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Posted on Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 1:13 a.m.

Michigan football team on precipice of BCS eligibility, but still needs help

By Kyle Meinke

Click here for the complete BCS standings.

It didn't take long for the talk to shift to BCS scenarios after the Michigan football team's win against Ohio State last weekend.

The BCS, though, says not so fast.

Although the Wolverines are an attractive team for BCS venues — in fact, probably the most attractive of any non-SEC at-large contender — they are not yet eligible to receive a bid after dropping from 15th to 16th in the latest BCS standings that were released late Sunday.

Teams must be among the top 14 to qualify for a BCS at-large bid, which will be doled out after next week's conference championships. The final standings will be compiled Sunday and the bowl pairings are expected to be released at 8:15 p.m.


Michigan football fans could end up cheering for the Wolverines in a BCS bowl, but it's going to take a couple of losses by certain teams.

Melanie Maxwell |

Although not yet qualified, the Wolverines are in solid shape heading into the final weekend of the season after moving to 10-2 with a 40-34 win Saturday against the Buckeyes.

"I think this team is now very much in the national hunt, and we'll see how the BCS standings come out," athletic director Dave Brandon said Saturday.

Senior defensive lineman Mike Martin was a little more forthcoming, tweeting on Sunday afternoon "#BCS #BCS #BCS." Several players retweeted the refrain.

The Wolverines do not play next weekend, but several teams ranked ahead of them do.

In fact, two of the three teams directly in front of them in the standings — No. 15 Wisconsin (10-2) and No. 13 Michigan State (10-2) — play each other in next week's Big Ten championship game. The Wolverines are expected to pass the loser of that game.

That means Michigan needs one other team to lose in front of it, and it's in (provided it's not caught from behind by a team such as Baylor, which closes with Texas).

The best shot at that happening is No. 14 Georgia (10-2), which plays top-ranked LSU (12-0) in the SEC championship game. The Bulldogs will be a heavy underdog.

If they were to win, the SEC could nab three BCS spots, which would be terminal to the Wolverines' at-large aspirations.

No. 10 Oklahoma (9-2) also plays next weekend, taking on No. 3 Oklahoma State (10-1) in its season finale. A loss by either team could help Michigan, as the Sooners would have three losses, and the Cowboys would have concluded their season with back-to-back upsets.

Most favorable for Michigan, though, would be for Oklahoma to lose. A third loss would push the Sooners out of contention for BCS consideration.

Wolverines coach Brady Hoke said last week he thinks the Big Ten deserves a second BCS bid. On Saturday, he would not say the Wolverines should get that bid, even though they're the league's best-positioned team to receive it.

“I don’t have that decision," Hoke said. "I think we have a good football team. Somebody will make that decision.”

Michigan will not play for a Big Ten title, falling short of Hoke's goal for the season. The caveat, though, is it does not have to face Wisconsin in a 13th game, as Michigan State does, and the prospects of a third loss.

Either the Badgers or Spartans will have a third defeat, meaning the Wolverines are assured to jump the loser in the BCS hierarchy and receive the conference's second-best bowl bid.

The divisional split, then, has been kind to the Wolverines this year. Without it, they would be headed to the Outback Bowl, or perhaps the Capital One Bowl.

Now, their worst-case scenario is the Capital One Bowl, the Big Ten's second bowl tie-in.

Kyle Meinke covers Michigan football for He can be reached at 734-623-2588, by email at and followed on Twitter @kmeinke.


Macabre Sunset

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 7:38 p.m.

Recapping what we need the most... 1. Southern Mississippi upsets Houston in the Conference USA championship game. 2. Louisiana State beats Georgia in the SEC championship game. 3. Oklahoma State beats Oklahoma in the de-facto Big Twelve championship game. 4. Virginia Tech beats Clemson in the ACC championship game. 5. The BCS selection committee is tired of Boise State not bringing a lot of fans to major bowls. 6. Iowa State upsets Kansas State. If four of the above six happen, it looks good for Michigan.

