Before I get into the game, one quick recruiting note. According to the Sun-Sentinel, WR Jehu Chesson is scheduled to visit for the Purdue game, which would make things very interesting because most Michigan fans are already assuming Amara Darboh will be the 2nd receiver, assuming Payton picks UM. However! Since I tweeted the Chesson visit yesterday, I've had a couple people telling me this visit probably won't happen, and looking back on the Sun-Sentinel article, there are no quotes, so don't be surprised if he doesn't show. Onto the game:
I know Purdue had a nice win against Illinois last weekend, but I really don't see them as a major threat here. Firstly, the game is at the Big House and secondly Michigan's players should be eager to prove themselves after a pretty poor showing in East Lansing.
Michigan needs to get the running game going early, and I think they'll be able to that against a Purdue front seven that doesn't really have any standout players. In the passing game, Denard will have to watch out for Purdue's CBs, who are pretty good; especially Ricardo Allen. But coming off a bye week, Michigan has had plenty of time to work on their timings etc, so I expect Denard to come out throwing well.
On offense, the Boilermakers like to run the ball, but they aren't really that good at it; nobody on the team has rushed for over 400 yards. I think Michigan's defense should handle them quite comfortably and hold them under 20 points.
Michigan will get off to a good start and eventually pull away in the 2nd half behind a strong defensive performance from Greg Mattison's crew.
Prediction: Michigan 38 ; Purdue 16