Michigan Wolverines Will Make The Four-Team Playoff in January


It was Desmond Howard, former University of Michigan football player and ESPN college football expert, who first surprised everyone by ranking his alma mater sixth overall in the country, despite the Wolverines not appearing in the preseason top 25 by the Associated Press or the Coaches Poll.

Whether it was a bold prediction or just complete bias from the former Heisman trophy winner, it surely had many question Howard as to what he was thinking when he published his early rankings.

But now another college football analyst is hopping on the Michigan bandwagon as he’s predicted the program to wind up in the inaugural playoff championship in mid-January.

Scott Dochterman of the Cedar Rapids Gazette has the Wolverines finishing fourth in the country, where they’ll meet the No. 1 team in the nation at the Rose Bowl for the semifinals.

Would anyone like to take a guess as to who Michigan will play in Pasadena, California?

Alabama? Nope. Oklahoma? Nope. Florida State? Nope. Auburn? Nope.

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It’s the UCLA Bruins.

Dochterman does not have the outcome of this game listed in his column, but what I can garner from the piece is that Michigan will win the Big Ten title, their first since 2004, against the Iowa Hawkeyes, who he has coming out victorious from the West division.

I’ll admit that I first chuckled to myself when I first read his article, considering that the Michigan Wolverines will have to go through Big Ten powerhouses Michigan State and Ohio State in the East division in order to even appear in the championship game. But the longer I thought about, the easier it was for me to come up with the assumption that U-M has a decent chance to reign supreme in the conference.

The team’s first test of the season will come week two when they head down to South Bend to square off against Notre Dame on Sept. 6. If they can come out on top, the Wolverines will most likely be undefeated when they travel to East Lansing during week nine.

It’s reasonable to predict that Michigan will finish this season with at least nine wins, with the possibility of going undefeated if they can squeak past the Spartans and Buckeyes on the road.

The Wolverines haven’t hoisted a Big Ten title while under the reins of head coach Brady Hoke, but is this the year that they finally get over the hump? Or is it too early to tell how the season is going to ride out?