About The Rivalry
This is the rivalry in college football, one that dates all the way back
to 1897 and has been played every year since 1918. Michigan-Ohio
State almost always has something on the line -- usually a bid to the
Rose Bowl is up for grabs -- and this year in no different with the
winner booking a trip to Pasadena as the Big Ten champ. Michigan
leads the overall series, 57-40-6, and owns 30-18-4 edge in Ann
Arbor where this year's chapter of the rivalry will be played in front
of 107,000 fans in the Big House.
Both teams come into the game with a loss for the first time since 1959, meaning Saturday's noon kickoff lost some luster after Ohio State was upset by Illinois at home last week and Michigan fell to Wisconsin on the road. Despite that the Big Ten is still up for grabs, but can Michigan's senior class beat the Buckeyes for the first time? Lloyd Carr has struggled recently against Ohio State as Jim Tressel owns a 5-1 record vs. Carr since he took over in Columbus.
Are Chad Henne and Mike Hart going to be healthy enough to play? Hart did not go against Wisconsin and Henne barely played. Carr has yet to confirm they'll play, but considering this is their last chance to defeat Ohio State it would be tough to fathom them not playing. Ohio State linebacker James Laurinaitis is yet again one of the top defensive players in the country and up for a number of awards while Chris Wells looks to bounce back from his first sub-100 yard game in his past four outings against the Illini last week.
In 1973, No. 1 Ohio State and No. 4 Michigan met as both teams were undefeated and outscoring their opponents by a ridiculous margin. But in a game that featured little offense, the Buckeyes and Wolverines concluded their November showdown all tied up, 10-10. The two teams finished tied in the Big Ten standings, but Ohio State went on to the Rose Bowl, chosen by the conference's athletic directors to represent the league in Pasadena.