Preview: Michigan vs. Indiana

Preview: Michigan vs. Indiana


November 16, 2018

RUSH OFFENSE vs. INDIANA RUSH DEFENSE

Michigan is #31 in rush yards (215 per game) and yards per carry (5.02). They’re led by Karan Higdon, who topped 1,000 yards (1,005 to be exact) for the season, the first time a Michigan running back has hit 1,000 yards since 2011. Indiana is #85 in rushing defense (181 yards allowed/game) and #87 in yards allowed per carry (4.58). Senior strong safety Jonathan Crawford (6’2″, 196 lbs.) leads the team in tackles with 55, and it’s generally not a good thing when a safety leads a team in that category. In fact, three of the top four tacklers on the squad are defensive backs, with the lone exception being senior linebacker Dameon Willis, Jr. (6’1″, 225), who’s second with 51. Sophomore hybrid space player Marcelino Ball (6’0″, 222) leads the team with 6.5 tackles for loss. Michigan’s offensive line struggled a little bit against Rutgers last week, so there’s no guarantee that this will be a walkover, but it should be a decent day for the Wolverines.
Advantage: Michigan

Hit the jump for the rest of the preview.

PASS OFFENSE vs. INDIANA PASS DEFENSE

Michigan is #87 in passing yards (207 per game) but #15 in passing efficiency. Quarterback Shea Patterson is completing 67% of his passes for 8.5 yards/attempt, 17 touchdowns, and 3 interceptions. Wide receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones, wide receiver Nico Collins, and tight end Zach Gentry each have between 26-30 receptions for 392-447 yards, and Peoples-Jones leads the team with 7 touchdown catches. Michigan is #31 in sacks allowed (15). Indiana is #95 in sacks (17), led by Ball’s 2.5. The Hoosiers are #73 in passing defense (233 yards allowed/game) and #90 in passing efficiency defense. Freshman Bryant Fitzgerald leads the team with 3 interceptions, but eight other guys have 1 each; Indiana is #26 overall in team interceptions. The Hoosiers aren’t very impressive up front, but they’re decent in coverage and pretty well coached on the back end.
Advantage: Michigan

RUSH DEFENSE vs. INDIANA RUSH OFFENSE

Michigan is #13 in rushing defense (104 yards allowed/game) and #11 in yards allowed per carry (3.11). Middle linebacker Devin Bush, Jr. leads the team with 61 tackles, followed by safety Tyree Kinnel (53) and defensive end Chase Winovich (51). Winovich leads the squad with 12 tackles for loss. Indiana is #82 in rushing offense (156 yards/game) and #67 in yards per carry (4.35). Freshman running back Stevie Scott (6’2″, 236) dominates the carries in the backfield with 178 for 894 yards (5.02 per carry) and 8 touchdowns. Their offensive line is middle-of-the-pack in Football Outsiders’ advanced stats. Michigan can generally get after just about anybody in the running game, and Indiana isn’t as high-tempo as they were a few years ago when the speed of the offense gave the Wolverines trouble. This should be a positive matchup for the Wolverines.
Advantage: Michigan

PASS DEFENSE vs. INDIANA PASS OFFENSE

Michigan is #1 in passing defense (116 yards allowed/game) and passing efficiency defense, the latter by a wide margin (12 points ahead of #2 Mississippi State). Opposing teams are completing just 47.3% of their passes for 4.8 yards/attempt. Last week Rutgers avoided taking sacks by throwing mainly screens and quick swing passes. Michigan is #16 in sacks, led by pass rush specialist Joshua Uche with 7. Indiana will throw it quick, too, and they’re #44 in passing offense (255 yards/game), along with being #78 in passing efficiency. Quarterback Peyton Ramsey is completing just over 67% of his passes, much like Patterson, but Ramsey’s 17 interceptions have come with 8 more interceptions (11 total) and 2 fewer yards per attempt (6.5). The Hoosiers have seven receivers with between 23 and 35 receptions, and the most productive guy has been 6’4″, 225 lb. wideout Donavan Hale (31 catches, 425 yards, 6 TD). Indiana is #76 in sacks allowed, despite the fact that Ramsey is a pretty quick, scrambly guy (266 yards and 4 TD on the year). Ramsey might make some plays with his feet, and there are some dangerous guys in the passing game, but the #1 passing defense in the country should win out.
Advantage: Michigan

ROSTER NOTES

  • Indiana players from the state of Michigan include: Detroit Country Day DT Christian Love
  • Indiana offensive coordinator Mike DeBord was an offensive coordinator at Michigan under Lloyd Carr
  • Indiana assistant head coach/running backs coach Mike Hart is Michigan’s all-time leading rusher
  • Indiana quarterbacks coach Nick Sheridan played quarterback at Michigan

LAST TIME THEY PLAYED…

  • In 2017, Michigan won in overtime, 27-20
  • Karan Higdon had 25 carries for 200 yards and 3 TD, including the game-winner in OT
  • John O’Korn averaged 2.9 yards/attempt as he went 10/20 for 58 yards, 0 TD, and 0 INT
  • Peyton Ramsey was 20/41 for 178 yards, 1 TD, and 2 INT

PREDICTIONS

  • Michigan 31, Indiana 17
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3 comments

  1. Comments: 997
    Joined: 1/19/2016
    je93
    Nov 16, 2018 at 10:20 AM

    I don’t think Indiana will score that much, but do think we’ll shut things down early: 31-10

  2. Lanknows
    Comments: 3931
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    Lanknows
    Nov 16, 2018 at 11:56 AM

    Thanks for the preview. It’s a great year to be a Michigan fan. Go Blue.

  3. Comments: 864
    Joined: 8/11/2015
    WindyCityBlue
    Nov 17, 2018 at 9:37 AM

    Playing at home, with a clear advantage in every area, 31-17 would be a pretty disappointing result. Hopefully we’ll do a bit better than that, but at the same time, let’s not have key starters playing deep into the fourth quarter.

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