Michigan lost to Michigan State on an ending for the ages, as the Spartans returned a muffed Wolverines punt for a touchdown. Michigan is still a very good football team in Jim Harbaugh's first season, but former coach Brady Hoke, who was fired for going 5-7 with a very similar Michigan team, disagreed with Harbaugh's decision to punt:
"Personally, if we have the No. 1 defense in the nation I'm going to test those guys," Hoke said. "You've got to play to the strength of your football team and the strength of the Michigan football team all year long has been their defense."
He said he was sure "Jimmy" went over what he wanted to do and how he wanted to do it, but Hoke said there are too many potential breakdowns on a punt.
"No. 1, I think the one gunner to the field should have been in a little bit more and if you're going to punt it there's ways to protect it a little better," Hoke said.
Hoke is no stranger to critical end-game decisions. As he admitted, his decision to go for two at home at the end of a game against No. 3 Ohio State in 2013 backfired. There are also dangers to not punting in that situation, with the ball near midfield. There was only a 0.2-percent chance of MSU winning before the punt, and MSU could have thrown a Hail Mary if it got the ball back, which it has succeeded at before. Hoke's teams also had issues routinely sending 10 players out on special teams.
Hoke and Harbaugh have shared opinions on Michigan football before, last on TV on National Signing Day.