Notre Dame vs. Michigan fearless prediction and game preview.
Notre Dame vs. Michigan Broadcast
Date: Saturday, October 26
Game Time: 7:30 ET
Venue: Michigan Stadium, Ann Arbor, MI
Notre Dame (6-1) vs. Michigan (5-2) Game Preview
Why Notre Dame Will Win
Can Michigan possibly put together a full 60 minutes of offense against anyone but Rutgers?
It took a little nap against Illinois, it barely showed up against Iowa, and last week, it was overmatched by a jacked up Penn State team until the running game started to work in the second half.
The Wolverines are having a hard time moving the chains, they’re not quite able to get the passing game going on a consistent basis – especially considering the talent at receiver – and now they’re going against a rested Notre Dame team that’s been getting better and better at getting behind the line.
Michigan either needs to get into a groove offensively, or it needs QB Shea Patterson to have time to work. Any semblance of pressure, or any disruption in the backfield, and the Wolverine attack sputtered and stumbles.
On the other side, the Irish running game is back. It took a half a season to get going, but after rolling up 233 yards on Bowling Green, it hammered away for over 300 yards in the win over USC.
Tony Jones might not be Dexter Williams, but he’s emerging as a dependable and explosive star, with three straight 100-yard games averaging close to seven yards per carry. He might not go that on the Michigan defensive front, but he’s enough of a threat to, at the very least, take the pressure and heat off of QB Ian Book.
Why Michigan Will Win
Did the Michigan offense figure it out in the second half against Penn State?
It was as if the team collectively got tired of being mediocre, and decided it was time to make everything work.
Shea Patterson got hot, the running game was pounding away, and everything started to click against a fast, aggressive, and fantastic Nittany Lion D.
Unfortunate late drop aside, Ronnie Bell has been terrific, Tarik Black, Nico Collins, and Donovan Peoples-Jones have had their moments, and the receiving corps has occasionally shown off the talent to explode.
Last week, the USC passing game had some fun against the Irish, with its great receiving corps coming up with several big plays. Georgia’s Jake Fromm was able to hit 77% of his throws, and Virginia’s Bryce Perkins – when he wasn’t getting hammered – was able to put up big passing yards.
The Michigan passing game really is good – in spurts – and if Zach Charbonnet and the running attack can build off of a solid last few weeks, this whole thing might rally be coming together.
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What’s Going To Happen
Of course the narrative is going to once again be all about Jim Harbaugh and whether or not he can win a really big game – forgetting that he won several of those last year.
This should be a fired up group of Wolverines after the way last week’s game ended – the Penn State loss should be more confidence-inspiring than deflating, considering the way the team played in the second half – but there’s one big problem here.
Notre Dame has had two weeks off.
Don’t discount just how much that rest might mean, considering this is Michigan’s sixth straight game including the beatdown at Wisconsin, the ultra-physical battle against Iowa, and the emotional loss last week in the White Out.
The Irish will keep the chains moving, the defense will do enough to get to Patterson, and most of all, there won’t be a slew of big mistakes. Notre Dame is No. 1 in the nation in turnover margin, and it’s not going to start giving the ball away this week.
It’s not going to be fair, but Harbaugh will get hammered on again for losing yet another close game against a great team.
Notre Dame vs. Michigan Prediction, Line
Must See Rating: 5
5: The Kill Team
1: It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown