Michigan Wolverines Football News: September 15, 2009

Brendan GillespieCorrespondent ISeptember 16, 2009

I think this may be the most enjoyable Michigan newsletter I've written to date.  We're looking good!!  All hail Tate!

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The Forcier is with Michigan


"In Ann Arbor, I personally experienced the best Michigan game I have ever attended. The Wolverines were up 11 in the fourth quarter and in a flash, were down 31-34. With under three minutes to go, Notre Dame decided to pass the ball. Not a short completion to waste time, but deep passes that stopped the clock!

I am still waiting for Notre Dame and their coaching staff to explain this strategy. Forcier and the rest of the offense got the ball back and hit WR Mathews for a big gain. Tate Forcier scrambled and threw a game-winning TD pass to WR Savoy, but he dropped it.

The Irish went wild and there was time for one more chance at a touchdown. Forcier found Greg Mathews in the end zone for the official game-winning score to give the Wolverines a 38-34 win over rival Notre Dame.

This was a huge win for the boys in blue. They could definitely fall and fade from the top, but as of right now, everyone is smiling in Michigan(except MSU fans). Rich Rodriguez couldn't have been happier with the outcome, and now everyone is believing in him and his system.

Freshman Forcier is on the top of the world and can only get better. The Wolverines have Eastern Michigan and Indiana next. If they don't overlook those games the Michigan Wolverines could be looking at 4-0 going to East Lansing.

What a turnaround. I don't think it is safe to say Michiganis back. It is safe to say, however, that this is a much, much improved team, and are Forcier to be reckoned with."

From the Buckeyes:

Weekly Wolverine Watch: Undefeated, and picking up steam


"COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Are you sure Michigan isn't better than Ohio State right this moment? Maybe not more talented, maybe not better a few weeks from now. But maybe better right now, especially with the way the Wolverines are running their offense vs. the way the Buckeyes are running their offense?

Yes, the Buckeyes dealing with USC's defense for was a more difficult test than the Wolverines facing Notre Dame's defense, and Ohio State did nearly beat a top-five team. But since the Buckeyes beat the Wolverines in their No. 1 vs. No. 2 showdown in the final game of the 2006 regular-season, Buckeyes' fans have had good reason to feel superior. Michigan was ranked No. 5 in the preseason in 2007, ahead of the No. 11 Buckeyes, but that ended when Michiganstarted 0-2 with losses to Appalachian State and Oregon, and Ohio State easily held the upper hand. Then came last year's 3-9 season.

Now this. Maybe a little doubt is creeping into the analysis of college football's greatest rivalry.

Michigan ranks third in the Big Ten and 32nd in the nation in total offense with 434 yards per game, while Ohio State ranks last and 92nd, with 314 yards."

Freshmen highlight Saturday's big games


"Matt Barkley may lead USC to the national title game this year. Who knows? Someday he may even win a Heisman Trophy. This fall, his coaches have gushed about his talents and poise, comparing him to star QBs ranging from Peyton Manning to Jay Cutler to Tom Brady. On Saturday night, Barkley led a fourth-quarter, game-winning touchdown drive that began at his own 14-yard line, and did it in front of the largest crowd in Ohio State history. Calling him impressive would be an understatement. Still, the true freshman quarterback from Southern California that I thought was the star of Week 2 was Michigan's Tate Forcier.

There is a fascinating juxtaposition here: Whereas Barkley is a sturdy 6-2, 230 pounds, Forcier is a wiry 6 feet and maybe 185. When people first see Barkley in person, they remark how solid he looks. They're wowed. Like out of Central Casting wowed. When people first set eyes on Forcier, they find him even smaller than they expected. Forget wiry; maybe scrawny. Barkley's teammates see him as "the Golden Boy." Forcier's peg him as goofy. Yet so far, the kid has been an absolute strongman, lifting the Wolverines program out of the muck.

