ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Finally Jabrill Peppers has his shot at Ohio State.
A self admitted life long Wolverine fan, Peppers has been looking forward to playing Ohio State his whole life. However, he missed his first shot at the Buckeyes due to a leg injury that caused him to redshirt his freshman season in 2014.
Instead of joining his teammates in Columbus last year, an “angry” Peppers stayed him in the dorms and watched U-M lose to OSU, 42-28, with Michigan season coming to a 5-7 finish, ending their chances of becoming eligible for a bowl game.
“I’m not going to lie to you, I was mad because I couldn’t play and that I couldn’t be there to cheer the guys on,” Peppers recalled of last years OSU loss. “But at the same time, I knew that my time was coming. And just take everything as a learning experience. Support the guys from home. I knew they prepared a good week of practice for the game. But it was definitely heart breaking to lose, each every year we come out strong, we just got to finish.”
Now, Peppers plays a key role for the Wolverines top-ranked Big Ten defense, while also playing on offense and retuning punts. And now that he has his shot at playing the Buckeyes for the first time, when asked about his feelings on the OSU game, Peppers couldn’t hide his excitement.
“I am very excited, when you come to Michigan -- it’s Michigan State and Ohio State -- those are big games in your schedule historically and traditionally,” Peppers said. “We are definitely taking it the same approach as we did last week, the biggest game is the next game. It just happens to be the next game now -- it’s Ohio State. It adds that little extra oomph, and if you have any once of competitive blood in your spirit, you get aroused for a game like this. They have a lot of great players, a lot of great competitors, so do we. We are just looking forward to it. It’s going t be a dogfight.”
No. 10 Michigan (9-2, 6-1 Big Ten) plays host to No. 8 Ohio State( 10-1, 6-1) at Noon ET this Saturday.