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Monday, January 28, 2008

Herbstreit: Six Wins for U-M in '08

ESPN analyst (and Tosu grad) Kirk Herbstreit predicted Michigan will win six games during the 2008 college football season. On a recent appearance on your favorite radio show and mine, Colin Cowherd's The Herd, Herbstreit said Michigan's schedule and offensive holes make the upcoming season a daunting one for the Wolverines.

According to the Free Press article linked above, here is a partial transcript...

Colin Cowherd: I will say this about the Big Ten. Ohio State is going to be great next year. They're going to be out of this world. Michigan's rebuilding, Wisconsin's not good enough at quarterback to beat the Buckeyes.

Kirk Herbstreit: How many wins do you think Michigan gets in '08?

CC: Next year?

KH: Look at their schedule.

CC: I think they're probably going to get nine.

KH: Oh my gosh!

CC: Eight.

KH: You're trying to put the pressure on Rich in his first year?

CC: Pete Carroll struggled first year at USC.

KH: I think it's a six-win season for Michigan next year, I really do. I'd like to see Michigan do well, but really, if you look at the schedule, you look at the quarterback situation, you look at the offense and the fact that they lost all of those players, The Big Ten is going to go through this again next year.

Now, before Michigan fans get too pissed, I have one thing to say: Don't shoot the Buckeye messenger. Unfortunately, I think Herbie could be right.

We have no QB right now. None. And even if (big if) Michigan lands Pryor, he'll be a true freshman running a brand new offense with most of last season's offensive weapons now gone.

And what about the defense? Do we have any DBs of note?

I hope Kirk is wrong. Very wrong. But realistically, U-M fans who've been harping about Lloyd for years could be in for a rude awakening if they think Rodriguez and the spread are some college football savior. I truly believe folks are going to see just how hard it was/is to maintain a program at the "declining" level they've been bitching about for years.


whetstonebuck said...


One thing's for sure, you've got guts.

jblaze1 said...

What losses do you see? In the 12 games next year, I see
1. Wisc or Illinois
2. State of PSU
3. OSU.

Worse case are these 5 and the 6th would be ND, I guess. It is a little extreme, to say the lease that we would lose the 5 above and ND to get 6 losses.

A2saint said...

I don't think Kirk has ever gotten over this...


Feelin' Blue said...

I think that the defense will be really good. Call me crazy, but we return almost the whole team on defense. Englemon's not returning. Safety Harrison and 5-star recruit DB Donovan Warren are both really good. The whole D-line returns. Not only will they be experienced, but they will be well-coached (Scott Schafer is a really good DC) and in shape (St. Barwis).

I am just worried about the offense, but RR might be able to make due. As long as we go to a bowl game is what I say.

mdm4040 said...

Yeah guys, I would have to say that Morgan Trent and Donovan Warren are DBs of note. Both should be pushing for All-Big Ten First Team this year.

Galen said...


From a Penn State fan, why in the Hell do you think PSU will beat Michigan next year? They haven't done so in half a century it's not going to change next year either. I've already written that off as a L on PSU's schedule just like I did last year.

Scott said...

It's a bit much to say we have no QB, Threet counts.

surrounded in columbus said...

sad day when colin cowherd is more upbeat about michigan than, well, almost anyone. however, i think he's right. 8 or 9 wins is right in the strike zone.

i don't have too many illusions about us winning a lot of games next year, but 6? we play ND, Utah, and 2 MAC schools in the non conference schedule. unless weiss has suddenly learned how to coach linemen to block, we shoudl win all 4 of those.

our conference schedule includes minnesota, NU, illinois, purdue, wisco, psu, msu, & tosu. we should half of those. maybe more. don't be surprised if the losses come early & the team improves to upset a wisco or tosu @ the end of the season.

if we started carlos brown @ qb & ran the wishbone, we'd win 6 of those games.

DaBraylon17 said...

two things:

1) Isn't it funny that when OSU is in a rebuilding year, everyone claims that OSU does "not rebuild, but reload." When Michigan is in a rebuilding year, they are rebuilding and not reloading. Hilarious.

2) TresseLL took a huge underdog OSU team into Ann Arbor his first year as coach and beat the then ranked 11 Wolverines (I think) and won the game. Since it's Michigan in the same position (going into Cbus with a first year head coach), Michigan doesn't stand a chance. OSU did it with TresseLL in his first year as coach, why can't Michigan do it with RR?

Nathan said...

I wouldn't expect great things next season. Going to the spread is a pretty drastic change. Just getting the linemen down to the weight RR wants is quite the adjustment for a former pro style offense. WVU went 3-8 his first year transitioning to the spread and that was after a 7-5 season (admittedly unspectacular). Looking at UM's OOC schedule though, I don't see how you lose any of those games (unless Notre Dame has a miraculous turnaround).

