The swell of college football preseason polls is in full force and while preseason rankings mean nothing, they do get you excited for the fall.
According to a cumulative ranking compiled by 247Sports, the Michigan Wolverines are the second-best team in the country entering the 2023 season.
“Ranked no lower than No. 3 on any of these chosen preseason polls, the Wolverines are the favorite to win their third consecutive Big Ten Championship this season and get back to the College Football Playoff. Jim Harbaugh has lost his last six bowl games at Michigan, so that’s a statistic that needs to change. He’s expecting this 2023 team to be his strongest considering Blake Corum and Donovan Edwards return in the backfield along with potential All-Big Ten signal caller J.J. McCarthy.”
The rankings were a combination of preseason polls across various websites that were assigned values with a numerical system. This approach provides a more balanced view of what the collective media thinks about the current college football landscape.
Michigan was one of four Big Ten teams ranked, and one of three Big Ten East teams ranked inside the top five. Ohio State came in at No. 3, Penn State checked in at No. 4, and the Wisconsin Badgers were tied for No. 21 with the UCLA Bruins.
The top 10:
- Ohio State
- Penn State
- Florida State
- TIED Tennessee/Washington
This preseason ranking would be the highest for the Wolverines since 2007, which inevitably comes with a massive weight of expectations. Of the top four teams ranked, Michigan is the only school without a national championship in the last 10 years and will need to take that next step in the postseason if it wants to change this.
Michigan has shown the propensity to withstand the Big Ten schedule and a less-than-difficult non-conference schedule the last two years. But it remains to be seen if the Wolverines can win not two, but even one College Football Playoff game.
In 2021 and 2022, the Wolverines were eliminated in the CFP semifinal games by Georgia and TCU, respectively, without a chance to even play for the title. With the talent and experience on the roster, this season feels like the best opportunity for Michigan to finally get over the hump.
When will the adversity hit? How will the team respond? Is Team 144 the best Michigan team on paper in over 15 years?
Only 165 days until East Carolina.