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  • Writer's pictureMark Schlabach

With another Big Ten title to savor, Michigan brings its CFP goals and questions into focus

This happened in Indianapolis for third time from Michigan – but it differed every time.”


The first one being the championship that nobody had anticipated. The other was a coronation of the biggest ten’s best team. And the last one… hmmm the last… it was on a level by itself.


On Saturday, fans were looking forward to the moment when commissioner Tony Petitti exchanged the trophy with coach Jim Harbaugh. It was a little underwhelming, just like Michigan’s 26-0 win over Iowa.As requested by Harbaugh, the trophy was given into hands of the injured olelineman, Zak Zinter by Petitti. Having said that, Harbaugh stepped forward and shouted a word that became a synonym for stoicism among Michigan players after their coach was banned in a game for three games by the Big Ten.


Behind petitti, harbaugh summoned every player whose name he could recall. For not participating in three weeks of post game celebrations after that, surely Harbaugh wouldn’t ignore this one.


Harbaugh says, “This is where we have always wanted to get.” We waited for it; toiled day and night, and one day it actually occurred.


Starting with the first game, the Michigan team let everyone know that this year was not only about Big Ten title. Having reached the semifinal of the National Football Playoffs for two years in a row, their mission statement was to win a national title this time around. On their way all manners of events took place, which meant that it was not possible for some one else to win their third consecutive Big Ten championship.


Things could have gone south for Michigan during this season as it was implicated in scouting and sign stealing scandal. However, the Wolverines settled down, and went 13-0 for the second year in a row. Their dream comes true and they become no. First, when college football playoff committee declares its final rankings on Sunday at 12 PM ET.


It was not surprising to us as a freshman Semaj Morgan. We have achieved this because it is good of us. It was not an easy time, most people would have caved like that.”


Therefore, let make four thoughts for Michiga before it starts with their CFP mission.


Is Michigan the No.1 seed?


The Wolverines were not impressive with their offence but they won against the No. The CFP ranked them as number 16 team and beat other team by 26 point. However, we will see if it is good enough to keep Michigan above Washington with whom they look likely to share the peak place.


In essence, it was about the extent of distinction that the committee perceived around the number one.2 Michigan and No.3 Washington State and if the gap were closed with the win of the Huskies over Oregon. If Michigan is the No. The Rose Bowl is a popular choice for the 1 seeded Wolverines as they are likely to face off against the winner of the coin-flip for the No.4 seed.(I do not know if it is not really flipping a coin.)


I think Michigan did enough to keep up with the Huskies in this particular case, if you consider how good Florida State are.4 seed. Playing the Seminoles in Pasadena might be the best way of getting to the CFP championship game on paper for Michigan.


Wide receiver Cornelius Johnson described their stance as, “we have been in that situation before.” To just do what we have not have done is now.


Is the offense something we ought to be concerned about?


Michigan ended up with a paltry 213 yards against Iowa on the season’s last game – both of which were less than a yard over two touchdown scores. Many of those were because of their defense in FBS, which is among the best in NCAA football. Some was on Michigan also.


Blake corum said that “first of all, Iowa got a strong defense” he also rushed for a total of fifty-two yards tying Anthony Thomas’ career record with two touchdowns in the process. “We made some mistakes. If only I could have run slightly more properly. We had some passing problems and pass protection. it is all things that we can work on. But we have got a month now.’’


Michigan’s pass protection has not been so stable at times and this was magnified when Zinter broke his leg against Ohio State. Centre Drake Nugent was also playing far below full fitness and Iowa managed to get a total of four sacks in addition to pushing McCarthy out of the pocket on numerous instances.F


According to left tackle LaDarius Henderson: It makes it tough for anyone including me without my All-American right guard. “It’s adjustment. We will make it happen.”


It does not matter whether Michigan will face Florida State, Texas or Alabama, the opponent of the team in the College Football Playoffs will simply switch on the film and find out how they can exert pressures on McCarthy. Michigan needs to strengthen its pass protection until Jan. 1.


Morgan’s big-play potential


About three weeks ago, Jay Harbaugh promised Morgan that he would get a chance to return punts if he was able to receive the ball in practice. Morgan believed that he would get chances against Maryland or Ohio State, but they did not come true.


As for the quote, Morgan claimed that she did not pout since she was not angry. I understood.”


Morgan debuted on Saturday night as punt returner, and ran his first official return 87 yards in order to make possible a touchdown. Michigan has many slippery players but none more so than their freshman wide receiver who stopped the longest punt return in the history of the Big Ten championship game by hitting a “hole” or crease and instantly changing direction.


The only negative: In desperation, the Iowa senior Morgan who had run it in came on the field and tried to push Ypsi’s Koen Entringer, an incoming freshman who was giving maximum effort, out of bounds at the three yard line. This still proved to be a large momentum swing and as a result, Michigan had led 10-0 at the end of the first half.


Morgan noted that his teammates and he prepared their own “blocks” before that day. For this reason, all Morgan needed was to sprint towards the “open area”. He saw many spaces at the stadium, which were green.


Sainristil is Michigan’s MVP


However, while accepting the trophy as the game’s most valuable, Mike Sainristil tried to deflect the credit but everyone in the stage knew what happened. Nothing is nearer to Michigan’s defense than Sainristil, who caused two fumbles that were recovered by Wolverines.


According to Harbaugh, “Mikey does make it when a play has to be made, when the magic needs to happen”.


Sainristil played as a corner back as Will Johnson was not available and he made two huge plays by knocking down a reception by running back Jaziun Patterson and also stripped a ball from the hand of quarter back Deacon Hill deep in Iowa territory.


Sainristil really earned himself the MVP trophy when he got first team accolades from the media and a second team one from the league. He may not receive a lot of national recognition, but he has played a significant role in Michigan’s success due to his versatile playmaking ability in key situations.

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