Michigan Makes the Preseason Top 25 Voters Look Silly

Barry Leonard@@barryleonardjrAnalyst IIISeptember 2, 2012

ARLINGTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 01:  The Alabama defense swarms Denard Robinson #16 of Michigan during the  third quarter of the game at Cowboys Stadium on September 1, 2012 in Arlington, Texas. Alabama defeated Michigan 41-14.  (Photo by Leon Halip/Getty Images)
Leon Halip/Getty Images

The most anticipated college football game of Week 1 proved to be a disappointment. On paper the game looked like a classic. The problem was that Michigan had no business being ranked in the Top 25 this season. The 41-14 score proves that statement.

When the No. 8 Wolverines took the field against No. 3 Alabama, it was clear from the start that these two teams did not belong on the same field. Michigan was outplayed in every aspect of the game. The speed and size of Alabama, especially on the offensive line, proved to be too much for Michigan to handle.

The Tide dominated the stats sheet. They outgained the Wolverines 431-269. The rushing yards were 232-69, in favor of Alabama. The vaunted Alabama defense forced three Michigan interceptions and controlled Denard Robinson for most of the game.

A true No. 3 vs. No. 8 matchup should give fans a great game. Not a blow out that could have been turned off by halftime. Danny Sheridan, in USA Today, had Alabama as a 13.5 favorite heading into the game. One would not think that a matchup of two top 10 teams would have that large of a spread.

A game like this helps to prove how invalid the Preseason Top 25 poll can be. Voters seem to rely on the success of the previous year, rather than looking ahead to the new season. The name on the jersey also has a lot to do with where teams fall in the rankings.

The hype surrounding Denard Robinson leading into this year probably helped Michigan get a boost in the polls. However, their performance on Saturday night, the fact that they really didn't even show up, proves that the No. 8 ranking was a fluke.

Could Michigan finish in the top 25 by season's end?

Absolutely.

Did they belong in the top 10 to start this year?

I think Saturday night's performance answers that question.

Hopefully, games like this will make the voters pay more attention when making their rankings in the preseason.