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Posted on Sun, Oct 30, 2011 : 8:44 p.m.

Michigan moves up to No. 15 in BCS standings; No. 13 in major polls

By Staff

The Michigan football team moved up three spots to No. 15 in the BCS standings released Sunday night.

The Wolverines, coming off a 36-14 win over Purdue, moved up to No. 13 in both The Associated Press and USA Today coaches polls release earlier Sunday.

Michigan's rise coincided with two other Big Ten teams' fall. In all three rankings, the Wolverines leapfrogged both Michigan State and Wisconsin.

Michigan State (6-2), which lost 24-3 at Nebraska on Saturday, dropped six spots to No. 17 in the BCS standings, from ninth to 15th in the AP poll and from 10th to 16th in the USA Today poll.

Similarly, 6-2 Wisconsin -- upset 33-29 by Ohio State -- fell from No. 15 to No. 20 in the BCS standings, from 12th to 19th in the AP poll and from 11th to 17th in the USA Today poll.

The other Big Ten teams mentioned in this week's rankings include 7-1 Nebraska (No. 10 BCS, No. 9 AP, No. 9 USA Today) and 8-1 Penn State (No. 16 BCS, No. 16 AP, No. 15 USA Today).

The top five teams in BCS standings and the AP poll are identical: 1. LSU, 2. Alabama, 3. Oklahoma State, 4. Stanford and 5. Boise State. In the USA Today poll, Stanford is No. 3 and Oklahoma State is No. 4.

LSU plays at Alabama at 8 p.m. Saturday.

Losses by Clemson and Kansas State leave six undefeated teams in major college football — the top five and No. 14 Houston.

Complete lists: BCS standings | AP poll | USA Today poll


Joe Kidd

Tue, Nov 1, 2011 : 3:31 a.m.

How ironic we are ranked ahead of msu. Oh, woe is us. We should have won that game.

Terrin Bell

Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 8:52 p.m.

Bigwolverine31: Michigan won the Notre Dame game, but Notre Dame really threw the game away. Notre Dame was ahead most of the game, and through out the game kept making stupid decisions. It didn't make those mistakes when it played Michigan State.

lindsay erin

Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 7:34 p.m.

Annnd OSU still hasn't made it into the Top 25 ... : ) Go Blue.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 5:55 p.m.

It's obvious: Michigan is better this year compared to the past 2 years simply because they're now 8 games into the season and show no signs of meltdown. That doesn't mean they're better than they are THIS year: so I agree, we're seeing great improvements in the making but "work in progress" still applies. I agree that "precise ranking" isn't possible at this point: the data base is too small for that. I look at the below-10th teams as just a set of potentials & probabilities: any team between 11th and 25th may trend upward or downward, depending on as-yet unseen variables. Last game to next: I think I saw improvements in Michigan's offensive line during the last game. I sure hope that continues and "trends upward" from here on in. That single factor is the ground on which Denard Robinson must stand, without O support, No.16 has no place on which to stand - or progress. Iowa: depending on which commentator you read, Iowa looks to be either a complete mess or "somewhat capable." Michigan is going out there to find the answer to that question and we won't have their answer until next Saturday afternoon. Go Blue! Beat Iowa!

jeff blue

Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 5:38 p.m.

Another example: the MSU offense was terrible on the road at both OSU and Nebraska. We can win all of our home games and most of our road games. I expect to beat OSU and NEB at home.

Joe Kidd

Tue, Nov 1, 2011 : 3:32 a.m.

I think we should beat NE and osu at home but it will take errorless football to do so I think.

jeff blue

Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 5:31 p.m.

These ranking a pretty much meaningless -- the Sagarin rankings may be a little better. Who wants to go play a really good B10 team on the road? Where you play makes a big difference (most teams can win at home). No one wants to go up and play at Camp Randall -- do they?


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 4:54 p.m.

Sept/October are for pretenders, November is for contenders. the next four games will prove how good M is. while I like what I see and they have made adjustments, they haven't beaten, IMO, a good team. I think IA and IL are possible wins, but depending on which team from NE shows up, could be close, and the team from ohio gets better every week with o lie ers coming back into the line up. They always get up for M, so this one is too close to call. GO BLUE!!


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 3:08 p.m.

If people think Michigan should not be ranked where they are then what would be a good ranking for them? 25? 45? They are one of 18 teams with 1 or less losses. So what 2 loss team is better than Michigan? I would say MSU is it. Is michigan better than Houston? or Southern Miss? how about Cincinnati? Well if they are then you get your 15 ranking. On the comments about Iowa being dangerous. Michigan needs to do a couple of things: 1) bring pressure and force Vandenburg to throw quickly (the Dline needs to play like they did this sat.) 2) double cover Mcnutt 3) Show up ready to play, michigan is a much better and much more skilled team then Iowa this year 4) the oline and Dline has to dominate or Michigan will lose ! Their Defense is not good this year compared to the last few. They are very inexperienced and dont have the typical coaching that Iowa seniors usually do. The ultimate equalizer though is the weather. Michigans Oline has to show up. It is suppose to be very cold and rainy with 20 mph wind out of the south. I think Denard looked a little better on Sat. He has no touch on deep balls, typically either under throwing by 15 yards or over throwing by 20 or more. He did show he could get his feet set before throws most of the game, but he still is pre determining where to throw before the play even starts (which led to a pick and almost another by the same guy earlier in the game). I think we need to look at Denard the passer as a true freshman right now that was not taught the last 2 years how to throw with fundamentals or how to read defensive coverages (whether because RR sucks or because his offense did not require it I dont know but either way it shows!). Hopefully the weather is not that big of a factor like the MSU game. Go Blue!


