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Michigan football star: Ohio State was all flash, no game in 2022

The Wolverines were unphased by Ohio State’s attempt at intimidation before ‘The Game’ in 2022.

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Michigan football star Will Johnson, Ohio State Buckeyes
© Junfu Han / USA TODAY NETWORK

A season ago, all Wolverine fans rejoiced as their team walked away from Columbus with a win for the first time in over two decades. In 2022, Michigan football and Ohio State headed into ‘The Game’ with 11-0 records and ranked in the top-3; the Buckeyes were favored to win by quite a bit, though all said and done, it was Jim Harbaugh’s Wolverines that emerged victorious. Recently, Michigan football star Will Johnson recalled how Ohio State tried to intimidate the Wolverines before the game, but could not back it up on the football field.

Michigan football star Will Johnson comments on Ohio State’s attempt at intimidation during ‘The Game’ in 2022

Just as we saw in 2021, the Michigan football team laid a monumental beat down on the Ohio State Buckeyes en route to a Big Ten title and College Football Playoff berth. In fact, the Wolverines won by more points in 2022 (45-23) than in 2021 (42-27). According to Michigan football star Will Johnson — a true freshman cornerback at the time — the Buckeyes attempted to get in the Wolverines’ heads before the game. Clearly, it did not work.

“I think just the atmosphere and before the game — they walked out with the fancy clothes, staring at us and doing all that kind of stuff,” Johnson told The Michigan Insider’s Sam Webb. “They did all the extra things before the game. But at the end of the day, after the game, we were the ones celebrating on their field. The atmosphere there, it was all red. Not a lot of Michigan people.”

The Buckeyes are all talk, no game

During Ryan Day’s tenure, we have seen this repeatedly: the Ohio State Buckeyes are all talk and no game. Throughout the 2022 offseason — despite being bested by the Wolverines in 2021 — Michigan football fans were subjected to all kinds of taunting from Buckeye fans. In fact, most analysts chalked the Wolverines’ impressive 15-point win as being a “fluke” in 2021 and claimed that with Ohio State’s talented roster, Michigan football would not take a second-straight win.

The storylines are a bit different this offseason, seeing as the Jim Harbaugh-led Michigan football team is now 2-0 against Ohio State this decade with two-straight Big Ten titles and more. For the Wolverines, no talk is needed; Michigan does what it needs to do and moves on to the next task.

This fall, look for Harbaugh’s team to be more focused than ever as the Wolverines attempt to get over the final hump and win a national title for the first time since 1997.



Thank you for reading Blue by Ninety. For more Michigan Athletics content from Blue by Ninety, follow us on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram. You can also subscribe to our YouTube Channel. For feedback, questions, concerns, or to apply for a writing position, please email our Managing Editor at Cj@BluebyNinety.com. Also, be sure to check out our shop and our podcast, which is available on Apple PodcastsSpotify, and all other streaming platforms. It is because of your support that we have become one of the fastest-growing and most influential Michigan media outlets there is!

FOOTBALL

Michigan football earns crystal ball for team’s No. 1 transfer portal target

Today, the good news kept rolling in regards to the No. 1 Michigan football transfer portal target.

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Michigan football, transfer portal, Josh Wallace, crystal ball
© Peter Ackerman, Asbury Park Press via Imagn Content Services, LLC

Blue by Ninety has been closely monitoring the recruitment of Josh Wallace, the Michigan Wolverines’ top target in the transfer portal. Earlier today, we reported that Wallace had a fantastic two-day visit to Ann Arbor and that there was a strong possibility of him joining the Maize and Blue. Shortly after, Wallace announced his commitment date for tomorrow, adding to the excitement. To cap off the day, Michigan football has received a new insider prediction from ON3 regarding Wallace’s decision. Additonally, Sab Webb of The Michigan Insider placed a crystal ball of his own.

