Less than two weeks from now, the 2012 college football season will officially kick off—with the first marquee matchup on the season’s opening weekend pitting the highest-ranked squads from the SEC and Big Ten against one another in Cowboys Stadium in Dallas.
The battle between No. 2 Alabama and No. 8 Michigan will feature plenty of intriguing subplots, but the biggest may be whether or not the Wolverines are ready to topple what is currently the sport’s premier powerhouse.
Although Nick Saban will field perhaps his least experienced team since taking over the Crimson Tide program in 2007, the Tide’s roster still projects to be one of the nation’s most talented teams.
Meanwhile, Brady Hoke returns quarterback Denard Robinson and 15 other starters off a team that went 11-2 and captured the program’s first BCS bowl victory since 2000—which ironically enough, came against Alabama.
Despite the momentum the preseason favorites in the Big Ten bring into this non-conference showdown, the weaknesses of their team seem to play right into the hands of the defending national champions.
Here are four reasons why Alabama will beat Michigan without breaking a sweat.