Sunday, October 15, 2006

Michigan vs. OSU: past battles of the undefeated teams

With Michigan's win over Penn State and Ohio State's win over Michigan State this past Saturday, the talk has increased regarding the possiblity of both the Wolverines and the Buckeyes being undefeated when they meet for their showdown on November 18th. The two titans of the Big 10 have met twice before in the modern era (defined as when Bo Schembechler began coaching Michigan in 1969) when both teams came into the game undefeated and untied. The first time was in 1970 when 9-0 Michigan traveled to Columbus, OH to take on the 8-0 Buckeyes. (See post of May 24, 2006). Michigan was ranked #4 and the Buckeyes were ranked #5 heading into the game. Ohio State won a tough game 20-9. In 1973, Michigan was 10-0 with the #4 ranking and OSU was 9-0 with the #1 ranking when they faced off in Ann Arbor in their annual season ending showdown. (See post of June 11, 2006). The game was a classic and ended in a 10-10 tie. As the teams finished as the co-Big 10 champions, the Big Ten Athletic Directors had to vote to determine which team to send to the Rose Bowl. They voted by a 6-4 margin to send OSU to the Rose Bowl and Michigan stayed home as back then only the conference champion advanced to a bowl game.

As November 18th approaches the anticipation will continue to build for the matchup between the big two of the Big 10. Click here for a link to the Michigan Bentley Library page regarding the history of the OSU/UM rivalry. It includes a countdown clock to this year's game which currently stands at 33 days. At least this year, there will not be a tie game and there will not be a vote of the conference's Athletic Directors. It will be decided on the field in the Horseshoe. Go Blue!


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