Michigan is riding high after defeating #5 Boston College 3-2 last week. They skate 11 freshmen on the team after losing half of last season's roster to graduation and/or early defection.
Michigan head coach Red Berenson puts out a fairly young team on the ice but that doesn't mean they don't have talent and power.
The Wolverines' assistant captains, junior forward T.J. Hensick and junior defenseman Matt Hunwick, lead the team in points with ten and nine. Sophomore forward Kevin Porter leads the team with 5 goals in 4 games.
Facing a tough Wolverine team presents an early test for the Spartans, who will face on of the more difficult schedules in the nation in 2005-06.
Besides their CCHA schedule featuring four games each against rivals Alaska Fairbanks, Michigan and Nebraska-Omaha, the Spartans have to 04-05 national runner-up #6 North Dakota, and defending ECAC champion #3 Cornell. They also play #8 Minnesota, #13 Wisconsin, and a possible showdown with #4 Colorado College in the Great Lakes Invitational (GLI).
Sophomore forward Bryan Lerg leads the Spartans in points with four on the early season. Junior goaltender Dominic Vicari (2-0-0) will be a key player for the Spartans as he has showed early dominance with a .50 goals against average and already recording a shutout. Top goals scorer from last season Colton Fretter (20) and Drew Miller (17) return for 05-06 and have each recorder a goal already.
Coach Rick Comley will try to continue the Spartans strong play against the Wolverines from their final matchup last season, which was a 1-1 tie.
Michigan leads the all-time series against Michigan State 128-113-13 and also in Ann Arbor 65-41-3. Luckily for the Spartans, this will be their only visit to Ann Arbor this season.