Larry Weisenthal

Tue, Nov 29, 2011 : 4:56 p.m.

MSU beating WI also helps us.

Macabre Sunset

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 7:31 p.m.

I'd look at the scenario as follows. There are 10 slots in the BCS. Six go to the champions of the major conferences. That leaves four at-large slots. Two are absolutely set with Alabama and Stanford. In order to qualify for an at-large spot, Michigan must be ranked in the top 14 in the BCS. Michigan is 16th. So the first thing we need to root for is for Louisiana State to beat Georgia in the SEC title game. That would get Michigan to 14th, ahead of Georgia and the loser of the Big Ten title game. Houston would earn one of the two remaining slots, by rule, if it beats Southern Mississippi on Saturday. So that's the second thing we need to root for - an upset win by Southern Mississippi to open up an at-large spot. The third thing we need to root for is losses for teams ahead of Michigan that play this weekend. That includes: - Boise State, ranked 7th, against New Mexico (not going to happen). - Kansas State, ranked 11th, against Iowa State (not impossible, but this is a good Kansas State team). - Oklahoma, ranked 10th, at Oklahoma State (this should be a very good game). Those are our primary rivals for at-large berths. I would not worry about Baylor because it's a three-loss team and the voters are loath to jump lower-loss teams at this stage of the season, even with an impressive win against a struggling Texas. The fourth thing we need to root for is for high-ranked teams to win their conferences. That includes: - Virginia Tech, ranked 5th, against Clemson in the ACC title game. - Again, Oklahoma State, ranked 3rd, against Oklahoma in the de-facto Big Twelve title game. The reason here is that losses by these two favored teams puts them in the at-large hunt, likely slotted well ahead of Michigan. And, finally, we need the selection committee to ignore the rankings and give Michigan an invitation. Because we will almost certainly be ranked behind a couple of eligible teams. I'll recap in the next post...


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 10:39 p.m.

It's not this complex. About the only that would hurt Michigan is if LSU losses to Georgia. This would give Georgia a automatic qualifier spot. And mostly likely give the SEC 3 teams in the BCS. LSU would still play Alabama for the Title game since they would not drop much in the BCS. Fans want this rematch.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 6:37 p.m.

as of this morning I think ESPN,NBC,CBS,SI, and College Football News all have us "pegged" for the Sugar Bowl. All have us playing Huston except NBC has us playing W. Vir. We will know next week after all the championship games get ironed out. I'm pulling for UCLA to pull an upset against Oregon just to rattle the powers that be.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 6:15 p.m.

Look people, we need MSU to beat Wisconsin. Hate to say it but that helps us more. A loss on the road to the Big 10 champion actually makes our resume look better. We didn't play Wisconsin, so that question will linger. We NEED MSU to win, even if it hurts to say it. GO STATE!!!!!!!!! Go to Pasadena and get bombed by Oregon. As long as it gets us into a BCS game, I'll take it. GO BLUE!!!!!!!!


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 8:42 p.m.

I'll cheer for Wisconsin regardless of what the outcome means for Michigan. I think a Georgia loss with a Spartan loss will still get us in, but if not, watching the Spartans being denied will put a smile on my face, and we'll probably still make a better bowl than they will, even if it isn't a BCS one. 'Sconnie for the roses!


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 6:17 p.m.

either MSU wins or Wisconsin blows them out by 35, so they drop below us. I'll take either one.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:48 p.m.

I think Bigtenknight has it right. His follow up post has an important point. How can a team 2nd in its division and 3rd best in the conference be worthy of a "BCS bowl." The whole point behind the BCS was to get the rankings correct. To leap over teams regarded as better for the appeal of drawing more fans to a bowl game is not supposed to be a reason to get into a particular bowl game. To me, winning the Big Ten as the best and primary goal. Lacking the championship, I don't really care which bowl game Michigan ends up in other than I want to play a higher ranked team to see how good we really are. The bowl system always has brought criticism over which teams are best and it has not improved. Also IMHO the six week delay between the last game and the bowl games makes it hard for teams to be sharp, so you don't see the best play in bowl games. Frankly, I would love to play MSU again. Beating OSU would feel a lot better if we had beaten MSU.


