For the second year in a row, Michigan has overcome the Fighting Irish in the dying seconds of the match, which will surely vault the Wolverines into the top 25 polls!
The victory was scrappy, and there are so many things to work on, but right now I couldn't be any more happy! The last three Heisman trophy winners have been sophomores, and if Denard Robinson keeps putting up these numbers he could continue the trend. Anyway, here's a quick analysis of the game.
Robinson completed 24 of 40 passes for 244 yards and also ran for 258 yards on the ground, including an 87 yard TD run....which somehow wasn't the longest play of the day? Plus, when it mattered most, down three points with just minutes left, he led his team into the endzone, securing another historic victory over the Irish!
Tay Odoms and Roy Roundtree were very impressive at WR, gaining 91 and 82 yards respectively. The running back situation worries me, its clear to see why no one "won" the job in camp. The best stat for the team was no turnovers, the worst stat is either 8 penalties for 99 yards (most of which were for holding and false starts), or 3/16 on third down.
The funniest play of the day was when Will Campbell and Quintin Washington lined up as lead blockers for Hopkins 1 yard TD run. No stopping those guys...
Special teams were pretty poor, Gibbons missed FG's from 39 and 40 yards, and Michigan didn't get any openings on kick or punt returns. Will Hagerup had the freshman nerves, slicing a few punts for little yardage, but calmed down and delivered two decent punts within the 20 late in the game. He averaged 38.2 off nine punts with a long of 53. Kickoff and punt coverage was decent.
The Michigan defense had its good and bad moments, Cam Gordon certainly isn't a deep safety, but with UMass and Bowling Green next on the schedule, they will get some vital experience before heading into Big Ten play.
Cullen Christian made a rookie error by hitting Michael Floyd when he was going out of bounds, setting up a tense final play. There were some break downs in coverage, Kyle Rudolph had 164 yards receiving, including a 96 yard TD. However they did manage three interceptions, one from each QB that Notre Dame played.
They will certainly have to improve that coverage in future, but they weren't helped out that much by the D-line, who I didn't think got that much pressure once Crist came back in. A lot of the time they only rushed three, probably fearing the ND receivers would get free if they blitzed more.
Its funny how everyone says Denard Robinson can't run 29 times a game every week without getting injured, but he ran it 28 times against Notre Dame and only missed one snap. Yet Dane Crist disappeared for almost two quarters after taking two hits. The Irish will be using this as their primary excuse for losing.
Notre Dame fans will moan, especially this guy - Damefan1, who no doubt is wondering why he talks trash BEFORE the game is played? Last year ND fans complained about the refs, however this year Michigan has reason for complaint, T.J Jones (is that his name?) clearly let go of the ball before entering the endzone on his 56 yard "touchdown".
Overall, you have to be happy. This is the first road win since Minnesota in 2008, and it comes against a good ND team with a top coach in Brian Kelly. Michigan should once again start the season 4-0, and now they will feel a lot more confident when they travel to Indiana.
I'm glad my prediction was wrong. Go Blue!
Oh, and UConn won 62-3, which makes last week look even better! Admittedly they played Texas Southern, but still :D.