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Posted on Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 10:40 a.m.

Michigan ranked No. 8 in preseason AP Top 25, picks up 1 first-place vote

By Kyle Meinke

Michigan is the best college football team in the country.

At least, that's according to one AP pollster.

The Wolverines were slotted No. 8 in the AP's preseason Top 25 poll, which was released Saturday morning. They also were No. 8 in the coaches poll, so the ranking is unsurprising.

What was surprising: Michigan picked up one first-place vote from the Champaign News-Gazette's Bob Asmussen, who covers Illinois.

The only other teams to pick up first-place votes were No. 1 USC (25), No. 2 Alabama (17), No. 3 LSU (16) and No. 4 Oklahoma (1).

Oregon rounded out the top five.

Michigan is the highest-rated Big Ten team in the initial poll, followed by No. 12 Wisconsin, No. 13 Michigan State, No. 17 Nebraska and No. 18 Ohio State.

The Wolverines were not ranked in last year's preseason poll, but finished the season at No. 12.

The full preseason AP Top 25
1. USC (25) 1,445 points
2. Alabama (17) 1,411 points
3. LSU (16) 1,402 points
4. Oklahoma (1) 1,286 points
5. Oregon 1,274 points
6. Georgia 1,107 points
7. Florida State 1,093 points
8. Michigan (1) 1,000 points
9. South Carolina 994 points
10. Arkansas 963 points
11. West Virginia 856 points
12. Wisconsin 838 points
13. Michigan State 742 points
14. Clemson 615 points
15. Texas 569 points
16. Virginia Tech 548 points
17. Nebraska 485 poitns
18. Ohio State 474 points
19. Oklahoma STate 430 points
20. TCU 397 points
21. Stanford 383 points
22. Kansas State 300 points
23. Florida 214 points
24. Boise State 212 points
25. Louisville 105 points

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



Sun, Aug 19, 2012 : 3:46 p.m.

Whoop Dee Dooo, one vote for first place. We chat again after Sparty kicks your butt for five in a row. Go Green Go White or Go Home a Loser


Sun, Aug 19, 2012 : 4:33 a.m.

Terry gets an AP vote? Dude didn't even go to college.


Sun, Aug 19, 2012 : 1:46 a.m.

Wasn't Michigan's year-end ranking 13th (or 12th)? Seems like Michigan is getting some expectations as well as respect - maybe based on a potentially great senior group and maybe because Hoke and his coordinators are so well respected. Anyone bragging on the SEC teams ought to remember two things: No. 1 goes to USC and the SEC has used illegitimate recruiting policies to get as far as they have. Once the recruiting advantage disappears, it'll be back to redneck-almost-good-enough football for the SEC. One other thing: Michigan will have better ranked players starting in 2013 and will be on a par with any SEC team. Let's see Brandon & Co. arrange some matchups with SEC teams in 2013 and 2014. Oh, and I hope everyone noticed that Notre Dame is nowhere to be seen in the Top 25. There's even been a call to force N.D. into a lower tier conference, since it's been ages since that team lived up to all the hype. Good riddance!


Sun, Aug 19, 2012 : 4:15 a.m.

Illegitimate? Seriously? You're not even worth fooling with. People are high on USC though and that team is a house of cards. With what 70 scholarships they are an injury away frog balling to ASU and going 8-5. Then there is always Lane Kiffin's mouth writing checks that his buttox cannot cash. Thay'll probably have to beat Oregon twice even if they don't have any injuries. There are probably 5 SEC teams that could handle USC tomorrow. ND will have to join a conference before they can go to a lower conference. You Big 10 guys just don't seem to know this sport very well.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 5:42 p.m.

Just for the record, I noticed that Kyle ranked Indiana #1, UM #25, MSU #2, and OSU #3.

Kyle Meinke

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:48 p.m.

edjasbord, I consulted my Mayan calendar. Year of the Hoosiers, baby.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 5:19 p.m.

Ok, whoever voted us 1st is crazy. Had to be Hoke, but then I can't really see Hoke doing that even if he thought it was true.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:43 p.m.

If you are so high as to not know that you are high, then you are really high.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 5:20 p.m.

Apparently I'm high, because I clearly read "AP" in the article and still thought "Coaches Poll".


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:21 p.m.