Tue, Nov 29, 2011 : 5:11 p.m.

Mick, furthering your question, how can a team that didn't even win or even play for its own conference championship play for and win the national championship? That is likely with Alabama, and even for LSU, who will play for the national championship even if they lose to Georgia in ther own conference championship. There is little logic in the BCS system, but they make the rules.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 10:29 p.m.

No the whole point behind the BCS is to: 1. get a Title game #1 vs #2. 2. Making money for the Non Title BCS bowls (by providing the most attractive) Michigan drawls a Large TV audience.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:17 p.m.

I guess my mind is still focused on our magnificent win on Saturday--that was the team's goal all season long. I want to savor it a bit longer before contemplating the future.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:54 p.m.

Actually Michigan can still get to a BCS Bowl with out being in the BCS Top 14. The Loser of the Big Ten Championship would most likely drop out of the top 14. If the conference doesn't have a second time in the top 14. They are allowed to chose a conference team in 15-18.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 10:23 p.m.

@Mick52 - The reason the second place team will fall below lower finishing Michigan is becasue they will have 3 losses (1 more than Michigan). It doesn't need to make sense this is the BCS nothing make sense.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:50 p.m.

Why should the second place team in the Big Ten fall below lower finishing Big Ten teams? Makes no sense.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 3:51 p.m.

I did it I beat Ohio, I have to change my name to 58-44-6


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 3:40 p.m.

Three eternal things in the universe: death, taxes & the lack of logic in the BCS bowls. WILL Blue get a BCS bid? Yes. Something (B1G and/or SEC championships) will cause Michigan to regain a top 14 slot. SHOULD Blue get a BCS bid? Yeah... at least under the present system. The most important attribute "M" has is its fanbase. They travel well and have a lot of enthusiasm that has been bottled up over the last few years. Remember, THE MOST IMPORTANT factors in bowl games (outside the championship game) are selling seats and making money for the bowl sponsors. Whether you are the "best" team is really of little importance. The bowl selection system is hopelessly broke, we all know it. Technically, the loser of the Wisc/MSU is the 2nd place team in the BIG standings. However, they will have an 10-3 record with a winning percentage of 77%. Technically, Blue is 3rd in the B1G because your record is superior to Penn St (the 2nd place team in the Leader's Division). However, 10-2 gives you an 83% winning percentage. How do you fairly compare 12 and 13 game seasons? You can't. Nobody can. If Wisky beats MSU in the title game. MSU will likely fall behind Mich in the polls, DESPITE beating them on the field of play. Even a Michigan lawyer would have a hard time arguing the logic of that position. At some point the NCAA needs to take control of both the regular season and the post seasons. A shortened of March Madness (3-game playoff) is NOT THE ANSWER. The regular B-ball season has little meaning other than qualifying for the playoffs. FB is much more complex. We need to preserve a MEANINGFUL regular season. We enhance the regular season to make non-conference games against worthy opponents. We need to preserve the tradition and legacies of "Bowl Games." We need to feed the beast (making sure everyone [TV, schools, Bowls]) make LOTS of money. This is not impossible, just complex. The hardest part would be getting all the


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:53 p.m.

I thought the whole idea behind the BCS was making sure the rankings were reliable. That has always been an issue, making sure the rankings are accurate. Fan appeal should not penalize a highly ranked team from getting into a bowl. I know that is the case the fan response is a key issue, but I think it is not fair for that to be a factor in a "BCS Bowl."


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:51 p.m.

