Anyone who watched the Michigan-Ohio State clash this past Saturday saw a defensive performance for the ages from UM edge rusher Aidan Hutchinson.

The senior defender had 7 tackles and 3 sacks, setting the Michigan program record for sacks in a season in the process. Hutchinson, widely viewed as a future top selection in the 2022 NFL Draft, gave Ohio State headaches all game long and pressured Buckeye quarterback CJ Stroud often. The 27 points Ohio State scored were the second-fewest in a game this season.

The next offense Hutchinson will try and wreck? Iowa. The Wolverines (11-1, 8-1 Big Ten) meet the Hawkeyes (10-2, 7-2 Big Ten) in Indianapolis next Saturday for the Big Ten championship.

During a teleconference call on Sunday, Iowa head coach Kirk Ferentz told reporters that Michigan’s defense was not a one-man show, but “that one man is really special.” Ferentz called him an outstanding player and said “he’s elusive, he’s strong, and has a tremendous motor.”

But it was the comparison Ferentz offered that stood out.

Howie Long and John Randle are both members of the pro football Hall of Fame. JJ Watt, a 5-time All-Pro selection and 3-time AP Defensive Player of the Year, has a good chance of joining them when his career is over.

That’s lofty praise.