The train is not off the tracks completely for the Michigan football team coming into this week but it must be a week that the Michigan offense finds a way to win against a waning Indiana Hoosier team.
The game starts at noon eastern time and is in Bloomington, Ind. This is also Homecoming weekend for the Hoosiers.
Michigan brings in the No. 1 defense into this contest and the No. 84 scoring offense in the NCAA. Indiana brings in the No. 47 defense in the country and they are the second best in getting three and outs in the Big Ten. Michigan is No. 1 in the Big Ten in this category.
Indiana University is led by freshman Peyton Ramsey who came into the game a couple weeks ago against Penn State. Ramsey proved himself a competent starter last week against Charleston Southern where he threw for 321 yards on 32 completions of the 41 attempts. He had two touchdowns and an interception and allowed one sack.
The Hoosiers are led at running back by freshman Morgan Ellison who has 358 yards and two touchdowns. The second leading rusher is quarterback Payton Ramsey who has rushed for 171 yards and two touchdowns in the past two games. Indiana has a record of 3-2 overall and a 0-2 record in the Big Ten.
The Wolverines will have a huge challenge this week when they bring in their subpar offense against Indiana’s defense. The Hoosier defense is very good and has kept them in games just the Wolverine defense. The two defenses in this game are very good and very young.
Can Michigan get it together this week?
This Michigan team has been plagued with poor decisions by the quarterback, penalties that end drives, and drops at key points in the game. If this team can get over themselves and play like they should they will win.
Michigan comes in this week with a 4-1 record overall and a 1-1 record in the Big Ten. The Wolverines suffered a heartbreaking defeat last week in the first ever night game against Michigan State at the Big House.
The Wolverines are led by their defense and special teams. Even before the injury to quarterback Wilton Speight the offense has had issues scoring points and working in the red zone.
The new quarterback John O’Korn has had some ups and downs. He came in against Purdue and had a career day against the Boilermakers. He started against the Spartans of Michigan State last week and had a miserable day. O’Korn threw three interceptions and could not get anything going on offense.
Overall O’Korn has completed 35 of his 62 pass attempts. He has 505 yards and a touchdown. He has also thrown four interceptions on the season.
The leading rusher for the Wolverines is Ty Isaac who has had 61 rushes for 365 yards and a touchdown. Along with Isaac is Chris Evans who has rushed 59 times and has 247 yards and two touchdowns. Not to be outdone is Karan Higdon who has rushed 45 times for 201 yards and scored two touchdowns.
This a rushing team but the receivers are very effective also. They are a young team with mostly freshman at wide receiver. Their tight ends are also not too shabby with this being the best crop in many years.
Grant Perry leads the team in receptions with 18 and 224 yards. He also has a touchdown. The best tight end so far is Sean McKeon who has 14 receptions for 179 yards.
Michigan’s defense last week gave up 14 points in the first half but then totally shut down the Spartans in the second half. One of the touchdowns they gave up was on a short field situation after a Ty Isaac fumble. This week Michigan will face a mobile quarterback in Ramsey who has most of the rushing yards for his team.
The strength of the defense is in the front seven with linebacker Devin Bush leading the way. Bush has 23 solo tackles and 4.5 sacks accounting for 36 yards in lost yardage.
The other real difference makers are the defensive line as a whole. Maurice Hurst the future NFL star racking up 12 solo tackles, two quarterback hurries, and a forced fumble. Chase Winovich who has had 13 solo tackles, and 5.5 sacks accounting for 35 yards lost. He also has three quarterback hurries and a forced fumble.
Time will tell what offense we will see from Michigan this week in a game they are favored to win by eight points. If the offensive line can block better this game and the fumbling and interceptions stop we may see the best game of the season.