FOX Analysts: Michigan Football Wins the B1G and College Football Playoff If...

FOX Analysts: Michigan Football Wins the B1G and College Football Playoff If...

Football

FOX Analysts: Michigan Football Wins the B1G and College Football Playoff If...


FOX analysts Joel Klatt, Bruce Feldman, Robert Smith and Brady Quinn tell WolverinesWire how they could see Michigan football winning the Big Ten and go to the College Football Playoff in 2018.


FOX Analysts: Michigan Football Wins the B1G and College Football Playoff If…

This is why Michigan hired Jim Harbaugh.

To win the big games, and bring Michigan football back. But it’s year four, and he hasn’t even finished better than third in his own division.

Yada, yada, yada.

Of course, that doesn’t tell the whole story, as several of the FOX analysts (or even us here at WolverinesWire) have divulged (more from them later).

Now, Michigan enters 2018 with one of the nation’s most difficult schedules, but now talent and experience is on the Wolverines side. There’s a lot to like about this 2018 team, and if everything comes together, despite the maize and blue not getting a lot of national attention as a title contender, Michigan could feasibly make a run.

WolverinesWire talked to four FOX college football analysts, and here’s what they had to say about what Michigan has to do to make a run this year. And there was a wide sense of agreement: it all comes down to Shea Patterson and the loaded Michigan defense playing up to expectations.

Lead Color Analyst and former Colorado QB JOEL Klatt

“If Shea stays healthy and if the defense plays to their potential. (If) those two things happen, you have a really potent combination in Ann Arbor. Still might be difficult, but if you have a healthy quarterback (who) plays to his potential, they’re going to be tough to beat.”

Former NOtre Dame QB Brady Quinn

“Shea Patterson plays the way I think he’s capable of. I think if he can throw for 28-plus touchdowns, under 8 interceptions, this is going to be a really, really dangerous team. It will be a productive offense with that sort of balance, and those sorts of stats coming from your quarterback. I think they’re a team, that again, because of their defense, they can always rely on that, and the talent they have on offense. If he can play that way, this is a team that can compete for a national championship.”

Former Ohio State RB Robert Smith

“If Shea Patterson can provide the type of balance that the offense needs, because all the pieces are there on defense.”

Sideline reporter and The Athletic’s Bruce Feldman

“If Shea Patterson plays like a five-star guy. I mean, that’s a big if. 

“I think what’s interesting to me here is, Dwayne Haskins, another five-star guy, another guy with a terrific arm — I think there’s probably a little more benefit of the doubt for him. I don’t think (Ohio State’s) defense is better than the Michigan defense. What I do think is, the running backs, as good as the Michigan guys are, I think, maybe, Dobbins and Weber are a bit better. I think the receiving corps is more experienced.

“But, again, if Shea Patterson is as good as people thought he was coming out of high school — and he’s definitely talented — and Jim Harbaugh can take him to the next level, and Pep Hamilton can get him to push even past that, who knows? I don’t think there’s a big gap between what (Ohio State has) given how loaded that defense is. They should be able to play with anybody.”

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