I am not going to predict an undefeated season. However,it is uncanny how many similarities there are between the 1997 team and the 2015 team. I will list. Neither team was highly regarded in the preseason. Brian Griese was a 5th year senior who was viewed at best a game manager and who did exactly that. Is this not what we expect if Rudolph is indeed the starting QB? The 1997 team opened against a very strong Colorado team. This team opens up against Utah. Griese was truly a game manager completing over 80 passes to RB's and Tuman had as many ypg(40) as the leading receiver Streets. It is possible a RB or TE may lead our team in receptions. Our lead RB was known for his power to get 3 instead of breaking for 80. Yet the RB position was done by committee. The 2015 team has 4 RB's who may get significant action with the lead being a power back. The core of the team was a dominant defense built around a great player in the secondary who had the freedom to make great plays. Woodson was not just a great defender but a three way player who made plays on offense and special team. The strength of the 2015 team will be the defense that returns almost everyone of significance. Peppers may only be a redshirt freshman. Yet all of the talk is he is the keystone of the defense. And of course the 1997 team hosted its two biggest rivals.
Now there are some differences. The NFL draft in the succeeding years and the careers of those players revealed just how talented the 1997 team really was. Perhaps we could not say the same thing in August of 1997. Yet the age of mgo.blog makes it easier to have a handle on how talented or not talented an individual is. I do not see scores of NFL capable players much less evidence of players capable of long NFL careers on the 2015 team. However, the point of discussion is I believe Michigan has a chance to use the same template used in 1997 to have a better than expected year.