Michigan Game Preview: Utah Utes

Posted on Posted in Michigan Football

Saturday will be the third game played in the Big House for Michigan, and it will be the toughest team to come to Ann Arbor this season.

The Utah Utes have a talented roster, and a team that has a chance to upset Michigan on the road on Saturday. Utah is a team that scores at will, and Michigan has a secondary that has been suspect at best this year, so an upset isn’t out of the realm of possibility.

Date/Time:
September 20th, 2014
3:30 PM EST

Location:
Michigan Stadium
Ann Arbor, Michigan

What to Expect:
Points
Points will be scored on the regular after kickoff, and it will be the definition of a shootout. That isn’t a knock on Michigan’s defense by any means, their opponent is just competent enough to stay in the game throughout. If Michigan’s defense plays the way they have been playing lately, they should be able to hold off a tough Utah team.

Players to Watch:
Michigan

Tight end Jake Butt was a player that came up big during the absence of wide receiver Devin Funchess last week against Miami (OH) . He’ll be relied upon all afternoon, even if Funchess is still playing, and I believe he will step up again when his number is called. Butt gives Michigan another weapon on offense, and he is a security blanket for quarterback Devin Gardner.

Utah
Travis Wilson is a great quarterback for Utah, and he will bring a big challenge for the Michigan defense. He leads an offense that is ranked third nationally in scoring offense, and his offense scored fifty-plus points in each game they’ve played this season. If Wilson gets it going early, we could be looking at shootout in the Big House.

X-Factor
Jabrill Peppers is the X-Factor today and it’s not close. He enjoyed his first extended field time of his college career last week, and I expect more of the same this week. With a team that is sure to throw the football around all afternoon, expect Peppers to be active in trying to prevent that, and possibly come away with an interception when it’s all said and done.

Prediction:
Michigan 38 – Utah 31
This game will go back and forth all day, and I believe Michigan pulls this one off, although it won’t be easy. Defensive coordinator Greg Mattison has his hands full, but his defense has enough playmakers to hand Utah their first loss of the season.

David Mormino
Best in the World at The Big House Report
David Mormino is a 23 year old journalist for TheBigHouseReport.com. Graduate of Connecticut School of Broadcasting. Previously worked for MLB.com and MLBAM. Podcast Host on WolverineSounds for The Book of Mormino.