Feelin' Blue said...

But Tressel didn't overhaul OSU's offensive system. RR is doing that. But then again, look at what we did in the bowl game.

The issue is that we lose the veteran backbones on offense, but I think that some of the backups are pretty good, and I hope that RR will utilize them. I especially liked Carlos Brown. It would be nice to see Antonio Bass return. Greg Mathews and Carson Butler return. The problem, of course, is at QB. Even if we get TP, he will still be a freshman, so there should be issues of inexperience. Pat White also started as a freshman though.

DC Schafer has said that he will not be using the 3-3 stack, but he should know how to defend against the spread, considering who our coach is.

Feelin' Blue said...

I am pretty worried about Utah. It's the first game and Utah will have BCS aspirations as well as inspiration from App St. Hopefully RR will not overlook them.

After that, I am mainly worried about Wisco and OSU, and ND will also be tough on the road. PSU is also tough, but they lose important players in key positions. No offense to PSU fans, but I don't think that they will be going to the top while JoePa is still there (e.g. their S&C program is also outdated). Minnesota has gotten great recruits, so they might be tough, but it doesn't look like Tim Brewster is much of a good coach. But then again, we said the same thing about Zook.

Illinois loses Mendenhall and Juice is a run-first QB. Our D should stop him. They have a good run D and we have question marks at QB. Also, we play Purdue on the road, and Joe Tiller is in his last year, so he'll want to go out with a bang.

Nathan said...

Out of curiosity, what is your OL situation for next year? Getting our fat boys to drop weight was RR's biggest problem in his first year at WVU. I think if you get TP, RR will plug him in right away, and you'll end up with a decent season. Without a mobile QB, I think it could be rough.

Der Schatten said...

Ok...Alabama fan, so no dog in this fight, but 6 games? WTF? The non-conference slate is worth four w's (assuming you don't get tripped up against the Utes). NU and Minnie (and probably Purdue) are locks. The Illini, Sparty and PSU are toss-ups, but winnable. Probably only 1 (maybe two) guaranteed L's...tO-freakin-SU and Wiscy.

Call it an 8-4 year.

Feelin' Blue said...

der schatten,

In case we lose to OSU, please explain to me how you deal with the pain of losing to Auburn 6 times in a row. It sucks.

(No, I am not making fun of you. I am being empathetic.)

Alabama, Michigan, and Georgia Tech fans should start a club. MSU fans are not welcome, especially after yesterday.

Come to think of it, it is interesting that all three programs have new coaches who fans hope will end big losing streak to their biggest rivals. The three schools also see themselves as more refined than their respective rivals. Don't Bama fans think that Auburn is for farmers and hicks?

ShelbyTwp said...

Prediction: 5-7

New systems (offense and defense), new QB, new WR's, new RB, some new OL starters, and a few key defensive losses. Could be worse (see ND circa 2007).

L Aug. 30 Utah
W Sept. 6 Miami (OH.)
L Sept. 13 at Notre Dame
L Sept. 27 Wisconsin
L Oct. 4 Illinois
Oct. 5(www.firerrod.com starts)
W Oct. 11 Toledo (hopefully)
L Oct. 18 at Penn State
W Oct. 25 Michigan State
L Nov. 1 at Purdue
W Nov. 8 at Minnesota
W Nov. 15 Northwestern
L Nov. 22 at Ohio State

Bigasshammm said...

L Aug. 30 Utah
W Sept. 6 Miami (OH.)
L Sept. 13 at Notre Dame
L Sept. 27 Wisconsin
L Oct. 4 Illinois
Oct. 5(www.firerrod.com starts)
W Oct. 11 Toledo (hopefully)
L Oct. 18 at Penn State
W Oct. 25 Michigan State
L Nov. 1 at Purdue
W Nov. 8 at Minnesota
W Nov. 15 Northwestern
L Nov. 22 at Ohio State

When did Mark May start posting on this forum?

Seriously how can you honestly think they will lose to Purdue, Penn State, and ND? Penn State cannot compete in the "new college football" as long as Joepa's the HC. It's a sad fact. Purdue can't beat a lot of MAC teams. And Nd is well ND. The Utah game will be close but I think just riding the hype of RR's first game ever and the stunner from last season the fans should pull the team through that one. They could very easily be 10-1 going into the game at Columbus. Wisconsin and Illinois being the only two possible road blocks but both teams lost key players and will be somewhat one dimensional so I think a split of those two games is very achievable.

