If doctors were worried about Mark Dantonio's heart problems before, they might just want to lock him away for the next 7 days until this is all over. Sporting twin 5-0 records, both Michigan and Michigan State are thinking about adding some hardware to the trophy cases in the near future (and no, I'm not talking about that ugly lumberjack thing).
While it might not decide the Big Ten championship, the impeding collision next weekend in Ann Arbor will be the biggest football game this state has seen in a long time.
But keep one hand free to click after the jump...
For Michigan, it's about redemption. Spartan fans haven't stopped talking about their 1000+ day streak of dominance for, well, the last 1000+ days. The Michigan faithful, this writer included, would love nothing more than to see them silenced with yet another late game comeback.
Eager to write off the last two seasons, the Wolverines finally have their savior. Denard Robinson is a blur of dreadlocks and shoelaces that no one and nothing can slow down. The entire offense hinges on his limbs, particularly that pesky left knee. If Robinson isn't 100%, it could be a quiet Saturday night on State and Hoover.
For Michigan State, it's about respect. Other than a so-crazy-it-just-might-work fake field goal to beat Notre Dame in OT, the Spartans are probably the least-talked about 5-0 team in the country. Michigan State's win against Wisconsin yesterday is probably the only "quality win" on either side of next weekend's showdown. The Spartans' goal: make it 3 in a row against the Wolverines for the first time since some British guys wrote a decent song or two, and ride a fairly weak schedule (no OSU, though a big test in Iowa City on Halloween weekend) to a Big Ten title. Preferrably within 60 minutes this time boys.
The Spartans are also getting it done on the ground, relying on a Cerberus-nasty backfield of Edwin Baker, Larry Caper, and Le'Veon Bell*. No matter who lines up in the I, the Michigan defense will have its hands full like well, yesterday. If Kirk Cousins can keep up the uncanny accuracy he showed against Wisconsin (20 for 29, 269 yards), MSU might put up 60. The question isn't whether they will score, however, but rather if they can stop Robinson from putting up 61.
*Side note: Baker, Caper and Bell sounds like the title of a '70s sitcom. Kinda like CHiPs, but less Estrada.
The build up to this rivalry4lyfe is going to be downright incredible. If the mitten has its way, College Gameday might even be on the scene. D4L will definitely do our part to fuel your hate, no matter which color(s) it is. If you're good, we might possibly include a surprise or two along the way. Get ready everyone, it's going to be a great week.