When the complaints about the current system outweigh the value of the money made by the current system, they'll think about changing. You say a 3-game playoff is not the answer. I think you're in the minority on this one. That is what everyone is calling for. What's odd is that some are saying LSU does not have to win the SEC championship game to be in the BCS because of their "body of work through the season." Well then ... if that's the case does it mean if LSU lost in the first round of a playoff it should be given another chance? This whole topic is full of no-win solutions. No matter what is chosen nobody will be happy. An 8 team playoff? Then the 9th team will complain about being excluded.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:44 p.m.

You are right on all this stuff. That's why I think playing a tough non B10 schedule is important, so that there is meaning to these rankings and won-loss records. When it gets only about money (which it basically is), it is a loss for sport and the spirit.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 3:25 p.m.

I think it is important to set the priority straight. As Bo repeatedly said, a season is a great success if we win against Ohio State and then MSU. A national recognition will follow. Playing for the championship is not that important to me. One more issue: I would like to see Brady Hoke start thinking about raising his successors teaching what he learned from Bo. We could forget about the three years of RR. The tradition continues after Carr retired. He failed in however raising his successor.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 2:52 p.m.

There's a matrix of potential outcomes here, as well as a scale of "goodness" to the Michigan cause: o Get into BCS and win -- very goodness! o Get into BCS and lose but play competitively -- general goodness o Get into BCS and get blown out -- not goodness, value of being in BCS eliminated by blow-out o Get into lower bowl and win -- general goodness o Get into lower bowl and lose bu play competitively -- neutral this year; future years no. o Get into lower bowl and get blown out -- *awful* ... validates perception of Big 10 as weak Here are the teams ahead of Michigan in the BCS standings, from #1 to #15. Michigan is #16 -- LSU, Alabama, Oklahoma State, Stanford, Virginia Tech, Houston, Boise State, Arkansas, Oregon, Oklahoma, Kansas State, South Carolina, Michigan State, Georgia, Wisconsin. Throw out the Big 10 teams ... no bowl is likely to schedule Big 10 vs. Big 10. Plus, such a game doesn't do much for the general cause of advancing Michigan on the national stage. There's no way I'd want Michigan to play LSU or Alabama ... just not ready for that. Michigan vs. Oklahoma State ... it might be a high-scoring affair, but I'd doubt the ability of Michigan's secondary to slow Wheeden. Michigan vs. Stanford would be a good game. A supreme test of Luck vs. our defense. Like vs. like in a lot of ways. If we lost but played tough and competitively this would be a good result. Virginia Tech ... I think we could match with them well. Might not win, but it would be competitive. Houston, Boise State ... not much upside; lots of downside. Arkansas ... I would hope we could stay competitive, but this would be tough. Oregon ... Theo's dream ... if Oregon won it would vindicate his "spread always" meme Oklahoma, Kansas State, South Carolina, Georgia -- I'd like to see any of these games with Michigan.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 2:46 p.m.

I'm not worried about which bowl we go to. I just want to win, and not be embarrassed like last year. So stop with the speculation. Whatever happens, happens.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:55 p.m.

Second that.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 2:44 p.m.

I will be happy where ever Michigan ends up. GO BLUE!!!


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 2:25 p.m.

Michigan wants a BCS game plain and simple!!! Getting to a major bowl game like the Sugar Bowl, would be an incredible achievement for Coach Hoke, who didn't even recruit a majority of these players. With the countries largest alumni, Michigan will sell it's share of tickets with or without the students. The the BCS game, being the only game played that night, recruiting benefits could be huge. This isn't about the students, who rarely filled their own seating section at Michigan Stadium, but The Team, The Team, The Team!

Blu n Tpa

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 12:46 p.m.

Guys, uhh, isn't Michigan playing Alabama next year in the first game, at a neutral site? Who scheduled that? Them plus ND, at SBend, is enough "challenge" for a non conference schedule for me, thank you very much. I remember some thinking DBrandon was crazy for putting that schedule together. Funny what a 10-2 season will do for you. TiM Go Blue! As far as which bowl Michigan goes to Orlando is a short drive and NawLenes is a plane ride, and hotel room. Sure the French Quarter is nice over New Years but prices are a bit steep that time of year. Whereever they play, my heart goes with them. Go Blue TiM


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:58 p.m.

