Add Kansas to the Schedule

Dylan Burkhardt

Michigan will head to Lawrence to take on the loaded Kansas Jayhawks on December 19th. Kansas is easily one of the top three teams in the country next year on paper and a road game in Lawrence will be no easy task. Last year’s stars Sherron Collins and Cole Aldrich both decided to return to school. Kansas also brings in a trio of top 35 recruits in Xavier Henry (his brother also transferred and will be eligible), Elijah Johnson, and Thomas Robinson to go along with their already talented squad.

This is the big game I was hinting at for the last few weeks. I thought it was going to be a home game but I also thought that Michigan would be playing at Duke, not hosting UConn. Personally, I love the move. There is no reason for this team to schedule a bunch of cupcakes.

To summarize, this is what Michigan’s schedule looks like right now:

  • Nov 26,27, and 29th – 2009 Old Spice Classic featuring Alabama, Baylor, Creighton, Iona, Marquette, Michigan, Xavier, and Florida State
  • December 9th – at Utah
  • December 2nd – vs. Boston College (B10/ACC Challenge)
  • December 19th – at Kansas
  • Home game vs. UConn at Crisler Arena
  • Likely: Oakland, EMU

That’s a pretty strong schedule when all things are considered. This schedule should probably yield 4 or 5 top 50 games in the out of conference season alone. Even with a loss, this game will have little to no negative effect on Michigan’s RPI. Hopefully there are a few less cupcakes in the 200+ RPI range because as we learned last year, those can be a killer.

*The future schedule page has also been updated.

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  • ZRL

    So I’m guessing there will be a return game at Crisler the following year? I’m actually kinda happy that the Duke game is off the schedule and we are scheduling other elite schools instead. The problem with the football schedule is that we keep scheduling Notre Dame so we very rarely get to see a different elite team come to the Big House.

  • Yup, I’m under the impression that this is a home-and-home.

  • I’ve just gotta say it… The 5 months ’til November feel like ages right now. I’m already excited.

  • Kevin

    Good call Dylan! Love the move, if there’s any year to do this, this would be the year.

  • Mmccrae

    Say yes for strength of schedule. This could also help in recruiting guys who are looking at the big twelve (yes you ray mccallum) I think his is a brilliant move!

  • Eric

    UCONN is not a home game this year. If you read the ESPN article from a year ago it says we skip this year and play UCONN at home during the 2010-2011, sorry to disappoint. Go blue.

  • Beast1530

    This is going to be a tough, tough non-conference schedule. The Big Ten is getting better and it should be better overall.

  • David

    Eric, that was the case, yes, but I think it’s changed since then.

  • Tom Too

    Right up the road from me….I’ll be there. Shouldn’t be a real tough ticket with the kids out of town.

  • Benjamin

    Good point Tom Too. This is during winter break and the crowd size should be smaller…Beilein…what a genius.

    I love this move…can’t wait November!

  • Eric: That was the situation, I was under the impression of the same thing until a week ago. But things have been shuffled around.

  • El Capitan

    I also thought they were gonna be coming to Ann Arbor this year, but as long we get to play ’em, I’m happy. They are probably gonna be ranked number 1 when we’re there…

    Time to shock the world again!

  • Justin C

    We’ll be playing a lot of 1-3-1 in this game. We really don’t have anyone who can check Collins. Don’t you all wish we had CJ Lee for one more season?

  • For those that were wondering… Yes Kansas will come to Ann Arbor the year after…

  • Matt

    Is it possible that our schedule strength this year will be even higher then it was last year? Most of the teams at the Old Spice Classic aren’t a joke. Teams like Marquette, Baylor, Alabama, Xavier and Florida State. I’m just eager to see who we play in the first round of that tourney. Then we got Kansas and Utah away… UConn and Boston College at home… This season will definitley be a test.

    I’m glad that we aren’t playing a lot of cup cake games. Schedule strength definitely means a lot to the committee. GO BLUE

  • Beast1530

    Matt, since Michigan won’t(and shouldn’t) face any teams that has an RPI ranking higher than 200. Their RPI as well as SOS will be greatly enchanced IMO.

  • Redwings8831

    Does anyone have a possible date for the UConn home game? I doubt it will be before the Orlando tournament in November. I’m thinking either the weekend after the B10/ACC challenge (like Duke this year), during winter break (like the past Georgetown and UCLA – hopefully not) or in February (like this year’s game).

  • jgunnip

    from that KU article,

    ““It will test us,” Keating said. “Michigan will be one of the top two or three teams in the Big Ten — a top 10-15 team overall. Cal will probably be picked to win the Pac-10 and be a top 10 team. Tennessee will be good again. Temple is always strong in their league (Atlantic 10).”

    heh, top 10-15? whoa there.

  • Andy

    That article also said UM is 5-0 all time vs Kansas. I did not know that.

  • Mitchigan

    Below is the John Beilein podcast from his talk with Sam Webb and Andy Evans on WTKA radio this morning.

  • Bluebufoon

    FYI, Coach Beilein wouldn’t be scheduling like this unless he thought this team could handle it. I believe Michigan will be a top 10 to top 15 team this year and I think Coach Beilein believes the same thing.

    Go Blue !!!

  • Kenny

    Agree with Bluebufoon. With two star players and a solid group of role players, next season’s team is very close to the best team Beilein ever coached.

  • Jim

    I just really want to thank you dylan. I check site every day and each new post just gets me more and more excited for the season! The insights are amazing, the recruiting updates awesome, and the clips of this season best moments were off the charts… I lose it everytime i see that backdoor cut! it really made me believe:-) Awesome! Go BLUE!!!

  • Tom Too

    This team could end up being JB’s best team ever. COULD. His elite 8 team back in 2005, probably rates as his best team ever to date: Pittsnogle, Gansey, Young, Beilein, Herbert (sp?). I think Manny and Peedi have way more talent than Pittsnogle and Gansey. That 2005 team had something special that you couldn’t put your finger on….like most special teams. That is the X factor that I hope we get, or continue to craft, next year. It could be an elite 8 run in March 2010.

  • I feel like you could say the Sweet16 team was his “best”. It was essentially the same team as the Elite 8 team and they played a number of quality opponents.

    They only made the sweet 16 b/c as you said, they were missing that special X factor.

    A lot is going to hinge on how ready Darius Morris is to play on both sides of the ball IMO.

  • Tom Too

    There are two X factors then….you are correct.

  • Frank

    The Old Spice Classic, BigTen ACC Challenge, @ Kansas, @ Utah, UConn, and an ultra-stacked Big Ten schedule? We could end up playing the #1 team in the country twice next season.

    I’m blown away, Beilein has made building a program look effortless compared to Amaker. He’s acting like he has no intention of taking a back seat to Izzo.

  • redwings8831

    The UConn game at Crisler Arena will be on Sunday, January 17th.

  • Matt

    Well, they just posted an update on
    Looks like we’ll be playing UConn during the Big Ten schedule on Sunday January 17th. I can’t wait for the season to start especially with all these big matchups.

  • Matt

    redwings, I’m an idiot. I guess I should start reading other people’s comments before I post mine. I’m just glad that more people are upbeat about Michigan Basketball these days.