Having faced Alabama before, Mike Barrett notes the differences Michigan football will see

ESPN: Wolverines two defenders had injury suspension

INDIANAPOLIS — Michigan football will be relying on several key players who have been to the College Football Playoff before, but not necessarily players who know what it’s like to play Alabama. However, there are some who have that exact experience.

The Wolverines have a few players still on the team who were a part of the Vrbo Citrus Bowl following the 2019 season — like wide receiver Cornelius Johnson, cornerback Mike Sainristil, and linebacker Mike Barrett. The maize and blue did not emerge victorious from that game, but familiarity can breed success.

After the announcement on Sunday that Michigan will play Alabama in the Rose Bowl, Barrett had some memories of that game and the team that the Wolverines went up against. Noting how loaded with talent the Crimson Tide were that year, though there aren’t as many household names on this year’s edition, it’s still a loaded team that will require Michigan’s best, Barrett says.

“The Alabama team in 2019 had some weapons on it, that’s all I can remember,” Barrett said. “DeVonta Smith, Jerry Jeudy, Najee Harris — I just know that team was loaded. That’s kind of all I could really hit on from that.

“This year, I know they got a lot of talent — they always have a lot of talent. Well-coached, one of the best coaches in the country. So you know we got to go execute, execute our game plan, preparing just like we’ve been preparing all week and all year.”

Even without having studied Alabama at that point on Sunday, Barrett already had a pretty good idea of what his team would be up against.

His quick reaction as to what the Crimson Tide will present is quite accurate, but Barrett is confident in what the Wolverine defense will present against the Alabama offense.

“They’re a physical team, pretty versatile,” Barrett said. “They can air it out, can run the ball, they’ve got a (great) quarterback. They can do a lot of things that can beat you. It’ll be a great test for us. We’re dominant up front, got guys in the back end that can fly around. So I feel like it will be a good test for us.”

Michigan and Alabama will kick off on New Year’s Day in the Rose Bowl at 5 p.m. EST.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *