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Posted on Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 5:59 a.m.

Michigan picked to finish middle of Big Ten by most college football preview magazines

By Dave Birkett

The college football season doesn’t begin for three months, but magazines previewing the fall already are in bookstores nationwide.

The Michigan football team, most pundits agree, is headed for a middle-of-the-pack finish in the Big Ten.

“If you’re a long-time Michigan fan, eight wins doesn’t sound like a lot, but after the last two years, yeah, (they should be) much better than the last two years, no doubt about it,” said Phil Steele, editor of Phil Steele’s College Football Preview. “Who would have ever thought they’d have two straight losing years after 40 straight winning years?”


Steele picked Michigan to finish sixth in the Big Ten in his magazine and said Wednesday he expects the Wolverines to win seven or eight games.

That seems to be the consensus. Lindy’s College Football also picked Michigan to finish sixth in the Big Ten, Athlon Sports had the Wolverines tied for fifth, while Kickoff College Football Preview picked Michigan seventh and The Sporting News ranked the Wolverines eighth.

Athlon, the only magazine to project records, has Michigan finishing 7-5 overall, 4-4 in the Big Ten, and playing Missouri in the Insight Bowl.

“It’s a make or break season for Rich Rodriguez,” the magazine writes, concluding, “With non-conference games against Connecticut and at Notre Dame, an 0-2 start isn’t a stretch. U-M should return to the postseason, but it won’t be easy.”

Steele said he runs nine sets of computer power rankings to help make his prediction. Three of the nine had Michigan winning nine games.

“But of course there’s nine sets so that means that six did not call for a nine-win season,” Steele said. “I would say best-case scenario for Michigan would be a 10-win season because the Notre Dame game in Week 2 is a winnable game, the Iowa game at home is winnable.

“The only two games where I have them as a clear underdog is at Penn State and at Ohio State. But in my mind every other game falls into the winnable category.”

In his magazine, Steele ranks Michigan 37th nationally and predicts a 5-1 start with wins over UConn in the home opener and Michigan State in early October. He also writes that coach Rich Rodriguez “is one of my top coaches on the hot seat, but should be off it after 2010.”


“Overall I just think that they didn’t catch a lot of breaks last year,” Steele said Wednesday. “They’ll catch them this year and you’re probably looking at about a seven-, eight-win season for Michigan.”

Sporting News, the most pessimistic of the magazines, was one of two publications (Lindy’s was the other) to put Michigan guard Steve Schilling on its preseason all-Big Ten first team.

The magazine also called Schilling the best interview in the Big Ten and cornerback Demar Dorsey the top impact freshman, though there’s a good chance Dorsey does not get admitted to Michigan.

Of Michigan’s Oct. 9 game against MSU, Sporting News writes, “If the Wolverines have any hope of a turnaround they need to beat the Spartans, who underachieved in 2009.”

Lindy’s surmises that “Rodriguez might have to get to a bowl or beat Ohio State to keep his job. Better make that both,” and the Kickoff Preview suggest Michigan “might have to outscore teams to win.”

All five magazines project Ohio State as Big Ten champs and put the Buckeyes in their preseason top five.

Steele has Ohio State losing to Oklahoma in the national championship game.

“What concerns me with Ohio State this year is the schedule,” Steele said. “They do have to play both Iowa and Wisconsin on the road. I think when you see the AP top 10 come out, Iowa’s clearly in the top 10, Wisconsin’s one of those 10-11-12 teams.

“So the schedule’s not without its landmines, but when I factor in everything I just think Ohio State’s ahead of those programs enough to get tough road wins. Neither will be easy, but I do pick Ohio State to run the table this year play in the title game.”

Dave Birkett covers University of Michigan football for He can be reached by phone at 734-623-2552 or by e-mail at Follow him on Twitter @davebirkett.


Robbie Webb

Tue, Jun 8, 2010 : 3:14 p.m.

Jaxon, every team goes through those problems, but my point is I have yet to see one go through them all at once and be successful. Michgian will have a much better season this year. Count on it.


Mon, Jun 7, 2010 : 7:22 p.m.