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 1:28 p.m.

Don't read too much into Iowa's loss to Minnesota, Heartbreak. Iowa is still a pretty darn good football team and are extremely tough to beat at home (5-0 this season). Remember, they lost to Minnesota last year, too, but it didn't stop them from taking UM out behind the woodshed at the Big House. Michigan can certainly win at Iowa this coming Saturday, but it's not going to come easy. In fact, I think it may be the toughest test on the schedule to date.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 11:54 a.m.

we shall see. i want to see how they do with the next two games. then i will say it is high enough or not. i stil think they are a little to high. having a good season. rankings are for reading and talk. wins are for the record.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 11:47 a.m.

Lots of good points made for each of those above. Michigan could beat MSU if we had a rematch on our home field but would probably lose 2 out 3 against them. The next four weeks will reveal how good this Michigan team really is. Sparty has to face IA on the road, a team they lost to last year and also NW on the road, a team they should have lost to last year so I would not mail in any victories on their behalf, either. If we are ranked in the Top 15, then I hope we play like it.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 10:50 a.m.

I wonder why Penn State who's only loss is to #2 Alabama isn't getting more love. I guess because they aren't winning by big enough margins.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 2:10 p.m.

I think Penn State's signature loss was winning 14-10 over Temple (5-3, 3-2). ; ) I know Temple is not horrible this year, but if Penn state was Top-10 material, they would have beaten them by a couple scores. To get past Indiana, Purdue and Temple by less than a touchdown doesn't get you very far in the polls it seems. Remember, in the BCS world, it's no longer just about winning, but rather by how many points you win. I think Penn State is right where they belong. They haven't done anything to show they don't deserve to be in the Top-25, but have done nothing to show they deserve to be in the Top-10 either. If they knock off Nebraska, they'll get their due respect, but as of today, there is very little due. My two cents...


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 1:25 p.m.

boise state played georgia and won decisively. VT played Miami and Wake Forest (won both) and lost to Clemson (who has proven themselves this year). Houston: UCLA (victory) and a bunch of nobodies. I don't know how to sort it all out, but until the Big Ten starts actually playing and beating out of conference BCS or ranked teams, I don't think anybody in the big ten has distinguished itself and deserves ranking--Michigan included. Though I like the way Michigan has recovered this year, I still think they haven't proven much.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 1:03 p.m.

I would say they could much more likely lose all 3 than win all 3. But my point is at the moment their only lose is to #2. And yes they don't have a resume of "signature wins" but neither do several other teams ahead of them. And PSU's "signature loss" is better than most. To clairify, I am not, nor do I know any, PSU grads or students.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 12:23 p.m.

With Penn State next facing Nebraska, then Ohio State and Wisconsin on the road, something tells me you're not going to have to wonder for very much longer. I'm guessing they'll be three decisive losses for the Nittany Lions, possibly making their 10-7 win over Illinois their last of the season. Or, they win and prove their worth.

Craig Lounsbury

Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 12:18 p.m.

I love the "who have they played?" game. Boise State, Houston, Michigan, V tech don't exactly have the most impressive schedule of wins either.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 11:01 a.m.

Maybe it's because PSU has no offense and if they were playing real teams, they would be exposed to be a mediocre team, like they are. (Look at a list of who they have played and beaten, and tell me which of those victories are impressive--Temple, Illinois, Iowa who lost to Minnesota, Northwestern, Indiana State!?!?, Eastern Michigan, Indiana and Purdue). Margin of victory has less to do with it than the weak competition.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 7:33 a.m.

@big wolverine, first I would mention that DR is a big reason Michigan is 7-1 and would like people to quit bashing him and realize that YES, he is not Andrew Luck, but this is only his second yr starting, and he has been coached by two different coaching staffs and im sure every coach coaches different and with his bad throws are an indication that he's trying to do it like the current competent coaches want him too. Not like the unfundementally sound coaching staff of RR. Go BLUE!


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 1:55 a.m.

Rankings are subjective and a best guess. Michigan beat ND, while ND beat MSU (badly) and MSU has two losses. PSU has only one loss. So, who knows and at this stage, who cares? In any case, this team is generally mediocre with a few standouts. It is amazing what the coaches have done with the defense, which was such a joke last year. Denard Robinson is not even close to being a QB; he has clearly demonstrated that he does not have the skills needed at that position. With better talent over the next two/three years we'll see some real improvement and perhaps compete at the national level. In the meantime, in my opinion, being in this position (with only one loss) at this time regarding the Legends division is quite an accomplishment.

Joe Kidd

Tue, Nov 1, 2011 : 3:36 a.m.

I think DRob did very last year. He is a spread offense QB and thrives in that offense.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 1:16 a.m.

And Wisconsin is still ranked why????? (They have lost to the only "tough" competition they have faced, except for maybe Nebraska who in my opinion is still unproven, even given the MSU game) How is Michigan ahead of MSU who just spanked us? How is PSU so highly ranked? All these rankings make no sense to me.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 8:47 p.m.

PSU is ranked high because they have one loss to the #2 team in the country. I think they deserve where they are.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 8:31 p.m.

Just face the facts-- these are young non professional players. Performance varies from week to week. MSU usually does better against Michigan that it does the rest of the season.


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 2:01 p.m.

My question is more facetious. I just think this whole thing speaks of the fallacy of rankings, especially this year. :)


Mon, Oct 31, 2011 : 1:18 p.m.

Michigan is ranked ahead of MSU based on record and most recent performance of both teams...same reason Nebraska is ranked ahead of Wisconsin. It's also why, despite MSU getting pummeled by ND, MSU is ranked and ND isn't.