Last week's game against UMass was expected to be Michigan's first chance to get its backups serious playing time. What ended up happening, as we all know, was a close game that required Michigan's starters to stay in the game until the very end.
Although it's possible Bowling Green could present a similar challenge on Saturday, Rich Rodriguez said that the backups will play no matter what the score is. With the Big Ten slate beginning next week, it's vital for guys like Devin Gardner and Tate Forcier to get playing time, as well as the other inexperienced backups.
"And a bunch of other guys, more running backs, more receivers, more linemen," Rodriguez said about who will play. "We've got to get them in the game whether we're ahead or not. We've got to try to get more guys ready to play. Defensively, as well. The problem we have is so many young guys that are on the two-deep, we're a little bit nervous to put them in there in crucial situations. We're trying to get the right situation. But we're going to force ourselves.
Hopefully the score won't be an issue and Michigan will have the luxury of putting in its backups sometime early on in the second half. I know Rodriguez said that the backups will play regardless of the score, but you obviously can't sacrifice a win for getting backups playing time, so let's just hope that the score is lopsided enough for this to not be an issue.