Realistically though I will say they go 10-2 next year and they beat tO$U. Big Ten champs in RR's first year.

Breaston154LIFE said...

Usually I like Kirk Herbstreit. I think he's a bit harsh on his alma mater and but is also pretty unbiased in my opinion. But six wins is almost Mark Mayish (even though he did get the Notre Dame prediction right).

So we lose offensive lineman we'll still have Stephen Schilling, Alex Mitchell, and Justin Boren. We only lose Adam Kraus and Jake Long. Though big names, the O Line isn't a huge issue.

Shelbytwp...yes Michigan will have a new starting TB but Brown, Minor, and Grady all have either started or have had significant playing time, so RB isn't really that big of an issue either. Especially with McGuffie coming in and hopefully with the landing of 4-star Terrence Robinson (long shot).

QB and WR are the biggest holes. I've said before that the spread offense doesn't HAVE to include the option and most people know that. If we didn't get Terrelle Pryor then of course it's Steven Threet and he's not a bad quarterback.

Nathan said...

"Realistically though I will say they go 10-2 next year and they beat tO$U. Big Ten champs in RR's first year."

Someone likes the kool-aid

steve g said...


Alex Mitchell isn't coming back next season.

Thank God.

Der Schatten said...

Feelin' Blue.

Well, you got past stage one (better known as canning the coach responsible for the bulk of those losses...although it was good to see Lloyd go out -more or less- on his terms). The second step is seething, quiet anger (usually mumbling like an old school Red Sox fan, 'Wait till next year'). The last is, of course, booze. (Substitute obsessing over recruiting season if you're a teetotaler)!

Feelin' Blue said...


Key defensive losses? By that you mean no one besides Crable? Terrance Taylor, Jamison, Obi Ezeh, Graham, Harrison, Warren--they all return. Jesus, read what I wrote before. Yes, Crable will be a huge loss, the D next year will be great.

Almost our whole defense returns, just like in 2006, with Brandon Graham as the second coming of LaMarr Woodley. 2006 was Ron English's first year, and 2008 will be Scott Schafer's first year. Both are great DC's, but Schafer and RR should know how to stop the spread. Plus, everyone will be stronger and slimmer thanks to Barwis's program, just as Lloyd and his staff decided that the defensive players should shed a few pounds in 2006.

The problem is that Stripling and Szabo are gone, but I still think that we are in pretty good shape for D.

Feelin' Blue said...

I am a Red Sox fan as well, but it's kind of been a while since "wait til next year" had little meaning.

I don't want to kill my liver or brain cells anymore! Oh wait. Killing my liver. I get it now. Well, why do you think that I have the name Feelin' Blue?

Mikoyan said...

If Michigan's defense is fine next year, the Offense just has to not lose the game....

Korematsu said...

Difference between diehard SEC fans and diehard Big Ten fans:

SEC fans enter every season thinking that their team is going to win the national championship. It doesn't matter how shitty their teams are or how drastic their coaching change is.

Big Ten fans talk about how their team will be mediocre and post records detailing their teams future losses.

Further evidence why the SEC fans outpassion Big Ten fans. I'm saying that Michigan goes undefeated and wins their first NC in 11 years.

srudoff said...

Fuck You Korematsu

SEC fans are in no way more passionate than Big Ten fans - hell NASCAR fans in the south are more passionate about their sport than SEC fans - I lived in Atlanta - I've seen it. I've listened to sports talk radio in Atlanta - very rare that someone will say preseason that the Dawgs were gonna win it all, and when they did, the hosts usually had a good laugh at it.

SEC fans ARE good at jumping on the bandwagon once their team gets off to a good start, I'll give you that!

Korematsu said...

Srudoff--if you lived in Atlanta, you should know that Georgia Tech, one of UGA's RIVALS is located in Georgia.

You think a sports talk show in East Lansing, MI or in College Station, TX would endorse UM or UT going all the way?

srudoff said...

Athens is a stones throw and GT fans listen to satellite radio and don't give a shit about their football team.

go to the scout georgia board - there's a thread about 2008 expectations - about 1/3 are posting that they expect to be in the championship game. hell one even said that osu was going to play wvu in the game.

can't spin that

Korematsu said...

As opposed to how many on this thread saying that UM will make a run at the championship game?

surrounded in columbus said...

delusions don't make you a good fan. they just make you delusional.

having a realistic assessment of what your team is going to do any given season doesn't make you less of a fan. you don't cheer any less, hope an less, or hurt when they lose any less.

Korematsu said...

Funny how you can be called delusional on a thread about Michigan football, supposedly read by Michigan fans, for saying that you think Michigan will win a national championship. My bad.