CFB: All Hail, Michigan the Victors, What’s Next?

NCAA Football Sports News


  • Michigan won (and covered) in the 2024 College Football Playoff national championship with a 34-13 win over Washington in Houston.
  • It is the Wolverines first national championship since 1997.
  • The Wolverines finished 15-0 with a season marked by excellence and controversy.

It was vintage Michigan, trademark Michigan, quintessential Michigan.

A suffocating defense, a resolute running game, smart decisions by quarterback J.J. McCarthy led the way as Michigan won the national title Monday night with a convincing 34-13 win over Washington. It was the school’s first national title since 1997.

Michigan players were still giving post-game interviews when the lines for the 2025 national title were released at the best Michigan sportsbooks. Georgia was the +350 favorite at BetRivers next year, with Michigan listed eighth at +1400. FanDuel Sportsbook had Michigan fifth at +1000.

Michigan has repeated as national champions before, but you’d have to go back a while. The last time Michigan repeated was in 1947 and 1948.

A Season Defined by Excellence 

Michigan was the ultimate team in college football. They didn’t have a Heisman Trophy finalist. They had one consensus All-American in offensive lineman Zak ZInter and he got hurt in the Ohio State game and missed the college football playoff.

There was no easy way to attack the Michigan defense because they were such a good unit overall. Michigan just didn’t make things easy for anybody offensively. Aside from a brief few moments against Alabama, I can’t think of one time the defense was on its heels.

Offensively, the Wolverines were blessed with speed and talented running backs Blake Corum and Donovan Edwards. Corum owned the regular season, but Edwards was arguably the player of the CFP final with two long TD runs in the first quarter. McCarthy finishes his Michigan career 27-1 as a starter. Historic.

A Season Marked by Controversy 

The Michigan football season started with Coach Jim Harbaugh suspended for three games for NCAA violations. No big deal. That was the easy cupcake period of the Michigan schedule.

Then then season took a weird turn with low-level assistant coach Conor Stalions implicated in a sign-stealing controversy. Stalions was fired. Wolverines linebacker coach Chris Patridge was fired for telling players not to talk to NCAA investigators.

Whether the tactic worked and how much it gave Michigan an edge (if any) will never be known, but it turned Michigan into villains for most of the country.

What’s Next in 2025? 

Michigan will look different in 2025, and the Big Ten will look different. The 2024 Michigan schedule is beastly with Texas (now in the SEC), USC (now in the Big Ten) and Washington (also now in the Big 10 and the CFP finalist).

Before you say everyone is going to leave and go pro, remember that Name, Image and Likeness money is a real thing and players may be tempted to stay with the Wolverines one more year, because they can make money playing at Michigan.

Harbaugh will always be connected to NFL jobs and he will be again in this NFL carousel cycle. He was a successful coach in the NFL before. Where there’s that much smoke, there has to be fire. He may feel like he’s done it all at Michigan now and move on, or he may think there’s no place better.

For sure in the 2023 season, no team was better than Michigan.


Born and raised in Louisiana, Darren Cooper has a fond appreciation for bayous, Mardi Gras beads and the sports betting industry. Darren has worked for multiple print and online publications since 1998, primarily as a sports columnist in the Northeast. He’s covered a Super Bowl (it was a blowout), the World Series (same) and the NBA Draft (man, those guys are tall). For the last few years he’s dug deep into the sports gambling industry as it exploded across America, learning how the legal sausage is made and how while all the sportsbooks look the same, they all have different identities and styles. He’s learned to always bet within his means -- and take the under. When not in front of his computer creating, Darren spends time with his three boys. He runs, reads and is always looking for the next big thing to write about.