Thursday, December 2, 2021

Iowa and The B1G Championship

Let's move on to Iowa because this is really big (no pun).  Michigan has reached an incredible #2 in the CFP.  What a massive accomplishment.  It doesn't have to end there.

Iowa is good but lucky to be 10-2.  Their biggest win is against Minnesota.  (EDIT:  That is what I read but they also beat Penn State and looked good doing it.)  I don't think they can stop Michigan's running attack and M's defense should be able to handle the Hawkeye offense.

Iowa does not have the explosive playmakers--Hutchinson, Haskins, D. Hill, C. Johnson, et al.--that Michigan does. That is why they have looked worse at the end of the season than they did in the beginning.  Their primary weapon is "solidness."  They win through attrition.

This is Michigan's chance and this one is going to easier than anything that may follow.  Michigan is peaking and I don't see them blowing it now.  They are not going to be attritted and that is not a word.

For fans and yours truly, it is a bonus game.  It's gonna be a great Saturday night.  It is is like the bowl games of years past--a celebration of the season and a competitive game too.  

Even Michigan-Georgia, if all the stars align, won't be as fun as this one.  Wherever it is played it will be away and tense too.  That game may not end as well.

Michigan 35 Iowa 17

Brian Cook is the master at this.  Not so much his post-game columns anymore (he doesn't do the UFRs), but he is guy I will tune-into for game previews when I just want to see how someone else thinks.  If you remove the pig reference early on it is nearly perfect.  The only other major flaw is quoting yourself or your own staff; sorry, I do it for his current take.

He has an entertaining knack provided he doesn't take too many, drink too many, or otherwise float away.  The key he says is McNamara against the cagey Iowa secondary.  That is worth learning, a challenge for the offense, and a winnable battle.

"One hand on the statue" could refer to the Iowa quarterback standing in the pocket.  The CFP will determine which stars lead their great teams; I still don't see Aiden Hutchinson winning the Heisman.

Brian is helpful in putting Kirk Ferentz and the Iowa history--same today--into perspective.  They will work hard at trick plays but there are major patterns and tendencies.  Smash-mouth Michigan is in an enviable position address them.  

Aside from a brain to synthesize the stats, he doesn't offer insider information (Blake Corum is never mentioned).  He also does not hint at a choking Michigan and I hope he is right.

I haven't done this all year because he is resolutely boring, by Magnus/Thunder is still here.  Mgoblog already covered the gist of the stats.  I think Michigan could blow it out a little more than his prediction.

These are the two best and most experienced Michigan bloggers.  They are confident,

We all know Michigan travels well and Iowa is a good match-up that way too; I think the game will turn into a festive Michigan atmosphere.  No more Ohio in the Big Ten footprint.  Particularly if Michigan is healthy (i.e., Corum), it could get ugly.

I'll stand by my prediction that it will be a Michigan win and a great finale to the regular season. 

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