Michigan Football: Michigan at Ohio State — “THE GAME” — GBMWolverine Staff Predictions
This will be the 109th meeting between Michigan and Ohio State. The Wolverines hold a 58-44-6 advantage in the all-time series. \
Michigan is 18-0 under head coach Brady Hoke when scoring 20 or more points.
The GBMWolverine staff have made their predictions, how about you? Come to the message board and make your prediction and also comment on the thread.
Call it a hunch, but I have a feeling Michigan has saved its best for last.
And they will have to, Ohio State is most talented team on our schedule.
Ohio State 27
The wind and cold will be at Ohio stadium tomorrow, as well as about anywhere nearby. No one in Columbus gives Michigan a chance to win Saturday. The Great One gave a speech at Value City Furniture Arena at halftime of the basketball game against mighty UMKC, pronouncing this year’s team to be one the very special teams in Ohio State history. Urban has been portrayed as owning every rival ever. Wind and cold can make a difference. if the wind makes throwing difficult, this probably favors Ohio State by making it a game of which team can run and defend the run the best. But well see. Across the board Ohio State has far more talent and is deeper. Urban Meyer needs this win to complete his coronation as complete emperor of nut nation and to swagger the recruiting scene.
The two biggest factors to me remain: (1) how well Devin plays (linked to offensive line play) and (2) can Michigan limit Braxton Miller’s yardage as did Wisconsin. Wisconsin, of course, is an entirely different team. Michigan’s seniors have done a great job for the Wolverine’s this year, as have the guys in Columbus for Ohio State. Michigan will face pressure all day long, from Miller, from the defensive line, from the fans, etc. I believe the Wolverines know what faces them and accept the challenge. This is the entire existence of Ohio State winning this game and has been portrayed as Ohio’s must win bowl game for months. Michigan must first show Ohio State they can hang in the game.
Ohio should win this game at home three out of four times and the word has been spread to run Michigan into the ground for an embarrassing loss. Not sure the nuts can do that but I am going with:
Ohio State 27
Michigan ranks first in the country in pass defense (152.2 avg.) The Wolverines also rank 12th in total defense (303.5) and 17th in scoring defense (18.1). The problem is they haven’t faced a dual threat quarterback like Braxton Miller this year and the problems that the Michigan defense has had this year with a mobile, running quarterback has to make you a little worried. Did Coach Mattison learn something from those games that can be fixed? Can it be fixed in a short time or is it simple talent level on the defense that keeps improving? Well recruiting is on the back burner today and you have the players you got so hopefully they bring their best game of the year today. In a lot of the cases it depends on the players making the plays and doing the simple things such as wrapping up the ball carrier, good pursuit angles, and don’t over pursue to allow the cutbacks. As a defensive player you got to stay focused and do what you can and allow/trust your other brothers on defense to do their job as well and become one complete unit and not to try and over do it.
The Michigan offense the past couple of weeks under Devin Gardner has shown a more complete type of offense and one that Coach Borges has used in the past and will likely see in the future. But that was against teams like Minnesota, Northwestern who we had to have a miracle like finish to win the game, and Iowa. Can they do it against one of the better defenses units in the Big Ten with probably the best talent we have faced in the conference this year as well? Time will tell and late this afternoon we will see how well the offense is under Devin Gardner.
Michigan has played three of the AP’s top four teams this season (#1 Notre Dame, #2 Alabama and #4 Ohio State — all away from Michigan Stadium and that should actually help the Wolverines as they play in the “snake-pit” today with “The Michigan Bowl” on the line today as the Buckeye faithful have called it since they aren’t allowed to play in a bowl game this season. They always have this game as the most important and the one that could put Urban as a saint in Columbus today and can do not wrong, but he has to beat Michigan first before they allow such sainthood just like the coach/team they are going to honor at halftime the 2002 buckeyes with Coach Tressel and Maurice Clarret side by side.
This game comes down to who can control the line of scrimmage and who can limit the big plays. Always tough to win in C-Bus, but think Michigan plays their best game of the year and win.
Ohio State 27
No prediction sent in this week.Mike Fitzpatrick (TheMichiganManPodcast)
We’ve heard a lot of talk this week from both fan bases about the dawning of a “new golden era” in this storied rivalry. Brady vs. Urban in what could be a new version of the 10 year war. Only time will tell.
The Buckeyes are ready for “The Michigan Bowl”. All of their little Buckeye eggs are in one basket right now. Beat Michigan and the Bucs are 12-0 and Leaders Division Champions. What a year! Other than it ends for them tomorrow. Both teams are playing for high stakes and this should be an entertaining and physical game.
The Ohio State offense has a powerful running game, a very good offensive line, and of course Braxton Miller. By their own coaches admission the weak link in this offense is the passing game. Not Braxton Miller he says, but the inability of the Ohio wide-outs to get open on a consistent basis. Philly Brown is starting to come on, but Devin Smith has all but disappeared in Big 10 play. Let’s hope they don’t put that piece of the game together today.
This is not a vintage Ohio defense, but they are good, and they are as healthy as they’ve been all year. Michigan will need a balanced attack to be successful against this defense. With Devin Gardner running the show Michigan has become a much harder team to defend against. Now throw Denard in the mix at running back or wide receiver. I think last week we got an inkling of what Coach Borges can do with both Devin & Denard on the field at the same time, but I think what we saw was just a piece of what he has planned for our probationary friends in Columbus. I also have a feeling that Thomas Rawls could be an X-Factor in this game. I’m not saying he’s going to have a Tim Biakabutuka kind of game, but something tells me he’s ready to explode on the scene. I can hope can’t I?
On defense we have to keep contain on Braxton Miller. Have to! Have to! Have to! Coach Mattison has seen that the only two defenses that have been succesful against him (Purdue & Wisconsin) played a soft front six, and ALWAYS kept a man in the cutback lanes. Miller is a much less efficient quarterback when you keep him in the pocket or handing off. If we can accomplish this trick, things could go our way.
I think points will be put on the board in this game, and until last week I thought Ohio would put up a few more than us. Call me delirious! But I think Coach Borgess has a few surprises up his Maize N Blue sleeves for the Buckeye defense. It will be no easy task, but by tomorrow afternoon I expect to be celebrating our second win in a row over Ohio. Let the New Age Ten Year War Begin. I’m ready! Are you? Go Blue!
No prediction sent in this week.
Ohio State 23
I think we have a chance to win this game if:
1. Our defense keeps Miller in between the tackles and limits his big plays. Unlike Tressel, Meyer will not exploit Michigan’s weaknesses (like cover on the tight end etc.) and will continue to run the ball. He will have a trick play here or there, though.
2. Our offense moves the ball and collects points on most of their drives- including not turning the ball over.
3. No special teams gaffes.
Yes, it is a Christmas list for sure, but one this team can accomplish. If not, they will be the 8-4 team we thought they’d be. Nothing would sweeter than to beat OHIO for their first loss and go to a nice bowl game while they sit home.
Total homer pick…
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Written by GBMWolverine Staff
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