Uneventfully, save for a certain mustachioed coach playing a pesky Mountain West test named Utah (trust us, Mr. Wannstedt, we know Utah can be a pain), the NCAA season kicked off last night with the usual suspects dominating in their respective opening games. Now that the appetizers areout of the way, we're ready to dig in to the main course on Saturday where one of the marquee matchups nationwide will be Michigan's opener against UConn. So, on this eve of football, I polled the Maize n Brew writers to give us some predictions for the season. Feel free to use these predictions against us in the future or sing our praises with them as prognosticators of the FUTURE! Also, please be so kind as to leave yours in the comments. We'll Let SCM kick off the predictions!
The 2010 Michigan Football Season According to SCM:
Overall Record: 8-4 or 9-3. I honestly would prefer to abstain from this and the next question but what the hell... I really think that 8-4 or 9-3 is within reach this season, no seriously, I do... You can have a weak secondary and still win football games. Not necessarily championships, but football games. If Michigan can just do as much as hold on to the football and not strand the defense consistently, we'll be in much better shape than last year. At OSU is going to be a ridiculous mountain to climb, but there's not really another game on the schedule that meets that definition. As always you have to take em one at a time and go from there, we will know a LOT by the end of week 2.
Wins/Losses per game: I will cheat on this and do the following:
Games I am confident about and will be highly annoyed if we drop:UConn, UMass, BGSU, Indiana, Purdue, and Illinois
Games that I think are toss-ups:At Notre Dame (2006 not-withstanding there have been WAY too many scarring experiences occur in South Bend for me to ever be "confident" about that game), Iowa at home, Michigan State at home, and at Penn State (unless Penn State's QBs morph into something capable of throwing a spiral after the sun sets I could care less about when the kickoff is).
Games that I am really concerned about:Wisconsin (only because they will run the exact same TE against our LBs play 100 times and we were completely unable to stop it last year) and obviously Ohio State.
Inanimate object most likely to meet its demise:I have no issues while attending games, watching them at home is another story. If there's an object to meet a demise it's probably most likely to be a hat or something the hat contacts. I find the hat throw and/or slam to be the go-to move, but you must always have the wherewithal to not throw the sumbitch at the TV, that's the key.
All the rest of our previews are after the JUMP!
The 2010 Michigan Football Season According to Markus
Overall Record: 8-4 (9-4 with a Bowl win. See below - ED)
Wins/Losses by Team:
at Notre Dame loss
Bowling Green win
at Indiana win
Michigan State win
at Penn State win
at Purdue win
at Ohio State loss
Wins/Losses per game: Well... I'm not a fan of the game by game but I'll list off games I think should be wins, are toss ups and games I anticipate will be losses.
Wins: UMass, Bowling Green, Indiana, Illinois, Purdue (this is close to a toss up, but I can't see Purdue winning 3 straight, I just can't. Yes, this is my own prejudice showing through, but it's my blog.).
Toss ups: UConn, Notre Dame, Michigan State, Penn State, Iowa. (Wait, how can you say PSU and Iowa are toss ups!? Here's why: Michigan almost beat Iowa last season with two freshmen quarterbacks, without it's best offensive lineman, and a defense comprised of one superstar and ten pieces of bubblegum. Iowa struggles against Michigan's spread, so I think this is a possible win. As for Penn State, I'm just not buying the Lions with a crappy, unproven quarterback. I'm also not buying that their linebacking corps will be anywhere near as effective as it was last season. You can't just replace all those upperclassmen and not have a drop off.) If Michigan wins two of these games, they're at 7 wins.
Losses: Wisconsin and Ohio State. (I'm not sold on OSU, but they're still the better program right now. Injuries and the general smiteiness of life may change how I see this, but I'm thinking it's a loss. Wisconsin? We're going to get curb stomped. Power running game against a spread defense? We're screwed.)
Defensive MVP: Mike Martin. He's just a badass and the best player on the defense. I also think he's going to end up a 2nd Team All American by year's end.
Bowl Game: Guh... A return to the Alamo Bowl. I hate writing that, but it's better than no bowl at all.
Best Tailgating Beer: I'm with Markus when it comes to beers of choice. I need me some good, cold German Bier! Due to lack of availability, it's hard for me to inhale the adequate amounts of the Paulaner Oktoberfest Marzen for proper tailgating. The next best thing, at least to me, is the Leinenkugel's Oktoberfest that is readily available in the fall. Perhaps Miller's best beer, it possess the proper pallet, heft, taste, and booze for a perfect tailgating beer.
Gameday Tradition: It depends on where I am. If I'm watching at home, Mrs. Brew and I are on the couch in our sweats by 10 EST, coffee in hand and pizza ordered. We love having a game at home just to be able to root from our couch, call over our friends, and not have to move a muscle. By Noon, well... we're drinking the Leines. Now, on the other hand, if we're at a game, we pick up a dozen donuts from the Sweetwater Donut Mill in Jackson (the greatest donuts on the planet, I kid you not, they are worth prison time), and we make it to the golf course or our other predetermined tailgate space by about 9am. Then it's breakfast and grilling while tailgating, playing bean bags, throwing the football with our friends, and blasting music out of the back of the car. However if there's one tradition I don't break, it's my t-shirt. I have my traditional blue, faded "MICHIGAN" t-shirt and my slumpbusting Block "M" blue t-shirt. This year, I'm planning on a Maize "MICHIGAN" t-shirt in an effort to change things up.
The 2010 Michigan Football Season According to Beauford:
Overall Record: 7-5
Wins/Losses by Team:
Wins: Uconn, BGSU, Umass, Indiana, Illinois, Purdue, Michigan State
Losses: Notre Dame, Iowa, Wisconsin, Penn State, Ohio State
A quick note - there are obviously degrees of certainty with the above prediction. I think that Michigan State, Iowa, Notre Dame, and Penn State are all "any given Saturday" type games, but lady luck (and the turnover gods) will have to smile on Michigan if we're going to take those games. Iowa, IMO, is the one most likely to move into the "wins" column.
Inanimate Object Most Likely To Meet Its Demise: I would say "hat" but the hat itself isn't really in danger. It's what the hat might hit. Last year, I believe, that was a candlestick we had precariously perched on our mantle. This year, who knows what it might be. I'm certainly looking forward to finding out.
[Thanks to the writers who contributed their thoughts. I certainly thought that I'd be in the mainstream at 7-5, but hey, here's hoping I'm wrong!- BB]