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Go Blue Game Day November 17, 2018 – Michigan vs Indiana Football 2018

Posted on November 16, 2018 by Barry Gallagher

Today is another chapter in the Michigan vs Indiana football tradition. The teams have not played a lot. However, when they do, Michigan usually comes out on top. Of course, when Indiana does win, it is very “upsetting” to Michigan fans – that’s for sure! It’s time to take a closer look at a very BIG game for both teams.

Note-Bo Schembechler, who died on this day in 2006, was 16-1-0 against the Hoosiers during his career. Yes, he won 94 percent of his games against the Crimson and White. Nobody won more games against Indiana, nooooooooooooooobody! Please take a moment to appreciate the winningest coach of the winningest team in college football history. May the legendary Glenn Edward “Bo” Schembechler continue to Rest in Peace. Thanks for the memories coach! (Photo courtesy of the Bentley Historical Library at The University of Michigan.)

Calendar History:

The Wolverines have played a total of nineteen games on November 17th in their 139-year football history. Michigan’s record on this day is 11 wins, 8 losses and 0 ties which works out to a winning percentage of just under fifty-eight percent (.579). Conference play is always tougher, but the Wolverines still own a winning rate of just over fifty-three percent (.538) in Big Ten games played on this day. Check out the numbers below:

Type Game # of Games Won Lost Tied Win %
Non-Conference 6 4 2 0 .667
Conference 13 7 6 0 .538
All Games 19 11 8 0 .579

The Wolverines have played ten home games on this date and eight road games. One game in 1888 was played on a neutral field (Detroit) and Michigan won that contest. Michigan’s home record is 7 wins and 3 losses. Michigan’s road record on the seventeenth day of November is not very good. They have won 3 games and lost 5 when playing away from Ann Arbor. The numbers on this page make the November 17th a good day for Michigan Football, especially when playing in Ann Arbor! Here is a little more history about Michigan Football on this date.

  • Michigan’s first game, and first win, on this date took place in 1888. The Wolverines traveled to Detroit to play the Detroit Athletic Club team (DAC). The DAC team had a lot of Michigan alumni players, but it didn’t matter. Michigan won the game by a score of 14-6. Interestingly, the second game they ever played on this date was another 14-6 victory over Oberlin.
  • Michigan’s first loss on this day happened in 1906 when the Wolverines went on the road and lost to Pennsylvania by a score of 0-17.
  • Michigan’s biggest wins on this date took place in 1973 and again in 2012. Bo Shembechler’s Wolverines beat Purdue in Lafayette by a score of 34-9. That twenty-five- point victory margin was also achieved by Brady Hoke’s team in 2012 since Michigan beat Iowa 42-17.
  • The biggest Michigan loss on this date took place at the hands of OSU in Ann Arbor. The Buckeyes clobbered Harry Kipke’s Wolverines by a score of 34-0 in 1934. Ugh!
  • Michigan’s win over Iowa in 2012 was the last game played on the seventeenth day of November.

Michigan and Indiana have only played once on the seventeenth day of November and that was in 1956. That game took place in Ann Arbor and the Wolverines beat up on the Hoosiers by a score of 49-26.

Notable Wolverine Performances on November 17th:

  • 1928 – Austin Hughes kicked a short field goal for the only points of the game. Michigan defeats Michigan State 3-0in Ann Arbor.
  • 1945 – Bob Nussbaumer caught two Joe Ponsetto passes for 104-yards. Michigan rolled over Purdue 27-13.
  • 1956 – Quarterback Bob Ptacek ran for 104-yards on 9 carries. Michigan bounces the Hoosiers 49-26. He also completed 3 of 6 passes for 47-yards and one touchdown.
  • 1990 – Ricky Powers scored a touchdown and  ran for 127-yards on 24 carries. Michigan routed Minnesota by a score of 35-18. Elvis Grbac completed 13 of 22 passes for 126-yards and 3 touchdowns.
  • 2001 – John Navarre completed 11 of 24 passes for 58-yards on a cold, windy day in Madison. One of his completions (1-yard) goes to a Canadian tight end named Deitan Dubuc. Marlin Jackson scored on a 43-yard punt return to spark a 20-17 win over Wisconsin.
  • 2012 – Devin Gardner led the Wolverines to an impressive 42-17 win over the visitors from Iowa City. He completed 18 of 23 passes for 314-yards and 3 touchdowns. He also rushed for 37-net yards and 3 more scores.

Michigan vs Indiana Football Series History:

Today’s game is the sixty-seventh game in the Michigan vs Indiana football series. This will be the second time that these Big Ten rivals have ever played on the seventeenth day of November.  Here are some notes about the history of these original Big Ten (Western Conference) teams.

  • First game between Michigan and Indiana was played in Ann Arbor in 1900. The Wolverines won by a score of 12-0.
  • First time the Hoosiers beat the Wolverines was on October 13, 1928 in Ann Arbor. Michigan fell by a score of 0-6.
  • The biggest series win belongs to Michigan. Fielding Yost’s footballers blasted the Hoosiers by a score of 63-0 in 1925!
  • Last loss to the Hoosiers was in 1987. Bill Mallory, a long-time friend of Bo Schembecher, ambushed Bo’s Wolverines in Bloomington by a score of 10-14. Ugh!
  • The last time Michigan and Indiana played in the Big House resulted in a 20-10 win for the Wolverines. It was a cold, snowy day, but the Wolverines played well enough to beat the elements and the Hoosiers.
  • The trend lines all favor Michigan in this series. The last time Indiana won in The Big House was in 1967. That is a very, very long time ago.