Murrow - is right on the money with those predictions. I even think the Illinois game could fall into the tossup to loss categories. Mich has struggled with Illinois lately. That puts the best case scenario at less than 5-7 this season and more likely 3-9.


Mon, Jun 7, 2010 : 7:02 p.m.

Quote from RW: "Show me a team that had to go through youth, no depth, key injuries, walkons at key spots, and very little veteran leadership all at the same time and did well. " My response would be every team faces these issues. Youth - every team has youth - turnover on every team is at least 25% every year. No depth - same issue as youth - every team has this issue. Key injuries - every team must deal with injury and other teams don't use injury as an excuse. Walk-ons at key spots - of course there were walkons because key players were driven away by the new coaching staff. Very little veteran leadership - same issue as youth, depth, walkons - just repeating the same issue over and over. All teams must deal with these. The great teams deal with them in a manner that doesn't cause them to lose twice as many games as they win.

John-Maize Blueblood

Mon, Jun 7, 2010 : 8:22 a.m.

Robbie, I agree with Terry that you should not keep wasting your time trying to reason with those folks, just like they should stop wasting their time trying to make their points to you. The point is, right or wrong, our beliefs in the team are what they are and no one can change them with pointless arguments. This is only June and it is way too early to predict what is going to happen in September and on. All True Blue Fans only hope for better seasons from this point forward for the team. ALL IN FOR MICHIGAN!!!


Mon, Jun 7, 2010 : 7:01 a.m. defense = sieve i can't wait to see robbie webb backpedal once the season gets underway.

Robbie Webb

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 9:26 p.m.

I agree, Terry. I thought by actually presenting what happened that the Rich Rodriguez haters would finally understand, but clearly they are just going to have to wait until the season starts. Then we'll see what they have to say, if they decide to say anything at all.

Terry Star21

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 9:15 p.m.

Robbie... way too much time arguing with the football hacks, come on read their postings... are you kidding me? Read Theo212 and myself if you really want accurate Michigan Football facts, join us on the sidelines for a game - your whole perspective will change. Listen to people whom actually played the game, not some armchair wanna be, but could never be....


Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 4:51 p.m.

Murrow, they never said they are running the straight 3-3-5! not like all the time. 3 and out, really? Im still waiting for you to provide some factual basis to support your statement.

Robbie Webb

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 1:42 p.m.

Seriously, with arguments like that (e.g. thinking they are running the 3-3-5 all day and night and worried about the offense), you're making this really easy for me.

Robbie Webb

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 1:35 p.m.

Murrow, the offense is not the problem, they will put points up. As for defense, they never said they are running the straight 3-3-5. They have said that numerous times and there have been blogs posted on this site explaining that. They are NOT running the 3-3-5. They were experimenting with it to give off different looks. Greg Robinson likes to match up according to the offense, which is what they said they will do, which is smart. So again, they will start off 6-0. If you think otherwise, you need to go back and read the articles if a 3-3-5 is what you're worried about.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 12:56 p.m.

Robbie: Read Carefully. Three Conference wins is what I said. We have a gimmick offense. It is not the kind of spread that UF or OSU run (which are best understood as power spreads). Our spread relies on gimmicks. It is a dead end. And now we have a gimmick defense: 3-3-5!! You've got to be kidding me! That surrenders the line of scrimmage play. A defense that was porous last year with very little talent will remain so this year with even less talent and a gimmick scheme. Prediction UConn -- Lose @ND -- Lose UMass -- Win BGSU -- Toss up @Indiana -- T/U MSU -- Lose Iowa -- Lose @PSU -- Lose Ill -- Win @Purdue -- T/U Wisc -- Lose OSU -- Lose Record: If Michigan wins the toss-ups, 5-7 and 3-5 in conference. Good Night and Good Luck

Robbie Webb

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 11:51 a.m.

And 3 and out, you STILL have not answered my question. Show me a team that had to go through youth, no depth, key injuries, walkons at key spots, and very little veteran leadership all at the same time and did well. I want you to tell me how that's the coaches fault. If you would have given that team to any coach, they would have struggled.

Robbie Webb

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 11:43 a.m.

3 and out, really? You honestly think they'll lose to Uconn, ND (who we beat last year)MSU, PSU? No...that's inaccurate. Michigan will go 6-0 t start things off. I would like for you to provide some factual basis to support your statement.

