Michigan State hits rare 2-weekend TRIFECTA (paired with UM and ND losses) The Enlightened Spartan: Michigan State hits rare 2-weekend TRIFECTA (paired with UM and ND losses)

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Michigan State hits rare 2-weekend TRIFECTA (paired with UM and ND losses)

TRIFECTA HISTORY – Past 46 years (since 1968). Weekends: 544. Occurred: 21 times.  3.8%

OK, so Michigan State whipped Penn State, 34-10 in Happy Valley.  Now, let's revisit our trifecta... The ES looked back at this in 2009… and that was when Mark Dantonio was just kicking off as coach. My, oh my,  how things have changed… or have they?  While MSU’s dominance in the rivalry vs Michigan is solidified, we’ve struggled vs the hated Irish… and thusly, the trifecta seemingly is still pretty tough.

But, this weekend we HIT THE TRIFECTA! FOR THE SECOND WEEK IN A ROW (only third time this has happened since 1968)!  MSU beat Penn State, Michigan lost to Ohio State, and ND lost to Southern Cal.... Spartan fans, the trifecta is a a very, very, very difficult thing to do.  What is the trifecta?  Again, the ES Trifecta is defined as: on the same weekend for there to be a Michigan State victory AND losses by Notre Dame and Michigan. Note, on some weekends over the past four decades not all three teams played. But, again, the TRIFECTA makes for a PERFECT football weekend when all three events are combined.

The ES looked back over his lifetime, 46 years long now, to see how often his weekend football Trifecta had occurred.

Is it happening more frequently than the ES remembers in the past? Certainly, YES.  Dantonio is now among the nation’s elite,  Rich Rod and the soon-to-be-has-been Brady Hoke are both Michigan coaching history… Chuck E Weis is a goner at ND, but Brian Kelly seems to have the ability to stick around for the Irish.  Still, let's take a looksie… 

The statistics, plain Ws and Ls are below.
  • From 2007 - 2014, the Trifecta occurred 11 times (11 times over 88 weekends = 12.5% frequency).
  • From 1968 – 2006, the Trifecta occurred 10 times (10 times over 443 weekends = 2.3% frequency).
  • Seven times in the past 46 years has a weekend included either MSU defeating Michigan and ND losing, or MSU defeating ND and Michigan losing. 
  • Three times has the Trifecta occurred in back-to-back weekends: the first weekends of the 2007 season, from 11/7 to 11/14 in 2009, and NOW - the last two weekends (11/22-11/29) in 2014.
  • There has not been a Trifecta three times in a row in the past 46 years. And, the next opportunity to do this is the opening weekend of 2015, since Michigan is ineligible for bowl season.  (it is possible to FINALLY do the trifecta thrice first week of 2015:  MSU at WMU, Michigan at Utah, ND hosts Texas).
The year-by-year break out is below.

2014 (2)
11/22.  Michigan at Maryland. L, 16-23.  ND v Louisville, L, 28-31.  MSU v Rutgers, W, 45-3.
11/29.  Michigan at Ohio State. L, 28-42.  ND at USC, L, 14-49.  MSU at Penn State, W, 34-10.

2013 (1)
11/30.  Michigan v Ohio State, L, 41-42.  ND at Stanford, L. 20-27.  MSU v Minnesota, @. 14-3.

2012 (1)
Bowls.  Michigan v South Carolina (Outback), L, 28-33.  ND v Alabama (BCS Title), L, 14-42.  MSU vs TCU (BWW), W, 17-16.

2010 - 2011: none

2009 (2)
11/7. Michigan vs Purdue. L, 36-38. ND vs Navy. L, 21-23. MSU vs WMU. W, 49-14.
11/14. Michigan at Wisconsin. L, 24-45. ND at Pitt. L, 22-27. MSU vs Purdue. W, 40-37.

2008 (2)
10/11. Michigan vs Toledo. L, 10-13. ND at North Carolina. L, 24-29. MSU at N’western. W, 37-20.
11/1. Michigan at Purdue. L, 42-48. ND vs Pittsburgh. L, 33-36. MSU vs. Wisconsin. W, 25-24.

2007 (3)
9/1. Michigan vs. Appalachian St. L, 32-34. ND vs Georgia Tech. L, 3-33. MSU vs UAB. W, 55-18.
9/8. Michigan vs. Oregon. L, 7-39. ND at Penn State. L, 10-31. MSU vs BGSU. W, 28-17.
11/10. Michigan at Wisconsin. L, 21-37. ND vs Air Force. L, 24-41. MSU at Purdue. W, 48-31.

2006 – 2004: none

2003 (1)
9/20. Michigan at Oregon. L, 27-31. ND vs MSU. L, 16-22. MSU at ND. W, 22-16.

2002: none

2001 (2)
9/8. Michigan at Washington. L, 18-23. ND at Nebraska. L, 10-27. MSU vs CMU. W, 35-21.
11/3. Michigan at MSU. L, 24-26. ND vs Tennessee. L, 18-28. MSU vs Michigan. W, 26-24.

2000 - 1999: none

1998 (1)
9/12. Michigan vs Syracuse. L, 28-38. ND at MSU. L, 23-45. MSU vs ND. W, 45-23.

1997 - 1988: none

1987 (2)
10/10. Michigan at MSU. L, 11-17. ND at Pitt. L, 22-30. MSU vs Michigan. W, 17-11.
11/21. Michigan vs Ohio St. L, 20-23. ND at Penn St. L, 20-21. MSU at Wisconsin. W, 30-9.

1986-1985: none

1984 (1)
10/6. Michigan vs MSU. L, 7-19. ND vs Miami-FL. L, 13-31. MSU at Michigan. W, 19-7.

1983 (1)
9/17. Michigan at Washington. L, 24-25. ND vs. MSU. L, 23-28. MSU at ND. W, 28-23.

1982-1980: none.

1979 (1)
11/10. Michigan at Purdue. L, 21-24. ND at Tennessee. L, 18-40. MSU vs Minnesota. W, 31-17.

1978-77: none.

1976 (1)
11/6. Michigan at Purdue. L, 14-16. ND at Georgia Tech. L, 14-23. MSU vs Indiana. W, 23-0.

1975-1968: none.

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