Coach Jim Harbaugh was conscious of the criticisms his offense received after the opening four games. They were criticized for not being creative in their playcalling and too much relying on the run.
Michigan's offense averaged 290.8 yard on the ground, compared to 164 yards passing per game. Harbaugh stated that it was a goal of his to change that going into Saturday’s game against Wisconsin.
"Yes, we threw it on the first play. We've been trying to be balanced, throwing and running the ball. Harbaugh stated that they had a similar approach and a team with a great run defense. It was mixed. We believe in our quarterbacks. We also believe in our receivers. We believe that we can throw the ball well and we can run it well.
"But yes, we're going both. You can travel in two different ways, right?
He was referring specifically to the analogy in which Gen. George Patton could get his job done on ground while astronaut Neil Armstrong was able to do the same through the air.
As Michigan's offense gained 365 yards against Wisconsin, the Wolverines won the game 38-17. It was the Wolverines first victory in Madison since 2001. Cade McNamara's Quarterback and J.J. McCarthy's Running Back were responsible for 253 yards of passing and three touchdowns through air. The running backs had 112 yards and only one touchdown.
One part of the offensive strategy for this game was to use McCarthy on designed runs plays. This eventually opened up the pass game and led to Daylen Baldwin's touchdown reception at 56 yards.
Harbaugh stated, "He's very athletic and we thought he'd have some looks to be able pull the ball and attempt to get it on the perimeter." He had a 9-yard gain and had a nice gain. He can also throw the ball very well. We tried to get him as many times as possible. That's our thinking.
While the defense is still making progress, Michigan is beginning to answer some questions about offense. Harbaugh stated that he believes there is a certain confidence in this team now that the Wolverines are at 5-0.
This confidence was evident on the sidelines as "Jump Around" by House of Pain was played in Camp Randall Stadium just before the fourth quarter. Michigan's team could also be seen jumping to the music. This was a marked difference from the time the Wolverines faced Wisconsin on the road in 2019, when they won 35-14.
Harbaugh stated, "They had that vibe about them since the moment they first stepped in the locker room, when our first arrived here early this morning." They were unflinchingly determined to win. They didn't flinch when punches were thrown, and that's how it ended."
This confidence has resulted in trust among the players, which is translating into Harbaugh's and the coaching staff's play on the field. Although the team isn’t quite where they want to be, Harbaugh stated that it is getting closer with each game.
"Great amount of creativity that's there. Harbaugh stated that he has seen a lot of plays and nearly every offensive play. And they are being executed by guys who have learned them. Let's move on. I felt confident that our men were up for the challenge today and didn't want to be denied. "Now, on to the next one."