Saturday, November 19, 2005

Game Time!

I've been waiting 364 days for this. Last year's loss was terribly painful to watch. But now? We get a great chance for revenge in Ann Arbor. Here's how I see things stacking up:

When OSU has the ball:
  • Don't expect much from Pittman on the ground. Michigan's front seven has really come on strong this year and is tackling quite well. Plus Gabe Watson is actually playing like the wrecking crew in the middle he is capable of.
  • Watch out for OSU's receivers. I like our corners, but if we get into nickel or if they get a WR matched up with a safety in space we could be in trouble. Holmes is a very good WR that can run some great routes. Ginn is not a great receiver, but he just has to get his hands on the ball to be dangerous. I think OSU is going to hit a big pass or two in this game.
  • Troy Smith is obviously the key. Michigan is tackling mobile QBs much better this year, so no way does he go for 150 on the ground again. And while he's a pretty good passer, I'm still not overly impressed by his accuracy and I think we can get a turnover or two out of him today.
  • Look for the OSU offense to put up 21-24 points today.
When Michigan has the ball
  • Mike Hart is the man. OSU has an outstanding D and it all starts with stopping the run. Unfortunately for them, Mike Hart is one of those guys that can run on anybody when he gets going because he really doesn't need great blocking to consistently break runs. I'm looking for 125+ from Hart today.
  • Michigan is going to have TEs and WRs open today. I really don't think OSU can cover our receivers very long. They'll need to pressure Henne or he will be looking at some open targets. Fortunately for Michigan, Jake Long is back so along with Stenavich they have 2 outstanding bookends on the line to give Henne time to pass.
  • Chad Henne, it's time to step up. You've been taking crap all year and now you've got a chance to be a star. John Navarre was in a similar situation in 2003 playing a highly rated OSU squad and having taken crap his entire career from the Michigan fans and he came out and helped the Michigan offense destroy the OSU D. While I don't look for quite the same game out of you, I do expect big things today.
  • I look for Michigan's offense to score maybe 27 or 28 points today
Special Teams
  • This is obviously going to be clutch in this game. A return for a TD by either squad would be huge. Same thing goes for missed field goals. I can't quite predict what will happen, but we need a monster game from Ross Ryan and Garrett Rivas.

Anyways, should be an awesome game to watch. Oh, the hoops team also beat Central Michigan last night 87-60 in the season opener. That's 1-0 for those keeping track at home.


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