Michigan football has a rich history of beating the hell out of just about everyone. They have compiled 11 national championships, 42 conference championships, 3 Heisman Trophy winners, and 910 victories, good for first place all time. (Team with second most wins all time: Yale. Weird right?) Lately though, it’s the basketball team who has been making noise. Beilein’s crew was a Jordan Morgan put-back away from winning 3 straight conference titles. Trey Burke brought home Big Ten and National Player of the Year honors last season and Sophomore Nik Stauskas achieved Big Ten Player of the Year status this year. The Wolverines basketball team has routinely shown that they are at the top of the Big Ten while the football squad hasn’t won a conference title since 2004. That begs the question:
Is Michigan turning into a basketball school? (Not technically a what-if question, but whatever.)
Now most schools usually have the distinction of being either a football school (Alabama) or a basketball school (Duke). Some schools even have the distinction of being neither (we’re looking at you Northwestern), but are there many schools that are truly on equal footing in both sports? Is that possibly where Michigan is headed? When looking at the final rankings from this past football season and crossing them with the current top-25 basketball rankings, there are only four teams that appear in both: Michigan State, Oklahoma, Ohio State, and Wisconsin. Out of those four, Wisconsin is the only team that could possibly be regarded as being a “both” school. Oklahoma and Ohio State will always be football schools while Michigan State, albeit making great strides on the football field, is still considered a basketball school. So it seems unlikely that Michigan will be able to be a true power in both sports, as no team has truly been able to sustain greatness in both sports (although the 2009 Florida Gators won championships in both football and basketball).
So what will it be? Is Michigan turning into a basketball school or will they forever be known for their football program? Can they be one of the rare programs that have been able to have success in both? Before we get to the poll let’s take a look at the results of last week’s poll question: Would a two quarterback system have worked when Denard Robinson and Devin Gardner were both at Michigan?
40%: Maybe, maybe not. Who cares?
23%: It would have greatly improved Michigan’s offense
23%: Probably would not have been worth the trouble
15%: YOU MAY HAVE JUST REVOLUTIONIZED FOOTBALL
Michigan basketball is poised to make another run in the NCAA tournament while the football team is struggling to keep their head above water. Is it time to start thinking of Michigan of a basketball school? Or will football always be king for the maize and blue? Cast your vote down below and be sure to follow me on twitter @gbMWint