Penn State Preview

Who: Michigan @ Penn State
When: October 18, 2008, 4:30 PM
Beaver Stadium, State College, PA
: Michigan Sports Network
Last Meeting: Michigan 14, Penn State 9
Rankings: Michigan - NR, Penn State - 3

Program Background

Conference: Big Ten Conference
Head Coach: Joe Paterno
Off. Coordinator: Galen Hall
Def. Coordinator: Tom Bradley
2008 Record: 7-0 (3-0)
Last Game: Won @ Wisconsin 48-7

Basically, no mystery here. I did a Q&A with Penn State blogger Zombie Nation this week, and for my take on his carefully selected questions, check it out here.

But to sum it up for you, let me just say that I give Michigan about a 3-5% chance to win this game. ZN asked for a score prediction, and while I tend not to give score predictions out, I did so with relative confidence that Michigan would lose. I said Penn State 31-10.

I consider that a pretty safe pick. It gives the perception that Penn State won comfortably, but Michigan showed at least a little fight. And that's pretty much how I feel about this game.

But ZN's 3rd questions asked if there was any way that Michigan could win this game. I considered it sort of a back-handed question from a very over-confident PSU fan, but given the context of his other questions, and that I respect him for having the word "Nation" in the title of his blog (stand strong!), I gave him my honest opinion.

The ONLY way Michigan wins this game is if the following take place...

• Commit no turnovers
• No mistakes on special teams
• Limit penalties

Make Penn State win the game, don't just hand it over to them.

It would also help if Penn State was way over-confident, and totally looking past us to their trip to Columbus next week. Sadly, I don't think they are. Michigan is a huge game for any team, any year. And when you've gone 9 years without a win against the maize & blue, it makes it that much more important.

I would go through position by position and break down this game for you, but why? The spread is 25. 25! !@#$%^&*!!!!!!!!

If you saw any of the PSU-Wisconsin game last week, then you know what is coming. All I can say is, of course watch the game, but don't cancel those dinner reservations either. You may need some other plans by about 6:00 or so. It could get ugly.

However, like we've seen before, it could be glorious. Nick Sheridan and the rest of this offense could have the game of their lives. The defense could make smart plays and keep PSU from running all over the field. And who knows, by the 4th quarter, it could be a one score game.

Or, it could be the worst defeat in the history of Michigan football. Either way, I will be watching, and it will be memorable.

Go Blue!

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