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Posted on Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 5:58 a.m.

UConn controls site of 2013 football game against Michigan, Pac-12 opponent could be announced soon

By Nick Baumgardner

The Michigan football team still intends to play a previously contracted true road game at Connecticut in 2013.

In front of a whopping 40,000 people.

Michigan athletic director Dave Brandon told reporters Monday that the school has every intention of playing the Huskies at Rentschler Field, which has a capacity of roughly 40,000.

"We have a contract with UConn to go to their campus and play that game," Brandon said. "That contract is one we're absolutely going to honor as we do all our contracts.

"That's all I can tell you about it right now."


Michigan linebacker Obi Ezeh hauls down UConn running back Robbie Frey in Michigan's 30-10 win in September 2010. file photo

At the moment, Michigan is set to travel to Hartford, Conn., to play the Huskies on Sept. 21, 2013 as part of a home-and-home contract that originated with Michigan hosting UConn at Michigan Stadium for its 2010 season opener.

That game, a 30-10 Michigan win, brought in 113,090 fans -- nearly three times the capacity of Rentschler Field.

"Certainly there are ways to make that game bigger, in terms of venue, and we'll have conversations in that regard," Brandon acknowledged." But right now, UConn's in control of that decision."

Michigan's other non-conference games in 2013 are home dates with Central Michigan (Aug. 31), Notre Dame (Sept. 7) and Akron (Sept. 14).

Also on Monday, Brandon said he expects Michigan to secure a non-league game against a Pac-12 opponent soon.

In accordance with the new Big Ten-Pac-12 scheduling alliance, all football members must begin scheduling non-conference games with a Pac-12 school prior to 2017.

In December, Brandon told he felt Michigan could secure an arrangement with a Pac-12 school prior to 2017, and he reaffirmed that stance Monday -- explaining that he believes the school could have something to announce on that front "soon."

Who, exactly?

"Nice try," he replied.

Michigan currently has two open weeks on its 2014 schedule. The Wolverines' present non-league games in 2014 are vs. Appalachian State and at Notre Dame.

As far as the 2012 campaign goes, Brandon said he's very satisfied with how the lineup shakes out -- despite the fact that the Wolverines will play one of the more difficult non-conference slates in the country, with a neutral site game against defending national champion Alabama and a road game at Notre Dame highlighting the bill.

"Our schedule this year is one that will test our team every week," he said. "That's a challenge and there are some programs that don't want to be tested every week. But that's not Michigan. It's not me, it's not our coaches and I don't think it's our kids either. I think they're looking forward to the challenge of playing Alabama.

"I feel good about it, and as we look at scheduling going forward, we're looking to match up against teams that are going to challenge us and keep us playing at our best."

Nick Baumgardner covers Michigan sports for He can be reached at 734-623-2514, by email at and followed on Twitter @nickbaumgardner.


Dan Allen

Wed, Apr 25, 2012 : 4:21 p.m.

To increase seating to 2x the current amount, UConn doesn't need to move the venue. They simply need to go to Ann Arbor with a ruler, measure the seat size inside the stadium, then use those measurements to purchase new seats for UConn's stadium (if they can even find a supplier).

Captain Dave

Wed, Apr 25, 2012 : 9:17 p.m.

Love the sarcastic comment. The seating in Michigan stadium is the tightest I've ever seen anywhere.

Con Undrum

Wed, Apr 25, 2012 : 6:09 a.m.

Don't be so down on playing at UConn. Look at what RGIII said. Jon Robinson:What was the toughest place for you to play while at Baylor? Robert Griffin III: The thing that people think is when you go to these big stadiums and they have 80,000 people or 100,000 people, that these are the toughest stadiums to play at, but really, those aren't.The toughest places to play are the ones that are jam-packed, are really tight to the field, and sit about 45,000 people. When we played at UConn my freshman year, that was the loudest place I've ever been as a football player. The stands are right next to the field, it was packed, and everyone was yelling. That was probably the coolest place for me to play at aside from Texas, Texas A&M, and Nebraska.


Wed, Apr 25, 2012 : 1:06 a.m.

