Last week, even as late as Saturday morning, ESPN analyst Kirk Herbstreit expected Michigan to lose to Purdue.

The first four games of the season were enough for him to doubt the Wolverines.

But after watching U-M’s 44-13 whipping of the Boilermakers -- he even apologized on Twitter during the game for his missed prediction -- he’s a lot more confident in Michigan’s Legends Division title chances. He said during a conference call today that U-M could be the division's representative in the title game in Indianapolis.

“It’s wide open, it’s competitive,” Herbstreit said of the Legends Division race. “Michigan is there, Michigan State, despite sitting with a conference loss at 1-1,Nike Air Max Shoes even Nebraska, with the way they’re scoring points. You would think those three teams have a good shot to get to a Big Ten championship game in Indianapolis. Looking at that, you have to go through who plays who where. But Michigan, based on the way they played last week, they’ve got a shot to get to Indy.”

His feeling on the Wolverines swung mostly on Saturday’s game.

“They looked outstanding last week, what they were able to do against Purdue on the road, and Denard Robinson played really well,” he said. “More importantly, their defense played really, really well. It gives them a ton of confidence as they get ready for the rest of the year. But 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.

“So I don’t know if they used the bye week to gather themselves and make some adjustments and go back to letting Denard be Denard or what happened, but if you were to look at Michigan last Saturday and compare it to the first four games that we watched them, it was a different team. For Michigan’s sake, hopefully, they’re able to bottle that up and play that way the rest of the year. And if they do, they’ll be tough for anybody to beat.”

Contact Mark Snyder: Follow him on Twitter @mark__snyder.

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