Every Saturday morning during college football season, since the day that it all began against Stanford back in early September, we here at Inside NU have tweeted some form of the following: "Get up. It's gameday." Sometimes it follows from the slogan of ESPN's College GameDay. Other times, it's literally urging you to get out of bed. Either way, the sentiment is the same: College football is here. It's time to prepare yourself.
Five times we've tweeted something to that effect. And more importantly, five times, Northwestern has won in 2015. That's five more times than they've lost. And that has propelled the Wildcats onto the national radar. No. 13 Northwestern is in Ann Arbor Saturday to take on the 18th-ranked Michigan Wolverines in what is undoubtedly one of the games of the week in college football. It will draw the eyes of the country.
And thus, this Saturday is different. When you woke up this morning, you probably sensed it. Something felt strange, perhaps enticing. You rolled out of bed, gathered yourself, and you didn't just think about Northwestern football. You thought about how so many other people did exactly the same thing. For the first Saturday in what seems like an eternity — in reality it's only been a little more than two years — Northwestern football is important. It is on the minds of Evanstonians. It is on the minds of Chicagoans. It is on the minds of Midwesterners. It is on the minds of Americans. And that's pretty cool.
As our Zach Pereles has been saying, there seems to be something special about this team. Saturday, we either validate that statement or invalidate it. Either the Wildcats make the entire nation see purple, or those wild dreams fade off into the distance.
We've been ready to find out since Monday or Tuesday. You've probably been ready too. Kickoff is on its way.
But first, to tide you over...
- Our Sam Brief told the inspirational story of Matt Frazier, Northwestern's senior offensive lineman who finally returned to the field against Minnesota. You won't believe what he had to endure this offseason.
- Our Josh Rosenblat profiled Northwestern starting QB Clayton Thorson, who, even as a freshman, is already the unflappable face of the program.
- Northwestern is getting two key players back for Saturday's game, senior left tackle Geoff Mogus and sophomore superback Garrett Dickerson.
- Picks, picks, picks. There's disagreement on our staff for the first time since Week 3.
- Northwestern and Michigan are basically the same team. A look at the similarities.
- A look at three key matchups that could decide Saturday's game.
- Drew Hallett of SB Nation Michigan site Maize N Brew stopped by for an in-depth preview of Northwestern-Michigan.
- Northwestern fans have some not-so-fond memories of recent games against Michigan.
- Here's the Wildcats' pre-injury report depth chart for Week 6.
- Pat Fitzgerald spoke about Michigan and Jim Harbaugh at his weekly press conference.
- Every Week Is Hate Week. Especially when Jim Harbaugh is the subject.
- And finally how could we not recall last year's M00N? We summed it up with nine vines.