Season ticket holders will sure get their money's worth! I wonder how much interest there will be for a non conference home schedule like that with IN, MN and Purdue possibly thrown in for conference home games.

Mush Room

Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 5:30 p.m.

Oh my! Oh my! The dreaded Appalachian State again in 2014. Oh my! Oh my!


Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 4:36 p.m.

I was at the Michigan UCONN game (drove from CT with friends). Great atmosphere up there in Ann Arbor. UCONN did have a chance that game. Turn that fumble at the goal line into a touchdown and momentum goes to UCONN. But it was a fumble and Michigan won. I'm glad to see your fans agreeing to sticking with the deal. It may not mean much for you but for us here in CT it is going to be one of, if not the highlight game of the season. Gives us a chance to grow and who knows, 10 years from now we might be talking expanding our stadium. And just a little something on our place, It sits on what was once an airfield. Some of the best tailgating around. Good luck this season and please overlook us in 2013, I want some payback...


Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 4:26 p.m.

Akron, Central, and UConn as three of our four non-con games in 2013? This is one of the primary reasons I detest the BCS.


Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 4:09 p.m.

All of you complaining should read this:

Craig Lounsbury

Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 3:55 p.m.

Another thought on the U Conn would Brandon feel if Syracuse or Kentucky signed a home and home for basketball then squeezed on us to move the game to the Palace or Ford Field?

Scott Laux

Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 3:30 p.m.

Can't imagine why we'd sign a one and one with Uconn. They have zero chance to win. Why not just play another MAC or MACc like team at home.

Blue Marker

Wed, Apr 25, 2012 : 2:32 p.m.

@redceder1 Or like losing to CMU at home......twice.


Wed, Apr 25, 2012 : 7:10 a.m.

Do you mean a team like Ohio? Or Toledo?

Craig Lounsbury

Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 3:49 p.m.

That zero chance to win thing makes me nervous. The last game I actually went to was App State and that is what I thought then. :(

Craig Lounsbury

Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 11:56 a.m.

If one wants to maximize home games one should sign teams that want the paycheck, not a return visit. To sign a home and home with U Conn was arguably a financial blunder. But since "we" signed it, not only should "we" honor the commitment, "we" should go to their "house" instead of trying to get them to move the game to a bigger "house". If you don't like how small their stadium is, DON'T SIGN UP FOR THE HOME AND HOME.

Craig Lounsbury

Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 5:41 p.m.

I agree that paycheck games are often boring. The whole thing is problematic to the extent that the football team is the cash cow at Michigan and a handful of other schools. To the extent the football team is profitable (which it isn't everywhere) and funds or helps fund other sports its hard to sign away home games. Any good team will want a home and home.


Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 4:46 p.m.

The problem with that is some of those "check paying" games are boring. I went to the UCONN game and they looked to us like we looked to the ND game. That was huge on their part and their fans were classy and traveled very well. Even if the Michigan game were to stuff their stadium, I think UCONN deserves the chance to have UM come there. I know places like UCONN and CMU don't have showcase places, it would be one hell of a party. It might not have the same flare as moving the game to a nearby NFL stadium. Keep it in the college town.

Blue Marker

Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 4:05 p.m.

Not only was it Bill Martin but before he announced who the team was he teased "Michigan has scheduled a home-and-home with a BCS conference school." Like they signed up to face a SEC or Big 12 team.


Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 3:13 p.m.

True! I believe Bill Martin was responsible for this silly home & home with UConn.


Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 10:23 a.m.

I absolutely love it! In order to be the best u have to beat the best. On order to beat the best u have to play the best. Bring on the SEC, the Pac 12, and every other conference! GO BLUE!!!


Tue, Apr 24, 2012 : 11:18 a.m.

You are absolutely right DB. I look at these schedules with Akron, Central Michigan, App State and just cringe. Even UConn is a stretch--they play in a weak conference and have not exactly been a national power except for maybe one or two years. This year, the schedule has the fans' attention, the players' attention, the media, etc and it shapes up for some meaningful competition. Even MSU is upping its schedule making in coming years. They even have Boise State home and home.