In his weekly press conferences, Michigan Wolverines head coach Jim Harbaugh has emphasized a common feeling among his 2022 squad: confident in their abilities, but humble in their successes.
In Saturday’s postgame press conference, running back Blake Corum and quarterback J.J McCarthy demonstrated both qualities — framing their dominant early season results not as a boast of their talent, but as the first steps of the road to a much bigger goal.
“Nah, you don’t know,” Corum said. “I don’t know how good we are. I feel like we look good, but we haven’t faced no adversity yet. So like, I really don’t know how good we’re gonna be. I feel it; I feel like we’re gonna be great, but I can’t tell you. But I’ll tell you this — by the look of things, sky’s the limit for this offense.”
Given this is a team that had just won by a staggering 59-0 score, making it three consecutive games of scoring more than 50 points, the notion of an incomplete picture seems almost unfathomable. But to the Wolverines, even the most dominant of victories have room for improvement.
For McCarthy, one sequence in particular stuck in his mind.
“I feel like the efficiency was definitely there, but we had that one drive — I think it was the second drive of the game — where we went three and out, and that one was on me,” McCarthy said. “That one kinda haunts me, but I thought we played pretty well in the first half.”
While the dominance against external competition speaks for itself, the Wolverines internally compare themselves to a different level entirely.
“We’re always competing with ourselves,” McCarthy said. “No matter who we’re playing or when we’re playing, we’re always just gonna go out there and try to be the best version of ourselves every single week.”
Before another question could be asked, Corum added to McCarthy’s statements.
“You know you can only play your schedule,” Corum said. “We treat every game like it’s the championship game, so we’re just playing the schedule. We’re having fun, we’re out there balling and it’s been great, but Big Ten’s on the way. I’m excited, man.”
As the out-of-conference schedule ends, Michigan has built itself a baseline to grow from. With the competition level starting to ramp up, that expectation will undoubtedly be put to the test.