ESPN's Kirk Herbstreit: Michigan looks like 'a different team,' is a B1G title contender
Oh, what a difference a week makes.
Less than seven days after declaring that Purdue would knock off Michigan and then go on to fight for a Big Ten championship, ESPN analyst Kirk Herbstreit has pulled an about face.
He was wrong about Michigan, he admits, and now, he sees the Wolverines as a team that can contend for a Big Ten title.
"If you watched them play against Alabama, Air Force, Notre Dame, objectively speaking, I don't know how anybody could be really excited about what Michigan was doing in the first month of the season," Herbstreit said Tuesday during a conference call with reporters. "I don't know if they used the bye week to make adjustments and get back to letting Denard (Robinson) be Denard … if you were to look at Michigan last Saturday and compare them to the first four games that we watched them, it was a different team.
"I think Michigan, based on the way they played last week, has a shot to get to Indy (for the Big Ten Championship Game)."
Midway through Michigan's 44-13 win over Purdue, Herbstreit -- the former Ohio State quarterback -- took to Twitter to apologize for completely whiffing on his pick.
After watching the Wolverines last week, he believes Brady Hoke's squad has an entirely new confidence about them -- one he says puts the Wolverines in the mix for a Legends Division title.
"For Michigan's sake, hopefully they're able to bottle that up and play that way the rest of the year," Herbstreit said. "If they do, they're tough for anyone to beat.
"I think it's just wide open. It's much more competitive. Michigan is there, Michigan State despite sitting with a conference loss (is there), even Nebraska. … You would think those three teams have the best shot (at getting) to the Big Ten Championship Game."