That’s really all I can say at this point.
It was an absolute mess in Columbus. From the get go, Ohio State destroyed Michigan with the mesh concept against Michigans man defense. Michigan made it close with two touchdowns in six seconds before the half but gave up a field goal to end the half to trail 24-19.
Then the floodgates opened.
Michigan just didn’t look prepared in the second half. For as great as Don Brown has been with second half adjustments this season, he just had no match for Ohio State. Michigans first ranked defense gave up 38 points in the second half. Thirty. Eight. It didn’t help that Devin Bush and Rashan Gary were hurt but the whole unit played terribly. They couldn’t tackle, Brandon Watson got beat like a drum all game and Dwayne Haskins could’ve had himself multiple picnics in the pocket.
In a vacuum, this is a very bad loss. It eliminates any chance that Michigan had at getting into the College Football Playoff and you get absolutely embarrassed by your biggest rival with your best chance to make a run at a National Title in the Harbaugh era.
On a bigger level, this is an even worse loss for Jim Harbaugh and his Michigan tenure. Sure he beat Penn State, Michigan State and Wisconsin this season but all of those teams turned out to be in the midst of down years. Beating this Ohio State team, who had been sputtering as of late, would’ve been the key win to show the world that this Michigan team wasn’t like the rest.
Instead, it showed that Michigan is still the little brother to Ohio State.
There’s something to say about the way Shea Patterson played in the biggest game of the year for Harbaugh, who is an alleged QB whisperer. The play calling was not ideal. Trying to grind it out down the field when you’re down by three possessions is cowardly. You have to open it up and let Patterson make something happen. Running on second downs is also an infuriating tactic when the Buckeyes had been bottling the run up all day.
I don’t know where Michigan goes from here. They’re going to get a big bowl game but obviously nothing compared to what was at stake with a win. At Michigan, beating Ohio State is THE thing you need to do above all else. Harbaugh hasn’t been able to do that yet. You wonder if the time is ticking on the khakis era.