Originally Posted by westofyou
And Columbus is the Paris of the Midwest?
Nah. Parisians are snooty. Columbus is more...London. It's always gray both places.
Shoulda done a better job spelling out my premise. In a nutshell,
Michigan's population has been flat for the past decade, and has actually declined each of the last 4 years. Over the same time frame, Ohio (which has about 1.5 million more people) has added population each year, and grown by about 200,000 people over the decade. The Great Lakes region as a whole isn't adding population like the sun belt, southwest, or California. Michigan as a state is seeing a net outflow of people. There doesn't appear to be anything on the immediate horizon to reverse that trend line.
That's a reflection of a lot of things. Mainly economics. If you are a kid who grew up in Michigan, staying at home for college & football is an easier sell. If you are a kid from outside the state / region, it's a tougher sell. Factor in the weather (worse in Ann Arbor than in just about any other major college football town), and the smaller home state population base from which to draw, and those are two big things that UM must overcome. All else being equal, UM must import talent without a couple of the usual selling points that make it easy for Chambers of Commerce to drum up interest.