Who Has The Most Successful Football Program In Michigan? It’s Not Who You Think
The Green/Blue divide in Michigan has been shattered by the little program that could just down the road in Allendale.
The web site Reviews.org put together a map to feature the most successful college football program in every state. And it revealed something I didn't realize, after last season's 12-1 run to the NCAA Division II playoffs, Grand Valley State has edged out the University of Michigan as the most winningest program in our state.
Using winning percentage rather than total wins, GVSU edges out UM by a scant .006 percentage points (.736 - .730) to earn the title. Michigan, of course, is the winningest program in the nation in terms of total wins with 935 wins.
The Lakers, who have won four Division II playoff championships, have the second highest winning percentage in the country of all colleges, regardless of division.
After GVSU and Michigan, Michigan State is third with a winning percentage of .599, and then comes Central Michigan at .597 and Albion rounds out the top five at .595.
Just so you know, Finlandia University (formerly Suomi College), a Division III school located in Houghton, is the least successful program in the state with a winning percentage of just .222. But give the Lions a break, they've only been playing for two seasons.
Some other observations from the Reviews.org map:
- It’s fun to cheer for the University of Oregon because they win a lot. Especially in the last 15 years. But Oregonians who want to avoid heartbreak in the long term should look to Linfield College, an Oregon team with a much better all-time win percentage than the Ducks.
- Everything’s bigger in Texas, including the pool of schools competing for best-in-state. The shocking winner: The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor, which has played 234 games of Division III football and won 84% of them. That’s easily the best win percentage in the whole country. Go, Crusaders!
- Ivy League schools are good at more than just academics; they take the #1 spot in four east coast states: Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and New Jersey.
- 16 of the #1 teams wear red. Coincidence? Of course not. That's my high school team's colors.