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VIDEO: Winter Classic preparations of Michigan Stadium begin

By Brian Stubits | CBSSports.com

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Football season is done at the University of Michigan, or at least the Wolverine's home games are finished. That means that the NHL has already begun preparations for the 2014 Winter Classic at the Big House between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs.

Not long after Michigan nearly beat rival Ohio State, the NHL got to work on preparing the stadium for an ice sheet. It sounds like the league enlisted Benny Hill or somebody to do the groundwork.

That's just the start, though. The NHL won't actually take over Michigan Stadium until next Thursday when the ice truck will make its way to Ann Arbor to begin the rink-making process. It shouldn't be a horribly tough challenge in this year's Winter Classic considering we're talking about Michigan in December.

These teams were scheduled to meet at the Big House last year but the lockout in the NHL forced the cancelation of the game, which was soon rewarded back to Detroit and Ann Arbor (there will be a second rink at Detroit's Comerica Park that will host all the other festivities of the Winter Classic). The game is set for Jan. 1.

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