The Michigan Wolverines enter the College Football Playoff as the No. 1 team in the four-team field after winning the Big Ten Championship over Iowa and topping Ohio State the week prior.

Running back Blake Corum has been a key difference-maker in Michigan’s run this season. Corum’s 24 rushing touchdowns lead the nation. He also has 1,028 rushing yards to his credit, which is top 40 in the country.

Corum and the rest of the team have been able to steady the ship in rocky waters all season. Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh was suspended twice during the season and the school was engulfed in a sign-stealing scandal. But through it all, Michigan continued to win.

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Blake Corum smiles

Michigan running back Blake Corum celebrates with fans after Michigan defeated Ohio State 30-24 in an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Nov. 25, 2023, in Ann Arbor, Mich. (AP Photo/David Dermer)

“It meant a lot,” Corum told Fox News Digital when asked what it meant to him to hear Michigan get named the No. 1 team in the Playoff. “Just fighting through adversity all year, not having our head coach for six games and our linebacker coach fired and getting slayed by the media, but we stood together as a team and as a unit, and we were able to overcome the adversity and staying solid through it all.

“So, being recognized as the No. 1 team, playing a great Alabama team, it’s going to be really fun. I’m super excited. And I’m ready to start watching film. I know we have a couple of weeks, but we need to start now and take it to them when it comes down to it.”

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Blake Corum talks to Joel Klatt

Michigan running back Blake Corum is interviewed after the Big Ten championship NCAA college football game against Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/AJ Mast)

Corum, who spoke to Fox News Digital as he was named the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team Captain for his charitable efforts over the year, said the negative media attention didn’t really provide the extra bulletin board material.

“The team we have right here, I don’t believe we need any extra (motivation). We already have a chip on our shoulder. It didn’t need to come from the media calling us all types of names or coach getting suspended or anything like that,” he explained. “I feel like we’ve always felt like, it’s always been Michigan versus everybody and I think that’s the way we train. That’s our motto. That’s our mindset.

“Obviously, with everything going on, it definitely has brought more attention to us, more hatred, but we love it.”

MICHIGAN STAR BLAKE CORUM’S COMMUNITY IMPACT LEADS TO TOP HONOR: ‘IT’S A BLESSING’

Michigan will play Alabama in the Rose Bowl on Jan. 1 and the winner will meet the winner of Washington and Texas on Jan. 8.

JJ McCarthy and Jim Harbaugh

Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy (9) talks with head coach Jim Harbaugh before the Big Ten championship NCAA college football game against Iowa, Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

Corum said the key to the Wolverines winning the national title will be just playing “Michigan football” and giving a complete game.

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Michigan has not won a national title since 1997. The team topped Washington State in the Rose Bowl, 21-16, to finish the season ranked No. 1.



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