No. 2 Colorado State (6-0) at No. 1 Michigan (9-0) – 7 p.m., Friday
COYNE: If this game was in Colorado on a Friday night, I might take a flyer on the Rams if I was feeling spicy. But in Ann Arbor? That’s a tough sell. This game makes its way onto the board because of the pageantry of a No. 1 vs. No. 2 conflict, but the game itself will have as much drama as the sun rising in the east.
For reasons outlined above, Schooler will kiss the ring — and maybe tell us how he almost went to Michigan — and pick the Wolverines, as well. The only formality is the score. While they won’t win, CSU has a dominant faceoff man and three solid lines to throw at the Michigan midfield, allowing them to exploit a couple of the Wolverines few weaknesses. I’ve got UM, 11-7.
SCHOOLER: What Michigan did to UCSB last weekend was a tragedy of epic proportions. What they do to Colorado State this weekend will be quite different. I think that CSU is the perfect match-up for Michigan. For a while, I thought ASU would be able to out-shoot the Rams and win, but I have changed my mind since hearing the report from the game in Fort Collins last weekend.
In order to have a chance against the Wolverines, you need to slow down the pace and control possession time. Alex Smith and the Rams do exactly that. They have a great FOGO and a patient offense. Their defense is their weak point, but that doesn’t matter if you control the ball. I think this will be a very low scoring game, probably in the range of 4-3. Since this is in Michigan, I am picking the Wolverines.
No. 3 Arizona State (7-1) at No. 8 Michigan State (5-2) – 4 p.m., Sunday
COYNE: I’ve been riding Sparty hard this year, but the loss to Boston College on Sunday was a true disappointment. Michigan State should have put that game away and didn’t. Now I’m supposed to believe they can do it against ASU? Can’t do it.
I’m more likely to take a team coming immediately off a game against Michigan, but after the Sun Devils hammered Colorado in the Sunday game last weekend, I’m not sure that applies here. Plus, State will play Colorado State on Saturday. Sparty’s best chance would probably be if ASU beats the Wolverines the evening before.
Ha, ha. Jac made a funny. Devils, 14-10.
SCHOOLER: No question in this game. UCSB lost to the Spartans by a goal and Boston College won by a goal. Neither of these teams are at the same level as the Sun Devils. Ryan Westfall and Eric Nelson are the leaders with a few young guys in Mike Montella and Jeff Peznick ready to turn heads when the seniors graduate. I do not see the Nemes connection making a difference. Dylan Wesfall along with his defense, will shut them down. The Sun Devils will get out to a big, early lead, so as the sun goes down, they will have no issues with the cold.