Harbaugh: Big House Sounded "The Way It’s Supposed To" Saturday Night

Michigan fans turned back the clock.

Will Burchfield
November 03, 2018 - 11:29 pm

© Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

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Jim Harbaugh sat down for his press conference after Michigan's 42-7 win over Penn State on Saturday night hoping to answer one question in particular. Nearly 20 questions and 15 minutes later, it hadn't been asked. A Michigan spokesperson announced there was time for one more. 

Is your team learning how to wear opponents down, Jim? 

Not it. Determined to get his message across, Harbaugh took matters into his own hands. 

"Maybe just to change the subject, since this is the last question, I want to say our stadium, our fans, it had a different feel tonight. Like the old days, it felt like that to me. Just an energized group of fans and student section," Harbaugh said. "This was a Saturday at Michigan in Ann Arbor the way it’s supposed to be, the way I remember it at the very highest level.

"That was an electric atmosphere out there and that’s great. Gives me chills, and I think our team responded to that as well." 

Earlier this week, Chase Winovich and Devin Bush appeared in a promotional video challenging Michigan fans to turn up the noise with the No. 14 Nittany Lions coming to town. 

"I challenge every one of you to take it up a notch, and make the Big House the loudest its ever been," Winovich said. 

The video was released on Friday afternoon. It was lived up to Saturday night. 

Well, just about. 

"The crowd was awesome all night. I’d say it was the second loudest I’ve ever felt at the Big House," said Winovich. "Myself and Devin Bush asked the fans if they could step up their game and bring it, and they did just that. So we’re fueling them, they’re fueling us. I think we’ve got a great relationship rolling."

What's the loudest Winovich has ever heard the Big House? That would be last year against Ohio State, when he said he didn't know if a teammate next to could hear him as he called out plays on defense. 

As far as junior linebacker Josh Uche is concerned, Saturday night topped the charts. The decibels peaked, he said, when David Long picked off Trace McSorely immediately after Michigan went up 35-0 in the fourth quarter. 

"I’m looking for third down, that’s what I’m looking for. I’m like, 'Get it to third down, get it to third down.' I look up, I see D. Long with the pick, I’m like, 'Alright, let’s go!' and the crowd went crazy. This is probably the loudest I’ve ever heard the crowd. They showed up tonight," Uche said. 

In that same video, Bush said, "When we’re on defense, stand and make it so loud it disrupts Penn State’s offense." There's no question the fans met that challenge. 

"Penn State’s offense couldn’t even hear the snap count or any of that stuff, so it was a big factor," said Uche. 

The crowd enjoyed a celebratory atmosphere for much of the game. No. 5 Michigan scored on its first drive of the day and never looked back. Late in the fourth quarter, 'Sweet Caroline' blared on the loudspeakers and Karan Higdon sang along with the crowd. 

So good! So good! So good!

The Wolverines will enter the top four of the College Football Playoff rankings this week thanks to Alabama taking down No. 3 LSU. With three regular season games remaining, the fans, some of whom were ready to jump ship after the season-opening loss to Notre Dame, are really starting to buy in. 

Winovich said he first started to feel the mood turn after Michigan crushed then-No. 15 Wisconsin last month. The following week they took down then-No. 24 Michigan State. Then Penn State. 

"I think a couple weeks ago when we first beat Wisconsin, the revenge tour, we kind of had a bandwagon there," Winovich said. "I think we’re rolling into these last couple games and eventually into Columbus with more like a battleship. I think everyone’s trying to hop in and hop on. We got momentum, we just have to keep it rolling week by week."