The Wolverines have a tough BIg Ten schedule this fall and likely won't escape conference play unscathed. Michigan plays at Penn State and Wisconsin, and hosts Ohio State. Chances are they don't go 3-0 in those games, making a week one win all the more important.
No 2-loss team has ever made the college football playoff, and if Michigan wants to avoid trying to be the first, they'll need to take care of business against Florida.
The Wolverines head into the contest with a completely revamped roster. Eleven players were drafted from last year's squad and a few more graduated, leaving ony five returning starters. That means a lot of holes need to be filled.
Michigan does return quarterback Wilton Speight, who was pretty good last year — he completed 61.6 percent of his 331 pass attempts for 2,538 yards, 18 touchdowns and 7 interceptions. He's in a QB battle with former Houston transfer John O'Korn.
Jim Harbaugh has yet to announce who will start for the Wolverines, citing the fact that Florida has yet to announce a starter either as his reasoning.
Here's a look at how the two teams fared statistically last season:
Again, many of the players from those two starting lineups are now gone. Every college football season starts with a blank slate.
Both of these teams — top 20 in the preseason — have postseason aspirations. Both know they need a win in week one to propel their chances at a college football playoff berth.
The last time these two teams met was the end of the 2015 college football season when the Wolverines absolutely throttled the Gators in the 2016 Citrus Bowl, a 41-7 beatdown.
Not many players remain from those two teams, as each has seen plenty of turnover and lost players with eligibility to the NFL. But you can bet Jim Harbaugh and Jim McElwain remember the game, the first bowl game appearance for each on their new team.
You can check out this marquee week 1 matchup on Saturday, Sept. 2 at 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC and the WatchESPN app.