As for those allegations of players being overworked and of a fractured fan base chaffing about whether Rich Rodriguez is the wrong guy for Michigan? Um, who exactly is grousing now?"

Have the Irish and Buckeyes Peaked?

Close Losses in Week Two Add the Element of Fear to the Notre Dame and Ohio State Seasons


"Although they almost never play each other, Notre Dame and Ohio Statehave much in common: Midwestern roots, national followings, seven Heismans, one mortal enemy. Unfortunately for both, a new element has joined the list: fear."

Michigan returns to AP Top 25 after thriller


What we learned in the Big Ten: Week 2


"1. Michiganis back -- The Wolverines are young and not very deep at several spots, but they're extremely resilient and clearly on the right track under second-year head coach Rich Rodriguez. True freshman Tate Forcier delivered a performance to remember against a good Notre Dame team, completing 6 of 7 passes for 56 yards and a touchdown on the game's decisive drive. Rodriguez's offense has returned to form behind Forcier, running back Brandon Minor and a much improved line. Michigan has closed the book on last season's 3-9 disaster and could make a serious push for the Big Ten title."

Michigan Football: Two Weeks Gone, An Optimistic Look Ahead


Michigan stuns No. 18 Notre Dame 38-34


Game Stats:

Michigan 14 3 7 14 – 38

MICH– Minor, Brandon 2 yd run (Olesnavage, Jason kick)

ND – TAUSCH, NICK 34 yd field goal

MICH– Stonum, Darryl 94 yd kickoff return (Olesnavage kick)

ND – TATE, GOLDEN 4 yd pass from CLAUSEN, JIMMY (TAUSCH kick)

ND – FLOYD, MICHAEL 11 yd pass from CLAUSEN (TAUSCH kick)

ND – TAUSCH 42 yd field goal

MICH– Olesnavage 39 yd field goal

MICH– Koger, Kevin 3 yd pass from Forcier, Tate (Olesnavage kick)

MICH– Forcier 31 yd run (Olesnavage kick)

ND – TATE 21 yd pass from CLAUSEN (pass failed)

ND – ALLEN 8 yd run (ALLEN rush)

MICH– Mathews, Greg 5 yd pass from Forcier (Olesnavage kick)

Notre Dame knocked out of Top 25


"Michigan's victory, coming on a touchdown pass by freshman Tate Forcier with 11 seconds left, is the most significant of Rich Rodriguez's one-plus seasons as coach. And moving into the national rankings capped a tumultuous and exhilarating three weeks in Ann Arbor for the program.

The week before Michigan opened the season with a 31-7 victory at the Big House against Western Michigan, Rodriguez was rocked by a newspaper report that anonymously quoted current and former players alleging NCAA violations by the coaching staff.

Now Michiganis back in the national rankings, a place fans of college football's winningest program have grown accustomed to occupying, and headed for a soft spot on the schedule. The Wolverines play Eastern Michigan and Indiana at home before a trip to East Lansing for rival Michigan State on Oct. 3.

The forecast for the Wolverines is looking good. Just ask Forcier, who said this when asked if the Notre Dame victory proved that Michigan is really back as a Big Ten power: "Yeah, I really think it does.""

MIami NW star OL Torrian Wilson commits to Stanford over Michigan


Investigating the rivalry that used to be THE Rivalry: Notre Dame and Michigan



    U-M Lands 3-Star Safety and Previous OSU Baseball Commit

    Michigan Wolverines Football logo
    Michigan Wolverines Football

    U-M Lands 3-Star Safety and Previous OSU Baseball Commit

    via TheMichiganInsider.com

    Baker Wasn't Taking Any S--t from Cowherd

    College Football logo
    College Football

    Baker Wasn't Taking Any S--t from Cowherd

    Joseph Zucker
    via Bleacher Report

    Former 5-Star WR Robertson to Transfer from Cal

    College Football logo
    College Football

    Former 5-Star WR Robertson to Transfer from Cal

    Timothy Rapp
    via Bleacher Report