Michigan football earns crystal ball and ON3 pick for major transfer portal target

We have emphasized before and will reiterate it once more — Josh Wallace would be a significant addition for Michigan football as they gear up for the 2023 season. While boasting some of the nation’s finest cornerbacks, the Wolverines lack depth in that position. Furthermore, with Will Johnson, their top cornerback, recovering from injury and surgery, acquiring a seasoned veteran like Wallace would render the Michigan football defense virtually unstoppable this coming fall.

Having made a significant impact during his time at UMass, Josh Wallace has garnered widespread attention since entering the transfer portal. Penn State initially seemed to be leading the race, but their chances swiftly diminished, leaving Michigan, Oklahoma, and Virginia Tech in a three-team competition. However, with recent insider predictions favoring Michigan, it seems that the Wolverines are closing in on securing Wallace’s commitment following his visit to Ann Arbor. As a result, the Maize and Blue now boast a 97.2% chance of landing Wallace tomorrow (per the RPM).

Josh Wallace is a must-get for the Maize and Blue

During his tenure at UMass, Wallace stood out as an All-Independent selection and served as a team captain. His invaluable experience and relentless drive to win would greatly benefit the young roster of the Wolverines. Additionally, considering that Michigan football has addressed most of its team needs, it is highly likely that Wallace will be their final target in the transfer portal unless some unforeseen opportunities arise before the start of the season.



Thank you for reading Blue by Ninety. For more Michigan Athletics content from Blue by Ninety, follow us on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram. You can also subscribe to our YouTube Channel. For feedback, questions, concerns, or to apply for a writing position, please email our Managing Editor at Cj@BluebyNinety.com. Also, be sure to check out our shop and our podcast, which is available on Apple PodcastsSpotify, and all other streaming platforms. It is because of your support that we have become one of the fastest-growing and most influential Michigan media outlets there is!

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Michigan football edge rusher looking to make big splash following freshman season

This fall, a sophomore Michigan football edge rusher is looking to make a difference in the Maize and Blue.

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Michigan football edge rusher, Derrick Moore
Dec 3, 2022; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Michigan Wolverines linebacker Derrick Moore (8) and Michigan Wolverines defensive back R.J. Moten (6) bring down Purdue Boilermakers quarterback Aidan O'Connell (16) during the first half of the Big Ten Championship at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Last year, Derrick Moore, a freshman edge rusher for Michigan football, received a significant amount of playing time but did not have a major role. This fall, as the Maize and Blue seek more options at defensive end and bolster their pass-rushing unit, Moore is expected to assume a much larger role, providing him with the opportunity to shine.

Michigan football edge rusher looking to take on bigger role in 2023

In his sophomore year, Derrick Moore played in all 14 games of the Wolverines’ impressive 2022 season. Michigan achieved a program-best record of 13 wins, secured a Big Ten title, and more. Currently, the team is lacking proven depth at defensive end, a position they need to improve upon for greater success compared to previous years. Nevertheless, the Wolverines are displaying strength as a team overall, and Moore is determined to follow in the footsteps of the great pass rushers who have come before him.

“A lot of people come up to me, tell me a lot, the possibility that I’m gonna be playing a lot, or even starting,” Moore said per USA Today. “But not really thinking about it. I’m just trying to put my head down. Because at the end of the day, we got plenty of guys in that room that gonna all play a lot. At the end of the day, I’m just trying to work and not really think about it, just let whatever comes to me.”

Self-driven, passionate, dedicated

Derrick Moore is poised to potentially secure a starting role for Michigan football this upcoming fall, a feat that is uncommon for most true sophomores. The Wolverines have high hopes for Moore’s significant progression from his first year to his second, and Moore himself affirms that no one can push him harder than he pushes himself.

“Who I feel helps make me better? I would say myself, when I put myself in that right mental state and lock in, I feel I can do whatever I want to do,” Derrick Moore said. “I would say nobody helps me besides the strength coaches. They help me get to where I want to be, the coaches, they helped me with things I lack in, things I need help on.

