Michigan plays Minnesota tomorrow for the Little Brown Jug – whose significance is magnified only when Minnesota wins the game. The Wolverines lead the series 65-32. By the laws of football, Minnesota is only allowed that honor once a decade, 1967, 1977, 1986, 2005. Minnesota has already won the trophy this decade, this century, this millennium, so by all rights Michigan should retain the little jug for perpetuity.
7-2 plays 2-7, the norm in this game. However, the 7-2 are the Golden Gophers and the 2-7 are the Wolverines. An anomaly exists in the football universe.
Not only are the roles reversed, but Minnesota has both a good defense and passing attack, playing into Michigan’s weaknesses. Stephen Threet, Michigan’s QB, has been hitting his stride, but is suffering from a contagious malady on the Michigan team this year; a slight concussion.
Hope exists for Michigan. Minnesota’s successful coach, Glen Mason, was fired at the end of the 2006 season. Tim Brewster, Mason’s successor, led the Fool’s Golden Gophers to a spectacular 1-11 record last season, losing to such powers as Bowling Green, Florida Atlantic, and North Dakota State. Michigan has the chance tomorrow to triple that success.
Minnesota’s wins this year include Northern Illinois, Bowling, Montana State, and Florida Atlantic. A win is a win, especially since Michigan couldn’t even beat Toledo this year.
A friendly warning to Coach Brewster. Beat Michigan this year and lose your job, as happened with Toledo’s Tom Amstutz.
Michigan must win because it is the team's only chance of success this year.