Kickoff for the 108th meeting between the Spartans and Wolverines is scheduled for 3:30 pm, and will air on ESPN, and the networks signature show College GameDay, will air live from Michigan Stadium at 9 am Saturday morning.
This is my 40th Sparty-Meeeechigan game as a fan, starting back as a 16 year old new fan of the Wolverines in 1976.
The Wolverines beat Sparty that day, 42-10, in front of 104, 211 at The Big House.
Between 1976 and 2007... 32 total games, the Wolverines beat the Spartans all but 6 times... 1978, 1984, 1987, 1990, 1995, and 2001.
That's a 26-6 record for Michigan vs MSU in that time period.
Oh, how the times have changed.
Michigan State beat the Wolverines in 2008, their first win in Ann Arbor since 1990.
MSU won again in 2009...and again in 2010.
It was the first time State had won three straight vs UM since the mid 1960s.
The Wolverines fired Rich Rodriguez, hired Brady Hoke...and lost to State again in 2011.
Michigan broke that 4 game losing streak in 2012, 12-10, at home in Michigan Stadium, but have lost the past two games, in 2013 and 2014 (both games in Spartan Stadium).
Hoke was fired in the off season... 1-3 vs Sparty, following Rodriguez's 0-3 mark againat the boys from East Lansing.
Time to renew, refresh, and re-establish Michigan Football.
In 1984, playing at Spartan Stadium, Michigan lost the game...and Sophomore quarterback Jim Harbaugh.
Harbaugh suffrred a broken arm in that game, and Michigan fell to 6-6, Bo Schembechler's worst year ever coaching UM.
Harnaugh came back for his final 2 years, leading the Wolverines go a 10-1-1 record, and a Fiesta Bowl win over Nebraska.
In 1986 Hatbaugh, now a Senior, led Michigan to the Big Ten Championship, a 10-1 regular season...two straight wins over MSU.
Harbaugh was the Big Ten MVP an All-American quarterback, and a first round draft pick in 1987 by the Chicago Bears.
On Saturday Michigan hosts the Spartans, winners of 6 of the past 7 games, and Jim Harbaugh will lead the Wolverines out of the Michigan Stadium tunnel to stop the bleeding.
Michigan is a great defensive team, and will have to play at their best to beat State, led by Senior QB Connor Cook.
Michigan is the favorite to win the game, by around 10 points...how anyone on Las Vegas came up with Sparty as the underdog is beyond me.
State is ranked ahead of Michigan in the polls...State is 7th, UM is 12th...and yes, MSU has won 6 of 7, including 3 times at Michigan.
How can Michigan be the favorite...how?
The reason is Jim Harbaugh.
Look, I love Michigan Football, I love Coach Harbaugh, and yes, the game is being played at Michigan, who's defense has shutout three straight teams, including Big Ten opponents Maryland and Northwestern.
Jake Rudock leads the Michigan offense...he's the man...Coach Harbaugh has stood by his QB...and Rudock has improved every game.
Playing Sparty is never easy, and this year is no different.
So, again, we have the usual, a hard hitting game between the two big gime State of Michigan schools... Sparty and Meeeechigan.
The winning team has rushed the ball for more yards thatn thd losing team something like 38 of the last 44 years...and bith teams have terrific defensive teams, especially Michigan, who's defense is ranked, I believe, #1 in college football.
I'm not good at predictions, especially when it comes to my teams...I'm always going to pick my teams to win.
I never expect Michigan to lose a football game...that doesn't mean I don't understand that they can't win... I lnow they have to lose football games.
The past 8 years since the retirement of Lloyd Carr have been horrible for all Wolverines fans...an understatement to say the least.
I know Michigan can beat Michigan State tomorrow... I expect them to beat the Spartans tomorrow...but...10+ points?
I know the Wolverines defense is awesome this year, and I expect them to play well tomorrow vs State...and I can't believe, as much as I want, to see them handle, even shutout MSU, I can't see that happening.
What I can see is a well fought, tough football game between two old rivals... Paul Bunyan's trophy on the line...down to the final 5 minutes.
I NEVER pick my Wolverines to lose...never!
The bad play is over...the Wolverines are back...
MEEEECHIGAN 23, Sparty 16.
Have a great day of football tomorrow...party reasonably at the game...cheer on the Maize and Blue as Coach Harbaugh wins his first game vs Michigan State.
Hail to the Victors Valiant!
Hail to the Conquering Heroes...
...Hail, Hail, to Michigan... the Champions of the West!