Staff Predictions: Michigan Wolverines Football at Nebraska
Quick, raise your hand if you had Michigan at 5-0 and No. 8 in the country when you were making your predictions for the season.
If you're raising yours — well, you're probably a slappy (no offense).
That said ... former staffers Austin Fox and Matt Pargoff might have. Fox was usually 16 Busch Lights in when making his staff picks (which amounts to about four 'real' beers, but enough for the lightweight to get his maize and blue pom pons out), while 'Sleepyguy' (Pargoff) might have picked the Wolverines to lose once during his entire tenure at The Wolverine.
Both, though, made plenty of great contributions to our site, perhaps none bigger than Matt's move after the infamous 2005 Alamo Bowl loss to the 'Huskers (aka the "Sun Belt official" fiasco, followed by the "Carol Frost incident"). With the angry mob approaching the message boards with torches and pitchforks from all sides and the — well, overzealous Cornhuskers fans doing drive-bys in their combines (including Mrs. Frost, aka "Scottie's mom," whose postgame letter to us is now legendary (and yes, it's still real, and still spectacular)), Pargoff pulled the plug on the message boards.
TheWolverine.com boards went dark for 24 hours thanks to one of Matt's last, brave acts for us.
You would think we'd learn to leave well enough alone after Mrs. Frost's admonishment, but no — our subscribers won't let us. As one posted on The Fort, our premium message board, not only did Frost steal a portion of the 1997 national championship, but one of our John Borton's sweaters went missing from his dresser around the same Bowl season.
It showed up on the post-holiday card the family sent us a week after the Alamo Bowl loss.
Coincidence? We think not.
So, the quest for revenge (and to reclaim JB's sweater) continues Saturday night against a Nebraska team that has life. They're playing good football, should probably be 5-1 and have a dynamic playmaker at quarterback in Adrian Martinez.
Say what you want about his inconsistency — he's dangerous, and he's completing 67 percent of his passes this year against solid competition, for the most part.
Congratulations to our Doug Karsch, last week's staff picks winner and the only one with the foresight to pick Michigan to win at Wisconsin. This week's winner gets to write this column the next time Frost faces Michigan with his team (anyone's guess as to which school he'll be coaching then).
CHRIS BALAS: It's still hard to figure this Michigan team out, but we do know one thing — they're mentally tough, and they play together. The Wolverines still haven't played great competition this year, and the Cornhuskers don't qualify, either.
Win this one, though, and they don't need to apologize to anyone, for anything (not that they did anyway. You play the schedule in front of you). MICHIGAN 23, NEBRASKA 16
JOHN BORTON: Nebraska won't be easy, but the 'Huskers have lost close ones more often than Scottie Frost's Mama has berated his oppressors. He's about to build his lead. Michigan 27, Nebraska 20
CLAYTON SAYFIE: Michigan might be the best team Nebraska has played all year. The Huskers have momentum, having just beaten lousy Northwestern, but so does a confident Michigan squad that dismantled Wisconsin in its own house.
I’ll give the 3.5 points, and take the Wolverines. Michigan 31, Nebraska 21
ANTHONY BROOME: Who would have thought a month ago that the Nebraska game might pose more of a threat to Michigan than Wisconsin? Not many. However, that's the situation we find ourselves in ahead of Saturday night's tilt in Lincoln. Michigan is hungry and out to keep piling up wins to prove their reboot this year is legitimate. Nebraska is starved for a signature win under Scott Frost and is playing arguably the best football of his time there.
There is a lot more to lose for Michigan on Saturday than Nebraska and Adrian Martinez provides a new challenge with his dynamic playmaking ability at quarterback. It did not go well for Michigan the last time they played a night game in a cornfield (Iowa, 2016) and the Huskers are going to unload everything they have. The Wolverines will survive and advance to the bye week unscathed, but not before an early-October scare. Michigan 27, Nebraska 21
DOUG SKENE: I've watched enough Nebraska games the last couple years to know one thing for sure ... Nebraska plays very hard and withgreat effort. Combine the consistent effort with a sauced up night crowd, ands Michigan will have its hands full.
Michigan must make Adrian Martinez uncomfortable and keep a fence around him to prevent the run. I think Michigan's defense is up to the task. Michigan's offense can control this game with the offensive line with sustained drives that will wear out the defensive front and their crowd.
Sorry Coach Frost, the 1997 Team would have beat your butts! Michigan 34, Nebraska 13
DOUG KARSCH: Nebraska's reshuffled offensive line has some questions. With a true freshman left with one career start, a left guard with one career start and a right tackle that has five career starts but just flipped from LT to RT -- "hey guys meet Mr Hutchinson and Mr Ojabo." Not an easy task.
If the Nebraska O-Line passes that test, they will have earned it. Nebraska's run defense isn't Wisconsin's ... unless it is. The last two weeks they have held MSU and NW to 108 yards rushing on 56 carries. The QB match-up: Adrian Martinez definitely makes plays, but has 39 career turnovers, which is 39 more than Cade McNamara. Michigan 26, Nebraska 14
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