Michigan football players rarely publicly reminisce on past
losses, and that didn’t change significantly this week
despite the fact that the Wolverines have dropped two consecutive
losses to Iowa. The Wolverines haven’t talked about the
special drills they have been doing in preparation for revenge
— something Notre Dame did en route to beating Michigan
earlier this season.

But the Wolverines still remember.

“It’s hard not to,” senior defensive end Pat
Massey said. “Because those (memories) really stick
out.”

Both of the past two years, Michigan entered the Iowa week with
a top-10 ranking. And both years, Michigan left Iowa week with its
second loss of the season.

“We’re obviously aware of it,” senior
cornerback Marlin Jackson said. “But we have to get ready for
this team.”

The first of those two losses was a 34-9 drubbing by the
Hawkeyes, the worst home loss for the Wolverines since 1967.
Michigan was down just 10-9 in the third quarter before consecutive
Iowa touchdowns put the game out of reach, causing many in
attendance to head for the exits well before the final gun.

“I remember the stadium emptying out,” Bass said.
“I remember the empty feeling inside me and the rest of my
teammates.”

During the game, the Wolverines amassed just 22 yards on the
ground and 171 yards overall. The Hawkeyes went onto the Orange
Bowl; the Wolverines went to the Outback.

“It hurts a little bit,” senior guard Matt Lentz
said. “They came in and pretty much embarrassed
us.”

Although both teams came into the 2002 matchup undefeated in Big
Ten play, Iowa entered last season’s not nearly as highly
touted because it had lost its offensive skill nucleus of
quarterback Brad Banks and running back Fred Russell.

But the Wolverines were nearly taken out of the conference race
once again after their fourth-quarter comeback attempt came up
short and then lost 30-27.

So the Wolverines remember.

“Basically (I remember) a bitter taste being in our mouth,
not getting it done,” Bass said. “Especially two years
in a row, and they’re going to try and make it
three.”

Bumped out: When Michigan released its new depth chart on
Monday, there was a surprising omission from the probable starting
lineup. After starting 16 straight games, senior cornerback Markus
Curry was listed behind sophomore Leon Hall to start opposite
Jackson in the defensive backfield. Curry has been thrown at
significantly in the young season, leaving Jackson with few balls
coming his way.

But the positions of other players on the depth chart diminish
its validity. Freshman running back Mike Hart, who ran for 121
yards on Saturday against San Diego State, was ranked as the No. 5
running back.

“The thing about those depth charts is that they are
issued on Monday,” Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said.
“They’re as much as we know at that time. They can
change based on practice, based on injuries, based on a lot of
things.”

Where’s Gutz?: No one seems to be satisfied with
the lack of information available about the status of Matt
Gutierrez. But Carr isn’t giving out any more, and he’s
tired of talking about it.

“Look, I have no idea what the prognosis is,” Carr
said. “All I can do is go on a day-by-day basis. Last
Saturday, he threw the ball, but he did not throw the ball
particularly well compared to where he was before he began to be
bothered by the soreness.”

A corps of one?: While it’s well documented that
the Michigan receiving corps is one of the best in college
football, quarterback Chad Henne has done little thus far to use
all of his resources to his disposal. Currently, Braylon Edwards
ranks fourth in the nation in receptions per game, but none of his
cohorts have 100 yards of receiving for the entire season.

“That’s something that we’re working on
everyday,” Carr said.

Notes: Michigan’s game next week at Indiana has
been scheduled for 3:30 p.m. The game will be the Big Ten regional
game on ABC for that week … Carr said that senior running
back David Underwood would likely be able to play on Saturday.

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