22 days until kickoff. Thank you, Jebus.
I see a lot of predictions from national outlets dismissing Michigan's chances in the big four games this year (Florida, @PSU, @Wisky, OSU). Lots of "maybe they pick off one, but they're too young." Instead of redundant talk about how they're Harbaugh's guys and youth won't matter, why are these games being dismissed as Michigan losses so early?
Florida-inept offense for four years running. Never ranking above 70 in offensive S&P. Defense returning only a handful of starters, without the same talent replenishment from years past. 15th in recruiting two years ago, which followed a 23rd ranking. Including the 41-7 bowl loss two years ago, Tennessee, Arkansas, Alabama, and FSU all racked up 30-plus points.
PSU-Obviously, 49-10 last year. Barkley may be elite, but he hasn't been for two years against M. Who has been able to pass the ball on Michigan in the last two years? CU, which is a quick passing spread. RB wheel routes? Connor Cook laser accuracy? It's been a tough nut to crack. Without a good PSU OL, this is a defensive slugfest. Which leads me to...
Nobody is talking about how mediocre their defense is. 42 points to Pitt. 49 against Michigan. 31 against depleted Indiana. 31 against pedestrian Wisky. 52 against USC. Why are they highly regarded?
Wisconsin-How are they going to move the ball? Defense will probably be solid, but they've lost tons of playmakers that set that defense apart (Cichy, Watt, Biegel, Shelton). The only way I see this falling apart is an Iowa-esque performance. Given our record in Big Ten West road games (Nebraska, Minnesota, Iowa), that's certainly possible.
OSU-Don't talk about them until after a few games in. I have no idea what to think with the turnover and coaching changes. All I know is I don't like them.