Breaking down each ranked opponent for Wolverines


(Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Michigan football’s strength of schedule has exploded since the AP Poll rankings were published. Here are each of those opponents, their ranking, and how the Wolverines can beat them.

The Associated Press Poll began on October 19th, 1936, and Minnesota held the top honor of being ranked number one. Michigan football didn’t make the list.

While they didn’t reach the ranking on day one, UM sits behind only Ohio State for most appearances ranked in the top 25, hitting the mark on 73.8% of the 1,152 total polls. Behind Michigan are Oklahoma, Notre Dame, and Alabama bringing in the top five.

Coming in second is an admirable accomplishment but not for UM fans, alumni, or even those on the team.

“We’ve had some finishes in my time here that you’d like to change, especially with bowl games and the Ohio State games,” said senior guard Ben Bredeson.  “This team is a lot more focused, a lot more driven towards the common goal of just getting better every single day and not looking too far ahead.”

The alumni – while supportive – were disappointed with the second-place Big Ten East finish after a disastrous performance against the southern rival.

“That was nasty.” Legendary football player and Alum, Charles Woodson said. “That was disappointing for somebody that’s been in the program and for somebody that’s a fan of Michigan football, for all of our alumni, for all of the former players, it was embarrassing.”

It was disappointing and the team knows what they need to change to turn the corner and reach Indy for the first time and secure the Big Ten Championship. To get there, they must first defeat each of the following ranked opponents on their schedule. And there is no shortage of ranked AP Poll opponents this season.

Without further ado, here are all six of Michigan’s ranked opponents.

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