Offensive coordinator Josh Gattis was on staff at Penn State when it went from a 2-2 start to a Big Ten championship.

Flip a few of those names around and you have the same eulogies currently being written about the 2019 Wolverines. Attribute McSorley’s quote to Jim Harbaugh or Shea Patterson after Michigan’s 35-14 loss to Wisconsin two weeks ago and no one would bat an eye.
There’s a kicker, though.
Three months later, McSorley stood on a podium in Lucas Oil Stadium, draped in confetti, triumphantly raising the Big Ten championship trophy over his head.

Senior quarterback Shea Patterson's play could determine the outcome of Saturday's game.

In all likelihood, No. 19 Michigan’s true capability as a team is somewhere between the one that got run out of Camp Randall Stadium on Sept. 21 and the one that shut out Rutgers last Saturday at the Big House. But where on that spectrum it is will determine the direction of its season. Can the Wolverines achieve the goals they’ve spent the last two weeks saying are still attainable? Or is this a team ticketed for 7-5?

The Michigan football team has a chance to define its season against Iowa.

From there, it goes one of two ways. Last season, Michigan ripped off 10 straight wins, including three over good teams, riding the streak into Columbus as the bruise left by the initial loss faded. In 2017, it metastasized and Michigan went 8-4 in the regular season, the worst year of the Harbaugh era.
Those are the two directions this season can head towards Saturday.

Freshman safety Daxton Hill showed his potential and proved part of his hype with his performance against Rutgers.

While one game against Rutgers isn’t going to suddenly rocket freshman safety Daxton Hill up the depth chart, his hype train has regained steam, and for good reason.


Look past Harbaugh suggesting the Wolverines run the ball 60-plus times in a game, and you’ll see what he wants this running back group to be - balanced.

Sophomore running back Christian Turner scored his first career touchdown against Rutgers.

Last year, Karan Higdon told him to be patient. Christian Turner brought it up in the context of running the ball and waiting for a hole to open up. It was hard not to see a bigger picture coming into focus.
On Saturday, instead of going down when he got hit, Turner moved the pile and crossed the ball over the plane.

Senior guard Ben Bredeson called Saturday's game against Iowa a "measuring stick" for Michigan's offensive line.

As Michigan’s offense entered the season with sky-high expectations, every conversation was rooted in one assumption: The Wolverines would have a steady, reliable offensive line.

Freshman running back Zach Charbonnet has just seven carries the last two weeks.

The football theory of establishing the run has been long disproven.

After allowing 359 rushing yards to Wisconsin, Michigan's defensive line bounced back against Rutgers.

Any bounce back the Wolverines provided against Rutgers was always going to be shrouded in the caveat of the opponent. While Wisconsin features one of the nation’s best offensive lines, Rutgers was always going to be overmatched by Michigan’s athleticism. Still, dominating Rutgers beats the alternative.

Senior quarterback Shea Patterson and the Michigan offense seemed to play much more to their strengths against Rutgers.

Against Rutgers, Michigan came out firing. The Wolverines played mistake-free football to start, stuck to their guns and scored within five plays. Then they marched down the field again on the second drive, going up 14-0 before 10 minutes of game time had passed. Call it a result of Josh Gattis calling plays from the field or a result of simply playing a defense as porous as Rutgers’.