The Wolverine

August 2013

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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  from our readers Derrick Rose and LeBron James have shoes named after them, so why shouldn't the winningest college football program in the nation have their own series of football cleats (do I hear someone singing "leaders and best" in the background)? Lou Hoekstra Kalamazoo, Mich. Falk will no doubt read this, Lou, and begin dreaming of his own athletic apparel lines. For the time being, though, money talks, and the good folks from adidas are paying plenty to outfit your favorite crew. Time To Talk Schedules Dear The Wolverine: Other than 1984 when Illinois went 9-0 in Big Ten play, the conference has not played a full roundrobin schedule in football. In the days of the "Big Two and Little Eight," the teams that were fortunate enough to not have to play both Michigan and Ohio State in the same year had a definite edge in both the conference standings and overall bowl prospects. When Penn State joined the conference in 1993, they had to play both powerhouses for several consecutive years. A Nebraska fan I am not, but I sympathized with the "Big Red" when I saw their initial Big Ten schedule. Besides Michigan, MSU and a good Northwestern team, they drew Ohio State, Penn State and Wisconsin from the other division. Now we have two new teams who will begin conference play next year. Playing in the new East division, both new teams must face Ohio State, Penn State, Michigan and MSU. But Rutgers must also face Nebraska and Wisconsin from the West division, while Maryland draws Wisconsin but mercifully avoids playing Nebraska. This hardly seems like random scheduling by whoever draws up the schedule. Is there some sort of "rite of passage" that has to be endured by new teams when they enter the Big Ten? When the conference expands to 16 teams, (which I believe is inevitable) perhaps we should require that the newbies scrimmage the defending Super Bowl champs. Or maybe we could make them play my beloved, but long-suffering, Lions. No wait, that won't work — the object is to provide them with a challenge. Harvey Dasho Walnut Creek, Calif. Well noted, Harvey. We do like the idea of the newcomers getting the toughest Big Ten experience possible to start out. It lets them know what they're in for on a regular basis.   Be Heard! Send your letters to: Wolverine Letters • P.O. Box 1304 Ann Arbor, MI 48106 Or e-mail: Letters may be edited for clarity or length.

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