Football

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This year, in particular, few in and around Schembechler Hall are under any illusions about the challenge of going to Indiana and the cliche of the Hoosiers providing Michigan with a trap game.

Sophomore receiver Ronnie Bell had 150 yards on nine receptions in Michigan's 44-10 win over Michigan State..

As the Michigan football team returned to the sideline with the end zone covered in towels, a stadium rocking and the game in hand, Ronnie Bell had his helmet off. He was talking to Josh Gattis. It was the start of the fourth quarter and the Wolverines were leading by 24.

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Michigan rushed the field, lifting the Paul Bunyan trophy in the end zone and gesturing to the crowd.

Mark Dantonio walked off slowly, following his team into the tunnel.

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Lavert Hill bounced down the Michigan sideline, waiving his arms in jubilation with his helmet in hand. Behind him, the rest of the Wolverines did the same, spilling onto the field, toward the stands and everywhere in between.

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I know that’s not 100 percent accurate. For the Wolverines, a loss would end any faint hopes at a New Years’ Six Bowl. For Michigan State, it could be the difference between the Quick Lane Bowl and the Pinstripe Bowl — both worthy successors to its prestigious 2018 RedBox Bowl appearance.

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It’s for good reason — Michigan State coach Mark Dantonio is notorious for his trick plays. He’s run them for years, with well-known plays dating back to the beginning of his tenure in East Lansing. The Wolverines are well aware how much hate goes into this rivalry, and they know that Dantonio’s trickery is another thing to look out for.

Over the course of the season, Shea Patterson has improved his ball security, with six games since his last lost fumble.

With increased ball security, Michigan quarterback Shea Patterson has been able to use all the weapons in his arsenal for the offense.

Four years after the notorious error that led Michigan to lose to Michigan State, Scott Sypniewski is still grappling with that day.

Four years after the punt that changed the course of history for the Michigan football team, the hurt still lingers.

With cold weather projected for Saturday's game against Michigan State, the Michigan football team is preparing for its coldest kickoff since 2013.

In bad weather, Michigan has to worry because special teams plays and the passing game are affected more by the weather than other aspects of the game.

Junior corner Ambry Thomas played with Michigan State linebacker Tyriq Thompson at Martin Luther King High School.

When you consider the connections that lie in every corner of this rivalry, it’s no surprise that Michigan-Michigan State is known as one of the ugliest matchups in college football. For players throughout the state who grew up devout in this rivalry, whose lives are ingrained in this rivalry, this is their holy grail.