September 22, 2008

Inside the numbers: Michigan

MADISON, Wis. - When the Badgers travel to Ann Arbor, Mich. to take on 1-2 Michigan, history will not be in their favor. In UW history, only six out of 32 teams have claimed victory in the "Big House." With the Big Ten season upon us, and the cardinal and white ranked in the top ten nationally, will this visit to Michigan Stadium be a success?

You can be the decision maker as we go inside the UW-Michigan numbers:

22: The Wolverines have won 22 straight conference openers at home. Their last setback occurred in 1967 when they lost to rival Michigan State 34-0.

38: The bad news…Michigan has won 38 of their last 40 conference opening tilts. The good news…the two losses have come against Wisconsin, including a road 21-14 loss in 1981, and another 23-20 road defeat in 2005.

9-0: The Wolverines have never lost a home conference opener against the Badgers.

18: For Michigan, the Badgers have been the most common Big Ten conference opening opponent in the programs history. Of those 18 meetings, the Wolverines have won 16 of them.

797: Difference of point totals throughout the 61-game history of UW-Michigan. football. That difference is bigger than the 636 points UW has tallied in those 61 games.

56-51-4: UW's record in Big Ten openers throughout the history of the program, including a 25-27-3 mark on the road.

14: Years it has been since UW last won at Michigan. In 1994, the Badgers defeated the Wolverines 31-19.

65.3: Michigan ranks second in the conference by allowing only 65.3 rushing yards per game. That number also ranks 12th nationally.

238.7: To combat Michigan's stellar rush defense, the Badgers have averaged nearly 240 yards rushing in their three contests in 2008, good for 13th in the nation. Of course, the number is somewhat inflated in part to their 400-plus yard performance against Akron. But against Marshall and Fresno State, the Badgers averaged only 156 yards on the ground.

34: Yards per game, P.J. Hill has averaged against the Wolverines. In 2006 he rushed for 54 yards on 20 carries. Then, last season, while limited due to an injury, he only accumulated 14 yards on 5 carries.

126.3: Number of rushing yards Hill averages per contest so far in 2008, good enough to rank third in the Big Ten.

3,160: Yards Hill has in his career, the 8th best numbers nationally among active players.

79.5: Receiving yards senior tight end Travis Beckum has averaged against Michigan in his career.

0: Number of points Michigan has scored in the third quarter of play in 2008.

38: Number of points Wisconsin has scored in the third quarter of play in 2008.

41: Years it has been since UW has played an unranked Michigan squad.

49: Years since UW has played the Wolverines when they were ranked and Michigan was not.

First: Not really a number, but the Badgers are the first school in conference history to open Big Ten football against Michigan, Ohio State and Penn State in consecutive weeks.

6th: UW's strength of schedule nationally as of Sept. 21.

105: Number of combined starts UW's captains DeAndre Levy, Mike Newkirk, Chris Pressley and Kraig Urbik have under their belts.

213: Yards Michigan's heralded running back Sam McGuffie has on the season, including 1 touchdown. He leads the Wolverines in that category.

87.7: Yards the Badger defense allows on the ground, good for 3rd in the Big Ten.

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