close
close
Why Texas’ trip to Michigan is more than just another game
Why Texas’ trip to Michigan is more than just another game

The University of Texas’s away game at the University of Michigan on September 7 is objectively one of the most important non-league games of the college football season.

Jesse Simonton agrees.

On3.com’s national college football columnist released his rankings of the 10 most important non-conference games of the 2024 season on Monday morning, with Texas-Michigan at No. 1. Below is what Simonton had to say about the matchup.

“The Wolverines will put the nation’s longest active winning streak to the test against a Texas team looking to make a second straight road showing. Last year’s win over Alabama helped Steve Sarkisian’s team win a Big 12 title and a College Football Playoff berth, and a win in the Big House – even against a depleted Michigan team – could also give the Longhorns a special season in their first year in the SEC. Sherrone Moore takes over the reigning national champions, and the Wolverines’ former OC is no newbie to coaching in big matchups – she beat Penn State and Ohio State last season as the team’s interim coach. A win against a top-5 Texas team would more than justify Moore’s promotion, though.”

Simonton points to last season’s Texas-Alabama game, a 34-24 Longhorns win over Tuscaloosa on Sept. 9, 2023, in which Texas scored 21 points in the fourth quarter. In hindsight, the win was seen as a springboard for the Longhorns’ 12-2 season, which included winning the Big 12 championship game and reaching the College Football Playoff semifinals at the Sugar Bowl.

Texas’ victory over Alabama was the last victory by a visiting team at Bryant-Denny Stadium with Nick Saban as head coach of the Crimson Tide. Saban retired on January 10 after 17 seasons and six national championships with Alabama.

Also No. 2 on Simonton’s list is renewing the Miami-Florida rivalry right at the start on Aug. 31 at The Swamp. The Hurricanes and Gators have played each other 56 times, but this will be the first meeting between the schools since 2019. This is the first part of a home-and-home agreement that will move the series to Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens in 2025. Future games between Miami and Florida after 2025 are still uncertain.

More Longhorns news

By Isla