Okay, I'm all for the love for the Wolverines but really, a first-place vote? That fellow from the Champaign News-Gazette needs to have his vote pulled. Michigan has questions on D since last year and while Denard has improved through Spring practice by leaps and bounds accuracy-wise, he doesn't have Hemingway anymore and Roundtree needs to regain his 2010 form quickly. Should UM escape Jerryworld with a win against the Tide, then vote them a #1 team, until then, keep Michigan pretty close to where it is. There is no reason UM shouldn't end the season with more than two losses... yes it is more difficult playing on the road, but realistically, the team has that kind of potential and Hoke and Mattison can work miracles (see last year's D). My only concern is Borges forcing too much pro-set on DRob to where it stifles his offensive creativity in favor of some misplaced marriage to a scheme that doesn't -truly- fit Robinson's style.

Kyle Meinke

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:49 p.m.

CFair and D21, I talked to that fellow from the News-Gazette on his vote. Will post the write-up tomorrow morning. And you won't want to miss it.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:52 p.m.

That pollster obviously was chasing after a hot UM coed and thought he'd impress her.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:16 p.m.

Is Bob Asmussen a UM grad?

Kyle Meinke

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:45 p.m.

RWBill (and Terry), I actually talked to Bob about his pick. Will publish something on it, probably tomorrow morning. He had some interesting things to say. A little teaser: The No. 1 reason he picked Michigan is Hoke and his staff. (And by the way, I know he'll catch a lot of crap for the pick, most of it justified probably, but he's an awesome guy.)

Terry Star21

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 6:57 p.m.

He'll look like one September 1 evening !


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:07 p.m.

How do we find out who voted us number 1?


Sun, Aug 19, 2012 : 1:55 a.m.

I would like to publicly admit that I was totally lame in skimming the article and posting too fast... sorry!


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:36 p.m.

I think the same guy picked Bama 10th behind UGA, South Carolina, Arkansas and etc. Michigan fan maybe?


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:17 p.m.



Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:14 p.m.

one way would be to read the article.

Terry Star21

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:11 p.m.

"What was surprising: Michigan picked up one first-place vote from the Champaign News-Gazette's Bob Asmussen, who covers Illinois".

Terry Star21

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:05 p.m.

Michigan, more than likely will be ranked # 1 or in worst cases #2 after a defeat of alabama September 1st. If like in 1997, they can hold that all season and become National Champion again - that final ranking is all that matters. Therefore, as good as #8 looks right now, it looks woeful in due respect. The Big Ten is much better than the SEC, Michigan has a chance to run the table (like 97' of course) but it won't be easy. Every team they play, and their fans will be vamped up higher than anyone could conceive (like a teen finishing his sixth energy drink of the day), so in essence like playing a Top Ten team every week. Everyone wants to beat Michigan, but their fresh out of luck this year. MgoBlueForTiM....take the 8th, and move it to #1.


Sun, Aug 19, 2012 : 1:45 a.m.

be interesting to know how you judge that statement ("bigteeny is much better than the SEC)? uh...national championships? hmmm...nah, can't be that, cause SEC is way ahead there. hmmmm...oh, I get it...yes, the bigteeny is much better than the guys have WAY more bigteeny championships than the SEC.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:34 p.m.

"The Big Ten is much better than the SEC" Lol, what? Hahahahaha. You are too funny.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:04 p.m.

This is what happens when you when your Division, the Big Ten Championship Game and the Rose Bowl! "Michigan is the highest-rated Big Ten team in the initial poll,"


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:01 p.m.

I'll wait until AFTER the Alabama game to see what kind of season Michigan can look forward too. All this preseason stuff is so much BS. Michigan has a QB who has problems with consistency, and accuracy. And a defense that is questionable.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:31 p.m.

Alabama will expose Michigan's weaknesses. If they can correct them and move forward they'll be fine, if not then it's going to be a long season.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 5:31 p.m.

I would venture to say that a loss to Alabama means little in terms of the rest of the season for UM. Other than meaning no National Championship, which is a long shot anyway, the team could still run the table if they lose to Alabama - especially since Alabama is a much better team than any other team UM will face going forward. A win against Alabama, however, means everything - for that very same reason.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:06 p.m.

I was going to hold my breath until after Notre Dame. But, I think we'll surprise Alabama. We've done our time. It's our turn for something good.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 3:50 p.m.

Before the onslaught of messages claiming that UM is ranked to high comes flooding in, let's take a reasonable look at the rankings issue. First, the rankings are based on a number of factors such as returning personnel, coaching, past performance, etc. Based on these and other criteria, Michigan is likely properly rated. Second, it's a preseason poll, so it means very little because ultimately games are decided on the field. Third, having said that, a high ranking (at least in the USA Today/Coaches Poll) means that Michigan has a better chance of playing in a BCS bowl game (excluding the Rose Bowl). The SEC starts out with many teams ranked very high so they do not fall as low when they lose. As a result, the chances of a SEC team making it to a BCS bowl or other highly rated, but lesser, bowl is greatly heightened. Those of you who prefer that Michigan be ranked lower so that expectations are lowered apparently fail to understand that the SEC school's opportunities to play in highly rated bowls often stem from their high early preseason rankings.


