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Preview: UNLV at #3 Michigan


Michigan Stadium, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
"The Big House" Photo Credit Ken Lund via Flickr




The University of Nevada Las Vegas travels to Ann Arbor to take on the #3 team in the country, the University of Michigan in this Week 2 college football matchup. The Wolverines come into Saturday’s matchup as a big favorite giving up 36.5 points to UNLV. The Saturday game will be Michigan’s annual Military Appreciation Game, to thank and honor all the active military personnel and veterans of the American Armed Forces.



 

Broadcast information:


UNLV at Michigan will kick off at 3:30 pm EST from Ann Arbor Michigan on CBS. The CBS team calling the game will be Brad Nessler who will be taking care of the play-by-play, Gary Danielson as the color commentator and Jenny Dell taking care of the sideline.

Fans can listen live on the radio, the Michigan broadcast will be on WWJ AM 950. For the UNLV broadcast it will be on ESPN 1100am or 100.9 out of Las Vegas



 

What's at Stake, What to Expect:


This game brings in two undefeated teams both having blowout wins in their previous week's matchups. Michigan played at home, beating ECU 30-3. UNLV opened their season with a home game, beating the Bryant Bulldogs 44-14.


Michigan comes into the second game of the year as a big 36.5 favorite, meaning Michigan should come out with the win. This game for the Wolverines is just the second step on their 12-step journey to get to their third straight Big 10 championship game. Right off the start, Michigan needs to show UNLV, who is the better team and get their starters out as early as possible to help avoid any injuries. A loss here for Michigan would end any chance of returning to their third college football playoff.


Michigan’s offensive coordinator Sherrone Moore is back from suspension, and he will look to remain focused on having a balanced attack. Michigan QB, J.J. McCarthy will be looking to move the ball around more this week. Wilson and Johnson are set as WR 1 and 2, and Moore will look to see who steps up to become J.J. McCarthy's third wide receiver option. Michigan recorded zero sacks last week so look for defensive coordinator, Jesse Minter to dial up the pressure in this game.




UNLV will head to Ann Arbor for their first road game of the year coming in as such a big underdog UNLV can play with a nothing to lose attitude. Even if UNLV loses this game, their goal of winning the Moutain West will still be right in front of them. The good news for UNLV fans, with their team being such a big underdog, they can enter the game without any pressure or expectations and sometimes those teams are the most dangerous to face.


Last week UNLV gave up 409 yards in their game, look for Mike Scherer to focus on his passing defense after giving up 230 in the air of the 409. UNLV starting QB, Doug Brumfield only attempted 18 passes last week, if UNLV can’t show a more balanced offense and keep Michigan guessing it could be a long day for the Rebels.


 

Key players - Michigan

The defensive line played as a group will be key in how this game unfolds. Michigan’s defense was unable to record a sack in the game with ECU a week ago. Defensive coordinator, Jesse Minter is back from head coaching duties and will be focused on making sure this group shows improvement in the game.

Key Players - UNLV

UNLV is going to need to show they are willing to throw the ball making wide receivers, Jacob De Jesus, Senika McKie, and Dominic Gicinto along with tight end, Christian Earls, key in this contest.


 

Key matchups:

Michigan defensive line vs. UNLV offensive line

Michigan is going to be looking to get after the quarterback in this game, after not being able to put up a sack last week. UNLV's offensive line is going to need to slow them down or it is going to be a rough day for QB, Doug Brummfield.


UNLV running game vs. Michigan run defense.

The Rebels are going to be looking to control their time of possession and establish a run attack. The Rebels are a run-first team, If Michigan’s run defense can force the Rebels to pass more than they want this game could get out of hand fast.


Michigan vs Michigan

In college football usually the team with the most talent wins, and Michigan has more talent at all positions on the field. Realistically if Michigan plays smart football, doesn’t turn the ball over, and doesn’t take costly penalties, they should win this game convincingly. The only way that UNLV could win this game is if Michigan beats themselves by doing everything mentioned in the lines above.


 

Prediction:


Michigan wins this game but doesn’t cover the 36.5. UNLV just won’t have enough talent or depth to stay in it. The Michigan offensive line has heard the criticism after their week one performance and is going to control the line of scrimmage and UNLV just won’t have any answer for it. The Wolverine’s passing game is going to continue right where it left off last week before they took their foot off the gas. Michigan will also start to get the run game going in this game, look for Edwards to have a big day.


Final score UNLV 10 Michigan 41





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