Michigan vs. Georgia CFP Matchup | When An Unstoppable Force Meets An Immovable Object Something Has To Give

Michigan meets Georgia in the College Football Playoffs’ battle of the blue bloods. The winner advances to the National Championship game. (Photo: Getty Images)

College sports is beginning to mirror the irresistible force paradox.

When the Michigan Wolverines and Georgia Bulldogs face off in the Orange Bowl on Friday night in Miami, Florida, both teams will feel like they are looking in the mirror.

Both power schools were constructed in the same way. With strong running games and stout defenses, especially in the front seven. As with most games, the team who wins in the trenches will win this game. This one will be about “grit and grind” and who’s built to play crash dummy football better for four quarters.

Harbaugh’s Defining Win Propels Wolverines To CFP

The Michigan Wolverines have been mired in mediocrity since Harbaugh’s arrival in 2015. The Wolverines lost their first five matchups against archrival Ohio State during Harbaugh’s tenure, causing an unsettling and angst amongst “Big Blue” brass and alumni.

The 2020 matchup was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. All that misfortune changed for Michigan on the last Saturday in November as they finally beat the Buckeyes for the first time in nine seasons (42-27).

That win, followed by a 42-3 win over Iowa in the Big Ten Championship Game, punched their ticket to the CFP and eliminated the Buckeyes.

Michigan Wins By Running The Football And Stopping The Run

They’re led by Heisman runner-up defensive end Aidan Hutchinson on the defensive side of the football. He and bookend David Ojabo have wreaked havoc on opposing offenses all season.

The Wolverines use a two-back system with the power of Hassan Haskins and speed and quickness of Blake Corum. As a team they averaged (37 points per game) and hit the 30-point plateau ten times this season.

They aren’t cute in their approach and that won’t change against the Bulldogs.

The Georgia Bulldogs were the most dominant team in CFB all season until they ran into Alabama in the SEC Championship. That day they were exposed in a few areas, mainly their pass defense and lack of a big-time QB capable of making explosive plays when needed. That defeat doesn’t erase how dominant they were up to that point.

If all ends well, Georgia Pride can chalk it up to one bad game. The Bulldogs will have an opportunity to right their mistakes on Friday in a No. 2 versus No. 3 matchup against the hungry Wolverines.

Bulldogs Are Dominant On Both Lines: Defense Is The Key

 

The Bulldogs are led by a stingy defense which is littered with players who’ll be playing on Sundays. Linebacker Nakobe Dean and nose guard Jordan Davis are the linchpins, but Georgia head coach Kirby Smart has elite talent oozing from this defense. The Bulldogs had allowed just 83 points for the season prior to Alabama’s 41-point blitz.

The Bulldogs rank seventh in scoring offense (39.4 points per game) so they can fill it up.  They topped 30 points eleven times this season. Their only two times failing to reach 30 was the season opening 10-3 win over Clemson and the loss to Alabama.
QB Stetson Bennett needs the run game of Zamir White and James Cook to open his – game. So much like Michigan, it’s imperative that the Bulldogs be able to run the ball effectively.

Prediction:

Georgia – 21

Michigan – 17