So far, a total of total of sixty-six games  have been played in the Michigan vs Indiana series. Check out the series numbers below:

Type Game # of Games Won Lost Tied Win %
UM Home 47 40 7 0 .851
UM Away 19 17 2 0 .894
Series Total 66 57 9 0 .863

Yes, history is definitely on Michigan’s side in this series. The Wolverines have simply been the better team for the largest part of this series. I also find it very interesting that there has never been a tie in this series. Of course, there won’t be one today!

Notable Performances – Michigan vs Indiana in Ann Arbor:

In addition to fifty-seven wins over the Hoosiers, Michigan players have had some record setting performances against Indiana. Here are some of the best Wolverine performances against the Hoosiers in Ann Arbor:

  • October 25, 1975 – Rob Lytle ran for 147-yards and scored 4 touchdowns in a 55-7 Homecoming win over the Hoosiers. Bo’s Wolverines steam rolled the Hoosier defense with 490-yards rushing – wow!
  • October 27, 1979 – Tenth-ranked Michigan was tied with Indiana (21-21) with less than ten seconds to play. No problem – John Wangler and Anthony Carter hooked up for the most exciting ending to a Wolverine Homecoming game – ever! Wolverines win 27-21 and Ufer goes crazy. Okay, Ufer went crazier than usual, which is really, very crazy!
  • October 1985 – Jim Harbaugh racked up 283 passing yards (17 for 23) and tossed a 34-yard scoring pass to Erick Kattus. Jamie Morris ran for 179-yards and 2 scores in a 42-15 win over the Crimson and White.
  • October 21, 1991 – Desmond Howard hauled in 3 scoring passes from Elvis Grbac in a 24-16 win. Kicker J. D. Carlson added a field goal for the Wolverines.
  • November 12, 2005 – Michigan wins 41-14. For the second straight season Chad Henne tosses 3 touchdown passes to three different receivers (Jason Avant, Steve Breaston and Tyler Ecker) against the Hoosiers. Kevin Grady led a strong rushing attack with 14 carries for 94-yards.
  • October 2, 2009 – Tate Forcier completed 11 of 21 passes for 184 yards and 2 scores. Carlos Brown ran for a touchdown and caught one of Forcier’s passes for a 61-yard trip to the end zone. Michigan won the “shootout” by a margin of 36-33.
  • November 14, 2013 – Devin Gardner had a record setting day against the Hoosiers. He completed 21 of 29 passes for 503-yards and 2 touchdowns. Jeremy Gallon, also set a Michigan receiving record with 14 catches for 369-yards and 2 touchdowns. Wolverines won 63-47. Yes, the defenses just stayed in the locker room that day.
  • November 19, 2016 – De Veon Smith led Michigan with 158-rushing yards and scored 2 touchdowns. Kenny Allen kicked two field goals in windy, snowy 20-10 win over the Hoosiers.

Thanks to Dr. Sap for posting this video!

Yes, some of the greatest plays and greatest days in Michigan Football history have occurred against the Indiana Hoosiers. Of course, my favorite is John Wangler to Anthony Carter on the last play of the game in 1979. Who will do something memorable today in Hoosier Land?


At this point in the 2018 season, fourth-ranked Michigan (9-1) and Indiana (5-5) are looking to improve their standing in Big Ten play. Of course, Michigan is guaranteed a bowl game, but they are fighting for a spot in the 2018 College Football Playoffs. On the other hand, Indiana needs to win one more game to become bowl eligible.

Michigan is playing as well as any team in the country, especially the defense. It will be a long, long day for Indiana. A Hoosier victory over Michigan would be the BIGGEST Indiana win EVER in Ann Arbor. Unfortunately, for the Hoosiers, that will not happen today!

As of this writing, Michigan is a four-touchdown favorite and that is probably about right based on their performance so far this season. Coach Allen will bring a fired-up Hoosier team to the Big House today. Unfortunately, Michigan has a bunch of really, really, really good players who are playing at a very high level. Indiana will play hard from start to finish., Michigan will just play better! I think it will be close for the first quarter since Michigan doesn’t seem to get rolling until the second fifteen minutes of play.

My Prediction Michigan vs Indiana 2018:

I think that the first sixty-six games of the season give us a glimpse of what to expect today. Michigan has scored 2, 017 points so far against Indiana which averages out to just over thirty-points (30.5) per game. The Hoosiers have only scored 774 points in 66 games which means they average about elven points per contest (11.7) against Michigan. However, I think the difference between these two teams will be greater than 19-points today.

Right now, the Wolverines seem to be stuck on a score of 42-7 since that was the final score against Penn State and Rutgers. The last time that Michigan won back-to-back games by the same score was in 1987. Bo Schembechler’s footballers won two straight games by a score of 49-0. Michigan’s record against Indiana is superb and it will stay that way with a, you guessed it, 42-7 victory today. Go Blue!

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