“My teammates, whenever I want to work on anything, get feedback from anybody, they will also be there to help. If it’s something I need to work on personally, for myself, I just lock in myself, mentally.”

Keep an eye on this rising standout Michigan football edge rusher, because the feeling in Ann Arbor is that he is bound to achieve great things during his time in the Maize and Blue.



Thank you for reading Blue by Ninety. For more Michigan Athletics content from Blue by Ninety, follow us on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram. You can also subscribe to our YouTube Channel. For feedback, questions, concerns, or to apply for a writing position, please email our Managing Editor at Cj@BluebyNinety.com. Also, be sure to check out our shop and our podcast, which is available on Apple PodcastsSpotify, and all other streaming platforms. It is because of your support that we have become one of the fastest-growing and most influential Michigan media outlets there is!

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New Michigan football transfer already standing out, according to his teammates

New Michigan Wolverine transfer AJ Barner has high expectations for the Wolverines this season.

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New Michigan football transfer, transfer portal, AJ Barner
Indiana's AJ Barner (88) celebrates a touchdown during the first half of the Indiana versus Penn State football game at Memorial Stadium on Satruday, Nov. 5, 2022. Mandatory Credit: Rich Janzaruk/Herald-Times / USA TODAY NETWORK

This offseason, the transfer portal has fed lots of high-level talent to the Wolverines. A new Michigan football transfer is ready to fill in a big hole on offense and could not be more stoked to be a Wolverine. Tight end AJ Barner transferred from Indiana to Michigan to win a Big Ten championship and has strong words of confidence in the Wolverines this season.

Michigan football transfer portal addition AJ Barner already standing out

Barner did not hold back on his expectations for Michigan football. “I know how much football means to this place,” said Barner on the In The Trenches podcast, adding, “Just that opportunity and the opportunity to compete for a national title, Big Ten championship… that’s the standard. It’s not just like a goal that may be out of reach. That’s the standard, and that’s what we’re shooting for.”

Last year, Michigan ran the ball on 62.9 percent of offensive plays. For Barner, that represented a perfect fit for his playstyle. Barner said, “It kind of goes into why I came here, just because I’m a guy that likes playing a tough brand of football. He added, “You turn on the TV, you see Michigan running the ball. Play action, physical up front… I’m the type of player that loves to do that.”

Barner understands the style of play that Jim Harbaugh has adapted over the past two years and is ready to play gritty football this season. He stated, “I feel like I’m a physical blocker, somebody that takes pride in just understanding if you’re going to get the ball, you’d better block first.” He added, “Of course I love catching the ball and scoring touchdowns, but I also love pancaking somebody, stuff like that.”

Long-time teammate, fellow transfer portal pick-up, has high praise for AJ Barner

Joining Barner on the Wolverines this year is his former quarterback Jack Tuttle. While it may seem like they transferred as a package deal, Tuttle said on the In the Trenches podcast that it was “kind of a coincidence” that they both ended up at Michigan.

The quarterback had nothing but high praise for his long-time teammate. “He’s an absolute beast baller,” he said. “A hard-nosed kid, just a great leader, too — a captain at Indiana with me. That kid will sell out.”

Tuttle continued by emphasizing Barner’s dedication to the game. “That’s one of the most important qualities to have as a football player. That kid would sell his left arm to win a football game. That heart… everything you could ask for. I honestly wouldn’t want anyone else stepping on a football field with me.”

Barner will likely be starting at tight end this year, sharing playing time with rising star Colston Loveland. Tuttle will be fighting for the backup position to J.J. McCarthy.



Thank you for reading Blue by Ninety. For more Michigan Athletics content from Blue by Ninety, follow us on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram. You can also subscribe to our YouTube Channel. For feedback, questions, concerns, or to apply for a writing position, please email our Managing Editor at Cj@BluebyNinety.com. Also, be sure to check out our shop and our podcast, which is available on Apple PodcastsSpotify, and all other streaming platforms. It is because of your support that we have become one of the fastest-growing and most influential Michigan media outlets there is!

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