Three keys for the Wolverines in the annual rivalry game between Michigan football vs. Michigan State.
Few games fire up Michigan football fans like Michigan State. The rivalry has heated up over the years and boiled over last year when MSU players attacked some Wolverines in the tunnel after the game.
The two straight wins by Mel Tucker seemed to change things and so did Mark Dantonio’s tenure at least the end, which was spoiled by Jim Harbaugh.
However, the Wolverines can really establish themselves again with another win. Harbaugh has won two in a row just once against Michigan State and this would be the second time.
The last trip to Spartan Stadium ended with Michigan football blowing a 16-point lead in the third quarter. Plenty of nightmares have happened for the Wolverines in East Lansing and here are three keys to avoiding that on Saturday night.
Manage emotions and start fast
Michigan started extremely fast against Minnesota with a pick-six on the first play from scrimmage. The Wolverines also scored early against Nebraska.
But in the wins over Rutgers and Indiana, Michigan football fell behind 7-0 and didn’t score until the second quarter last week against the Hoosiers. Michigan did score 52 straight points last week and 31 consecutive against Rutgers, but U-M doesn’t want to start like that on Saturday.
The atmosphere will be electric and the best thing for Michigan is to take the crowd out of the game early. They also don’t want to let Michigan State build confidence. Establishing the run and getting the lead early would accomplish both objectives.