This weekend is what the entire season has been leading up to, at least that’s how it feels for head coach Jim Harbaugh and Michigan.
The No. 6 Wolverines (10-1) host the No. 4 Ohio State Buckeyes (10-1) in one of the greatest rivalries in college football.
Michigan is ranked second in the Big Ten, both overall and in the East Division. Ohio State is the lone team ahead of them in both instances.
The Wolverine offense and defense are both ranked among the top three in the conference, No. 2 and No. 3 respectively.
Michigan’s defense has held opposing offenses to a mere 16.3 points per game this season, making them one of, if not the, best defense Ohio State will have seen this year.
Running back Hassan Haskins is leading the charge on offense for the Wolverines, assisted by fellow-RB Blake Corum.
Both Haskins and Corum were forced to pick up the offensive slack after star receiver Ronnie Bell was sidelined for the year with a torn ACL back in September.
Several receivers have also been doing their part to make up for Bell’s absence, most notably Cornelius Johnson. Johnson leads the team in individual receiving yards with 539.
Quarterback Cade McNamara has proven up to the task as the signal-caller for the Michigan offense.
The junior has thrown for 2,142 yards and 14 touchdowns, with a 64.2 completion percentage and only two interceptions.
“The Game,” as this weekend’s rivalry contest is more commonly known, has much more riding on it than mere bragging rights. The winner of this game will play in the Big Ten Championship Game against either Wisconsin, Iowa or Minnesota. Further, the winner of this game will have a great shot at qualifying for the College Football Playoff.
It has been a staggering 3,648 days since Michigan last defeated Ohio State. Perhaps the enormous stakes of Saturday’s matchup will finally be enough to push the Wolverines past the Buckeyes.
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