Yes, Western Michigan is from the MAC. Yes, Western Michigan has a 30,000 seat stadium. But they are not necessarily a crappy program. WMU ranks 48th all time in winning percentage. And while that is nearly the textbook definition of middle of the pack, let me throw a few teams at you that they rank above...
And ya, they've padded their record in a mid-major, but they also beat Illinois last year in Detroit. And they are undefeated (2-0) against Iowa, knocking them off in 2007 and 2000. They have four all-time wins against the Big Ten, and three of those wins have occurred this decade. That puts them at 3-8 in their last 11 against Big Ten opponents, yet 2-2 against Big Ten competition under their current coach, Bill Cubit. In short, they are not coming here to lay down. They are not here for the half-million dollars we paid them to travel 100 miles. They are here to win. They are here to knock off a Wolverine team that, while wounded, still provides the opportunity for a signature victory for an upstart program.
Further proving that the Broncos are peaking...with aspect to overall history...is that they are a program that has only been to 4 bowl games in their 104 year history, and two of those have come in the last two seasons. That makes WMU's bowl streak longer than ours. Ugh.
The Broncos broke or tied several records last year, including wins, touchdowns, pass completions, and passing yards. I'm thinking they will be testing our young secondary. I'm also thinking that if Michigan's offense has their shit together, the OVER will be a pretty solid bet.
Rich Rodriguez is no stranger to the Broncos, as his Mountaineers hosted WMU back on September 1, 2007. West Virginia, led by 4 Slaton TDs, routed the Broncos 62-24.
Michigan is 4-0 all time against Western, including victories of 35-13 and 38-21 in 2002 and 2001 respectively.
Western Michigan hasn't won an opener against a Division 1-A opponent since 1998.
Our tailgate leader, the Godfather, attended Western Michigan. Other famous alumni include John Saunders, Tim Allen, Bill Lajoie (Detroit Tiger's GM in 1984) and Stephen Lynch.
Western Michigan is the home to the International Congress on Medieval Studies, with means they play a lot of LAIRE.
Western Michigan will also face Indiana and Michigan State this season.
A cubit is a unit of measurement found in Egyptian history and in the Bible. It is also Western Michigan's Football coach's last name. It is said to equal twelve palms, or about 45 centimeters. You are all now smarter.
#1: Bring Something. I don't care if it's a steaming bowl of poop, although bonus points go to those who surprise us with unique cuisine, unique drinks, unique outfits, unique decorations, or unique personalities. Bringing something is your pass to enjoy everything we have to offer at the tailgate.#2: Eat Something.
Dual reasons for this. First, we've got too much food, I promise. Just stay out of Godmother's cheesy potatoes. Second, you'll need something of substance in your gullet if you want to follow tip #3
#3: Drink Something. The tailgate is BYOB, though occasionally a specialty drink makes it's way onto the menu for all to enjoy. Bring a giant mug and fill it with a cocktail of your choosing. Bring a cooler of beer and empty it into your belly before kickoff. Take a tug on the bowl of Yucca. When it gets cold, sip a mug of spiked coffee. In short, get drunk, because you're a lot cooler when you're drunk. And let's not forget, the best tailgating stories always seem to include (insert person here) had a lot to drink, and then he/she fell down (into the bushes / on the stadium steps / into that girl's chest). Later (he / she) groped the (daughter / son) of (insert former tailgater here). We found (him / her) passed out (on the grass outside the stadium / in their car / under their car).
#4: Hug the Godfather. Why? Because we said so. Especially if you have no idea who he is. Because the Godfather loves to get himself some "strange." Even better, if you liked it, you can do it again the following week because the Godfather never remembers you the first time.
#5: Respect the Hall. The members of the UMTailgate.com Hall of Fame. Recognize them, respect them, honor them. Don't know who they are? Check the flag. We've got people here that have not missed a home or away game this century...seriously.
#6: Learn to Love. Respect all of the tailgaters, even those from the opposing team that are visiting us and wallowing in our dynasty and tradition. This applies to everyone except...
#7: Learn to Hate: Michigan State and Ohio State. Don't mistakenly wear their T-shirts, their hats, and in most cases, their colors. This applies to tailgating and gamedays only...however, big bonus points if you apply this rule in your daily life, like me.
#8: Go to the Game. And try to make it there before kickoff.
#9: Go to an Away Game. Ya, we tailgate there too. Some long drives are in store for this season, but there's nothing like Saturday Night Football on the road, so quit being a candy ass and put on a white jersey.
#10: Ask Goody To Show You His Tattoos. It's not imperative for your enjoyment, but it makes me laugh.
#11: Follow the Theme. Yes, each tailgate has a theme, and the theme is posted with each game on the season schedule.
September 5th, Western Michigan, 3:30PM, Boats and Ho's and The Catalina Wine Mixer
- Are you ready to snap some necks and cash some checks? Good. This is the place to do it. This nautically themed tailgate will christen our new spot. We recommend donning sailor gear, and it couldn't be more appropriate as Ohio State takes on Navy that day. Food will be somewhat seafood based, with a lot of appetizers and finger foods...like at a wine mixer...get it? And wine. Somebody should bring some wine. It would also be advantageous to watch the movie Step Brothers before you come.
September 12th, Notre Dame, 3:30PM,The Luau
- The Luau is a theme favorite that sat out a season due to some issues with the Mountaineers Leis, pineapples, fruity drinks, Hawaiian shirts, and all the pig you can eat.
September 19th, Eastern Michigan, Noon,Far-Eastern
- Our foreign exchange tailgater and official tailgate mascot will feel right at home for this Asian themed tailgate. Egg rolls, fried rice, stir fry and the like will be on the menu. And somebody should get some of those Chinese lanterns to hang all over the tents.
September 25th, Indiana, Noon,Mardi Gras
- Wow, a tough month of tailgating ends with a bang as the Mardi Gras theme adorns Michigan's Homecoming. I'm expecting beads, boobs, and cajun catfish.
October 17th, Delaware State, TBD,The Urban
- Soul food, rap, 40-ounce beers, and the worst game we've ever scheduled.
October 24th, Penn State, TBD,Old School
- Bring your high school yearbook for this impromptu reunion. Wear clothes from your high school era, and expect banquet hall style fare.
November 7th, Purdue, TBD,The Lumberjack
- I dream of this being an unlikely 3:30pm November kick because it's got all day cooking written all over it. Likely fried turkeys at this one if time allows. Otherwise, remember to wear your overalls.
November 21st, Ohio State, TBD,Soups, Stews and Chili
- Nothing like a hot bucket of soup on a cold fall day. I'd tell you what to wear, but you will probably have a heavy coat on over it, so it won't matter.