Wisconsin-Michigan Preview: Finally, A Legitimate Test For Wolverines

Wisconsin-Michigan Preview Capsule

No. 8 Wisconsin (4-0, 1-0 Big Ten) at No. 4 Michigan (4-0, 1-0), 3:36 p.m. (ABC)

Line: Michigan by 10½.

Series Record: Michigan leads 49-14-1.

What’s At Stake

Finally, a legitimate test for Michigan. The Wolverines have won their first four games by an average of 38 points, doing exactly what was expected against a weak early schedule, but after it looked like Michigan might not be challenged until a trip to Michigan State in late October, Wisconsin has emerged as a potentially formidable foe. The Badgers went on the road and thumped Michigan State 30-6 last weekend, and they beat LSU earlier.

Key Matchup

Michigan QB Wilton Speight against the Wisconsin defense. The Badgers intercepted Tyler O’Connor three times last week in the rout of Michigan State, and now they have a chance to face another quarterback who is still unproven. Wisconsin’s best chance at an upset is to keep this game low scoring.

Players To Watch

Wisconsin: QB Alex Hornibrook made the first start of his career last weekend and played fine. Now the redshirt freshman has to contend with a resurgent Michigan program in the Big House. And after this, Wisconsin plays Ohio State. The youngster has his work cut out for him.

Michigan: LB Jabrill Peppers is always a threat to do something spectacular, and his game-breaking ability on special teams could be particularly crucial if both offenses are struggling to move the ball this week.

Facts & Figures

This is the first matchup between Michigan and Wisconsin with both teams in the top 10. … Michigan has scored at least 45 points in four straight games for the first time since 1947. … Wisconsin has won eight straight road games, the longest streak in school history. … Wisconsin is third in the nation in time of possession. The Badgers have had the ball an average of 37:01 per game.

Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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