Michigan vs Michigan State 2010 has high stakes for the rivals. The Michigan vs Michigan State 2010 showdown is the only one putting two unbeaten, top 25 teams against each other today. This seemed very unlikely weeks ago, as the Wolverines and Spartans were considered middle of the pack teams at best. Yet both schools have made headlines with stunning wins and big plays, shooting themselves into Big Ten and BCS contention. But the winner will take a bigger step to prove their hot start is for real.
The Wolverines and Spartans are in the lower part of the top 20, but a win should shoot them up into the top 15. After that, the sky is the limit if they keep this up, even though the odds are still against them.
Today’s battle serves as an early elimination game. The winner will be right up there with Ohio State and Iowa in the Big Ten, while the loser will be knocked down to earth. The Wolverines know how costly a loss in this game can be, after last year’s overtime loss to the Spartans doomed them to a 5-7 collapse.
But the Wolverines didn’t have Denard Robinson last year, as he continues to rise up the Heisman rankings. His strengths, and the home field advantage, makes them the favorite over the Spartans today. Yet the Spartans are riding their own emotional high, after their trick play with over Notre Dame, and after their upset of Wisconsin.
Today could be a Cinderella comeback for Spartans coach Mike Dantonio, as he is coaching from the press box. He called the play of the year against Notre Dame hours before suffering a mild heart attack. But the Michigan vs Michigan State showdown could have the latest Hollywood twist, if Dantonio leads the Spartans to another win.
Even if the Wolverines stay perfect, this is only the start of their difficult October. Next week, they host fellow Big Ten favorite Iowa, then travel to Penn State two weeks later. If the Wolverines are perfect after that stretch, they could be a major factor in the Big Ten and BCS.
Those kind of thoughts are a long way off for both teams, although the battle should help prove if they are warranted. Both programs have started hot in September and early October before, only to meet with mediocrity later. With Ohio State and Iowa still considered Big Ten favorites, the Michigan schools still have a lot to prove to the nation.
Michigan and Michigan State’s renewed rivalry may be the most important in a long time, or it could be a red herring in the Big Ten/BCS races. Fans will get a better idea starting at 3:30 pm est on ABC.
SI.com- “Saturday Storylines: Week 6”