15 August 2009

Wolverines Limp Away From Ugly Bloodbath in Iowa

Michigan's players made enough plays to pull out the victory

Michigan just played their most brutal game of the season as they beat the Iowa Hawkeyes 38-28, but it was a very costly and ugly win. The first quarter was about as bad of a start to a game as one could imagine for the Wolverines. For starters, they turned the ball over twice and gave up the first TD on a 13 yard pass from Stanzi to Sandeman. What's worse, Senior HB and offensive captain Brandon Minor would sprain his ACL on only his 3rd carry of the game. He would miss the rest of the game and it is feared that he will miss at least his next game as well.

Iowa's defense was absolutely relentless. When it was all said and done, they would force 3 turnovers and record 8 sacks including 5 from junior DE Adrian Clayborn. All of these 8 sacks would come in the first half while QB Tate Forcier would only be able to get off 7 pass attempts. This ridiculous pressure would certainly weigh heavily on the mind of head coach Briggs. In the 2nd half, the Hawkeyes would not record another sack, but this is because Forcier would only attempt 3 more passes for the rest of the game. Coach Briggs completely took the air out of the ball and ran on almost every single down. When asked about this after the game coach Briggs said "sure it wasn't even remotely fun having to run the ball on every down, but what else could I do? I couldn't allow them to keep teeing off on my quarterback like they did in the first half. This was easily the least fun game of football I've ever coached, but at least we got the win. I suppose that's all that matters, right?......... Right?"

Unfortunately for the Wolverines, the carnage didn't stop at halftime. Early in the 3rd quarter, 2nd string HB Michael Shaw would be injured and he would end up missing the rest of the game. This really tested the running back depth of the Wolverines, but luckily for them, they have 2 decent senior running backs in the 3rd and 4th string slots in Carlos Brown and Kevin Grady. At one point in the 4th quarter Carlos Brown would go down too with an injury, but luckily he returned. Michigan would outscore the Hawkeyes 14-0 in the 3rd to take a 28-12 lead into the 4th quarter. Iowa's passing game was neigh unstoppable today and they really went to work in the 4th quarter, throwing for 2 TDs. This last TD would bring the Hawkeyes to within 3, 31-28. Michigan continued to run the ball to chew up the clock. Then, just about the worst possible thing happened to the Wolverines. With only 56 seconds remaining in the game and leading by only 3 points, HB Carlos Brown would take a pitch from Forcier and scamper 13 yards for a touchdown that would finally put the game out of reach. Unfortunately, as Forcier made the pitch he was hit in the midsection and would suffer an abdominal tear. Team doctors said that they expect him to miss about 4 weeks as he recovers. This will include crucial games at Illinois and hosting #3 Penn State. Wolverine fans will get to see what backup quarterback Denard Robinson can do next week against Marshall.

Here are some highlights of the carnage that ensued this evening.
video


Box Score
Team1st2nd3rd4thFinal
Michigan
7
7
14
10
38
Iowa
6
6
0
16
28

Team Statistics

Mich
Iowa
Score38
28
First Downs12
14
Total Off.330
375
Rushes-Yds-TD37-176-4
28-27-0
Comp-Att-TD9-12-1
29-37-4
Passing Yards154
348
3rd down conv.6-9(66%)
9-17(52%)
4th down conv1-1(100%)
2-3(67%)
Red Zone-TD-FG4-4-0(100%)
1-1-0(100%)
Turnovers3
2
Fumbles lost2
1
Intercepted1
1
T.O.P.
14:30
13:29

Players of the Game
Mich - Brandon Graham - 8 tackles (6 TFL), 4 sacks
Iowa - C. Sandeman - 10 rec, 169 yards, 2 TD

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