The faux pas in re to the Alabama game is that it is not at the Big House or in Alabama's stadium with another game next year in the opposite stadium. To me, it's bring em on, anybody, anywhere, anytime. Michigan should never fear any schedule.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 1:40 p.m.

Let's not forget Nebraska and Ohio State on the road. The bar is set high next season. I'll be at Jerry World for the Michigan-Alabama game in September. I'm hoping to be there to witness Denard unleash his off-season-improved passing game in what would surely be an upset over Bama. Traditionalists may call this game gimmicky for being at a neutral site, but it will be the biggest non-con game for Michigan in the last 15 years, if not longer. The win over Ohio put Michigan officially back in the Big Ten, a win over the Tide would put the national spotlight back on the Maize and Blue. I cannot wait! Go Blue!


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 1:20 p.m.

They also play Air Force at home. They are not the best team but the option attack after 2 hard weeks of football is not the easiest to go up against!


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 11:53 a.m.

As of now, we are not a BCS team, but Hoke is on the right track and we will be in contention next year. I just feel we haven't beat a real contender yet in the Big Ten to claim with certainty.....we're back! There are 3 things that I am certain of right now and that's Hoke is the right hire, our defense is improved and we're developing diversity in our offense. (instead of the one man gang.) I almost tossed my lunch after watching OSU's QB throw those deep passes at the end of Saturdays game. So that got me thinking that maybe we're better, but a lot of (lucky) balls bounced our way this year. 8 home games didn't hurt either, but we're on our way up!

Blue Marker

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 10:55 p.m.

Mick52, What are Houston's signature wins???? I believe RudeJude sets the record straight above.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 6:01 p.m.

Ne is ranked 18 and lower. ND and OSU are unranked. So those three wins are not much to go on.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 2:43 p.m.

MassMittenz, I was a senior on Bo's first team at Michigan (1969). We had a Defensive coordinator named Jim Young. He taught us that a bad offense will stop itself 60% of the time. A good offense will stop itself 40% of the time. Penalties, turnovers, dropped passes, overthrown or bad passes, missed blocks, missed assignments all contribute to an offense stopping itself. If an offense plays mistake free, it will beat even the best defenses most of the time. So no matter how good our defense is, luck always has a hand in it.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 1:30 p.m.

Houston's big win: 38-34 over UCLA (6-6), who just lost 50-0 to USC. Houston also survived the "powerhouses" Lousiana Tech, 35-34 and UTEP, 49-42. I don't fault Houston for being a win away from busting the BCS, but it really shows the BCS is a sham from top to bottom. Michigan, Houston, or anyone else, deserves to be in the BCS if the BCS rankings say so, and it looks like a Georgia loss will put Michigan in the Top-14, but who knows...I'll wait until next weekend before I get too hopeful.

Blue Marker

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 12:37 p.m.

So Michigan isn't worthy even though they beat Notre Dame, Nebraska and Ohio State but Houston is? Sorry, Michigan has just as much right to be there as Kansas State or Houston.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 6:40 a.m.

Does Michigan really want to go to a BCS game? I understand you get the spotlight and all, but I think Michigan would suffer the same fate MSU did last year playing a top 10 team when they really are not quite at that level.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 6:08 p.m.

In regard to MSU: kudos to them, but I must point out they received a huge benefit of off field actions. Last year, MSU shared Big Ten championship with OSU but did not have to play OSU. This year they get an OSU team with four starters still on probation. The rest of the Big Ten teams that play OSU get them with suspensions over. Seems to me to be a huge gift, maybe those suspensions should have been four games to even the playing field. Thus I propose that MSU while deserving a nod of credit, got a big handout and is overrated perhaps.

Matt Patercsak

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:19 p.m.