Edward R Murrow's Ghost

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 8:01 a.m.

Picked either 6th or 7th and that's "middle" of the Big 11? I guess, but it's also a second division finish... again. And it is a generous prediction. I think three conference wins at most this season. Good Night and Good Luck

3 And Out

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 3:40 a.m.

UConn Loss, ND Loss, 2 Mac games Ws, IU tossup, PSU loss, MSU loss, Iowa loss, Ill. tossup, OSU loss, FCS game win yeah! 5-7 despite what Brandon Graham says about them being better players under RR, the numbers dont show it...but spin away son!

3 And Out

Sun, Jun 6, 2010 : 3:36 a.m.

5-7 with 2 Big Ten wins. It is tragic what has happened to our program under Rich Rodriguez, and with him solely responsible....but it is what it is. Maybe Barwis will have more time to work on his self promotional website after they are all wiped off the slate after this 5-7 season. Go Blue.

Robbie Webb

Sat, Jun 5, 2010 : 2:15 p.m.

But I agree, the other coaches records say, ''I've been here longer and didn't have youth, no depth, key injuries, walkons at key spots, and very little veteran leadership and experience going against me all at the same time.'' Rich Rod's record says the opposite, which is why Michigan has struggled, it's not coaching. And I am still waiting for a point or fact to prove me wrong on everything I have said now and in the past.

Robbie Webb

Sat, Jun 5, 2010 : 2:12 p.m.

Jaxon, the other coaches have also been where they are longer and didn't have the things going wrong for them like Rich Rod did.


Sat, Jun 5, 2010 : 2:07 p.m.

RW-the other coaches' records speak for themselves as does RR's.

Terry Star21

Sat, Jun 5, 2010 : 12:26 p.m.

No, I think the 7 or 8 wins predicted are very accurate. By the seventh game we will have 7 wins and by the eighth game we will have 8 wins... that is a given. The last 4 will hold a challenge, but Michigan will prevail - and oh yea, we love to show the predictors their wrong, always. Looking at those top 5 polls at the side... I don't think you could dig a hole deep enough for osu when they crash and burn and are buried this year - prynor will wish he went elsewhere of course.....

Robbie Webb

Sat, Jun 5, 2010 : 11:17 a.m.

Jaxon, you still are not supporting your statements with facts. All of those guys you just named have been where they are for a while. And they did not have the same start that Rodriguez did because they did not have all that stuff going wrong for him. Look at what you're saying, why are you comparing Rodriguez to people like Paterno or Tressel? Rich Rodriguez is a great coach otherwise he wouldn't be here, hence why he is still here. It's not coaching, dude.


Sat, Jun 5, 2010 : 6:41 a.m.

If we simply looks around the league there are many other coaches that I would rather have lead UM football. I believe if talent levels were equal, the following coaches would win vs UM based on coaching alone: Tressel, Paterno, Ferentz, DAntonio, Bielema, Fitzgerald, and even Hope (look at actual record vs UM and OSU). That puts UM at # 8 or# 9 in the Big Ten based on coaching alone. All of the above coaches took a program and made it better or maintained program excellence. UM went in the opposite direction.

Robbie Webb

Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 6:45 p.m.

More experience does not lead to more wins?!?! With all do respect, you must be joking. Jaxon, you need to stop drinking the Rich Rod haterade and wake up, brother. It is not coaching in any shape, way, or form. Again, since you seem to avoide this question, show me a team that had to go through youth, no depth, key injuries, walkons at key spots, and very little veteran experience all at the same time and did well. That is what Rich Rod had to deal with. It is NOT his fault. Did you not read the article where Brandon Graham was commending him? Did you forget the fact our athletic director played under Bo and knows about Michigan football and our traditions? Did you forget all that was wrong with our team? I want you to provide some facts so we can have a good debate, but you always just assume, and you know what happens when you assume. Saying, ''He coaches bad'' is not an argument and is also inaccurate.


Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 5:38 p.m.

Michigan's returning players - more than any other Big 10 team - and coaches are precisely the reason why I believe they will again be in the bottom of the Big 10. More experience does not lead to more wins, especially if the talent level and coaching is not there.

