The Michigan Wolverines football team has put the Big Ten on notice

It is not the fact the Michigan Wolverines football team has started the season 3-0. They have done that often over the past few seasons. In fact Michigan has looked good enough to beat anyone the past few seasons and then cracks in the foundation appear and the football team falls back to earth. The start of this season feels different, it feels different because it is.

ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN – SEPTEMBER 28: Christian Turner #3 of the Michigan Wolverines celebrates his third quarter touchdown with offensive coordinator Josh Gattis while playing the Rutgers Scarlet Knights at Michigan Stadium on September 28, 2019 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh brought in new coaches to help breathe life into the football program. The moves are paying off. Michigan’s defense looks like well Michigan again. The offense looks unstoppable.

The Michigan Wolverines running game is moving the ball at will. A big credit goes to the offensive line who are blowing would be defenders off the ball and opening running lanes. Critics have said Michigan needs to pass the ball more. In yesterday’s blowout win against Northern Illinois the Wolverines aired it out for 233 yards.

Offensive coordinator Josh Gattis, now in his third season of play calling has found his groove. When Gattis arrived in Ann Arbor from the Alabama Crimson Tide football program, he insisted Michigan’s offense would resemble Alabama’s in terms of getting speed in space.

It has taken the Wolverines two seasons to get here, but now players and coaches are on the same page. Michigan is getting players in space and allowing athleticism and speed to do damage. Making the Wolverines look like one of the Big Ten Conference’s better teams.

ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN – SEPTEMBER 18: Blake Corum #2 of the Michigan Wolverines looks to get around the tackle of Eric Rogers #12 of the Northern Illinois Huskies during the first half
at Michigan Stadium on September 18, 2021 in Ann Arbor, Michigan. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

Sure the schedule as some tough games upcoming. If this was last season or the one before it would be sketchy at best to think Michigan could beat a Penn State or Ohio State. Now it seems like the Wolverines can win those games.

From week one to yesterdays win, Michigan is opening the offensive playbook more. They have established a dominate running game. Now they are getting the passing game cranked up. Meanwhile the Wolverines defense is stout and looks to be ready for stiffer competition.

Is the 2020 Michigan Wolverines football team ready to take the next step

How would quarterback Joe Milton handle making his first career start? How would a refurbished offensive line handle a prime time game with four new starters? Could the Michigan Wolverines wide receivers be effective without former Michigan standout Nico Collins part of the wide out group? How good would a loaded running backs group preform? A lot of questions were answered last night.

Heading into the 2020 season Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan Wolverines football team had a lot of questions to sort through. Many of which were on the offensive side of the ball.

Saturday night in a prime time matchup with the Minnesota Golden Gophers, Harbaugh’s team got to work and actually look like they might finally be ready to take the next step. The 49-24 win against a very good team turned heads.

Making his first start for Michigan at quarterback, Joe Milton managed a good game for the Wolverines. Milton was 15 of 22 for 225 yards and a touchdown, he would also run for a touchdown as well.

Facing a Minnesota team that has a nationally ranked top 10 defense, the new faces on the Wolverines offensive line played very well. Giving Milton a clean pocket to work with.

As for the Michigan defensive unit, they played well for the most part. The unit did give up a few big plays. That should have been expected given the Golden Gophers are a top 25 team and it was the first game of the season for both school’s.

That said the Wolverines will have to clean up a few aspects of the defensive play. The secondary must do a better job at keeping the play in front of them and not playing from the side or behind.

CHAMPAIGN, IL – OCTOBER 12: Head coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines is seen during the first half against the Illinois Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium on October 12, 2019 in Champaign, Illinois. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)

Yes, it is only one game. However, it looked and felt different than in seasons past. Jim Harbaugh’s Michigan football team has a different feel to it on the both the offensive and defensive side of the ball.

It looks as if Michigan is finally ready to take the next step.