Michigan wasn’t given much of a chance by the nation Saturday as they went into their Saturday date with No. 2 Ohio State ranked fifth in the College Football Playoff rankings but hadn’t beaten their rival since 2011.
10-years later that streak has finally ended for the Wolverines as they upset Ohio State to secure their first ever trip to the Big Ten Championship game in Indianapolis. A win there over Iowa or Wisconsin will then mean Michigan will make their first trip to the College Football Playoff (CFP).
Here at Fighting Irish Wire we’re always trying to figure out how things impact Notre Dame. In this case how are Notre Dame’s playoff odds affected by Michigan’s victory?
According to FiveThirtyEight, Notre Dame’s chances of making the CFP take a minimal hit as they drop from 31% to 30% with the Michigan win. I don’t really get how they go down, unless Ohio State gets love from the committee they don’t deserve with two losses.
Michigan will be the obvious favorite in the Big Ten Championship next weekend regardless of who they play (Wisconsin clinches a berth with win over Minnesota, Iowa clinches berth if Wisconsin loses). However, the matchup seems to lend itself better to both Wisconsin and Iowa’s chances with it being a Michigan team that doesn’t light up the scoreboard quite like Ohio State’s can do.
Pretty simply, the spread in next week’s Big Ten championship will be a smaller number than if Ohio State was playing. That’s not to take anything away from Michigan whatsoever, just with an offense that wasn’t viewed as “as sexy” as Ohio State’s, that’s a fact.
That said, I’ll still pick Michigan to come out of that as the victor, but perhaps it’ll be a tougher test than the first meeting between the two was.
Other than that, Ohio State having two losses eliminates them from the CFP, just like a second loss by Alabama SHOULD do to the Tide.
So in short, Michigan’s win helps Notre Dame in the fact that maybe the Big Ten is now ever-so-slightly more winnable for Wisconsin than it would be if they played Ohio State?
It’s not a bad thing, whatever the case.
So congrats to Michigan fans that have sat through a lot of torcher with Ohio State the last couple decades. That’s a win worth celebrating for days.
Heck, celebrate it for the next week straight and come out flat in Indianapolis?