 3 to USC), and they have wins over Utah, Oregon, and @Stanford.  By comparison, OSU was obliterated by 4-4 Purdue, and has the win by 1 at Penn State, and....what else?  TCU is now 3-5 and just lost to Kansas.  OSU's second best win right now is probably at home against Minnesota, and it's likely that Penn State is the only team they've beaten at this point that will make a bowl game.  Hell, Purdue might have to beat Wisconsin just to get to 6-6.  If the preseason rankings don't mean anything, I think Wazzu and maybe even UCF should be ahead of OSU.  

I also don't see why Oklahoma would be ahead of us.  They, like us, have not beaten a single currently ranked team, but their best win is @ Iowa State, which is 4-3, and second-best is the OT win against Army that was, at the time, embarrassing.  We have 2-3 wins that are at least as good as the Iowa State win, and our loss was on the road at a better team.

I think it should go:

1. Bama

2. Clemson

3. ND

4. LSU

5. Georgia

6. Michigan

7. Wazzu

8. Oklahoma

9. UCF

10. OSU

10/29/2018 - 11:09pm True, but Tennessee has been…

True, but Tennessee has been destroyed by every ranked team they have played, and has one win over a team with a pulse (and considering that's Auburn, "a pulse" may be generous).  Northwestern had a bad stretch early including the fluky loss to Akron that included 3 defensive TDs, but they crushed Wisconsin and had a solid road win over Michigan State.  That's two wins that are way better than anything that Tennessee has.  Also, Michigan statistically dominated Northwestern, and was by far the better team for the last 40 minutes.  

In terms of going on the road, Penn State's best road opponent to date might be Indiana, and they only won that by 5, so feel free to kill them for that.  And for other reasons.

10/29/2018 - 7:32pm You don't remember Grant…

You don't remember Grant Hill and Christian Laettner?

10/28/2018 - 2:28pm UCF got jumped by an OSU…

UCF got jumped by an OSU team that, in the last two weeks, got housed by Purdue and then had a bye week, and you're saying they get too much respect?  I'm not saying that they deserve to be higher, but it's pretty clear that voters have a hard ceiling when it comes to UCF because they haven't played anyone.  When LSU loses to Alabama I'll bet they stay ahead of UCF, and you'll see Wazzu jump them as well if they keep winning.

10/28/2018 - 2:25pm This was going to be a…

This was going to be a pretty interesting polling week, as 11 ranked teams lost, including 9 of the bottom 11.  That allowed Iowa to stay virtually in place.  Ohio State jumps over UCF despite neither team playing.  I was a little surprised that Georgia didn't jump over Michigan with a big win over a top ten team, but once you look at their overall resume, I think they got that, and a lot of this poll, right.

10/28/2018 - 11:28am I think it opens at Michigan…

I think it opens at Michigan -7.5.  I also think Michigan wins by 17.

10/27/2018 - 12:21pm That was actually a great no…

That was actually a great no-call on kick catch interference and the muff.  I was just waiting for the flag to fly in, but it looks like the returner got hit by his own guy and the punt hit his leg.  Good B1G officiating?

10/26/2018 - 5:47pm "That would have been an…

"That would have been an unmitigated disaster."

I thought that's what we had.

10/25/2018 - 6:03pm Pretty sure your "Mid 70's"…

Pretty sure your "Mid 70's" was one year.  Also, Steve Martin was never a cast member.  

10/21/2018 - 9:00pm Our playoff chances are…

Our playoff chances are simple: Win out and we're in.  Don't, and we're not.  

Also, I think it would be good for the conference to have Iowa win out in the regular season and make the conference championship.  That way the B1G championship is between top 10 teams, instead of the West sending in what looks like a sacrificial lamb that the East winner gets no credit for beating.  If Iowa goes 11-1 and Michigan knocks them off, we would have wins over 10-2 OSU, 11-2 Iowa, 9-3 Wisconsin (they would have to lose one more in this scenario, probably to PSU), and Penn State, all of whom would likely be in the top 20.  That could be enough to bump us ahead of an undefeated ND team, since they might only have one win over a ranked team, and that at home and at night.  It would be pretty controversial, but Florida State was ranked 3rd in 2014 as an undefeated team behind two 1-loss teams, so it's not unprecedented.  We don't get that kind of bump from beating Wisconsin again.

10/20/2018 - 11:35pm Their linebackers are as…

Their linebackers are as mediocre this year as they were last year when Iowa abused them all game, and Michigan did the same and would have won if O'Korn could throw a 5 yard pass.  This year, they also can't run the ball, and their secondary is just as mediocre as the linebackers.  

10/20/2018 - 11:24pm Unlike Ohio State, we have a…

Unlike Ohio State, we have a run game and a back seven.

10/20/2018 - 8:28pm The Daily should do a story…

The Daily should do a story on this.  Here's the headline:

When you're in East Lansing...

Winovich burns Couch

10/20/2018 - 7:14pm At this point they have work…

At this point they have work to do to make a bowl.  OSU crushes them as long as the weather isn't atrocious.  Maryland and Nebraska are losable road games, and I think Purdue will beat them.  They have to win one of those to get to a bowl game, and at this point I don't see how they score unless you give them the ball inside your own 10.

10/20/2018 - 7:10pm Yeah, sorry Murderwolf, "I…

Yeah, sorry Murderwolf, "I have always been here" should be gone, in favor of "Hold this L."