Ah yes. Big Ten football at its finest. Run the ball. Play keep-away. Grind it out. Hold on a sec...we interrupt this post as Mike Hart is running to the left again.
It was a matchup of...well...it was a matchup. A couple of old time coaches, who have quite obviously let the game pass them by, banging their old leather covered heads together, trying to prove that the safe way to victory is the only way to victory. That's been the way that Penn State has played us seemingly forever, if not at least since 1997. They seem to have not figured out what nearly every other program in the country has. To beat Michigan, you need to play something other than Michigan Football. We invented safe. We invented ball control. We've been doing it for 125 years. We see it in practice. We see it in our sleep. If you try it, you have a much smaller chance to win.
If we hadn't lost to App State, and we hadn't allowed Oregon to hand us our ass, we'd probably be complaining about this game today. But when you're in the middle of "the season on the brink," knocking off an undefeated top-10 opponent can be quite satisfying, no matter how the cat was skinned.
Today, and every other Sunday for the next 8 weeks, the question will undoubtedly be "are the Wolverines back?" Back? The truth is that Michigan never really went anywhere. The team that beat Notre Dame and Penn State is Michigan...and the team that lost to App State and Oregon is also Michigan. This is what we are. And while we are certainly more focused, and are rallying around our own self pity, the truth of the matter is that if we played Oregon on Saturday, we'd still lose. But that's just the way things are here. We don't have the horses for that race.
Fortunately for us, we don't play Oregon again (until maybe the Rose Bowl? Nah). And thank god we didn't slip Wofford into the Eastern Michigan slot on the schedule. We play in the Big Ten. Which is fortunate since we play Big Ten football. And while I have no delusions of grandeur of running the table in this league, it looks at least like we might be able to win some games. This could ultimately result in everyone being happy. Lloyd turns around the Wolverines. Lloyd leaves program on his own terms and takes over Bo's office as Assistant Athletic Director. Wolverines hire new coach (AKA Les Miles). Ok, ok, too much thinking ahead.
It's time to go to Chicago. Deep dish pizza, the Cubs, the Bears, and live from Evanston...the Mike Hart show. One caveat...hang on to your hats... they kinda sorta run a spread-like offense.
The Best Tailgate Ever?
Seems to happen against Penn State every time. Two years ago, Henne to Manningham rang in the rafters. Last year the combo tailgate with Gar's World and his winnie was certainly the best of our road slate. This year, the newly adapted carnival theme stole the show. It was easily the most participation, the fullest selection of food, and quite frankly, the most fun. I mean, seriously...balloon pop with prizes, duck hunt forcing an OSU guy to sing the victors, beer pong, elephant ears, walking tacos, cheesesteaks, fries, onion rings, fried mushrooms, cheese sticks...and the best damn post game chili and chili dogs I've ever had. We are so next level.