Angelique S. Chengelis, Matt Charboneau, John Niyo and Bob Wojnowski of The Detroit News offer their predictions on the outcome of Saturday’s Michigan vs. Army game at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor (noon, Fox/950).
►Angelique S. Chengelis: Michigan defensive coordinator Don Brown said he started preparing for Army at the start of spring camp. That’s what facing a service academy triple-option offense can do to a DC. The Black Knights did not look particularly sharp in their season opener against Rice, and Brown and the defense are probably licking their chops. This is about playing disciplined and staying focused against a team that’s going to go for it on fourth down a lot. While everyone is focused on Army’s offense, what about Michigan’s, which clearly has plenty of weapons, as evidenced last week, and might get receiver Donovan Peoples-Jones back while giving freshman running back Zach Charbonnet a bigger chunk of carries. Michigan 45, Army 14
►Matt Charboneau: Preparing to face Army’s option attack can be a headache and there’s no doubt it will cause problems for the Wolverines. However, they have the athletes on defense to keep things from getting out of hand as the offense continues to find its legs. This one could be frustrating for the home crowd early in the game but expect the Wolverines to take control by the second half. Michigan 38, Army 17
►John Niyo: Army's coach, Todd Monken, admits his team is outmanned in every one-on-one matchup. And that's not much of an exaggeration. It's also something this Michigan offense seems much more willing to do this season: Exploiting those matchups with an aggressive, up-tempo approach. That should be enough, as long as the Wolverines clean up some of their Week 1 mistakes. Michigan 38, Army 16
►Bob Wojnowski: Army’s ground-heavy offense gives opponents fits, although it sputtered last week, rushing for 231 yards in a 14-7 win over Rice. Army is unabashedly one-dimensional but this is a dangerous foe, and Shea Patterson will have to be sharp. Just as important, the Wolverines should start feeding the ball to freshman Zach Charbonnet, who looks as good as touted. The Black Knights have a 10-game winning streak and they’ll make Michigan squirm for a while. Michigan 27, Army 7