Michigan has had the exact start to the season they were hoping for. To be fair, it has been an easy road. 3 of their 5 games have come against teams with a winning record, those games were against Rutgers, Western Michigan, and Northern Illinois. Still, being 5-0 is an accomplishment well earned by this team.
Their easy start to the season continues on Saturday as they take on Nebraska. What's curious though is that despite their public perception as the clear favorites, oddsmakers don't think it's that simple.
Michigan is the oddsmakers' favorite to win this game, but it's only by a slim margin. Michigan is a 3 point favorite, and they're given -160 odds to win the game outright. That's an implied 61.5% chance to win the game. Meanwhile, Nebraska is given +150 odds, or an implied 40% chance to pull off the upset.
Not the odds that many were thinking of heading into this week's game, but Nebraska has earned it. After all, they did pay Oklahoma and Michigan State to one score games.
Michigan and Nebraska have played each other 10 times in their history. Michigan has won 5 of those game, and tied another.
The two teams have met just 5 times since 2000, with Nebraska winning 3 of those games. So neither side has a dominant hold on the series recently.
Michigan did win the most recent meeting between the two teams in 2018 56-10 though.
Michigan has their eyes set on the College Football Playoffs. They're within reach if they just win the Big 10, which seems like a real possibility for the first time in a long time.
To get to that goal, they can't afford to be tripped up by the likes of Nebraska. Even if the game is as close as oddsmakers believe it'll be, Michigan needs to find a way to pull out a win just like Oklahoma and Michigan State did.