The Game could be in serious jeopardy.
After an increase in positive COVID-19 cases at Michigan, this weekend's game between Maryland and the Wolverines has been canceled, and next week's rivalry game against Ohio State could be next.
In addition to the canceled game, Michigan announced on Wednesday that it will be pausing football practices until at least Monday, and that daily testing will continue and "medical professionals will make a determination when to resume practice."
Despite the Monday target date for returning to practice, the COVID-19 situation at Michigan could still threaten next week's Ohio State game, with Michigan insider Chris Balas of The Wolverine going as far as to say he would "bet heavily" against The Game being played.
Sources: Michigan football's situation has not gotten better on the COVID front. At this point, we'd bet heavily against games this week or next.— Chris Balas (@Balas_Wolverine) December 2, 2020
If The Game is indeed canceled, it would mark the first year Ohio State and Michigan did not meet on the football field since the 1917 season – before the Buckeyes had even won a game in the series.
A canceled game would drop the Buckeyes' total number of regular-season contests below the required six to qualify for the Big Ten championship game, unless Ohio State is able to schedule a replacement game in its place.
Earlier this month, the Big Ten approved a process for conference teams to schedule a new game against another Big Ten team if both of their games are canceled by their opponent due to COVID-19 issues in the same week, provided that those two teams aren't dealing with COVID-19 outbreaks themselves and that the new game can be scheduled by Wednesday of that week.