Ohio State takes on Michigan today and the stakes couldn’t be any higher. Actually, that’s a bit of an overstatement. They could be a lot higher. In 2006 OSU was #1 taking on Michigan who was #2. Both teams were undefeated and playing for the right to play in the national title game. Ya, I would say those were probably the highest the stakes were ever going to get.
As for today’s game, it doesn’t really matter much in the grand scheme of things. OSU is undefeated, but because of their one year bowl ban this is their season. Some people like to believe that if everything goes right, they might be ranked #1 in the AP poll and split the national title, but that’s unlikely to happen. For Michigan, they’re 8-3, 6-1 in the Big Ten, and are behind Nebraska for first in the Legends division.
So while today’s game isn’t necessarily determining who will be playing in the national title game, it’s still OSU vs. Michigan and that still means there are a lot of emotions running wild. We all hate Michigan, they all hate us and as always, this is the game of the year for both teams.
But will it be close or will Ohio State run all over the Wolverines? I have no idea. While Ohio State is undefeated and clearly the best team in the Big Ten, they haven’t played anyone of a high-caliber. Plus, it’s not like they’re 11-0 and blew out everyone they’ve played. They’ve played a number of close games where if one or two plays go another way the Buckeyes might be 8-3 or even 7-4 right now.
Meanwhile Michigan has played Alabama. Granted, they got their asses kicked, but it had to be helpful in determining their weakness and how to get better. Plus, you at least have to respect the fact that they had the balls to take on the team that might still be the best in the nation. Who did Ohio State play? Oh yeah, the Cal Golden Bears… woo.
Anyways, I would still favor Ohio State in this game. This is there bowl game after all and it’s being played at The Shoe. Urban Meyer is going to have this team ready to play so that they finish the 2012 season on a positive note. It also helps that the Buckeyes have Braxton Miller on their side. Miller has been the best player in the Big Ten all year-long and really should be in consideration for the Heisman Trophy. If not for the stupid bowl ban, he might be the favorite.
So, look for Ohio State to come out flying on all cylinders and maybe get out to a big lead fueled by the fans and the emotions of the rivalry. But, don’t be surprised if Michigan finds a way to claw their way back into the game and make it a close one before Ohio State does what they do best and escape with the win.
Final Score: Michigan 24 – OSU 27
Oh… and Michigan still sucks.