When you've only played a team 15 times in over 100 years of football it's hard to get too wrapped up in a "rivalry". I mean the Penn State Michigan match up really hasn't been all that exciting over the years, nor has it really engendered any kind of real "hate." I think for both teams, but certainly for Michigan, it's just another game on the schedule.
But, since we're playing Penn State this weekend and we're running out of things to discuss other than OMG Denard! and LOLPSUQB!, what the hell. So here goes... WE HATE YOU PENN STATE! WOOO! Joe Pa is OLD! Yeah... wait... naaaahhhh. Just doesn't seem right. I really can't get into it. It's hard to really hate a team that you own a 10-5 record against and had a nine game winning streak over.
Well, maybe that's not true. But what is true is that both teams need a win this weekend and neither team is doing as well as they'd like. If you want to call it a "must win" for each team, so be it. In the interest of throwing a little more napalm on the fire we thought we'd hop in the way back machine and count down Michigan's top five wins over Penn State, you know, for giggles. Is there a better place to start than at #5 with Michigan's 2001 shut out of Penn State in Happy Valley? No. I think not.
Ahhhh.... memories. John Navarre. Ron Bellamy. Marquis Walker. What a glorious sight. And what are those things occurring in the Penn State backfield? Sacks! Remember those. Sigh....
2001 was not the best year in Michigan football history. As you can tell from the names above, Michigan really wasn't stacked with NFL talent on the offense and the results ended up showing that. Michigan dropped four games in 2001 including losses to Notre Dame, Michigan State and Ohio State plus a shellacking at the hands of Tennessee in the Outback Bowl.
But, at least for a game in 2001, everything clicked. And it clicked at the expense of Penn State. Enjoy.