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Michigan Wolverines, Rutgers Scarlet Knights football teams on even footing during losing streaks

Michigan quarterback Joe Milton throws in the second half against Michigan State on Oct. 31 in Ann Arbor. (AP file photo)

PISCATAWAY, N.J. — Rutgers has waited for the day when its football team is on the same footing with some of the big boys of the Big Ten Conference.

It’s happened this year. The Scarlet Knights and Michigan are right there with each other heading into Saturday night’s game at SHI Stadium.

Unfortunately, they are near the bottom of the conference standings with 1-3 records and riding three-game losing streaks.

It’s the worst start for the Wolverines since 1967, when they began 1-5 and finished 4-6.

“We’re never going to stop. We’re never going to slow down,” Michigan coach Jim Harbaugh said. “We’re never going to feel sorry for ourselves.”

Michigan quarterback Joe Milton passes in the first quarter against Wisconsin in Ann Arbor on Saturday. (AP photo)

The Wolverines are coming off a 49-11 loss to No. 10 Wisconsin, their most lopsided loss at home since 1935.

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UNDER CENTER

Michigan has started Joe Milton at quarterback in each of its four games this season, but his job is in jeopardy after throwing as many touchdowns (four) as interceptions. He has completed 59% of his passes and averaged 242 yards passing. Milton was replaced in last week’s loss by Cade McNamara, who seemed to provide a spark as he capped his first drive with a touchdown pass.

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SOCIAL DISTANCING

The Wolverines have been criticized on Twitter and elsewhere, and have been encouraged to ignore the comments.

“We talk about every day, even the coaches after practice, they talk about don’t worry about what they’re saying on social media,” defensive back Germon Green said.

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