Robbie Webb

Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 1:17 p.m.

Rightmind, I can agree that others predictions about them finishing near the middle is not surprising, I never expected anyone to predict a Rose Bowl winning season. But at the same time, no one is saying that they are going to do bad, on the contrary, they know Michigan is not full of veterans, but you have to understand that alot of people are coming back, which is evidence of youth. If you ask me, Brandon Graham was not our biggest loss even though he was clearly the best player on the field on. To me, it was Donovan Warren, because secondary is where we suffered. The defensive line was never the issue and is not he issue. The line this year, although they will most likely not have a play maker like Graham, they will be solid and be able to hold their own. Same with the linebackers. It's secondary that has to really step up. I can't say how improved J.T. Floyd is until I see him in August. Woolfolk should be solid. Kovacs did excellent for a walkon (all big ten second team) and should be a better fit at strong safety and with Gordon at free safety. Michigan has the talent and the coaching staff to have a great season and make people eat their words.


Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 1:12 p.m.

Wolverine73, take a chill pill son you'll never make 50 with all that anxiety and anger. Michigan is headed in a direction and that may or may not be with RR. Every football team just like every business makes changes sometimes for the good sometimes for the bad and Michigan is no exception to the rule. At this time there are those of us that go with the flow becuase we understand how things work. Michigan is a quality program that is on a down cycle which may or may not turn this year we'll have to wait and see. At the very least fans like us are getting hungry and we're not going to take winning for granted in the future at least for awhile. Hey, look at it like this the housing market is on a down cycle but I have patience that it will turn and I know that all the anxiety and anger in the world is not going to make that happen so I go with the flow vs wasting all that negative and painful energy. I'm confident that our Wolves will turn with or without RR.


Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 12:31 p.m.

Robbie: At this point, the only way to evaluate is past performance and who's coming back. I think 6th if not a bit generous is a fair assessment. Keep your nose clean son. If you end up in prison its not going to be pretty.

Robbie Webb

Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 11:10 a.m.

surprised they didn't do well?* And maybe you'll like this article, take it from Brandon Graham.

Robbie Webb

Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 11:07 a.m.

Jaxon and Timeatwork, based on what? We have alot more starters returning than anyone in the big ten. What does that tell you? Youth? Yes! Again I ask, because no one can answer it, show me a team that had to go through youth, no depth, key injuries, walkons at key spots, and very little veteran leadership and experience all at the same time and did well. Tell me how that's the coaches fault. I refer you to the article above. Michigan almost had to start from scratch and get new players for offense and defense, and you're surprised they did well? And timeatwork, no one said they are waiting for freshman to come in and take over, they said they are waiting for them to come in to see how they compete, there will be maybe one or two that sees playing time this year. Jaxon, ''Michigan is not good'' is inaccurate and I would like you to provide some factual basis to support your statement. And you can't play the, ''Look at our record'' card either for two reasons, number one, that was last year when we had alot of youth playing college football amongst other things. Number two, that's in the past, it doesn't matter or dictate our future. I failed my first trigonometry test early last semester, but just because I didn't do well doesn't mean I wasn't going to do great the next time. Same thing, bigger scale.


Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 7:24 a.m.

the defense is going to be a sieve. thats the only reason the offense looked good in the spring game. wins against UMass, BG, Ind, and Ill if lucky, Purdue if very lucky. 5 wins tops. i don't see how DR is all of a sudden a great qb when he completely sucked last year. did 3 months of not playing football really propel him over a guy that started every game last year? when the coaching staff says they are waiting for the freshman class to show up to sure up the defense, you know its going to be a long year. enjoy it while you can.


Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 6:31 a.m.

These are magazines trying to sell copies. Michigan has a lot of fans. How many copies are the magazines going to sell if they rank Michigan at the bottom of the Big Ten? These magazines are still giving Mich the benefit of the doubt in order to sell copies to the huge Mich fan base. Given a choice between putting Indiana at the bottom or Mich, it's going to be Indiana. Bottom line - Mich is not that good and will likely finish in the bottom of the conference.

Robbie Webb

Fri, Jun 4, 2010 : 12:08 a.m.

