Week 12 - The Game is Coming
By Martin Magers
If you know one thing about this week in college football, it is this: The Game is on Saturday.
A decade ago, I crowded into a study lounge in my college dorm with my friends to watch then #2 Michigan travel to Columbus to take on then #1 Ohio State. Both teams were undefeated, with the Big Ten Championship and a spot in the BCS National Championship Game on the line. It was arguably the biggest game that had ever been played between the two bitter rivals, and I was certain my Wolverines would win The Game. Ultimately, my heart sank as Michigan fell three points short. Michigan would soon be stuck in a near decade-long free fall from relevance.
Now, ten years after that loss, having endured the Rich Rod and Hoke eras, Michigan has an opportunity to avenge that loss and restore themselves atop the Big Ten. As fate you have it, opportunities for a Big Ten and a national championship await the winner yet again.
Who will win? Ohio State is favored, and rightly so. Michigan may be forced to use its backup quarterback, Ohio State has the speed and athleticism on offense to potentially expose Michigan’s linebackers, and the Buckeyes have owned this series lately. On the other hand, Michigan boasts one of the best defenses in the country, Ohio State lost to a Penn State team that Michigan slaughtered, and Jabrill Peppers is one of the most electrifying players in the country.
I can’t wait until Saturday.
Everything else that isn’t nearly as important as The Game:
Louisville got destroyed by Houston. Lamar Jackson may still win the Heisman, but Louisville will not make the playoff.
Oklahoma blew out West Virginia. It’s unlikely that Oklahoma, with two losses, will make the playoff, but the Sooners do have a prayer.
Washington, currently on the playoff bubble, takes on Washington State on Saturday. If the Huskies want to remain on the good side of the bubble, they’ll need a win.
If Ohio State beats Michigan and Penn State can take care of business against Michigan State this week, it will actually be Penn State representing the East Division in the Big Ten Championship game.