ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) -If No. 25 Michigan is ranked somewhere in the final AP football poll four months from now, coach Rich Rodriguez will be proud.
Right now, he's not interested in the fact that the Wolverines are ranked for the first time with him on the sideline.
``I don't care right now,'' Rodriguez said Monday. ``I would hope that anybody in our program doesn't care, but it's nice for the fans. It's nice for whatever recognition that it gives the school. But there's only one (poll) that matters, and that's at the end of the year.''
Rodriguez has liked what he's seen so far from Michigan, beating then-No. 18 Notre Dame in the final seconds Saturday and routing Western Michigan in the opener, and yet he added it's too early to know how good the Wolverines or any team is after just two games.
terest. It brings interest to the game.
``I'm not dismissing the polls. That's fun for people to follow it. But from a coaching standpoint, from a player's standpoint, big deal.''
Freshman quarterback Tate Forcier, who made the game-winning throw and scored on a long run against Notre Dame, said he was surprised to see the Wolverines were ranked.
``I was pretty happy,'' said Forcier, who is a Big Ten player of the week along with teammate Darryl Stonum, who had a 94-yard kickoff return for a TD against the Fighting Irish. ``We have to keep pushing forward and hopefully we'll move up.''
Rodriguez has to help Michigan deal with success for the first time since replacing Lloyd Carr after the 2008 season. Michigan lost a school-record nine games last year in Rodriguez's debut season with college football's winningest program.
The Wolverines (2-0) are expected to surpass last season's win total, with home games against Eastern Michigan and Indiana up next before their first road game on Oct. 3 at Michigan State.
The coach said he planned to tell his players they may have won over a few doubters with their performances the past two weeks.
``But it just takes one bad performance for all that positive vibe to go away,'' he said. ``We'll talk quite a bit about that this week, playing to our capabilities and playing with the same intensity all the time.''
re than three TDs against Eastern Michigan, which is coached by former Michigan defensive coordinator Ron English.
A season ago, oddsmakers made Michigan a heavy favorite to beat Toledo and it lost to a Mid-American Conference school for the first time in school history.
Eastern Michigan almost stunned Northwestern on the road before losing in the final seconds Saturday, and Rodriguez said that will help his players respect their neighbors this week.
``Northwestern had to kick a 50-yard field goal to win it and Northwestern has a very good ballclub,'' Rodriguez said. ``Eastern didn't quit, and obviously came back and had a great chance to win the game.''

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