This is maaaaybe premature there, ESPN. Maryland #1 FWIW.
With the victory on Thursday night, Utah joins a very small subset of Michigan opponents. Since 1945, only three other non-conference opponents have won three straight (or more) regular season games against Michigan: Army ('45, '46, '49, '50, '54); Washington ('83, '84, '01); and Notre Dame ('87 thru '90).
It's of course true that the '08 and '14 teams Utah beat were two of the weakest Michigan teams since 1969, but that doesn't obscure the fact that Utah has been a pretty strong program since 2003. I'd compare the loss in SLC to the road losses we've had at UCLA, Washington, and ND over the years in terms of strength of opponent. Utah doesn't have the major-program cachet of those teams, but last year they beat USC, UCLA, and Stanford, the latter two on the road.
Hey if you're in AA and looking for something to do this afternoon head down to Oosterbahn at 1 to check out men's lacrosse vs. Notre Dame. The Irish are #2 but this is a huge opportunity for 2-0 Michigan to really turn the corner and pick up that signature win. It would be nice to get it against an archrival.
This is also the first official varsity matchup with the Irish (I believe they played in the old days when the rules of varsity vs club were much looser).
Oosterbahn can also be an extraordinarily difficult place to play for a team that has never experienced it. A lot of good teams, even superior teams, come into the fieldhouse and have trouble adjusting. For example, Michigan took highly ranked Cornell to overtime last year in Oosterbahn.
ND struggled against G'town last week, a program that has been down lately, and only came away with a 14-12 victory. So, its possible they haven't hit their stride yet and may be susceptible to an early-season upset.
Unfortunately, it won't be broadcast or streamed so you'll have to go see it for yourself.
Since the program's inception, I've made a lot of predictions that have proved to be wildly off base. But here's another one: Michigan pulls the upset 14-13! GO BLUE! BEAT THE IRISH!
Dear mgoblog community,
I'm strongly considering stub hubbing one ticket to the game this Saturday in South Bend, as my son is going as a guest of a family of Notre Dame friends and sitting WITH THEM in the ND section.
I sat with them a couple years ago, and while they're cool, the surrounding fans...
...not so much.
So if I were to buy a single ticket for me, what sections are best in terms of Michigan company?
Thanks, and Go Blue!
Here's the link: http://www.wsbt.com/sports/breaking-notre-dame-captain-austin-collinsworth-out-for-season-opener/27805816
Best wishes to the young man on his recovery, but I believe this is really bad news for ND's secondary (and D, generally).
Edit: Posted wrong link AND wrong info. Link:
So, a couple years ago, monuMental made an entirely amazing wallpaper for the first UTL game. Being a large fan of monuMental's work and contribution to the blog, I modified his version for post-game purposes (the preview pics are gone but the Skydrive link should still work).
Please note: the above is only a preview version and you should download the widescreen version here. (Yes, I am lame and only did one version.)
Thanks again to monuMental and all credit really belongs to him for the original art and concept.