It’s officially rivalry week in the state of Michigan as the Wolverines and Spartans have begun preparations for their annual matchup this weekend.
As far as Michigan is concerned, head coach Jim Harbaugh has his team on “high alert” for the Spartans, not taking into account their paltry 4-5 record and especially looking out for any special or trick plays the Spartans might run.
“On high alert for everything,” Harbaugh said. “Specifically, we understand that Coach (Mark) Dantonio is a master motivator. There could be trick plays on special teams. Punt fakes, field goal fakes. Everything needs to be alerted and prepared and ready for.”
“On alert. We’re on alert. Heightened intensity in our preparation, understanding that it’s got to be at its highest level.”
“High alert. Both teams, this is an important game for both teams. Throw out the records. There’s a cliché you can use when you play this type of game.”
Harbaugh on the possibility of trick plays coming from Michigan State:
“Meeting time and practice time. You look at everything a team has done in terms of fakes or misdirection. Deceptive type of plays. And what they’ve done, and OK, we’ve prepared for that, but also what is a possible complement to something that they’ve already done that they could be working on, they could be practicing? Alert for everything.”
“I would say it’s more than most games because they’ve done more of those types of plays, or fakes. Out of necessity. Spending more time on it than normal.”
The Wolverines and Spartans kick off from the Big House in Ann Arbor on Saturday at noon.