Throw out the expectations. Throw out the recruiting rankings. Throw out coaching prestige. Throw out program tradition.
It’s time to find out what Michigan’s coaches and players have inside their chests. That’s where we’re at in the 2020 campaign.
In the past three weeks, the Wolverines have lost as a three-touchdown favorite to their in-state rival, lost to a program it hadn’t fallen to since 1987 and were blown out by 38 points at home on national television.
If Michigan loses to Rutgers today… what embarrassment is left?
I’m ready to see what Jim Harbaugh, Josh Gattis and Ben McDaniels decide to do at quarterback. Joe Milton has shown flashes of his talent, but the inconsistency has cost the Wolverines. Do they go to Cade McNamara after a promising drive he led last week against Wisconsin?
When Harbaugh and company named Milton the starter this summer, they had to know it likely meant losing redshirt junior Dylan McCaffery to the transfer portal. Are they going to pull the plug on Milton after just four starts? Should they?
I’d like to see what McNamara’s got, but this is a multi-layered decision. Ultimately, however, the coaches need to do what is going to help this team win right now.
Michigan also has to figure out this running back rotation, because their approach so far has been abysmal. This was arguably the most talented position group the Wolverines had coming into the season and they’ve gotten minimal production from it since Week 1.
There’s too much talent in that room for these results. Maybe there are too many mouths to feed. If that’s the case, find one or two guys that stand out and feed them the rock.
Defensively, the Wolverines have holes at all three levels, and they need to find the guys to plug them. Again, forget the recruiting rankings, forget the seniority. Find the guys that are going to fight at their positions.
Faith in defensive coordinator Don Brown hasn’t been lower amongst this fan base. It’s time to find out what he has left to offer this program.
This all has very little to do with the opponent. No disrespect intended to Rutgers, but this is about how the Wolverines react to what has happened these last three weeks. What does the game of football mean to these players and coaches? Is there any fight left in this team?
We’ll find out tonight.