Michigan won the coin flip, and then deferred. That means it chose to receive the 2nd half kickoff, not the 1st half. Georgia got the ball first. I groaned out loud, right away. Every single time I see an underdog do this, I shake my head (Michigan State deferred when it played Ohio State).
This was a clear error, and the simple reason is that Michigan needed the improbable, it could not use the “simple average game” scenario.
Stuff had to go right, very right. In order for the low-probability event (Michigan win) to occur.
The best way for that? GET AHEAD IMMEDIATELY.
How does that occur? GET THE BALL FIRST AND SCORE.
Even then, it may not have mattered. That doesn’t make the decision to defer correct.
Instead, what happened? Down by only 7 points, Michigan attempted to “go for it” on 4th down and 4, in the first quarter. In other words, Michigan knew it was in trouble early, and after it failed, and Georgia scored, I effectively stopped watching. It was over.