Sun, Aug 19, 2012 : 2:58 a.m.

SEC Fan, we'll see how it all shakes out. I heard the same predictions last year from Michigan haters. By the way, must be nice to be a fan of an entire conference instead of settling on one team.


Sun, Aug 19, 2012 : 1:43 a.m.

that's some "thinking"... maybe the SEC starts out with many teams ranked very high is because we beat everyone else, year in and year out! ummy will be 9-3 at best, but more likely 8-4. then we'll hear all the whining and excuses...and how, "we'll be # 1 next year"...just like we've hear for the past 60 years.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:28 p.m.

High rankings stem from beating the crap out of tough teams and not losing to also ran teams. Try winning and see where you get ranked. You'd expect more from a national program like UM than some Boise State propaganda.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:09 p.m.

You're right about the early rankings paving the way for higher BCS placement later. Michigan does have a good deal of experience in places but I'm embarrassingly concerned with the level of talent, experience and depth on the lines, where we hardly had enough bodies to field two sides for a "Spring Game". And a couple of the youngsters have been injured, so we're really thin up front. If there's an up side to that, the biggest physical test for the lines will likely be the first game, probably no other teams will match Bama's physicality.

Chad Williams

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:08 p.m.

It also keeps them in range for the title game if everyone has one lost. Although its not good to lose if your a top ten team with a schedule like Michigan September 2ns1st is a lot better than losing in october or november.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 3:36 p.m.

The ranking matters very little to me since it is preseason. But how we play on the field is all that matters, so Let's Go Big Blue!!!!

Chad Williams

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 3:16 p.m.

I think these rankings are pretty accurate. Michigan has a 3rd starting quarterback and though some holes on the o line those guys have seen the field enough to get their feet eet. Wr may not be big but they have seen experience as well. Rb position is about 3accepting players deep. The defense too some losses on the D line and but got some guys who seen action as well. The back 7 should be able to make up gor the d line. Overall rankings arent always true. The difference for michigan this year is their is no cupcakes to begin the season so you will find out about both bama and Michigan. Bama has too much team speed and depth for Michigan. We seen it before. All michigan fans can pull out their hat is bowl wins vs. 3 and fourth place sec teams. The outback bowl and capital one bowl does not match the top teams from each rather the 3rd and4th place teams. Bragging about winning those bowls is Sparty stuff. How about those Rose bowls? Bcs championship games win those they say your the best. Until be like the sec and prove it on the field. History and tradition wins recognition not championships.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 7:24 p.m.

Good assessment Chad! I think Bama starts fast and does very well in these opening games.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:16 p.m.

Let's see... UM beat Bama in 2000 with some relative unknown, at that time, named Tom Brady (name probably rings a bell). They've been to the Rose Bowl against -very- talented USC teams, one that went on to win the NC the following year and the other were very motivated while the UM team was very depressed for being bypassed for the NC game because of some bias against rematches that apparently people forgot to remember last year (LSU had no business being on the field with Bama, their first matchup was an LSU win only because Bama couldn't kick field goals or catch passes to save their life). Oh, let us not forget the MI team that hung with Vince and the Longhorns and had a legitimate shot to win the game. All of this is -recent- history.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:14 p.m.

Normally people shoudn't nitpick about spelling or a left out letter in these informal blog comments, but, wow.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 4:05 p.m.

I remember Michigan playing Alamaba and winning in the Orange Bowl. Sure, it was 12 years ago, but I remember it.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 3:22 p.m.

Wow, the combination of content and spelling issues make this very confusing all the way through.


Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 3:05 p.m.

This ranking is mostly based off their 11-2 season and the number of returning starters. However, UM has a tougher schedule this season with a few of the tough games on the road. My preference would have been for a lower pre-season ranking and for the team to earn their way up the rankings by beating higher-ranked teams on the field but I'll still take #8. #GOBLUE.

Chad Williams

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 3:24 p.m.

Being ranked higher in the beginning still keeps them in range for the title game a good showing against bama. A win if course automatic top 5. Oregon lost the first game last year and was positioned to play lsu again if not for losing to usc. This is a good thing.

Theo's Brother

Sat, Aug 18, 2012 : 3:05 p.m.

We're 8th in both preseason polls Though our DLine has a few holes We'll play for Hoke We will not choke While he will lead to major bowls. - Theo's Ecstatic Brother '12 Let's play up to that ranking. 2 more weeks! GO BLUE!