The Wolverine

November 2016

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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Page 25 of 83

26 THE WOLVERINE NOVEMBER 2016 BY CHRIS BALAS W inning football games usually comes down to who has the advantage in two out of three aspects of the game, in terms of offense, defense and special teams, especially when it comes to evenly matched foes. Only two of Michigan's first six opponents this year might fall into that category — Colorado, which is a contender in the Pac-12, and No. 10 Wisconsin — but the case study on each proves just how true this is … or in Badgers' case, might have been. The Wolverines needed a heavy dose of solid special teams play to get by the Buffaloes Sept. 17, and they got it to start and finish the scoring. They'd been punched in the mouth and fallen behind 14-0 in the first quarter when fifth-year senior Michael Jocz provided one of the key plays of the non-conference season. "I was just trying to go up to guys and say: 'Look, all it takes is one play. We need a spark,'" senior tight end and captain Jake Butt said after the game. Jocz, one of Butt's backups at tight end, responded by blocking a punt, and sophomore receiver Grant Perry scooped it up, racing into the end zone from six yards away to cut the lead in half. U-M continued to battle back, tak- Mixed Reviews Special Teams Have Been Very Good At The Halfway Point, With One Exception

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