MSU did not play a mere "top 10 team" they played the Alabama crimson tide that was hungry coming off a loss to Auburn. there was not a team in the country that would have beat the Tide that day. aside from the top 5, the rest of the schools look upsettable. houston especially


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 1:36 p.m.

Ok, I guess I'd be a little nervous against some of them...but go for it anyway!


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 1:30 p.m.

I think we could play to-to-toe with anyone in the top 13-5. You're afraid of the likes of Houston and Virginia Tech?


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 6:24 a.m.

It would be nice to see Michigan get the national recognition which comes with any BCS bowl appearance. Beyond that, I think it's important to recognize the the Best In The Big Ten this year won't be playing in either of the top two BSC bowls. That tells us all we need to know: Big Ten teams need to become better, not just Michigan. All the conferences are their own little worlds - and only the BCS system provides national legitimacy. This is why we don't want to see these collapses of programs like Michigan, Ohio and Penn State. It's wonderful that Michigan is still the "most-wins" team, it's wonderful that Ohio has been a national powerhouse in recent years, it's wonderful that Penn State had a 400-win coach whose every word impacted college football. But right now: none of that "exists" in terms of national success and stature. Michigan made a bad coaching choice, both Penn State and Ohio lost mainstream coaches to "ethical issues." "It can't happen here" is the deadliest delusion - that's the lesson Michigan must remember from this point on. Winning the Big Ten is not only worthy but a necessary goal: but winning the BCS is where it's at when it comes to making Michigan the actual Leaders and Best. If Dave Brandon and Brady Hoke think anything else: then Michigan will become a quaint side show from a bygone era, nothing more. Until Michigan and Ohio replace LSU and 'Bama on the national stage, we cannot sustain the image we've enjoyed for over 100 years.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 6:14 p.m.

Until you play them you don't know how good you are. We schedule patsies for four games and we don't even know how good we are until the Big Ten season is under way. At least next year we get Alabama up front. And yes I do count Notre Dame as a patsy. Their time is over, ended a long time ago. Unranked. Why a quality player would go to an independent is odd to me. You have one thing to play for, the National Championship. Lose two games, maybe only one, and it just is not going to happen. In a conference you have still have a league championship to shoot for.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:48 a.m.

I think it's funny Kyle Meinke, a Michigan football fan first and a sports reporter second, thinks it's a 'lock' that if MSU loses next week, Michigan is guaranteed to jump them in the rankings. One would especially think so since Michigan climbed...wait, no, they dropped one spot this week after WINNING their game. Things are never a lock; will it happen? Probably, with chips falling correctly. Either way, Michigan fans will be rooting for Michigan State, LSU, and Oklahoma State in hopes their team can back their way into a BCS bowl game.

Blue Marker

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 11:02 p.m.

Wally, I guess my point is even without things being even (open for debate) UM is a much more appealing bowl draw. I'll agree that MSU has had the better season including beating UM. However, with both teams sitting there with 10 wins the bowls will pick Michigan 10 out of 10 times.

Wally the Wolverine

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:57 p.m.

@Blue Marker: home field was very kind to us this year. Our wins against Neb and ND were at home, MSU lost to them on the road. As much as I hate to say (type) it, MSU won convincingly at Iowa while we came up a little short down there. We didn't have the privilege of playing the class of the other division this year (Wisky), however, Sparty was able to claw out a win after spotting them 14 points in the first 5 minutes or so of that game. Just a little voice of reason here. GO BLUE!


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 1:26 p.m.

I travel all over the country and never meet anyone from Michigan State. I meet fellow alumni from Michigan EVERYWHERE. I think it is hard for MSU to understand this.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 12:50 p.m.

Apparently bigtenknight is a State fan first and a competent reader second. Nowhere did the article say that UM was a lock if MSU loses next week. Grow up.

Blue Marker

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 12:29 p.m.

The bottom line is with both teams being equal (sure, MSU beat UM head-to-head, but Michigan beat ND and Nebraska unlike MSU) the nation would rather see UM. Sorry, it may not be fair but life rarely is. MSU just doesn't have the national appeal Michigan does.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 7:44 a.m.

