Both the Michigan defense and the Washington quarterback who finished second in the Heisman Trophy race are new challenges for Michael Penix Jr.
This Jan. 8 College Football Playoff title game clash at Houston's NRG Stadium will be the most exciting of the bunch. That much was guaranteed following Monday's CFP playoff performances by Penix and Michigan's best-in-nation defense.
In a thrilling 37-31 Sugar Bowl victory over Texas, Penix completed 37 of his 42 passes for 432 yards and two scores. The Wolverines' 27-20 Rose Bowl victory came after an afternoon of relentless pressure on Alabama quarterback Jalen Milroe, which culminated in a fourth-and-goal stop at the Wolverines' 3.
The matchup between Michigan and Washington will be the third between two 14-0 teams in history. If you believe FanDuel Sportsbook, the Wolverines will win by a score of 4 1/2 points.
Washington will provide the Pac-12 an opportunity to end on a high note before it collapses. Next season, three of the four remaining major conferences will have ten Pac-12 schools. In joining Michigan, the Huskies will be part of the Big Ten.
After missing significant time with knee issues while playing for Indiana, Penix transferred to Washington State for the 2017–18 season and became the first quarterback to throw for 4,500 yards in consecutive seasons since Patrick Mahomes of Texas Tech in 2015–16.
The team's objective, as Penix stated before the season began, is to secure the national championship. A chance to accomplish it has now presented itself to us. Raise your hands, Husky Nation. To the natty we shall go. Now, let's go!
In 2004, Southern California was the most recent Pac-12 champion. Splitting the 1991 title with Miami was the Huskies' sole championship. Before that squad, the Huskies had never beaten a team. Don James, a member of the College Football Hall of Fame, coached the team, quarterback Mark Brunell was a star, and defensive star Steve Emptman was a key cog.