Let me say it again. Coaching is NOT the issue. But hey, if you don't want to take my word for it, fine. I think all Michigan fans can agree what kind of player and person Brandon Graham was on and off the field.

Robbie Webb

Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 11:57 p.m.

Recruiting convicts? This is not the first time players have been recruited that have had a sketchy past or got in trouble while on campus. Don't play that card.

Robbie Webb

Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 11:54 p.m.

Wolverine, based on what? You seem to have a vision into the future of how the team is going to do. Speed beats big everytime, and they're not that small either. Coaching has nothing to do with our record. Show me a team that had to go through youth, no depth, very little veteran leadership and experience, key injuries, and walkons at key spots all at the same time and did well. Rich Rod is not going anywhere, and I don't know where you are getting the idea that we'll win only four games at most, I don't know who you think we're losing to, but this is not last years team.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 10:44 p.m.

40 years down the tubes. I hope RR has learned something about the big ten and can show major improvement this year. RR and his staff were in over their heads the firdt 2 years and showed no improvement at all when you look hard at the wins and who they were against. RR needs to win againts the big boys and blow out a few scrubs. The way we were dominated last year against state as poor as they were should have cost him his job. Barwis did not have them in shape either if you look back at 2nd half after 2nd half where we were out toughed over and over. Time to toughen up and play Michigan ball where we own the second half and pound it down your throat and you can not do a dang thing about it. GO BLUE!!!


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 10:43 p.m.

Michigan and their pathetic coaching staff will only manage to win three or four games this fall if that. The team may start off well but as soon as they get into the middle of the season the injuries to all the small players will begin to add up to losses just like last year. Tate can't take the abuse, the defense will be laughable, and the special teams are sad. Small fast players get stopped running into a brick wall of big, GOOD defensive players every time. Everyone has us figured out - it's not that tough. Rodriguez has got to go. How much more shame and dirt should Michigan be forced to eat because of this guy? How much lower can you go than recruiting convicts? The rest of the football world is laughing at us.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 10:14 p.m.

The "gurus" had you ranked last year,we saw how that worked out. Over/under 6, and I dont mean lawsuits. M will finish in 6th at best if everything goes right. 8 wins, not going to hapen.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 9:50 p.m.

Fearless Predictions for 2010 UMich football:. Mich 34 UConn 27 Mich 42 Notre Dame 24 Mich 45 UMass 7 Mich 34 BGSU 17 Mich 28 Indiana 14 Mich 35 MSU 31 Mich 28 Iowa 24 Penn St. 31 Mich 24 Mich 42 Illinois 24 Mich 28 Purdue 21 Wisc. 21 Mich 17 OSU 24 Mich 21. Then, in a mid-level, yet-to-be-figured-out bowl game, Michigan beats another 9-3 or 8-4 team 37-27.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 1:39 p.m.

The Sporting News has us 8th but eveidently missed the spring game.Players like JT Floyd, Lewan, Molk, the three new backs,Drob, Stokes the Gordon bros,Campbell etc are not to be found.But they do list Mesko and Olesnavage as our kickers and Floyd Simmons as OLB!


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 1:30 p.m.

Of all the mags the best is Phil Steele.I agree with LUMBERG about evaluating players in advance.The Sporting News is a joke.They don't even know our players.They have Mondross at FB,which we don't use and RR has shifted him to LB.They have Schoefield at C.Khoury and Pace are the backups but Molk will be 99% sure to start.Schofield is battling Hugye for his spot and will have a good chance of getting it.They also miss Lewan completely.They are not aware that Shaw, Hopkins, Toussaint and Cox are in front of Smith who is good but too slow to start,plus can blow out his kneee again if used too much. On defense they feature Will Hennigan over Campbell, Banks and Black, the best defensive player to come out of Ohio last year.The OLB is really good:Floyd Simmons.Also Kovacs and Mike Williams are picked ahead of the Gordons,and they list Mesko and Olesnavage as the kickers! Do not buy this piece of junk!


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 11:52 a.m.