Finishing 2nd in your division and being the 3rd best team in your conference does not merit you a BCS bowl, sorry. You can spin it anyway the fans in Ann Arbor want to. The facts are the facts. The ONLY reason why Michigan is being considered for one is MONEY, plain and simple. Teams ranked higher in the BCS, such as Boise State, will be passed over. So my question to you is, why even have the rankings if we're not going to take the top teams? So yes, to put it simply, Michigan is backing into a BCS game. If they would have taken care of Iowa and/or MSU, they wouldn't be hoping for other teams to slip up to determine their fate. No 'bitterness' here. Just logical reasoning. I suppose you also think U of M should be ranked ahead of a 10-3 MSU team (if they lose to Wisconsin) who beat them head to head, even though their loss would come in a +1 game for the Big Ten title.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 5:27 a.m.

Dude, their 10 an 2! That's hardly backing in to anything. Don't be bitter.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:30 a.m.

I may be wrong on this, but I was under the impression that no conference could have more than 2 teams in the BCS bowl games. It says the SEC could grab 3 spots but on ESPN they said Arkansas was already out because LSU and Alabama already had those two spots locked up. Like I said, I may be wrong though.

Kyle Meinke

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:47 a.m.

Jack, the only way three teams can make it from the same conference is if two of three are ranked No. 1 and No. 2 overall, but neither wins the league title. That likely would happen if Georgia beats LSU (to win the SEC), because Alabama and LSU likely would remain in the top two spots, in some order. Here's a link to the rulebook: <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 3:52 a.m.

Heartbreak M, great point about playing big non conference names. One of my 1st wolverine memories is playing a top 5 T A&amp;M Aggies team during the late 70's &amp; crushing them ( Bare foot Tony Franklin provided only Aggie scoring). Non conf schedule included pac 10 match ups as well as SEC South Carolina home &amp; home ,Heisman George Rogers beat us in AA then we returned favor in mid 80's winning in Columbia. Excited about next years schedule, especially since I live in south Georgia now (of all places) &amp; hear how great the SEC is (give them credit for string of National Titles). Recruiting looks good especially w/ many recruites in attendance of Ohio game. Go Blue!


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:11 a.m.

Remember that 1985 game. That was a huge victory, along with a shutout at Maryland and home win against ND. All on the way to no. 2 in the country. Love those types of schedules.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:03 a.m.

I'm for one cream-puff game to start the season. Get the kinks worked out. Then strap up and play real football until the conference schedule begins.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 3:40 a.m.

The wolverines are NOT a lock to pass Michigan State if MSU loses. It's likely, but not a lock. If MSU lost a close game to UW, voters may feel inclined to keep MSU ahead of Michigan, especially considering MSU beat Michigan by two scores earlier in the season. This could keep Michigan from getting into the BCS top 14. Michigan fans are rooting for the following teams this coming Saturday... 1. LSU over Georgia 2. MSU over Wisconsin (ugh), or Wisconsin crushes MSU 3. Oklahoma State over Oklahoma 4. Texas over Baylor If #1 happens, Michigan might get into a BCS game. If #1 happens, and any of the other three happens, I think it's likely Michigan gets a BCS game.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 3:26 a.m.

I actually would prefer to go to the Capital One Bowl where the opponent would be an SEC team (as opposed to projected Houston in the Sugar Bowl which could pass us to death). Additionally, Capital One Bowl is on 1/2 at which time the students are still out of class and it's easier for students to attend. I think the BCS money-grab, er uh scheduling of games after classes have begun is absolutely not right. Bad for the student body. Bad for the alumni travelling (not able to miss work for the most part), bad for the student athletes. Finally, I think David Brandon has nerve begging for a BCS bowl when he has so publicly stated that he will not schedule BCS conference teams home-and-home, and has placed FCS teams on our own pre-conference schedules over the next few years (Umass, App State). I know that next year will be Notre Dame, Bama at Dallas, and road at Neb and Ohio, but that is a great exception from most year's multiple MAC and FCS team scheduling. If Brandon wants BCS bowl, he should be willing to play a schedule that is deserving of that level of bowl. If Michigan can't win those types of games, then we don't deserve to go anyway. The argument that such a game could knock us out of championship run doesn't hold water, because to be champs, you have to play the best, not the easiest.


