Michigan has completely flipped the script on Ohio State
"I don’t think they wanted it like how I wanted it," Michigan WR Roman Wilson said of the Buckeyes.
ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Transport yourself back to 2020, hard as that may be for all of us who wish to never re-live that godforsaken year.
Remember, if you can, the feeling that came with watching Michigan and Ohio State play football back then.
Michigan went 2-4 that year. Ohio State won its fourth straight Big Ten title.
The Wolverines canceled their game against the Buckeyes because of a COVID-19 outbreak. There were, shall we say, more than a few whispers about Michigan waving the white flag in the rivalry.
Jim Harbaugh then signed an incentive-laden extension that included a paycut. Much of the school’s thinking in keeping Harbaugh — who was 0-5 against his rival, losing by an average of 19 points per contest — was that he was a Michigan Man who at least ran a clean program.
Ohio State? The Buckeyes were leading the charge against then-Big Ten commissioner Kevin Warren, going against public decorum and demanding that a season be played during a pandemic.
All of which brings us back to the Big House on Saturday, where interim Michigan coach Sherrone Moore called an aggressive, on-point game plan in a 30-24 win; where Rod Moore picked off Kyle McCord with 25 seconds left to end Ohio State’s upset hopes; where 110,615 fans went into a frenzy after their school beat the Buckeyes for the third straight time; where the Wolverines put themselves on the doorstep of College Football Playoff for the third straight year.
Re-read all of the above if you must. It is a lot to digest.
Three years is all it takes for one school to completely flip the script on its rival.
Three years is all it takes for a coach championed for his off-field values to get suspended for the biggest game of his life — the sixth game he has missed this season as part of two separate suspensions for separate alleged NCAA rules violations.
Three years is all it takes for a different Big Ten blueblood to approach the awkward dance next week of likely accepting a trophy from a commissioner — this time Tony Petitti — whom it has challenged in the public sphere.