Well golly gee boys and girls, I'll guarantee Mich. a perfect season. Do any of you see how projecting at this time of year is ludicrous. Man you boys and girls must really be bored. I will say it's time for Michigan to show substantial improvement and as far as Ohio State goes it's time for them to compete with the big boys and WIN. Ohio State just like Michigan used to do beats up the big 10 and starts sabre rattling or more descriptive thumping their chests then bang. Just like it's time for RR to show his stuff it's time for ohio state to play and win with the big boys and I mean big boys. Tressel has had many, many opportunities to show his stuff with the big boys I think he's had more opportunities than anyone I can think of so no more excuses Tressel this is your year let's see what ya got. I think we even helped the bucs along the way with an offensive lineman that didn't get enough of moms Apple pie at Michigan.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 10:09 a.m.

Isn't UM the "leader and the best"? Why do they need the motivation of underrated or disrespected? I would think that the "King", and his great coaching abilities would have them winning... without needing false motivation. Based on the last two years... being ranked in the middle of the pack is generous.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 9:50 a.m.

I have said 8-9 wins for the last few months now based on schedule and experience coming back. By the way, it's interesting how tater's comments speak of UM consistently underachieving under coach Carr, whereas insidethehall's comments objectively disupute that with his evidence that UM won it all under that same coach Carr in '97. Tater's constant disrespect of coach Carr makes me wonder if he was "All In" when Carr was the coach or if he is a bandwagon fan who is now fully aboard now that Carr is gone. Hmmm...just using his argument in reverse.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 8:49 a.m.

I love the fact that so called "gurus" are underrating Michigan. This team will now enter the season with an even bigger chip on its shoulder. It's also interesting that "OSUbeBetter" is now trying to disguise his inflammatory statements under a cloak of "objectivity". It's obvious that Buckeye fans are beginning to get a little worried about Denard Robinson outperforming an overrated Terrelle Pryor this season. Good luck.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 8:47 a.m.

How can anyone possibly predict how a team will place three months before the season starts and two months before practice starts - we have yet to see any new recruits play (some just had their high school prom days ago) I sound like a broken record - but 12 months of stories about college sports is overkill and predictions in June from magazines no one reads or even knows exist is a waste of space!


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 8:35 a.m.

History lesson for the young Birkett: Michigan has always had their best teams when expectations were low. Research 1997...hint hint.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 8:33 a.m.

Just seeing first to second year improvement at the QB position should get us at least 3-4 more wins this year I'd think. Cutting down on turnovers and scoring some more points will make a big difference. Obviously though, the defense needs to get better for this to happen. I don't think the D will be that good, but at least if they get to the point of being an average Big Ten defense, we can win at least 8 games. All this assumes that we find several running backs who are solid and can stay injury free, AND several more receivers step up who can get open. I agree with Tater that if RR can instill an "us against the world" kind of attitude in the team, we will surprise a number of teams this year. Beating U-Conn in the opener would be huge toward establishing some confidence and setting the tone for the rest of the season. Go Blue!


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 6:55 a.m.

Michigan will go AT LEAST 8-4, maybe 9-3. I think Wisconsin will be more dangerous than PSU, who don't have a clear starting QB who is worth a darn. Iowa will be tough, as will MSU, and OSU. Non-conference wise I think ND will be tough simply because it is on the road, but remember they are adjusting to ALOT of new players and a new offensive system. Either way, Michigan will finish better than most people think and I will say this: the streak ends at the Horse Shoe this season. Michigan played toe-to-toe with OSU last season (check the stats Buckeye trolls)with 5 turnovers being a big reason the Wolverines couldn't get ahead of the Buckeyes. With more experience on offense and a better defense overall, and less turnovers, Michigan will win.


Thu, Jun 3, 2010 : 6:44 a.m.

I think that's a generous position. Still questions at QB, Big holes all over the Defense, O line will be inexperienced, no depth anywhere, Injuries to small bodies over the course of the season. My guess is that win or loose the Connecticut game will expose the holes in the Defense that the rest of the teams Michigan play will continue to target. Add to that the relatively simple Offense Michigan runs and my guess is that Michigan finishes 2010 in the exact same place they finished in 2009. Maybe they go as high as #9 but that's it. Michigan as a team may be improving, but remember the 12 teams they play are hard at work as well.