Tue, Nov 29, 2011 : 2:42 a.m.

By the way Nic: Our old coach who is now at Univ Arizona will be facing OK State, Toledo, and the whole Pac 10 (at least it is conference play and not multiple MAC teams). To think AZ is facing a more difficult schedule than most Big Ten schools (not us though).


Tue, Nov 29, 2011 : 2:07 a.m.

Nic: You are right about the other teams, but I can't worry about teams I don't have tickets for, I don't have an investment in... But some team has to set the tone, and Michigan should be a leader and not a follower. USC and LSU don't have problems facing teams anywhere or any place. And look at LSU's schedule this year. They have played Oregon, WVU, Bama, Arkansas, Georgia, Florida, MIss State, (though next year's schedule is WEAK). It is a problem throughout college sports, though.

Nic schweigert

Tue, Nov 29, 2011 : 12:46 a.m.

It's all well and good complaining about michigans schedule. But you look at sec teams schedule, yes they play teams in the sec, but they also play jacksonville state and ul Monroe. And not at the beginning of the year. They have weak teams they play in the heart of their conference schedule. So until every bcs team only plays bcs teams then your strength of schedule argument holds no water.


Tue, Nov 29, 2011 : 12:44 a.m.

If Sugar Bowl is it, and that's on Jan 2, that is at least better than the typical long drawn out stuff of Jan 5 bowls, etc. And as far as UMass, didn't realize it is now moving up. A MAC team is better than FCS, but only minimally (and honestly, how many MAC teams can the B10 play?). Other than 2012 season, the scheduling has been embarrassing for the last 5-6 years and the next few years. Brandon has got to do better. (As does the B10, especially Wiscy)

john williams

Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 9:35 p.m.

the sugar bowl which they will almost assuredly go to if they go to a bcs bowl is at 8 pm on Jan 2nd the same day as the capital one bowl (due to January first being a sunday???)


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:31 p.m.

Although I would like to see U-M go to a BCS bowl game, it might be painful against a lot of the potential opponents. For those who don't think Houston would be a worthy opponent for U-M, I disagree. Houston killed Tulsa the other day 48-16, and Tulsa beat Notre Dame in South Bend last year. Tulsa's only other losses this year were blowouts to other Top 10 teams (Oklahoma, Okla State, and Boise State). The Capital One bowl against someone like Georgia would be a good game and a big challenge, also.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 3:17 p.m.

Minor correction: UMass joins the MAC next year and is moving up to Div 1A. (I refuse to learn those other silly names for the sub-divisions.)


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:18 a.m.

Excellent point. If you want to be an elite program you have to play elite competition. I also think that the season ticket holders are tired of paying for 3 or 4 games every year that nobody wants to see. Heck you can't even sell your tickets against those MAC teams for face value. It was not that long ago that the nonconference schedule included a PAC 10 team. I used to tend bar at a very popular Ann Arbor institution, and the PAC 10 fans were always great to have in town. Can we get back to that please? We're college football fans, we want to see some football not UM warming up on what's basically a MAC punching bag.


Mon, Nov 28, 2011 : 4:09 a.m.

Like Boise State and TCU? I'm not a fan of these cream-puff pre-conference schedules either. I liked the season a LOT more when the goal was winning the Big 10 and going to the Rose Bowl and the best way to prepare for the Big 10 season was to schedule solid teams pre-con. With all the (stupid) focus on the BCS, it's a significant disadvantage, even a season-killer, to schedule and lose to solid teams.