Ten Things I Think Will Happen For Michigan Against Indiana
As 22-point favorites over the Black Knights of Army, Michigan escaped with a three-point win in double overtime. As 3.5-dogs against the Badgers, U-M limped away from Madison after a 21-point loss that was actually much worse. The Wolverines were favored by 27.5 over Rutgers and won by 52 in an offensive explosion compared to weeks prior. There was the 10-point offensive clunker against the Hawkeyes that somehow resulted in a win. Then five weeks ago, Michigan inexplicably gave up 25 straight points to Illinois before ultimately winning the game 42-25. A game went somewhat according to plan when Michigan lost by just seven in Happy Valley a few weekends ago and then the Wolverines drubbed the Irish 45-14 in Ann Arbor as slight underdogs. A 31-point win over Maryland was pretty much expected ahead of the bye week but it didn't exactly play out like some thought in terms of game flow and stats. Last week Michigan punked Michigan State by 34 points, which was pretty much expected.
All of that makes these guesses tricky, but here are some specific predictions on how the action will look this Saturday.
Ronnie Bell will score a touchdown
I mean come on! Bell is leading the team in catches with 37 and yardage with 621, yet he does not have a touchdown. He's been asked about it several times in the last week or so and now quarterback Shea Patterson is well aware of it too. I think he finally gets into the end zone against the Hoosiers.
Shea Patterson will throw for at least 250 yards
Patterson blew up for 384 yards and four touchdowns last week against the Spartans, which was his best performance as a Wolverine by a lot. He'll need to be good through the air again against a pretty good Indiana team. I expect the attack to be a bit more balance against the Hoosiers but I still see Patterson having a good day after finding some really effective plays against MSU.
Hassan Haskins will lead the team in rushing
Haskins only carried the ball six times for 13 yards against the Spartans so I think he'll be more of a focal point this weekend. He's now started four games in a row and seems to be the clear cut No. 1 back with freshman Zach Charbonnet right there. I think both of them will get more opportunities than they did against Michigan State, which might result in a 100-yard day for either of them; I'm going with Haskins.
Quinn Nordin will make at least two field goals
Weirdly, Nordin now seems to be the starting placekicker after it definitely looked like the job belonged to Jake Moody. Nordin went 3-for-3 last week against Michigan State while Moody watched from the sidelines. That certainly seems to indicate that the job is now Nordin's to lose and I think he'll boot a couple against the Hoosiers.
Cameron McGrone will record at least six tackles
This doesn't sound like a lot for a player making as big of a splash as McGrone has, but he's actually averaging less than four tackles per game and has only eclipsed 10 twice this year. Indiana has a pretty balanced attack on offense so McGrone could be involved in a lot of ways. I think he'll make quite a few stops and might actually lead the team this week.
A freshman will score a touchdown
Giles Jackson, Mike Sainristil and Cornelius Johnson all have touchdowns on the season now and one of them is going to get in there again this weekend. Throw in the possibility of Erick All slipping into the lineup and catching a touchdown in the red zone and I think one of the rookies will put points on the board.
A Michigan cornerback will intercept another pass
Both Lavert Hill and Ambry Thomas had an interception last week and I think either one of them or Vincent Gray will get another one against Peyton Ramsey this week. Hill and Thomas now have three apiece and have been in the correct position for most of the year. As the U-M defense puts pressure on Ramsey, he'll throw one up for grabs for
Michigan will record at least 2.5 sacks
Michigan is averaging a little over three sacks per game so this one seems like a slam dunk, but is it? Indiana quarterbacks have only been sacked 15 times, or 1.5 times per game. This is a pretty interesting storyline to follow as Michigan's defense thrives on pressuring the quarterback. I think U-M's defense will outperform Indiana's offense and will get to Ramsey more than he's used to.
Michigan will hold Stevie Scott to less than 75 yards rushing
Scott is averaging 79.1 rushing yards per game so keeping him under 75 for the game would be an impressive feat. At 6-2, 231 pounds, Scott is a big back who can do it all. He rarely comes off the field and will certainly get his opportunities. I think Michigan will shut him down.
Michigan will cover the 8.5-point spread
I think Michigan is quite a bit better than Indiana even though the Hoosiers are having a good year. Michigan just pounded Michigan State by 34 points and earlier this year, the Spartans beat Indiana 40-31. I know the transitive property doesn't work in football and that was back in September, but there's no way Michigan should lose to the Hoosiers, in my opinion.
What do you think of the predictions? Which will happen and which won't? What predictions do you have? Comment below!!!