Top OOC Games of 2007: #4 Oregon at Michigan
#4 Oregon at Michigan
Both the Ducks and Wolverines have warm-up games their first game of the year before meeting on September 8th in the Big House. This game starts a tough three game stretch for Michigan as they play Oregon, Notre Dame, and Penn State all in consecutive weeks. Good thing for Wolverine fans is that all those games are in Michigan.
Oregon's quarterback Dennis Dixon is one of the most interesting players in the country. He has both the arm and the feet to cause a lot of problems for opposing defenses, but lacks the confidence needed to pull it off. Dixon had a good start to the 2006 season before falling off and eventually losing his job by the end of the season. After his spring performance, there is no doubt that he is the #1 guy for the Ducks. In the backfield is Jonathan Stewart, and if he can stay healthy, and consistent he could be poised for an All American season.
On defense they have starters returning at both corners and at linebacker, but where they lack is their special teams. As close as this game will be, Special Teams could become a key part of the game.
I talked about Michigan earlier in this series. They have a lot returning on the offense (Chad Henne, Michael Hart) but they also have a lot to prove after losing their last two games of 2006. Their Rose Bowl debacle against USC had many experts questioning not only Michigan's skill, but the whole skill level of the Big Ten. A win against Oregon would help heal a little of that wound.
Oregon did beat Michigan a few years ago in a thrilling victory, and if Dixon can mix it up in the air and on the ground the Ducks can definitely pull it off again. I expect this one to be a nail biter the entire time with the Wolverines holding the edge by a field goal due to home field advantage. This game is a definite don't miss game.